SPACE to learn

Getting the environment right for optimal learning at the Walworth Academy in south London

the students at Walworth are expected to turn up to the academy as though they were attending a full time job between 8:25am and 4:35pm dressed professionally in suits, but, this extra call to adulthood is rewarded with intelligent, engaging spaces and exciting prospects for their future.

Personal study booths for every Sixth Former

Personal study booths for every Sixth Former

The drive and ambition for the Walworth Sixth Form achievement is unrelenting and each student is extremely ambitious to gain entry to the best university possible. With the focus on hard work and high expectations, students also needed a space to have quiet social time. Walworth Academy recently opened its doors in February to a new cafe-style common room with comfortable, relaxed seating areas and break out spaces.

This trust and freedom invested in the students is supported by high quality teaching and support. ‘There is never a free period and they are never without something to study.’ The new social space is a reward for the students: Tracy Taylor, Head of Sixth Form and Assistant Principal said, ‘We all saw the designs and were very excited about them but never totally believed that the reality would be as the plans. Now the work is done and the facilities are fantastic.’

Cafe-style break out spaces

Cafe-style break out spaces

Ofsted are already impressed by the rapid progress the academy and students are making, commenting in the most recent report on how confident and prepared the students are when they are heading to interviews. This small Sixth Form, Ofsted says, cares very deeply about all students and their personal needs which genuinely changes life their chances.

It’s no surprise then that Walworth Academy is in the top 22% in the country for ‘value added’ A* to B results, meaning that when taking into account students’ GCSE performance they are making huge steps in their A’ and AS’ level results. But Walworth is not only making significant progress in the academic performance of their pupils but also in getting students ready for top universities. As well as A levels students are excelling in subjects like Engineering and IT apprenticeships. As part of the ‘Professional Pathway’, co-ordinated through the Ark Group of schools, Walworth have the resources and professional links to offer students fantastic work placements.

Twelve students have been given the opportunity to attend an ‘immersion study trip’ to Japan for ten days. The trip includes home stays, visiting schools, old people homes and factories. Another opportunity abroad is a chance for students to visit the USA, joining up with a political party during this election year. Needless to say that the chance of securing these kinds of experiences keeps all of the students focussed and keen.

Tracy Taylor added, ‘The Sixth Form philosophy is that we are what we repeatedly do, not just once but over and over. As Aristotle said “Excellence is habit, not an act”.

It is clear that Walworth’s educational team practices what it preaches – and as a result the students are on a very successful path.

WALWORTH ACADEMY
Shorncliffe Road
SE1 5UJ
t: 020 7450 9570
w: www.walworthacademy.org

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