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The Bourne Academy

In 2008 Canford was approached to sponsor a local 'failing school' which it agreed to do as long as the school was nearby, so that there could be regular contact between the two schools. A new principal was appointed; a Vision written; a House system was introduced; and the Specialisms became engineering and English. Since opening as an academy numbers and results have improved significantly.

Canford continues to remain the only sponsor, providing the majority of the governors; but a separate, mutually beneficial relationship between the two schools has continued to grow.  Only 7 Independent Schools in the UK fully sponsor an Academy.

The Bourne Academy opened in 2010, it is projected 1012 students in 2019.   It is an Engineering & Design and English specialist centre.  42% of all grades A*-B across all subjects, 100% of all A Level/BTEC grades A*-E – summer 2018. Since opening, 100% of Year 13 students either secured their first choice at University, an Apprenticeship or entered the job market with training attached.  

The Bourne Academy was chosen as a beacon of success for DofE – in 2018/19, students from Bronze to Gold awards spent 351 hours learning a skill, 221 hours doing a physical activity and 286 hours volunteering.  It was awarded ‘Best Presented Team’ at 2019 Greenpower championships.


To encourage students in East Howe to ASPIRE (the acronym written across the wall of the principal's study - Ambitious, Self-Confident, Physically Literate, Independent Learners, Resilient, Emotionally Literate).  Initially the DfE identified the need for a new academy, but the key factor has been the quality of the staff at TBA. The beneficiaries will always be the local people in East Howe as TBA will always be an academy for the local area, not one that cherry picks students from other areas.

10 Bourne Academy students have won academic scholarships to Canford School.  Part of our Bursary Programme aims to fully support two pupils per year to be awarded bursaries to transfer from The Bourne Academy to the Sixth Form at Canford School for the full two year ‘A’ level course.  

Quotes from TBA Bursary recipients:

“A once in a lifetime opportunity for people from The Bourne Academy.”

“Getting a place at Canford was like a winning lottery ticket.” 

And from Canford staff …

“Bursary pupils infect others with their enthusiasm.  Their presence is a real asset.”

“Recent Bourne Academy pupils make the most of every opportunity at the school.  Other pupils cannot help but be inspired by this.”


The DfE (DCSF as was) approached Canford in 2008 as part of the original academies scheme to help failing schools. The academy opened in September 2010.


Canford does not provide any financial help, but offers staff time and, to a lesser extent, use of its facilities. Mostly teaching staff are involved, but others involved include the technical head of IT, the development department, CCF staff and other sports staff.

Since the opening of a Sixth Form at TBA in September 2013, science and maths teachers at Canford offer practical help, both at Canford and TBA, to teachers at TBA who have not taught 6th form pupils before.

Canford teachers undertaking a PGCE while teaching at Canford are offered second placements at TBA without cost, with a flexible approach tailored to the needs of the teacher involved.

Staff cricket and golf matches between the two schools.

A joint Inset day for all teachers at both schools.

A joint F24 project where (mainly Year 10) pupils from both school build F24 cars and then race them, under the guidance of Canford staff.


The effect of the sponsorship can be easily seen in terms of the improvement to the exam results, the behaviour and the numbers attending the school. Ofsted inspection grades have moved from Failing to 'Good with Outstanding features'. The younger year groups are now full (against a background of falling numbers in the borough).

Pupil Involvement

A year 10 exchange where 24 pupils from each school, split into four groups, spend the morning at each others' schools shadowing their partner.

Science tutoring - The aim is to help Yr 10 students who are struggling to achieve a C-grade by providing one-to-one tuition from a Canford Pupil.

A Year 9 Book Club which meets regularly at each school.

Participation in Canford-led Years 7 & 8 Geography Quiz

Year 12 Careers Symposium

Canford Sixth Formers – classroom assistants for TBA pupils.

Bourne Academy pupils are invited to join the annual Academic partnership day at Canford.

SALPs train Canford pupil panel interviewers

Bourne Academy pupils join Canford pupils on a CCF RN sailing trip.


There are no plans to end the sponsorship or the relationship.