An Inclusive Multi-Academy Trust

The Torch Academy Gateway Trust is a dynamic and growing MAT Group based in the East Midlands. Our Trust Group is committed to providing high quality education to all of our students, regardless of their backgrounds. Our track record demonstrates our ability to deliver our core goal, achievement for every child. Our portfolio of schools includes both secondary and primary schools, working in a range of contexts. In addition we founded the Torch Teaching School Alliance, which links 23 schools together sharing effective practice and developing new models for staff development.


25th November 2014: School ClosureBirklands School

As you may know we have had no central heating since this time last week. As we are committed to remaining open as we know the inconvenience caused for families having to find child care, we have been using temporary electric heaters to keep the classrooms warm.

This morning the heaters blew the main fuse and we were left with no power for several hours.

As the heating is still not mended and we have been advised that the electric problem has only been temporarily fixed until the electricians can get the proper fuse we will be closed tomorrow. 

We will let everyone know in good time if we are able to open safely on Thursday.

I would like to thank everyone for their patience and cooperation.

25th November 2014: Maths Mock in Assessment weekMeden School

All year 11 students will be sitting two papers for assessment week, one on Monday and one on Tuesday. For both they will require a pen, pencil, ruler, protractor and compasses. On Tuesday they will also need to bring with them a scientific calculator. Equipment will not be provided, it is expected that they will arrive to the exam fully prepared. Any student wishing to purchase equipment before the exam should do so before Monday at the finance office.

19th November 2014: Maths MattersNUSA

NUSA’s mathematics department have put together an extensive programme of extra sessions for pupils from all year groups. All pupils are encouraged to take advantage of this fantastic offering, which will help secure continued progress.

Years 11, 12 & 13:

Mr Amin, Tuesday (D Block) & Friday (C101)

Mrs Mullins, Thursday (D Block)

Year 10:

Miss Carter & Mr Aldridge, Thursday (C102)

Year 9:

Miss Allen, Thursday (C116)

Year 8:

Mr Whitfield, Tuesday (C103)

Year 7:

Mr Worrall, Monday (C115)

17th November 2014: Anti-Bullying Week BeginsBirklands School

Birklands' pupils start a week of anti-bullying activities.

17th November 2014: KS3 Football looking Sharpe!Toot Hill School

Congratulations to the Y7 Boys and Y8/7 Girls on reaching the English Schools Football Association Round 4. The Boys beat Joseph Whittaker School 2-0 and the Girls beat Ashfield 2-1 in Round 3. Both teams looked the part in the new Adidas kit and are hopeful of going either further in the next round. The Boys have a home fixture against Carres Grammar School (Lincoln) and the Girls are away at West Bridgford (Nottingham). Good luck to both teams!

14th November 2014: Birklands' HeroesBirklands School

Birklands' pupils raise £237 for Children in Need 2014

14th November 2014: Christmas ReadsToot Hill School

Christmas is coming…We are pleased to inform you that as of Monday 17th November we will be stamping books for the Christmas holidays; with a date for Wednesday 14th January

 "What will be your Festive read?

Let the Learning Lounge plant that seed!

Such a selection; what a choice.

 From Kinney, Walliams and Frank Cottrell Boyce.

Come in and choose, come in and look.

Inspiration in every book.

Super long loan, no need to worry.

Just get yourself here in a hurry."

(more to follow)

13th November 2014: Competition Time!! - Project RemixToot Hill School

Malorie Blackman - Children's Laureate - is championing a new competition... 

Malorie Blackman has launched Project Remix- a nation-wide competition to find the UK’s best young writers and creatives!

The competition is open to UK residents age 13-19: to enter, teenagers are asked to make their own creative work in response to a selection of books, stories, poems and graphic novels from some of the bestselling contemporary and classic authors, including: John Green, Suzanne Collins, Philip Pullman, Benjamin Zephaniah, Jane Austen, Arthur Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker.

