Parkhall College P R O S P E C T U S

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1 Parkhall College P R O S P E C T U S

2 Welcome to Parkhall College OUR MISSION STATEMENT To provide a caring, learning environment Thank you for your interest in Parkhall College. I trust you will find our Prospectus helpful as an introduction to life in our school. As a caring, learning institution we aim to provide an inclusive, child-centred environment in which all students achieve their full potential. Our college is rightly proud of its long standing reputation of academic achievement and extracurricular opportunities and we regard the education of our pupils as a partnership between the young people, their parents, the school and the local community. Each year the school attracts pupils from a diverse range of feeder Primary Schools and from all religions and ethnic backgrounds. The school is currently seeking conditional approval from the Department of Education in transforming to Controlled Integrated status and a Development Proposal to introduce Post-16 Education is also under Ministerial consideration. The school currently functions on a split site arrangement with detailed plans drawn up to provide a full schedule of accommodation creating high class, modern teaching and learning facilities. Construction work is expected to begin in March I hope that you feel very welcome as you visit our school and can sense the strong relationships that permeate throughout the entire school community. Please do pay us a visit and find out more about the school than this Prospectus can tell you. You will be very welcome at any time. Mr. G. Beattie - Principal where each person feels valued and respected Parkhall College I Page 1

3 Parkhall College is a well established and successful school for year olds, with a current enrolment of 708. Our school ethos is based on Christian values and standards. We value each person in our school community regardless of colour, religion, creed or cultural background and believe that all can benefit from, and make a positive contribution to, the life of our school. There are currently pupils from 11 different religious denominations attending the school and pupils with 12 different home languages, apart from English. These include Polish, Arabic, Hindi, Cantonese, Slovakian and Indian, amongst others. Each year the school attracts pupils from a wide range of feeder Primary schools. The current year 8 intake derives from 17 different Primary schools from the greater Antrim area. In Parkhall... Teacher expectations are high and all pupils are challenged to achieve their personal best The growth of moral, spiritual, cultural and aesthetic awareness is encouraged so that all our students may become responsible and tolerant citizens Pupils are taught to have respect for the environment The personal, social and physical skills necessary to cope with everyday life, both now and in the future are developed. The school and its members are an integral part of the local community. Page 2 I Parkhall College Parkhall College I Page 3

4 Positive Behaviour Effective learning can only take place when attitudes and behaviour are positive. Our Behaviour Policy is based on the simple requirements of courtesy and mutual respect which contribute to the development and maintenance of good behaviour and a positive ethos. The code of conduct is on display in all classrooms and is reinforced by teachers in class and through assemblies. Rewards Rewards are very important and carry considerable importance in Parkhall. In this way, pupils will achieve recognition for a positive contribution to school life. Such contributions include quality classwork, effort, good behaviour, high levels of attendance and adherence to Code of Conduct. Rewards are informal through teacher s praise and display of good work and more formal, such as merit stickers, pens, certificates, attendance tokens, presentations in assembly and special trips. Pupils are encouraged to develop a sense of responsibility through opportunities to become a Class Monitor, Pupil Librarian, Mentor, Member of School Council or Prefect. Page 4 I Parkhall College Parkhall College I Page 5

5 Pastoral Care In Parkhall College, we believe that children learn best in an environment where they feel happy, secure and valued. We therefore place much emphasis on our Pastoral Care Programme which fosters positive relationships and community spirit. We strive to ensure every child has opportunities to achieve success, not only in academic or vocational study, but also in the wider life of our school. We promote healthy lifestyles and positive attitudes in all of our pupils as well as fostering an environment where diversity is valued and where the worth and self-esteem of all individuals within the school is paramount. Counselling Parkhall has two experienced counsellors, Mr Campbell in the Junior School and Mrs Davidson Brown in the Senior Campus. They are available along with Year Heads to talk with individual pupils who may need help and support in overcoming whatever difficulties they are facing. Pastoral staff work closely with parents to help pupils with any academic,emotional or behavioural concerns, and a wide range of outside agencies are also accessed when deemed necessary. The NEELB has provided a Contact Youth counsellor for all schools in the board area. Pupils can self refer to Parkhall s Counsellor or referrals can be made by Pastoral Staff. Attendance As partners in the education process we expect parents to actively support the school in maintaining the caring discipline and high standards of learning we all wish to achieve. One of the most important elements of a successful education is regular attendance at school. We work closely with the Educational Welfare Service and parents to ensure high standards of attendance and punctuality. Year Heads make regular contact with parents where attendance is an issue Individual Pupil Support Some pupils may require a greater focus on the core skills and the timetable organisation allows for this. Those with specific learning difficulties are provided with opportunities for individual tuition from staff with specialist skills and commitment. Close contact with parents is maintained and Learning Support Assistants give help and guidance in class. Educational Psychology and Literacy Teaching and Support Services are utilised where their support is considered beneficial. Page 6 I Parkhall College Parkhall College I Page 7

