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.


26th March 2015: To propose or oppose? That is the question……...NUSA

Congratulations to all of the Year 6 and 7 students from Djanogly Strelley Academy, Brocklewood Juniors, Melbury Primary, Portland Spencer Academy and NUSA, who took part in the Nottingham Trent University Debate Day on Wednesday 25th March in the City Centre.  Based in the prestigious Newton Building, the day saw pupils work alongside debate society members from the university, who mentored the school teams through proposition and opposition points on topics such as 'Should fatty foods be banned in schools?' and 'Should our Police be armed?'.

Two teams, Portland Spencer Academy 1 and NUSA Team 2 made it through the rounds to take part in the final, to debate whether 'the UK Government should send more financial aid to poorer countries?'  After a thrilling round of opposing points, Portland Spencer Academy were awarded the win and all students were commended for their hard work and enthusiasm, being presented with a certificate. Students were given the chance to tour the university campus and to hear from real undergraduate students, what life at university is like.  We hope to see some of our students walk those same campus halls in a few years time!

23rd March 2015: Exam Preparation and Revision for SEN students - Parent support meetingToot Hill School

The session will include general tips and strategies on how to prepare for the exam period, how to encourage revision, and how to support with emotional wellbeing during a potentially stressful time.

This session is particularly suited to parents of SEN children in Year 9, 10 and 11 students.

If you are interested in attending, please contact main reception to book your place on: 01949 875550.

The session will run for 30 minutes in Learning Support, ending around 4:15pm. Tea/coffee and biscuits will be provided.

We look forward to seeing you there!

19th March 2015: Uniforms, Facebook and Video Games: Year 7 debate with their mates!NUSA

On Wednesday 11th March, Year 7 played host to Law and Public Health students from Nottingham Trent University, to learn how to take part in a formal debate.  The project aims to develop the pupils' literacy and communication skills as well as build their confidence. Debating enables people to think for themselves, to form their own opinions and to ask questions about what they know about the world. The project culminates in a Transition Debating Competition, organised by Keys to Success EIP, to be held at Nottingham Trent University on March 25th and eight Year 7 students will form the team to represent the Academy amongst Year 6 pupils from our feeder primary schools. 

Students from Class 7a, who regularly practice debating skills in their English lessons with Mrs Tice, were invited to observe a debate between university students Rhiannon and Izz A’Qeel, who were debating whether "violent video games should be banned?".  Rhiannon stood for the banning these games and spoke about the dangers of 'normalising violence', where Izz A'Qeel opposed the ban, stating that this would be a restriction of freedom of expression and denying the right to democratic discussion on these matters.  NUSA students were then questioned about their views, how the debate was conducted and were then divided into small teams to debate whether students should have to wear school uniform?

Teams then took part in a formal debate, expressing views and presenting counter arguments and the NUSA team was formed.  Eight students then went on to work with Rhiannon, Izz A'Qeel and Becky, to prepare for the competition at Trent University on 25th March.  We will update you on how the NUSA team progresses in the competition and you can find out more about debating at www.debatemate.com

19th March 2015: Year 10 Assessment WeekMeden School

All year 10 students will be sitting two mock papers week commencing 23rd March. For both they will require a pen, pencil, ruler, protractor and compasses. For the second paper 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.

18th March 2015: Book Fair Announcement and Easter Break ReadingToot Hill School

Scholastic Book Fair 2015

It has been a very busy eight days in the Learning Lounge, some of the 'Best Sellers' were 'Big Game' by Dan Smith, 'Girl Online' by Zoe Sugg, 'Middle School - Worst Years of my Life' by James Patterson, and revamped book cover classics of 'Hound of the Baskervilles', 'Frankenstein' and 'Wuthering Heights'  ...and look what we achieved...

Mrs Litherland and Ms Marris are feeling jovial, there is a tintinnabulation of bells and we are unerring in our findings.  Book Fair final figure is… £2650.41…WOW!  This will enable us to put £1935.45 worth of stock onto the LL book shelves in the weeks and months to come.