Entries can be submitted in five categories:

  • Music
  • Book cover design
  • Book trailer
  • Creative writing
  • Comic strip

Click on the link below for more details:



Closing date is Monday 23rd February 2015


10th November 2014: Excellent Attendance for EndeavourMeden School

Excellent effort from Endeavour students who are the winners for attendance last week with a percentage of 95.2%. 

Brilliant effort keep up the excellent work! 

7th November 2014: School Council Open Co-opBirklands School

Check out the photos in the Headlines blog!


Our Trust

Meet Our Team

John Tomasevic

Trust Director
CEO Torch Academy Gateway Trust

John is a National Leader of Education and serves on the DfE Headteacher Reference Group. He led Toot Hill School from a 'satisfactory' Ofsted judgment in 2004, to 'good' in 2008 and 'outstanding' in 2011. He has also led a number of wider networks, including Nottinghamshire's 'Good to Outstanding' network. John provides the strategic lead for the TAG Trust and is Executive Headteacher of Toot Hill, Meden and NUSA.

Barrie Thomas

Chair Torch Academy Gateway Trust

Barrie is Chair of the Board of Trustees and has extensive experience of school governance. He was elected as chair of governors at Toot Hill School in 2002 and was responsible for overseeing the conversion of the school to academy status in 2011. Now semi-retired he was Managing Director of a group of companies in the service sector.

Jonathan Taylor

Trust Director
Vice CEO Torch Academy Gateway Trust

Jonathan is currently Vice CEO of the TAG Trust. He has worked in school leadership since 2000 and joined Toot Hill School as Deputy Head in 2007, before his appointment as VICE CEO in September 2012. He led the development of the Torch Teaching School Alliance and is currently project lead for the Nottingham Free School. His areas of expertise include strategic leadership, self-evaluation, pastoral care, staff development and quality assurance.

David Hooker

Trust Director
Head of School, Meden

David is currently Head of School at Meden School. He has transformed Meden School, leading it out of special measures and delivering sustained improvement that saw Meden as one of the 10 most improved schools nationally. He was previously Deputy Head at Toot Hill School. David specialises in school improvement, curriculum development, appraisal and the use of data to drive improvement.

Ashfaq Rahman

Trust Director
Head of School, Toot Hill

Ashfaq is currently Head of School at Toot Hill School. Under his leadership Toot Hill School achieved its best ever examination outcomes, securing results that place Toot Hill in the top 2% of all schools nationally. Previously as Deputy Head at Toot Hill Ashfaq led the achievement agenda, consistently securing results that place Toot Hill as one of the highest achieving schools nationally. Ashfaq specialises in personalized learning, the use of data, school improvement and school standards.

Our Values Outlined

Our values are central to developing a positive ethos throughout our group of schools. This approach is focused on securing success for all our learners and providing them with the very best life opportunities.

We believe nothing is more important than making a difference to children.

We Promote:

  • Trust: All stakeholders work together to realise our vision
  • Integrity: All decisions are based on the best interests of our students
  • Mutual Respect: Ensuring a voice for all stakeholders
  • Empathy: Teaching should be well planned, varied and stimulating
  • Self Improvement: A commitment to supporting the development of our staff, students and wider community

Group Ethos

  • High expectations are essential to raising standards
  • Everyone can succeed
  • Barriers to learning must be challenged and overcome
  • Teaching should be well planned, varied and stimulating
  • Learning should be active, focussed and engaged
  • High standards of behaviour are expected at all times
  • Clear lines of accountability exist at all levels
  • Developing staff and students to engage in effective teaching and learning

Securing Success

Our vision is to build capacity for sustained improvement. There are a number of short term strategies that can be initially used to enhance outcomes but it is out view that these need to be supplemented by a process that transforms a school for long term improvement.

This work is centred on transforming a school using our 'Pillars of Success' improvement model. Transformation is achieved through the combination of a number of changes and improvements to each of these pillars within a school:

  • Leadership
  • CPD
  • Curriculum
  • Learning Organisation
  • Care, Support, Guidance
  • Performance Mangement
  • Tracking and Intervention

Schools in our Trust

Secondary Phase

Toot Hill School

Toot Hill in an 11-18 comprehensive school, serving 1800 students, located in Bingham, Notts. Ofsted evaluated Toot Hill as 'outstanding' in December 2011 praising the school's examination outcomes, curriculum, leadership, behaviour and pastoral systems. Toot Hill runs an extended learning week and operates an innovative 'tiering' system to ensure appropriate stretch and challenge for every child. Toot Hill is the founder school of the TAG Trust and the lead school of the Torch Teaching School Alliance.

