The development of new GCSEs has seen the introduction of the first new grade since 1992. Grade 9 represents a new ‘super grade’ which will be reserved for just the students who achieve within the top 20% of the historic A* grade. 

Ralph Thoresby School is committed to supporting its many exceptional students to achieve the very highest grade possible and 28 Y10 students were treated to a ‘Challenge Camp’ at Leeds City Council’s Herd Farm facility.

 

The three day residential event had two main foci. Firstly, students worked with staff members from across the curriculum-offer on the higher level skills that they will need to develop to secure the very top marks.

Problem-solving and reasoning skills for maths were cultivated in a ‘Lock-in room’ escape challenge, whilst rigorous discussion, analysis and evaluation was the focus for the Philosophy for Children debate organised by Head of RE, Miss. Bell.

 

Mr. Gill was keen to help students focus on logic skills that employers and the top-flight of universities are demanding, particularly where they rely on new technology. Mrs. Gillott encouraged students to develop resilience in investigation as part of her exciting activity on scientific strategies.

The camp also allowed students to improve skills in communication and leadership through a series of physical activities which included crate-stacking and a high rope assault course. Despite initial trepidation, all the students through themselves into the activities which required quick-thinking and high level support.

 

Assistant Headteacher, Stewart McGill, noted, ‘It’s important that we find ways of ensuring the highest level of progress for all of our students. Whilst many students are likely to get a Level 8, it is opportunities like our Challenge Camp that will help to give the impetus to strive for the highest.

 

The students represented Ralph Thoresby School exceptionally well and will be able to put their new skills to good use in both their lessons and upcoming GCSE mock exams. Ultimately, it is the development of confidence, resilience and a love for learning generated by opportunities like this that really help our students to stand out from the crowd.’

Each student has been provided with an 'Options Booklet' to help to inform their choices when selecting the GCSE and vocational courses they will pursue in our extended Key Stage 4. This document can be downloaded below.

This booklet has been designed to help you in continuing conversations with your son/daughter about the important GCSE Options they will soon take.

The booklet is separated into the core curriculum (subjects that all students will take) as well as three sections of subjects over which students will have choice (GCSE Options Subjects, Technology Choices and Vocational Options).

Pathways

Students will be guided into making options that promote their best choice of success. All students are separated into three pathways (EBacc, Core and Foundation) and each Pathways is constructed to offer the students the chance to explore subjects in which they will make outstanding progress.

Parents’ Evening

Students will be provided with information about their Pathway during our parents’ evening on Tuesday 28th March. It is imperative that every family attends the event, which will offer the following:

  • Individual consultations with subject teachers

  • Appointments with our independent careers adviser

  • Subject stands from lessons that students have not previously taken

  • Two information sessions on making GCSE Options.

You will receive an appointment booking form with precise details about Parents' Evening from Miss. Saunders in due course.

 

In the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact me at school or via e-mail (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Click the image below to preview the options booklet.

Ralph Thoresby School is committed to supporting students to achieve outstanding progress. A key part of us being able to support students to make further improvements is the rigorous assessment programme we have. An integral part of this is our formal exam week, which takes place between 13th and 16th March 2017. 

 

This exam week will form significant parts of the conversation on parents’ evening on Tuesday 28th March and will help us to make recommendations for subject choices and pathways that students will take in the GCSE options process. Additionally, it will help to inform some departmental decisions in setting students to commence GCSE studies. 

 

Exam Timetable 

Your child’s exam timetable is printed on the back of this exam. Students will take each exam listed and I should be grateful if you could spend time talking about the importance of each assessment with your child. 

 

Punctuality and Attendance 

It is important that students are very punctual during this week as lateness to the registration of an exams or absence from school will have a significant and negative impact on your child’s outcomes. Please avoid making any non-emergency appointments during this time. 

 

Equipment 

Students are responsible for bringing the following equipment to every exam: 3 black pens, two pencils, a ruler, an eraser, highlighters, a geometry set (protractor and pair of compasses) and a calculator. 

All equipment should be brought in a clear pencil case or polythene bag. 

 

Water 

Students may bring one bottle of still water in a clear bottle without a label. 

 

Revision 

Students should undertake approximately 60 minutes of revision each work day and spend some time at the weekend revising for their exams. Students will be set revision work and it is important that they commit to undertake this revision throughout each stage of the next few weeks. 