6 Key Stage 3 Curriculum Parkhall College, through The Northern Ireland Curriculum, aims to empower our pupils to achieve their potential and to make informed and responsible decisions throughout their lives by developing the young person as an individual, a Personal understanding Mutual understanding Personal health Moral character Spiritual awareness Citizenship contributor to: society, the economy & environment. Our pupils will be prepared for Learning for Life and Work through the key elements of: Cultural understanding Media awareness Ethical awareness Employability Economic awareness Education for sustainable development The KS3 curriculum infuses the cross curricular skills of Communication, Using Mathematics and Using ICT. These cross curricular skills are The Arts English with Media Environment and Society Mathematics acquired and developed across the Areas of Learning: Modern Languages Physical Education Science and Technology Religious Education Page 8 I Parkhall College Parkhall College I Page 9

7 Curriculum Enrichment

8 Key Stage 4 Curriculum At Key Stage 4 pupils make subject choices appropriate to their needs, abilities and interests. Decisions are made after consultation with Careers Teachers, Subject Teachers and Parents. Links have been established with the Northern Regional College enabling some pupils to follow vocational courses, externally validated through the CCEA Occupational studies Award. Pupils can choose from Hair and Beauty, Catering, Vehicle Studies and Construction (Brickwork and Joinery). Also in collaboration with the NRC and other schools in our Learning Community some pupils are able to enrol in Horticulture and Horse Care vocational courses, externally validated through Edexcel BTEC qualifications. Our curriculum is enhanced through enrichment initiatives and an array of extra curricular activities. The curriculum is regularly reviewed to meet changing needs and statutory demands. Careers Careers Education is an essential element in our curriculum and all pupils have a weekly Careers period; Years 8-10 Employability, Years 11 and 12 Careers. Trips out of school and visiting speakers are regularly organised to enhance the work of the Careers Department. Pupils have opportunities to develop their self-awareness and recognise the skills and personal qualities required by employers. Year 11 pupils participate in a period of work Experience designed to help them experience at first hand the challenges, demands and rewards of employment. Pupils taking Occupational Studies spend one day a week in a Work placement in year 12. A Careers Officer from the Training and Employment Agency is assigned to the school to support the work of the Careers staff. Choices Examinations All pupils are encouraged to sit external examinations which cater for the full ability range. In addition to the GCSE courses there are opportunities to sit the RSA Examinations in Initial Text Processing, CLAIT modules, The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music and Trinity College, London, GOML tests in Modern Languages and CCEA Entry Level Courses. Subjects which are presently offered at GCSE Level are: Art and Design Business and Communication Systems Business Studies Construction Drama English English Literature French Geography History Home Economics (Child Development) Home Economics (Food) Information and Communication Technology Learning for Life and Work Mathematics Motor Vehicle and Road User Studies Music Religious Education Single Award and Double Award Science Technology and Design Physical Education Page 12 I Parkhall College Parkhall College I Page 13