A massive thank you to all Students and Staff that have supported the fair and a herculean thanks to the students who have helped, as well.  We look forward to stocking the Learning Lounge with wonderful new books to inveigle you to come and visit us!

If you have ordered a book in the Book Fair, it may have arrived.  Please call into the Learning Lounge to collect it.

Also, Easter Break is fast approaching; have you sorted out some Holiday reads while munching on chocolate?  We have some fantastic books on our March Display, maybe one will goad you into borrowing it?

17th March 2015: Under 13s Boys RugbyDjanogly City Academy

The following boys represented the Academy in the City Schools Rugby Championships on Tuesday evening at Moderns RFC. The team managed to pick up the silver medals after beating Bluecoat and Farnborugh, then narrowly losing to Trinity School in the final.


  • Stephen Gabadyn
  • Bruno Duarte
  • Bilal Hussain
  • Mazin Abdelmomin
  • Joseph Akimbawale
  • Damargai Miller
  • Abdalla Jama

Absent but still played in the previous week:

  • Jamal Samuels
  • Tony Doig
  • Epifanio Rodrigues
  • Luke Nixon
  • Ricardo Danciou
  • Noah Tesfalem

Player of the tournament: Stephen Gabadyn

Well Done Boys
Mr Powell

16th March 2015: Year 11 Expressive Arts InterventionMeden School

As part of the GCSE Expressive Arts course we will be running two intervention sessions during the first week of the Easter holidays. The sessions will run from 9.30 until 3.30, It is compulsory for students to attend.

Each student will be given a specific date for their group to attend. The sessions will run onTuesday the 31st of March and Wednesday the 1st of April. 

During the session the students will be expected to catch up on written work, and rehearse their practical performance work. 

Please contact the drama department if any further information is required. 

16th March 2015: Return to the Forbidden PlanetMeden School

Intangible Ink proudly presents Return to the Forbidden Planet.

The performances will take place on the 25th and 26th of March at 7.00pm in the main hall. Tickets are on sale now, costing  £4.00 each and are available from the finance office. 

The students have worked extremely hard on this fantastic production, that will be sure to get you dancing in your seat! 

16th March 2015: Early Finishing due to Parents' EveningsNottingham Free School

School will be finishing at 3.30pm on these days and the school bus will be picking the students up at 3.40pm. 

16th March 2015: Great News for Elliot!Meden School

It is always wonderful to hear about the successes of our Meden students and Elliot Clogg in Year 10 is no exception.

Competing in 4 events at the Edinburgh International Meet recently, which attracted many GB swimmers including Liam Tancock, Fran Halsall and Adam Peaty, Elliot won 3 out of 4 races; 100m Backstroke, 200m Backstroke and 200m Freestyle. He came 4th in the 200 Individual Medoly.

But it doesn't end ther! He set new personal best times in each event and also went under the qualifying time for British Champs on the 200 IM which now makes a total of 7 events he has qualified for.​

Well Done Elliot, we are very proud of you!


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

Birklands School

Class Teacher - Closing Date: 27/03/15 (1 day to go)

Visit Birklands School for more information and an application form.

Toot Hill School

English - Lead Teacher of - Closing Date: 21/04/15 (26 days to go)

Visit Toot Hill School for more information and an application form.

Toot Hill School

Maths - 2nd in Department - Closing Date: 21/04/15 (26 days to go)

Visit Toot Hill School for more information and an application form.

Meden School

Relief Cleaner - Closing Date: 01/07/15 (97 days to go)

Visit Meden School for more information and an application form.

Meden School

Midday Supervisor - Closing Date: 01/07/15 (97 days to go)

Visit Meden School for more information and an application form.


Exam Invigilator - Closing Date: 31/08/15 (158 days to go)

Visit NUSA for more information and an application form.

Contact Us

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

01949 863020