Welcome to Highdown School
Highdown School is a very special place. As Headteacher, I am very proud of all we do here and our resolute determination to continue to improve every day. Staff and students alike aspire to achieve excellence in all we do. Our commitment and resilience is underpinned by core values of honesty, responsibility, respect, tolerance and courtesy.
Our philosophy is simple – great teaching supported by committed pastoral care gives great outcomes and life chances for our young people. Our curriculum is broad and balanced and provides a solid platform for life in our Sixth Form. Life at Highdown is a five or more likely a seven-year journey. We provide learning opportunities to ensure our students remain stimulated and motivated and develop a lifelong thirst for learning. Highdowners should go from outstanding lesson to outstanding lesson being challenged and guided to make the most of great opportunities.
Our extracurricular offer is superb. We make full advantage of our fantastic site with the full range of sports. All students will find something to enjoy outside the classroom. It might be in the performing arts or in the ‘Knit and Natter’ club. There really is something for everyone.
The Highdown community is tolerant and happy. Our students do not tolerate prejudice or unkindness from one another. Staff and students work together to promote inclusively on every level. For those needing additional support our STAR centre provides care and develops life skills. For those who are aspiring to Oxbridge our bespoke programmes enable aspiration to be successful.
Our commitment to staff development is second to none. A motivated staff body provides the best education for our children and Highdown believes in lifelong learning for all.
Whether a prospective parent, student or colleague, come and visit us at Highdown. Your Highdown experience can then begin. I look forward to meeting you.
Rachel E Cave
Students are placed in to one of eight Mentor Groups, nine in Year 8 and ten in Year 7. Their mentor is their first point of contact for any problems or issues. Each year group has a pastoral leader, a Head of Achievement, who monitors their welfare and progress. Heads of achievement and mentors get to know students well and are able to help students make the most of their time at Highdown School.
Students are able to access first aid treatment throughout the day. They should report to the Student Reception to see the First Aid Officer. Should students experience emotional difficulties they have open access to the STAR Centre at break and lunchtime, as well as by appointment at other times of the day. We are also able to arrange meetings between students and the School Nurse or a counselling service. Should a student's needs be more acute, the pastoral team or Safeguarding team has a network of contacts in external agencies for other forms of support.
We have an excellent group of Year 8 'buddies' who help new Year 7 students to quickly settle in at Highdown. If students join Highdown mid-year, they are assigned a 'buddy' in their mentor group to help them find their way around. We also run a Transition Club in the STAR Centre at lunchtimes to help students develop new friendships.