As Principal of The Farnley Academy, I am delighted to welcome you to our website. In addition to celebrating our many achievements, I hope it provides key information about the life and work of our remarkable school for those keen to know more.
Our mission is a simple yet powerful one – to create a school which is free from cynicism and unwilling to put limits on what young people can achieve. Indeed, we want to empower our young people with the means to bring about positive change in their own lives through the choices they make and to take responsibility for the future. It is to this end that teachers and other professionals work tirelessly for the benefit of our young people. As Principal, I am hugely privileged to witness this hard work have a profoundly positive effect not only on our students' motivation, enjoyment and engagement in learning but their social, moral, spiritual and cultural development.
In five years, the fortunes of our academy have been transformed with the percentage of students gaining five or more GCSEs at grades A*-C including English and mathematics rising sharply from 32% to 73%. In 2014, 84% of students made or exceeded expected progress in English and 85% in mathematics. This is an enormous achievement, placing the academy amongst the very best schools in the country.
In December 2013 the excellence of our work was recognised by Ofsted who judged The Farnley Academy to be Outstanding in all areas. Inspectors noted that 'the quality of teaching is outstanding. Much is inspirational. As a result, students display a rare thirst for learning and an eagerness to succeed.' A copy of the full report is available to download from this website.
Teaching and learning are at the heart of our work. Lessons at The Farnley Academy are highly personalised. Teachers are very aware of what students of different abilities must do to achieve as well as they possibly can and use their assessment data with great precision to tailor tasks to different abilities. Students are very clear what they must do to be 'even better', because this is always stated to them by teachers.
Visitors to our academy always comment on how welcoming and friendly our school is. This comes from our pride in what we have achieved together and our eagerness to share this with others. Each year, we welcome significant numbers of trainee teachers to the academy via our strategic partnership with The Morley Academy's SCITT, in addition to helping transform other schools through our Leeds Teaching Schools Alliance based at The Farnley Academy.
The Farnley Academy is part of The GORSE Academies Trust, a not-for-profit charity whose driving energy is centred on creating exceptional schools within the Leeds city region. The Trust has established a reputation for setting standards of excellence and achieving rates of improvements which have received national attention, not least of all those of The Farnley Academy! The Executive Principal, Sir John Townsley, is a National Leader of Education and gives considerable support to an increasing number of primary and secondary schools across the North.
Of course, a website can't tell the whole story and nor can it do justice to our greatest asset, the young people themselves! Whilst providing a flavour of just how exciting it is to be part of all that we are achieving, if you wish to go beyond the website please make an appointment to come and experience our remarkable academy for yourself!