2013 saw Chesterton Community Sports College go from strength to strength across many aspects of school life including teaching and learning, exam results, extra curricular activities and charity and community work. The GCSE results in 2013 were the best ever achieved by the school with 75% of year 11 gaining 5 or more grades A* - C including English and Mathematics.
Reflecting on 2013, Mrs L Jackson, Executive Headteacher, said: "The success of the school is due to the whole staff commitment in aiming for the highest possible standards from each and every pupil."
The year began with the results of the November GCSE exams which laid the foundations for the outstanding final results in the summer. Visitors from the DFE were impressed on an intial visit to CCSC to begin the process of converting to academy status.
In a new initiative for the school, 400 pupils received Heartstart certificates for completing a course in emergency first aid.
CCSC staged acclaimed performances of the hit musical, 'The Sound of Music' from 11th - 14th February. The 40 strong cast led by Samantha Hadgett in the role of Maria, played to a packed house every night and received standing ovations from the appreciative audiences. The performers were ably supported by musicians, back stage crew (including wardrobe, sound, lighting, props) and front of house team and the show was reviewed in the Sentinel.
The school held a Fairtrade Day on 8th March as part of the national Fairtrade Fortnight. After a Fairtrade assembly, lessons across the curriculum had a Fairtrade theme and there were quizzes, competitions, a raffle and a cake sale. The day was supported by the Co - Op Store in Chesterton Village and Sainsbury's in Newcastle who donated prizes and assisted with fundraising. The £272 raised was used to purchase items for communities overseas via Oxfam with each class choosing an item including chickens, sheep and health supplies.
Also in March, World Maths Day saw KS3 pupils competing in online maths games with pupils from all around the world and World Book Day featured writing competitions won by Amelia Tomkinson and Jonathan Rogers. Matthew Wiwczaryk recieved a silver medal for his performance in the UK Intermediate Maths Challenge.
In PE success was achieved by the swim squad in the Newcastle Swimming Gala with 4th place overall and many outstanding individual performances. On 15th March the PE department organised a sponsored 'Row the Channel' in aid of Comic Relief and teams of staff and pupils kept the oars moving all day.
A charity auction night in aid of Heartstart Staffordshire was held in the school hall on 23rd April. Items for the auction had been generously donated by local organisations and businesses and included Stoke City and Port Vale memorabilia. There was also a raffle, refreshments, displays with ambulances and fire engines and chance to sign up for a Heartstart course. Almost £3000 was raised which was used to buy life saving defibrillators for CCSC and local primary schools.
Maria Webb (then year 7) won a national book cover competition with her design for the book, 'Twelve Minutes To Midnight' and as a result author Christopher Edge visited CCSC and ran writing workshops for pupils.
The Cheerleading squad won the local cheerleading competition for the second year and a group of year 9 students attended the 'Show Racism the Red Card' event at Stoke City and enjoyed talking to some of the players.
A new team of prefects were appointed and started their duties which included helping at evening events, assisting with the smooth running of the school at lunchtimes and helping younger pupils. The retiring year 11 prefects were taken out for a meal to thank them for all their hard work.
Results of the Junior Maths Challenge arrived and Jack Bailey (then year 8) achieved a gold medal award which was a fantastic achievement.
The May half term break was a key revision time for year 11 and study days were held in school by the Maths, History and Science departments to support pupils with their studies.
CCSC was one of three schools that featured in a national article about top performing schools by acclaimed educational body, The Sutton Trust. The trust commended the school for achieving such good examination results and the outstanding progress made by many of our students.
Year 11 students Lucy Roberts and Jordan Reece won regional awards for English and Technology respectively. Lucy won the Sentinel newspaper award for her film review and Jordan obtained second prize in the local Rotary Club design competition with his train project.
Skills Week took place from 24th - 28th June with all pupils in years 7, 8 and 9 enjoying an extended project from the wide choice on offer including: photography, beauty, outdoor pursuits, crafts, going places, drama and music, eco living, sports, IT and archaeology. The archaeological dig in the school grounds was run in conjunction with Big Heritage, an award winning social enterprise, and featured in the Sentinel on 29th June. The MFL department took 45 pupils on a residential visit to northern France to give insights into French culture and chance to practise languages skills.
