We are one school with two parts and thus offer continuity of learning from nursery to the threshold of university and career:
- Brontë House (Junior)
- Woodhouse Grove (Secondary)
Brontë House is set in its own spacious campus just a quarter of a mile from Woodhouse Grove and provide outstanding opportunities for children between the ages of 2½ and 11.
Over half the pupils at Woodhouse Grove join us from other schools at the age of 11 but pupils do join at other ages, particularly at 13 and 16. We provide a full and varied curriculum and a wide range of extra-curricular activities under the guidance of well-qualified teachers.
We are a co-educational community in which boys and girls can flourish, learning together and being prepared properly for the world beyond school. Day pupils and boarders alike enjoy the extensive facilities and special atmosphere. Wherever a child's ability lies, we will seek to nurture and encourage its development.
Our purpose is expressed in the following aims:
- To develop the academic potential of each pupil, successfully and enjoyably.
- To foster mature and caring behaviour and high standards.
- To develop talents and skills whether physical, technical, social or artistic.
We hope that our pupils will go into a world of opportunity with the confidence born of achievement in the range of activities open to them, and with the strength of character developed by their sustained exposure to challenges and experiences in a caring and secure setting.
Visitors to Woodhouse Grove often comment on our friendly and purposeful atmosphere - we value that and hope you will too.
Headmaster, Woodhouse Grove.
Woodhouse Grove School was founded by the Methodist Conference in 1812 for the education of the sons of ministers and now welcomes pupils and staff of all denominations and none.
Rooted in traditions which have stood the test of time, we are nevertheless flexible enough to meet changing demands and to look to the future. Witness, for example the introduction of full co-education in 1985, the opening of the Pre-Prep and Nursery in 1993, the completion of a £3m Sports and Performing Arts Centre in 2003, the refurbishment of the Sixth Form Centre in 2005, the completion of a £1½m senior boys boarding house in January 2006, and a new music and drama facility which opened in 2008. Further developments are planned for the next few years, the next project being a new sports complex and swimming pool which will be built to mark the school 200th Anniversary in 2012.
The Christian foundation shared by Brontë House and Woodhouse Grove is apparent in the school's concern with individual character and commitment, its programmes of religious, personal and social education and its public contribution through charity work. Pupils are encouraged to be honest, caring and conscientious - like Woodhouse Grove's founders - and ultimately to decide for themselves, with guidance from the school, a moral code by which to live.
The Ideal Location
Some believe a school is best located in the countryside, others that it should be close to a town. Woodhouse Grove has the best of both worlds. Though less than five miles from the centre of Leeds and Bradford and five minutes from Leeds/Bradford Airport, neither is visible - or audible. Screened by trees, the school's 70 acre campus sits in the broad Aire Valley and enjoys a lovely rural setting which belies its convenient urban situation.
The dales and moors lie to the north with Bradford to the south, Manchester to the west and Leeds and York to the east, making cultural visits, sports fixtures and work experience easily accessible.
The M62 links with motorways north and south, and there are railway stations at Bradford and Leeds with regular services to Birmingham, London, the south west, Newcastle and Edinburgh. Traveling is made easy for those living abroad by our proximity to Leeds/Bradford Airport which connects with both Gatwick and Heathrow Airports, while Manchester Airport is just an hour's drive away.
Years 7,8 and 9 comprises the first three year groups of Woodhouse Grove (ages 11,12 and 13) and provides a thoughtful transition from the much smaller world of prep or primary school.
Entry is usually at age 11, but a number of pupils also join at 13 and some at 12. For the next three years pupils follow a common curriculum designed to broaden the subject base and pick up learning momentum before embarking on the GCSE programme.
There is a perceptive realism to the Grove's approach at this stage, with growing emphasis on information and computer technology and modern languages - German and Spanish (in addition to French) - to enable pupils to take advantage of closer ties with Europe.
Maths, English and French are taught in sets, but otherwise pupils are put into mixed ability classes. Each class is overseen by a Tutor who knows the pupils well. Together, the tutors form a team reporting to the Head of Lower School, who has overall pastoral and academic responsibility for pupils with specific difficulties, e.g. dyslexia, there is a specialist learning support unit where qualified staff provide appropriate support and guidance.
The Tutor also encourages participation in activities outside the classroom. In these pivotal years, bridging the gap between primary and secondary school, Woodhouse Grove believes in offering pupils a wide range of experiences to assist their development into caring, confident and capable young people.
Platform for Success
As pupils enter Years 10 and 11 (ages 14 and 15) the foundations have been laid for the main thrust of GCSE work.
With so many pressures and choices ahead, pastoral care and academic guidance are vigilant and responsive to need. Account is taken of the growing maturity of pupils who are encouraged to take increasing responsibility for managing their time and workload. Emphasis is placed on the development of study skills, revision, programmes and examination techniques in preparation for both internal and external public examinations.
These are testing years, thoughtfully provided for at the Grove with a wide range of co-curricular activities, designed to create a more rounded personality.
