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Year 11 Update

Year 11 students deserve huge praise and recognition from both school and home for managing an extremely busy pre-public exam (PPE) period with pride and ambition. Behaviour during exams was impeccable with all students realising the seriousness of the exam process and the months ahead in their education.

Recent months and years have been incredibly challenging for us all - home, schools, staff and above all our students included. We are well aware that the rigour of GCSE studies in Year 11 requires strong relationships and trust between us all. Please allow me to take this opportunity to assure you that we continue to take your child’s GCSE studies incredibly seriously. In recent weeks we have felt the year group shift to the point where students are now engaging at the level required for this stage of their education.

The ‘business end’ of your child’s schooling requires more than compliance. We want to see real engagement, a commitment to homework & independent study and meaningful conversations about students’ futures and pathways to college, jobs, apprenticeships and higher education. So, it is fantastic to be able to report that we have received upwards of 160 applications from within the year group to study in the sixth form at Welling School.

For those students that have applied, the Head of Sixth Form, Vicky Humphrey will be in touch to arrange a progression meeting with her or one of her team. We encourage all our students to keep their options open, but similarly we also strongly suggest to students they should have an application in with us at Welling, even as a back-up.

The International Baccalaureate (IB) Programme has been added to the Sixth Form curriculum for next year, 2022-2023. The school has its final accreditation stage at the start of March to be an IB World School. This is targeted at high achieving students in Business Studies, Finance, Maths, Science and IT. We will be running further assemblies on this soon so students are fully briefed on this exciting curriculum option. If you would like to know more do not hesitate to contact the school.


The structure of the PPE exams was in fact more intense than the reality of how the summer 2022 exams will be for the students. During January the students completed about 15-20 exams in a fortnight. However, in the summer these exams will take place in a 6-week period with the half-term week in the middle.

Teaching staff are currently working incredibly hard to mark the thousands of exam scripts that have been completed. Subject leaders then moderate a sample of these papers and apply grade boundaries to ensure our grading is rigorous. Results are then submitted to the school and to TKAT. We will be in a position to report the results of the exams to our students on Thursday 24 February. This will be in the form of an exam-results assembly during the school day. We will also send these reports home so you can view exam grades and your child’s teacher’s ‘professional prediction’ for the final result. Whatever the results at this stage it must be noted that this is not final. All students must develop a ‘growth mind-set’ that does not see intelligence or achievement as fixed. There is still time for students to massively influence their final GCSE set of results.

If your child is in this situation and feels they are in urgent need of that final push, then they will need to act quickly and ensure they do not work in isolation, but engage with subject experts and experienced teaching staff to get the best chance of success. Furthermore, if your child is fortunate enough to be one of our many students already doing well and ‘on track’, we still challenge them to achieve the very best set of results that is possible for them as an individual. When judged nationally, any improvement day-by-day does have an impact on results, the key for your child is to keep pushing to be a little better than yesterday and to build this growth one step forward at a time.

Exam boards have recently released exam dates with the final timetable for all exams about to be published centrally. Our exams officer will share this with you in full, though we are able to confirm that the main exams will take place from Monday 16 May - Friday 24 June. Other assessments will continue to take place in May and June, such as French and Spanish speaking exams and BTEC coursework.

Coursework Completion

It should be noted that if coursework is not completed to the standards expected then students will be required to continue the process of this work into July. Therefore, we urge all our students to get their coursework handed in during March and April at the very latest. We ask for parents and carers support with this in the coming weeks, particularly as high quality coursework can boost a student's set of exam results significantly. We urge students to complete this work to the very best of their ability and not simply to the minimum whilst working to the latest possible deadline.

To support coursework completion the school will be open for Year 11s only during the coming half-term, from Monday 14 - Wednesday 16 February. The focus of this work is the subjects that have not had recent PPE exams - Business Studies, Digital Information (IT), Sports Studies, Music Technology & Performance and Childcare. We will also be inviting our History students in for catch-up as this demanding subject does not have the same curriculum time as core subjects English, Maths and Science.

After half-term, from Monday 21 February, we will continue to deliver our after school ‘Year 11 Masterclass’ programme with half the year group in core subjects and the other half in options subjects on rotation.

Support from Home

Creating an environment at home that can help your child study is extremely important. We are sure you know this, but the challenge as a parent is then knowing how to support learning. Knowing things such as which exam boards your child studies or what websites or resources to use is essential in supporting from home and ensuring that we work together to ensure success.

To support this we will be inviting you to another GCSE-preparation evening. These will take place as soon as current Covid-19 restrictions allow us. You will be invited by tutor group so you are able to ask questions in a smaller, interactive group.

If you have any questions regarding the information in this letter or anything else, do not hesitate to contact me by email:

Yours faithfully,

Dominic Roberts