HOD – Julie Taylor
Business and Economics are popular option choices at Pershore High School. There are 2 specialist and experienced teachers within the department. We are members of a Business and Economics networking group to keep up to date with curriculum and exam board changes. The department has 2 dedicated teaching rooms which are fully equipped with computers and interactive whiteboards.
At Key Stage 4 students study Edexcel GCSE Business Studies. Each Year 10 group is taught by one teacher; when timetabling permits, the Year 11 groups are taught by both teachers to give students access to a wider input on content and exam technique. Until recent major changes to the course we also offered VCERT Level 2 Business and Enterprise. Alternative courses taught in a more vocational way are currently under review in the department. There are usually 3 groups in each of Year 10 and Year 11.
A-Level Economics (Edexcel B) and OCR L3 Cambridge Technical in Business are offered at Key Stage 5, both of which are very popular. Both courses are equally suitable for students who have or have not studied the subject at GCSE. Students regularly go on to study the subject at University with great success. Teaching at sixth form is split between the 2 teachers. We have very high expectations of our students, and actively encourage students to take an interest in current economic, business and political news. We bring as much as possible from the real world into the classroom, to help make sense of the theory.
The department offers Young Enterprise as an elective choice. Our teams have been really successful in the regional competitions. Students work as a board of directors, sell shares to raise capital and come up with a product idea which they go on to sell. We also enter students for nationally recognized management games, including Bank of England Target 2.0, IEACW Base and CIPFA regional heats.
There are strong links with local businesses. We have visiting speakers in to provide context for the work done in the classroom, and to give the students exposure to local employers to widen horizons. Pershore High School recently won the Hereford and Worcester Chamber of Commerce award for Education and Business Partnership.
Even though we are a small department in school, we work very hard to promote levels of excellence and ambition among the students. As a close knit team we ensure that the students achieve well above the school average in terms of results, and that they leave us with an enhances understanding of the world of business and work that they will eventually be part of.
HOD – Hannah Rhodes
Students at Pershore High School study a wide range of units at Key Stage 3; we offer traditional ICT units as well as Computer Science based ones. All students have one lesson a week and mainly have one teacher.
At key stage 4 students can either opt to study CiDA (Certificate in Digital Applications) or GCSE Computer Science with OCR. Both courses are very popular; we currently have two classes of CiDA students in year 10 and 11, and one teacher teaches each class. This is a coursework focused qualification and therefore monitoring and tracking is central to ensure students’ progress. We are currently in our first year of offering GCSE Computer Science, it has been very popular and we have one large group of 28 students. At present, this class has two teachers and delivery of the specification is therefore spilt.
At key stage 5 we offer students A Level Computer Science (OCR) and Cambridge Technicals in Digital Media. Key stage 5 is delivered between the team, specifications are divided, groups are shared and tracking pupil progress is done centrally. Digital Media seems to be a popular option for our students, group sizes are between 10 and 14 students. Our sixth form students are enthusiastic about our subject and many continue into University courses or apprenticeship schemes. Last year’s Computer science group saw two of our students secure apprenticeships with GCHQ. Each year we get a small collection of students who study both options with us.
The department consists of three full time teachers, and collaboration is key. The Head of ICT and Computing is very active in encouraging staff to develop their expertise and play a full role in the work of the department. Good practice is shared, all Schemes of Work, resources, specifications, tracking sheets are centralised and are used and developed by all staff.
The ICT and Computing department is dedicated to student progress and we strive to offer a dynamic curriculum, after all this is a dynamic and forever changing subject. We endeavour to harness student potential by challenging their knowledge and encouraging their problem solving skills. Staff development plays an important role in this process, all members of the department are encouraged to develop their specialisms and expand their own teaching practice. We are a supportive and collaborate team, committed to teaching and learning and facilitating student progress.
HOD - Julia Haynes
The English Department at Pershore High School has an enviable reputation and a proven record of success at both G.C.S.E. and ‘A’ Level. We are committed to providing all students with a challenging and stimulating curriculum that not only focuses on creativity but also the grammar and language skills that are so essential for life long success.
All students benefit from a generous allocation of time and staffing in the subject; the needs of every student are catered for, as programmes of study are individually tailored. There are currently seven full-time specialist teachers of English; we also benefit from an experienced intervention teacher, plus specialist TA.
Teaching is undertaken in a group of rooms (on the quad) with easy access to our two stock-rooms and workroom. Nearby, is a Drama Studio, equipped with sound and lighting systems, used for both the curriculum teaching of Drama and for small-scale productions and other presentations. In addition, we have ready access to suites of ICT rooms, as well as Departmental laptops.