 

If you have any questions about these examinations, please don’t hesitate to contact me at school or via e-mail (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Ralph Thoresby School is committed to supporting students to achieve outstanding progress. A key part of us being able to support students to make further improvements is the rigorous assessment programme we have. An integral part of this is our formal exam week, which takes place between 17th and 22nd March 2017. 

 

This will be the first exam week that Y7 students have taken at Ralph Thoresby School and it is designed to give them exposure to the rigour of the new GCSE specifications, which are almost all exclusively examined. However, significant work will be done to support the wellbeing of the students and we would urge them to talk to teachers and their mentors if they have anxieties about their exams. 

 

Exam Timetable 

Your child’s exam timetable is printed on the back of this exam. Students will take each exam listed and I should be grateful if you could spend time talking about the importance of each assessment with your child. 

 

Punctuality and Attendance 

It is important that students are very punctual during this week as lateness to the registration of an exams or absence from school will have a significant and negative impact on your child’s outcomes. Please avoid making any non-emergency appointments during this time. 

 

Equipment 

Students are responsible for bringing the following equipment to every exam: 3 black pens, two pencils, a ruler, an eraser, highlighters, a geometry set (protractor and pair of compasses) and a calculator. 

All equipment should be brought in a clear pencil case or polythene bag. 

 

Water 

Students may bring one bottle of still water in a clear bottle without a label. 

 

Revision 

Students should undertake approximately 60 minutes of revision each work day and spend some time at the weekend revising for their exams. Students will be set revision work and it is important that they commit to undertake this revision throughout each stage of the next few weeks. 

 

If you have any questions about these examinations, please don’t hesitate to contact me at school or via e-mail (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

School leaders from across Europe were treated to a day of Ralph Thoresby learning at a special event organised by Leeds City Council.

 

Headteachers from Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Poland are participating in a two-year programme focused on raising educational attainment in their respective countries.

 

Organisers of the ERASMUS-funded programme approached Ralph Thoresby School after hearing about our successes in developing our young people to achieve outstanding academic outcomes and to go on to the best universities and jobs.

 

The headteachers were given the opportunity to talk to many of our students across the year groups, including both the Head Boy and Head Girl, who talked about the significant positive changes to the school.

 

Our guests explored a great many lessons across the school and saw teaching and learning that is helping our students to make amongst the best progress in the city. The insight they received will help them in reshaping their own curriculum to focus on knowledge, skills, resilience and independence which are central pillars to our own positive story.

 

There was also plenty of time to ask Ralph Thoresby School’s senior leaders about the way we are engaging our community, developing strong partnerships within the Red Kite Alliance and offering an exceptional extra-curricular programme.

 

Assistant Headteacher, Stewart McGill, was delighted to host the guests and added, ‘Developing international partnerships is essential to continuing our work in raising aspirations for every student.

 

‘Sharing an insight into the way we have changed our practices to help our students excel is a real privilege. However, knowing that this will benefit students and young people across the continent makes a day like this one exceptionally special.’

Ralph Thoresby School is committed to ensuring every student benefits from an innovative curriculum that gives every student the opportunity to learn and achieve at the highest standards.

As you may be aware, recent changes to GCSE qualifications means that in the majority of cases there is a substantially increased amount of content and students will be assessed only through examination.

Our systemic review and consultation has led to us making the firm and positive decision to allow students to commence their GCSE studies in Year 9. This enhanced programme of study will enable students to develop the essential skills they need and the broad and deep content knowledge for each of their subjects.

This change means that students entering Year 9 will take ‘Options’ as well as ‘Core subjects’.

GCSE Options Evening/Year 8 Parents’ Evening

Each student will receive essential guidance from both their mentor and subject teachers. However, it is essential that we share with you key information by means of an information evening. As such we have changed the date of our parent/carer consultation evening.

This evening will take place on Wednesday 28th March and parents/carers can make appointments with subject teachers between 16:00-19:00.

Information presentations: It is essential that each family attends one presentation at either 17:00 or 18:00. This will be held in the Theatre.

Year 8 Timeline

It is important to support each family with the planning for this important change to study. Below are key dates to help you and your child in making these important decisions.

