Ark Greenwich Free School
Greenwich, United Kingdom
About Ark Greenwich Free School
We opened in September 2012 as a new Free School - a four-form entry, state-funded, mixed, non-denominational, 11-18 comprehensive school for the children of Greenwich. We are now full at 11-16. The School is extremely popular and is 6 times oversubscribed and staff are hard-working and committed to the school’s vision.
We have some very clear ‘givens’ and below is set out what we think are the most important features of our model. The school's ethos runs in line with our core values of Ambition, Growth, Fellowship & Scholarship. Underpinning this is a clear focus on Behaviour and we have exceptionally high expectations of our students.
We invest heavily in the curriculum and believe that the design and implementation of the curriculum is at the heart of school life. It creates an atmosphere for learning and sets the tone and philosophy for teachers.
Alongside being a school that values the importance of subject disciplines we also invest in high-quality weekly training and have access to world-class development opportunities through our partnerships with a wide range of schools, universities and sector-leading organisations. We are an accredited CPD provider through the Teacher Development Trust, many of our departments have won external awards in History and Computer Science, and we work closely with well-regarded curriculum providers. This means that we can help all staff at the school grow and develop.
We run a compulsory enrichment programme every Wednesday afternoon to ensure all our pupils receive a more holistic education. All of the AGFS staff commit to delivering elements of this. We also run a series of 12 ‘Drop Down Days’ throughout the year where the timetable is collapsed, enabling all pupils to undertake day-long programmes and activities – for example, university visits and trips to museums and theatres - as well as providing space for more intensive subject-led learning and extended academic projects.
AGFS has been described by The Economist as providing “plenty of hope for British education” and was selected by the Evening Standard as one of five “new model schools” in London.
Additionally we have received the following comments:
“Fantastic and extraordinary…Quiet lessons, happy students, nuclear focus, masses of support for students” Tom Bennett, founder of Research Ed and behaviour adviser to the Department for Education
“Amongst the highest performing schools in London” Evening Standard
“It was a real pleasure to visit AGFS. You are absolutely focusing on the right things and should be extremely proud of your school” Rebecca Boomer-Clark (Former Regional Schools Commissioner)
'Every child deserves the best possible start in life - and nothing is more important to them than a good education. The teachers and staff at Greenwich Free School are passionate about the importance of education, and they combine their passion with great professionalism and skill. They will do their very best for your child.'
Lord Adonis, former Schools Minister
'GFS is one of the country's most impressive and forward-thinking Free Schools, attracting considerable national attention and setting an exceptionally high quality bar for future Free Schools. I'm confident that its superb team will provide an outstanding education for the children of Greenwich.'
Rachel Wolf, Director, New Schools' Network
We warmly invite you to come and visit GFS and see for yourself all that we are doing to provide outstanding teaching and pastoral care to all our pupils.
Life in the Greenwich Free School is hard work, but it is also truly engaging, exciting and fun. It is a school of which our pupils are proud – and we are proud of each and every one of them.
Sharp CPD, supportive staff and hard-working passionate students; a combination every teacher could only wish for!- J Finneran, MFL NQT 2017
It was a great decision for me to move to work at GFS, there is a family style atmosphere and great careers progression opportunities.- Staff member since 2014
The growth, fellowship and scholarship values within both the students and the staff is a great support for everyone’s development at the school.- Staff member since 2015
GFS is an exciting school to work at on the cutting edge of educational research. As a staff member there are exceptional opportunities for individual Growth thanks to an extensive and supportive CPD programme. As a teacher at GFS you are not managed, but rather inspired and motivated to fulfil your potential.- Staff member since 2014
As part of a small school, there is a great sense of camaraderie and fellowship. We help each other wherever we can and we always feel like a significant part of the school; nobody gets lost in the system. My colleagues are talented, witty and supportive. We’re also reflective and always looking to improve. As a member of GFS, you will learn a lot, feel supported and be given excellent development opportunities.- Staff member since 2013