Meden School

Meden is an 11-18 comprehensive school of 900 students serving the former mining community of Market Warsop. The TAG Trust formally sponsored Meden in 2012 and has overseen its rapid improvement. Meden was in the top 10 most improved schools nationally in 2012 and this improvement was maintained in 2013.

Nottingham Free School

The Nottingham Free School will open in September 2014, serving the Sherwood, Carrington, Mapperely and Mapperely Park areas of Nottingham. The school will be distinctive, specialising in Arts and Science, and will run an extended school day. Initially opening for just Year 7 the show will grow in size to over 700 when full.

Primary Phase

Birklands School

Birklands joined the TAG Trust on 1st April 2014. It is a feeder primary school to Meden, serving children in Market Warsop. We are very excited at the prospect of supporting out first primary school and will look to establish strong links between the primary and secondary sectors, using expertise from the Torch Teaching School Alliance.

Partnership Schools


In November 2013 the TAG Trust entered into a long term partnership support agreement with Nottingham University Samworth Academy. NUSA serves the Bilbourgh area Nottingham, with 800 students on roll. Located in an iconic new building NUSA seeks to raise aspirations and secure high outcomes for students. NUSA works innovatively with its sponsors, the University of Nottingham and the Samworth Trust.

Djanogly City Academy

In April 2014 the Torch Academy Gateway Trust entered into a long term support partnership with the Djanogly City Academy. DCA is situated to the north of Nottingham and serves the communities of Forest Fields and Basford. The aim of the partnership is to improve teaching and learning, ensuring that every pupil realises their full examination potential and secures the very best start in life.


From September 2014, TAGT will become educational partners at the Nottingham University Academy of Science and Technology. Sponsored by The University of Nottingham and Sir Harry Djanogly, NUAST will provide GCSE, BTEC and A Level qualifications in the sciences, computing and engineering.

Housed in a purpose built facility in Dunkirk and supported by local industry, NUAST will provide Nottingham with a much needed specialist provision in academic and vocational education.

Torch Teaching School Alliance

An Inclusive Teaching School Alliance

The Torch Teaching School Alliance is a partnership of 22 multi-phase schools spread across the East Midlands, based at Toot Hill School, Bingham, who all share a common goal of continuous school improvement through collaboration.

The prime aim of our teaching school alliance can be distilled into two key targets:

  • Improving the quality of teaching in the classroom
  • Raising levels of attainment and progress through all key stages

We warmly invite you to consider joining us to help shape the future of our profession and the lives of the children we serve. We are an open and inclusive Teaching School Alliance welcoming schools from all phases. If you would like to find out more about the Torch Teaching School Alliance use the contact form on this site or alternatively visit our website at www.torchtsa.co.uk.

Jobs and Recruitment

The TAG Trust offers an exciting and dynamic workplace environment. We believe that staff make a difference to children and place staff development at the centre of our strategic planning. All teaching staff are offered the opportunity to complete a funded Masters in Education programme, in partnership with the University of Nottingham. Staff are offered regular training opportunities and we run a series of 'in-house' training schemes to prepare staff for career progression at all levels. The Torch Teaching School alliance offers the opportunity for wider professional networking and opportunities to lead and learn from colleagues working in a diverse range of settings.

Our staff are highly professional, work hard and are appropriately rewarded for doing an excellent job.

Current Vacancies

Torch Academy Gateway Trust

IT Infrastructure Administrator - Closing Date: 08/12/14 (11 days to go)

Download an application form in Word format or PDF format.

Contact Us

Torch Academy Gateway Trust
c/o Toot Hill School
The Banks
Nottingham NG13 8BL

01949 863 053