Tuesday 28th February-Assembly to students

Wednesday 29th February-‘Options Booklet’ posted to families

Monday 13th-Thursday 16th March-Year 8 Examinations

Tuesday 28th March-Year 8 progress reports to be distributed to students

Tuesday 28th March- Year 8 Parent/Carer Consultation evening and GCSE Options Evening

Monday 17th-Thursday 20th March (16:00-17:30)-Nightly drop-in sessions to support students in making course choices

Friday 21st April-Deadline for Options Choices

Monday 3rd July-Start of GCSE Studies

It is without doubt that these decisions will be amongst the most important that your child will make throughout their time at secondary school. Whilst there will be significant support for both students and families, it will be our pleasure to take any questions in the immediacy at school or via e-mail (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

 

Each Day, The NSPCC ask schools to support them in fundraising to provide vital funds to run their telephone counselling service and other projects which enable thousands of young people to receive the support they need each week.

Number Day is an exciting opportunity to come together and celebrate everything numerical.

The Maths department will be running events throughout the week.

 

Wednesday 1st February

There will be a bake sale during breaktime, with cakes costing between 50p and £1.

 

Friday 3rd February

Students will be given the opportunity to enjoy a non-uniform day. We are asking every student and staff member to wear a number and a voluntary donation of £1 is requested.

There will be a multitude of number competitions in the sports hall at breaktime.

Every lesson will celebrate maths with some number work related to that particular subject.

Other games and contests will be run throughout the day.

Outstanding Y10 student, Somaya Hajyousef, has been recognised by the prestigious Rotary Club of Leeds for her efforts in improving cohesion across Ralph Thoresby School.

Somaya and fifteen other young people from across the city were celebrated at a glittering award ceremony at Leeds Town Hall on Monday 16th January.

Organised by the Rotary Club and the Lord Mayor’s office, guests at the event heard how young people are transforming our city with innovative programmes.

Somaya’s own story was particularly impressive after she spearheaded the Anti-Bullying Campaign at school. She has helped to form, train and develop of committed Y10 students to support students across the year groups. Somaya has spoken at assemblies and to staff about ways of embracing the programme, which has helped to prevent bullying in our diverse and vibrant school.

Somaya was recommended for the award by her Head of Year, Jamie Francis, who commented on her commitment to supporting others.

Assistant Headteacher, Stewart McGill, added ‘Whilst it would have been possible to select any number of our outstanding young people, Somaya’s tenacity and dedication has helped Ralph Thoresby to launch an innovative programme that is well-respected across the city. Somaya will undoubtedly continue to have a positive impact on our school and on the lives of her peers.

Ralph Thoresby School is once again delighted to offer students in Year 8 the opportunity to experience the excitement of visiting the vibrant Germany city of Cologne.

 

For many students, the opportunity to bring their language speaking to life in the ‘real world’ gives them the confidence to excel in languages upon their return.

 

The trip, which takes place between 12th-16th June provides the perfect balance of cultural and fun visits.

 

Students will learn more about Germany’s impressive chocolate industry at the Lindt factory before putting their sporting skills to good use at the Olympic Museum. We will visit the imposing Cologne Cathedral before shopping and enjoying tasty local delicacies.

 

Students will also learn about local town life in a visit to Boppard, where they will enjoy impressive views from a river cruise as well as taking part in a city tour aboard the local land train.

 

There will be plenty of fun to be had at PhantasiaLand, Germany’s most successful theme park and evenings will be full of entertainment with a sports night, a bowling evening, a disco party and a quiz night.

 

Students will travel by executive coach and ferry before staying in the impressive Koeln-Riehl Youth Hostel in single-sex en suite rooms. Food will be varied and served on a full board basis.

 

The total cost of the visit is £420.

 

More information can be found in the letter which can be downloaded (below) and students are asked to return the E1, passport information as well as a deposit of £120 (cash or cheque made payable to ‘Ralph Thoresby School’) by Friday 3rd February. All payments should be taken to Ms. Saunders.

 

More information about the trip, including additional financial support, can be obtained from Mr McGill at school or via email (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Whilst many people dream of a life on the stage, 150 students from Ralph Thoresby School learned what it takes to succeed with the country’s most prestigious theatre school, RADA.

Speaking at a special presentation facilitated by Robert Peston’s ‘Speakers for Schools’ charity, RADA’s director Edward Kemp shared his views on the possibility of growth at the heart of the world-famous Acting and Technical Theatre school.

RADA has helped to produce a galaxy of stars ranging from Richard Attenborough to Gemma Arterton and from Mark Addy to Sean Bean. Students at Ralph Thoresby School learned that their own commitment and hard work can yield similar impressive outcomes to the alumni of Gower Street’s most famous college.

