Partnership of staff and pupils between Brighton College and the LAE
Brighton College supports the London Academy of Excellence in a variety of ways. Brighton teaching staff visit the LAE to teach, mentor and support academic departments and help to facilitate co-curricular activities such as the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme through the year. From September 2019, a Brighton College teacher works 0.8FTE at the LAE, both teaching and overseeing partnership activities and events between the two schools. Staff training between the two schools also allows staff from both to visit each other and spend INSET days together. Members of the Senior Management Team and governing body at Brighton College are on the governing body of the LAE. Each year, year 12 pupils in each school are given a buddy in the other school, and each pupil visits the other school to sit in lessons and share ideas. Pupils from the LAE also come to Brighton College for a UCAS and careers day in the summer term to prepare for life after A levels.
The partnership came about through a discussion between Richard Cairns, Head Master of Brighton College, and Joan Deslandes, Head of Kingsford School in Newham. Brighton had offered 6th form scholarships to 2/3 Kingsford pupils for some years, because they had no viable Sixth form option in their borough. Richard and Joan both felt that the opportunity to study for university should be extended to more pupils, and gained the support of other independent schools around London and HSBC bank to sponsor the London Academy of Excellence.This opened in 2011, and now prepares 200 year 12 and 200 year 13 pupils for university and beyond. It was voted Sixth Form College of the Year in 2015 - 16.
Brighton College provides £120, 000 per annum (which bridges the gap between government support for 80 pupils and the actual cost of their LAE education) in addition to support by means of teaching staff every year. From September 2019, one teacher (0.8 FTE) from Brighton College is based at the LAE: both teaching and overseeing partnership activities and events between the two schools. In previous years there have been secondments, with Brighton teachers spending part of their teaching time at LAE. The College's development team is proactive in supporting the fundraising efforts of LAE and manages much of its donor communications programme. In summer 2019, Brighton College ran a fundraising appeal within its parent and alumni community, which raised over £220, 000 for the Academy.
Since the first cohort of LAE students received their A-Level results in 2014, outcomes have improved year on year. In 2019, 65% of grades achieved were A*/A, 93% A-B and 99% A-C. In the Times A-Level league table published the day after results day, LAE placed 17th overall, making it the highest-performing mainstream state sixth form provider for the fourth year running and one of the UK’s top 5 state schools.
These impressive results have enabled record numbers of students to take up places on competitive courses at top universities. Before the LAE was founded only 330 Sixth Formers from the whole of Newham took A-levels and fewer than 40 progressed to Russell Group universities from Newham providers. Only three progressed to Oxford or Cambridge from Newham providers. Since 2014, the LAE has sent more than 850 pupils to Russell Group universities, 97 to study medicine, dentistry or veterinary science and 67 to Oxford or Cambridge.
In recognition of these achievements, LAE was voted Sixth Form College of the Year in 2015 – 16 and in its most recent OFSTED inspection (Oct 2017) LAE was rated outstanding in all categories and overall.
Each year, year 12 pupils in each school are given a buddy in the other school, and each pupil visits the other school to sit in lessons and share ideas. Pupils from the LAE also come to Brighton College for a UCAS and careers day in the summer term to prepare for life after A levels. There are also joint events in the co-curricular area, such as dance, drama, lectures and workshops.
The events and activities mentioned above are ongoing and take place on an annual basis.