Head wants pupils at leading universities

HIGH HOPES: Head of House Amie Butcher with headteacher Wayne Lloyd and pupils Brooke Wright 14 and William Nicholson 14.
HIGH HOPES: Head of House Amie Butcher with headteacher Wayne Lloyd and pupils Brooke Wright 14 and William Nicholson 14.
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The headteacher at Thomas Gainsborough School says six pupils will gain places every year to Oxbridge “as a norm” by 2018.

Wayne Lloyd has set the ambitious target as part of his future vision for the school, which he has led for the last year.

He says that rather than it being an exception for Sudbury pupils to get university places at Oxford and Cambridge, they will go there every year as a matter of course.

Speaking about plans to raise standards, he said he expected a third of the school to “be on almost a grammar school equivalent curriculum” in future.

“By the time our current Year 9s are Year 13s, our challenge is to have half-a-dozen students a year going to Oxbridge as the norm,” he said.

He said that on top of £2million already pledged to bring the school up to scratch for an increased number of pupils, a further £10million would be spent on redeveloping it in 2018.

In September, there will be a big influx of 400 new pupils as a direct result of Suffolk’s change from three-tier to two-tier education, bringing the total number of pupils to 1,150.

And 16 new teachers have been recruited to deal with the extra pupil head count, bringing teaching staff numbers to 100.

Great Cornard Middle School will become part of the Thomas Gainsborough campus when it closes in the summer. This Easter, work begins on creating a new pathway between the two schools.

An appeal has been launched to help name five new houses at the school. It currently has four, one of which is Armstrong, named after the now discredited Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong.

“We are inviting suggestions for five new house names and we would like to invite friends of the school, new and old, to come up with suggestions that reflect the community,” added Mr Lloyd.

Names should be sent to enquiries@tgschool.net or by post.