Cumberland School

Cumberland offers a truly specialist approach split across two campuses, which each cater for a specific cohort of pupil need.

“Every parent worries when having to choose a new school for their child, especially when they have been unhappy and struggled at other schools. However, when I visited Cumberland School all this worry was taken away from me. My son has achieved so much in his time here and it is so lovely to see him smile and enjoy school. The staff are brilliant and care so much.”


Welcome to Cumberland School

Cumberland School is an independent, specialist day school in Lancashire providing high quality education for girls and boys aged 11 to 18.  The school meets the needs of a diverse group of students with a range of complex learning needs, social and emotional difficulties and challenging behaviours.

Cumberland School has a history of achieving where other schools have failed and realising positive outcomes for some of the most challenging young people.  An outstanding school, in every sense of the word, which through an extensive development to a dual campus model has broadened its offer to incorporate specialisms in both Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) needs.

The Bridge Campus and the Beacon Campus both offer outstanding teaching, therapeutic support and vocational pathways which positions Cumberland as a school that is striving to go beyond outstanding.

Our Awards

Our Aims & Ethos

At Cumberland School we are committed to giving our students a creative, caring and innovative learning environment for them to achieve their full potential in their education and developing their social communication.

Cumberland is dedicated to:

  • Providing opportunities for pupils to learn and achieve;
  • Promoting pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development;
  • Preparing young people to progress to their next stage of development, be it education, employment or training, with enthusiasm, motivation and optimism for the future; and
  • Encouraging the development of independent young people equipped with the skills and qualities to make a positive contribution to society.

Cumberland School at a Glance

  1. ADHD, ASC, Asp, SEMH
  2. 11 - 18
  3. Day, 52 Week
  4. Boys & Girls

" 'This school helps you get back on track' is a typical comment from one student."


Below are just some of the key features that pupils can experience at Cumberland School:

  • A dual campus model offering specialist learning environments for SEMH and ASD.
  • The Bridge Campus: A specialist provision with a dedicated curriculum and environment to better meet the needs of pupils with ASD and associated complex needs.
  • The Beacon Campus: A purpose built learning environment and vocational centre for pupils with SEMH.
  • Small class groups (maximum 8 pupils)
  • Designated School/Home Liaison Officer to enable consistent communication with parents and carers and to support induction for new pupils.
  • In-house Speech and Language Therapist, Person Centred Therapist, Occupational Therapist and Educational Psychologist, supported by the wider Witherslack Group Therapy Team.
  • All pupils have a dedicated Individual Team around the Child (ITAC) which establishes a truly supportive environment.
  • A broad vocational offer which includes Motor Vehicle Engineering, a range of Construction qualifications, Media Studies, Catering, Music, Digital Creativity, Horticulture and Small Animal Care.

Our children’s homes

Our homes provide complete 52 week wrap around care. We are partnered with the following Witherslack Group children's homes:

Our SEN Information Report

As a parent or carer we understand you will have plenty of questions when considering the best school for your child.

Our SEN Information Report (Local Offer) attempts to answer many of these, but you can visit the rest of our web site to find out more. We will also be happy to answer any questions over the phone or arrange for you and your child to visit the school, so please just get in touch.

View here

Message from the Head Teacher

Cumberland School provides highly specialised, integrated education and therapeutic support for pupils in the North West of England.

I believe we have an outstanding track record in meeting the needs of young people with complex social, emotional and behavioural difficulties. Many of our pupils present with additional co-existing conditions, such as ADHD, ASC, Attachment Disorder, speech and language difficulties and specific learning difficulties. 

We very much adopt a ‘can do’ philosophy. This means that all staff in our school have a passion and conviction that our pupils are able to achieve what their potential suggests, and endeavour to do all in our power, and beyond, to ensure this happens.

We are always optimistic about our pupils’ continual success, progress and achievement. We encourage all pupils to have high aspirations and accept no restriction on what is possible for them. We formulate highly individualised timetables at Key Stage 4 which are designed to help them develop and achieve within their chosen pathway and also to offer them the best opportunities in further education and/or employment in the future.

Christopher Newiss (Beacon) and Sue Gill (Bridge)

Head Teacher

What we’ve been up to at Cumberland School

World Book Day celebrated in style

Pupils and staff from Cumberland School’s Bridge Campus recently celebrated World Book Day. Here, Rebecca Taylor, English Teacher catches us up on what happened. On Thursday 7th March we celebrated World Book Day. Last year the day was ...

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