The school aims to provide a high-quality, inclusive education to all students, and this includes high expectations of all. While our school offer opportunities to experience creativity, awe and wonder, we also have the high expectation that students will gain the well-developed knowledge and skills that come from hard work and hard thinking and will prepare them best for success in examinations and in later life. We plan for the highest aspirations and take great pride in our achievements. We aim to ensure that all students have positive attitudes to learning, and are all helpful, kind and dedicated members of the school and wider community.
We ensure that the curriculum we offer our students suits them and our aspirations for them, and that connections between curriculum areas are fostered and nurtured. While we are unashamed of the idea that a high-quality traditional classroom experience is often the best and most fruitful way to create students who will flourish in the rest of their lives, we also believe that this is a time for seminal, memorable experiences that do not fit into this pattern. They might visit the wonders of the world on a trip, they might overcome their fears and perform on stage, they might have a life-changing impact on those beyond our gates, but for many of our students, they will not have these experiences if we do not offer them. We want to offer our students some unforgettable spots of time.
When students do not know how to learn, teaching is fruitless. We aim for our students to become expert learners. They should be self-regulating, aware of their own progress and able to think about their own learning, but also able to lose themselves in tasks and experience ‘flow’. They should be willing to take risks and try a variety of approaches and be independent while they are doing it. They should feel the intrinsic buzz of learning for its own sake.
We aim to ensure that staff and students have positive attitudes to all learning experiences, and are self-respecting, generous and thoughtful members of the school community who believe in what we intend to achieve. Driven by values of pride, respect and kindness, our culture and ethos ensure that students build the habits of heart and mind that allow their learning to thrive through repeated and consistent practice. We want all stakeholders to work relentlessly together to achieve it with a specific set of routines that everyone commits to implementing inside and outside the classroom.
The positive ethos is underpinned by our pastoral system which promotes a proactive culture of support. Students benefit from sharing experiences with children of their own age whilst being part of a system that creates exciting opportunities to mix with other year groups. There is a clear, tutor programme which supports students’ wider development and promotes British values. Form tutors have daily contact with their tutees providing them with support, recognition of achievements and advice. They move through the years with their tutor group, watching them grow and progressing together. Strong relationships are at the heart of this system, formed between students and tutors, but also parents and tutors. Parents are encouraged to contact the form tutor whenever they have a concern. Heads of Year track and monitor behaviour and progress across the whole year group and ensure that effort and achievement are rewarded accordingly. Key Stage managers support the pastoral care of the students and play an important role in shaping students into good citizens.