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Ashton Park Secondary School
Blackmoors Lane, BS3 2JL, UK Ashton
+44 (0)117 377 2777

Welcome to Ashton Park School

Ashton Park School is a popular and successful comprehensive school in Bristol.

Click here to be taken to the school's expedition site. (This will open in a new window).

Kenya Expedition


Pupils entering from primary school

Pupils applying to enter the school at the end of primary education will do so via the LEA who will allocate places on the School's behalf using the following ranked criteria:

Where there are more applications than places available at a Community or Controlled School, allocations will involve only those applications received by an agreed date at the end of October each year. Applications received after this date may be disadvantaged, as available places at the preferred school may have already been allocated.

Please Note: For Bristol LEA controlled schools priority is not given to first preferences. We aim to meet the highest preference possible for every applicant by applying the published over-subscription criteria equally to all applications for a school.

1) Special Educational Needs reasons and ‘Looked After Children’

The particular placement must be recommended by the LEA’s professional advisers.

· Special Educational Needs reasons must be accepted as essential by the LEA as part of the assessment of special educational needs under the 1996 Education Act, and the school is named as first preference by the parent/carer.

· Looked After Children’ are children who are in the care or interim care of a local authority pursuant to S31 and 38 of the Children Act 1989, or children who are accommodated by a local authority pursuant to S20 of the Children Act 1989.

2) Siblings

Where there are siblings of statutory school age in attendance at the preferred school and who will still be there in September 2005.

· Children are siblings if they are half, full or adoptive brother or sister or if they are children of the same household.

· Pupils will not be considered as a sibling link where the older child is attending a school 6th form in the year of entry.

3) Geography

i) Children living within the school’s designated area of first priority.

ii) Children living within the school’s joint or consortium area.

iii) Children living closest to the school.

Where there are more applications than there are places remaining within a particular category, distance from home to school will be used as a tie-break. When further distance to qualify for a place relates to a household containing two or more children for whom applications are being made (eg. Twins) the place will be offered to one child. The remaining child will then be considered under the sibling criterion if further places become available. Distances will be measured in a direct line from the home address to the school using a computerised mapping system.

You should be aware that it is not always possible to allocate places to all children who live within a school’s area of first priority and/or all children living within the school’s joint or consortium area who require places.

The home address is where the child spends the majority of time and is living with the person who has parental responsibility and is the main carer as set out in the Children Act 1989 (we may require documentary evidence). If a child regularly lives at more than one address the LEA will have to reach a conclusion about which should be counted as the main address when allocating places. This will normally be the address where Child Benefit is paid and where the child is registered with a doctor.

Should the School have more applications than places available the LEA appeals procedure would operate and the School would be advised which additional pupils, if any, they must accept.

· Ashton Park School seeks to offer all pupils the opportunity to achieve their full potential in a safe and secure learning environment.

· All pupils joining Ashton Park School will be expected to respect the rights of other pupils to learn to go about their business without hindrance.

· The Governors of the School expect that parents and guardians of pupils joining Ashton Park School will work with the School to support the School's discipline code and support the School's sanctions as outlined in the Discipline Policy.

· The Governors, Staff, Parents and Pupils are expected to work towards maintaining the standards set out in our 'School Charter'. All parties are asked to sign this on entry to the School.

· In circumstances relating to exclusion from previous school it may be necessary for parents and pupils to meet with a panel of Governors before acceptance of admission.

Pupils entering during secondary education

Parents applying to admit their child during their secondary education will be informed of the procedure below. All conditions stated above necessarily also apply.

1) Talk to appropriate Head of Year to determine the reason for transfer and obtain the name of the current school.

2) Head of Year contacts the current school for information. The current school will have at this stage, completed an LEA form (wanderers) which will be passed onto us. An interview will only be set up if this form has been received by our school.

3) Head of Year decides either to set up an interview (for parents and child) or discuss with the Deputy Head (Pastoral) to determine the next move.

4) If the Head of Year decides to interview and has no reservations then a start date is given. If the Head of Year interviews and has concerns then the parent is told that they will need to see the Deputy Head (Pastoral) at another appointment before any decision can be made.

5) Once the pupil has been admitted and placed on roll the Head of Year must arrange for his/her records to be sent from the previous school, including National Curriculum test results and pastoral/medical data. Parents should complete entry forms and sign our 'Code of Conduct'. The Head of Year should arrange for the pupil to undertake work set by Faculties to place them in appropriate groups as soon as possible. Finally, they should introduce them to their tutor and inform all other staff of the pupils name, tutor group and teaching sets.

Where we are approached by an LEA Officer or a senior member of staff in another school to consider a ‘managed transfer’ then the agreed LEA procedure must take place.

If the school is approached to admit a ‘Hard to Place Pupil’ (as defined by the LEA) or a permanently excluded pupil from another school then the agreed LEA procedures and criteria must be applied, including a recognition of the limit of places that can be accepted into any school over any given period. If Ashton Park agrees to consider admitting a ‘managed transfer’, ‘hard to place’ or ‘permanently excluded’ pupil then a meeting will be set up with the Headteacher, Deputy Headteacher and Head of Year and the LEA Officer, Parents and Pupil. The points 4 and 5 above apply.

