Children’s Author Ali Sparkes inspires Prep School pupils

Ali Sparkes reading to the Prep SchoolChildren’s author Ali Sparkes spent a whole day at the Prep School during the Spring term, inspiring the pupils to write stories of their own.

Ali’s first stand-alone novel, Frozen In Time, won the Blue Peter Book of the Year Award in 2010 and her books, including the SWITCH series, have been translated into many languages from French to Japanese, Polish to Korean. Her books are pacy, funny reads, and this came across in two engaging presentations, one to Years 3, 4 and 5, and another to years 6, 7 and 8.

Ali really involved the pupils in the presentations. In her first talk she went into depth about how she became a writer, in a very interactive way, and in the second presentation she ran a Genius Quiz, to find out the potential child geniuses in the room, as the main character of her book, Carjacked was a child genius. To the horror of the teachers, she then repeated the exercise with them.

Ali Sparkes talking to the Prep School


After singing books for the pupils, Ali then ran a workshop with some of Seaford Prep School’s keenest young writers. She spoke about the importance of the cover, blurb and first line to get readers hooked. After asking the pupils to vote on the cover, blurb and first line of four of her books, she split them into teams. She challenged them to come up with their own story idea, and come up with a title, blurb and first line. She encouraged them to focus on gripping the reader from the start. They then voted on each others ideas, and the winner was Human Robot. But all teams came up with interesting concepts, especially given the amount of time to work on them.

Ali Sparkes takes a workshop with keen young Seaford writers

Ali was very impressed with the pupils, but had special praise for the winning idea. “The first line was very gripping, it really pulled you in, that’s why I voted for that one.”

Eleanor Jones, Seaford’s Gifted and Talented Co-ordinator, thought that Ali was fantastic at inspiring the pupils. “I had read a couple of books of Ali’s and so was delighted to have her come and talk to all the pupils today, she was wonderful, as full of fun, suspense and excitement as her books, we laughed, we held our breath, we ‘ahhh’d ‘all the way through her readings…fantastic!”

Ali Sparkes signing books for Prep School pupils


Former Seafordian returns to test innovative new computer system

Alex Macpherson and Seaford studentAlex Macpherson, a former Seafordian, is currently in his third year at Warwick University, studying Computer Science. He recently returned to Seaford for a research visit as part of his dissertation project.

Alex has to design and implement a project of his own choice for his dissertation, and he has focused on the education technology market, and has been developing a system that’s similar to one that Seaford currently uses, the Firefly system. We interviewed Alex about his project and his time at Seaford, which you can watch in the video Continue reading

Seaford’s scientists broaden knowledge before half term

Sixth Form Students at Physics LectureJust before half term, there was a flurry of activity in Seaford’s Science Department.

On Thursday evening a group of Sixth Form Physics students enjoyed a stimulating talk on black holes and galaxy formation at Sussex University delivered by Professor Peter Thomas. The students learned how the study of quasars and their associated radio jets provide strong evidence for the existence of supermassive black holes at the centre of galaxies.

Friday saw a group of our most able Year 10 scientists attend Continue reading

Seaford students win Holocaust Educational Trust competition

Seaford students James Thompson and Tom HennessyHere at Seaford, we like to create a culture where older students can inspire younger students with their knowledge and the experiences they’ve had.

Last week, A Level students Tom Hennessy and James Thompson took a lesson with the whole of Year 9, to tell them about their experience visiting Auschwitz-Birkenau in Poland. The two students had the humbling opportunity to visit there late last year after winning  Continue reading

Meet the Head – an interview with John Green

John Green talking with students

Seaford’s Headmaster, John Green, was recently interviewed for Sussex Life Magazine, to talk about the changes he’s made over the last 3 years, his determination to continue developing the school, and helping every child to reach their academic and personal bests. Read the interview in full below. If you’d like to find out more, register for our next Open Morning for an informal tour of the school, and a chance to meet John and his senior team.

What makes your school unique?

Ambition is vital and Seaford’s number one focus is to make sure pupils attain the best results they are capable of, their personal best. Seaford isn’t the normal conveyor belt school and I believe in an all-round, inclusive and non-elitist education. This is the strength of Seaford, where pupils are encouraged to be the best they can be – as the School motto states: Reach for the Heights! – Ad Alta!

Seaford is set in over 450 acres of listed parkland nestled at the foot of the South Downs. Students benefit from this space whether Continue reading

Seaford Students Celebrate Best Ever A*-B GCSE Results

John Green with happy pupils Mattie Hansing, Christopher Colegate, Annabel Jeffries, Lucy Brown and Danie LowStudents at Seaford College are celebrating achieving their best ever A*-B GCSE results leading to a record number of pupils heading into the Sixth Form.

Headmaster John Green, who took up the post two years ago and has implemented various successful strategies to improve the school’s academic core, said: “I’m very pleased with the progress and academic strategy we have put in place this year enabling all our students to achieve excellent results. Harry Wheeler, from Wisborough Green, achieved 10 A*s, Callum Loeffen-Ames, from Bognor Regis, achieved 6A*s and 5As, Daniel Low, from Billingshurst, gained 7A*s, 2As and a B, Mairi Donaldson, from Haslemere, gained 7A*s and an A, Daisy Hanbury, from Haslemere, achieved 4A*s, 3As and a B, Callum Easton, from Loxhill, gained 3A*s, 6As and a B, and Alex Harry from Billingshurst achieved 3A*s and 6 As. We look forward to welcoming back a record number of Seaford students in September into the Sixth Form and wish them every success as they continue their studies at Seaford.”

“In addition to the best ever A*-B result at Seaford the A*-A pass rate has increased and our impressive A*-C pass rate of Daisy Hanbury from Haslemere with her results80% has been repeated this year.  In a current environment of an undoubted toughening up of academic standards these results are particularly pleasing. Many children have achieved academic personal bests spurred on by our new Challenge Grade system and our excellent teaching. Our English and English Literature are particularly impressive, where many of our pupils have surpassed their Challenge Grade. As a proud Mattie Hansing celebrates with her proud mumnon-selective school our results indicate that our academic core is strengthening year on year enabling pupils to gain their academic personal bests. In conjunction with the strong A Level results, this demonstrates that Seaford is continuing to gather academic momentum”.

