Introduction from the Headteacher

Introduction from the Headteacher

/ MeadowheadSchool
“Learning and Achieving Together”
general information

Introduction from the Headteacher

I would like to take this opportunity of offering you a warm welcome to MeadowheadSchool & LanguageCollege. At Meadowhead we see the education of young people as a partnership between teacher, parent and pupil in which each of the ‘partners’ is clear about the contribution that is expected of them. Therefore, we feel it important in the appointment of new staff, that we recruit teachers who share our philosophy.

We believe that learning is at the heart of the school, facilitated by excellent teaching.

Our expectations at Meadowhead are clear and easily understood. We demand a high standard of performance in every aspect of school life: in behaviour and attitude, in effort and attendance, in achievement and commitment and in determination to make the most of individual ability. We care about achievement, whether it is academic, creative or sporting. Above all, however, our concern is to ensure that we provide the right conditions and opportunities for our pupils to do their best!

MeadowheadSchool is a very good school with many outstanding features. That description is not simply one of our making. Four Ofsted Inspection reports described us as such with two consecutive Secretaries of State and the Chief Inspector in his national summary supporting that view.

As a specialistSchool in MFL we have been acknowledged and commended as a Centre of Excellence. We have twice been awarded International Status.

Our new school building opened in January 2007. This fantastic opportunity heralds a new chapter in our history. We introduced a new curriculum model and a new pattern to the school day. We are excited by the opportunities our single-site state of the art new home provides and we expect to go from strength to strength. As a community we are all committed to providing our best educational experience we can offer.

We became a TrustSchool in September 2009 and we have since forged ahead with our innovative plans to provide Post 16 education on our site. We have developed an excellent relationship with SheffieldCollege, the Local Authority and our Business Partners.

We are extremely pleased that though our partnership with SheffieldCollege we started teaching A level courses at Meadowhead in September 2010. Currently we teach 15 different A level courses to 135 students in Year 12 with those number set to rise in the future.

This is an exciting time in education and we are all excited by the prospect of new challenges and successful working partnerships, all for the benefit of children.

Could I, in closing, thank you for your interest in the teaching post that was recently advertised. I look forward to reading your application.

Catherine James


For more detailed information about MeadowheadSchool please visit our website on

MeadowheadSchool & LanguageCollege

This document gives information about MeadowheadSchool for prospective job applicants.

Further information about can be found on our website at

It is our intention to create and maintain the kind of atmosphere in which young people will feel secure enough to develop their abilities, happy enough to take on new challenges and sufficiently stimulated to achieve their full potential. That working atmosphere is built upon high standards and expectations. The school aims to maintain high standards of order, care and teaching and has high expectations of all members of the school community.

Meadowhead Statement of Aims


Meadowhead is a popular and successful school on the southern edge of the city of Sheffield.

which serves, amongst others, the communities of Batemoor, Beauchief, Bradway, Greenhill, Jordanthorpe, Lowedges, Norton and Woodseats

The school was created out of the amalgamation of two schools, Rowlinson and Jordanthorpe, in 1988. It is over-subscribed and currently has over 1700students on roll. It is now an 11-18 mixed comprehensive school, with the reintroduction of Post-16 (A level) teaching in September 2010.

The New Building

In January 2007, under PFI initiative, we moved into a purpose built, single site school designed to meet the needs of the 21st century. All curriculum areas have specialist accommodation in their own wings with well-equipped rooms and offices grouped together. There is a large central courtyard at the heart of the new building with the specialist teaching wings leading off from this. The ICT infrastructure facilitates the increased use and development of ICT throughout the school and all classrooms have interactive whiteboards and multi-media technology.

There are eight curriculum areas:

  • The Modern Foreign Language area has additional facilities related to our LanguageCollege specialism, including two fully equipped language laboratories.
  • Maths, English, Humanities and Science all have fully suited ICT rooms. The Science wing has eleven science laboratories and lecture room.
  • In the Art, Design & Technology area there are facilities for Food Technology, Art, Textiles, 3-D Art including two kilns, photo editing suite, Design & Technology workshops and PECT.
  • In Physical Education there is a full size sports hall, two activity rooms, a fitness suite and extensive playing fields including floodlit Astroturf facilities and multipurpose activity areas.
  • Performing Arts will have music rooms, practice rooms, recording studio, and drama studios linked to the main hall, which has a fixed stage for performances.
  • There is a specially designed Learning Support Centre encompassing learning, behaviour and mentoring. Support takes place in 1:1 and small group situations as well as within the classroom and the support units. There will also be a Learning Resource Centre which will include a library and careers suite.


The curriculum offered is the ‘Meadowhead Signature Curriculum’ which encompasses a broad and balanced curriculum centered on the ‘Every Child Matters agenda.

This will enable all students to access a curriculum which consists of the core subjects of English, Mathematics, Science, Languages, Ethics and Health, Fitness and Well-being with other experiences of Creative/Performing Arts, History/Geography, Technology/ICT being personalised to students’ needs and interests.

