At Emmanuel Schools Foundation we provide an education of character underpinned by our Christian ethos. As a ‘character-first’ foundation we strive to cultivate good character as an end in itself; this raises expectations and supports high levels of performance. Our work is characterised by the pursuit of excellence as we seek to make the most of the gifts and talents we have been given. We believe in human beings’ outstanding potential, creativity and capacity for good as each one is made ‘in the image of God’. We also acknowledge we all need instruction, motivation and practice if we are to nurture the virtues underpinning good character. We gain hope for the future as we show gratitude for what we have now. We practise the virtue of love as we act unselfishly for the good of others and are able to forgive. We exercise wisdom as we choose the right course of action and display integrity as we are truthful with ourselves and others. We gain fortitude and courage as we rise to challenges, learning to overcome adversity and to develop resilience. We develop self-control as we regulate our emotions and impulses and show humility as we are teachable and keen to learn from our mistakes. We act with justice as we treat others with respect and fairness.  Our inspiration for these virtues of love, wisdom, courage, fairness, self-control, humility and integrity is the life and ministry of Jesus Christ.

In May 2022, we were delighted to be awarded the Kitemark+ award from the Association of Character Education in recognition of the emphasis that is placed on holistic all-through character growth. This award places us as a Regional Hub for the North East, along with Morpeth First School. You can read more about this award in our May newsletter to parents.


In many ways a name seems like a simple thing, after all we all have one and there are plenty to choose from, yet when you realise that a single word conveys many meanings, when you understand that it represents a person or an institution to the rest of the world, and when you remember that this simple word creates an all important ‘first impression’, choosing a name can be somewhat tricky! As we develop as an Academy, however, it is becoming clear that our name could not have been better chosen.

Bede was a monk and scholar from the Golden Age of Northumbria, the eighth century AD. He was granted the title ‘venerable’ and later sainted for his theological treatises and his contribution to the learning of his time. In this way, it seems that Bede Academy is named perfectly for its students. In Bede they find someone whose natural wonder inspired a desire to uncover knowledge and meaning. Match this with his sense of endeavour, and our students have a man of great learning who bequeathed to us our first history of England, the BC/AD dating system, understanding of the tides and the number of days in a year, the dating of Easter, and knowledge of the earth and its place in our solar system. Overall, Bede can show our young scholars the tremendous satisfaction of hard work and its long term benefits.

Yet Bede Academy is also named for its staff. In Bede they find an example of a man who loved to educate. Bede said that teaching was his ‘delight’ and the affection in which he was held by his students must be inspiration to all who work in our Academy. Beyond all this, Bede Academy is named for its community. Our name honours one of Northumberland’s most important figures and reflects the inspiring history of our county. Yet even this is not all there is in this name.

Bede Academy is also well-named because of the values it seeks to instill. Bede followed his diverse interests with a sense of humility; his hope, determination and purpose led him to great achievements, yet he only ever wrote a few lines about himself. Ultimately, of course, Bede Academy is named to honour God, for in Bede we find a man who placed the Word of God at the centre of his life and sought, in all he did, to glorify the Creator who blessed him with such gifts. In short, we have come to see that our name was chosen out of respect for a man who valued and excelled in all the things we esteem. Bede was a man of character, intellect and heart. We are Bede by name because we aspire to be Bede by nature.

“Prepare me to carry your presence to the busy world”​



Aidan was born in Ireland in the early 7th century and grew up in western Scotland. He lived at the same time as Oswald and it is possible the two men knew each other growing up. Oswald invited Aidan to come and help convert the people of Northumbria to Christianity.



Aidan demonstrated great determination. Despite one of his brother monks calling the Northumbrians ‘obstinate’ meaning they would not change their ways and listen to their message about Christianity, Aidan continued in his work for several decades and by his death had founded many monasteries and taught a new generation to continue his work.



Cuthbert was born in Northumbria and was taught by Aidan to spread Christianity throughout Northumbria. He was a central figure in the debates over how Christianity should be practiced, playing a role in bringing the Roman and Irish Churches closer together.



Cuthbert showed great humility throughout his life. Despite wanting to live a solitary life of prayer on the Farne Islands, he gave this up to become leader of the monastery at Lindisfarne, also demonstrating honourable purpose through serving others.

“Have faith and wholeheartedly trust God”

“Edwin was a man of unusual wisdom and moderation, and his reign was marked by justice and prosperity.”



Edwin, was the King of Deira and Bernicia – which later became known as Northumbria – from about 616 until his death. He converted to Christianity and was baptised in 627. After he fell at the Battle of Hatfield Chase, he was venerated as a saint.






Oswald had a difficult early life, fleeing his home in Northumbria after his uncle seized the crown and growing up in western Scotland. He took rule of Northumbria following his uncle’s death. His reign saw him bring Christianity to Northumbria.



Oswald was a person who showed integrity, staying away and doing the right thing even when some might have accused him of lacking courage. In the end his determination and courage enabled him to win back Northumbria.  He then never gave up trying to keep Northumbria safe and lost his life fighting for the Kingdom.

“Give the people the food from our table….we all eat again tomorrow.”

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