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Formby High School win national award for the Most Creative School of the year

Formby High School win the Tes Creative School of the Year award.

On Friday 22 June the national prestigious Tes (Times Educational Supplement) Awards were held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London. The awards, celebrating their tenth year, recognise outstanding contributions made by education teams and individuals to help students around the country to succeed, both inside and outside the classroom.

Formby High School was shortlisted for the Most Creative School and Secondary School of the Year. Eight schools were shortlisted in both categories. We are delighted to announce that FHS won the Creative School of the Year and Mr Cook, Senior Assistant Headteacher, received the award on stage from Al Murray (Pub Landlord). This is one of the most high profile events in the education calendar, attracting an audience of 1000, including the Secretary of State for Education and HM Chief Inspector of Schools. It is a phenomenal achievement and deserved recognition of the great work that takes place at FHS on a daily basis to promote creativity. Mr Mackenzie commented how “receiving the award on this national platform was a moment of great pride.”

The judges said they were “hugely impressed by the way Formby High has sustained its commitment to a fully rounded creative curriculum in the face of wider pressures to narrow the breadth of student experience.”

“Not only do Formby students benefit from a dazzling array of creative opportunities themselves, the school also shows outstanding commitment to spreading its good practice beyond its own walls.”

Tes editor Ann Mroz said: “This was a record year for entries and the standard was exceptionally high. The shortlists were particularly strong so all those who have won an award should be very proud - it’s an extraordinary achievement. We salute each and every one of them.”

FHS did not win the Secondary School of the Year, losing out to Kensington Aldridge Academy, the school that neighbours Grenfell Tower and lost five of its students in the disaster. Within two months of the fire it had reopened, relocating to new, temporary accommodation, and recently it received an outstanding Ofsted judgement. The school’s story over the last year is an inspiration and they are wholly deserving winners of the award.

Formby High School believes that the arts and creativity are a “magic key” to unlocking students’ potential and develop their confidence, independence, resilience, pride and cooperation. Although there is increasing pressure on schools to focus on the English Baccalaureate, Formby maintains a strong suite of creative courses, with GCSE options in dance, drama, fine art and music. At sixth form, the creative curriculum includes A levels in art and design, music, music technology, theatre studies and dance.

The school operates daily art clubs and workshops, including 11 dance companies; 12 musical ensembles; a pantomime for Year 7 that routinely involves a cast of over 100 young thespians; a Tech Crew spanning Year 7 to 13, which runs the Drama Studio; and a Shakespeare Schools Festival drama company.

Community outreach is central to the school, with Formby investing more than £20,000 in allowing staff to work dedicated “community time” in local schools to enhance their creative curricula. The school is a leading local Artspace forum for art teachers and is part of the Creative Spark network with the Chartered College of Teaching, supporting the delivery of the Sing Up and UK Choir Festival programmes.

For more information about the event and all the winners, visit the Times Educational Supplement (Tes) Awards website.

Mr Mackenzie with the prestigious award, commented how “receiving the award on this national platform was a moment of great pride.”

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