Year 10 focused on their future as Post 16 Week gave them the opportunity to visit colleges, training providers and employers. The highly informative input gave many students added incentive to work for the best possible GCSE grades to achieve their ambitions.
Sports Day took place on a gloriously sunny 6th July and after a full day of competition for the whole school, Shakespeare House triumphed as the winners. There was something for everyone with kayak races, trampolining, chess, sports quiz, swimming gala, basketball, netball, rounders and football as well as traditional athletics and tug of war.
The class of 2013 held their eagerly awaited Prom Night on 12th July. Year 11 looked fabulous in their dresses and suits and students and staff enjoyed a dinner, disco and fun awards at an evening that is certain to have given year 11 lasting memories of CCSC.
The final event of the academic year was the first ever Certificate Evening on 15th July in which top performing students in years 7 to 10 received subject awards. Additonally there were Overall Academic Excellence Awards for Owen Roberts (Y7), Megan Futter (Y8), Stephanie Brook (Y9) and Rebecca Pagett (Y10).
GCSE results day brought outstanding success for CCSC with 75% of year 11 achieving 5 or more GCSE grades A* - C including English and Maths, which made us one of the highest performing schools in the area. There were also significant increases in the numbers of A and A* grades achieved, many new subjects such as Psychology, Media and Statistics performed well and progress measures were excellent.
The new academic year began and learning was supported by trips in several subjects including a History department visit to Conwy Castle, a Geography field trip to Liverpool and a Maths visit to Keele University.
Open Night on 26th September was highly successful with record numbers of prospective pupils and their parents visiting the school; admiring the state of the art facilities and being impressed by the excellent results, achievements and ethos of the school. Many families then took up the offer of a tour during the school day to see pupils and staff at work. The new school website launched on the same day and provides an informative and up to date online record of achievements at CCSC.
A evening workshop for year 7 able and talented pupils and their parents was held on 9th October. The 100 participants took part in a range of fun and challenging activities. Later in the term a similar event for year 9 focused on the skills needed to achieve top grades at GCSE. At the end of the month year 11 students who are part of the Master Class Programme visited Oxford University.
The MFL department held a well attended evening meeting to explain to parents and carers how they can support their child with learning French and Spanish.
A group of pupils visited Westminster and held a discussion with our local MP at the Houses of Parliament. They also enjoyed a tour of many of the iconic London landmarks such as Tower Bridge, The London Eye, Tate Modern and the Cutty Sark.
There was a focus on charity events in November with the school supporting the Poppy Appeal and a staff and students charity netball match in aid of the BBC Children In Need. Year 9 student, Lyndsay Goodfellow-Dolar, was inspired to organise a cake sale in support of the Philippines Typhoon Appeal and with the help of other students raised £200.
On the sporting front the U16 boys badminton squad came in third place in the Annual District Competition.
CCSC again supported the Salvation Army Christmas Toy Appeal which assists local families in need over the festive period. A collection, raffle, and film screening raised £623 and Teresa Dunn of the Salvation Army was overwhelmed by the generosity of the pupils. A Community Day involved pupils visiting Chesterton Lodge to bring Christmas cheer to elderly residents.
Many pupils enjoyed a trip to the New Vic Theatre to see a performance of 'The 101 Dalmations'.
Learning in science was enhanced for year 9 by a visit from Zoolab which provided the opportunity for students to handle and learn about a range of animals including snakes, spiders and small mammals.
Languages Day on 17th December had a South American theme and lessons across the curriculum included a focus on the continent and the languages spoken there. Games, quizzes and refreshments all helped to raise awareness of South America. In the evening the Christmas Concert featured musical items from Churchfields Primary and Bursley Academy.
In December the school achieved Academy Status.
Mr R Swindells, Associate Headteacher, explained: " The school will now be able to offer a more innovative curriculum, tailored to our pupils which will further raise standards of achievement."
Mrs L Jackson