Principal's Review 2012
2011/12 has been another busy and productive year at the Academy. With such a competitive jobs market, never has it been so important for young people to leave school well qualified and with the right personal qualities which employers require.
We aim to offer an aspirational and supportive framework where students can thrive and develop these qualities. We think this is best achieved by trying to strike a balance between academic achievement and extra-curricular opportunities. The annual Awards Evening reflects this and features a number of students who are being rewarded for their hard work, commitment and enthusiasm across a wide range of different subjects. This review captures some of the highlights of a busy year.
Our Year 11 students should be very proud of their GCSE results which are a reflection of hard work, the support of parents and of the dedication of the staff at the Academy. 95% of Year 11 students achieved 5 A* - C grades and we are delighted to welcome back so many of these students into Post 16 Education this year.
As in the previous year, Post 16 results were excellent with a 98.6% pass rate and our highest average points score of 328 per student. We had some outstanding individual performances and are delighted that all of our Year 13 leavers were able to find either a place at university, employment or continue in further education or training. A full list of student destinations is included towards the back of this programme.
Charity and Community work
Students have worked very hard over the last twelve months in raising nearly £12,000 for charities. As a result a range of global, national and local organisations have benefited from this. In carrying out this work students have hopefully demonstrated a sense of compassion and sympathy for those less fortunate than themselves.
Internationally our main charity focus was for Sport Relief and over £2,000 was raised for this charity, while just last month £2,300 was raised for Children in Need. Closer to home over £5,000 was raised for the James Cook Neo-Natal Ward. This was led by one student, Ellie Dalton, now in Year 12 and represents an outstanding contribution to the community for which she was recently awarded the Star Fundraising Award at Middlesbrough’s Volunteering Star Awards.
In addition to this vital fundraising work, the tireless efforts of the Academy’s Eco Council were recognised when the Academy was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award from Middlesbrough Environment City.
For the first time in 2012, the Academy introduced three Summer School activities. These were offered in Sport, Outdoor Learning and the Arts and were well attended by Year 6 students who really benefited from being in the Academy for a week over the summer engaging in an enrichment activity that they enjoy.
We had on average eighty students a day in the Academy for the Summer Schools and intend to increase the number of activities on offer for this summer.
2012 was a fantastic year for sport in this country following the hugely successful Olympics and Paralympics. The legacy of the games was to ‘Inspire a Generation’ and sport makes a huge contribution to the Academy. A year’s worth of sporting activity was encapsulated in our Annual Sports Awards which took place in October this year. In a very successful evening over three hundred students were in attendance and the event showcased the many successes and sporting achievements of the past year. The award winners were as follows:
- Key Stage 3 Sports Personality: Rachel Carter
- Key Stage 4 Sports Personality: Lewis Boyce
- Key Stage 5 Sports Personality: Matthew Gornall
They were presented with awards from Tim Prendergast (London 2012 Paralympian and former Paralympic Gold Medal winner). In continuing the Olympic theme our under fifteen Girls Hockey team got the opportunity to meet Bronze medal winners Alex Danson and Beth Storry during a hockey master class at the University of Teesside. While our own Sports Day was enhanced by an Olympic Torch which is now displayed in the Academy.
Enrichment and Learning Outside the Classroom
While there have been too many enrichments to mention all of them this evening, our enrichment programme combined with our commitment to educational visits has ensured that students once again have had the benefit of excellent opportunities. International visits are always a real highlight for students and often provide memorable moments of their school careers which last a lifetime. Over the last twelve months, Year 10 History students have visited the First World War battlefields, Art students have visited Venice and Florence, a Hockey and Football tour visited Holland, Modern Foreign Language students visited Paris, Religious Studies students visited Auschwitz and our annual ski trip took place in Austria.
As recognition of the Academy’s commitment to extra-curricular provision we were delighted to be the first school in the country to receive the Learning Outside the Classroom Gold Award this year. We also received recognition in the area of enrichment through a Royal visit this year. In September the Academy was privileged to receive HRH the Duke of Kent, who spent a day with us looking at Outdoor Learning, Sport and Art.
2011/12 was a very successful year for the Arts. In addition to the inaugural Arts Summer School we also had a Christmas Musical Concert, a Summer Dance Show, an A Level Art Exhibition and the year culminated with a fabulous performance of Joseph.
This production reflected the combined efforts of over one hundred students and forty staff. It played for three nights in front of a combined audience of over five hundred people, a really inspiring end to the last academic year.
Overall, it has been an extremely busy and productive year for the Academy. I would like to take this opportunity to thank staff, parents and students for all of their hard work and support over the last twelve months as you look forward to a successful 2013.
Mr P Latham