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Ambitious Approach

The Ambitious Approach is the model of education practice used across all education settings to support autistic children and young people.

At St. John’s College, we have high aspirations for our learners. Our goal for all learners is that when they leave our settings they will have the opportunity to access employment, further education or training and to live as part of the community of their choice.

The Ambitious Approach is the educational approach we have developed and adopted to put quality of life at the centre of all we do. It is based upon a learner’s indisputable rights to be:

  • treated with dignity and compassion
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  • listened to
  • supported to have the best quality of life possible
  • empowered to make choices and decide on how they want to live their life.

Latest news

Read the latest about our work, and read personal stories, by our learners or relatives and staff.

The Ambitious Approach has three areas of focus:

The curriculum

The curriculum in our settings focuses on equipping learners with the knowledge and skills they need for quality of life. Learning is tailored to support autistic learners to live the life they want to lead.

Curriculum delivery

We recruit and train staff in our settings to provide high-quality teaching. This includes having a deep knowledge of the subjects they teach, specialist knowledge of how autistic learners learn best and creating environments that support and nurture physical and psychological needs.


To afford dignity, respect and compassion, learners are placed at the core of a setting so their voices are heard and so we can support them with what is important to them. Staff in the settings work closely together, sharing their expertise, to address barriers to learning and support the best possible outcomes.

We are constantly developing, searching for and open to new ethical and evidence-based approaches that help our young people. We share our experiences and knowledge with others to enhance expertise in the field of autism education.

St. John’s College is subject to Ofsted inspections, which are published online, on our website and by Ofsted. Our residential homes are regulated by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

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