As Headteacher of Whitworth Community High School, I am delighted to write the introduction to our new prospectus. I want to share with you what’s important to us as a school community - our vision and values; to focus on where we are heading; and to show what we can offer yourselves and your child – and indeed to outline our high expectations of all students who choose to apply for a place here.
Whitworth Community High School was designated as ‘Good’ by Ofsted in December 2014 and in December 2015 an Ofsted HMI team determined our leadership and management, policies and practices relating to all aspects of Safeguarding to be ‘exemplary’: an accolade of which we are also exceptionally proud.
Our vision is simple: to become an outstanding school and our focus remains on 'Climbing Higher'. We are committed to raising levels of progress and thus raising results for all our young people - and to do this we must raise their aspirations. We have inspirational and committed specialist staff who are determined to drive the school forwards; an experienced leadership team who set a clear and ambitious pathway to the summit; and well-informed governors who challenge and support us on our journey.
We are popular and over-subscribed, and this reflects our enhanced reputation within the local and wider community. Families choose to go onto our waiting list for places, wanting their children to belong to a school with a vibrant future, where 'Students talk excitedly about the improvements seen in the school over recent years' (Ofsted December 2014).
Ofsted's HMI team found 'This is a school that values individuals, recognising that everyone is different but equal' and we have the same high expectations of all our students, regardless of their ability - and of their parents and carers. To achieve success and 'Climb Higher' we need all our families to want the best for their children, to recognise the school's expertise, and to be prepared to support the school's values and principles.
The Rossendale Valley is a great place to learn, to live and to work, but we want our students to broaden their horizons and to be ready to take their place as responsible, thoughtful, global citizens and Ofsted in 2015 observed: 'There is a holistic approach to developing confident, respectful young people who are ready to take their place in adult society.'
Respect is central to everything we do: our 7 Respects are non-negotiable; visitors comment on the respectful atmosphere around the school; we are proud of the positive relationships between and amongst staff and students. Ofsted saw our values in action: 'They (students) demonstrate a real care for one another and their teachers ... they demonstrate excellent British values, particularly in tolerance of, and respect for each other ... They feel safe and behaviour is good.'
We expect our students to work hard and to have high aspirations; to involve themselves in school life and to make a positive contribution; and, above all, to share in our commitment to 'Climbing Higher.' Whitworth Community High School is both at the heart and in the hearts of the community, and our achievements and successes are shared and celebrated not only by students, staff, governors and families, but by those around us. Our students are 'immensely proud of their school' (Ofsted 2015) - as indeed we all are.
If you believe this is the right school for your child, and if you are prepared to support our school's values, then I look forward to showing you round and introducing you to students and staff, so that you can see for yourself how Whitworth Community High School is 'Climbing Higher.'
Mrs G Middlemas