The school’s Grammar School Intake (GSI) programme started 4 years ago and targets students who can work around grammar school standards. The aim of the programme is to provide a grammar school curriculum experience within our outstanding, inclusive and caring comprehensive school. This includes studying a particularly challenging curriculum in class, in addition to being invited to participate in opportunities outside of class.
Students are selected to be part of the school’s GSI programme on the basis of their Year 6 SATs scores and CATs scores. Parents of students selected to be part of the GSI programme will be invited to a GSI Information Evening in the autumn term of Year 7. The purpose of this evening is to give you more information about the plans we have for your son, throughout his wider school life as well as in the classroom.
Many subjects offer your son the chance to undertake independent tasks, outside of the classroom, to develop his learning in that subject area. These include a Book Review club in English, the UKMT which is a national maths competition, and Medical Ethics debates in Science.
In addition, a programme of exciting trips and experiences is planned to stretch and challenge your son throughout his five years at Woolwich Polytechnic. Last year, Y7 GSI students visited the Emirates Aviation Experience at the O2, to learn more about the aviation industry. Y7-9 GSI students also attended a GSI Maths Puzzle Day where their problem solving and teamwork skills were put to the test! In the summer term, Y9 GSI students went to Kingswood Activity centre for an overnight revision trip, where they gained lots of new experiences, such as abseiling and zipwires, in between preparing for their end-of-year exams.
Year 10-11 students are offered dedicated ‘7-9 Clubs’ before and after school to help them reach their full potential in their GCSEs, in addition to various other trips, projects and clubs throughout the year.
Year 11-13 students become part of the dedicated Top Achievers’ Programme, which is for the most academically able students in the year group.
We also encourage collaboration between GSI students in each year group. In collaboration with Lloyds Bank, a group of 24 GSI students from Y7-12 take part in an annual ‘Hackathon’. This year, the students had to work in mixed year-group teams to design and pitch a technological solution to mental health issues. These were then presented to a senior manager from Lloyds at their head office in the city, which was a terrific opportunity for the students.
This project was introduced in September 2018. The Access Project provide an in-school staff mentor who will help students choose the right courses and universities for them. This also includes personal statement clinics and practise interviews. In addition they provide three extra-curricular societies for sixth form students, bringing together students from across the country who are interested in applying to Oxbridge, Medicine, Dentistry and Law to offer support for a successful application to these exceptionally competitive courses or institutions.
In conjunction with the Access Project, we will arrange trips to universities, have talks from guest speakers, and run information sessions for both students and parents. The support provided includes help choosing suitable degree courses and universities. The Access Project currently work with students across the country along with professional institutions such as KPMG, Linklaters, Slaughter and May and the Cabinet Office to raise students’ attainment. This project has been developed to promote access to Russell Group universities.
Woolwich Poly Sixth Form runs a dedicated Top Achievers’ Programme (TAP), for the most academically able students in a year group. TAP is run by Dr Balogun, a Cambridge graduate who provides personalised support for TAP scholars. This includes support with university applications, interviews and any admissions tests which may be involved, including the UKCAT. Through this programme we have had incredible success and in two consecutive years offers have been awarded to TAP scholars from the University of Cambridge and Medicine and Dentistry courses at universities such as Kings’ College London.
There are ongoing activities within school for GSI students too – please see the most recent offering below: