A really interesting thought. I particularly like the concept that it is not just about the exam, as well as the use of experts to deliver content in their area of speciality. This is something I have considered doing myself, but making the contacts can be difficult at times.
This is a quick and light-hearted post on what characteristics one might expect to find in a school that takes its academic credentials seriously. These signs are not supposed to be individually necessary or collectively sufficient, but I hope they do give a flavour of what I mean when I talk about a school being ‘academic’.
(1) Pupils read more than the standard Key Stage 3 textbooks in lessons.
My history focus will shine through in these comments, but this probably applies more generally. What are the pupils in your school reading in lessons? Is it a common textbook that is light on prose and heavy on fun activities? Or do teachers in your school frequently get pupils reading more serious books? Have they read some Attenborough in their geography or biology lessons? But here’s the acid test: go to a PSHE lesson and look at what pupils are reading there.
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