Ashton Park School seeks to offer a place to all pupils who apply to join, subject to the restrictions outlined above. All children are equally valued at Ashton Park School.


Pupils are expected to attend school regularly and should be absent only for illness or other genuine reasons.

If a pupil is unable to attend school, parents are asked to notify the office, by telephone, on the first day of absence. On returning to school, the pupil should give the tutor a letter from their parent explaining the reason for the absence. This letter is needed for the records: unexplained absence will be investigated by the Education Welfare Officer.

We employ a telephone call centre called "Truancy Call" who ring parents on first day of absence if we have not had prior notice of your childs' absence.
Parents whose children are either regularly late for school (after 9.05AM or 1.50PM) or attendance falls below 80% during any rolling 10 week period will incur a £50 fine from the education welfare service. A warning letter is sent to parents if their child is getting close to this level.
Parents whose children regularly do not attend school will be taken to court by the education welfare service with a maximum fine of £2500 per parent. We would hope a meeting with parents prior to this point would address any issues and ensure that pupils return to full time education.

Parents are urged not to take their children on holiday during term time however, if this proves unavoidable they must complete an official holiday form, which is obtainable from their child's Head of Year. This holiday should be for a maximum of two weeks.

Attendance Statistics 2004/2005
These are the statistics to be published by the DFE

Total number of pupils on roll of compulsory school age 1163
Percentage of pupil sessions (half days) missed through authorised absence 7.6%
Percentage of pupil sessions (half days) missed through unauthorised absence 1.1%
Length of taught week (Lesson Time) 25.0 hrs

Ashton Park School Association

Parents are a much-needed resource and we would welcome as many new volunteers as possible to exchange ideas and to help raise funds. We also need helpers to serve refreshments at all Parents Evenings and major school events. It is not hard work and we usually have a bit of fun too!

If you can spare the occasional evening to support the staff and children it would be much appreciated.

For further details either contact Mr Gardner, speak to any other member of the PTA at the next school event or contact me on 0117 9492521.

Hilary Garnham

Chair of the PTA

Aims of the PTA

1. To raise funds to support Extra Curricular Activities for the students and to buy extra equipment for many Departments. Over the past years we have raised over £8,000 to help the students.

2. To provide a forum for parents to meet and socialise with other parents and school staff.

3. Liaison between parents and the school – we are vary appreciative that Mr Gardner always attends our meetings and updates us of the latest developments in school. We also have the opportunity to speak informally with the school staff at school events.


Travel to school - school buses

These are the services which come directly into the School grounds at the start and end of the school day:

430 Buses start from Totterdown (Wells Road) and come via St Johns Lane (Engineers Arms) non-stop to School.

The 222 Blue South Gloucestershire bus starts from Wells Road/St John's Lane/Broadwalk starts at St John's Lane Clinic in the mornings, goes up the Wells Road and past the Broadwalk shops and on towards Knowle Health Clinic, Hartcliffe, Bedminster Down and to School. This allows us to collect Sixth Form Students from Hartcliffe, Withywood and Bedminster Down School.

431 Starts at St Johns Lane (The Malago) and follows the same route as the 430, but includes Bedminster (London Inn / Parson Street) and Ashton Vale (Langley Crescent).

432 Buses start from Bedminster Road (Post Office) and come via Winterstoke Road to School.

For all other scheduled services, there is a bus stop at the end of Blackmoor's Lane which is used by all town and country services to and from Bristol to Portishead, etc.

Travel to school - cycles

Pupils wishing to cycle to school must obtain a cycle permit from the Head of Year. We recommened all pupils who cycle wear a cycle helmet for protection.

Cycles should be kept safe and roadworthy.

We strongly recommend that all pupils know the Highway Code and have some training in cycling proficiency.

As with other valuables, the school is not responsible for the security of the machine and pupils are told to padlock their cycles. We provide a bike shed which is locked during the school day. Prefects are on duty for a few minutes at the beginning and end of the school day in the bike sheds to monitor behavior.


Times of the school day

The day starts at 8.40am. When the first bell rings, pupils should go to their Tutor Rooms; arrival in the classrooms after 8.45am will mean that the pupil is marked in the register as late. Arrival after 9.05 will be marked as absent for the morning session unless they have travelled on the school bus.

Punctuality is important in school, as it is in employment and, therefore, we request parents to help us by ensuring that their child leaves home in good time to arrive before the 8.40am bell.

Three late marks in a week, without good reason, will result in a letter home informing the parents of a detention for lack of punctuality.

Lessons continue until 12.45pm when there is a break for lunch.
Pupils must have registered by 1.50PM in the afternoon or they will be marked as absent for the afternoon session.

