Welcome to Poplar Adolescent unit and thank you for visiting our website.

We know that the young people who come to us are facing enormous difficulties and that they, their families and their carers need support and understanding.

The Education staff include qualified teachers and skilled teaching assistants who have a wealth of knowledge and experience. Teamwork is a key component of our ethos and we work closely with other professionals within and beyond the unit.

We have particularly strong links with our sister unit in the North of Essex, The St Aubyn Centre Therapeutic Education Department. Simon Turnnidge, Executive Head Teacher across both units, ensures that we share expertise and support between the two teams, benefitting both.   

Our young people are all individuals. For some, coming to education will be a break from the other pressures in their lives and they will be keen to continue studying with us in preparation for returning to their own community schools. Others may have found school difficult and it will be our job to help them identify the problems and work towards solutions. Some young people will have dropped out of school altogether and, in these cases, we will be working with them to try to find a route back into education, employment or training in a way that is manageable and worthwhile for them. We have specialist teachers in many subjects including English, maths and science, and we support all levels of study from basic skills to A level.

We want all of our students to make progress in academic achievement and in the areas of resilience, self-esteem and hope for the future. Our personal, social and health education provision is a particular strength of our curriculum.

Over the years, we have worked with many young people who have gone on to build stable, fulfilling lives and it is this belief in the possibility of recovery that keeps us optimistic and full of hope for the young people we work with.

This website will serve as an introduction to our school; if you require any further information please feel free to contact us.

Charlotte Baulch - Head of School, Poplar Adolescent Unit (Education)

Simon Turnnidge - Executive Headteacher, Poplar Adolescent Unit (Education) and St Aubyn Centre Therapeutic Education Department .




At Poplar we provide a safe and supportive environment where all young people can find hope and self-belief and build resilience through a broad, flexible and ambitious curriculum.  Our creative approach is individual and focused on the needs and potential of every young person as they move towards discharge from hospital and a positive future.


Comments from our recent Ofsted (Section 8) Inspection Report dated 11th/12th July 2023:  
"Pupils experience a safe haven that gives them hope for a different future. Their teachers provide opportunities to turn this hope into reality."
"Pupils know that their path towards new knowledge and skills is never a path that they take alone. Staff are there for them every step of the way, keeping close watch over their wellbeing." 
"The curriculum is broad and ambitious."
"Poplar Adolescent Unit continues to be a good school. There is enough evidence of improved performance to suggest that the school could be judged outstanding if we were to carry out a graded (section 5) inspection now."



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