The Leventhorpe School
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Leventhorpe Academy is a mixed, 11-19 secondary school and sixth form in the historic market town of Sawbridgeworth, Hertfordshire. The school has had a specialism in Business and Enterprise since 2004 and, as a high performing school, became an academy in 2011. It belongs to the Bishop's Stortford and Sawbridgeworth Consortium of Secondary Schools, a group of six local secondary schools.
The intake at age 11 is drawn mainly from the pleasant and prosperous towns of Sawbridgeworth and Bishop's Stortford and from the surrounding villages. Demand for places in the school is high with over three applications for each place and some students travel significant distances to attend. At the last full OFSTED inspection in 2012 the school was graded “Outstanding” in each of the five categories judged by Ofsted under the 2012 inspection framework: Achievement of Pupils, Quality of Teaching, Behaviour and Safety of Pupils, Leadership and Management and Overall Effectiveness.
A brand new leisure centre with state of the art facilities includes a multi-purpose sports hall, dance studio classrooms and an all-weather astroturf pitch was opened in 2011, enhancing the students' opportunities in sport and PE. Leventhorpe Leisure Centre is open to the public after school hours and offers a wide range of classes to the local community as well as a fully equipped fitness suite. There is also a swimming pool on site together with extensive playing fields.
The specialism in Business and Enterprise involves all faculties but especially Business, Mathematics, and ICT. As a result a number of enhancements to accommodation, resources and the curriculum have taken place. All students in Years 7 – 11 follow a Business & Communication Studies course. This leads to GCSE in Year 9 or 10, followed by AS or GCSE in ICT or Business during key stage 4, or DIDA. The School also has a rapidly expanding community development plan. There are overlaps between specialist school activities and other strategic priorities for example ‘Teaching and Learning’ and ‘Personalisation’, so in reality a number of developments are driven by various members of the SLT. Leventhorpe engages in teacher training and is a partner school with Cambridge University for PGCE and with The University of Hertfordshire for the Graduate Teacher Programme. Staff are encouraged to gain further qualifications.
Subject departments are organised on a Faculty basis. The responsibility for the preparation of schemes of work and for monitoring their delivery lies with the Head of Faculty. Each student undergoes a termly assessment in each subject. The responsibility for implementing the assessment policy lies with the Head of Faculty.
The School upholds the traditional values of uniform, discipline, homework, punctuality and polite behaviour. Each of Years 7 – 11 is organised into six mixed ability tutor groups and each tutor group is assigned to one of six Houses: Rivers, Cutforth, Newsom, Fawbert, Lawrence and Barnard. House Heads oversee the academic and social development of students in their House as they progress through the School. Years 12 and 13, although assigned to a House, are overseen by the Head of Sixth Form. Form tutors monitor their form’s progress and liaise closely with pastoral heads in deciding appropriate action.
As an academy, the Governors are the employers but the School liaises closely with the Local Authority – Hertfordshire County Council. Employment of staff is governed by national, county and some local agreements. The School employs approximately 170 staff (part-time and full-time) about half of whom are teachers.
At the School there is a PTFA to which all parents automatically belong. The membership of the committee changes from year to year. Their support encompasses much more than fund raising. More information can found on the PTFA website.
The school takes it name from Sir John Leventhorpe, Lord of the medieval manor of Shingle Hall, one of two manors in Sawbridgeworth. The school logo is a replica of the brasses of John Leventhorpe and his wife and date from 1445. The original brasses form a permanent memorial in Great St Mary’s Church in Sawbridgeworth.Extra-Curricular Clubs and Activities
Leventhorpe holds the Qiss Award which recognises the wide choice of extra-curricular clubs and activities available to all students. A comprehensive timetable of clubs offers something for everyone, from Astronomy and Science to Japanese and an active Glee club. Emphasis is placed on supporting students not just in lessons but also outside the curriculum by giving them the opportunity to explore their interests and to learn something completely new.
Many sports are participated in at Leventhorpe, with the school not excelling in Athletics, Rugby and Cricket. The Year of 2009 Cricket team having notable losing streak in the Hertfordshire County Cup against Richard Hale School, winning 13 matches with no losses.
Leventhorpe was the first school in Hertfordshire to have planning permission granted for two 6 kW wind turbines. The school has installed a monitoring system, the data from which is used in various subject areas. This system shows how much energy is being generated at any particular moment and how much has been generated to date. Additionally, there is information on the amount of carbon dioxide that has been saved.
Notable former pupils
- Andrew Osagie, athlete