Timetable for the day

8.40: Early Bell
8.45 - 9.05: Registration and Assembly
9.05 - 9.55: P2 Lesson
9.55 - 10.45: P3 Lesson

10.45 - 11.05: Break

11.05 - 11.55: P4 Lesson
11.55 - 12.45: P5 Lesson

12.45 - 1.45: Lunchtime

1.45 - 1.50: Registration
1.50 - 2.40: P7 Lesson
2.40 - 3.30: P8 Lesson

The education werlfare service will be monitoring pupils absence rate from school (this individules lateness after 9.45AM to 1.50PM). If a pupil has 20 non attendance durying any ten week rolling period (100 sessions) then they will be impose a £50 fine on parents. A warning letter will be sent if your child if to close to this deadline.


As with other school rules we rely on common sense in establishing a code of school dress. We expect pupils to take pride in their appearance and to recognise that extremes of fashion are not practical for work or school.

School Uniform.

The uniform is now available from either

IKON Schools, 190 Henleaze Road, Henleaze, Bristol, BS9 4NE

Telephone: 0117 962011

Web Order:

Or:- Direct from Manufacturer Trutex Direct Password Prompt LEA00525SC

Telephone Orders 0870 600 1033



White polo shirt with house coloured Ashton Park logo – Available from IKON or Trutex

Navy Blue ¼ zip fleece with house coloured Ashton Park logo – Available from IKON only

Black trousers

Black shoes

PE Kit

Navy blue self stripe shorts with Sports college logo – Available from IKON or Trutex

House coloured polo shirt with Ashton Park logo – Available from IKON or Trutex

Reversible rugby shirt. House colour/Gold – Available from IKON only

Navy blue sports socks – Available from IKON or Trutex

Optional navy tracksuit with Ashton Park logo – Available from IKON or Trutex



White polo shirt with house coloured Ashton Park logo – Available from IKON or Trutex

Navy Blue ¼ zip fleece with house coloured Ashton Park logo – Available from IKON only

Black trousers/skirt

Black shoes

PE Kit

Navy blue self stripe shorts with Sports college logo – Available from IKON or Trutex

House coloured polo shirt with Ashton Park logo – Available from IKON or Trutex

Navy blue sports socks – Available from IKON or Trutex

Optional navy/white hockey shirt with Sports College logo – Available from IKON or Trutex

Optional navy tracksuit with Ashton Park logo – Available from IKON or Trutex

Children should not wear jewelry to school.
Those who have had their ears pierced are to wear studs only, hanging earrings, nose and eyebrow studs are not suitable to wear to school and can be dangerous.

Pupils MUST keep their money and valuables on their person and are discouraged from bringing large sums of money and valuables to school as the school cannot accept responsibility for their loss.
Mobile phones are allowed in school but must be switched off during lessons.

Naturally the purpose of your son's/daughter's time at Ashton Park is to receive a good education in a pleasant cooperative environment. We hope that you will join us in implementing these rules so that we do not waste time in disputes on such matters.

Parents are urged to label all clothing to make recognition easy. If pupils lose their possessions, we will make a genuine effort to locate them. However, we cannot replace them. It is important pupils learn to take responsibility for their own possessions.

PE Kit

1 pair shorts, Navy Blue *
1 pair shorts, White Socks, Yellow *
Trainers/Daps, Black/White
Football Boots, Black
Shin Guards
Athletics vest, House colour*
Rugby Shirt, House colour*
Bag for equipment

Shorts or Games Skirt, Navy/Blue *
Knickers, Navy
Plain round necked T-shirt, White
Socks, Yellow
Trainers/Daps, Black/White
Football Boots, Black
Shin Guards
Rugby Shirt, House colour*
Bag for equipment

*Available from school


School Curriculum

We aim to give our pupils as a sound, broad balanced education which allows them to develop their potential to the full and prepare them for life in society when they leave.

Pupils follow a curriculum which takes account of the requirements of the National Curriculum as it comes into effect. The National Curriculum sees education as a continuous process from infant to further education rather than as separate stages. The years that children spend in Ashton Park School are, therefore, now referred to as Years 7-13.

Our Learning Support Department supports those pupils who experience learning and/or behaviour difficulties. In-class Support is provided and few children are also withdrawn from lessons to enable them to have more specific help.

Curriculum Years 7-9

All pupils follow a common curriculum in these years, with specific subjects as indicated below:

Year 7

The curriculum in Year 7 is designed to ease the transition from Primary to Secondary as we realise that this change can be a frightening one for many children. The subjects taught are: Humanities Science Art Technology French Drama Physical Education Information Technology Mathematics Music Personal & Social Studies English Humanities is an integrated course which covers History, Geography and Religious Studies. Humanities is taught by the same member of staff so that children will have one teacher for at least 6 lessons a week. During Year 7 most of the pupil's education is arranged in mixed ability groupings based on the Tutor Group. The exception to this is Mathematics, Technology, PE and English where pupils are grouped according to ability.

Year 8

Now that the pupils have settled into secondary school they are set in groups for all subjects by their ability. This means that a pupil could be in set 2 for Mathematics, 3 for English, 4 for Science etc. At least once a term each subject reviews each pupils performance and considers whether a move to a different set for this one subject would be desirable. The curriculum stays nearly the same as year 7 except Humanities is taught separately as History, Geography and Religious Studies. Pupils in the top two sets study French and German whilst other pupils do additional English.

