Tavistock College is one of the largest schools in the country with a student population in excess of 1,861 with 382 in the Sixth Form. Oversubscribed and in the vanguard of curriculum development, the College has earned an outstanding reputation for academic excellence and pastoral support. In September 1996, we were granted Language College status under the Specialist Schools Initiative.
The College traces its origin to a 10th century foundation known as the Abbey School which was restored in 1552. It was a co-educational grammar school on 1932 and became fully comprehensive in 1959. Throughout its history, Tavistock College has combined a tradition for excellence and pastoral care with a willingness to seize new opportunities for the benefits of the students. The College serves an extended community admitting children from Plymouth to Lifton and from Postbridge to the River Tamar.
The College is organised by Departments who assume responsibility for the academic management of specific curriculum areas.
A core curriculum structure operates throughout the College. The College has an excellent Special Educational Needs Department which provides an important resource for all students. The staff and students of the College are committed to a critical approach to teaching and learning with regular reports, predicted GCSE grades in Years 10 and 11 and action research to improve school effectiveness.
The pastoral organisation of the College is based upon a Year system. The five Years are the basis for PSHE work, extra curricular activities and social events. Post-16 students are led by the Director of Studies who is responsible for their academic and social welfare.
We have over 30 extra curricular activities that range from two orchestras to rock climbing and from fencing to the sculpture workshop. A comprehensive range of music and drama complements the culture of our community.
The College has 105 fte teaching staff and a large body of support staff, including learning support assistants, administrators, technicians, premises and catering staff. There is a high level of IT support with over 400 computers.
The College has an International ethos which extends to student and staff exchanges - Spain, France, Germany, Russia, Italy and the USA have been visited by students, whilst members of staff have recently taken part in conferences and training programmes in Athens, Madrid, Lisbon, Turin and China.
The College is at the heart of an extended community and the work of the Community Education Department has been instrumental in generating new initiatives to meet local needs. The Community Educational Team have provided a comprehensive programme that ranges from basic literacy to Access to Higher Education courses and from the provision of crèche facilities to open access IT facilities supported by European Funding.