Character & Leadership Arc


"Human greatness does not lie in wealth or power, but in character and goodness." Anne Frank



It is a fundamental aim of King’s that we place as much emphasis on both leadership and character development as we do on academic success. Good leaders are people who have a good vision of where they are going in life, are articulate in that they have the ability to communicate and align people with that vision and the confidence to take people with them. They also display both integrity and humility. At the heart of the academy therefore it is the firm belief that we must aim to create moments when our students can see and believe in themselves as never before and to translate such moments into lessons for everyday life. In order to unlock leadership potential in our young people, leadership is delivered through five components: theoretical leadership, practical leadership, enterprise, service and professionalism.

Foundation Programme

Leadership is delivered as part of all students’ core curriculum. Leadership theory is delivered by King’s Academic Tutors through novel and exciting leadership packages written by subject matter experts within the Great Schools Trust. This bespoke Leadership allows students to learn and develop a deeper understanding of the basics of leadership and becoming a leader. Furthermore, how to become a better follower and team member. The practical application of leadership is delivered through a numseveralol-based activities through enrichment and Super Learning Days, discovery and adventure on the Character Residentials in Year 7 and 8 to North Wales and the Lake District and in wider school life through leadership opportunities and positions. 

Senior Programme

From Year 9 all students begin their Duke of Edinburgh’s (DofE) Award. Students continue to study Leadership theory as part of their core curriculum through the Great Schools Trust leadership curriculum. This provides our students with a leadership trajectory from Years 7 through to 11 they link their Character lessons to leadership and develop concrete connections to both subjects.   For practical leadership development, students will continue to undertake their DofE to complete their silver by the end of Year 11. Those in the Combined Cadet Force for enrichment also have leadership opportunities by becoming Non-commissioned officers (NCOs) forming part of the leadership structure and are role models to the junior cadets and inform training and delivery across the Trust. Within wider school life there continue to be opportunities to develop students’ leadership and influence the King’s experience.

Our Repertoire

At King’s Bolton, we use the word ‘repertoire’ to refer to the broad range of personal skills and cultural capital that we believe will enable our pupils to become ‘Successful Citizens’. These can be distilled into a few key areas:

  • Character – through ‘Legacy’ statements, we teach pupils to determine what they see success as. Our ASPIRE values then explicitly teach them the qualities of character needed to succeed anywhere. This permeates through everything we do at King’s and is typified in the House Competition, where pupils compete in a vast range of areas to earn points for their houses.
  • Leadership – we understand the need for people to be drivers of change in their communities; therefore, we explicitly teach the skills of leadership to enable them to be the change they want to see.
  • Health and Happiness – we know that people only perform at their best when they are healthy and happy; therefore, we use a knowledge-rich PSHE programme to ensure that pupils are equipped to deal with the physical and mental challenges that life presents them. Furthermore, a positive approach to mental health, including building mental resilience is embedded across the school curriculum, as part of our commitment to a whole-school approach to mental health
  • Culturally Sensitive – we know that a broad cultural knowledge is a huge advantage in life. We’re also aware that conflict often arrives from misunderstandings about other cultures. Through our Cultural Passport, we aim to give pupils the broadest possible cultural repertoire to enable them to see the world with open eyes and appreciate the array of life’s experiences.
  • Discerning Citizens – by explicitly teaching intellectual habits (such as bias and critical thinking) and through the citizenship element of our PSHE programme, we create pupils that use their critical faculties to stand up for British Values.
  • Public speaking – we know that having the confidence to speak in front of people is something that many people don’t develop until later in life and this can be hugely inhibiting. We give pupils the support they need to speak publicly whether it’s delivering a speech or reciting from our collection of poems.