The Sir Robert Woodard Academy is an English secondary school serving students aged 11 to 18. As an 'academy' school, it is funded directly by central government and is independent from local authority control. A mixed gender school, it is sponsored by Woodard Schools, an Anglican education corporation and West Sussex County Council. This article provides a guide to Sir Robert Woodard Academy.
History and location
Sir Robert Woodard (not Woodward) Academy opened in September 2009, replacing Boundstone Community College. Located in the town of Lancing, West Sussex, the school serves the residents of Lancing and nearby Sompting. The school is named in honour of the great-grandson of Woodard founder Nathaniel Woodard, Sir Richard Woodard, a former commander of the Royal Yacht Britannia. Prior to this service, Woodard had also served in a number of other naval roles, including commanding the frigate HMS Amazon. He was appointed to Britannia in 1990, just after a period as Commodore of the River Clyde and retired from naval service in 1995. Specific criteria for admission can be obtained from the school itself as it can be a complex process in cases of more than 240 applications.
Learning and lifestyle
The school makes it its policy to admit 240 students each year with 100 admitted to Year 12 in the Sixth Form. Each year group is known as a Chapter, reflecting the school's Anglican outlook and ethos. The Sixth Form itself is a separate Chapter and aims to foster a collegiate mentality in its students.
It is school policy that students are taught in ability groups with the reasoning given by the school for this being that it "enables effective targeting of needs and includes provision for gifted and talented students and those with learning difficulties."
The school also aims to maintain helpful and informative relationships with parents, holding regular parents' evenings as well as facilitating direct access for parents to details of their child's learning via an internet portal called 'Frog'.
Students are actively encouraged to participate in the wide variety of extra-curricular activities on offer at the end of the formal school day. These include a rock band, choir, dance groups and sports clubs, amongst many others. The performing arts component to education at the school is seen to have a wider significance within the local community.