In our work to continuously enrich the academic provision for our pupils, we have reviewed the way the subjects taught to our sixth formers operate together. We are dedicated to ensuring a strong intellectual experience in its own right which, as well as satisfying the content for examination success, also prepares our boys and girls for higher education and the world of work. Beyond school, the world does not operate in the silos presented by GCSE and A-level subjects.
For this reason, we are developing a substantial programme for our sixth formers whereby subjects can collaborate in realistic projects. The programmes introduce pupils to new fields of interest and experience, enabling them to build a portfolio of project-based work during their time with us.
The Medical Sciences Programme is run by Stuart Ingleston-Orme, Head of Science, and brings together Biology, Chemistry and Ethics. It aims to inform, inspire and educate prospective medics, vets, dentists, nurses, and medical scientists throughout the School. Regular meetings of the School’s Medical Society host talks and lectures by expert practitioners and introduce pupils to practical skills. There is an annual visit to the Royal College of Surgeons in London, and throughout the year a number of workshops are undertaken that allow pupils to learn the skills of practising professionals including laparoscopic or keyhole surgery, drilling and repairing broken bones, and whole animal dissections. Pupils from the School volunteer regularly at Royal Derby Hospital through a highly successful and rewarding partnership. Each year, pupils from the School are successful with their applications to a wide range of medical schools, including four successful applicants to Cambridge University in 2014.
The Contemporary Visual Arts Programme is run by our Director of Art, Ian Whitfield. It consists of a family of linked subjects pivoting on Fine Art (Painting, Drawing and Sculpture), Photography and Textiles, but involving a range of subjects including the dramatic arts, music, literature, the humanities, mathematics, sciences and languages. Work is carried by ‘problems’ arising out of the perceptions and ideas of pupils through discussion and experimentation. There are strong links with both colleges and practising artists.
There is a strong tradition of Journalism at the School and the programme is run by Kate Campbell, Head of English. Beyond the Bubble is an online magazine that allows pupils to write critically and insightfully on a range of issues beyond Repton, including politics, science, ethics, and many more. The Reptonian, led by Jon Hill and a pupil editor, collates excellent examples of reporting style journalism that provides a first-rate account of the events that have shaped the school year. Pupils contribute to the School’s journal, Repton Scientific, now in its second year of publication. The Junior and Senior Literary societies are also a starting point for many aspiring journalists, since regular discussions about novels, plays and poems, as well as school trips and visiting speakers, provide rich material for writing about the Arts. Many pupils at Repton are actively involved in journalistic pursuits, working as part of larger organisations, such as Rhino Press, for example, as well as entering (and often winning) essay and journalism competitions. This academic year pupils are looking to forge links with larger news organisations, and provide a more constant steam of reporting based on events that affect life at Repton School and beyond.
We intend to rollout Programmes in Digital Media, Engineering and Law by the end of the academic year.
These programmes are undertaken in collaboration with local universities and industries, and once established we will seek to include pupils from nearby maintained schools to share in this opportunity.