The English department are a vibrant, energetic and enthusiastic department. The recently appointed support team are headed by an experienced teacher in Gary Westmoreland, who has led the department to a position of success and high standing in the academy. Last year 62% of pupils achieved a grade C or higher in GCSE English. Lessons are interactive and challenging for students. We aim to push students to achieve their individual potential.
Head of Faculty; English, Media and Languages (responsible for Key Stage 4): G Westmoreland
2nd in Department (responsible for Key Stage 3): M Scholes
Teacher of English with TLR (responsible for Key Stage 5): G Newton
Teacher of English :J Henry
Teacher of English: A Hallewell
Teacher of English : A Castle
Teacher of English: M Ashurst
Our Vice Principal Pam Buckingham also teaches English and acts as the link between English and the Senior Leadership Team.
English has the enviable position of being the most used subject in the academy – forming everyone’s main mode of communication! We take this responsibility very seriously and run a deep and challenging curriculum which covers a broad range of skills and caters for all abilities. We believe that English is not just about writing, but about communication as a whole. To this end we incorporate different media, smart board technology and collaborative learning strategies into as many lessons as possible. We also teach using drama, speaking and listening techniques and films where appropriate.
Key Stage 3
National Curriculum objectives are central to Key Stage 3 teaching which (in year 7) is led by our Next Generation Team. This exciting initiative sees year 7 pupils being taught all key subjects by one skilled teacher. English lessons are still supplied and vetted by the English Department, who keep a close eye on pupil development ready for year 8. The feedback that we have had from pupils has been excellent so far. In year 8 pupils follow a more traditional teaching pattern to prepare them for GCSE Controlled Assessment in year 9. They cover subjects such as media, set texts (Hoot and Stone Cold for example), and Shakespeare.
Key Stage 4
In year 9 students begin a 2 year GCSE English and English Literature course. This allows students to engage with a variety of texts such as: contemporary novels, Shakespeare and poetry. This exciting new course also offers students the opportunity to analyse spoken language. All students take the exam at the end of year 10, allowing students who do not achieve their target grade another opportunity to re-sit in year 11. Our GCSE results last year were the best in the Academy’s history. This success was due in part, to the input of our Director of English, Mr Snell. We are in a very fortunate position that Mr Snell is also the Principal Examiner for WJEC (the exam board we currently use). His expertise has been utilised to ensure that every member of our department is an ‘expert’ in how to ensure our students achieve the highest possible grades. 2010 saw record numbers of students enrolling on our A-Level English course, highlighting the fact that students find English, both enjoyable and relevant to their future success.
Key Stage 5
We currently offer three subjects at Advanced level; English Literature, Media Studies and English Language and Literature. The English Language and Literature course has proved particularly popular with students. The courses all offer students the chance to hone their analytical skills, be creative and debate a variety of issues. We aim to ensure that students leave the academy as independent and creative learners, who can analyse our written and spoken language in depth. This could ultimately prepare them for further study at university.