John added: “We achieved an 80% A*-B result in English which is simply phenomenal.” John Doy, Head of English said: “I’m delighted by our latest sets of results in English and English Literature which are testament to the hard work of the students and all the members of the English department here at Seaford.” Harry Wheeler, from Wisborough Green, achieved 2 A*s in English Language and English Literature. He should be congratulated on his impressive 100% pass rate in his in English papers.
Harry achieved 10 A*s and said: “It felt really good when I saw the results. All of the teachers at Seaford have given me so much support and guidance. I see Mr Doy as a mentor and he really supported me in the Debating Society. The society gave me a lot of confidence and helped me develop a good work ethic. I worked independently preparing my speeches Harry Wheelerand I’m sure these skills will help me in the future. I’m studying Maths, Further Maths, History, Chemistry and Physics at A Level and I would like to go to Oxford or Cambridge and then work in the City in Law or Accounting”. Mrs Wheeler added: “I am very proud, Harry has thrived at Seaford. Seaford gives students a balance between working hard and other things in life, helping them to keep things in perspective. Harry has high expectations for himself and I was impressed at how well his tutors knew him. They knew exactly how far to push him, but also knew when to tell Harry to take it easy on himself. I can’t praise Mr Doy enough.”

Callum Loeffen-Ames, from Bognor Regis, has achieved 6A*s and 5As. He achieved A* in English Literature and an A in English Language and the results are a great personal achievement. Callum said: “I’m really happy and I got better than my Challenge grades. It is really motivating when you see what a teacher thinks you can get in a subject.” James Passam said: “The ambition shown in his Challenge Grade report is reflected in these superb results. This is a fantastic example of how ongoing academic tracking and the review of each pupil’s learning flightpath, allied with regular communication with students, and encouragement, helps them exceed their expectations and reach their full potential.”
Callum added: “I joined Seaford in Year 9 and I really liked it. You learn to do things for yourself, not because you’re forced to. It’s really unjudgemental and you are allowed to be yourself. I’ve really enjoyed the teaching here.” Callum’s mother, Mrs Loeffen Ames, credits his competitive streak for his academic success: “Callum wants to succeed and beat his siblings!” Callum will be going into Seaford’s Sixth Form to study Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Maths. He hopes to study Medicine at university, and emulate the success of his sister Sasha, Seaford’s Head Girl, who last week won a place to study Biology at Newcastle University.

Daniel Low, who gained an impressive 8*s, 2As and a B in his GCSEs. He said that he was “lost for words and over the moon” with his results, which he wasn’t expecting: “the biggest surprise was Spanish.” Daniel gained 100% in one of his Spanish modules, and also in some of his English papers. Dan said that he gained immensely from Seaford’s Revision Course, where he learnt new revision techniques, such as drawing images to help him revise. He also found Open Mornings incredibly useful, where students come in on Saturday mornings for extra study sessions. His mother, Mrs Low, said: “Dan joined Seaford in Year 6 and has had such a happy time. He’s worked hard, and Seaford is the perfect environment in which to succeed.” Dan is going on to study English Literature, Maths, Psychology and History at A Level.

Headmaster John Green with Daniel Low and his proud mumJames Passam added: “The introduction of bespoke revision courses introduced early on in our GCSE teaching is undoubtedly having a positive impact. Furthermore, in the context of national concerns reported in the press regarding increasing pressures faced by young people, particularly around examination time, this year we hosted a new seminar on welfare and health for both pupils and parents. Students had talks on good nutrition and a balanced lifestyle, which is another element of exam success and helps students manage this stressful time.”

John Green added: “Seaford inspires personal ambition and success so that personal bests are achieved inside and outside the classroom. This is why I love Seaford – because our flight path is unique.” Many of Seaford’s students achieve high academic results and excel in extra-curricular activities. Callum Loeffen-Ames is a great sportsman and played hockey 1st team, the rugby A team, participated in the javelin at county level and played tennis. Daisy Hanbury, with 4A*s, 3As and a B is a key member of the choir. Callum Easton, from Loxhill, Godalming, achieved3A*s, 6As and a B, and is a talented athlete. Jaime Pardey is a key part of Seaford’s drama department, having performed in Oh What a Lovely War! and Little Shop of Horrors. Jaime is going into Seaford’s Sixth Form to study English Literature, History, Music Technology and Theatre Studies. She hopes to go into journalism, and work in radio.

Seaford achieved 100% A*-C for Art. Thomas Waller excelled achieving 100% in all four of his module in Art & Design. He is continuing into Seaford’s Sixth Form where he will study A Levels in Fine Art, 3D Design and Photography. He hopes to then study at the prestigious Central St Martin’s, one of the world’s leading centres of art and design education, where he would like to focus on his painting. He would then be following in the footsteps of Seaford’s Gabriel Monks, who last week won a place at The Falmouth School of Art after achieving an impressive A* in his 3D Design A Level with two of his modules Smiles of success from Annabel Jeffries and Lucy Brownmarked at 100%.

James Passam, Deputy Head Senior School, said: “A particular strength at Seaford is the dedication shown by teachers, and particularly tutors, insofar as the time they give in prioritising pastoral care, which underpins each pupil’s academic progress. This is a unique selling point for Seaford and something we are immensely proud of. The early intervention and support provided to each pupil enables them to develop strategies, and the confidence required, to succeed academically. We view each pupil’s time at Seaford as an educational journey from Year 7 through until Year 13, and we work with students throughout that time to tailor their educational curriculum to suit their strengths and passions, which in turn then leads to them realising personal bests both in and outside of the classroom. There are some real personal triumphs amongst these results for our candidates, and I am immensely proud of all of them for all that they have achieved.”

Seaford offers a unique environment and inspiring personal ambition & success is part of its DNA.

