de Stafford School Grow, Learn, Believe, and Achieve
“Students are safe and secure in the school, and they feel well looked after. Good systems are in place to offer help and support, sometimes involving external agencies when appropriate. A very high proportion of parents responding to Parent View afﬁrmed that their child is looked after well at school and is happy here. Parents’ faith in the school is well founded.” Ofsted, October 2015
Grow, Learn, Believe and Achieve
Welcome to de Stafford I am delighted to welcome you to de Stafford. We are a vibrant, smaller than average secondary school for students aged 11-16 years old where all members of the community are highly valued and respected as individuals. Educating children is without doubt a great responsibility and privilege. We are committed to ensuring de Stafford provides all students with an outstanding learning experience so that they are fully prepared for the challenges of the modern world; where excellent examination results are achieved within a structure that supports the development of highly aspirational and confident young adults, comfortable of their place within society and the positive contribution they can make to it.
As headteacher, I am privileged to work with an incredibly dedicated and talented staff who are highly driven in delivering the best possible education for our students. Our relentless focus on learning and achievement ensures lessons are underpinned by creativity, innovation and challenge. Without doubt, good exam results are essential; they open doors and empower children to achieve their dreams. However, at de Stafford we also believe in a well-rounded education where a strong focus on examination outcomes is allied with an extensive and diverse programme of enrichment opportunities.
This prospectus aims to provide you with an insight into the character and ethos of de Stafford. However, to fully appreciate what the school has to offer, we warmly invite you to come and see us in action. We adopt an open door philosophy and I would actively encourage you to visit the school as many times as you like. Every day is Open Day at de Stafford and we welcome visitors into our community throughout the year. Jeremy Garner Headteacher
Welcome At de Stafford, we hold high expectations of all our students in every respect. We aspire to provide students with an outstanding learning experience each and every day. Every decision that we make is centred on their learning and achievement as we seek to enable each one to meet and exceed their potential. Our incredibly dedicated and talented staff never give up on a student. We have an outstanding pastoral system, which is focused on ensuring that our students succeed and leave us as confident, articulate and aspirational young adults. The success of our school is based on a partnership of integrity and mutual respect.
Grow, Learn, Believe and Achieve Our school motto articulates all we aspire to in every lesson and for every student. We want students to enjoy their learning and as a result achieve and succeed in all aspects of their academic and professional careers. We strive to ensure that their experience is founded on our eight core values: • • • •
Learning & Achievement Enjoyment & Community Challenge & Opportunity Respect & Integrity
This prospectus aims to give you an insight into our character and ethos. However, to fully appreciate everything de Stafford School can offer, we warmly invite you to come and see for yourself. On behalf of all the staff and students, we look forward to welcoming you and your family soon. Jeremy Garner Headteacher
A Focus on Learning & Progress Learning is our overriding priority. Through our engaging curriculum and highly qualified staff, we strive to provide a stimulating experience for every student, every lesson, every day by adopting a dynamic and personalised approach that helps students to become active learners. Shaped to the needs of individuals, our curriculum ensures all students make good progress on their unique learning journey. Our focus, not only on academic excellence but also the softer skills essential to meaningful employability, ensures that we open doors to the future and raise aspirations for all of our students.
Our teachers all demonstrate a real passion for their subject areas and are committed to the continuous improvement of their own practice by actively engaging with our bespoke professional development programme, including the opportunity for further study at Masters degree level, as well as sharing strategies and resources with colleagues in local schools. We have rigorous procedures in place to track student progress throughout their journey with us so that we can identify potential under-achievement very early on in the process. Our interventions menu is tailored specifically to meet the needs of students and includes one-to-one mentoring, additional support or providing
access to an alternative curriculum. We set students aspirational targets based on their ability and prior attainment but there is certainly no ceiling imposed. We firmly believe that expectation shapes performance and we guide, challenge and support our students every step of the way so that they achieve the very best possible outcomes.
â€œTeaching is good overall. Teachers make effective use of their good subject knowledge, together with accurate assessment, to target appropriate learning activities which meet the studentsâ€™ needs wellâ€? Ofsted, October 2015
Achievement for All Our curriculum is broad and balanced throughout both Key Stage 3 and 4. We strongly believe in being a fully inclusive school and ensure that we have the curriculum in place to support such a philosophy. We challenge those who are academically very able, as evidenced by the quality of GCSE results at the top end, but have adapted the curriculum to effectively meet the needs of those who find learning more difficult. We are committed to the concept of personalisation whereby every student within our care accesses a pathway that is appropriate to their needs in order to achieve their own level of personal excellence. We are proud that we regularly provide students with the platform to go on and read undergraduate degrees at the top Russell Group universities but we take equal satisfaction from seeing former students thrive on more vocational pathways.
We have a dedicated team of specialists with a proven track record in providing tailored support for students with disabilities or additional needs, whether they require more challenge or extra help in their studies. This may include extended curriculum tasks, small group work or referral to the schoolâ€™s learning support department. Our More Able Coordinator works closely with subject staff to ensure a stimulating programme for our high ability students, including outreach work at Reigate College and the opportunity to undertake Oxbridge taster visits.
