At Teesdale School we understand that education is about much more than acquiring qualifications. We aim to give students a unique and memorable experience which fosters personal growth as well as the development of skills and dispositions necessary for young people to thrive as adults. At the core of this experience lies inspirational teaching and learning, the nurturing of high quality relationships through vertical tutoring, and the continuous celebration of achievement in all its forms.
Teaching & Learning
At Teesdale School, students and staff have worked together to develop the ‘Teesdale experience’ an approach to learning and teaching based around Guy Claxton’s Learning Muscles. Broadly, this is a commitment to learning and teaching that fosters inspiration, celebration and collaboration. All our staff are expected to plan and deliver lessons that provoke students’ intellectual curiosity and challenge them academically. Lessons should also ensure that students are able to work independently and with others. There is also an expectation that within lessons the hard work of students and their achievements are acknowledged and celebrated.
We are very proud of our reputation as a caring school and our pastoral care and support, particularly of the most vulnerable students, are real strengths of the school. In moving to mixed aged tutor groups in 2009 we believe we have developed strong ’family units’ with students having a personal tutor who is their mentor throughout their time at school. This has helped create a strong ethos and sense of belonging with students of all ages supporting each other through transition points in school.
To further improve our pastoral care, tutor groups also form part of a house. Each house comprises ten tutor groups, each with a very clear shared identity, working on our overarching ethos of inspiration, collaboration and celebration.
Through pastoral time students are actively encouraged to pursue their unique talents. Whatever a student’s talent or interests (at whatever level) the opportunity will be there to be inspired through the wide range of opportunities provided.
By grouping students for pastoral time in mixed age groups we encourage peer support and working together. This also gives students enhanced leadership opportunities and ambassadorial roles.
As a school we care for every child. Year 7 students settle quickly and our high quality pastoral and student support staff ensure that all children remain healthy, happy, safe and successful.
We celebrate and recognise the successes of all our students. Through our on-going rewards system VIVO, through to formal prize giving evenings, students are rewarded for all aspects of positive behaviour.
Each year, following a rigorous appointment process towards the end of Year 10, around twenty prefects are appointed to assist staff in a variety of ways such as leading and managing the school council, heading up the school’s effective peer support group, greeting and guiding visitors to the school and the more traditional corridor and social area patrols associated with the role of prefects .
Prefects at the school have an exclusive common room in the Sixth Form Centre and work out their own duty rota to provide extra support for staff on duty at breaks and lunchtimes. They are also highly visible role models and provide informal advice and support to students
Their uniform is noticeably different, with its solid coloured tie and blazers edged with their house colours.
Teesdale ExtraTeesdale Education Trust is committed to offering a wide range of informal learning opportunities, beyond the school day, which compliment the academic curriculum offered by Teesdale School. These ‘extra’ activities and services are for the benefit of not only Teesdale school students and their families but also to other young people living in Teesdale and the wider community.
Click on the image to the left to visit the Teesdale Extra Blog
World War 1 in Teesdale and Abbottabad
Through The British Council Connecting Classrooms project Teesdale students are taking the opportunity to get involved in their own research into the impact that WW1 had in our local area. We have all sorts of activities planned from interviews to drama workshops. The research is being done in collaboration with our partner school, GGCHSS in Abbottabad, Pakistan who are doing the same project. We have set up a blog to post about what we are all doing.
Click on the image to the left to visit the Connecting Classrooms Blog
Comenius Life Long Learning Programme
Through the Comenius Life Long Learning Programme, students from Teesdale School are collaborating with students from Lycee General et Technologique Europeen in Villers-Cotterets, France and with the Markgrafler Gymnasium in Mullheim, Germany to research and compare the local impact of World War One. Students will take part in visits to all three schools and produce museum displays to showcase their creative response to their research. This website shows some of the excellent work produced by all of the students involved.
Click on the image to the left to visit the Comenius Blog
Friends of Teesdale School
Click on the image to the left to see the FoTs minutes
International School 2014-17
Teesdale School has been awarded the British Council’s prestigious International School Award for 2014-2017, in recognition of its work to bring the world into the classroom.
The award celebrates schools that do outstanding work in international education, such as through links with partner schools overseas. Teesdale School has been involved in a number of international projects over the past year, such as ‘Connecting Classrooms’ project with Pakistan and teacher training in Bulgaria, in addition to now offering Russian at GCSE level due to its on-going partnership with Russian schools. Teesdale was hence awarded the ISA in acknowledgment of its international ethos embedded throughout its curriculum and its year round international activity.
John Rolfe, from the British Council, said, ‘The school’s fantastic international work has rightfully earned it this prestigious award. The International School Award is a great chance for schools to demonstrate the important work they’re doing to bring the world into their classrooms. Adding an international dimension to children’s education ensures that they are truly global citizens and helps prepare them for successful future careers in an increasingly global economy.’
Subject Leader for English Mrs Majorie Bedwell, who will be representing the school to collect the award in October, said the sheer breadth of international work undertaken by the school was the key reason for its success in obtaining the award; “We’re delighted to be receiving this award in response to the school’s on-going international links, and look forward to continuing the successful international projects we are currently involved with.”
Current international programmes the school is taking part in include the Comenius Project, in which students from schools in France and Germany work collaboratively to research the outbreak and impact of WW1, and the partnership with School 41 in Shijiazhuang, China, where students will be visiting for the third time in April 2015.