Valley Gardens Middle School

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Valley Gardens Middle School
Vgms logo.JPG
Established 1957
Type Community middle school
Headteacher Mr. Godfrey
Location Valley Gardens
Whitley Bay
Tyne and Wear
NE25 9AQ
Local authority North Tyneside
DfE number 392/4026
DfE URN 108636 Tables
Ofsted Reports
Gender Coeducational
Ages 9–13

Valley Gardens Middle School is located in Monkseaton, Whitley Bay in North Tyneside, United Kingdom. The Headteacher is David Godfrey. It is the largest middle school in Whitley Bay, with about 730 pupils on roll and SATs results are significantly above the national average. It serves a mainly suburban catchment.

Its motto is "What do you want to achieve?"

Most students transfer to Whitley Bay High School at the end of Year 8 due to its close proximity.

Prior to school reorganisation in the 1970s the building was a secondary modern; hence it has always had relatively good technology facilities for a middle school.


The school has had a varied history. The school was built in 1957. It closed through the summer of 1973 and turned from Whitley Bay County Secondary School into Valley Gardens Middle School . For the academic year 1973-74 it operated as a Middle School with only years 2,3 and 4. Year 1 of the Middle school commenced in 1974-75. In 2000 the school was threatened with closure after North Tyneside council wanted to turn to a two-tier system instead of the three-tier system that was then used, this did not happen. In 2002 an extra year five class was added to take the numbers from 5 classes to 6, at that time every other year had six classes already. This move was taken to increase capacity and increase chances of getting into sixth form in later life. Also in 2002 the school governors encouraged the local education authority to provide more classrooms and modernise the buildings. [1]


The school has two main publications:
The Valley Gardens Gazette, which is a newspaper containing events in school written by pupils. The Valley Gardens Gazette is published once a term and is sold by the reporters at a break and lunch time.
The other is a formal publication called the VG Magazine, this features literacy work by pupils and is sold in school and at local bookshop Paper Treasures priced at £1. [2]


The school is a medium size with:

  • 5 Mobile classrooms,
  • 2 ICT rooms,
  • 1 LRC(Library),
  • 1 Music room,
  • 1 Design room,
  • 2 Design technology rooms,
  • 1 Art room,
  • 1 Gym,
  • 1 Dining/ Assembly Hall,
  • 19 Main school classrooms and
  • 6 Year 5 classrooms


Recently, the school has been renovated to fit the large number of pupils in the school. A new year five block with state-of-the-art interactive whiteboards in each classroom has been built and was opened by the former Foreign Secretary, David Miliband. These boards have now been fitted into nearly every classroom in the school. The front of the school has been rebuilt with a new main office, a head teacher's room and a meeting room. Two special needs rooms have been also built to help with the number of pupils on the special needs register. This is all to bring the school from its 1970s style into the 21st Century.[3]

Residential Trips[edit]

The school takes pupils on many trips abroad including;

  • Germany (Christmas Market)
  • France (French Trip and Skiing)
  • Spain (museums and visiting a Spanish school)

It also takes pupils on trips in the UK such as High Borrans.


Nearly every year the school puts on a school production featuring around 60 pupils.


The school has been awarded numerous awards and trophies. One of them is the International School Award, which celebrates the school success in doing international activities such as an International Day in 2005, plus the schools high success in languages. It was presented by BBC News reader Anna Ford in 2006. The school received an Outstanding review from Ofsted in 2013.


Valley Gardens normally have SATs results above the national average.
The SATs results for 2006 are listed in the table and graph below. [4] [5]

Level English Maths Science
Level 4 or Above 88% 79% 95%
Level 5 53% 36% 56%
Pupils Absent or Not Able to Access Test 1% 1% 1%

In terms of Value Added targets, the school achieves 99% of the National target, which in the context of a low Free School Meals (FSM) demographic, would indicate that it is under performing in terms of the value it adds from Year 5 onwards.


The school has an extensive uniform that is designed to be smart but comfortable. Also, pupils are not allowed to wear any make-up and girls are only allowed their hair in pony-tails or leave it down. [6]


Boys PE Kit[edit]


Girls PE Kit[edit]

Famous pupils, past[edit]


The school has appeared in the local media many times for various events including:

  • The opening of a new Year 5 block.[7]
  • A spate of thefts from the school, including a projector and the attempted theft of an interactive whiteboard.[8]
  • Winning various awards, including the International Schools Award [9]
  • The schools fundraising efforts, including major charitable donations and fundraising events.[10]
  • Sporting events [11]
  • Concerns over a new fence [12]
  • Creative Writing [13]
  • Trips in other countries[14]
  • Mock Trials [15]
  • Vandalism to the school building and surroundings.[16]
  • In school achievements.[17]
  • Competitions.[18]
  • Major occurrences in school.[19]
  • The sudden illness of twenty pupils in a science lesson.[20]


  1. ^ "School a success after near closure". Whitley Bay News Guardian. June 22, 2002. 
  2. ^ "Magazine showcases pupils' quality writing in print". Whitley Bay News Guardian. July 21, 2004. 
  3. ^ "Planning Application". North Tyneside Council. 2008. 
  4. ^ "SATs Results". DFES. 2006. 
  5. ^ "SATs Results". BBC. November 2, 2004.  Check date values in: |year= / |date= mismatch (help)
  6. ^ "Uniform List". Valley Gardens Middle School. 2007. 
  7. ^ "Opening of Year 5 Block". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2006. 
  8. ^ "Thefts from School". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2006. 
  9. ^ "Award Winning School". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2006. 
  10. ^ "Charitable Donations". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2007. 
  11. ^ "Sporting Events". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2006. 
  12. ^ "Concerns over new fence". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2005. 
  13. ^ "Creative Writing". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2005. 
  14. ^ "Trips to other countries". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2006. 
  15. ^ "Mock Trials". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2006. 
  16. ^ "Vandalism To School". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2005. 
  17. ^ "In School Achievements". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2005. 
  18. ^ "Competitions". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2005. 
  19. ^ "School Success After Near Closure". Whitley Bay News Guardian. 2006. 
  20. ^ "Science block sealed as Tyneside pupils fall ill". BBC News. July 19, 2010. 

External links[edit]