GCSE revision classes for year 11 students at seven partner schools and a session on tackling exam stress

Partner: Coombe Girls' School, Coombe Boys' School, Ricards Lodge High School, Ursuline High School, Raynes Park High School, Grey Court School, St Mark's Academy, Mitcham (1)
Partner type: Maintained School
Project category: Academic

King’s College School offers GCSE revision classes in a range of core subjects to Year 11 students at the secondary schools in the Wimbledon ISSP. The revision sessions are run by staff from King’s and the partner schools, and take place every Thursday afternoon in the Spring Term. Revision classes offered in 2015 included Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, History, Geography, English Language, English Literature, and preparation for the speaking tests in Spanish and French. Revision classes in Mathematics, English language, and English literature are offered at A/A* or C/D borderline levels. The classes last one hour and over 200 students took part in 2015. The final session was a plenary devoted to dealing with exam stress hosted by our school counsellor.

The partnership involves Coombe Girls’ School as well as Coombe Boys’ School, Grey Court School, St Mark’s Academy, Raynes Park High School, Ricards Lodge High School, Ursuline High School and Hollyfield School.

Aims of the project

The aim of the GCSE revision classes is to raise attainment and confidence in both core and non-core subjects. There was a need across the Partnership to help students improve their GCSE grades, particularly in English and Mathematics. A session on tackling exam stress could be beneficial. 

The immediate beneficiaries are the students themselves, but the teachers also gain experience teaching from a different syllabus or to a different level than that at their own school.

Background and goals

This course of GCSE revision sessions was one of the first arrangements made by the Wimbledon Independent State School Partnership created by Heather McKissack, formerly senior mistress at King’s, and it has been running every year since 2004. Our partnership with Coombe Girls’ Girl began the previous year and was established by the then Head of Coombe Girls’, Carol Campbell, and Heather McKissack with the aim of raising attainment at CGS and providing training and CPD opportunities for King’s staff. The partnership is strongly supported by Carol Campbell’s successor, Debbie Walls, and Heather McKissack is a governor of the Coombe Federation. The extra session on exam stress was suggested by Coombe Girls’ School at a meeting of the executive committee of the Wimbledon Partnership in 2013.

Resources

Availability of teaching and non-teaching staff: over 15 members of staff were involved in the teaching of the project in 2015 across the whole Spring Term and catering (the students are given squash and buns when they arrive!). 15 classrooms/labs, and a large room for the session on tackling exam stress, and availability of the school counsellor for this. All classes are based at King’s: classrooms, computers, science equipment, catering. King’s College School provides all funding.

Impact

The anticipated outcomes are that the students’ knowledge and self-confidence will be reinforced and that the classes will have a beneficial impact on GCSE results. GCSE results are tracked (NB Hollyfield only became an associate partner in 2014, due to the Head of Grey Court School also taking it on). A table of results will be supplied in August 2015.

Pupil involvement

All pupils involved are from the state sector.  Year 11. Mixed-gender classes. 

Frequency and duration

Annual project every Spring Term. Classes happen once a week for one hour after school (4-5pm). The final session is in the last week of the partner schools’ spring term. We foresee that it will continue so long as there is demand from our partner schools.