Year 9

Year 9 follows a similar arrangement and range of subjects as in year 8. At the end of this year National Tests are sat by all pupils to see how well they are progressing. The results of these tests are sent to all year 9 parents together with the teachers assessment of class work and the national comparisons.

Curriculum Years 10 and 11

The curriculum in Years 10 and 11 is designed to offer pupils a broad balanced and relevant range of educational experiences and opportunities. It enables pupils to develop the necessary skills, processes, attitudes and knowledge to become responsible and productive members of today's society. This applies equally to those who move who move out into the world of work at the end of Year 11 as to those on to further or higher education.

The curriculum is made up of a number of compulsory or core courses which take up approximately 80% of the time, and this is supplemented by a series of optional or negotiated courses which occupy the remaining 20%.

Both areas contain courses which Lead to GCSE examinations and most of these courses are taught for 3 or 4 lessons each week.

Core Curriculum

The core consists of:

Personal and Social Studies
Physical Education
Information Technology

Nearly all pupils will study the following subjects to GCSE examination Level:

English Language
English Literature or Media Studies
French or German


Pupils may choose two subjects to study to GCSE from the list below:

Art and Design
Business Studies
Science (Double)
German History
Religious Studies
Vocational Studies

This means that the majority of pupils will be expected to study nine subjects to GCSE standard.

A small number of pupils, for whom nine GCSEs is inappropriate, will be able to opt for 'Vocational Studies' (at South Bristol College).

Ashton Park School is a Comprehensive School. As such we welcome pupils from all groups from within our community. By sharing our views and perspectives of personal, social, cultural and spiritual issues we believe we grow in understanding and tolerance.

Educational and vocational guidance

Great importance is attached to providing a fully comprehensive system of guidance for all students in the School.

The focal point is the Careers/Social Education Course for all pupils in Year 10 and 11. The aim is to give students a better understanding of the world of work, and of Further and Higher Education, the society in which they live, and the decisions which they will need to make.

The importance of self-assessment, personal relationships and team work is emphasised. In Year 9 there is a detailed programme of guidance prior to the important step of choosing the course leading to external examinations.

Subsequently, students are encouraged to seek personal guidance of all aspects of their educational and career objectives. Emphasis is laid upon individual guidance and the Careers staff of the school, together with Careers Officers, seek to ensure that students are fully aware of the academic and personal skills required in occupations at all levels.

There is a very well stocked Careers Library which students are encouraged to use on a regular basis, and up to date information about employment, training schemes and College courses is also available on computer.

The Careers programmes include a series of talks by employers and college representatives, visits to colleges and places of employment for students and staff, and Work Experience placements.

In addition, the School has, on a number of occasions, acted as hosts to groups of employers' representatives. All staff are encouraged to keep abreast of developments in further education, employment and allied training, particularly in their own specialist field.

Health and sex education

Health and sex education form part of the curriculum for all pupils in the School.

Elements of Health and Sex Education are dealt with in the PSHE Programme as well as in a number of subjects, notably Science and Technology. In each case they are taught in the context of the course as a whole, and the emphasis differs according to the subject concerned.


All pupils follow a programme of PSHE (Personal Social and Health Education) throughout the year.

The topics are planned to enhance the development of knowledge, understanding, attitudes and behaviour, particularly in relation to:

  • oneself and others
  • social and moral issues
  • social institutions and organisation

Pupils of exceptional ability

Staff are aware of pupils who have exceptional ability in their subject and provide materials and resources to meet these needs.

In addition, our House Competitions challenges creative responses to academic problems periodically throughout the year (debating, poetry, problem solving etc as well as sporting, dance, and drama).

The Mathematics Department arrange for our most able pupils to attend Master Classes at the University of Bristol on Saturday mornings.

Ashton Park was selected to take part in a Bristol City Council Project called 'Flying High' two years ago. Pupils in years 10 and 11 were selected because of their overall ability to take part in a series of extension activities in a range of subjects such as Maths, Science, Modem Languages, Thinking Skills etc. This was so successful that over the next few years we intend to extend this across the whole school and two senior colleagues have been given the responsibility to develop this work with Faculties. This should ensure that all Gifted and Talented children are stretched in a wide range of specialisms.

Special educational needs

During the past two years our SEN co-ordinator has restructured our provision for children who experience specific learning or behaviour difficulties. In addition the school provides in-class support and small group/individual withdrawal for pupils who do not have a full statement.

Each faculty is required to spend 10% of the capitation on SEN materials to make sure we have appropriate resources to meet the everyday needs of our least able pupils. The school also gives the SEN co-ordinator funds each year to buy resources to support this departments work.

The school has recently updated its SEN Policy. This covers how we identify, monitor, support and keep records on pupils who receive SEN support. Staff have also had a talk during an inservice day on their role in providing appropriate learning within their classroom by our Educational Psychologist Mr Jack Humphreys.

The SEN co-ordinator has developed very strong links with primary feeder schools and she administers reading and spelling tests on all new pupils to ensure we identify those in greatest need immediately.

