Principal's Message - A Warm Welcome
It gives me very great pleasure to welcome you to the Thorns Community College website. I’ve been Principal at Thorns now since January 2011 and in a very short space of time I’ve discovered what a welcoming and friendly place it is. I hope you will find the website helpful and constructive and if it fails to answer your questions then please don’t hesitate to contact the college directly.
Thorns is a place where “Learning Comes First,” and it is always at the top of our agenda. Our vision statement clearly recognises that we are all learners on a lifelong journey through education and that includes every member of staff as well as our students. We have worked hard to become the school of choice for parents and students in the local area and our student numbers are extremely healthy.
In the last 2 years Thorns has been on a tremendous journey into special measures in March 2011 and then out, well ahead of schedule, after just 4 monitoring visits, in December 2012. This outstanding achievement has been driven by some exceptionally hard work and total dedication from all the stakeholders. For example, examination grades have improved 3 years running. In 2012 we bucked the national trend, achieving our best ever results and 2013 already promises to be another record year. The future is now looking very bright indeed following December’s very positive report, which is available to read here on the website.
However, education at Thorns is about so much more than results. We offer a broad and balanced curriculum, which ensures that all our students not only achieve in the key core subjects but also experience success in a wide range of other areas too. As a Specialist Performing Arts College we have a strong tradition in delivering excellence in Drama, Music and Dance and this is evidenced by our annual productions, dance shows and concerts. Our sports facilities are some of the best in the Borough and we value all sporting endeavours. I firmly believe that many of life’s most important lessons are learnt outside of the classroom and this philosophy is supported in all our learning.
Since my arrival we have invested heavily, not only in improving the quality of teaching and learning, but also in the student environment. With well above average attendance our students will be the first to tell you how much they enjoy coming to Thorns and how much the college is improving. Our extensive site was recently enhanced by the completion of the Thorns Community Learning Village (TCLV) project when we were joined on campus by Old Park Special School, bringing a further dimension to learning in the community.
I’m very optimistic about the future of Thorns and I’m really looking forward to continuing the journey we’ve embarked upon. A number of other significant changes and improvements are underway and the staff have been superb in embracing this opportunity to make Thorns an outstanding provider of education.