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West Hatch High School
High Road, IG7 5BT, UK Chigwell
+44 (0)2085-048216

A Warm Welcome

West Hatch is a special place. We work hard together to achieve success in everything we do. Teachers at West Hatch set high standards. They have high expectations of their students and give dedication and commitment in return. Ours is a happy, caring and high-achieving school. The school’s reputation is based on its continuing ability to produce self-confident, articulate and ambitious young people.

We are a forward thinking Business and Enterprise specialist school which, nonetheless retains its belief in the importance of traditional values. We were also awarded a second specialist status in Humanities in 2006. We encourage academic excellence and insist on high standards of behaviour and appearance.

We offer pupils a stimulating and wide-ranging curriculum which will develop the skills and aptitudes they will need in their adult lives. To be successful citizens in the 21st century children need to learn with determination, be able to acquire new skills and build strong moral values. We depend upon a close and effective partnership with parents to achieve these aims. I am proud to lead a school which gives children so many opportunities for success.

Frances Howarth Headteacher


School Aims

West Hatch has a distinctive ethos, which guides our work and the education of our students.  Our values celebrate the achievements of the past while looking forward to the challenges of the future.
 We believe in:

  • success, for every individual and for all abilities
  • learning as a right and a responsibility for everyone
  • pride in our achievements and all the school stands for
  • trust as the foundation for honest and positive relationships
  • commitment to and from all who study and work at West Hatch
  • enterprise the encouragement of initiative, self-reliance and enquiry

West Hatch is a school which:

  •  focuses on its core purpose of teaching and learning
  • seeks to build on established high standards and good practice
  • promotes leadership at all levels
  • operates a culture which empowers, where people are trusted to pursue ideas
  • does not blame – we learn from our mistakes
  • Is fully committed to all that’s involved in retaining National Healthy School Status.

A school where students:

  • are thoughtful, responsible citizens positive about the world they live in
  • are independent thinkers, good communicators and life-long learners
  • have high quality thinking, problem solving and technological skills
  • are flexible and able to respond to new opportunities
  • strive for success and wish to make the most of themselves

National Healthy Schools Programme

We recognise that a students’ health and well being impacts on their behaviour and ability to learn. We have gained National Healthy Schools Status in December 2006 and as such West Hatch is committed to

  • supporting our students in developing healthy behaviour
  • helping reduce health inequalities
  • helping promote social inclusion
  • helping raise pupil achievement

By achieving this status have demonstrated our commitment and contribution to the five outcomes of the Every Child Matters agenda

  • being healthy
  • staying safe
  • enjoying and achieving
  • making a positive contribution
  • economic well being

A display of achievements towards accreditation can be seen in the main foyer to the school.


Subjects are taught in an imaginative and exciting way, giving all students the opportunity to be actively involved in their own learning.   Teaching and learning strategies ensure that all students are able to progress according to their individual needs and ability and reach their full potential.

In Year 7 – 9 a full range of subjects is offered to all students.  In addition, gifted linguists study German as well as French in Years 8 and 9. Follow the course outlines link for further information

In Years 10 – 11 students follow one of four curriculum pathways, which offer a mix of subjects, tailored to their aptitudes and ability and designed to maximise their potential.  Students continue to study the core subjects of English, Maths, Science, French and PE but now have new choices like Triple Science and Statistics at GCSE as well as a range of vocational courses. More about the Post 16 curriculum.

All students have lessons in Personal and Social Education together with Citizenship and Enterprise opportunities.  We recognise that young people benefit from guidance in their understanding of social, moral, cultural and spiritual issues.

Learning Support provide strategies and opportunities where students experience difficulty in their learning or need to be extended further to develop particular.

  • Homework, Monitoring and Reporting
  • Homework Diary
  • Assessment and Reporting
  • Computing
  • Learning Support (SEN)
  • Year 9 Pathway Booklet

  • Art & Design
  • Business & Economics
  • Careers (Work Related Learning)
  • Drama
  • English
  • Geography
  • History
  • ICT
  • Maths
  • Media
  • Modern Foreign Languages
  • Music
  • Nursery Nursing (CACHE)
  • Physical Education
  • PSEC (Social Enterprise)
  • Psychology
  • Religious Studies
  • Science
  • Learning Support (SEN)
  • Technology (Resistant Materials, Textiles and Food)

    Education does not simply finish at the classroom door. We believe that extra-curricular activities form a vital element in the development of our students.  At West Hatch we offer a wide range of challenging and exciting activities taking place at lunch times and after school which students are actively encouraged to take part in.  They will have the opportunity to set up and run their own min-enterprise, become a Junior Sports Leader or cause a stir as master chefs!