The school draws on the experience of Bristol City Council Central Staff to counsel pupils who have specific needs and to draw up Personal Support Plans. We also buy in the expertise of a Drama Therapist and trained Counsellor each week to support our pupils needs.

The school opened a 'Social Skills base' in September 1999 staffed by an experienced SEN teacher and an LSA to teach pupils strategies and support them when they have problems. This has proved to be a source of comfort and support to many pupils.


Ashton Park School is proud of its record of sporting successes at all levels of competition. This success is built on a very high quality of teaching during our Physical Education lessons.

Our aims are:

  • to encourage pupils to value physical exercise for health reasons. to offer pupils a wide variety of sports to try.
  • to teach pupils to demonstrate personal qualities such as initiative, leadership, teamwork and responsibility. to develop individual personal skills for a range of sports regardless of the level of achievement.
  • to encourage excellence through representative sport at inter-house and inter-school levels.
  • to recognise excellence,
  • to inspire others, in our Hall of Fame

Ashton Park School has two Gymnasiums, a fitness room, five tennis courts, five netball courts, a basketball court and extensive pitches for football, rugby, hockey, cricket and an athletics track.

Apart from lesson time sport is played each lunch hour for enjoyment and to represent tutor groups and houses in regular competition. After school matches against other schools are a regular feature so are training sessions. We set high standards for children of all abilities and whilst recognising we cannot all be stars we expect everyone to do their best and adopt a positive attitude towards their own health.

School teams include rugby, football, basketball, cricket, athletics, hockey, netball and cross-country. We have many County Champions and pupils who take part in National Tournaments. Our school regularly wins tournaments across many sports against local schools.

We are very proud of the fact that both Gareth Chilcott and David Hilton started their rugby careers at Ashton Park School. We recommend a walk down our 'Hall of Fame', to see some of the achievements individuals and teams have made.

Work experience

All pupils in year 10 at school have the opportunity to spend time on work experience with a local employer or training organisation.

Much thought is given to the selection of suitable placements, and their subsequent review and evaluation in the light of the individual's educational, training and development needs.

Pupils return to school to follow-up the experience in a number of subject areas, drawing on the experiences and sharing them with others.

Post 16 Introduction

Following the review of Post 16 education in Bristol and the establishment of the Bristol Post 16 Campus, Ashton Park Sixth Form is now known as…

“The South West Bristol Post 16 Centre”

Our Centre offers vocational and academic courses for all students within the South West Bristol Area Post 16 partnership, which comprises Ashton Park, Bedminster Down, Hartcliffe, Withywood and Portway schools. If you know of anyone who is still unsure about their options Post 16 or would like a prospectus, please contact Mr Coates or Mr Lind on 0117 3772777 or email us at

Basic course information can be found here. For more information you soon be able to log on to our new post 16 website which can be found at

Post 16 Courses

Every year we try to match the courses we offer to the subjects students want to study. For the academic year 2004/5, our Post 16 students will be able to choose subjects to study from a list of 24 A' levels and 5 Vocational A Levels, 4 GNVQ (Intermediate), 4 GNVQ (Advanced), 3 NVQ and 6 other intermediate level courses.

AS well as these subjects, students also learn how to be effective Post 16 students in Study Skills in Year 12 and then go on to study General Studies AS Level in Year 13 as part of their wider enrichment, which includes organised sporting activities on Wednesday afternoons.

In addition pupils some students choose to re-sit Mathematics and English GCSE to improve their grades.

The courses currently being taught are:

AS and A Levels




Business Studies


Critical Thinking (AS only)

D & T Food

D & T Production

Drama/Theatre Studies

English Literature


General Studies







Media Studies


Music Technology


Sports Studies



Vocational A Levels


Art and Design

Health and Social Care

Leisure and Recreation

Performing Arts

Travel and Tourism





Health and Social Care


Leisure and Tourism




Customer Service


Sport and Recreation


Other Intermediate Level Courses


BTEC First Diploma in Sport

BTEC First Diploma in Public Service

BTEC Introductory Diploma in IT at Work

CACHE Certificate in Child Care and Education

VGCSE Engineering (double award)

VGCSE Applied Art and Design





Art and Design



Study Skills




Physical Education



Extra curricular activities

The school offers a wide choice of extra curricular activities which may vary from time to time but currently include those listed below:

Drama and Music leading to the staging of productions during the academic year.

All major games are played between House groups and Tutor groups and against other schools from Year 7 upwards. There is also the opportunity, after school and in lunch times, to take part in Gymnastics, Badminton, Trampolining, Volley Ball, Softball, Hockey, Netball, Basketball and Fitness Training.

At various weekends throughout the year all kinds of outdoor activities are organised, including Youth Hostelling, mini Raleigh exercises, Outward Bound, etc.

Many school visits take place during each year, both educational and recreational in the British Isles and on the Continent. These usually include a visit to a Ski resort, and trips to France and Germany. Pupils also have the opportunity to take part in the Bristol/Bordeaux or Bristol/Hanover exchanges.

The library is open regularly at lunch times and after school. Pupils are encouraged to borrow books. There is also a school Bookshop where pupils can buy their own books from a range on sale.

