On 15th October 2019, UTC Reading, the only Ofsted ‘outstanding’ UTC (University Technical College) in the country, renowned for its innovative approach to learning, and World Class accredited since 2017, hosted this year’s WCSQM Assessment Centre. It was the final assessment stage for the 2019 cohort of schools applying to achieve World Class Schools Quality Mark accreditation.
The award’s uniqueness lies in the fact that the students are assessed with regard to whether they are World Class or not, rather than the school itself. The premise is that if the school is truly World Class, then its students should be able to demonstrate this in whatever context they find themselves.
WCSQM has been accrediting Ofsted ‘outstanding’ secondary schools in the UK since 2014 using a framework of skills and competencies young people need to flourish in an emerging global economy. 2019 sees the biggest cohort of applicant schools at one time to date, with 19 secondary schools and 8 primary schools (all non-selective state schools), shortlisted for accreditation.
This year students from 25 schools got through to the Assessment Centre, and were given the challenge of working in teams to design a ‘Classroom for the future’ for UTC Reading, a modern, innovative, ‘future proof’ and environmentally sustainable learning space. Working in teams of primary and secondary students combined, students were required to carry out pre-event planning, research and design work, laying the groundwork for the assessment day, during which they would be meeting with consultants to seek expert help before creating designs, brochures, films, and a 3D model of the space. At the end of the day each team presented their designs to a panel of industry experts, sourced by UTC Reading, who helped to assess whether students had the World Class skills and competencies to secure their school WCSQM accreditation.
The Assessment Centre is the fourth stage of the rigorous application process schools follow in order to gain the coveted title of World Class. Initially, the school is recommended by another World Class school or leading educational organisation, and the school’s achievement data is assessed to shortlist. At the third stage the World Class students carry out an audit to identify what it is about their school that has made them World Class. The audit involves the creation of a video, ‘A week in the life of Bluecoat Wollaton Academyl’ demonstrating how the school is World Class on a day to day basis.
“It was incredible to see how positively students from Year 6 right through to Year 13 worked together to achieve their goal. We were tremendously impressed with the high standard of work produced by the students on the day – you can absolutely see why they were nominated by their school as being World Class .” Miranda Perry, Director of WCSQM.
Successful schools will be announced and celebrated at the WCSQM Awards Ceremony, hosted by Cambridge University at Lady Mitchell Hall, on Friday 13th December 2019, officiated by Dr Phil Knox, university lecturer in Medieval Literature, at the Faculty of English, Cambridge University.
Media contact: Miranda Perry, Director: WCSQM
World Class Schools Quality Mark is a UK charity that awards a quality mark to non-selective state schools that offer the best education to young people in the UK. Unlike other national assessment bodies, we assess the student and not the school, against a framework of skills and competencies young people need to flourish in an emerging global economy. Through unique real-life work experiences, access to a lifelong peer support network and cultural opportunities that take them beyond their local community, we give world class students the confidence to overcome socio-economic barriers to recognise and achieve their potential.
The 25 schools that got through to the Assessment Centre in 2019 include:
|Bluecoat Wollaton Academy||Sedgefield Community College|
|Harris Academy Beckenham||St Aloysius Catholic Federation|
|Harris Academy Morden||St Anthony’s Academy|
|Harris Primary Academy Coleraine Park||St Cuthbert’s Catholic High School|
|Hillcrest Academy||St Thomas More Catholic School|
|Hitchin Girls’ School||St Wilfrids RC College|
|Hugh Myddelton Primary School||The Bishop of Llandaff CiW High School|
|Humberston Academy||The Hertfordshire & Essex High School|
|Liscard Primary School||Thomas Mills High School|
|Moor End Academy||Trinity Academy Halifax|
|Morley Newlands Academy||Waldegrave School|
|Roundhay School||Winton Primary School|