Bexley Grammar School
Strive for Excellence
|Type||Grammar School; Academy|
|DfE URN||136369 Tables|
|Ofsted||Reports Pre-academy reports|
|Former pupils||Old Bexleians|
|Head Prefect||Poppy Barran|
|Contact No||020 8304 8538|
|Website||Bexley Grammar School|
Bexley Grammar School, is a co-educational grammar school with academy status in Welling, in the London Borough of Bexley, UK. Students are admitted into Year 7 at age 11, however can be admitted at a younger age of 10 if the student skipped a year or into the Sixth Form (Year 12) at age 16, providing they fulfil the entry requirements (11+ Examination).
The school badge contains the Latin motto "Praestantiae Studere", which means "To Strive for Excellence".
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Founded in 1955, Bexley Grammar School was opened by Sir Edward Heath, the local Member of Parliament at the time, and after whom the Heath Building (completed in 2000) is named. Sir Edward attended the school's Golden Jubilee celebrations shortly before his death in 2005. The school became a specialist Language College in September 2002 and a specialist college in Science and Mathematics in 2008. The school was then awarded foundation school status, before converting to an academy in January 2011. The school continues to specialise in languages, science and mathematics.
There have been five headmasters in the school's history. The former head, Mr. Roderick MacKinnon, is now head of Bristol Grammar School. He was replaced by Mr John Welsh.
The school has expanded into new buildings over time; Main (M), Jubilee (J), Golden Jubilee (was Danson building but was replaced in 2005 by the current building), Heath (H), Le Feuvre (L), Music (Mu), Jubilee extension (J) (2002–03) and Golden Jubilee (G). Some confusion can occur with the Jubilee extension, which was originally the G building and the 2005 extension of the Main building. Recently, the SEN block (S) has been added on the end of the school on the PE block's side and a new sixth form centre has been built as an extension to the Le Feuvre building.
The schools layout forms an internal courtyard area surrounded on all sides, except from the West, a covered area.
The area of the field exceeds that of the buildings and the field is surrounded on two sides by Danson Park, as can be seen from this map: 
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The school has a broad curriculum, with studies in a broad range of subjects. The school exceeds itself in ensuring all students receive teaching within broad range of subjects, which despite specialisms involve a generally very high standard of teaching by engaged and motivated staff in all departments. The variety of subjects provided has expanded considerably in the past five years, with for instance, Drama included in the Year 7 Timetable for the first time in 2006.
Extra-curricular clubs, during breaks, lunches and after-school periods provide many additional opportunities for students, with for instance includes additional language learning of Chinese, Japanese and Russian. The English department runs successful Debating (Lower Years) and Critical Thinking Clubs; both of which improve key skills, as well as providing other benefits (Bexley Debating Prize gaining the school 6 dedicated Macs for Film Studies). All these are in addition to the additional revision sessions held for most subjects in the weeks approaching exams which staff/departments are most willing to provide.
Whilst perhaps less prominent within the school, the provision of the four Design and Technology subjects at KS3 (Graphics,Resistant Materials, Food Tech and Textiles) is a key component of the Timetable, with Food Tech being the only known example where double-sessions are preferred over single for these year groups. Each subject has a dedicated room, with specialist equipment (e.g. CAD/CAM, Sewing Machines) and also a single room shared with the Art department.
A fairly significant part of the curriculum is devoted to languages, fitting the schools long-standing (2003) specialist status. In Year 7, all students learn one modern foreign language,(French or German) in addition to Latin; In Year 8 pupils select a second additional foreign language to study, (Spanish, Russian, Japanese, Chinese, Italian and French or German). Students must continue their two modern languages through to GCSE, with GCSE Latin being a further option for KS4. The option of studying CLINT (Classical civilisation) in Year 9 is also available.
Language learning continues into the Sixth Form, as an option for A-level or as extracurricular, or as a compulsory integral part of the IB. Courses in French and German for Business, GCSE Spanish and British Sign Language are currently available as Extra-Curricular Course for A-Level students. This school has an exceptionally high standard in language learning and attainment and is one of the top thirty schools in the country for language.
The school held SATs a year earlier than the national norm for the Year 8 students in 2008 - they completed their SATs at the same time as the Year 9s - with the intention of shifting GCSE preparation and early GCSE work (including coursework) into Year 9. However, after the KS3 SATs were abolished the following year, GCSE preparation shifted to Year 9 as originally planned. Science GCSEs Specifications are also being withdrawn with the introduction of IGCSEs (at Double or Triple) and Science in the News GCSE from 2007.
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The school offers the IB diploma Programme as an alternative to A Levels in its sixth form. Students undertake 6 main subjects (3 At Standard Level, 3 at Higher Level) as well as a variety of extra-curricular requirements in order to obtain the diploma. The school has specific resources for IB students to use as well as specialist teachers in order to help and guide them through their 2-year study. The choice of doing IB has grown in popularity year on year since it was first introduced but A Levels still remain the more popular choice.
BGS operates a House System involving all years, with around 12 members of staff in each house. On admission to the school, each student is assigned to one of the six houses :
Wellman (Orange) - Added in 2003 due to expansion of the school year intake from 5 form entry to 7 form entry. Currently the extra form is split between two houses.
Each house is named after a former member of senior staff that had a notable impact on the school. Within these houses, the students have bi-weekly meetings and make up their houses representations in the schools ever growing range of yearly inter-house competitions.
House Competitions include:
- Table tennis
- Swimming (at Crook Log Leisure Center)
- General Knowledge Quiz
- MFL languages song competition(years 7-9)
- Harvest box
- House planter
- Sports Day
- Dragons apprentice (business)
- Cross Country Run (full participation)
- Touch rugby
All six houses have a "Head of House", who is in charge of organising all house activities. They are assisted by several House Captains, selected from the Sixth Form students. The House Captains are responsible for organising and preparing the teams for the competitions, and often officiate at the events themselves. Each Form (except year 12 and 13 who have the house captains) has its own two house representatives, responsible for getting the names down for each house event. The Merit Card Scheme also works into the points system used by the houses. House points can earned for various reasons, chiefly the Merit Card Scheme (each Merit Card earns the house 10 points), and also calculated from the overall performance in the House activities.
The school uniform currently follows the school's blue colour scheme;
- Dark blue blazers
- Dark blue tie with school logo or the golden jubilee tie (blue with golden school badges)
- Light blue or white shirts
- Black or charcoal grey trousers.
- Dark blue blazers
- Light blue fitted blouse with no tie
- Grey skirts only.
The uniform has changed many times in recent history. In recent times a white shirt would have been worn with either a blue, black and white striped tie or a blue and golden badged tie celebrating the schools golden jubilee. Also, in the past, girls were required to wear ties.
Notable former pupils
- Prof Anthony Chapman, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Wales Institute, Cardiff since 1998
- Gavin Peacock, former professional footballer