We teach in mixed ability groups across all Key Stages, thus motivating all students to achieve at the highest possible level. As we start at Year 8, we have extremely cordial relationships with colleagues in our feeder Middle Schools. At Key Stage 3, our programmes of study are constantly evolving but have at their heart the skills that are required for G.C.S.E. English and English Literature. We have a clearly structured pathway that gradually challenges analytical reading and writing skills throughout the years. In addition, we have library lessons each fortnight where we have adopted the Accelerated Reading Programme in order to foster a love of reading. Our librarian also arranges author visits, workshops and competitions, ensuring that the library maintains its high status as a hub of learning. At Key Stage 4, we follow the AQA specification and all students study both English and English Literature. The Department constantly seeks ways to share good practice; we regularly review our approach to the more rigorous, increasingly demanding G.C.S.E. specification.
We have a thriving Sixth Form and offer both A’ level Literature and A’ Level Literature and Language: in both subjects, we follow AQA courses. There are nine lessons per fortnight in Year 12 and in Year 13 and once again, we take a collaborative approach, ensuring high quality assessment, teaching and learning.
We are an ambitious department both for ourselves (constantly seeking ways to develop professionally) and also for our students; we set high standards across the board. In this way, we offer many enrichment opportunities for all students from theatre visits to creative writing. In addition, we have an exceptional record in both debating and public speaking. Our Sixth Form benefits from trips to the Battlefields and Paris as well as enjoying such cultural delights as Poetry and Pimm’s.
The Department has worked with many trainee teachers in recent years and is fully committed to ensuring success on the course. We are a supportive, welcoming and experienced department. Without doubt, we take pride in our students’ achievements, ensuring that they are well-rounded, confident, literate individuals who are fully equipped for their future.
PE Department: HOD – Tom Barz
Physical Education is given a very high profile in our school. All students in Years 8 – 11 follow the National Curriculum in Physical Education. At Key Stage 4 the Department offers GCSE PE and the NCFE VCert Level 2 Certificate in Health and Fitness. Sport Studies is also offered at A Level with a large number of students obtaining outstanding results, relative to their prior attainment.
The department’s facilities have greatly improved in recent years with refurbished changing rooms, a floodlit all-weather surface, whilst planning has been passed for a sand based hockey astro turf. There is also a functional sports hall providing four badminton courts. With a 27-acre site we also have pitches for football, rugby and hockey. All facilities are used regularly by the community in the evenings, holidays and weekends. There are 4 dedicated tennis courts and a playground with basketball hoops which provides 3 additional courts in the summer. The department makes good use of the Pershore Leisure Centre, usually with students in Key Stages 4 and 5; the facilities include a swimming pool, sports hall and fitness suite.
The department is well resourced and has a dedicated classroom in a newly built art block. Resources include: TV/video, camcorder IPAD, digital camera and projector. All teaching staff have their own laptop computer. There is very good liaison with our three contributory Middle Schools and twelve First Schools; every year our Sports Academy Leaders organise sports and activity days for different year groups. The school also enters and hosts many sports festivals, such as dance and trampolining, which prove very popular with our students. Moreover, our Sports Academy Leaders are charged with assisting with a wide range of extra-curricular clubs and events.
We work hard to maintain a calm, purposeful and friendly ethos. We encourage full participation by students in a range of activities, especially sport. We are committed to improving our students’ attainment with great regard to the individual. We take pride in our students’ many and varied achievements. Collectively and individually, students regularly achieve success at District, County and sometimes National level in a variety of sports. The Department offer a full programme of practices and fixtures including Hockey, Netball, Rounders, Athletics, Tennis, Cricket, Football, Rugby and Basketball.
We are a tight-knit department with high standards; all colleagues within the department have high expectations in terms of pupil achievement and behaviour. The department has worked with many trainee teachers in recent years and is fully committed to ensuring success on the course. As far as possible, individual needs will be met to ensure colleagues receive as much support as possible. Our primary concern is to enable our pupils to achieve their full potential and we take pride in all their achievements, and the calm and purposeful ethos that permeates our school.
HOD: Samantha Foster
Students at Pershore High School follow a programme of combined Humanities in Key Stage 3. In the Autumn Term students begin their discreet study of History with specialist History teachers with a unit on Medieval England. Second half of the autumn term looks at World War One. Spring see World Two studied and then around Easter, students begin studying for their History GCSEs in year 9, starting with a Unit on The Cold War.
The GCSE we follow is AQA with options looking at Cold War, Germany 1880 to 945 in Paper One. Paper Two studies are Britain: Health and the people and The Normans.
A Level is taught following the AQA syllabus, looking at Units on the Crusades, the Tudor Reformation and Russia/USSR 1855 to 1955. The latter being taught as an NEA unit. We have excellent results at A Level.
The department is staffed by three teachers, all specialists in History. We are based in a purpose-built Humanities block. This has nine classrooms, an ICT suite and staff workroom, all classrooms are fitted with digital televisions with HDMUI link ups and all staff have laptop computers.
The department is committed to high standards and high expectations in terms of student achievement and behaviour, the Head of History is very active in encouraging staff to develop their expertise and play a full role in the work of the department.
Our main concern is to enable our students to achieve their full potential and we take pride in all their achievements, and the calm and purposeful ethos which permeates our school. We are committed to continuous improvement, with particular regard to staff welfare and development.