There is a thriving Computer Club which enables interested pupils to have additional 'hands on' experience of our computer network during lunch hours.


The School sees homework as important in helping pupils acquire the skill of working alone and solving problems for themselves.

Homework will involve completing or following on from work done in class. It is hoped to develop in this way organised patterns of thought and effective use of time.

Homework, which is appropriate for the course being studied, takes account of the age and ability of the pupils. The amount of homework children are expected to do will, therefore, vary from year to year and from subject to subject.

As a rough guide, lower school pupils would expect to receive about half an hour's homework per subject per week. The school policy which details this more fully is issued to parents each September.

All homework is recorded in the pupil's personal planner and parents and tutors sign this regularly to monitor the amount of homework set and the fact that the pupil has completed it.


School Aims

'Achieving beyond expectations' means that our school aims to:

  • encourage pupils to take responsibility for their own learning.
  • challenge pupils of all abilities and strive to achieve their full potential.
  • involve parents in their children's learning.
  • develop an ethos where striving for excellence is a natural part of our culture.
  • provide resources that support the individual learning needs of our pupils.
  • reward pupils when effort or attainment exceeds our expectations.
  • take full advantage of the school's beautiful surroundings throughout our curriculum.
  • encourage every pupil to play an active part in our vast extra curricular activities available at lunch times and after school.
  • ensure that our pupils aspire to meaningful, fulfilling lives.
  • encourage every pupil to achieve their best at all times. Second best is not good enough at Ashton Park School.
  • create a happy, secure, caring environment where politeness, honesty, loyalty and integrity are valued.
  • help pupils develop personal moral value, respect for religious values and an understanding of the needs and rights of individuals
  • instil in pupils their role as ambassadors of our school in the community so that they develop a sense of their own worth, belonging and pride in attending Ashton Park School

Activities / School Visits

Pupils can try new, and exciting activities.

Visits abroad and camping in Devon are just two of the activities offered, during our Activities Week.

In addition, there is an extensive range of courses, many off site, which the school funds from its budget.

 Visits to Normandy, Paris and Germany are organised by the Modern Language Department, ski trips and sports tours through the PE Department, enabling students to experience other languages and cultures.

Charging and Remission Policy

The governors have a detailed policy which can be obtained by applying to the Headteacher.

The principles rest on the request to parents to make a voluntary contribution to school visits but the school will make reductions of up to 50% in certain circumstances to parents on Income Support.

Complaints Procedure

If you have any complaints or worries about your child's life at Ashton Park please contact us. We aim to sort the problem out immediately.

In the unlikely event of you still not being satisfied, then we will use the formal procedure via the Governors and Local Education Authority. The details of this are available from the Headteacher.

The Chair of Governors may be contacted via the school.

Parents are able to see copies of all government circulars and acts by asking the Headteacher to make these available to them.

Discipline Policy

The schooI has a traditional approach to conduct, relationships and values. Self discipline and self esteem are fostered and we stress two basic principles that pupils should work to the best of their ability and that they should behave in a considerate and thoughtful manner.

The School adopts a policy of firmness and fairness in its control of pupils. School rules are kept to the minimum necessary to maintain an orderly and purposeful atmosphere. School rules are displayed in all tutor rooms and are available to parents on request.

Self-discipline is the best kind of discipline, which we try to make our pupils realise. Bad behaviour has to be discouraged and pupils who go astray may be kept behind for a maximum of 10 minutes at the end of the day without prior warning to parents. If there is more persistent infringement pupils are given at least 24 hours' notice of a longer detention and a letter will be posted home explaining the reason for the length of their detention.

The School operates a 'Remove Room' where pupils are sent if they act in a way that stops others from learning. Pupils who are placed in this room work in isolation, have no morning break and have only 30 minutes for lunch. By operating this system we can assure parents that quality learning is available to all pupils every lesson.

Depending on the nature and severity of the offence, breaches of discipline may also result in reprimands, a detention, extra work or exclusion, in accordance with the Local Education Authority system.

In all matters of discipline, except the most minor instances, parents are informed, as we believe that parental involvement and interest are important factors in the way their child responds to school.


The School Library is open at lunch times and after school. Pupils are encouraged to borrow books and to use the library for research to support their studies.

There is also a school bookshop where pupils can buy their own books from the range available.

Our Careers Officer is also based in the library providing an extensive range of information for students making decisions on their future.

Pastoral care

All schools say they are caring. We believe our school goes beyond this.

Not only do we have tutors and Head of Year, who daily look after the same small group of pupils, but we involve older pupils in supporting children in Years 7 and 8. This engenders a real caring and family atmosphere that allows new pupils to feel welcome right from the start.

In any large school it is necessary to set up a system which breaks the school down into small units to ensure that each child can be known as an individual who will have regular daily contact with one member of staff. Ashton Park operates a Year system with the tutor group providing the daily personal contact for pupils and the tutor being the initial reference point for parents. If serious problems of any sort arise, they will be dealt with by a Head of Year who may need to refer the problems to the Deputy Head.