In the year that Ralph Thoresby School students achieved their best ever GCSE and A Level results, staff have worked tirelessly to help every student aspire to excel in the community into which they graduate. Guaranteed work experience, partnerships with the world’s most successful universities and phenomenal extra-curricular opportunities are helping every young person secure a future that stretches, challenges and rewards.

Mr Kemp spoke passionately about the scope to transform oneself beyond natural abilities and to embrace a world in which they have no previous experience. Students made powerful connections between Ralph Thoresby School’s ethos of ‘Ambition and Achievement for All’ and the philosophy of success which has been laid as a cornerstone of RADA since it was founded in 1904.

Headteacher, Will Carr, was delighted that students could learn from Edward’s significant experience at the cutting edge of performing arts. He added, ‘It’s wonderful for Ralph Thoresby students to hear someone of such gravitas speaking in our theatre! There’s a powerful message there that you can go on from Ralph Thoresby to achieve great things. Fantastic that Edward was able to be with us today’.

 

Throughout their first term at Ralph Thoresby School students in year 7 took part in our extended learning project. There were 12 tasks that required students to design, build, and promote an imaginary theme park.


The quality of the work produced was fantastic. Many amazing models and creations were delivered to school ready for judging. Some fantastic portfolios that had a range of tasks inside gave the judges a hard time in selecting the winners.


The winners were:
Alfie Needham
Rebecca Harrison
Oliver Hargrove
Alex Tyler
Jack Bougton-Sherwin

Huge congratulations to these students. Our winners will receive an all expenses paid pass to the end of year rewards day trip in summer 2017.

15th– 17 October 2017

We are delighted to offer all of our KS4 and KS5 History students a fantastic opportunity to visit the City of Berlin, where many key historical events of the 20th Century have been played out. 

 

Between 15 – 17 October 2017, students will have the opportunity to experience everything that Historic Berlin has to offer. From Checkpoint Charlie, to the Stasi Prison and The Reichstag, this trip is a unique opportunity to emerge yourself in some of the most dramatic settings that 20th Century history has to offer. 

 

Trip Organiser, Rachel Liptrott, comments, ‘I am really looking forward to sharing some hands on history with our pupils, this is fantastic opportunity to experience the harsh realities of the communist Germany and develop understanding of some of the most remarkable events of the modern word. Unforgettable memories will be made and I am confident that students will develop a lifelong love of learning.’ 

 

The launch event for this trip took place on Wednesday 7th December. Students have been asked to complete an E1 form and passport information sheet and return it with a non-refundable deposit of £50 by Friday 7 January 2017. 

 

Please download the information sheets or contact Rachel Liptrott at school or via e-mail (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) for additional clarification.

Attachments:
Download this file (E1 Form.doc)E1 Form.doc[ ]107 kB
Download this file (REL-Initial Letter.docx)REL-Initial Letter.docx[ ]164 kB

There were jubilant scenes in Leeds’ Merrion Centre on Saturday 6th of December as two RTS teams in the business enterprise programme, LEAP, went head to head with 30 other teams with astounding results.

 

Qualitees and Aurum Jewellery put candidates in ‘The Apprentice’ to shame as they enticed the crowds with their vibrant selection of hipster fashion and gift-wrapped luxury accessories.

 

Although it is only Ralph Thoresby’s second foray into the city-wide programme, students were able to compete well with students from GSAL, Woodhouse Grove, St Aidan’s Harrogate and Allerton High to prove they have what it takes to succeed in the tough corporate world. Both teams received plaudits from the judges who commended them for their ability to interact with the crowds and create powerful and purposeful marketing programmes.

 

Qualitees, led by Beth Bracewell, reigned victorious on the day after achieving one of the highest scores in the competition’s history. The Lord Mayor was pleased to present them a special reward, which came courtesy of the Merrion Centre.

 

The competition runs until April and both teams will have another chance to sell to the public at a Valentine’s trade fair in February. Additionally, they will be busy supplying the massive demand for their products at various school events. Both teams will continue to be mentored by Associate Director of Land Securities, Helen Green.

 

LEAP’s in-school co-ordinator, Stewart McGill, commented, ‘The students from both teams have shown they have got real entrepreneurial spirit and it is without doubt that this sort of scheme helps students to stand out from the masses in both UCAS and job applications.

 

‘Ralph Thoresby’s mix of enterprise initiatives stand out across the city as giving our learners the opportunities they deserve to put into practice the skills they have developed in school.’