    High quality music, dance and drama performances are popular events involving students from across the age range.

    West Hatch participates fully in a variety of competitive fixtures with other schools. We have an impressive track record in producing successful teams and individual competitors in a range of sports.

    Our students regularly enjoy fieldwork trips and visits to the theatre, museums and galleries. International trips to Europe and the USA also help to broaden their horizons.  All students in Year 7 benefit from the Gilwell experience and in Year 8 test themselves at the Outdoor Activities Centre in Harlow. Students also have the opportunity to participate in the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme and later become involved in the World Challenge.

    School Visits

    Every year students are offered the chance to participate in a very wide range of educational trips and visits. These range from sports trips to Florida and Dubai , a Ski trip in America , Fieldwork in Geography and Biology to Europe and within Britain , visits to a Shik temple, a mosque, the battlefields of France , day trips to France . Higher Education Conventions, Business related trips, theatre trips, and trips to France and Germany to support their language acquisition are to name but a few.

    Sports and Games

    In addition to residential programmes to Gilwell and Harlow Outdoor Pursuits Centre, pupils have the opportunity to represent the school at local district and national level. In addition extra curricular clubs and practices take place in the following areas, Basket Ball, Swimming, Football (boys and girls), Rugby, Fitness Training, Hockey, Netball, Athletics, Sailing, Fencing, Aerobics, Gymnastics, Cricket, Cross Country, Taekwan Do and Table Tennis.

    Other Activities

    We operate the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme at Bronze, Silver and Gold level.

    Dance classes run weekly and students stage annually two Dance evenings which are extremely popular.
    A number of mini enterprises operate with students creating small businesses which they run very successfully. ‘The Pot People’ is one such company which grows and sells flowers and bulbs for a number of occasions throughout the year.


    We have a thriving Music department with six peripatetic teachers visiting the school offering tuition on fourteen instruments. The school boasts a very successful steelband who have performed live on television, at the Royal Albert Hall, Chelmsford Cathedral and the Barbican. In addition a Jazz Band, orchestra, choir and ensembles all practice and perform regularly.

    Public Speaking

    We regularly take part in public speaking competitions organised locally. Pupils have a good track record in public speaking and engage in lively debate.


    Pupils are entered for a number of local and national competitions. We experience success in the Junior and Senior Maths Challenge at Bronze, Silver and Gold level, in the ‘Young Chefs Award’ and in the ‘Taste of Success’ competition.


    Drama is very successful at the school with significant numbers taking the subject at GCSE , AS and A2 Level. With a purpose built Drama Suite, containing a Drama Studio, effective and adventurous presentations are put on. Students are currently rehearsing for Sweeney Todd. Performances are scheduled for Spring Term.


    At West Hatch we greatly value the contribution pupils make as Prefects to the wider life and work of the school. Following a successful ‘Community Service’ in the Sixth Form, and if they have demonstrated skills and attributes such as commitment, reliability, flexibility, willingness to get involved, students are awarded Prefect status. Head Boys and Girls are elected on in a Sixth Form Committee. They meet eth the Headteacher regularly. All Prefects carry out a number of duties during the day and at a number of evening events throughout the year.

    In addition we operate a system of Prefects for Pupils in Year 11 again for students who have proved themselves to be worthy of this award. Again they contribute via duties and support to the wider life of the school and act as an excellent role model for younger pupils.

    Student Council

    The school operates a Student Council which has a number of committees that focus on key areas of school life ranging from the environment to food provision, projects also involving them in conducting research across a number of areas. The Head Boys and Girls sit on the Governor Pupil and Community Committee. The Sixth Form have their own Committee which is both active and successful in bringing about a number of changes.

    Community Service

    All students in the Sixth Form give back to the school community by offering their services every week by working in departments, assisting with students who find their reading difficult or helping out in a coaching capacity. They also work in a variety of settings outside the school e.g assisting with Cubs, Brownies, helping out in local schools etc. A number of them assist in lessons, helping run practices be it in Sport or Music or with whole school display. Their inputs are invaluable.

    Each term the Extra Curricular Activities Programme is published. We encourage as many pupils as possible to come along and to get involved.

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