All learners in the Academy are members of a House which currently runs vertically from Year 7 to Post 16 but which will be developed further this year to include learners from Key Stages 1 and 2. The Houses at Bradford Academy are named Bronte, Hammond, Irwinand King. These House names were chosen by the learners at Bradford Academy in 2007 when we opened, and were agreed upon following a student voice activity based on leading citizens of influence. Students wear a House-coloured tie and meet with Home Teams 3 times a week on Mondays (check-in), Wednesdays (check-up) and Thursdays (check-out) for half an hour each time. Houses also have a weekly assembly which takes place on Tuesdays.
The House systemis a fundamental part of the Academy that underpins achievement and enjoyment within and across all facets of the Academy. Each House is led by a Head of House and is made up of 13 Home Teams, ‘family units’ of students in years 7 to 11 which are led by aLearning Guide, whose role is central to every learner being ‘known, valued and understood’. Post 16 learners follow a bespoke Home Team programme which encourages them to develop their leadership qualities in school while also catering for the specific demands required of a Post 16 student. The Learning Guide is the first point of contact for almost all learners at the Academy and meet with parents at least 3 times a year when they are invited to Progress Update Reviews (PURs), where they meet to discuss the learner’s progress and identify what can be done to close the gap between potential and actual achievement.
Rewards are a large part of recognizing achievement through the House system. House points are awarded to learners through all aspects of school life; these are currently given through stamps in the stamp booklet. House Points are then collated in weeklyMonday Rituals sessions and feed into the overall House Points Totals. This half term Home Teams are competing against each other alongside the House competition, to get the highest points total. The Home Team with the most points overall by the October break will be rewarded with a trip to Pizza Hut where they will have dinner on Bradford Academy!
Throughout the year, learners are given the opportunity to participate and compete against each other in ‘fun’ activities as part of the Structured House Competition Programme and within the House Competition Carousel (as well as numerous other charity events during the year). This gives learners the opportunity to engage in alternative learning experiences with a competitive twist, allowing them to win points for their House and experience new activities which cover a range of skills and attributes – recent examples of this are house pizza and t-shirt design and production, a Singstar competition, a Dodgeball tournament and team problem solving challenges, including human connect 4 and a drainpipe challenge!
At the end of each Academic year we celebrate the achievements, participation and progress made in each House through an Awards Evening, known as The Night of a Thousand Stars. This is a fantastic event which allows learners, staff and parents to celebrate success on all levels and for a range of reasons. The destiny of the trophies on offer is in the hands of every single learner at the Academy – and the House system embraces the notion that every child matters and every child can be successful in some way. Participation is the key to success, and the recognition of this comes not only through exam results, but in the progress made in all areas of the ECM agenda and so EVERY learner can contribute and be recognized within the House System at the Academy.
Each House has elected student leaders, with House Captains in Key Stages 3 and 4. Each Home Team also has a Home Team Rep. Each of these positions carries responsibility for ensuring that student voice is shared and heard across the Houses and taken up to Student Council level and beyond. They meet regularly to discuss key concerns and identify areas for change. The names of the student leaders in each house are displayed on the relevant House Noticeboard in the Forum and can also be seen on each individual House’s plasma screen in the Forum. If a student has a concern of any kind, the first place to raise it is with their Home Team Rep and/or Learning Guide. New to this year is a structured programme which encourages Post 16 learners to take on leadership roles within the House system. Post 16 learners can now sign up to be Sport and Competition leaders, ‘Primary Phase’ leaders and Home Team leaders to name just a few of the positions available.
If you have any queries about the House System at the Academy please contact us via the school telephone number or use the contact form below. Using the contact form below you can send a message to the Heads of Houses, Mrs Laura Kendall - Strategic Lead for Student Engagement, Mr Matthew Todd – Strategic Leader for House Competition or Mr Brad Moxon – Director of House.