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Choosing a secondary school or sixth form: interview with Wymondham High Academy students

PUBLISHED: 12:42 29 September 2020 | UPDATED: 18:43 29 September 2020

Wymondham High students at their annual Colour Run which raises money for Teenage Cancer Trust. Picture: Wymondham High

Wymondham High students at their annual Colour Run which raises money for Teenage Cancer Trust. Picture: Wymondham High

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When asked if they would recommend Wymondham High, all the students we interviewed answered with a unanimous ‘yes.’ It’s clear that the students at the academy are more than satisfied with their education, and here’s why.

'When it comes to results, Wymondham High is one of the highest performing schools in Norfolk.' Picture: Wymondham High'When it comes to results, Wymondham High is one of the highest performing schools in Norfolk.' Picture: Wymondham High

Challenging curriculum

As a parent, you likely want to know that a school will offer an ‘ambitious and engaging’ curriculum to help your child flourish and thrive academically.

“When it comes to results, Wymondham High is one of the highest performing schools in Norfolk,” Mr Rockey, Principal of Wymondham High says.

“But we also put a key focus on equipping students with the skills, understanding, and the right level of confidence and humility to prepare them for the future and help them lead a successful and fulfilling life.”

Wymondham High is an 11-18 co-educational academy. Picture: Wymondham HighWymondham High is an 11-18 co-educational academy. Picture: Wymondham High

He goes on to explain that they ‘offer all students a broad and balanced curriculum’ so they can ‘master each subject in a supportive, focused and aspirational environment.’ The curriculum is seen as a seven-year journey and is divided into three sections:

Core – this is designed for students to gain a solid understanding of the key concepts. Students focus on the core subjects, as well as expanding their skills with Performing and Visual Arts, Technology and Foreign Languages.

Focused – mastery is at the centre of this point in the curriculum journey. Students choose five subjects to study in depth in addition to the foundation subjects, keeping them engaged in learning. All students study a language and either History or Geography over these three years.

Specialised – students study 3-4 A Levels with the option of an EPQ or Core Maths. They are challenged and supported throughout and encouraged to research and consider their future destinations.

A former student says, “Personally, I enjoyed sports the most. Not just the competition side of things, but also because it meant I could spend time with friends and get to know different people. There’s so much to get involved in like public speaking and debate teams, as well as after school clubs in Science, Design & Technology and Art.”

How does the academy support students’ wellbeing?

“During the COVID-19 lockdown, the emphasis on support was very noticeable,” says a sixth-form student at the academy.

“The teachers are always there to speak to you about any troubles or issues you may be facing, whether within the school or externally. But amazingly, the support was even better during the lockdown, with teachers reaching out to check in on us frequently. Mental wellbeing is a priority at Wymondham High.”

The academy has a large, dedicated pastoral and wellbeing team, allowing them to ensure students are happy and healthy.

What facilities does the school have?

Being a decidedly large community of over 1,700 students, Wymondham High boasts a lot of green, open space, multiple social areas, and, of course, many equipped classrooms.

Some of the stand-out features are the newly designed drama studio, film studies suite, technology rooms, brand new canteen and state-of-the-art library.

An educational journey

Mr Rockey believes that students should embark on a journey when they start at secondary school, focusing on personal and academic growth to help them become confident and ready for the world ahead.

“School should be about more than just getting good grades,” explains Mr Rockey.

“We see our academy as a journey for the students, within which they learn from a broad and balanced curriculum, expand their understanding and love for various sports and art forms, and ultimately blossom as individuals.”

After asking the students how they had grown within their time at Wymondham High, they were all able to pinpoint what the school had helped them to develop in. This included things like confidence, independence and a passion and love for learning.

To prospective parents and students, one sixth-former says: “Wymondham High and Sixth Form offers students an unforgettable experience and successfully aids them in whichever path they wish to follow - it is such an excellent place to learn.”

Visit wymondhamhigh.co.uk for more information. Contact them on 01953 602078 or office@wh-at.net.

Find them at Folly Road, Wymondham, Norfolk NR18 0QT


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