Tutorial System

The Tutorial System occupies a vital place in the organisation of the school. On entering the school each child is assigned to a Tutor Group and becomes a member of one of the three Houses so that they can participate in House activities such as games and athletics.

In our current year 7 there are approximately 200 pupils under the direction of our Head of Year. Each tutor group consists of about 28 children of all ranges of ability. They meet their tutor, each morning for 20 minutes to take the register and follow a tutorial programme, which includes Assembly. In the afternoons there is a 5 minute registration period. On one of these sessions the School Prefects join the tutors to help the year 7 and 8 pupils.

The tutor is responsible for all aspects of the general wellbeing of each child in his/her group - regular attendance, personal appearance, progress in work, records, regular contact with parents and in relations with teachers and other children.

The Tutor and Head of Year remain with this group of children for all five years that the pupils are at Ashton Park. This means we get to know each pupil very well and we have a long term relationship with the parents.


Senior pupils are encouraged to support teachers in making the school run smoothly by taking on additional responsibility and acting as role models to younger pupils.

Each May the school selects pupils to be School Prefects. They are led by the Head Boy, Head Girl, Deputy Head Boy and Deputy Head Girl. The pupils are given a badge of office, new school tie and a social room.

Our prefects are seen as our senior pupils who should act as models for others to follow. Each prefect has to perform duties around the school to ensure we maintain the correct ethos. In addition two prefects, one boy and one girl, are linked to each year 7 or year 8 tutor group to help younger pupils feel settled in their new school.

Currently we have 70 prefects and a small group of them form a management group to co-ordinate the work of our prefects. Prefects were introduced to give our pupils more responsibility as they grow up. We believe it is important to recognise the qualities they have so they can be seen as role models for our younger pupils. In taking on this role we hope our younger children will look upon our prefects as friendly and helpful. This makes the transition from primary school to secondary school so much easier.

Primary/secondary liaison

The school aims to work closely with its partner Primary Schools both to aid the transition for children from one phase to the next and to aid continuity in the curriculum.

An opportunity to spend a day at Ashton Park School is offered to the pupils of all our partner Primary Schools. During this day the children follow a timetable of lessons so that they can experience how a comprehensive school works whilst having the security of the presence of their fellow class mates.

Each summer we arrange an 'Academic Challenge' involving four subject areas for over 400 primary pupils, drama workshops and a major production watched by over 300 primary pupils.

Our staff are liaising with primary teachers to devise work that can be started in primary school and continued in the first few weeks of secondary school. Our current first year trialled this approach for us and teachers are beginning to improve it for next year.

Our primary colleagues have all agreed to forward us samples of each pupil's year 6 work in English, Mathematics and Science as well as a copy of their year 6 report and SAT results. This proves invaluable for us to pitch work at the correct level early on in their secondary careers.

Recognition of success

The school hopes to stimulate positive attitudes and develop potential for good work, attitude or service in school or the community by means of a merit system.

Pupils in year 7 and 8 have merit cards and Merit Certificates, Tutor's and Head of Year Commendations are awarded.

In years 9 to 11 merits lead to Tutor and Head of School Commendation Certificates.

Every subject awards certificates each term to pupils who have performed well in either effort or attainment. These are presented in assembly in front of their year group.

If pupils gain a large proportion of 'A' grades on their reports for effort the Headteacher interviews them to acknowledge their commitment and encourage them.

If a teacher considers a pupil has achieved 'Beyond their Expectation' then they will ask the pupil to take the piece of work to the Headteacher. He will discuss the work with the pupil and then write to the parent to share in the pupil's success.

Any outstanding achievements are recognised by entry in the Roll of Honour which is displayed in the cabinet in the foyer of the school.

Reports and Parents' Evenings

Written reports on pupils' progress and performance are sent to the parents each year. Parents' Evenings are held to coincide with these reports so that parents have an opportunity to talk to the staff who teach their child.

In year 10 and 11 a new form of recording pupils' progress called a Record of Achievement has been introduced. This differs from the traditional report by acknowledging achievements in and out of school and by providing an opportunity for pupils to make written comments on their own performance in addition to teachers' comments.

In addition to the formal meetings, parents are welcome to make individual appointments with the Form Tutor or Head of Year to discuss particular problems. We believe that by working closely with parents most problems can be resolved.

School Council

Each year the pupils elect a school council with representatives from each Tutor Group.

This body enables pupils to involve themselves in discussion of any aspect of school life and to make their views known to the Headteacher, staff and governors. Although this is quite a recent innovation the potential is very great, and the present school council has already proved effective.

The Headteacher issues the council with a small amount of money each year to improve the facilities and the environment of the school.

School history

Sec. Mod. that is like a public school

Taken from Bristol Evening Post, Saturday August 14, 1954

On the edge of Bristol at Bower Ashton, a secondary modern school is being built in a public school setting. Already its planners, designers and builders are proudly claiming the environment to be the best of any secondary school in Bristol if not throughout the country. Biased they may be, but even strangers passing the site, on part of the old Ashton Court Estate, which was compulsorily acquired, have had inquired when the 'new private school' is to be opened and where a prospectus could be obtained. The answer of course is that it is not a private school and secondary schools do not publish prospectuses. If they did, then the school, likely to be named Ashton Park Secondary Modern, could certainly issue an attractive one.

