Kirkby College joins the nation’s top list

NMAC11-0112-1''Kirkby College Head Teacher Simon Taylor is pictured with Year 7 pupils celebrating their recent GCSE susccess.
NMAC11-0112-1''Kirkby College Head Teacher Simon Taylor is pictured with Year 7 pupils celebrating their recent GCSE susccess.
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A COLLEGE’S bold and ‘risk taking’ overhaul of teaching methods has earned it a place in the top 100 of the UK’s best-performing schools.

Kirkby College has been named among the elite group by the Government for its improvement over the last four years.

The new figures show the number of its pupils gaining five or more A* to C GCSEs including English and maths has gone from 21 per cent in 2007 to 44 in 2010.

Headteacher Simon Taylor said staff were ‘delighted’ with the results after the school made big educational changes.

“We’ve done it by consistently improving our teaching year on year,” he said.

“It’s been achieved through determination and risk taking; we believe what we are doing is right.”

Alterations have included a more individual, tailored, approach to teaching with children set individual learning targets.

“We said ‘let’s do something different’,” added Mr Taylor.

“It is working and the staff are delighted. It gives them credibility for their hard work.”

The figures released by the Department for Education list the top 100 schools according to sustained GCSE performance and improvement in the past four years.

Kirkby College comes in at 85th in the country, winning congratulations from minister for schools Nick Gibb.

Parents also welcomed the seal of approval for the Tennyson Street school.

Huthwaite mum Michelle Forbes moved 16-year-old daughter Tayla there from another school in September.

“She’s gone from predicted grades of ‘Ds’ to ‘Bs’ and they have gone over and above the call of duty for her,” she said.

“They really have turned her life around. The teachers respect the kids and expect the respect back, but work to earn their trust.

The college’s figures also show the number of pupils getting five or more GCSEs of any subject has gone from 21 per cent in 2007 to 44 per cent in 2010.

Added Mr Taylor: “This is great national recognition for a fabulous achievement.

“This year as we work towards our next exam season 54 per cent of our Key Stage Four students already have a GCSE grade C or above in English ‘in the bag’.”

The college, which has 580 pupils on the books, is one of just two schools in Nottinghamshire to make the top 100 improvement table.

The new figures cap a bright start to 2011 for the school, which has also just been awarded the Dyslexia Friendly Schools Quality Mark from Nottinghamshire County Council.