Students working together
We have strong links with our feeder primary schools and have built in ways of helping our students make the transition from primary school to our Academy.
All students who apply to the Academy are tested to see which ability band they are in. We also use the information from primary schools to support the test results. This enables us to offer places available in our five bands and to ensure that students are given appropriate support.
All students are invited to our Induction Day in the summer term before they start in September. Students spend this day getting to know their tutor, classmates and the Academy. We can resolve any problems and set the students' minds at rest so they do not spend the holiday worrying. In September the students spend two further days at the Academy before the rest of the students begin. This gives them a chance to get to know where their lessons are, who their teachers are and how the Academy works.
We are strongly committed to working closely with parents to ensure that students are encouraged in all aspects of their education and make the most of the opportunities offered them.
This partnership begins with a welcoming evening in November when all Year 7 students and their parents are invited to the Academy to meet their Form Tutor to ensure students have settled in to Academy life and are progressing well.
Once students are established in the Academy, parents are invited in to a consultation evening every year to discuss progress in the different subjects.
There are other evenings for parents throughout the year, which provide information and opportunities for discussion. Examples are the study support evenings providing ideas of how parents can help students in their studies and examination preparation.
More frequent contact is maintained through the Academy Diary. This is used by students to record homework, and we ask parents to sign it weekly to show their satisfaction with the work that has been done. It can also be used as a simple way of contacting the Form Tutor.
How Students are grouped
Each student is placed in a Tutor Group when they start at the Academy. The tutor is the teacher who takes the register every morning and afternoon and is responsible for monitoring the academic and personal progress of the students in their class. Year Managers lead each team of tutors in one particular year.
In year 7, students are taught in ability sets in English, Maths and Science, and in reduced size groups for ICT and design & technology. In most other subjects they are taught in their tutor groups.
Students are placed in ability sets for most subjects from year 8 onwards. The timetable is organised so that there is flexibility for students to change sets according to their achievements.
Beyond the classroom
Many clubs and societies are organised for the benefit of our students, some of which have been mentioned. They are intended to provide opportunities for students to extend their academic skills, develop socially and have fun! The following gives an indication of the variety of other activities students have been involved in.
Clubs and support clinics are run in the following areas:
Maths, English, Science, Geography, History, Design & Technology, Modern Languages, Art, Business & Information Technology,
Integrated Learning, EAL support, Homework and the Library.
Societies and other activities:
Amnesty International Group, Drama, Instrumental Tuition,
Choir, Band, Chess, and Debating.
Swimming, Netball, Football, Basketball, Hockey, Trampolining, Athletics. A list of all the after school activities can be found in our Extra Curricular Activities section. There are inter-school matches in many sports.
Some recent visits:
Science Museum, National Gallery, Rock Climbing (indoor and outdoor), University visits, Mountain activities weekend, 6th Form team building activities weekend, Languages trip to France, Victoria & Albert Museum, National Portrait Gallery, London Eye, Ice Skating, East Mersea Fun Day.
The Academy provides parents with reports twice a year which show students' progress and attainment in each of the subjects studied. Opportunities are available to discuss these reports, either through the consultation evening or organised appointments.
Syllabuses for external examination are chosen from a range of examining boards for suitability for the students' learning needs. This means that we use a number of the different boards. Copies of syllabuses and schemes of work are available on request, though we would ask for a few days notice.
Progress through the Academy
All students are required to attain the academic standards laid down by the Academy in order to progress at the end of each academic year and the Academy may in its discretion refuse to progress any student who fails to reach any such standards.
All students except the 6th Form are expected to wear the full Academy uniform. We ask parents to assist us by providing the uniform and by encouraging their daughters/sons to take pride in their dress. The uniform is available from the Academy shop.
While the Academy conversion takes place and while the building of the new school continues the uniform will remain as described on our uniform pages and in your child's diary. Any changes to the uniform will not be implemented until September 2013
The Academy Day
Academy begins at 8.20 am and ends at 2.40 pm
Hours of Teaching: 25 hours per week.