Some of the key changes that have now occurred / will occur over the next few years include:

  • From September 2010 onwards, most Year 7 students have started to study two languages in Year 7 for 3-hours a week and then continue in Year 8. Most students will then continue with one language in Year 9 (September 2012 onwards), with some students continuing to study both languages in Year 9 and beyond. This will allow the current excellent work within Languages within the Primary schools to be fully utilised by the students and therefore aid even smoother transition of languages learning.
  • Currently all students participate in 2-hours of PE in Year 7-Year 9 and 1-hour in Year 10-Year 11. This will change to Health, Fitness & Well-Being for all students for 2-hours a week in Year 7-Year 9 and also 2-hours in Year 10 from September 2011 onwards. This will allow all students to gain a nationally recognised qualification for their work in this area as well as enhancing a clearer understanding of how Health, Fitness and Well-Being forms an integral part of the whole person which will ultimately lead to improved life chances, opportunities and greater quality of life.
  • Currently students participate in PSHE for 1-hour a week in Year 8-Year 9 and also 1-hour of Life Issues (PSHE / Citizenship / Religious Studies) in Y10-Y11. Religious Studies is currently experienced in Year 8-Year 9 within the Humanities curriculum for all students. This will be combined into a 2-hour experience of Ethics / Morals for all students from September 2011 onwards in Year 7-Year 10. (Current Year 7 students have started to study Ethics / Morals from September 2010). This will again allow all students to gain a nationally recognised qualification for their work in this area as well enhancing a clearer understanding of Ethics / Morals which are so needed in society today.
  • From September 2011 onwards, Year 10 students will be following the Meadowhead ‘Signature Curriculum’ comprising English, Mathematics, Science, Languages, Ethics and Health, Fitness & Well-Being, with a further two subjects based on their needs and interests. This will allow most students to achieve at least 10 qualifications, giving them plenty of scope for further study / training / employment etc post-16 and beyond.
  • From September 2010 onwards, Triple Science has been incorporated within the core Science time of 4-hours of week in Year 10. This has enabled more students to access the course than before.
  • From September 2012 onwards, some Year 9 students will have the possibility of following an even more personalised curriculum.
  • From September 2010, we have started to delivery Post 15 courses in collaboration with NortonCollege. Further details can be found later on in this document.

Curriculum Structure

All subjects are attached to specific curriculum areas led by a Curriculum Leader, with other posts of responsibility to support this. Each curriculum area has either a technician and/or an assistant to support their administration and/or technical work. All staff are attached to a year group led by a Pastoral Leader; the majority of teachers are Learning Managers.

Teaching and Learning is supported by a large number of non-teaching staff including Faculty Support Assistants, Pastoral Mangers and Cover Supervisors.

Extra Opportunities

Meadowhead is justifiably proud of the opportunities it offers to pupils as extra-curricular activities and is keen to recruit staff who can extend or support this programme. The PE Faculty co-ordinate a whole range of after-school sports and consequently Meadowhead is well known for the quality and extent of its participation in sporting events, competing at all levels of sport with national success. The philosophy is very much “if there’s an event or competition and our pupils could learn from it - let’s enter”.

Equally, the school has a considerable reputation for the quality of its Music and Drama, which find joint expression each year with the July or Christmas School Production - an event which draws upon the energies that occur in a Meadowhead year. There are also talent shows, musical concerts and competitions where pupils get the opportunity to perform.

The school is always keen to encourage additional extra-curricular opportunities. We have a proud record of participation and success in local and national competitions in all curriculum areas. There’s always a place for a member of staff to join the Year 7 residential weekend at Kingswood in Staffordshire!

International Links

As a LanguageCollege we are keen to extend boundaries and widen experiences. Alongside regular visits to Europe we can now include China and Sri Lanka in our itinerary. Staff and pupils gain much from our emphasis on “Internationalism” and global awareness.

Since 2002 we have had eight exchange visits to and from ZonghuaMiddle School in Nanjing, China. We have also have regular exchange visits with WalitharaMuslimCollege in Balapitya, Sri Lanka. This year through the LanguageCollege we also have educational visits to Russia, Germany,France, Spain and Italy.

Care of Pupils

Meadowhead is a big school with hundreds of pupils. The size of the school means that it enjoys good facilities but can also offer lots of opportunities, a wide range of courses, and can employ highly specialised staff. The school's size, however, places a special responsibility upon all staff to ensure that each individual pupil feels important, cared for, and part of the school, which is why pastoral care is integral to the social and academic development of every child. Equally, it is why we put such a great emphasis on the part played by their learning manager, pastoral head and the pastoral manager. Together with the heads of school, these people guide their pupils in all aspects of school in order to make life as smooth and happy as possible, and to ensure that individual students achieve their potential. They also act as links, when necessary, between pupils and outside agencies such as the School Medical Services and Education Welfare Service.

