Wakefield Girls’ High School is recognised as world class in recent awards
Wakefield Girls’ High School, Yorkshire, is recognised as world class in recent awards
29th June 2020 — Wakefield Girls’ High School is celebrating. It has been recognised as one of the very best schools in the world and become accredited as a High Performance Learning World Class School.
The award recognises schools at the forefront of educational thinking with exceptional outcomes for students. Under the leadership of Headteacher, Ms Boyes, Wakefield Girls’ High School now joins an elite global community of schools from Dubai to Mexico who routinely share practice and support each other.
“We chose to adopt the unique HPL teaching and learning framework to make even greater gains for all the girls we teach,” explains Ms Boyes. “Using this framework we can help each girl to develop the cognitive skills, values, attitudes and attributes needed to succeed in her learning and life. We are thrilled to be recognised as a school at the forefront of educational thinking that has met the demanding standards of the HPL award.
Neuroscience and cognitive psychology research has shown that there is not a fixed level of ability amongst young learners, and that the brain is more malleable than once thought. HPL provides a style of learning that removes barriers to achievement, by giving children an opportunity to develop in their own time. This reflects Wakefield Girls’ long-held belief that there is 'room at the top' for more students than traditional approaches suggest.
I am incredibly proud of how our teachers and students have embraced the High Performance Learning style of teaching and learning.I would particularly like to thank David Eggleston, Deputy Head and Joanna Rhodes, Assistant Head for their energy, their commitment and passion for driving the HPL philosophy in our school.
While GCSE and A Level results are high at Wakefield Girls’, success is not limited to exam results; it is about achieving academic excellence alongside a holistic education. From confidence, collaboration and risk-taking to perseverance, resilience, agile thinking and concern for society - the school ensures that the girls they teach are prepared for study, work and life. “
Professor Deborah Eyre, Chair at High Performance Learning (the accreditation body) says:
“Truly world-class schools understand that while grades are important, producing students who are intellectually and socially confident, work-place and life-ready with a global outlook and concern for others is our true aim. Wakefield Girls’ High School has worked hard to strengthen its practice and to move closer to the vision of every child becoming a high performer.”
Staff and students at Wakefield Girls’ High School had to go through a rigorous and demanding two-year journey, which was supported by HPL, to encourage all children to achieve success academically and throughout their lives.
Top grade success for Wakefield Girls’ High School
Wakefield Girls’ High School is celebrating after students secure an impressive set of GCSE results, with a 100 percent pass rate. Students achieved 94 percent at grade 5 or higher and 63 percent of all grades fell in the 9 to 7 bracket.
27th August 2019 — Wakefield Girls’ High School is celebrating after students secure an impressive set of GCSE results, with a 100 percent pass rate. Students achieved 94 percent at grade 5 or higher and 63 percent of all grades fell in the 9 to 7 bracket.
Furthermore, 43 percent of results were graded 9 or 8, equivalent to an A*. Four girls achieved grade 9 in all of their subjects, an extremely rare and difficult achievement.
Many departments achieved outstanding results including Art and Design, English Language and English Literature, History and Religious Studies.
Ms Heidi-Jayne Boyes, Head at Wakefield Girls’ High School, said:
“I am delighted to be celebrating some remarkable results with our young women of tomorrow. Our girls have worked so hard and I am incredibly proud of them all, for they have risen to the challenge of our high expectations and many have exceeded their potential. These GCSE results reflect the high standards of a Wakefield Girls’ High School education and the commitment of our talented staff.
“Wakefield Girls’ High School not only inspires girls to be intellectually curious, but our girls have achieved these results alongside finding time to embrace all aspects of school life: music, sport, creative arts, charity work and much more besides. They all have exciting futures ahead of them and I look forward to warmly welcoming them back here in September to start their A-Level studies."
Ms Boyes was keen to discuss the school’s innovative approach to teaching, known as ‘High Performance Learning’, whereby all students are seen as having the potential to be high performers in life. By instilling high expectations and developing a range of skills, values and attitudes, students are encouraged to become independent and lifelong learners. Whilst this philosophy continues to gather momentum in the school, it is clear from looking at the results that the girls are benefiting.
