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School of Sanctuary

Sewell Park Academy is a welcoming place for all. To ensure we are recognised as a safe place for everyone we are working towards becoming a School of Sanctuary. Staff at Sewell Park are committed to supporting everyone within our community to educate and inform them of what it means to be seeking sanctuary. By doing so we aim to ensure everyone is equal, feels valued and experiences a welcoming environment when they enter our school.

A School of Sanctuary is a school that is welcoming and offers a place of safety. It is proud to offer sanctuary to asylum seekers and refugees who are fleeing violence and persecution. Schools of Sanctuary is part of the City of Sanctuary movement. Norwich was awarded City of Sanctuary status and joined the movement in 2016.

By working towards School of Sanctuary status we aim to: 
  • Ensure everyone, especially those seeking sanctuary, feels welcome and safe within our schooand our community. 

  • Promote the voice of sanctuary seekers and celebrate their contribution to our community. 

  • Educate all of our community on the experiences of those who are displaced and combat stereotypes of those seeking sanctuary. 


All new EAL learners, refugee and asylum seeking students are made to feel welcome. Where possible we
use a buddy system to ensure new learners are able to form connections with those who speak their first
language. Prior to starting students will be given a tour and meet with key people. On arrival students English level is assessed and this continues to be monitored termly. These assessments are used to ensure the students have the correct intervention offered to them by our Raising Achievement EAL Support Assistant. 


All students are invited to attend parents’ evening, and ‘key workers’ are also encouraged to attend. Parents of EAL learners can request a meeting to follow if necessary where an interpreter can support communication between teachers, students and family members. If required we are also able to translate written communication to parents and carers. 


School of Sanctuary projects & events

In June we celebrated Refugee Week and A Day of Welcome. 20 students from year 7 and 8 were involved in a fundraising activity on Friday 16th June where £34.59 was raised for Welcome Wheels. The following week all students were part of an assembly for Refugee Week which also saw the launch of our mission to become a School of Sanctuary in our community. 


Useful Links

  • UNHCR - explore the latest data on refugees, asylum seekers and those who have been displaced. 

  • Norfolk Schools of Sanctuary - Explore the schools that have been awarded School of Sanctuary status and discover resources.

  • Norwich City of Sanctuary - Discover more information about how Norwich supports refugees and asylum seekers and learn more about the movement. 


If you would like more information or would like to be involved in our mission to become a School of Sanctuary, please contact Miss Lemmon ( 

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