Christmas Carol Service

A polite reminder:

We would be delighted if you could join us at our Christmas Carol Service this evening.

This candlelit service is a fitting end to our term and marks the beginning of our Christmas celebrations. In the beautiful surroundings of St Peter’s Church, in Oughtrington our students and young people play a central role in this service. Some are given the opportunity to recite poetry or deliver readings, while others may sing in one or more of the School’s many choirs or play music.

The evening concludes with refreshments served at the church

Please note, the service will now commence at 7pm, not 6.30pm as previously stated.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Come along and join us for this very special service, all are welcome to attend.


The Sunday Times Schools Guide

The Sunday Times has recently published its latest Schools Guide, listing the highest achieving schools in the UK, and we have again been ranked amongst the top ten highest performing comprehensive schools in the whole of the North West, and the top 30 even when selective grammar schools are included. The Sunday Times focus on numbers of students getting A*-B grades at A’ level and grades 9-7 (the old A*-A) grades at GCSE.

Mr Williams said:
“These are not official league tables and the methodology in many respects is somewhat dubious so we take them with a pinch of salt. Nevertheless, they do provide further evidence of what a strong position we are now in as a school.”

GCSE London History Trip

Fifty-one Year 10 GCSE History students have just returned from a trip to London to support their GCSE course, exploring the Tower of London, the Imperial War Museum and Westminster Abbey.

“Why are the people who are commemorated in Westminster Abbey all men?” said one student after a tour of a building that pre-dates 1066. This thought-provoking question and the subsequent discussion that arose about how and who to remember from History, highlights why it is important for students to get outside the classroom and explore History in the world around us.

Students even had the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of one of the most notorious serial killers of the 19th century whilst on a Jack the Ripper walking tour of Whitechapel. The students were immersed in a world of extreme poverty, crime and the lives of the London working poor. They also learnt the origins of the phrase: ‘daylight robbery’ after being taught about the plight of poor Londoners forced to brick up their windows rather than pay an unfair window tax.

The students were allowed access around the cloisters of Westminster Abbey and into the resting place of one of our fiercest monarchs and her family – Elizabeth I. They learnt about Elizabeth’s relationship with her courtiers and how the Queen asserted her authority upon her subjects through a religious settlement that was designed to end a period of religious unrest and discontent.

At the Tower of London, students saw first-hand some of the forms of punishment and torture used on those imprisoned for the most serious of offences, from murder and heresy to treason. “Would that not hurt?” asked one student as they examined the ‘the rack’, a medieval torture method designed to stretch out the victims and extract their darkest secrets.

With thanks to Mr Hayes, Miss Millington, Mr Gifford and Miss Walton for their support and time during the trip.

The pupils had a fantastic time and were very grateful – they even found time to get some personalised chocolates to commemorate their trip.

Miss Yates
Teacher of History

Year 11 – Remembering Effectively

If, as suggested by cognitive psychologist Daniel Willingham, “memory is the residue of thought”, we must make sure that our revision is rooted in the process of “thinking hard”.

This was the premise for our latest study skills session with year 11, with a real focus on using knowledge organisers to secure the key concepts that students need to succeed in each subject.

A condensed version of this training can be found here.

Performance Data Published by the DFE

The Department for Education recently published some provisional data on 2018 GCSE results, which has confirmed what we said in the summer about there being plenty of reason to be delighted with our own performance.

The headline measure these days is ‘Progress 8’ – a measure of the progress made by students in 8 GSCE subjects using their performance in KS2 SATs as a baseline. Our score of 0.25 means that Lymm High students made significantly more progress than average, even compared to schools that have similarly able cohorts. To put this into context, this score places us in the top ten schools across the whole of Warrington, Cheshire East and Cheshire West & Chester (a total of 97 schools) for the progress made by our students from their KS2 starting points.

In terms of attainment, our ‘Attainment 8 score’ of 54.8 means we are in the top five of the ninety seven schools across Cheshire and Warrington and in the top 12% of schools in the whole country. This pattern is virtually identical for more traditional measures such as the numbers of students gaining 9-4 grades (equivalent to the old A*-C) or grades 9-5 in English and Maths.

One of the things we are especially proud of is that we have achieved such a strong Progress 8 score whilst maintaining an entirely ethical approach to our curriculum and entry policies. There are a number of ‘games’ that can be played in order to maximise performance in league tables, but we refuse to play them. For example, we could improve our Progress 8 score further by entering students for certain ‘soft options’ that might generate more points for the league tables but would be of no discernible benefit to the individual students concerned. Conversations with parents thus far suggest that you support us in such an approach, and we are grateful for your support and understanding.

Once again, huge well done to last year’s GCSE students and all the parents and staff who supported them!