Pupils learn to think ahead, to prepare not merely for GCSE but also the challenges beyond it. Individually and in discussion with staff they will look for a balance of academic and creative subjects which will make the narrower choice at A-Level easier, and ensure a fruitful match of interest and ability.
A Level Launch Pad
Talent, application, high quality teaching and facilities all play their part in ensuring all-round achievement for students in the Sixth Form.
The achievement comes from the progressive maturity of pupils' ability, skills and sense of responsibility over their school career.
Over twenty AS and A-Level courses are offered in the Sixth Form. Additional breadth of study is provided by our Sixth Form enrichment programme including General Studies. Most pupils go on to university, and there is a long history of representation across the whole spectrum of degree courses, including those at Oxford and Cambridge.
These are the vital statistics of success but they are not simply or solely the product of a book and class-based curriculum. Pupils achieve because they are stretched in different and stimulating ways; by commitments to house and team, by appointment as a school prefect, by clubs, activities or work in the community as well as the paramount academic effort.
In preparation for taking full charge of their lives at university, they are given their own recreational and study area, and greater freedom in dress and use of time.
Advice on the stage beyond school aims to match individual aspirations to real-world requirements. For most pupils, that means a university degree course to maximise their career options and appeal to a prospective employer in today's highly competitive job market.
More than a Game
Woodhouse Grove's commitment to the development of the whole person demands a proper balance of work and play and the school's splendid setting encourages this. The extensive campus ensures there is room for all sporting excellence with pupils participating at national and county levels.
The school's rugby, squash, netball and cricket teams have competed all over the world including Canada, South Africa, Zimbabwe, West Indies, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and the Caribbean. This international sporting contest broadens horizons and establishes lasting friendships.
Games are part of the curriculum and include not just the familiar team games but a much broader spectrum designed to appeal to different personalities, physiques and levels of ability. Athletics, badminton, basketball, rounders, cricket, fencing, golf, gymnastics, hockey, netball, rowing, rugby, squash, soccer, swimming, keep-fit and tennis are just some of the sports available for beginners and experts alike.
The school enjoys special partnerships with, amongst others, Leeds Metropolitan University, Bradford Bulls Rugby League Club and the Lawn Tennis Association. These and other partnerships provide excellent sporting links for our pupils.
Participating in physical activity contributes to morale, confidence, fitness and co-ordination. However it is only one of the many channels for self-expression and development outside the classroom.
During the lunch period, after school, in the evenings and at weekends, the Grove becomes a hive of extra-curricular activity. There are debates to enjoy; orchestras, bands and ensembles to support and join; languages, dance and drama to practice; art, chess, technology and fencing to discover and develop.
Meanwhile, Duke of Edinburgh Award projects, both locally and further afield, provide valuable experience of life beyond school with the opportunities for overseas expeditions.
The Grove has a distinctive voice and sound - the product of the orchestras and bands, choirs and ensembles maintaining its long musical tradition.
Classical, jazz, rock and composition are all offered. The numbers of pupils who seize the opportunity to learn and participate enable the Director of Music to stage a programme of events at every level of the school, and promote a repertoire from informal recital concerts and instrumental evenings to full choral and orchestral concerts. Orchestra days and festivals are held involving schools from the wider community.
Art too is hugely popular, among hobbyists as much as specialists, with splendid facilities for all who may be interested and exhibition opportunities around the school.
The school has an excellent reputation for the quality of its drama. Productions extend across the whole range of comedy, tragedy, classical, modern and musical. Dramatic talents are supported by technical ones, developing ambitious sets, lighting and sound effects. Pupils from the Grove have been successful in their application to the National Youth Theatre and a number of former pupils enjoy successful careers in the Arts.
Public speaking and debating are other areas where pupils' talents can readily be seen. Encouragement is given to those whose experience is in its infancy as well as those whose successes at the lectern are renowned. Competitions, both within school and in the wider community, help foster oratory skills - so useful in many walks of life.
Home from Home
Founded as a boarding school, Woodhouse Grove is now mainly a day school but still provides accommodation for 120 boarders in three houses (senior boys, senior girls, mixed junior). A new Senior boy's boarding house was completed in January 2006. Our boarders keep the school alive seven days a week, and provide a strong nucleus for its clubs and activities. Arrangements are flexible: full, weekly and temporary boarding are all available to suit different needs and circumstances. Transfer from day to boarding is easy and occurs frequently.
Our day pupils benefit from the wide range of activities of a boarding environment, whilst our boarders benefit from daily contact with the local community. This broad social and cultural mix ensures that the school has a national and global outlook which stretches well beyond the confines of local experience.
Day pupils are encouraged to make good use of the extended day which is a natural feature of a boarding school. They may arrive for breakfast and remain in school until 6.00p.m., or later. After lessons finish there is a wide range of activities available. In addition, homework - or 'prep' - can be done in school, supervised by staff, and this is followed by tea.
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