Parents are welcome to contact Learning Managers, Pastoral Heads, Pastoral Managers and Heads of School at any time since we pride ourselves on our close cooperation with home.

This is an outward looking school that has strong links with the community and the world of work. It has a very active and supportive Governing Body as well as a flourishing Home & School Association.

Expectations of Staff

A Meadowhead member of staff is a good professional. Consultations with staff have defined a professional as being:

  • reliable
  • dedicated to the task
  • committed to the development of young people
  • enthusiastic
  • questioning
  • constructively critical,

and one who approaches colleagues, pupils and parents alike with:

  • courtesy
  • respect
  • tact
  • humour
  • high expectations and standards
  • tolerance

A staff collaboration produced the “Meadowhead Good Lesson Guide”, which is used as a template for every lesson and ensures consistency and high standards throughout the curriculum.

All staff are required to attend Faculty, Year Team and Staff Meetings. In addition to these meetings there are cross-curricular meetings in ICT, Pupil Support, Assessment, Teaching and Learning, PSHE, and Learning Management.

The full calendar of meetings and events is published in the July preceding the relevant academic year. Each Friday an electronic version of the Meadowhead Bulletin, which contains the weekly events, agendas, minutes of meetings, information, news, and the occasional idiosyncratic item, is pasted on the school's intranet. Every Wednesday morning there is a Briefing for all staff, updating them on relevant issues within the school.

Increasingly, internal communication and information systems are being transferred to the school's e-mail and intranet.

Opportunities for staff and Continuous Professional Development (CPD)

We are looking to recruit staff who are committed to learning and developing. We were the first secondary school in Sheffield to achieve the Investors in People Award in 1995 and have been successfully re-assessed in 1999, 2004 and 2007. In 2010 we achieved the Investors in People Silver Award, an enhanced standard currently achieved by only 3% of employers.

We undertake to provide all newly appointed staff with a structured induction programme designed to support their initial year at MeadowheadSchool. For all staff, we seek to offer opportunities for continual professional development and are proud of the high proportion of staff that have taken advantage of these initiatives. For example, all members of staff had the opportunity to gain the internationally recognised ECDL ICT qualification. Currently we are supporting staff through NPQH, Leading from the Middle, and Post-Graduate Certificate in Leadership and Management.

Our Headteacher is currently a ‘Local Leader’ and a ‘Professional Partner’ and is undertaking the training for ‘National Leader’ and ‘School Improvement Partner’.

As a large school we have the expertise to offer excellent professional development and guidance for staff at all stages of their career.

We seek to recruit teachers who take their job seriously but themselves rather less so. We want people who will support the school and be good colleagues. As important as all this we look for teachers who enjoy teaching and who genuinely like children.

The Meadowhead Curriculum

The school’s curriculum continues to be developed against the background of new developments, initiatives and improvements. Whilst the basis of the curriculum is therefore determined by statutory requirements, the school has been keen to retain and encourage the trademarks of the Meadowhead Curriculum.

In part this is seen in terms of subject emphasis. The National Curriculum requires pupils to study a foreign language but at Meadowhead most pupils study two in Key Stage 3 and for some time now all pupils have taken at least one language through to KS4. At Meadowhead the curriculum also goes beyond its statutory requirements in the area of Art, Design & Technology and Physical Education/Performing Arts where there is a strong emphasis upon 3-D Studies, Textiles and Drama as well as Art and Music. Physical Education is also given particular prominence. All pupils will also have a Learning Management lesson.

The Meadowhead Signature Curriculum reveals its appropriateness to the individual pupil. In order to make the curriculum appropriate to the pupil, the school is committed to a personalised pathway from Year 9 onwards. The school is keen to ensure that all pupils have access to the curriculum but equally concerned to insist upon the pursuit of academic excellence where pupils have the potential. The consequence of this is that all pupils are encouraged to succeed. The school has a very high rate of pupils achieving GCSE education, most pupils achieving ten GCSE grades.

Key Stage 3

All pupils in Years 7 and 8 study:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Modern Language
  • History
  • Information Technology
  • Geography
  • Religious Education
  • Art, Design & Technology
  • Physical Education/Performing Arts
  • PSHE

MATHEMATICS – This follows the National Numeracy Strategy at an appropriate level for each pupil

Science - This follows the QCA scheme of work supported by Exploring Science Materials.

Modern Languages - From Year 7 pupils follow a course in French, German or Spanish and most students also take a second language.

History, Geography, RE - Year 7 pupils are taught a Humanities course involving equal elements of History, Geography and RE. The subjects are then taught separately in Years 8 and 9. In Y7 we have developed and Ethics course to cover the RE, PSHE and Citizenship elements of the curriculum.

ARt, design & Technology - Years 7 to 9 will follow a course devised to meet the requirements of the National Curriculum, involving elements of Design & Technology, Food Technology, Textiles Technology, Art, 3-D Studies and Textile Crafts