Seven special features about Barnhill:
- Students get outstanding support.
We have outstanding pastoral support, not just according to us, but according to Ofsted. We give every student the support they need to be successful and feel comfortable at school. 95% of students say they are happy or very happy at school, and 97% say they have a good relationship with their teachers.
- Students do very well academically.
Our results are now very good, and will continue to get better each year. In 2013, 85% of students achieved 5 or more A to C grades at GCSE, with 61% including English and Maths. At A-Level, 30% of the grades were A or A*. The progress students make is excellent, or in other words, the grades students achieve relative to their starting point.
We are a truly comprehensive school which welcomes children of all abilities and backgrounds, so our headline figure may seem not as high as some “selective schools”. However, when you look beneath this headline, you can see that our students do as well, if not better, than students in any other local school.
- Students have real prospects when they leave.
School is preparation for life. Every student is different and will follow their own path, and our job is to prepare them for that future. We value students who want to go into work, and have strong relationships with local employers, such as FSL, and the Apprenticeship Scheme. We now have many students going to University, including those in the Global top 10 (Oxford, Cambridge and UCL). At the same time our students are also getting onto the most competitive courses such as Medicine. We have built special relationships with local Universities - Brunel, and the University of West London. They have recently announced five annual scholarships just for Barnhill students, which will pay the entire fees for their first year (£9000).
- Students develop as a rounded and grounded young person.
School is about more than studying. It is about personal development and maturing into a young adult. Barnhill students excel at Sport and we currently have National Champions in four separate sports. Barnhill students also excel at Leadership. Our Year 10 students, for example, run programmes in Primary Schools and have been commended by Sport England. And Barnhill students excel at developing character. Participants in the Duke of Edinburgh Scheme, World Challenge, and Prince’s Trust have been singled out for special praise.
- Students receive first-class teaching.
We have a growing reputation as a Centre of Excellence for teaching. We work with many organisations to train our staff, including Teach First, Challenge Partners and the Institute of Education. Our staff now work to train and support teachers in other schools. We focus on making teaching engaging and enjoyable, as well as rigorous and focussed. We are fortunate to have an excellent and stable staff who are prepared to go the extra mile.
- Students have a personalised pathway to success.
We have a unique and special curriculum, which teachers from all over the country have been to see and learn from. We have a philosophy of “stage not age”, which means a student should study at the right level, however old they are. If they are ready to take GCSEs at 14, they are allowed to take them. If they are ready to start on A Level subjects in Year 11, we make this possible. We plan our curriculum very carefully so that each individual can progress at the right moment and this has been a major factor in our success over the last five years.
- We work in partnership with parents to achieve the best for the child.
A strong relationship between home and school is vital to success. We listen to parents and value their input, ideas and feedback. If parents are not happy, we want to know so that we can put things right. If parents are happy we want to know so that we can build on the things that work well. Our commitment is a seven year partnership which will bring success to the child, and makes the family and community proud.