A warm welcome from the Trustees of Denefield School.
We are very proud of our school which has been serving our local community for over 40 years. This year, we are delighted to welcome our new Headteacher, Edwin Towill and our new Deputy Headteacher, Yolande Mead.
Our caring and distinctive ethos is based on our ‘CHARACTER’ values and a belief that every child has the potential to succeed. Our strap line, ‘Success for Life' is at the heart of all the school's work.
We are committed to excellence and passionately believe that the school provides our young people with the best opportunities to develop and achieve both academically and personally. At Denefield, we strongly believe in providing a broad and balanced curriculum and value all subjects especially in a time when schools are under increasing Government pressure to focus on a narrow suite of academic qualifications.
We are very proud of our Ofsted ‘Good’ status, which we received in 2014 and again in 2018 and were delighted on both occasions that the inspection teams recognised the actions taken by senior leaders, staff and trustees to further improve the quality of education provided.
Our 2019 GCSE exam results saw 56% of Year 11 students achieve the basics metric (ie grades 4 to 9 in English and math). Good GCSE results were achieved in: Art, Design & Technology, Business, and Hospitality and Catering. At A Level, students performed well in: Drama and Theatre Studies, Sociology and the Extended Project Qualification.
Our curriculum provides students with a good academic grounding together with ample opportunities to become well rounded individuals. Developing ‘CHARACTER’ values is a key focus of our work and we encourage our students to embrace these values to become Confident, Happy, Articulate, Resilient, Ambitious, Courageous, Tolerant, Empathetic and Respectful individuals. Students are given opportunities to thrive and grow, through an array of extra-curricular activities (ie sports clubs, expressive arts clubs, Duke of Edinburgh Awards, Combined Cadet force) and in-school leadership positions (ie school council, house council, subject ambassadors).
We have excellent links with a number of local businesses which provide superb opportunities for young people to develop a passion and interest for the STEM subjects. The school has a strong sporting tradition and plays an active part in a number of county fixtures; opportunities to play sport overseas have been introduced in recent years, past trips include Paris, Greece and Malta. Our art, music and drama departments make valuable contributions to school life including annual productions; past performances include: ‘Oliver’, ‘We will rock you’ and ‘Hairspray’. We have a partnership with Pangbourne College and have a ‘Combined Cadet Force’ which enables our young people to develop powers of leadership by means of training to promote the qualities of responsibility, resilience, resourcefulness, endurance, and perseverance.
Our Modern Foreign Languages curriculum offers a wide range of languages: French, Spanish and German and opportunities for overseas visits to help children practice language skills and to experience the culture of countries they are studying. Our German exchange has been in place for the last 33 years and is testament to the drive and enthusiasm of the leadership team in MFL.
Since January 2012 the school has operated as a standalone Academy Trust School. Academy schools are free from Local Authority control but directly accountable to the Secretary of State for Education. Academy status has benefited the school considerably and has enabled us to bid for a number of capital grants to improve the buildings and learning environment. To date, we have received £2.921 million of funding which has been used to extensively improve our buildings and grounds. Our latest project, completed in summer 2019, includes fire safety improvements and new windows in the Humanities Block and the Gym
I am very proud to be Chair of Trustees at Denefield School. The Trustees are very committed to supporting the school and working with the staff to offer the best education for the young people in our local community. As a parent of three children, my two daughters who have completed their education at the school and my son is in the Sixth Form; I have been delighted with the quality of education and the excellent support they have received.
Chair of the Trust Board