to the Willingdon Community School website. The site aims to provide you
with easy access to most of the information you may need to know about
the school. We hope you find it useful.
Willingdon Community School
Willingdon Community School is an 11-16, mixed, comprehensive, Leading Edge school, which serves a suburban/rural catchment area on the edge of Eastbourne.
Whilst the focus of the school is on high performance in all academic subjects, we have a specialism in the media and visual arts and are a Gifted and Talented Lead School.
The school is regularly over subscribed, with 986 students on roll. School buses provide transport for over 250 students from the Stone Cross, Pevensey, Westham and Langney areas of Eastbourne. We take students from approximately 15 different primary and private schools from across the area, with the majority coming from Willingdon, Polegate, Stone Cross, Pevensey & Westham and Hankham primary schools. We have a particularly close working relationship with Polegate and Willingdon primary schools, with whom we have formed a collaborative partnership aimed at developing the quality of transition to secondary school. Initiatives developed through this collaboration also benefit students joining us from other schools.
We are one of seven secondary schools in the area which work very closely together on a range of joint projects and strategies, having formed, with the local FE College (Sussex Downs College), a 14-19 federation. Working collaboratively, the schools and college have developed a number of flexible curriculum offers, strategies to support the development of good behaviour, improved transition to college at 16, staff development programmes and a range of other joint initiatives. Willingdon has taken a prominent role in leading on many of these, to the benefit of all schools locally. As a Leading Edge school, working together with local schools is very much at the heart of our work.
Willingdon was offered the opportunity of becoming a Leading Edge school in 2009, as a result of our high level of academic performance. The school regularly achieves the best GCSE results in the area with students making better than expected levels of progress at all levels compared with progress made by students nationally. As a Gifted and Talented Lead School we also place an emphasis on challenging our more able students to reach the very highest levels of achievement, with around 40% of students leaving with 3 or more grades at A*/A. In 2011, 29 students left with 10 or more A*/A grades.
Leading Edge status also carries with it the responsibility of supporting our own staff and other schools to improve and raise standards. As a result, we have developed a comprehensive research and development programme for teachers, linked to performance management, which has created a highly motivated and research orientated teaching workforce, committed to self-improvement and learning together. Aspects of this work, and specific training programmes developed by the school for leaders and classroom teachers, have been introduced to support the development of staff in other schools as well as our own. This work, combined with that of my own as a Local Leader of Education (LLE), is contributing to the wider improvement of education both locally and further afield and provides for career development opportunities and experiences for a range of teachers at the school.
Inevitably the detail on this website can only give you a flavour of the ethos of the school and some idea of what we do. However, whether you are a parent or carer interested in sending your child to the school, a student interested in coming to the school or a teacher or support staff worker wishing to apply for a post at the school, then I believe the best way to find out about us is to visit during a working day.
We are proud of what we do and would be very happy to show you around and to talk with you about your interest. I would, however, like to finish by saying, briefly, something about what I and my staff stand for and believe in, as I believe it underpins our values, our commitment to the school and what we are constantly striving to achieve for the young people who attend the school.First and foremost we believe that every student should have the opportunity to fulfil his/her potential, regardless of ability or circumstances. We believe every child has the right of access to the best possible education. We aim to provide it within a challenging and supportive environment which sets and sustains high standards of involvement, self-discipline, behaviour and academic achievement.
We are committed to developing expertise and high standards of achievement in all areas of the curriculum, providing for the needs, interests and talents of all members of our community. Fundamental to our beliefs is the recognition that every child matters. Some are very able, some very talented, some have special educational needs, some find school challenging, some lack confidence, some are good at mathematics and some are not, some are artistic, some are sporty, some enjoy taking on responsibility, some like to stay in the background, but all are different and need the support and encouragement to develop and thrive according to need, in an environment which builds on their progress and celebrates their successes. Our aim is that every student that joins the school should be able to feel safe and secure, be healthy, enjoy achieving, play their part in shaping the school and contributing to its community, and achieve success which prepares them to take the next steps in their life.
I hope you may wish to find out more about the school and should you wish it, I would be very happy to meet with you.