The Duston School
Northamptonshire, United Kingdom
About The Duston School
About The Duston School
The Duston School is very much part of the local landscape and is at the heart of the local community. The school sits on a large and attractive site in the village of Duston which is on the outskirts of Northampton. We were fortunate to benefit from the PFI scheme with both the Secondary and Primary schools being brand new. The secondary school opened in September 2008 and The Primary September 2015. We were the first All through school in Northampton Town and when full we will have over 2000 pupils.
In September 2007 the school moved into a new £28m building which has state of the art facilities to make learning really come alive.
Our spacious, well lit buildings and extensive sports facilities offer high quality state of the art facilities for sports and both vocational and academic learning and teaching. The design of the buildings aims to reflect the school’s successful ethos, and it’s our pledge is to ensure that every student is given the opportunity to achieve their potential whether their talents lie in the arts, literature, sport, science, technologies or more traditional subjects.
Our curriculum is designed to be personalised to the individual student therefore allowing them to achieve rapid progress and to be successful in their future. We want The Duston School always to be a positive learning environment where we offer the best for all students.
The school converted voluntarily to academy status under the Academies Enterprise Trust (AET). In 2014 the school chose to leave the AET and is now governed by The Duston Education Trust (TDET). TDET ethos is that it cares, builds possibilities and potential, nurtures what students are and what they can become. It expects the best of everyone. Our students are happy, confident, resilient and selfcritical. TDET values hard work, determination and ambition, acknowledging and celebrating the variety of ways in which learners can be excellent. Staff wellbeing is also of prime importance to us. Staff working conditions are excellent; faculty work areas afford our staff amenities and resources of the highest quality and standard. We provide a health benefit package for our staff and our onsite Consultant Senior HR Advisor offers high quality personal support. Sound, financial business management enables us to undertake innovative projects both large and small. Over the past 2 years, major school funded developments have included the opening of our Primary school, Teaching School and School Centred Initial Teacher Training Centre (SCITT). Smaller projects include the installation of smart boards and sets of tablets and iPads in all classrooms. The school is fully networked so that computeraided learning on PCs, tablets and laptop computers can take place throughout the site.
The Duston School – Primary Phase
Our Primary School opened in September 2015 with two Year R classes and one Year 1 class. Each year we intake two forms of Year R children, becoming full in September 2021. The school is a bright and modern learning environment with a caring and engaging feel. The vision of the Trust ‘every child whatever it takes’ is fully embraced in everything we do. A skillful, dynamic and personalised approach to teaching has led to outstanding outcomes overall for all groups of children in 2016. A highly skilled staff works as a team to skillfully drive learning forward through specifically chosen, proven high quality teaching methods such as Singapore Maths and Talk for Writing. Highly effective targeted teaching, innovative groupings of children, swift intense intervention, high expectations for challenge, progress, presentation and feedback as well as close relationships with parents ensured that all groups of children achieved exceptionally well in 2016 with results well above the national average. Every child’s day in primary is planned in a very meticulous, yet creative way, to ensure that every child is constantly learning and maximum use is made of time. Core subject teaching is not fragmented, but is instead skillfully integrated across a child’s day, ensuring children are given many opportunities to effectively apply and embed skills learnt. The integrated approach to each day ensures more time for children to gain hands on experiences, have more problem solving/research tasks and therefore learn in greater depth.
Specialist teaching from primary and secondary staff this academic year in Spanish, music and dance (ballet, modern, jazz & street dance) from EYFS upwards has greatly enhanced skills at a much younger age than expected. Specialist teaching will increase year on year ensuring a seamless transition into Year 7. Fabulous Friday which takes place fortnightly was precisely planned and taught throughout 2015 & 2016 to enhance the arts skills of all children. Focus weeks as well as cultural celebrations are held yearly to enhance the profile of all subjects and the understanding of different faiths.
We are dedicated to fully developing the whole child. Children say that they feel cared for and successful in their learning. They say that they enjoy coming to school, they like learning and that they are expected to work hard. Children also feel that any behaviour that does not match the school expectations is dealt with immediately. Protective behaviours are explicitly taught across the year. Children demonstrate through questioning that they know how to keep themselves safe in a variety of situations.
There is a strong bond between the primary and secondary schools. We are all fully dedicated to educate every child from 4 through to 19. A number of innovative cross phase initiatives have greatly improved outcomes for many children, including many hard to reach children during the last academic year. Our organisational model means we can provide a dynamic allthrough education, ensuring that there is clear continuity through all stages of learning. We look forward to developing this relationship year on year.
The Duston School Sixth Form
A relentless approach to student focused achievement and progress is what has driven up standards at sixth form. The sixth form has increased in capacity over the last few years, with a wide range of level three academic and vocational subjects. There has been a record number of Russell group successful applicants, with over half of our grades achieving A*B, with 1/5 grades being A*/A. We are above national average for progress and have a 53% increase in A level entries since 2014. 75% of our year 13 attended university this year, with 22% at Russell groups.
Our students believe their best interests are at the heart of all that we do, and have recently said that 'it is the best they could wish for.' We have excellent programmes for enrichment and non-core options, including EPQ, and sports leader. We are a leading school for core maths and have an extensive work experience programme. Our sixth form is an integral part of the whole school community and our students in all year groups benefit from our focus on role modelling and mentoring.