“ Outcomes are consistently good in most subject areas. Teachers monitor students’ learning and provide a range of helpful support and guidance for those who lag behind. This means that students achieve well in English, mathematics and across a range of other subjects. Students’ learning in science and in resistant materials is secure but is not as strong as in other areas because there are still some variations in the quality of teaching.” Ofsted, October 2015
Outstanding Care and Support We pride ourselves on an outstanding pastoral system which enables students to learn well and make excellent progress. We are committed to providing all of our students with the opportunity to grow, learn and flourish within a calm, happy and purposeful school environment based on a culture of high expectations and mutual respect. Underpinning this area is the emphasis we place on the unique identity of each respective year group and the individual SAM (Social and Academic Mentor) groups within them. It is the caring and supportive pastoral system, complemented by the development of enduring friendship groups, which ensures studentsâ€™ feel happy and safe, allowing them to flourish in their time at the school. The school also benefits greatly from a very positive relationship with parents, working together in
our common aim to encourage and support every child. We firmly believe that the building blocks are in place for all students to experience long-term happiness and success with us here at de Stafford but perhaps the most pressing and immediate concern is how quickly they will settle into the secondary school environment. Each year we receive very positive feedback in terms of our transition arrangements and we view a successful induction programme, which includes a summer school in the holiday before entry, as the first step on the road to happiness and fulfilment.
â€œSocial and academic mentoring time is used well, to monitor and support individual studentsâ€™ progress and reflect on current affairs. The well-taught curriculum, combined with regular opportunities for learning outside of the school day, ensures that students gain a good awareness of moral, social and spiritual issues. There are fewer opportunities to learn about the diversity of cultures and beliefs in modern Britain and so students understanding of these areas is more limitedâ€? Ofsted, October 2015
Calm, Purposeful Environment â€œStudentsâ€™ behaviour is good. The vast majority of students behave in a mature and respectful manner in lessons and around the school.â€? Ofsted, October 2015 Creating and fostering a culture of mutual respect and support where students feel safe and supported in their learning is absolutely fundamental to all that we do. Visitors to the school invariably comment on the calm, purposeful atmosphere that pervades the corridors and classrooms. For students to make progress, both socially and academically, it is vital that they can work in a positive climate conducive to learning, within the classroom and beyond. Our code of conduct is not up for negotiation; when borne out in practice it ensures the focus is on high quality learning which enables students at all levels to make progress. We take a proactive stance towards managing student
behaviour, rewarding and praising positive behaviour whenever possible. However, we cannot and do not tolerate disruption to lessons; any concerns are dealt with quickly to avoid escalation and we will invariably involve parents to support this process.
Opportunities and Enrichment Making sure your child is thriving academically is naturally of fundamental importance to you and to us. We need to ensure doors are left wide open as a result of the academic outcomes they achieve here. Of equal importance, however, is the development of the whole child. We genuinely believe in a well-rounded education where an extensive and diverse range of enrichment opportunities complement academic success. All of our students are offered a wide choice of enrichment and extension activities to broaden their minds and develop self-confidence. We encourage students to join in and take full advantage of every opportunity made available to them.
We run a wide variety of educational trips and visits, both home and abroad, which enhance studentsâ€™ understanding of areas related to the curriculum and raises their cultural awareness. There are clubs and extra classes in all subjects and an after school study support group where students can receive help with homework and extended learning projects. We also offer a full range of provision in Drama, Music and Sport and develop leadership characteristics through accredited programmes such as the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme and Rotary Young Leadership Award.
There are numerous occasions throughout the year where our students work with the local community to foster positive links which centre around charity work through fundraising and volunteering. Our goal is for every student to engage in at least one activity on a regular basis that will expand their learning and enrich their educational experience.
“Teaching is good overall. Teachers make effective use of their good subject knowledge, together with accurate assessment, to target appropriate learning activities which meet the students’ needs well” Ofsted, October 2015
â€œParents and their children are rightly proud of the school. They recognise that it offers a caring community where students are kept safe and their welfare matters greatly.â€? Ofsted, October 2015
Sixth Form Provision “High-quality careers information, and good links with local colleges, ensure that students are confident and well placed for the next stage of their education, employment or training” Ofsted, October 2015 de Stafford is an 11-16 school but we have three post-16 partner colleges with whom we have a very close affiliation and consider to be our ‘off-site sixth form’. Through a formal partnership all students who want to progress on to Reigate College, Coulsdon College (in partnership with Reigate) or East Surrey College, and achieve the necessary grades, are guaranteed a place. Places at these high performing colleges are highly sought after but the preferred status given to de Stafford students alleviates the anxiety of being put on a long waiting list. The breadth of provision means that we are able to signpost students to a diversity of courses, ranging from the traditional academic offer to more specialised, vocational programmes of study.
Throughout the year there are a variety of opportunities for our students to engage with these post-16 opportunities, including taster days in Year 10 at each of the colleges and regular guest speakers who come in to school. As a result of our relationship with our partner colleges, we have an excellent track record of ensuring every student progresses onto a programme of learning that meets their individual needs and enables them to achieve their future goals.
de Stafford School Grow, Learn, Believe, and Achieve
Headteacher: Jeremy Garner Burntwood Lane, Caterham, Surrey CR3 5YX 01883 347818 firstname.lastname@example.org www.destafford.org.uk twitter@destafford
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