Latymer Upper School has always strived to be a good neighbour. Our founder Edward Latymer set the tone back in 1624 with his act of philanthropy and a strong social conscience remains part of the School’s DNA.
Latymer staff and students thrive on building and strengthening mutually beneficial relationships with organisations, charities and state schools in the local community and beyond. Every Lower Sixth student (just under 200 pupils) regularly participates in Service in the Community as part of their timetabled curriculum.
At the Tes Awards 2018, Latymer Upper School received the Independent-State School Partnerships Award, in recognition of our range of meaningful, sustained, impactful projects with our local state primary and secondary schools. The judges said:
“…a significant number of pupils and staff are clearly engaged in an astounding array of partnerships, which reflect their sense of civic duty.”
The ISC Schools Together website celebrates and encourages partnership projects between independent schools, maintained schools and local communities. Schools Together also highlights a sample of cross-sector collaborations from across the UK, as well as providing advice and ideas for setting up successful partnerships. As can be seen from the website, Latymer has one of the most biggest networks of partnerships in London.
Saturday School has been running for many years and is more popular than ever. Every Saturday in the Spring Term up to 150 children in Year 6 from 30 local primary schools are selected by their head teachers to experience a full morning of fun, challenging activities and lessons taught by Latymer staff.
The testimonials speak for themselves. One head teacher said that Saturday School “has sparked a buzz in some of the lower-ability children which was not there before”, while another said Latymer’s support “is absolutely invaluable in the progress and development of all of our children”.
Primary debating is an exciting project for Year 6 pupils from 12 local primary schools, which runs from November to Easter. Lead by Latymer’s Lower Sixth students, the children meet weekly to learn debating skills, and the project culminates in a Grand Debating Competition to which their teachers and families are invited.
STEM Academy runs for four weeks on Saturdays in the Spring Term and aims to inspire up to 40 local secondary school pupils in Years 7 and 8 in Science, Maths & Technology. The participants learn about computer programming, robotics and the science behind making musical instruments.
Throughout their Lower Sixth year, all students work as volunteers in a huge range of schools and organisations as a timetabled part of their curriculum. The majority of these are set up through the School’s partnership links, but many students seek out their placements independently, according to their own passions. Our aim is to respond to the needs of our community and to offer tangible, sustained help as required.
“Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is outstanding.”
Independent Schools Inspectorate
Subject support and academic partnerships with secondary schools have been mutually beneficial. Pupils from local schools attend weekly GCSE revision classes, taught by Latymer staff, in a number of subjects including Latin and Maths. Our students run a weekly Maths revision group at Latymer over lunchtime for local Year 11 pupils, as well as going out to nearby schools to provide mentoring in a variety of subjects.
Higher education and careers. Latymer extends regular invitations to an increasing number of maintained senior schools. Partner schools come to Latymer to participate in talks, practice Oxbridge interviews, take part in careers and university admissions information evenings for the UK and overseas, as well as involvement in networking events off-site.
Art, Drama and Music collaborations. In 2018, The Jamaican Shakespeare Company performed in the Edward Latymer Theatre in collaboration with the Drama department. The Art department hosts the ‘Big Draw’ when pupils, parents and staff from Latymer and local state partner schools come to Latymer’s art studios for a day of life drawing. Music collaborations are frequent and varied.
Tri-borough music hub: Latymer continues to host the borough’s music service for over 150 young musicians from surrounding state schools each Saturday throughout the academic year. Music teachers from all over London use Latymer premises and equipment to deliver individual and ensemble lessons. Latymer Lower Sixth students volunteer as assistants.
Generating Genius is an educational charity that is now firmly rooted as one of the School’s partners. Latymer runs sessions for the Junior Genius programme in which bright, motivated children in Year 10 from disadvantaged backgrounds come to the School to learn debating skills. In addition, the Bright Sparks programme, run alongside Junior Genius, offers English, Maths and Science workshops to children in Year 5 from nearby state schools. The children are nominated by their teachers as those having the academic potential required for entry to the Upper School and who would benefit from bursary support.