Students who enter Ridgeway with high test scores from primary school, or who are identified through our baseline testing as gifted in a particular subject area, are included in our gifted and talented programme. This includes close mentoring and support to ensure that they are suitably stretched and challenged in order to reach their full potential.
Mr Heayns, who coordinates our support for gifted students, works with staff to ensure that programmes of study stretch and challenge our most able students.
We run a programme of Independent Learning Challenges (now called Re;search) for able students in Years 7 and 8 to help them develop independent learning skills and also their ability to manage their time around a project.
Initially, students were set specific tasks to complete but, after following student feedback, the Independent Learning Challenge programme evolved into the Re;search project. This project sets each student a particular task and skill and gives them the freedom to complete it on an issue, topic or area of their interest.
Older students are monitored for any areas that need further help and are initially offered support within curriculum areas. Ultimately, this may lead to close mentoring by Mr Heayns, working with individual students to help them analyse their own areas for improvement and helping them put in place their own improvement programme.
For our older students, we also run a series of trips to see the realities of university life and what is required of the modern-day student. We also want to show students how to make their applications stand out in the competitive world that we live in. The competition for university places is intense; students need to be able to showcase a range of skills, interests and qualifications to achieve places in top universities.
Click to read more about the path from Ridgeway to university.