Head of Science, Croydon

Closing date:

Harris City Academy Crystal PalaceCroydon

Date posted:
Start date: September 2019/January 2020
Contract type: Full Time
Salary: Leadership Scale (Outer London)
Contract term: Permanent
Suitable for NQTs: No

The science team is a creative and dynamic department consisting of fourteen teachers and three technicians.  All are subject specialists in biology, chemistry or physics.  High expectations are set within the department for both students and teachers alike. We strive to ensure that we deliver an imaginative, up to date and relevant curriculum. Consequently the department has an outstanding track record for academic success at all key stages.

The science department at Harris City Academy Crystal Palace enjoyed some outstanding results in 2017.  The success at KS4 is part of the reason the science KS5 uptake is so impressive, where we have more biology, chemistry and physics groups than any other site in the Harris Federation. Our Year 13 students regularly go on to read science or science related courses at both Oxbridge and Russell Group Universities.

All students are assumed to have the potential to study towards Further Additional Science (three GCSEs) from Year 9.  The best performing sets are given a Triple Science entry test in Year 10.  This assessment is used to indicate which students have the ability and motivation to study the more challenging triple GCSE pathway. Student learning inside the classroom is supported by a rich variety of extra-curricular visits.  Biology trips include visits to the Royal College of Pathologists, surgical workshops and dissections at the Linn Theatre.  Physicists have the opportunity to attend the North London Observatory, and to take part in the London Gifted and Talented Technology Challenge. 

Professional development of staff is promoted and supported. Performance Appraisal objectives are set and training opportunities identified, and all staff are involved in the Academy Improvement Planning and review process. The department benefits from the very latest teaching and learning strategies and innovations for literacy as well as ensuring that all teachers are expert practitioners in their field. 

Teaching is differentiated and personalised to meet the individual needs of all students. Lessons are planned to enhance students’ speaking and listening, reading and writing skills. Students, particularly in the Sixth Form, are encouraged to do their own wider reading using both the magazine subscriptions available in the library but also carefully selected online content. Homework is integral to students’ success and books are marked to provide feedback to students and inform future planning.

The study of science is underpinned by promoting curiosity and an investigative approach to problem solving.  Practical work allows students to directly interact with the world around them, and they are encouraged to explore ideas and concepts beyond the curriculum.  These are fundamental skills, useful within scientific study and beyond.

Your opportunity

You will have a wealth of opportunities to develop as a leader with the Harris Federation. We can offer you a range of bespoke courses and qualifications through our Teaching School, including our Aspiring Leaders NPQH for aspiring principals.

Succession planning is a key part of our success as a Federation, and we believe that we are at the forefront of developing the next generation of Leaders. We can help prepare you for your next Senior Leadership challenge, investing in your knowledge and expertise through regular support, coaching and a wide range of professional development and training.

What we are looking for:

We look for talented individuals who want to be a part of transforming education in London, and helping create exceptional places of learning.

Please download the job pack for a full job description and person specification.

About Harris City Academy Crystal Palace:

Harris City Academy Crystal Palace is a pioneering academy for 1,300 students aged 11-18, and celebrated its 25th anniversary last academic year. The founding academy of the Harris Federation, it has three consecutive outstanding judgments by Ofsted, most recently finding the academy to be outstanding in every aspect in 2014. It is one of the most oversubscribed comprehensive schools in the country and in the top 5% for performance.

Why work at Harris City Academy Crystal Palace?

  • A long established and highly successful school: one of the most oversubscribed in the country and the top school in Croydon at Attainment 8 2017
  • As a Teaching School, we are able to offer all teachers an extensive programme of first class professional development and a vibrant learning community giving all the opportunities to excel.
  • All the advantages of a successful academy group, including a strong central team of support, teaching and leadership staff
  • Generous Harris rewards and benefits package

Come and see us in action: visits to Harris City Academy Crystal Palace are strongly encouraged and very welcome. Please call 0208 771 2261 or info@harriscrystalpalace.org.uk to arrange a time to come in or an informal conversation with the Principal.

Harris Benefits

As part of the Harris Federation, we can offer you a range of benefits, including:

  • A network of fellow senior leaders and Principals with a wealth of knowledge and expertise
  • Support and mentoring from some of the best executive leaders in education
  • Unrivalled opportunities for leadership progression and preparing you for your first Principalship
  • Pension scheme (TPS) and access to our Harris Wellbeing Cash Plan, covering a range of health and wellbeing benefits
  • Plus, the opportunity to work with our amazing students!

Click here for a full list of Harris benefits. 

The Harris Federation

Our academy is part of the Harris Federation, the leading large Multi Academy Trust in the country for both primary and secondary education. Harris has an unrivalled track record in raising standards and achieving success for the children in our academies.

Professional development and sharing best practice are a key part of the Harris Federation success, and we can draw on this to offer you top quality training at every stage of your career path, from Beginner Teacher to Middle Leader. We will invest in you with coaching, mentoring, and can offer a wide range of training programmes, delivered by our Teaching School Alliance.

We look for talented teachers who are passionate about their subject and making a difference. You can help us transform education in London, and create exceptional places of learning.

Please note: academies may hold interviews as and when applications are received, and this job may be withdrawn at any point without notice. You will still be able to add information until the closing date, but you will not be able to submit your application. With this in mind, you are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

Harris academies are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and expect all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. All offers of employment are subject to an Enhanced DBS check, and where applicable, a prohibition from teaching check will be completed for all applicants. In line with our commitments to safeguarding, the Harris Federation uses preferred agencies and is unable to work with any agencies where Terms of Business have not been agreed by both parties prior to an engagement. Harris Federation is fully committed to equality and to valuing diversity as an employer and a provider of education.



More about Harris City Academy Crystal Palace
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Type: Mainstream School
Phase: Secondary with sixth form
Funding status: State - Academy
Gender: Mixed
Age Range: 11 - 18 years
Address: Maberley Road, Upper Norwood, London, SE19 2JH, United Kingdom. View in Google Maps
Telephone: +44 20 8771 2261
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Harris City Academy Crystal Palace opened as Harris CTC in 1990 and converted to an academy in September 2007. The academy is a mixed school for 1,300 students aged 11-18 recruiting students from Croydon, Bromley, Lewisham, Southwark and Lambeth. The...