Ely Free School

Ely city is a rapidly growing community with further strategic housing growth proposed over the next twenty years. There is currently only one secondary school serving all the primary school leavers from the city and surrounding villages. Pupils wishing to go elsewhere must appeal through the County Council, and then if successful travel to schools in Newmarket, Soham or Witchford. This means pupils are generally unable to take part in after school events due to transport issues and therefore are not receiving the full education they could get if school was local. Nobody wishes to see their child fail, even those of us who have failed ourselves want nothing more than to see our offspring succeed. We as parents wish to see our children in jobs which help people, care for people, and aid our community. But how many pupils aspire to do this kind of work? It is a reality that nowadays the dream job is that of a footballer, a WAG, a singer or just being a celebrity. When these dreams are not realised, as is the case for 99% of us, a sense of failure is secured for the rest of that person’s life. As educators we need to show these pupils that within their community they can be more than they ever wished for and will live a life of fulfilment rather than empty resentment. By working closely with the surrounding community and teaching pupils about what life really has to offer we will not only be enriching the lives of our youth but will be making our society a safer more pleasant place to live for generations to come. Students learn in many different ways and as educators we need to facilitate all different learning styles to fit the individual needs of each pupil. A mammoth task, but one which is achievable, especially with reduced class sizes. As a general overview pupils learning would be supported in the following ways: Learning practically Learning through thought and discussion Learning through experiencing Learning through communication Learning through the community Learning through meeting new people Learning through support where needed (SEN) Learning through each other Learning in academic set groups Students always learn most effectively with a teacher with whom they feel is firm but fair and that has definitive boundaries in terms of discipline and conduct. All students learn effectively when the classroom is inviting and inspirational, and commends the work of fellow peers. All students learn when they are met with excitement and enthusiasm – it is infectious! All students should have the opportunity to experience a rich curriculum, a variety of teaching styles and feel safe and secure in their school. Pupils will be proud of their school and even after leaving will want to support the school in its delivery of outstanding education. Pupils will leave their education with good to outstanding qualifications and be ready to take on new challenges in an area they feel skilled. No pupil should leave the school not knowing their own mind and direction their life should be heading. All pupils should feel ready emotionally and socially skilled to move on to higher education or in to work. All pupils will have pride in themselves and be able to realise their potential The effective teacher will have his or her off days but will the majority of the time be motivational, enthusiastic, nurturing, commanding and prepared. The effective teacher will be thrown by the question from the back, but will allow the class to discuss a possible answer and show that their suggestions are of value and worth. The effective teacher will not know everything about their subject but will be enthused to find out. The effective teacher will be a role model to staff, parents and pupils. They will uphold morale values, be part of the wider community, look professional and act professional at all times. However, the effective teacher will also have a sense of humour and show humanity. Above all the effective teacher will work for the school and for its pupils expecting no less than the best and will be ready to support the needs of their colleagues and pupils alike. Each brain is a sponge, taking in sight, sound, taste and smell. With each new experience we all learn something, it may be a different lesson, but from that experience evolves an outcome. We are all the same, but different. We can all excel albeit in different areas, we can all be gifted but in different ways. We can all learn, but in different formats. It is my vision to give all students the opportunity to excel in their forte and not to allow restrictions to get in the way of progress. As a Free School our aims would be: To deliver a full curriculum in Years 7 and 8. For Years 7 – 8 work to be topic based and run throughout the curriculum to help pupils transfer easily to the secondary system and to show cohesion throughout. For Year 9-11 pupils to begin preparation for GCSE and aim to take ten or more GCSE subjects; of which five would be statutory, the other five or more would be the choice of pupils, teachers and parents depending on skills and success in prior years. For pupils from Year 9 to be able to take examinations early depending on abilities. For 100% of pupils to achieve their ten or more GCSE’s with A*-C grades. To focus on gifted and talented areas of all pupils and to recognise and aid those pupils which were gifted and talented in non academic areas. To re-introduce ‘home skill’ subjects such as home economics, engineering, business sense, animal husbandry, horticulture, etc. To focus strongly on the community, social behaviour, discipline and pride. To employ staff that are committed to education and the welfare and learning of all pupils. To use PRP as an incentive for staff. To include a varied extra curricular timetable which would be undertaken by all pupils and staff. To use a house-system for in school competitions and for inter school meetings. To dispel the idea of ‘youths’ and nurture a community of well rounded and well educated young people who have vision for their own lives as well as caring for others. To use the community as a teaching tool for curriculum and extra curricular subjects. To make Extra Curricular activities mandatory. To use assessment fully in order to report back to parents regularly; once a term or more depending on child’s individual needs. To use self evaluation to map progress and pitfalls. To advocate zero tolerance concerning discipline

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