John Green’s Academic Strategy for Seaford College Continues to Succeed Even Though A Levels Toughen Up

Jack Shaw-Pethers, who achieved 3 As, with Headmaster John Green and his parentsSeaford College has seen a significant increase in the overall pass rate at A Level. This has led to Seaford College celebrating its impressive trend of securing students’ places at top Russell Group universities. Headmaster John Green, who took up the post two years ago and has implemented various successful strategies to improve the school’s academic core, said: “We are delighted to have maintained our number of A* grades achieved in last year’s exams, and the A*-C pass rate at close to 75% continues to reinforce our proud academic record. Considering the undoubted increase in academic rigour from the examination boards the results this year are particularly pleasing.”

“We have a significant number of pupils heading to a Russell Group University. Jack Shaw-Pethers, from Haslemere, has achieved 3As and is heading Continue reading

A Conversation with Seaford’s New Head Girl Emma Brown

Emma Brown in a physics lessonMany congratulations to Sixth Former Emma Brown, who has just been appointed Head Girl at Seaford College. We caught up with her to ask her about her plans for the future, and her life after Seaford College.

What is your dream job?
I’d like to work in occupational psychology, which is about understanding the dynamics of how people work in industry, for example how they work together.

What are you doing this autumn?
I’ll be starting my A2s and getting ready for university. I’m applying to Oxford, UCL, Bristol and Bath to do Psychology or Human Sciences. Human Sciences explains more about the biological side of psychology, focussing on genetics and evolution.

What do you think is the biggest challenge facing your generation?
The concept of self-worth. If you have a good sense of self-worth you will be more confident in getting good grades, going for that job, aiming higher. Not having that sense of self-worth can Continue reading

Hugely Successful Speech & Prize Giving Day

The prize winners on Speech DayOn Saturday, more than a thousand pupils, parents and staff attended the Speech and Prize Giving ceremony at Seaford College, making it the largest Speech Day of recent years.

The ceremony focussed on the beating heart of the school – the pupils – four of whom spoke to outline the year’s sporting, creative and community achievements.

Headmaster John Green gave his Annual Address in which he summarised the ‘tremendously successful’ year and underlined Seaford’s strengths, in particular the school’s ability to encourage its pupils to be the best they possibly can be.

Chairman of Governors Richard Venables Kyrke introduced the day’s guest speaker, the record-breaking British climber Jake Meyer. Jake was the youngest man to climb the seven highest peaks on each continent; he has Continue reading

Seaford’s Young Enterprise Success

Seaford's Keaton Smout, Tom Newman, Jack Jamieson and Freddie Miller with their trophiesSeaford College’s Young Enterprise team, Summit, has swept the board at the Arun and Chichester Area Young Enterprise Finals, winning the Best Business Plan, Best Product, Best Presentation and Best Company Prizes. Summit produced a cookbook called Kidz Cook! with recipes for kids, by kids, that has proved so popular that the team sold out of copies, and have had to order a second print run.

Whilst gaining material success, doubling shareholders’ money and making a profit, the team are extremely mindful of Young Enterprise’s role as a charity, which gives 250,000 young people each year the opportunity to realise their potential through a range of practical enterprise programmes. Tom Newman, Managing Director of Summit, said: “For lots of teams it’s all about making a profit. But Young Enterprise is a charity and we wanted to do something that was beneficial for others.”

Summit worked with pupils from Seaford College Prep School to develop recipes to create a colourful and engaging cookbook that will encourage children to venture into the kitchen and have a go at cooking. Head oTeam Summit are photographed by the Midhurst and Petworth Observerf Design Jack Jamieson worked tirelessly to produce the cookbook, creating a final product that was praised for its ‘professional quality and finish.’

Team Summit is made up of Jack Jamieson, Sam Lowndes, Keaton Smout, Tom Newman, Freddie Miller and Wolf Labeji. They explained how they have learnt so much from the Young Enterprise programme: from organisational to teamwork skills, from being able to present in front of a large audience to learning all about shares. Jack Jamieson said: “The only presentation I’d done before was in front of a class of 16, and then we presented in front of 300 people on a proper stage with blinding lights in our faces. But we were fine; it is easier to talk about something if you are passionate about it.”

Team Summit are certainly passionate about business and pursuing a career in it. Head of Marketing, Sales, Press and Publicity Keaton Smout said: ‘Young Enterprise has persuaded me to go into marketing, it’s Continue reading

Meet The New Head of Seaford Prep on May 9th

Seaford's New Head of Prep School Alastair BrownCome and meet Seaford’s new Head of Prep School Alastair Brown at our Open Morning May 9th from 9.00 to 11.00am.

Alastair Brown, who is currently Deputy Head at Dean Close Prep School in Cheltenham, will take up his new position in September 2015. He is an innovative educationalist, a highly successful Geography teacher and a talented sportsman, having played National League Hockey and County 2nd XI Cricket.

Headmaster John Green said: “We are very much looking forward to working with him over the coming years as he builds on the many strengths of the Prep School. The Prep School has flourished under Sebastian and Gillian Rees and we now look forward to a future era of further development under the dynamic and ambitious leadership of Alastair Brown.”

Alastair Brown will be available to meet prospective and current parents on May 9th at our Open Morning from 9.00 to 11.00am.

Policies Not Parties: Seaford College Hosts its Own Innovative Mock Election

election debate square formatweb1On the 7th May many pupils at Seaford College will be voting for the very first time. In preparation for the General Election, the Sixth Form held a mock election with an interesting twist: they would be voting on the basis of policies, not parties.
The voters did not know what parties they would be voting for, and the candidates, Hugo Dean, Christian Disley-May, Lucas Streeter and Michael Laird, also did not know what parties they were representing. All four candidates volunteered because they are keenly interested in politics, Lucas Streeter commenting: ‘Politics is so important because it affects everything.’