The Gatehouse in Ashton Park School grounds

The Gatehouse is situated adjacent to the A370 Long Ashton by-pass and is located on the south side of the school site. Originally the gatehouse was known as the 'Lawn Gate' and belonged to the Ashton Court Estate, being one of the four serving the mansion. The Lawn Gate was the main entrance to the Estate from Bristol and when first erected it would probably have been lived in by a gatekeeper and his family.

No exact information is available about the date of construction but Bristol's leading architects believe it to have been built about 1840 and consider it to be a fine example of early 19th century neo-gothic architecture.

It is built of Bathstone, probably from Westwood Quarry and some of the original leaded windows are still in place. Externally the Gatehouse forms an arch with accomodation on both sides of the main entrance. The east and west ground floor wings have slated pitched roofs and the main two-storey section, above the arch, has a flat roof. All the roofs are concealed behind a castellated parapet.

The original wrought iron gates are still in position together with the adjacent boundary wall and railings During the Second World War the east wing suffered some damage from bombs falling in one of the many air raids experienced by the City of Bristol. These repairs can be detected along with the marks in the stone stone slabs under the archway that were made by carriages going to and from the Ashton Court Mansion.

The remains of a bell pull used to summon the gatekeeper can also be observed on entering the archway. Inside the Gatehouse there is a substantial ground floor room in both the east and west wings which flank the arch and rooms in three of the four turrets; the fourth turret space being taken up by a spiral staircase on the east side. The staircase is made of wood and is very small. The large upper room is normally entered by a main stone staircase on the west side and a small scullery at the base of the staircase. Inside the large upper room there are remains of a decorative cornice and Victorian iron grate.

By the 1940's the Gatehouse was lived in by two families and this large upper room had been sub-divided by a partition giving two rooms - one for each of the families. The building was originally heated by open fires located in some of the rooms and lit by gas lights, even in the 1950's, since electricity was not installed.

The Sequoia Tree

One could imagine its cover, depicting in colour a contemporary school economically designed and distributed over a few acres edging the rolling estate. It would be flanked by the beautiful Avon Gorge and in the distance there would be a gentle slope of hills. Inside one would read of its academic aims, and of the fine gymnasium, the spacious, well lit classrooms, the entire block devoted to science, the airy assembly hall, the two seperate blocks housing craft rooms and a domestic science unit. Such a prospectus would be incomplete unless each page carried a little drawing of the famous Sequoia tree-the giant American redwood variety-in the grounds. It would have come down when building started 12 months ago as it came within the site. But the tree's history (it is over 100 years old) and rarity were pointed out, and the authorities agreed to build the school a few yards further over.

For 2,000

Despite bad weather the construction programme has been excellently maintained. The finishing date is planned for next June but on the site it is optimistically thought that work will be concluded even before then. In September 1955 the first term is scheduled to start with 600 lucky boys and girls. These youngsters will come from Hotwells fisrt of all to ease the strain on Portway secondary school, which will then be in a better position to extend facilities for a secondary education to the children of Lawrence Weston estate. Eventually, as a very long-term plan, other buildings will be added to Ashton Park School to accomodate 2,000 children, all of secondary school age, from Bedminster, Ashton and Southville.

School history 2

Ashton Park Secondary Modern opened on September 8th 1955

An extract from the school magazine, 1984

The school opened with 350 children and the following members of staff. Mr A Hinchley, Headteacher Mrs M G Edwards, English Mr Keershaw, Geography Mr G C Aulman, Languages Mrs M Padfield, Senior Mistress Mr A W Bondface, Music Mr K Jarvis, Physical Education Mr Stezaker, Maths Mr B S Franklin, Art Mr S A Grimshaw, Woodwork Miss B L Wright, History Miss J M Escott, Geography and general subjects Mrs Farelly English and "backward children" Miss Y Edermanger, Physical Education Mr J H Crosland, Science Miss S M Rubery, Domestic subjects.

Everybody arrived in September 1955 and my Mum and Dad were two of the first pupils to attend the school, which had just been built. Everybody met in the school dining hall as the builders were still working on the assembly hall. From there everybody was shown their house master or mistress and whatever classroom they would be using. There was only three years at that time, 1st, 2nd and 3rd.

The 2nd and 3rd years were made up of pupils from other school. The houses were as they are now Fry,Smyth, Brunel and Kingsley. The Headmaster's name was Mr Hinchley. The school consisted of two streams, comprehensive and grammar. The grammar classes were first year classes only, called 6I and 6A, and the comprehensive classes were named after the points of the compass - North, South, East and West.

Uniform was compulsory, girls wore blazers and ties and even a hard hat. School sports were played at the clanage, because the fields were not yet complete. Mr Jarvis was then Sportsmaster.

Clair Tuttiett 1984

primary schools in Ashton, secondary schools in Ashton, schools in Ashton

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