Pupils ready for big school
YEAR 7 pupils at Gloucester Academy will predominantly be based in just one classroom for their entire first year in a bid to smooth the transition to ‘big school’.
Students are preparing to move into the new £15million academy, in Cotteswold Road, and excitement is building as they look forward to checking out their new classrooms.
Swanky new rooms including a super lab, the Heart Space, the Da Vinci Room and also the Zanussi room await new pupils.
However, the new intake of Year 7 pupils will be based in mainly one classroom with subject lecturers in subjects such as maths, English, geography and history going to them rather than the other way around, as is the norm.
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Headteacher John Reilly said: “It is something we are trying for the first time this year, and we’re hopeful it will work.
“It is geared towards making that transition from primary school to secondary school easier for the student.
“In primary schools they are used to being taught in one classroom for everything, so it can be quite daunting when they start secondary school and they see this huge building with dozens of classrooms.
“If it doesn’t work then we will change it, but we think it is worth a try.”
For subjects like technology, art and PE the Year 7 pupils will move to specialist classrooms, but they will stay put for the others.
However, Eric Reddy, from Tuffley, whose daughter Olivia is starting secondary school at Beaufort in September, isn’t sure the idea will work.
He said: “Not good, I think staying in the same classroom will induce boredom and fatigue, a change of scenery revives interest.
“And what about subject relevant material on the walls etc?”
While the finishing touches are being made to the new building, the old school building, which has stood in Cotteswold Road for 56 years, is being demolished.
In its place will be car parking and sport fields for the new Academy.
The building started out life as a mixed school at the current Colwell Arts Centre in Derby Road in 1907, and then changed its name to Central School in 1925. It was in 1957 that the boys moved to Cotteswold Road and it became Central Technical School for Boys and the girls moved to what is now Barnwood Park.
It has seen many name changes throughout the years from Saintbridge School to Central Technology College and it has had many headteachers, with the longest serving head being Eddie Holman from 1967 to 1982.