The assertive mentoring programme has been introduced at Shirebrook Academy to support students in gaining their aspirational target grades in all subjects. All Year 11 students have been assigned a mentor who will meet with them at least once a month to review their progress towards their target grades and offer support when targets are not being met.

What is assertive mentoring?

• Target setting
• Tracking
• Mentoring
• Intervention
• Checking
• Target setting

“The targets are then given to teachers who are encouraged to change their students’ targets upwards, but they are not allowed to revise them downwards. The rule is that the under-achiever is pulled up towards the aspirational targets. Targets are never revised downwards towards the under-achiever”.

“There is no point in students trying to bluff their way out. And crucial to the effectiveness of mentoring is its assertive style. Whilst supportive, it is never simply a cozy chat as was the case with the school’s pre 1998 soft mentoring systems. Pupils need to feel that the regular one to one conversations with their mentors will be evidence driven, business like and have direct benefits”

“Mentors check to ensure the interventions are implemented and that they are having the desired impact. If the intervention isn’t working, students are seen again by mentors and new interventions agreed. The systems are relentless. Students are not allowed to give up on themselves”

“AM checking systems are rigorous and robust. There are no presumptions that commitments will be acted upon unless checked. This gives AM power and forcefulness”