Sydney Russell is a special place and staff and students alike are extremely proud of what we have created together over the years and continue to build as team. Our motto ‘Together Everyone Achieves More’ (TEAM) is about how we work together and support each other to unlock the potential of every child, challenge expectations and level the playing field to activate social mobility.
Our aims can be summed up in three words: Currency, Character and Culture. We want our young people to leave us with the qualifications that they need to succeed in later life. We want them to flourish as lifelong learners and through a range of enrichment opportunities be inspired and grow in confidence to achieve their aspirations. These three words sum up the shared values that underpin every decision made and every policy implemented. At the heart of our success lies the skills and talents of our staff and their enthusiasm for their craft. At Sydney Russell we look to recruit and retain the very best staff who live our ethos each day. We recognise how much our staff give above and beyond – leading and supporting school performances, residential trips, charity days, sports fixtures, enrichment and revision sessions, all of which our students benefit greatly from.
Unlocking the potential of every child, challenging expectations and levelling the playing field is at the heart of what we do and who we are at the Sydney Russell School. To deliver a rich, ambitious, exciting and carefully crafted curriculum which leads to high academic performance and provides all our pupils with the currency they need to succeed in later life.
To build the cultural capital of our young people by providing diverse experiences often difficult for them to access at home or in the local community. We utilise a wide range of cultural opportunities to inspire our students to be the best they can be and remove barriers so they gain confidence to achieve their aspirations.
To develop the character of our young people by creating opportunities to ensure our pupils flourish as lifelong learners. We create an atmosphere that hums with excitement, vibrancy and purpose, which fosters a love of learning and intellectual curiosity and promotes dignity, integrity, self-discipline and self-esteem.
Our staff model our high expectations and aspirations as they go about their work and their dedication is prized. Our professional development programme for staff is paramount to our success and enables us to achieve a sustainable model of excellence. Despite the difficult financial climate we continue to invest in teacher development. A number of subjects have a weekly lock-in CPDL hour built into their timetable when staff lead professional development of the department with a whole school focus.
The SLT-led learning and teaching forum (all staff working together for 8-10 twilight session per year) ensure teachers collaboratively reflect upon and improve their practice and in addition staff are encouraged to engage in peer observation. As an OLEVI Designated Centre of Excellence, DR ICE is at the core of our work. Effective leadership at all levels has been key to our development. We are firmly committed to ensuring a rich experience for all of our students we have developed an effective whole school approach through a process of openness, communication and shared values for both students and staff. We believe in a model of distributed leadership and empowering all staff to lead within their areas and beyond. We are not afraid to be bold, take risks and make changes. We constantly evaluate what we do to make sure we do it even better next time.
As a team we do recognise the importance of striking a balance between work and play. When making decisions we always consider the impact this will have on staff. We look to remove as many of the mundane chores as possible to allow teachers to focus on the job of teaching. We encourage an active and collegiate staff body with staff sports teams and classes and access to the fitness suite. Everyone is welcome to the Friday chill, bingo and CHEESE (Colleagues Having Educationally Enhanced Social Events)!