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Monk's Walk School - -5 days remaining
Closing Date 12/04/2021 23:59:00
Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, England, AL8 7NL
- per full time
NOR: 1341

We are a mixed school of about 1,350 11-18 year old students in Welwyn Garden City, a Hertfordshire new town on the outskirts of London. Transport links are superb - direct rail links to London in less than 30 minutes; M1, A1(M), M11 and M25 all minutes away. WGC is a pleasant place to live - it even has John Lewis! The school is situated in a greenbelt area in the prosperous northwest corner of the city. Our grounds are magnificent and the view from the school is lovely, the view of our buildings slightly less so - this is an area we are constantly working on within the usual financial constraints. In September 2020 we opened a new teaching block to replace one of our more rundown ones.

Monk's Walk is a genuinely comprehensive school, although the intake profile is changing - the prior attainment of students coming into the school is rising. The number of students with learning challenges is below the national average, with 11.6% supported at school action plus or with an Education and Healthcare Plan (EHCP). Our support for students with SEND is a real strength of the school.

We have a small number of blind or partially sighted students who receive specialist support. We also work very closely with Knightsfield School, a special school for deaf children on our campus. Knightsfield students are fully integrated into key stage 3 lessons in Art, Drama and PE. A small number join us for option subjects in key stage 4.

Parental confidence in the school is high; there were 690 applications for 236 places in Year 7 for September 2021, with 200 of those as first preference. Each year we hear appeals for students wishing to join the school.

The school has an extremely effective behaviour policy and in general behaviour is very good indeed. Our students want to learn and our parents are, on the whole, extremely supportive. Attendance is high.

There is a genuine ‘buzz' around the school and we have a very strong reputation in the city. In February 2018, the school was judged once again by Ofsted to be ‘good' - please read the inspection letter which can be found on our website (or on Ofsted's) should you wish to apply. We were really pleased with the comments made by inspectors. They won't be back until 2022, all being equal.

Level 2 exam results in 2019 were strong. In the Level 2 basics, 47% of students gained a strong pass in English and maths and 76% a standard pass. This puts us well above the national average. Our attainment 8 was 52.5 and progress 8 +0.11. Our 2019 Sixth Form results were also strong and our Level 3 Value Added for Academic courses was 0.11, again well above the national average.

In terms of progress, disadvantaged and SEN students do better in the school than they do nationally. BME students attain very well and have good progress, as do each of the ability groups. Girls' and boys' attainment until 2019 had been exactly the same, in 2019 boys fell behind a bit so we are working on that. We pride ourselves on the fact that Monk's Walk is an inclusive school.

We do not pursue academic achievement at the expense of the wider development of the individual, however. Form tutors, heads of year and heads of house all have important roles in the social, personal and academic support of individuals. Our house system is strong, providing a range of all-ability competitions and activities for mixed-age groups. Recently we have become the first school in the country to have a recycling machine with the credit going as house points. All members of staff are allocated a house. We would like to enhance the role of the sixth form students in our house system, as well as in leadership within the school more generally.

We have a broad programmes of trips, visits and extra-curricular opportunities, including DofE at Bronze, Silver and Gold.

The school became an academy in September 2012. The decision to convert was purely pragmatic and trustees have no intention to make changes to teachers' pay and conditions beyond those made as part of national agreements.

Induction, training and continuing professional development have a very high priority in the school. All new members of staff take part in a comprehensive induction programme on joining the school. We have a proven track record in training teachers and we have both School Direct and PGCE trainees. We take an active part in the Alban Teaching School Alliance.

All staff are supported by a broad programme of continuing training and development. Individual staff are supported on programmes of further study/professional qualifications. The school runs a well-developed performance management system. All staff are actively supported to achieve their individual targets.

More Information: https://teaching-vacancies.service.gov.uk/jobs/head-of-sixth-form-monk-s-walk-school