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Equality of opportunity at heart of new secondary school model

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Monday 01 July 2019

The new model of secondary education will provide students with equality of opportunity which is impossible in the current model.

In the future One School/Two Colleges model all students in mainstream States' schools will have access to a range of subject choices and facilities which cannot be provided in each of the four existing schools. 

This week, the Committee for Education, Sport & Culture will submit proposals for the capital developments necessary to deliver the new model of secondary education, which was agreed by the States last year.

Ahead of publication of the policy letter, the Committee is releasing further details about how the new model will ensure opportunity and excellence for all students.

Deputy Matt Fallaize, President of the Committee for Education, Sport & Culture, said:

"Inequality of opportunity is built into our current system.  Students have different opportunities depending entirely on their 11+ results or where in the island they live.  This cannot be right and will be addressed by the introduction of the One School/Two Colleges model over the next few years.

For example, opportunities to study Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) vary from school to school - not just between the Grammar School and the High Schools but between the High Schools.  Some students can take GCSEs in two languages from a choice of three while others can take only one.

Some students can do triple science, which is worth three GCSEs; some can do only combined science, in which courses in biology, chemistry and physics lead to two GCSEs; and others have to select one or two of the sciences.

ICT is currently compulsory at Key Stage 4 in some schools but not others.

The current inequality of facilities affects opportunities in physical education.  Some students do not have swimming pools on site to allow them to swim all year round and not all students can benefit from the same range of sports throughout the year."

Removing inequality of opportunity was one of the main reasons why the States backed the One School/Two Colleges model last year. 

Students will have access to modern, purpose-built facilities in schools which are large enough to offer the broadest range of subject choices and wider opportunities in sports, the arts and personal development generally.

A broader range of options will be offered in each option block at Key Stage 4.  This will allow a higher proportion of students to take their first choice combination of subjects than is possible currently.  Both Colleges will offer triple science at GCSE as well as options in French, Spanish and German and a broad range of options in the Humanities, Arts, Technology and other curriculum areas.  The highest quality facilities in the sciences and technology which are currently available only to some students will be available to every student in the two Colleges.  A range of technical and vocational qualifications will continue to be offered by the Colleges working closely with the new Guernsey Institute, which merges the College of Further Education, the Institute of Health & Social Care Studies and the GTA University Centre from the 1st of July. 

All students in the two Colleges will benefit from indoor swimming pools, modern sports halls and gyms or dance rooms as well as significantly improved Multi-Use Games Areas (MUGAs) which allow sports to be played in all weathers. 

Planning for the curriculum and facilities at the new 11-18 Colleges is further advanced than at the new Guernsey Institute.  However, the Committee's commitment to further and higher education will be reflected in the Policy Letter published on Monday, which will include proposals to construct purpose-built facilities for all further and higher education at les Ozouets.  This will address the inequality of facilities currently faced by students in further education by replacing the wholly outdated facilities which house the College of FE across three sites.  The integration of further and higher education providers in the purpose-built Guernsey Institute will provide all students in this sector of education with access to high quality facilities which will be the equal of their counterparts in the 11-18 Colleges.

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