Mr Phillips, who teaches History, Law and Politics and organised the Mock Election, urged the Sixth Form to vote on the basis on which set of policies they preferred. He introduced the election with a rousing celebration of democracy, explaining: ‘The election matters to anyone who believes in freedom and who believes in democracy. May 8th 1945 was when World War 2 ended, but on May 7th 1945 the guns fell silent. Seventy years on, this General Election is a celebration of democracy and freedom. 50 million people gave their lives so that we could vote. It is important, it is relevant; the result of the election decides how much tax we pay, the quality of education for a generation, it decides everything.’

Inspired by Mr Phillips’ words, the four candidates presented policies from four political parties on the key issues of Education, Economy, Law and Order and the NHS. The Sixth Form were then invited to vote on the policies they preferred, the votes were counted using the first past the post system and Mr Phillips, acting as Chief Returning Officer, read out the results and revealed which candidate had won the ‘Assembly Hall Constituency.’

Overall winner was Hugo Dean with 30% of the vote. Mr Phillips then revealed that Hugo was representing the Liberal Democrats. Christian Disley-May (Conservative) and Michael Laird (UKIP) were tied on 24%, and Lucas Streeter (Labour) gained 22% of the vote.

After the results were announced, Sixth Former Ben North said: ‘I was surprised that the Liberal Democrats won, but I think it shows how you can be swayed by a party name. It’s made me want to look more closely at the parties’ policies. I think that the Coalition have been doing a good job and five years isn’t long enough, parties should be in power for ten years.’

Headmaster John Green said: ‘The Mock Election shows that Seaford College Sixth Form students are challenging the notion that today’s youth are uninterested in politics. They really understand the importance of exercising their right to vote, when in some countries it is much more difficult.’

To watch the Mock Elections and decide which policies you would vote for CLICK HERE.

Can Seaford’s Mock Election Help You Decide Who to Vote for?

Seaford College Mock Elections 2015In preparation for the General Election, Seaford College’s Sixth Form held a mock election with a twist: they voted on the basis of policies, not parties. The voters did not know what parties they would be voting for, and the candidates, Christian Disley-May, Lucas Streeter, Hugo Dean and Michael Laird, did not know what parties they were representing.

Watch the videos below where the candidates outline the policies of the four main parties regarding the key election issues of Education, Economy, Law and Order, and the NHS, and decide which candidate you would vote for. Seaford’s Sixth Form were suprised with the results – will you be?












Who did you choose? Christian Disley-May was representing the Conservatives, Lucas Streeter Labour, Hugo Dean the Liberal Democrats and Michael Laird UKIP.

Follow the link to read more about the Mock Election:




Seaford College Appoints New Head of Prep School

photo (5) (1)Seaford College is delighted to announce the appointment of Mr Alastair Brown as the Head of Seaford College Prep School from September 2015. Alastair is a proven and inspirational leader who identifies with the ethos and vision of Seaford College. He is an innovative educationalist with a key focus on the development of the individual. Alastair is currently Deputy Head of Dean Close Prep School in Cheltenham and is also a highly successful Geography teacher and a talented sportsman. He has played national league hockey and county 2nd level cricket. Alastair enjoys classical, choral, popular and jazz music and plays the trumpet. He also has a keen interest in all other extra-curricular activities.

Alastair is married to Ruth and they have two children: Josh (14) and Sam (9) currently in Years 9 and 5. He believes in high quality communication and likes to make himself accessible at drop off time and at the end of the day. He believes that school should be fun and that “academic success is a by-product of good education. This is important because children’s self-esteem in one area spills into another enabling them to express themselves and make progress.”

John Green, Headmaster said: “We are all absolutely delighted that we have been able to attract and catch Alastair, there are very exciting times ahead! We very much look forward to working with him over the coming years as he builds on the many strengths of the Prep School. Alastair will take up the reins in September 2015 but in the meanwhile, of course, School life will continue apace under the leadership of Sebastian Rees. The Prep School has flourished under Sebastian and Gillian Rees and we now look forward to a future era of further development under the dynamic and ambitious leadership of Alastair Brown.”


Jaime Pardey Represents Seaford at the National Poetry Competition

Jaime Pardey at the National Poetry CompetitionJaime Pardey (Year 11) represented Seaford College in the Semi Finals of the National Poetry Competition on January 22nd.

‘Poetry By Heart’ is a pioneering competition designed to encourage pupils aged 14-18 in England to learn and perform poetry. She recited three different poems from memory in front of a panel of six judges. She gave a rousing rendition of ‘Invicuts’ by W.E. Henly, a reflective performance of Anna Akhatova’s ‘In Memoriam,’ and an imaginative interpretation of ‘A Martian Sends a Postcard Home’ by Craig Raine. A host of other South East schools also performed poetry to a mesmerised audience in Crawley. It was a really enjoyable event with some very talented and engaging young students. Jaime equipped herself with intelligence and poise and should be highly commended for her excellent work. She was a huge credit to the school and the English Department. Lancing College won this event, but we have high hopes for next year’s event!

Holly Graham’s Aspirations for Life after A Levels

Hollyweb1Holly Graham is studying for her A Levels at Seaford College and is definitely one to watch for the future.  She is planning an exciting career as an opera singer and hopes to travel all over the world.  Holly was also lucky enough to sing the solo at the Gary Barlow concert that Seaford College Choir performed at last year.

Name Holly Graham

Age 18

Hometown Shackleford, Surrey

Summary of achievements

I study at the Junior Royal Academy of Music and was presented with the prestigious Elton John Award. At the 2014 Godalming Festival, I achieved 1st in German Lieder, 2nd in Italian Aria, 2nd in Sacred song and 1st in Oratorio. I went on to win the overall Opera trophy for adults and juniors. I won a Music Scholarship at Seaford College, where I was fortunate to be the lead singer at the Gary Barlow concert in Bournemouth last year. I have also won the Fine Art prize and Most Promising Musician prize at Seaford. I have an Internship at the designer Michael Kors in New York in summer 2015, which I’m really excited about.

