We are a thriving, vibrant and progressive school with Technology specialism status which includes Maths and Science. The school is situated in the Old Town area of Stevenage and has an intake number of 196 with places in great demand as we are the highest performing non selective secondary school at GCSE with 57% of our pupils achieving 5A* to C grades. We have a large successful Sixth Form whose base is in our separate Sixth Form Centre. The school collaborates with 4 other schools across Stevenage creating 'Stevenage Sixth' the largest school based sixth form consortium in Stevenage offering a wide range of options to students.
Our catchment, a number of wards surrounding the Old Town area, provides a wide range of students, both in terms of ability and in terms of their socio-economic backgrounds.
Additionally, we have a small but significant number of students who live in surrounding villages and rely on public transport to reach school. The number of students with learning difficulties, from ethnic minority groups and for whom English is not their first language are all below national averages.
The Barclay School was the first purpose-built secondary school constructed anywhere in the country after the Second World War. It is a Grade II listed building and has some beautiful architectural features in the lobby areas, hall and staircases. The school sits comfortably in a large expanse of grounds with open playing fields bordered by an avenue of trees on one side and is hidden from view on the other by the houses in Walkern and Fresson Road.
Although the original building dates back to 1949 a number of other accommodation areas have been built since then. The sixth form block was added during the 1970s, a purpose built music block was built in the 1990s, and a state of the art technology block was constructed in two phases, in 2001-02 and in 2003-04. In addition we have the usual mobile block! We were successful some few years ago in a large capital bid for the refurbishment of our suite of ten science laboratories.
The laying of the All Weather Pitch in 2011 has transformed the teaching of PE in the winter (and the summer!) months of the year and can be used for a range of sports. From February 2014 we will have completed the installation of night lighting with a grant form Sport England and match funding from the school, Fairlands Youth Football Club and MBDA Sports and Social club.
During summer 2012, the complete ICT infrastructure of the site was replaced with a new virtualised system installation with wireless access across the campus. This provides students and staff with the ability to access visual and written course materials at home which will help students develop their independent learning skills and support their homework. In addition a new Virtual Learning Environment, FROG will provide easy access to homework, video clips and more to support learning.
In November 2013 running through to the Summer of 2014, we start a major refurbishment programme of the roof, windows and water mains funded by Hertfordshire County Council. The building has been in need of this investment for a long time and we look forward to both the improvement in appearance and the comfort in the classroom accommodation.
A feature of the school is a large bronze sculpture, ‘The Family Group’ by Hertfordshire based sculptor and artist Henry Moore. At the end of the war, the local authority was keen to place artwork in its schools and, following negotiations with the artist, the bronze was placed at the school’s main entrance. This work is symbolic of our Barclay community, a school where families are welcomed and values of care, courtesy and confidence are embedded, where relationships, trust and mutual respect shape our daily life.
We have confidence in our ability to make the Visions and Values the school has worked on together this year, ‘Believe! Achieve! Exceed!’ a reality, not just a form of words. We hope that you will be inspired by our vision and want to join us.