Headmaster's blog at Newcastle School for Boys
School aims point to the development of character
The following blog is taken from an article published in Northern Insight magazine’s April edition.
A school’s aims are something that should be understood and appreciated by the whole school community: pupils, staff, parents and governors. Independent school inspections judge the extent to which a school is successful in meeting its aims.
At Newcastle School for Boys, our aims are two-fold. Firstly, we seek to challenge and support each boy to maximise his individual academic learning and progress. The second is to produce boys and young men of excellent character.
The first aim is about the distance a boy travels academically in his time with us – the progress he makes. We carefully assess each boy’s starting point and their progress at key points throughout his school career so that we can track and monitor that progress – intervening as and when required to ensure that he continues his journey as successfully as possible.
Our second aim of producing boys and young men of excellent character is expressed in language that some might consider lofty or old-fashioned. Although harder to measure than academic attainment, personal development is something that we do equally successfully.
This process is underpinned by core values that we identify in our school character compass whose points are community, integrity, resilience, courage, leadership and empathy. Each half term has a specific focus on one of these qualities. They are also very much a part of the everyday language and values of daily school life.
We are seeking for our boys to develop the qualities and attributes that will not just help them to acquire so-called ‘soft’ skills for further study or employment, but hopefully qualities that are going to allow them to lead happy and fulfilled lives beyond school.
To achieve our aims, it is important that everybody understands them. It also seems fair that we are judged against the extent to which the School and our boys realise them.