Thank you for your interest in our highly successful and popular school. We are fully comprehensive and welcome girls and boys from Oadby and the surrounding area. Our students are high achieving, feel safe and enjoy learning in a happy and supportive environment.
People often ask me why I chose to work at Manor High School and serve the community of Oadby, Leicester and Leicestershire. The truth is that when I visited in 2012, prior to application, I gained a sense of the school and its “feel”. I could see that the school was not too big at around 900 and that the staff and students knew each other well and enjoyed working and learning together. I could see that there was plenty to work with and build upon.
The children are polite, cheerful and friendly. They enjoy learning and this is reflected in attendance levels that are far in excess of national figures. They feel safe and confident at school and so they are able to focus upon their learning. This is borne out by responses to our regular student voice surveys. We have many visitors to the school and they always comment upon the warm atmosphere, the strong sense of identity and the confidence and friendliness of the students.
My own experience is based on two decades of leadership in various aspects of 11-18 education, for example, as a lead on timetable, curriculum, sixth form, student welfare, data and achievement. As Manor High moves in time with the latest innovations in education, we have recruited highly skilled staff with training and experience in 11-18 education who will be able to bring this richness to our school as it embarks upon change.
What is central to our plans is that the expertise in Key Stage 3, that has been built up over five decades, will provide a strong platform as we grow through to Years 10 and 11 with students we already know and who have thrived upon the supportive and nurturing ethos of Manor High School. We are very academic and high achieving but we are also very caring.
One of the first challenges I presented at Manor High School was to identify the Core Values which are its essence. The students, staff, governors and parents agreed that these were Excellence, Inspiration, Respect and Resilience. These underpin all of our work and planning and the huge amounts of progress our students achieve during their time in our school.
John Donne wrote over four centuries ago that “No Man is an Island” and this is true of schools. Just as the children and staff are part of a wider community fabric, so is the school itself. I love working through the many successful partnerships in the area and this has enabled us to offer richer learning experiences for our students. It is also a useful means of self-evaluation and challenge and it is part of my philosophy, and that of the school, to be receptive to the views and feedback from colleagues and leaders in other schools, from parents and the wider community. Support from home is one of the most important influences on a child’s education and we work closely with all of our parents and carers. As we strive to make further improvements, the support and feedback from parents and carers is vital and much appreciated. I frequently thank parents through newsletters and open evenings for the huge contribution they make through their encouraging and positive feedback.
New students settle quickly because of a number of factors. The school is not too large at around 900 and it is made smaller and more personal through the vertical division into four Houses: Clarendon, Watermead, Bradgate and Knighton. Within each House, children are integrated quickly into tutor groups in which older students develop leadership skills as they support the learning and confidence levels of younger ones. This has been praised highly by parents and students alike. Staff were quick to notice how quickly students settle in to their learning through supportive integration.
Teaching and learning at Manor High are focused upon enjoyment, progress, individual and collective fulfilment and the pursuit of excellence. Both the teaching and the support staff are reflective and welcome feedback from students, parents and carers as they work to meet the needs of all learners. The curriculum is rich and varied with wider opportunities to develop learning inside and outside school. New ideas and initiatives are received with great enthusiasm.
The greatest strength of the school is its excellent students. This is shown in many ways such as concerts, sporting endeavours and artistic performances. Students enjoy their learning, value the school and they are proud to be a part of it. They appreciate the help and guidance they receive from the excellent teaching and support staff. Students are able to contribute to school leadership through our enlightened Vertical Tutoring system and through the House Councils.
I often conduct tours of the school for prospective parents and we are always keen to reduce the stress for parents eager to secure a place at Manor High for their children as quickly as possible through lots of help and support. We welcome visits to the school throughout the year and throughout the school day. Visitors always comment upon the “feel” of the school and express surprise that the school is larger than they realised but relief that the number of students is not too great. I can assure you that we have no plans to expand our numbers. I applaud the desire to see a busy and thriving school in action during a normal day when all of the students are in school and hard at work in the many different aspects of their learning.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you require further information or if you wish to visit the school. Parents, students, staff and governors can access further information about the school via our website.
Liam D Powell