Tell us a bit about yourself

I’m very down to earth; my talents have evolved during my time at Seaford. Seaford has given me the freedom to flourish and let me be who I want to be. I’m passionate about music and art. I have been described as having an inner calmness when performing. I’m confident and gutsy; I have 2 brothers who made me do things if they knew I could do them e.g. jumping off of a rock on holiday. I was competitive with them, now I make myself do things that I know I’ll find challenging, I’m scared of regretting not doing something. I like to keep busy and have a get up and go personality; I have to always be busy so I fill my life with the Junior Royal Academy of Music, riding, art and running. I’m very relaxed and calm. I’m modest, not a diva, I find it odd to be idolised by younger students at Seaford. I’m not into self-promotion but understand the need for it.

What is it that inspires you?

Fashion designers, particularly Dolce & Gabbana and the opera singer Rene Fleming. I’m really inspired watching opera and ballet. My family inspire me, everyone is very creative and there are always lots of creative ideas being discussed. Seaford has a very creative environment and students, who inspire me every day at school. At the Junior Royal Academy of Music everyone wants to be there and the drive and desire of my peers is very inspiring.

Where do you see yourself in ten years?

Working as an opera singer all over the world, I’d love to make my own costumes. I’d love to combine my passion for textiles and music. I love the fact that opera in particular incorporates every art form to the extreme. The make up, wigs, costumes, lighting, programme, amphitheatre, props, set, even tickets have been designed to the highest standard. Finally the creativity in the music, instrumentalists and singers is phenomenal.

How do you like to relax in your spare time?

I don’t relax! No seriously I love riding and love horses. My horse is someone I can always talk to and I love spending time in the fresh air and countryside. It’s my zone out time for recharging. I also run which helps me relax. I find I get creative ideas during these activities.
What would be your top tip for other pupils hoping to follow in your path?

Keep every door open, try very hard at everything you do to really establish what you like and are good at. Be considerate to other people, build contacts and have as many friends as possible. If you are talented and have people on your side you’ll do well.

Follow the link to see Holly singing with Gary Barlow

Follow the link to see Holly and the choir in rehearsal with ITV Meridian filming:

Holly Singing with Gary Barlow

gary-choir-onstagegary singing tooweb











Holly Graham’s AS Textiles work

Holly Graham's AS Textiles feather dress on SashawebHolly Graham AS Textilesweb







Marija Ćirić’s Aspirations for Life after A Levels

image for SaMarija Ćirić is studying 4 A Levels at Seaford College and is definitely one to watch for the future.  She is going to study Politics and International Relations at Exeter University in September.

What is your dream job?
I would love to be a politician. I’ve grown up in a politically active family, and my country, Serbia, has had a lot of political ups and downs.

What are you doing this autumn?
I would love to go to university to study Politics and International Relations.

What do you think is the biggest challenge facing your generation?
I worry about the future employability of our generation. There are fewer jobs for young people, and not just in the UK, Eastern Europe is very affected by this problem. In the UK the gap between the poorest and the richest is widening. Not all people are given equal opportunities, and good education is not accessible for everybody.

What is the one thing that really annoys you?
What really annoys me is how young people ignore the problems around them. Young people are too focussed on their own problems, and they don’t see what’s happening in the outside world. Now we are old enough to get involved; our time is coming to be responsible for those older and younger than us. The future is very near.

If you could say one thing to the Prime Minister what would it be?
I would ask him about the solutions to problems such as the employment of young people. I think he should have a proactive approach and encourage entrepreneurs. I think the Prime Minister should make education more accessible and shorten the gap between private and state education, by raising standards in state schools.

Do you have a role model and if so who is it and why?
My role model is ex-Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindjić, who was assassinated in 2003. He was the first person to have a pro-European approach and to enforce it. He bought Serbia closer to Europe. Also, my dad, Goran Ćirić, has been in politics for the last twenty years and is the Serbian equivalent of an MP. He is in the democratic party and was the mayor of our town for four years. He was head of Post Serbia, the Serbian Royal Mail, and he is very respected for what he does.

What are you most passionate about?
I am very passionate about education and politics. I am going to an educationally challenging degree in Politics, and I want to help establish Serbia in the international arena. I’d love to go to Exeter University and then do a Masters, and after that go home and get politically active. I want to get engaged with political youth groups, and then move onto the main party.


John Doy, Head of Academic Enrichment

John Doy teaching an English lessonSeaford’s Head of English, John Doy, is also Head of Academic Enrichment and his role is to help the academically gifted to reach their full potential. In his role he coaches students through the Oxbridge application process, has set up a mentoring system allowing students to have one to one time with the Head of Department in the subject they are specialising in, and the chance to be stretched beyond the curriculum in their subject. His role is essentially to stretch the academic scholars at Seaford. Alex Hodson, Upper Sixth, who plans to read Medicine added: ‘Seaford stretches us academically but there is no pressure. I really enjoy exploring ideas with my mentor and the extra work I do beyond the curriculum is really stimulating. I feel supported to do well and achieve my full potential.’

John Doy explained that he sees his role as an SEN role (Special Educational Needs) for the Gifted & Talented students at Seaford. John Green, Headmaster said: ‘Seaford excels at providing learning enrichment at all levels. The academically gifted need to be supported and stretched to make sure they achieve their potential. The new role reflects Seaford’s ethos: to inspire personal ambition and success so that personal bests are achieved inside and outside the classroom. John has studied at Oxford University and is in a great position to guide and mentor students.’

Seaford supports Freddie Miller at both ends of the SEN spectrum. Freddie is a Gifted and Talented student, and he is applying to Oxbridge to read Physics or Maths. He is coached by John Doy and as part of the Academic Enrichment programme he has a mentor in the subjects he is specialising in. Freddie also benefits from Seaford’s Learning Support department, giving him the strategies to work with his Dyslexia.

John Doy is taking the Gifted and Talented group to Portsmouth Grammar School, for an Oxbridge Conference. He is demystifying the whole Oxbridge application process for the students. John Doy said: ‘I will guide them through what the university is looking for. All universities want to see that candidates can demonstrate an interest in their specialist subject both inside and outside the classroom’.

