Thomas Telford School

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Thomas Telford School
Ttslogo.JPG
Motto Quality through co-operation
Established 1991
Type City Technology College
Headmaster Sir Kevin Satchwell
Location Old Park
Telford
Shropshire
TF3 4NW
England Coordinates: 52°40′39″N 2°27′30″W / 52.6776°N 2.4583°W / 52.6776; -2.4583
Local authority Telford and Wrekin
DfE URN 123627 Tables
Ofsted Reports
Students 1200
Gender Mixed
Ages 11–18
Colours Thomas Telford Red & White         
Website www.ttsonline.net

Thomas Telford School is a City Technology College in Telford, Shropshire, England. Often referred to as 'TTS', it achieves the highest GCSE pass rate of any comprehensive school in England.[1]

Background[edit]

Founded in 1991, the school was a pioneering experiment in specialist CTCs. The college's catchment area includes Telford, Wolverhampton and the villages and suburbs in between. One of the school's initial main aims was to help relieve the under-performing schools in the urban areas of Wolverhampton. Thomas Telford School generates most of its funds through the sale of its online curriculum content which is sold through its subsidiary company TTSOnline Limited (Thomas Telford School Online Limited).[citation needed]

Online curriculum[edit]

The school produces and sells what it calls an "online curriculum". This consists of interactive learning materials, online tasks and even podcasts which all relate to various subject areas. The school's subsidiary company TTSOnline Ltd. then sells access to the content to other schools for a fixed price. Schools have the option to purchase access to one specific course (for example DiDA), or purchase the entire online curriculum. In addition to the online learning resources that the school provides, the school also provides training days; during these days the teaching staff from other schools can attend seminars at the school and learn the methods in which the school teaches the courses which it provides on its online curriculum and how to maximise the effectiveness of using it in a classroom environment. This combined training for and selling of the online curriculum is known as Project 40.

Information technology[edit]

The school has long been at the forefront of using IT for education, the school makes use of electronic whiteboards provided by Smart Technologies in all classrooms, learning bases and study rooms. In addition to this the school has an advanced internal network operating mainly using Novell and Windows Advanced Server 2003 products. The school also provides an extranet, which is run using Novell Virtual Office, allowing students and staff to access their files and e-mail from home. Thomas Telford School also hosts its online curriculum in-house, with a web server and Real Streaming Media Server housed in the computer services department of the school. The school also has a mirror of its online curriculum at a high-speed London data centre.

The school has at least 1 computer and interactive whiteboard in every classroom as well as around one hundred in each of the school's 4 ILC's (Independent Learning Centres). The school also has a state-of-the-art CAD/CAM suite; which provides access to an array of various Roland CAM CNC milling and machining equipment and a large bedded CO2. The CAD/CAM suite also consists of an HP A1 Pantone printer, HP A3 colour laser printer and HP A3 inkject laser printer as well as the schools network of other laser printers. The CAD/CAM suite also houses around fifty computers for students to produce work on the various CAD packages the school has which includes the latest version of AutoDesk Inventor.

Achievements and school life[edit]

The school caters for students from the age of 11 through to 18. This is in a system of national year groups from Year 7 to 6.2 (year 13). The school also has a unique and successful system of after school curricular activities called Session 3 which are highly encouraged, and which it claims is pivotal to its success over the past years. GCSE and A level results have also improved year on year and now results are consistently around 100% pass rates. Most students leave Thomas Telford with 12 or more pass GCSES of which most are A or A* grades. In the 2008-09 Academic Year, one student left with 15 A or A* GCSES.

In the 2009-10 academic year the school won two national football finals and were finalists and semi finalists in a further 3. Also the Synchronised Swimming Teams are currently national champions and a former student won a gold medal in the European School Games in 2006.[2] In recent years, the school choir has been invited to perform at the Royal Albert Hall, which is an honour for any choir[3]

In its lifetime the school has made several notable achievements. Its current Headmaster, Sir Kevin Satchwell, was knighted in 2001 for services to education and the community,[4] and from 1998 to the present day, TTS has been named 'the most successful Comprehensive school in the UK', after 100% of its pupils gained 5 or more A*-C GCSE's, being the first and only comprehensive school ever to do so in 1998.

A rigorous method of applicant selection takes place, including an entrance test to allow all abilities to be reflected and equally proportioned in the school, with the majority of successful applicants being middle achievers and an equal proportion of low to high achievers which reflects the local population.

Ranking & Facilities[edit]

In 2005 Thomas Telford school produced the best results of any school comprehensive or otherwise at 16. Thomas Telford students scored an average of 760.3 points per student, more than 100 points better than its nearest rival. Headmaster Sir Kevin Satchwell commented that the school no longer uses the traditional yardstick of five or more GCSE passes at grades A* to C since all students achieved at least 12 GCSE passes at grades A* to C.[5]

The school is the best performing comprehensive school in England [6]

The school's facilities include Swimming Pool, Theatre, State of the Art Fitness Centre, Astroturf, Football pitches and will be receiving even more sport facilities as part of the Building Schools for the Future campaign.

Expansion[edit]

In 2004, Thomas Telford federated with local under-performing school, Madeley Academy, placing one of its deputies in charge. This has seen exam results improve and other schemes like this across the UK. The academy is now graded Outstanding by Ofsted and is achieving great exam results thanks to the successful partnership.

The school has helped set up two other schools. These are in Walsall and Sandwell; both are now fully built and operational. These are headed by former Deputy Headteachers at Thomas Telford School. All four current academies compete in Inter-Academy competitions throughout the year in a variety of sports.

Notable alumni[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Moore, Matthew (28 August 2009). "GCSE results: Thomas Telford School named top comprehensive". Telegraph (London). Retrieved 7 June 2010. 
  2. ^ Former student claims medal at European School Games
  3. ^ School choir invited to permform at Royal Albert Hall in London
  4. ^ Newly-knighted head, Kevin Satchwell quizzed, BBC news online, 21st June 2001
  5. ^ Times Article
  6. ^ Moore, Matthew (28 August 2009). "GCSE results: Thomas Telford School named top comprehensive". The Daily Telegraph (London). 
  7. ^ "It’s no problem for Sophie". The Shropshire Star. 2006-10-10. Retrieved 2009-07-03. 
  8. ^ "AnOther Magazine, Insiders: Sharmadean Reid". AnOther Magazine. 2013-06-06. Retrieved 2013-08-06. 

External links[edit]