Welcome from The Headmaster
I am delighted that you are interested in The Crypt School for your son’s or daughter’s future education. We are an outstanding grammar school where all pupils make superb progress in their academic work. We place the child at the heart of all that we do here and have a reputation as a caring and friendly school, a school in which all pupils can thrive. We also excel across a wide range of sports, in the creative arts and we offer considerable opportunities for educational and sporting trips and tours at home and abroad. In 2012 we were judged by Ofsted to be an Outstanding School in all areas, in 2013 we became a National Teaching School and in 2014 we gained the NACE award, recognising our success with more able, gifted and talented students.
As you would expect our exam results are excellent, and we offer a broad and balanced curriculum. Each year around a third of our Year 13 students gain entry to the most selective universities, and around 90% gain places at their first choice university, including Oxbridge and the Russell group universities. The percentage of A* and A grades awarded at GCSE has risen year on year, and especially the numbers achieving 8 or more A* and A grade passes. The reason for this outstanding success is the strong focus we have on continually reviewing and improving the standard of teaching and learning throughout the school. All teaching staff are committed to developing their teaching practice to ensure their pupils’ learning is outstanding.
Whilst we strongly focus on excellence in the classroom to achieve outstanding attainment in exams, we believe it is equally important that our pupils’ wellbeing is placed at the centre of our school ethos. We have developed a caring and supportive environment where boys and girls show respect for each other and for both their teachers and for other adults within the school community. Our pupils enjoy learning, and each is valued as an individual. This positive ethos, in which our pupils come into school looking forward to learning and behave impeccably, is the foundation for our academic success.
As important as exam results are, we also want our students to develop the qualities, skills and values which will enable them to contribute richly to society. Our curriculum is therefore supported by a wide range of enrichment activities, trips and visits, and extra-curricular clubs. This breadth of opportunity enables our students to gain leadership and teamwork skills, and to develop attributes such as tolerance, compassion, resilience and determination. In Year 7 and 8 we have introduced a wellbeing programme which helps pupils to develop just those sets of attributes and which supports them to both settle in and to thrive. In the VI Form, we have developed an employability award which seeks to equip all students with the skills they need to confidently take their place in the wider world after they leave school.
Beyond the classroom, there is much for all pupils to become involved in. Our extracurricular sports provision was judged to be ‘exceptional’ in a one day Ofsted inspection in December 2013. Each year we stage a major school play and we have thriving music and art departments. At each stage in a pupil’s journey through the school we encourage and provide opportunities for them to develop their skills and personal qualities – through being form captains and sports leaders, members of the three school councils and as prefects and members of the VI Form Student Executive Committee at the end of their journey through the school. Trips and visits occur for each year group, included a visit to France in Year 7, to Correze activity centre for Year 9, foreign exchange trips in Y10 and 12, as well as an annual whole school ski trip. From Year 9, pupils can also participate in the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme which aims to develop key skills such as leadership.
The School has been fortunate to have received considerable funding over the last few years to bring about improvement to the school estate. Around £7 million has been spent on the school estate since 2009. Funding has led to the renovation of the changing rooms and the Music department; the old gymnasium has been converted into a new Drama studio and a state of the art Fitness Suite. The Food Technology room, completed in 2010, has proved to be a valuable and much desired addition to the curriculum. The VI Form centre, completed in 2008, gives impressive facilities to help support the learning of our senior students and in July 2015 we opened our new Engineering Building, comprising two new science laboratories, 5 maths classrooms and a robotics classroom. In 2016 we won funding from the EFA to completely renovate our sports hall and to construct a new classroom block and toilets adjacent to it. This project will be completed by Easter 2017. We will continue to seek new funding to bring about further development of our estate.
We have high expectations for all of our pupils. We both challenge and support them to achieve the best they can, so that when they ultimately leave the school, they do so as well-rounded young adults, with the confidence, knowledge and skills required for life in the modern world. I share with staff and students a real pride in our school. It is a privilege and pleasure to work here and play a part in shaping the lives of our students.
In September 2018 we plan to admit girls into Year 7 for the first time. This change will offer parents an additional choice of a co-educational selective school where only one currently exists in the county and bring to The Crypt School the benefits of a co-educational intake. Please see the co-education pages of the website for more details on this exciting change.
Please do come and visit us on one of our open days, or at any other time by appointment. We will be delighted to show you around and answer any questions which you may have. I look forward to meeting you in due course.