The cast and crew of 'Ghost' had a great (if a little chilly!) time fundraising for the production. Activities involved a delicious bake sale, guess how many sweets in the jar and the obligatory sponge the teacher / sixth former! We managed to raise a fair amount, and still have a further fundraising event on the 14th December at 7pm in which some of our talented students will be showcasing their talents in the Drama Studio. Tickets are priced at £1 (available on the door). A large chunk of our proceeds will also be donated to local festive charities. 
 
 
 
In other news, tickets for 'Ghost' are now on sale! Based on the award winning film, the musical tells the tale of Sam Wheat, who, in a set up by his supposed best friend, is killed in the streets of New York and has to journey 'between worlds' to see justice done and to protect the love of his life, Molly. Tickets are £6 adults, £4 concessions and are available from school reception. 

 

Talented Y10 student Ollie Brown brought Christmas cheer to scores of residents at the annual festive lights switch-on.

 

Following his success at this year’s award-winning school production of ’13 The Musical’ and his regular involvement as a chorister at Leeds Minster, Ollie was a natural choice for event organisers who were eager to give over a thousand guests reason to celebrate.

 

Despite having less than 24 hours to prepare, Ollie wowed he crowds with a splendid performance comprising Greenday’s ‘Time of Your Life’. However, it was his tribute to David Bowie and a pitch-perfect performance of ‘Space Oddity’ that really drew attention.

 

Flanked by the Lord Mayor and other members of the council, Ollie was able to enjoy the official switch-on. Following the performances, a major firework display lit up the night sky.

 

The council-organised event was this year compered by presenters from Radio Aire and also saw special appearances from Ronnie the Rhino and a local Brownie Guide group who sang a selection of Christmas songs.

 

One person described it as ‘The best ever Christmas lights night in Crossgates’, which is easy to understand given the outstanding Ralph Thoresby talent on show!

GCSEs in England are being reformed and will be graded with a new scale from 9 to 1, with 9 being the highest grade. English literature, English language and maths will be the first subjects to be graded in this way from August 2017. The subjects with the highest numbers of candidates (e.g. arts, humanities, languages) will follow in 2018 and most others in 2019. This is happening as GCSEs are being reformed to make them more challenging, to keep pace with employers’ and universities demands.

In the first year each new GCSE subject is introduced, students who would have got a grade C or better will get a grade 4 or better. Students who would have got a Grade A or better will get a 7 or better in the first year. Grade 9 will be more difficult to achieve than a grade A*. The extra top grade will also make it easier for employers and universities to distinguish between the most able students

To see how the numbered grades compare to the current A* to G system, click here or Google "ofqual 9 to 1 postcard". More information about when subjects will switch to the new grades is available on the Ofqual website here.

Our culture of 'Ambition and achievement for all' has been celebrated at a recent event for 96 specially chosen students from across Y7-Y11.

Ralph Thoresby School is delighted to have partnered with York University to enable dozens of young people to engage with their innovative university programme, Shine.

Shine has been created to help young people to learn about the huge range of opportunities that lay ahead of them.

Students will continue to participate in the programme over their remaining time at school and will visit the university at least once a year. Every year, there is a special competition to widen their understanding of university. What's more, Y10 participants will head over to the university to take part in a three day 'Easter Residential', where they will live as students.

This is just one of the many opportunities open to students at RTS. This year, more than 50 Sixth Form students have taken part in award-winning university programmes, including one current Y13 who spent time learning about the American system at Yale University.

Assistant Headteacher, Stewart McGill, has added, 'We are honoured to be taking part in the programme, which will offer so many opportunities to our young people. Learning about university life will help each participant to make a reasoned decision about whether HE is for them.'

Attachments:
Download this file (Parents Information Session.pptx)Parents Information Session.pptx[ ]13391 kB
 
Thursday 13th October saw the official launch of work experience to Y10 and Y12 students and their families.
 
Work experience for all students in these two years has been introduced to our calendar and reflects our ethos of 'Ambition and Achievement for All'.
 
Y10 students will take part in the week-long scheme between 26th-30th June 2017.
Y12 students will develop their skills between 3rd-7th July 2017.
 
All students will have exceptional access to support from the careers team and their mentors. The attached PowerPoint is designed to help you in supporting with the process.
 
The return of OP1 forms should take place on or before the deadline of 4th January 2017.
 
Additional information can be obtained from Stewart McGill at school or via e-mail (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).