John Doy added: ‘we have 18 months to prepare; I make sure students are saying the right things on their application forms. Alongside their mentor, we make sure they are reading the right books and doing the right things to put them in the best position for success. We stretch students beyond the curriculum’.

Seaford identifies potential students for the programme in Year 11. These students then get the opportunity to be mentored by the sixth form students on the programme. Students feed off of one another’s enthusiasm for their specialist subjects. Teachers who are mentoring also find this extremely rewarding.

To read a profile of John Doy CLICK HERE.


Profile: John Doy, Head of English and Academic Enrichment

John DoyPosition: Head of English & Head of Academic Enrichment
Education: A Levels – English, History, French
Oxford, Mansfield College, 2:1 English Language & Literature

What did you do after graduating from university?
Initially I worked as a researcher and writer for a legal reference book. I then travelled extensively in the Middle East, before spending three hectic and enjoyable years as a live gallery producer on a TV auction channel.

When did you decide to go into teaching?
I wasn’t using my degree as much as I wanted to in my working life, so I did a PGCE at King’s College London, which led to three years teaching in a state school in Watford. After that, I went to work at The British School of Brussels and was appointed Head of Department after a couple of years. Four years later, I came back to the UK and took up my role at Seaford as Head of the English Department.

Do you think your work experience before your PGCE helps you with your teaching career?
I suppose trying to motivate a sleepy production team at six in the morning to make a pile of towels look interesting is a bit like trying to sell John Keats to Year 10.

Why do you enjoy teaching at Seaford?
There’s a lovely view from my window, and the staff are interesting and friendly. I like the range of students you get here too; it’s satisfying working with really bright students but I also enjoy helping those students who have struggled with English in the past. Also, I grew up in Sussex and always loved the South Downs so I feel very at home here.

What do you do to relax in you spare time?
I love music and used to play in bands, so I like going to gigs with my friends. I still write songs for fun – finding people to play them is a challenge I’m working on. I have two small sons now so most of my spare time is spent messing around with them. I like reading and watching films too.

To read about John Doy’s role as Head of Academic Enrichment CLICK HERE.

Year 9 create their own book, Fear

Fearp1LRA group of talented students in Year 9 have created their own book. Fear is a shortlisted collection of poetry and prose written and illustrated by the students. George Vernon teaches the class English and said: “The class is a really creative and expressive group. It’s made up of a group of students that don’t naturally pick up and pen & pencil due to their processing difficulties”. George wanted to tap into their creativity and allow them to experience different forms of poetry and writing. He wanted them to see their work in print and understand the process of writing, editing, illustrating and producing their own book. The theme of fear came from exploring their personal horrors and anxieties, then expressing their fears in the most effective and creative form.  George said: “They really needed to explore the darker sides of their imagination. The students found it very liberating to have the freedom to express this side of themselves”. Hugo Wilson wrote the piece “Above and Beyond the Call of Duty” and dedicated it to his Great Grandfather, who was stabbed in the eye by a German during the battle of the Somme in 1914. Hugo said: “He was left on the battlefield to die but was then rescued by his pals. He was very brave and told me some great stories”.

Follow this link to read Fear 

If you would like a copy of the book please email George Vernon

Seaford College Prep Academic, Music, Sport and Art Scholarships for September 2015

11+ Sportweb1Seaford College Prep School is delighted to invite applications for Academic, Music, Sport and Art Scholarships for September 2015. This will complement the College’s existing 13+ and 16+ Scholarships. Exams and assessments for 11+ awards will take place in February 2015. All 11+ candidates will be interviewed by the Prep School Headmaster, Mr Sebastian Rees. The Scholarship award available is £500 per annum. IMG_3981web2

Please contact the Prep School ( or on 01798 867893) for more details.

Seaford College A Level Law Success

law photo 1webSeaford College is broadening the curriculum and offering A Level Law for the first time this year. In September the course had 2 students and this has grown in popularity to over 10. Tony Philips, Head of Year 13, History & Law teacher said: “The students are really enjoying the challenges of studying Law”. Ellie Syrett chose Law because she was interested in doing something new, she said: “The course is brand new for everyone; there is something nice about all starting the course on the same page”. Ellie is considering a law photo 2webcareer in Animal Rights Law. She said: “Mr Philips is great; he has a different approach to teaching. His style is more of a lecture than a lesson, he treats us like grownups and that makes us want to work to the best of our ability”.

Joe Doyle wants to produce music and sees the benefits of studying Law. He said: “Law is very useful in any career choice. Mr Philips is brilliant, he’s friendly and his approach makes you want to learn. He makes Law reallylaw 3web interesting”.

Seaford College’s GCSE Students Celebrating an Increase of 11% A*-B

Johnweb1Students at Seaford College are, for a second week in a row, celebrating achieving an 11% increase in top grades A*-B, leading to a record number of pupils heading into the sixth form. Headmaster, John Green, who took up the post last September said: “I’m very pleased with the progress and academic strategy we have put in place this year enabling all our students to achieve excellent results. Alex Hodson, from Yapton, has achieved 9A*s and 2 As, Emma Brown from Pulborough, has achieved 8A*s and 2 As, Finn Clancy from Pulborough, has achieved 7A*s and 2 As and Ellie Hitchcock from Liss has achieved 5A*s and 5 As. We look forward to welcoming back a large number of Seaford students in September, into the Sixth Form and wish them every success as they continue their studies at Seaford.” John, Ellie&Alex
The A*-C pass rate has increased by 6% year on year. The A* pass rate has increased 4% and is the highest it’s been since 2008. These both buck the National trend which shows an increase of less than 1%.

John Green said: ”in a current environment of an undoubted toughening up of academic standards these results are particularly pleasing. Many children have achieved academic personal bests spurred on by our new Challenge Grade system and our excellent teaching. Our English and English Literature are particularly impressive, where many of our pupils have surpassed their Challenge Grade. As a proud non-selective school our results indicate that our academic core is strengthening year on year enabling pupils to gain their academic personal bests. In conjunction with the improved A Level results, this demonstrates that Seaford is continuing to gather academic momentum”.

