In a year where the proportion of students receiving top grades was the lowest seen since 2007, Canford pupils have once again bucked the trend with excellent results at both A Level and Pre-U.
The Bourne Academy
In December 2007, Canford was approached by the DfE to consider the possibility of sponsoring an academy. After an assessment of several different schools, it was agreed in the Autumn of 2008 that Canford would sponsor King’s High School in Hadow Road, Bournemouth.
As a sponsor, Canford would offer time, expertise and support without financial input. Renamed The Bourne Academy, the school opened its doors to pupils in September 2010.
A key part of the vision for the new academy was that it would be at the heart of the community of East Howe, offering local families an excellent education, new opportunities and facilities available to all. Raising pupils’ expectations, building their self-confidence and teaching them appropriate skills that allow them to build a successful career and contribute to society were, and remain, central to The Bourne Academy’s aims.
The sponsors’ belief that good education depends crucially on the relationships between staff, pupils, parents and the other stakeholders was another core part of the vision.
Mutual support, pride, ambition, trust and high expectations combine to allow impressive academic achievements against a background of respect.
The Bourne Academy’s vision is articulated clearly through the mnemonic, ASPIRE, to develop citizens who are ambitious, self-confident, physically literate, independent learners, resilience and emotionally literate.
Exam results have improved dramatically in the years since the academy opened, with this year's A*-C rate putting it in equal first amongst non-selective Bournemouth schools. A £10 million investment programme has included building work, completed in September 2013, for a new Maths and English block and Music and Drama studios. This coincided with the opening of a new Sixth Form, enabling The Bourne Academy to offer a quality education for boys and girls aged 11-18 years.
Since becoming linked, Canford and The Bourne Academy have started a number of joint initiatives. ‘Improving Outcomes’ was the title of a joint professional development conference in April 2016 bringing together the teachers of Canford School and those of The Bourne Academy. The aim was for teachers from both schools to share knowledge and experiences and to develop their understanding of best practice and techniques to develop pupil learning. Four Canford staff serve as governors on The Bourne Academy Governing Body and there are regular reports on its work to the Canford Governing Body so that joint initiatives can be discussed and explored.
Canford also offers the opportunity for Year 11 pupils from The Bourne Academy to apply for a scholarship to Sixth Form at Canford, and since 2013 has welcomed seven pupils to the school so far. The pupils who apply go through a scholarship procedure of exams and interviews, and those who have succeeded in gaining a scholarship place have thrived in their new environment.
Other initiatives include:
- A vibrant, dynamic and well attended course of Saturday lessons for gifted and talented pupils from three local state primary schools that feed into The Bourne Academy;
- Canford Sixth Formers spend Monday afternoons with pupils at The Bourne Academy working together on a variety of projects and providing extra help to increase the pupils' confidence in time for GCSEs;
- Bourne Academy pupils attend future careers fairs and speaker events at Canford School;
- Canford pupils have worked together with those from The Bourne Academy on the F24 racing car ‘design and race’ project.
We are extremely proud to be one of only a handful independent schools in the country to fully sponsor an Academy school. The success of our link with The Bourne Academy is evident not only through impressive attendance records and examination results, but also in the joint engagement between staff and pupils from both schools within and beyond the classroom.Ben Vessey - Headmaster
The Bourne Academy, Hadow Road, West Howe, Bournemouth BH10 5HS