Wakefield Girls’ High School celebrates A Level success
Wakefield Girls’ High School is thrilled to announce that this year’s cohort of A Level students have achieved 42 percent A* to A grades.
27th August 2019 — Wakefield Girls’ High School is thrilled to announce that this year’s cohort of A Level students have achieved 42 percent A* to A grades.
Almost 70 percent of results achieved were at grades A* to B and overall 100 percent of the school’s students achieved three or more A Level passes, with 18 girls achieving an impressive three or more A* or A grades overall.
Many departments achieved outstanding results including Art & Design, Classical Civilisation, Product Design, Drama & Theatre Studies, English Language, English Literature, Geography, Government & Politics, Latin, Further Maths, Music, Religious Studies, Spanish and Textiles.
Ms Heidi-Jayne Boyes, Head at Wakefield Girls’ High School, said:
“These results are testament to our students’ – and our staff’s - hard work and effort over the last two years and I am delighted to see the girls being rewarded for this.
We know that the reformed A Levels are rigorous and challenging and I am very proud of all of our girls. This year’s cohort has chosen exciting and varied pathways for the next stage of their journeys, with over one third of girls going onto read STEM based subjects at university.
I would like to wish all the girls the very best of luck for the next stage of their lives whether this is heading in to employment, taking a gap year or going to university. Whatever they are choosing to do, I know they will do it to the best of their ability, that they will continue to flourish and I hope, be very happy.”
Year 12 student Jasmine Kaur from Wakefield Girls’ High School won 1st prize in the prestigious Molecular Modeller of the Year 2019 competition and is interviewed by the BBC for feature on the chemistry of cosmetics.
27th August 2019 — Year 12 student Jasmine Kaur from Wakefield Girls’ High School won 1st prize in the prestigious Molecular Modeller of the Year 2019 competition, run by the University of York. The competition was held for the first time this year and was run nationally for secondary and sixth form students. The task was to build an original but accurate model of ethyl butanoate (a pineapple smelling ester) using readily available materials. Jasmine’s prize winning entry was credited by judges for its fantastic use of recycled old chemistry notes to make the atoms and pencil bonds. Jasmine has been awarded a trophy and a biochemistry molecular modelling kit, as well as being invited back to the University of York for a tour of the chemistry department.
When asked what inspired her award winning creation, Jasmine explained: "I had an idea to create my model using my old chemistry notes, as it allowed me to recycle the paper. I also thought it was a unique idea to use my pencils for the bonds and I incorporated the ester scent with the pineapple spray.”
Dr Sarah Duerden-Brown, head of chemistry at Wakefield Girls’ High School, said of the award win: “We are absolutely thrilled that Jasmine has won such a prestigious national molecular model competition. We were blown away with her attention to detail and how she had transformed some old chemistry revision notes into atoms and used pencils for covalent bonds. Not forgetting the pineapple perfume sprayed over it!”
Jasmine has also been interviewed by the BBC, as part of a BBC News and BBC World Service feature on the chemistry of cosmetics and engagement with young people in chemistry. The recent filming took place at Wakefield Girls’ High School, where girls from Year 9, 10 and 12 demonstrated their organic chemistry skills by making a range of products including bath bombs and lip balm. The A level students extracted essential oils from plant material and discussed the chemistry of subtly different structures, called enantiomers and the effect on smell and biological interactions.
Filming took place over the course of an afternoon and included a student discussion on the wide range of organic and physical chemistry concepts in the production of cosmetics, as well as how to make your own cosmetics and the influence of social media. The item focuses on the exploration of cosmetics and make-up as hooks to get more secondary and sixth form students across the UK interested in chemistry.
The BBC contacted Dr Joanna Rhodes, assistant head and director of Sixth Form at Wakefield Girls’ High School, after reading her article The Creative Chemistry of Cosmetics. Dr Rhodes said: “Cosmetics and make-up are topics that interest many of our girls. Harnessing their enthusiasm for these beauty products provides links to challenging topics in chemistry, as well as promoting cosmetic chemistry as a career option”.