John&JohnDoyThe “sharp fall in English”* GCSE grades experienced nationally is not reflected in the Seaford results. John Doy, Head of  English said: “In English and English Literature we have had amazing results.  Hudson Greig  (from Guildford) and Alex Hodson both achieved 100% in English Literature which is phenomenal.  Hudson is a very talented boy and will take our new Creative Writing A Level. It’s his ambition to be a writer and his creative writing is amazing. I’m looking forward to reading what the students write. Our success is down to the hard work of teachers, lots of application from the students, pastoral care and the senior management team, it really is a team effort. When everyone pushes in the right direction the students achieve their potential”. Alex Hodson was really “happy and surprised” with his 9A*s and 2 As and said that: “Mrs White, my English teacher, gave us lots of work to do and really motivated us, she is really on the case and pushes us to succeed. Science and Maths is more my thing so it’s my 2 A*s in English which I’m really proud of. I’m studying Maths, Further Maths, Physics, Chemistry at A Level and I would like to go to Oxford or Cambridge”.

Owen Godfrey, from Brook Surrey, has achieved 3A*s, 2As and 3 B’s. He achieved A* in both English and English Literature and the results are a great personal achievement. Owen said: ”I’m really happy and I got better than my Challenge grades. My English teacher is really motivating, just fantastic! When I came in this morning I heard on the radio that English has been marked harder this year so I was really worried. I wanted to live up to expectations.” Owen has also been an active member in the Seaford community service programme, the choir and drama. He added: “it’s very rewarding volunteering at Lavington Stud, I really felt I’d helped out and it’s nice to feel you helped the animals.”

Seaford College prides itself on small class sizes and the individual focus and attention it provides for all students at all levels of ability. Breege Jinks, Deputy Head Academic, said “We pride ourselves on our Value Added and Jack Jamieson, fromJGjamiesonLR Sidlesham, is a great example of what can be achieved. He got 3A*s, 5As and a B”. Mrs Jamieson said: “prior to our data interview in year 9, Jack was on a trajectory to get C grades. Mrs Jinks used National data to predict that if Jack worked really hard he could get straight As. Jack found that once teachers say you could get As it really inspires you.” Mr Jamieson added: “Mrs Jinks has been very instrumental in inspiring Jack, the whole new management team is very very strong. Jack also benefitted from the course Seaford ran on how to revise. Jack is a visual learner and it gave him different ideas and he was able to align his revision style. It was a fantastic investment from the school. It was great that parents had an evening to see what they had learned so we could really support them with revision”. Jack will study Chemistry, Geography, Maths and Physics at A Level and is planning to be a Renewable Energy Engineer. He said: “it’s an up and coming sector and with gases running out it needs good students to go into the industry”. Mr Jamieson added: “it needs smart people to push it forwards, Jack is already talking to Charlie Dunhill a Renewable Energy expert and Charlie is planning to come into the school next year to present a bike that makes hydrogen to the students.” Jack has also just come back from a Community Project in Ecuador where he spent 13 hour days cementing a water tank, carrying heavy bamboo through the rain forest for a community centre and helped make a mud temple. To join the project you need to raise funds. Jack raised over £2,000 in sponsorship by taking part in cycling and running challenges, the Three Peaks Challenge, odd jobs in the local community and selling his drum kit (which he says his mum didn’t complain about!).

John Green added: “Seaford inspires personal ambition and success so that personal bests are achieved inside and outside the classroom. This is why I love Seaford – because our flight path is unique.” Many of Seaford’s students achieve high academic results and excel in extracurricular activities. Emma Brown with her 8A*s and 2As is a strong all-rounder in sport. Alex Hodson, with 9A*s and 2 As is a great sportsman and a 1st XI cricketer. Ellie Hitchcock, with 5A*s and 5 As is a strong all-rounder and excels in sport, the choir and drama. She performed to great acclaim in Oh What a Lovely War! She is hoping to go into medicine. Tom Newman, from Yapton, has achieved 6A*s, 3 As and an B and has just returned from the community project in Ecuador. Holly Bassett, from Itchenor Chichester, achieved 4 A*s, 2 As and a B, despite competing in the World Paddle Surfing Championships in Nicaragua. She spent 2 weeks competing and came back just a John&Hollyday before her exams started. Holly said: “I was so jet lagged when I got back. I had my Chemistry and Geography exam on the same day and fell asleep in my Geography exam”. Despite this Holly got an A* in Geography. Holly took a lot of revision with her but was up a 5am every day so could only rely on the audio tapes she had taken with her to revise. Holly added: “I’m really happy, English is the subject I found the hardest and I’m really pleased I got an A* in both English and English Literature. When I was away my teachers sent me emails and extra prep work. They also gave me extra revision lessons before I went away.”

James Passam, Deputy Head Senior School, said: ”many of our students take up bespoke academic programmes that enable them to succeed. Finn Clancy is a great example, gaining 7A*s and 2As. He joined Seaford from Hurst last September and we have successfully managed his academic transition with impressive results. A particular strength at Seaford is the dedication of teachers and the time they give to prioritising pastoral care, which underpins each pupil’s academic progress. This a unique selling point for Seaford and something we are very proud of. The intervention and support the team provides each individual pupil enables them to develop the confidence to succeed and achieve their academic personal bests. I wish all of the students going into the Sixth Form every success and I’m sure they will join the band wagon of successful students that gained a place at top Russell Group Universities, following the impressive A Level results last week”.

Seaford offers a unique environment and inspiring personal ambition & success is part of its DNA.