9 Induction Parent / Teacher Association In Parkhall we have always been sensitive to this stage in our pupils lives and put a great deal of thought into the planning and effecting of the Induction period. In the summer term, members of staff visit feeder schools in the area and talk to the primary teachers about the Year 7 children who will shortly be moving up to Parkhall. An Induction evening allows parents and pupils to meet with the Principal, Senior Staff and Year Heads. An induction morning and evening in June creates an opportunity for Year 7s and their parents to learn which Class they will be in, learn who else is in the group, and who their new Class Teacher and Year Head will be. During the morning pupils take part in ice breaking and activity sessions During the first month Workshops are organised when visiting organisations, such as Childline, deliver sessions which deal with issues such as listening skills and resolving conflict. The Parent Teacher Association plays an important role in the life of the school. It would be our view that it exists just as much to provide a social base for parents and staff, as to raise money. The depth of commitment of past, as well as present parents in our PTA, is to be welcomed and encouraged. In addition parents are involved in school functions and join in school based activities after hours. This participation should deepen parental awareness and understanding of the ethos of the school. Parkhall Parents We value highly the close links that develop between parents and teachers and encourage and welcome ongoing contact. We believe that when pupils, parents and school support each other positive relationships develop and reach their full potential. Bi-annual Reports highlighting effort, attainment levels and behaviour are sent to parents. Parent Consultation Sessions are held throughout the year to provide opportunities for parents to talk with individual teachers and discuss their child s progress. A special information evening for Year 8 Parents, before the children join us, has proved to be helpful in making the Induction process as easy as possible. We expect parents to support the school in implementing our Behaviour Policy, issued to each parent annually. Charities The caring ethos of our school is clearly demonstrated by the positive response made by our pupils during our Charity Appeals. Even though there are many demands on their resources, pupils regularly contribute to a variety of relevant charities. We regularly welcome representatives to Assembly to raise awareness and develop a deeper understanding of the charities we support. Although we actively encourage pupils to participate in high profile events we equally welcome the weekly contributions made by both pupils and teachers. Page 14 I Parkhall College Parkhall College I Page 15

10 Extra Curricular Activities Many aspects of school life such as Residentials, Clubs, Societies and Youth Club membership contribute further to our pupils personal growth. Participation in the above assists in the overall development of our young people. Pupils can choose from a vast array of activities to suit their individual interests and skills. There are Educational visits to U.K, Europe and USA as well as to many places of interest in our own province and locality. Parkhall pupils have many opportunities to participate in musical and dramatic activities. Individual instrumental tuition is available through the NEELB Peripatetic staff. Parkhall has a fine tradition of sporting success in an array of different sports for both boys and girls. Page 16 I Parkhall College Parkhall College I Page 17

11 Youth and the Community The Youth Club at present runs five nights each week. A large number of activities is available to the members. As well as this, we have special interest sections in craftwork, drama, and photography. Discussion groups are also part of the programme. Recent additions to our provision include a Coffee Bar and a Computer Suite. Other activities available to members include Outdoor Pursuits, senior member training, social weekends, residentials, visits to other clubs and an opportunity to become involved in a range of projects which highlight the issues most important to young people today. Members are also encouraged to involve themselves as far as possible in the running of the Club. In the evenings both schools are extensively used by community groups and external agencies. Currently the activities available include Salsa Dancing, Seasonal Cookery, Indoor Bowls, Photography and Football. Page 18 I Parkhall College Parkhall College I Page 19

12 Proposed New School Building Challenged, happy and equipped for life. Artist s impression of proposed new school Completely new school built on open area. Programmed to open September Purpose built facilities for the whole curriculum. First class recreational facilities with synthetic pitch. State of the art dining facilities. Youth wing and community facilities. Clear entrance and presence to Steeple Road. Safe routes for pedestrians and vehicles. Antrim Learning Community Parkhall College forms part of the Antrim Learning Community which provides access to an enhanced range of subject choices at 14+ as well as planned access to 16+ Courses at Parkhall. The Learning Community also allows us to forge closer links with Antrim Grammar School, Crumlin Integrated School, St Benedict s and the Northern Regional College. This, in turn, helps us to provide a wide range of joint Curricular, Community and Sport based activities and experiences. Page 20 I Parkhall College

13 10550 IED Design & Marketing. Tel: (028) PARKHALL COLLEGE JUNIOR SCHOOL Steeple Road, Antrim, County Antrim, BT411AF T. (028) F. (028) SENIOR SCHOOL Birch Hill Road, Antrim, County Antrim, BT412QH T. (028) F. (028) E.

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