This week I'd like to take the opportunity to explain a little more about the re-run of the Year 9 Options process.
On Friday we wrote to Year 9 parents to inform them that we were re-running the Options process. Frankly, we'd got it wrong. During the pandemic, despite the fantastic efforts of Mr Mortlock and his team, the students had not received the right advice and guidance they needed to make informed choices. I take the blame for that and I would like to apologise to both our students and our parents. What it does mean, however, is that we have to make up for it and that means prioritising Year 9 next week and ensuring they get the right advice and guidance this time round.
Leading a school is about raising aspirations and generating high ambitions. At LECA, we want our students to compete on an equal footing with their peers in other schools and that means we need to match what they offer and what pathways our students have access to. We need to believe that our students can achieve things that even they don't they can. We need to encourage our students to aim for the best further and higher education providers and offer them the chance to achieve in the subjects they need to apply to them. Some of you will have heard of the Ebacc - that is what we are going to drive forward at LECA because we believe our students should have the very best life chances when they leave us and move on.
The Ebacc pathway is made up English, Maths and Science with the addition of Spanish (or a modern foreign language) and either Geography or History which the students choose between. That then leaves two open choices to add subjects that students are interested in so they can then add Music, Art or Photography, DT, Engineering, Performing Arts, Sport, Health and Social Care or Child Development and Business. We think this represents an excellent balance between the academic, vocational and the Arts and will mean that all students will have access to a broad and balanced Key Stage 4 curriculum. In doing this, we increase the opportunities that are available to all of our students and keep more doors open for them.
I know that some people will not embrace this change and I wholeheartedly respect that. All of the staff at LECA always have the students at the heart of what we do and we believe this is one of the most positive decisions we have made for the students at our school.
I will, of course, be in further communication with parents in the coming weeks and I thank you for your patience and understanding.