Academic

At Bales College Year 7 students begin an academic journey which will lead to GCSEs, A levels and a university place and it is important that good work habits begin at this young age.

We set very high expectations and expect our students to work hard. Teaching staff are highly qualified, very experienced, and class sizes are small. We offer full coverage of the National Curriculum in Years 7-9 and students continue to GCSE courses in Year 10 and 11. The Programmes of Study for each subject can be found on our website.

GCSE courses are all based on Edexcel syllabus with a combination of GCSE and IGCSE. Homework is a regular part of teaching at Bales College: students receive a homework diary which is checked weekly by the form tutor and should be signed by parents.

Durham University CEM System

The Durham University CEM system is used by many top schools to monitor the progress of each student. Tests are done at the point the student joins the school, to establish a baseline academic performance and profile of each student. This shows the strengths and weaknesses of each student and gives a performance grade which is matched nationally against other students, purely for monitoring internal progress (not for external ratings).

Each year, students take further tests, to show how they are progressing against their own previous performance and against projected performance.

This is an incredibly valuable tool.

For years 7-9, the Midys System is used: http://www.cem.org/midyis

For years 10 and 11, the Yellis system is used: http://www.cem.org/yellis

For Sixth Form (years 12 and 13), the Alis is the system used: http://www.cem.org/alis

Regular exams

Students are set target grades based on prior achievement and monitored regularly against them with exams held four times per year. Our end of year exams are held in June. Parents will receive a grade letter every term, a full written report at the end of the Easter term and our parents evening is held in mid December. Teaching continues until the end of term in early July and revision classes are held during holiday periods for GCSE students.

Our aim is for our students to become responsible young people ready for the transition to a career or university life. Students are full time; the day begins at 8.45 and ends at 4.00p.m.

Subjects taught:

  • Art and Design
  • Biology
  • Business
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Science
  • Economics
  • English Literature
  • French
  • German
  • Spanish
  • Geography
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • PE
  • Physics
  • PSHE
  • *Optional additional music lessons