ISA Awards 2023 showcase diversity of independent education in another record-breaking year
The Independent Schools Association (ISA) celebrated the impact and individuality of its Members’ schools with the ISA Awards 2023 ceremony on Monday 6 November.
The ISA Awards are a celebration of the diverse and fascinating ways in which the 646 schools across the Association use their independence to provide something truly special to the children in their care.
On a special night for many, Kriss Akabusi MBE took to the field as host of the ceremony. Inspiring guests with his journey to success on the track, Kriss also relived the magical moment that was the 4x400m relay triumph for Team GB at the 1991 World Championships in Tokyo.
Three new ISA Awards were introduced for 2023, making it a total of 15 categories in which best practice was recognised.
LVS Hassocks were named the inaugural ISA SEND School of the Year. A school for specialist provision, LVS Hassocks removes the barriers that disadvantaged pupils may have faced in mainstream education. In developing their curriculum to match the student, rather than the other way around, no ceiling is placed on a pupil’s capabilities. Young people are supported to achieve qualifications which are recognised and equip them with the skills they need for later life.
ISA Boarding School of the Year was awarded to TASIS England, where pupil voice is paramount. To this end the school have launched a programme which allows them to proactively understand and address wellbeing concerns for boarders before they become stressors. This also encourages young people to create strategies to manage their own wellbeing beyond their time with TASIS.
The first ISA Award for Excellence in Future Readiness went to King’s High School Warwick. The school’s curriculum has been reimagined, positioning core skills such as creative thinking and oracy at its centre. This has brought the launch of two GCSE-equivalent courses which prepare students for an evolving future, whilst inspiring their social responsibilities as individuals who can drive change.
2023 marked a record number of entries for the ISA Awards, reflecting the continued growth of ISA’s membership in recent years.
Chief Executive Officer of the ISA, Rudolf Eliott Lockhart, added:
“This is a fantastic set of winners. In all cases the schools have shown themselves to be outstanding in their category. These winners really show the different ways that independence can be used to meet the different and specific needs of pupils.
“I am delighted that we have new awards celebrating SEND, future readiness and boarding. These are areas of particular strength within ISA and it is important to be able to highlight some of the excellent and innovative practice that we see in our schools.
“The ISA Awards are a testament to the way that the different strengths of all pupils are identified and championed by the Heads, teachers, and staff across the schools within our Association.”
The winners of the ISA Awards 2023 are:
ISA Senior School of the Year Award: Leighton Park School
ISA Junior School of the Year Award: Finborough School
ISA Award for Excellence and Innovation in Early Years: Gosfield School
ISA SEND School of the Year Award (New for 2023): LVS Hassocks
ISA Boarding School of the Year Award (New for 2023): TASIS England
ISA Award for Innovation in Independent Education: Maple Hayes Dyslexia School
ISA Award for Excellence in Future Readiness (New for 2023): King’s High School Warwick
ISA Award for Excellence and Innovation in Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: Chelsea Hall School
ISA Award for Excellence and Innovation in Mental Health and Wellbeing: Colchester Prep & High School
ISA Award for Outstanding Engagement in the Community: Claires Court
ISA Award for Excellence in Sustainability: Holme Grange School
ISA Award for Excellence and Innovation in the Performing Arts: Claremont Senior School
ISA Award for Excellence and Innovation in Art and Design: Eaton Square School
ISA Award for Outstanding Sport in a Small School: Brooke House College
ISA Award for Outstanding Sport in a Large School: Alleyn Court Preparatory School
ISA would like to thank everyone who took the time to enter the ISA Awards 2023, the excellence and innovation shown across the entries inspires best practice to be shared across the sector.