Studying GCSEs at Halliford School

Studying GCSEs at Halliford School

By Mr James Davies, Headmaster

The world for which our children are being readied has changed. That is undeniable. A preparation for life that is grounded solely in the statistical outcomes of grades and marks is just not enough anymore. Creating young individuals who function like computers, merely recalling information when prompted, holds little meaning in a digital age where vast knowledge often resides in our pockets.

Now, more than ever, our role is to nurture humanity – to cultivate good people. Our aim must be to help our children become the kind of individuals that the future desperately needs and seeks.

Halliford is a warm-hearted School founded on strong family values where we are proud to know and be respectful of every student as an individual. Our theme ‘Come as you are. Go as all you can be’ perfectly encapsulates our mission to encourage and support Hallifordians to flourish and become the best version of themselves that they can possibly be. Our boys join us for their seven-year journey from 11 to 18 and we warmly welcome girls to join our co-educational Sixth Form, which provides our senior students with the opportunities to excel in a more independent environment. Halliford is an incredible community to belong to and spend part of their only childhood.

Recognised by the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) as ‘Excellent in all areas’ in December 2022, our pursuit of excellence is characterised by academic ambition balanced with academic sensitivity. We inspire Hallifordians within a community founded on exceptional teaching and learning, outstanding pastoral care and first-class sporting, cultural and co-curricular opportunities. To browse a person’s past and read Halliford School should mean something, and it does.

As students transition into Year 10, they stand at the threshold of an exciting phase, allowing them to delve into subjects that pique their curiosity. This pivotal choice-making juncture might be accompanied by confusion, but our seasoned staff excels in guiding students through this selection process, ensuring informed decisions are made leading to excellent outcomes.

The rigour of GCSEs is undeniable, emphasising terminal examinations after two years of study. Our Year 9 Study Skills course primes students for this evaluative journey, cultivating study techniques and strategies for success.

To facilitate informed decisions, we furnish our students with a comprehensive guide outlining available choices, course content, and decision-making strategies. We encourage thorough perusal of this guide and recommend discussions with tutors and subject teachers.

In February, our Year 9 GCSE Options Evening brings Heads of Department together with students and parents, facilitating detailed discussions about subjects and their potential trajectories. Following this event, students make their preliminary choices.

Halliford’s educational canvas extends beyond the classroom, advocating active participation in a wide range of co-curricular activities. Leadership roles in these pursuits foster character development, imparting skills coveted by universities and employers alike. We aspire for well-rounded students who ardently engage in both work and play.

Our broad curriculum and diverse co-curricular initiatives aim to ignite students’ passions. The conclusion of Year 9 marks a shift from breadth to depth, allowing for in-depth study and skill mastery during GCSEs.

We proudly consider ourselves a small school, without any apologies. The advantage of our size is our deep familiarity with one another. We see and know each student beyond the crowd; no one ever gets lost here. Our flexible timetable accommodates individual preferences, enabling unique combinations of optional subjects. Despite our size, we are well-equipped, both on-site and through extensive partnerships worldwide. We have the resources to deliver comprehensive and in-depth subject matter, and we will always strive to make the impossible possible if it benefits our students.

A student aptly remarked, “Initially challenging, Chemistry GCSE soon became my favourite subject with the support of my teachers, and I am now building on my knowledge at A Level. I enjoyed learning about fractional distillation and carrying out a range of practical activities. My teachers provided many extra-curricular opportunities for me, and I gained a lot of transferable skills, including teamwork and resilience.”

Irrespective of chosen subjects, we instil high expectations, challenging students to exceed them. Guided by expert advice, independent choices, and exceptional provisions, students embark on a journey towards remarkable GCSE outcomes and a seamless transition into the Halliford Sixth Form.

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