Magnus C of E Academy students shine in prestigious Scholars Programme

All 11 students taking part passed with one student attaining a rare 1stclass result

Since January 2021, eleven Year 9 students from Magnus Church of England Academy have been following the ‘Scholars Programme’, a challenging course aimed at giving students a taste of high-quality university tuition.

The course, accessed through The Brilliant Club, is an award-winning university access charity working throughout the UK. All Magnus students taking part worked with a PhD researcher and passed the course, with one student attaining a rare 1st class result.

Magnus as a whole also surpassed the national average of students who gain a 1st or 2:1 in their final assessment, -achieving a praiseworthy 92% when the national average is 70%.

Mr Peyton, is Assistant Principal at Magnus Church of England Academy and he said, “The Scholars programme gave our students the opportunity to experience University style learning through tutorials led by a PhD Graduates. Working with a world class researcher is a rare experience for secondary school students and reflects the Magnus Academy vision of developing young people who achieve excellence.”

Mr Peyton said that students had shown commendable commitment to their work. “Our scholars attended 7 tutorials over 3 months led by an English Literature PhD Graduate. In addition, there were weekly assignments to complete and a final 2000-word assessment essay.

“This was all delivered to replicate University style learning and marked on a degree grading system. Through this study our Scholars have developed their critical thinking and metacognition skills, but most importantly, a new confidence in their ability to overcome challenge. Graduates of the Scholars Programme are twice as likely to progress to highly selective Universities such as Oxford and Cambridge.”

Student Jess Mellon (Yr9) gained a 1st class result and said, “I really enjoyed the Scholars Programme, it wasn’t easy, but I worked really hard. I’ve learned lots of useful skills, for example writing a critical argument. Before I started the course, I wasn’t sure about going to university, but the Scholars Programme has made me much more confident.”

Mr Peyton says that Magnus students demonstrated they were equal to the challenge and were a source of pride for the school community. “I am incredibly proud of our graduates; all passed the final assessment with 80% achieving the second highest grade of a 2:1. One student was awarded a first-class honours grade. This was the only student to achieve the highest mark possible across the multiple schools their PhD Tutor worked with!

“This achievement is even more significant due to the effect of the second lockdown. A large part of this programme was delivered remotely, -only through the highest levels of dedication were our scholars able to be so successful. They were supported through the whole programme by Magnus English teacher, Miss Jackson, who went above and beyond to make the programme a success.”

Students who took part were Annie Grattage, Shannon Lambert, Esme Potter, Jess Mellon, Evie Richards, Alan Wilkinson, Rebekah Hough, Mason Shepherd, Libby Howson, Gracie Miller and Masie Hardy.