• * BBC website 21 August 2014

Seaford College’s A Level Students Buck the National Trend with an Increase of 11% A*-B

a level results 2014 private school in sussex Students at Seaford College are celebrating achieving an 11% increase in top grades A*-B, this has led to an increase in those securing their first choice university places. Seaford has successfully bucked the National trend which has seen A*-B grades fall by 0.5%. Headmaster, John Green, who took up the post last September, said: “I’m proud of what all our students have achieved and we have a significant number of pupils heading to a Russell Group University. Ian Duff has achieved 3A*s and 2 As and is heading to Durham to read Physics; Dragana Zoric has achieved 2A*s and 2As and will read Aerospace Engineering at the University of Bristol, Oliver Gatland has achieved an A* and 3As and will read Physics at Exeter and Petra Ukota has achieved an A* and 2As and will read History at the University of Edinburgh. We wish them every success as they continue their studies.”

Ian Duff said he was “elated when he opened his results” and he praised the Seaford Maths department saying “a lot of hard work has gone into my results, the Maths departments teaching offers fantastic support which is why I’ve achieved these amazing grades”. Oliver Gatland added: “I’m really happy; you have to put in the hard work yourself buSteve, Ian & Oliver webt Mr Kettlewell & Mr Rollinson put in a lot of effort to support us.” Steve Kettlewell, Head of Maths, was very proud and said to the boys: “I was really thrilled that you held your own in the last few questions in the Further Maths paper “. Steve went on to explain that “when you are trying to predict A* and A grades it’s always in your mind that questions at the end of the paper are deliberately challenging. The examiners are trying to catch you out and want to see candidates using their intuition to make the correct decision and approach when answering. You can teach the skills, and they are tough techniques to master, but on the day it’s also down to the student to rely on their intuition. Ian Duff achieved 100% in his Maths and 94% in Further Maths which is phenomenal.”

John Green and Seaford A level studentsSeaford College prides itself on small class sizes and the individual focus and attention it provides for all students at all levels of ability. We pride ourselves on our Value Added. John Green said: ”at Seaford we have a very strong academic core and via our new Challenge Grade system, children are encouraged to secure academic personal bests whilst still keeping a smile on their faces!” Maddy Wright is off to study Sport & Physical Education at Cardiff Metropolitan University having exceeded their entry requirements. Maddy has benefitted from the Challenge Grade system and said: “I’d never have thought I could achieve so many UCAS points but when my tutor started discussing targets with me, that’s when the Challenge Grades system inspired me.” Breege Jinks, Deputy Head Academic, said “Maddy has shown real tenacity to succeed. Like many of our students, when appropriate interventions are expertly employed, students are able to develop skills and expertise that enable them to achieve continued success”. Continue reading

John Green is Celebrating a Dynamic 1st Year as Headmaster of Seaford College

IMG_0573 54thiswebJohn Green joined Seaford College as Headmaster in September 2013. Amazingly Seaford in its 130 year history has only had 8 headmasters, with John Green being the 9th. John Green is already making his mark on Seaford History with the ambitious changes he has put in place in just one academic year. Reflecting on his first year, John Green said: “in a good school children need to feel valued, trusted and respected. Children also need to enjoy school and have fun. At Seaford we have a very strong academic core and via our new and unique Challenge Grade system, children are encouraged to secure academic personal bests – whilst still keeping a smile on their faces! Prospective and current parents always say how happy our children are. At Seaford we look after our children and inspire personal ambition and success so that personal bests are achieved inside and outside the classroom. This is why I love Seaford – because our flight path is unique to other schools.”
John is a good communicator and listener and is ambitious for every pupil. He maintains a high visibility throughout the ellie hitchcock challenge gradeWEBschool and prides himself on the fact that he can name every pupil. His sincere and personable style has led to successful Parent Focus Group meetings and an emphasis on open communication. He has successfully restructured the Senior Management team with increased attention and focus on the Prep, Middle & Senior School. With the appointment of James Passam & William Yates as deputy Heads, each of Seaford’s key stages has great leadership in place to drive success.
Academically John has introduced Challenge Grades to enable every child to achieve their full potential and to secure academic personal bests. Also new this year, the Year 9 Creative Carousel has enriched pupils’ learning, enabling students to have creative taster sessions and explore potential interests. In the Arts, Seaford has had 4 major productions, with the Prep School performing Peace Child and Honk! and the Senior School presenting Macbeth and Oh! What a Lovely War. The performances have rivalled the West End and represent the dedication and hard work of students and teachers. Musically Seaford had a record year of success at Godalming and the choir had the amazing opportunity to support Gary Barlow in concert.
John set out at the beginning of the year to improve careers advice. This led to a very successful everywoman conference, a careers fair and talks by leading business leaders. These have led to pupils gaining internships at Incredibull and IBM.
In sport, Seaford College is the Sussex U18 rugby champions for a second year in a row. Within the space of a month Seaford Boys’ Indoor Hockey team went from qualifying in the top 10 in the country to being ranked third nationally. Girls’ hockey is going from strength to strength. There have been notable Senior & Prep Netball performances with the 1st Prep Netball team winning the Annual West Sussex West Netball Tournament. The summer term has already seen great performances in Cricket, Athletics and Rounders. One of his ambitions was to see girls’ cricket become a popular sport at Seaford and in their inaugural outing the team came second against more experienced schools. The Tennis Academy, Shooting & Golf are all proving to be successful Saturday morning pursuits.
Seaford has had great success in the Young Enterprise competition and in debating. With an increased emphasis of giving back to the community John has also extended Seaford’s involvement with local community projects such as Petworth House and Brent Lodge Animal Hospital. Seaford also won the Charlton Chase for the first time in 20 years. Seaford’s outdoor pursuits are thriving including a strong participation in the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme.
John has embraced modern technologies with the introduction of a Parent Portal (instant access to progress reports), Prep Diary (enabling parents to see the prep work that has been set), and improvements to the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) and Wifi over the expansive campus. John has also focused on networking within the local community and Seaford has had record breaking numbers at its 5 Open Mornings, illustrating Seaford’s buoyant and strengthening reputation within the educational arena. Seaford’s ability to offer a breadth of choice to meet the needs of the whole family and its focus on the individual is proving to be very alluring. It’s been a busy first year with John successfully managing the transition of Seaford into a modern and dynamic College.