Chaucer School, Canterbury
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Chaucer School in May 2013
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|Houses||5 Colleges of Learning
(Assisi, Athena, Curie,
Da Vinci, Marlowe) (Defunct as of the 2013-2014 academic year.)
Former names of Chaucer include, Chaucer Technology School, Geoffrey Chaucer Technology School, Canterbury Technical High School for Boys
In February 2014 Kent County Council announced the school would shut due to low pupil intake and poor standards. Just weeks before Swale Academies Trust had promised a conversion to academy and the sale of land to rebuild the school, it is believed these plans have been scrapped and that the school will shut. Shortly after the proposal was made public, a petition on Change.org was created in an attempt to revert Kent County Council's decision however this method failed. The school closed in September 2015.
The school was founded before World War II as the Canterbury Technical High School for Boys, which shared the old hospital building on Longport St with a girls' equivalent (which became Barton Court Grammar School) and the Technical College (now Canterbury College). In September 1967 it moved to the current site on Spring Lane.
Around the same time as the implementation of the college system in 2008, the school uniform was updated following a school-wide consultation, the senior management of the school was restructured and a re-branding of the school's image was completed, with the school now often referred to as "Chaucer Tech".
In Spring 2009, Chaucer was used in a BBC Inside Out South East television news feature to highlight the issue of asbestos in local school buildings. it was detected in two small cupboards that were used to store asbestos before it was linked with lung disorders. The school was used as the case study example of one of the 90% of local schools with asbestos. The school was found to have asbestos (like 554 out of 599 schools in Kent) but was shown to have effectively dealt with the problem.
Pupils from the school were chosen to form part of a "guard of honour" for athletes at the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games, displaying artistic creations their school made to celebrate the event.
Chaucer had a 12 classroom teaching block built. These previously housed a large majority of English and Maths Lessons, but now has been changed to cover Humanities subjects such as Geography and History (as a result of the College System). It is often referred to as the "Humanities Block", "H Block" or "W Block." W was after Graham Wade, the school's fifth headteacher, who died of cancer.
The school completed a new Sixth Form Building in October 2008. Named the Fuller Block, after a former Chair of the Governing Body who died, it houses a common room, assembly room, staff offices and multiple teaching rooms primarily for use by the Post 16 (or Sixth Form) of the school.
Organisation and administration
In 2008, Chaucer introduced a new "Colleges of Learning" System, in which every student, aside from "Post 16/Sixth Form" students, are assigned into a specific subject group. The 5 colleges are named Da Vinci, Curie, Marlowe, Assisi and Athena and are made up of different subject areas (e.g. Da Vinci College includes Mathematics and Design Technology). Subject groups changed classrooms to reflect this shift and so generally the colleges are geographically situated around the school site. The college system is no longer being used since the beginning of the 2013/14 academic year.
Chaucer Technology School was one of the many schools in the Kent LEA that used SIMS (School Information Management System), a Management Information System (MIS) developed by Capita's Education Services. The school also agreed with Capita to provide a case study, in which the former head teacher Simon Murphy says “It is fundamental for students to understand where they are and what strategies they need to reach their potential and for parents to also understand, so they can support their children. Using the tools within SIMS we are able to support this”.
League tables published by the BBC based on 2008 A-levels rank Chaucer as the 56th best school in Kent. According to the BBC, in 2008 A-Level students achieved an average of 620.4 QCDA points, against a national average of 739.8 and 31% of students achieved five or more grade C results (or equivalent) at GCSE, including Maths and English.
- "Admission to Secondary School in Kent 2011" (pdf). Kent County Council. p. 54. Retrieved 9 January 2012.
- BBC Inside Out South East article
- Murphy, Chris (27 May 2012), "School pupils to form guard of honour for 2012 athletes", Kent on Sunday, KOS Media
- "Secondary schools in Kent". BBC News (BBC). Retrieved 12 June 2014.
- "Chaucer Technology School". BBC News (BBC). Retrieved 12 June 2014.
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