IRIS Learning Trust was formed in June 2018 and is based in the North East of England. We are proud to serve our communities and aim to offer outstanding educational provision.
The Trust believes that to be successful and promote a culture of excellence and aspiration, we need to place improving the lives and outcomes of children at the heart of everything we do.


create a culture of high expectation and commitment to success


through our daily work secure excellent academies for our local communities

grow and learn together

work with children and families to create great places of learning for all

IRIS Learning Trust

Corporation Road




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Please contact Delivery Team on
0113 3200 750 if you have any queries.

Corporation Road, Sunderland, Tyne And Wear SR2 8PL

0191 5002999

Valley Road Academy

friday feeling

Get that Friday Feeling ! 

Every Friday Mrs Curle takes the wheel in one of our mini buses and we go and explore our fantastic area.

We travel around our local region and discover the fabulous places  we have right on our doorstep....

Autumn 2018

The squishy, sticky, glorious mud!

Our last group of year 4 children from Mrs Pearce’s class, enjoyed jumping in muddy, wet puddles as we walked around Hawthorne Dene.  Well done everyone for bring with them to school a change of clothes!  We listen to the squishing notices that the mud made and questioned why it smelt so bad.

We played hide and seek in the woods, which we all thoroughly enjoyed.  Tyler Davies, was crowned our hiding champion.  He managed to hide behind a very big log and even in the middle of a holy bush.

Our challenge was to make a den to fit each member of your group in.  The children really enjoyed this activity and worked well in their teams.  Each den showed imagination and determination.  Well done to all of the teams.  Take a look at our photographs, to see what an exciting morning we had.

 Year 4 explore Hawthorne Dene

The rain had stopped and the sun was shining, at last, so off we went to explore Hawthorne Dene.  It was very muddy and we had lots of fun splashing in it and making footprints.  We explored the woods and found a nice spot to build dens.

The children split off into team and worked together to build a den for them to play in.  They really enjoyed this activity, have a look at our photographs and see for yourself how exciting our morning was.

We have that Friday Feeling!


This term had seen years six and five, enjoying the adventures of Friday Feeling.  We have worked together with Ian Graham, who is our local Coastal Ranger.  We have explored our local beaches, looking at the coast line rock formation, sea life, pollution, flora and fauna and even discovered that there are wild plants growing at Hendon beach that we can eat! Our children were amazed at how interesting our local beaches actually are.  We took part in a litter pick at Hendon beach and enjoyed creating beach are at the end of our session.


We were also very lucky and enjoyed a great visit to Sunderland Coast guard station.  We met the coast guards, tried on their equipment and even experienced them being called out on a live shout, which was very exciting. To end our session, we visited Roker beach and built WW2 bunkers and explored the beach.  It was a chilly day, but the children really enjoyed being creative and exploring.


Next, we went off to the woods to explore and take part in Forest School activities.  After a short drive to Hawthorne Dene, we followed the woodland path and explored.  We talked about Autumn and how the trees and animals survive our Autumn and Winter months. We discovered that a stick, is actually not a stick.  I can be a wizard’s wand, a medieval axe or even a false leg from a pirate that has sailed into the bay.  Our imaginations were on fire that morning. 


Our Forest School activities saw us building dens for trolls that live in the woods and making Harry Potter broom sticks, which we took back to school and added them to our amazing Harry Potter literacy display.


Wow, haven’t we been busy!   Have a look at our amazing photographs and watch this space for more exciting adventures.