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Welcome to Charles Darwin

Choosing a secondary school is perhaps the most important educational decision a family has to make. I am confident that at Charles Darwin we provide an excellent educational experience for all pupils as our growing reputation in the area and our Ofsted report confirms. Last year we were heavily oversubscribed and the demand for places this year promises to be even higher.

My philosophy for education is based on a blend of proven traditional educational values together with the best from our more recent and improved understanding of how students access learning and are motivated to do so. This philosophy has been affirmed and strengthened over my time in teaching.

Latest News

Headlines - 04/04/2014

Biggin Hill Primary School [BHPS]

On Tuesday and Wednesday this week we held the interviews for the Headteacher post for BHPS. The process for the interviews over the two days was a particularly gruelling one for the candidates involving two panel interviews, a written exercise, two presentations, an assembly and a final interview. At the end of the final day the Governors (members of the Interim Academy Board and the CDAT Strategic Board) decided to appoint James Ellis to this post. James is currently Head of School at the East Wickham Primary Academy in Welling.
My thanks to everyone involved in organising and facilitating the two days and particularly to Mrs McGregor and Mrs Hodgkinson for their detailed organisation, to Mrs Rees and Mrs Kearney for their insightful observation of the assemblies and to the panel members: Mark Ace, Dolores Bray Ash, David Dilling, Helen Hartley, Sue Meckiff, Spencer Roberts, Mervin Sharp, Sue Wade and Paul Woolfenden who fulfilled their role so assiduously.
Now that we have made this substantive appointment, the Primary School can move forward in earnest to the next phase of its development and progress towards full recovery.

Sunil Chotai

Headlines - 28/03/2014

On Tuesday, we had the Year 11 work reviews for many of our pupils, although I was not there myself it was, by all accounts, an excellent and very useful evening. These evenings are of course very important for our students who at this time of pressure and stress need a coaching/mentoring type conversation to help them to raise their levels of motivation.

My thanks to all involved particularly to all the students who attended and their families and the following members of staff. Ms Kelly, Mr Miller, Mr Duncan, Mrs Pitt, Miss Dunmore, Miss Magee, Mrs Shooter, Miss Currie, Mr Lamb, Mr Watson, Mrs Quinn, Ms Edwards, Miss Walters and Miss Endean for giving up their time for this important evening.

Sunil Chotai

School Closure - 26/03/2014

Please remember that school will be closed on Wednesday 26th March to years 7-10 due to the industrial action.

School will be open as normal to years 11,12 and 13

Headlines - 21/03/2014

Steve Brown visits
On Wednesday we had the pleasure of a visit by Steve Brown, captain of the Great Britain Olympic Wheelchair Rugby team. Steve, whose achievements include leading the GB team in wheelchair rugby at the 2012 Summer Paralympics contributed to several events running in school as part of his post-Olympics ambassadorial work and to mark Sport Relief within our school.
Steve gave a talk to Years 8 and 9 during assembly, a talk that was considered by students and staff alike as being truly inspirational. My thanks to Steve Brown of course and also to Mr Simpson and the PE department for organising Steve's visit: it clearly had a very positive impact on many of our students.

NUT industrial action
A significant number of colleagues have informed me that they will be joining the action on Wednesday 26 March as part of a national industrial action by the National Union of Teachers.
Unfortunately in these circumstances, we cannot guarantee the safety and wellbeing of all our students. Given the importance of their studies in the run up to exams, the school will be open as usual for all pupils in Years 11, 12 and 13. School will however be closed to students in Years 7, 8, 9 and 10 who should study at home, using resources on the school website and focusing on coursework where possible.
I apologise for any inconvenience but my main concern must be the safety of our students.

Sunil Chotai

Headlines - 14/03/2014

Potential industrial action on 26 March 2014
You will no doubt have heard in the news that members of the NUT union recognised by the Council have voted in favour of strike action in connection with a national dispute with the Secretary of State for Education over adverse changes to pensions, workload, conditions of service, including pay and pay progression and job loss.
The action may have an impact in our school in that we may not be able to admit all pupils on that day. I am currently gathering information on behalf of the governing body about the number of staff who will be taking part in the action. Once the impact has been assessed I will write to inform you of any adjustments that will be necessary.
I thought it would be helpful to let you know as early as possible that unfortunately it may not be possible to admit your child on that day, so that you have an opportunity to consider alternative arrangements should these be necessary.

3G Application
Finally after more than two years of hard work getting together a proposal for the re-development of our astro-turf, after drafting, redrafting, costing, analysing, finding partners and generally fussing and worrying we have managed to submit the school.s application for a third generation (3G) football pitch. If successful this will enable the school to upgrade the existing astro-turf to a more modern surface with better flood lighting.
The application which was submitted online last week has involved many hours of work for John Burtonshaw who has used his considerable powers to forge links with partner clubs, the FA and various other stakeholders. Working alongside John, Mervin Sharp one of our governors has also contributed extensively to framing a solid business case. My thanks to both of them for their excellent work
We will probably receive news of the outcome in late June. (Fingers crossed.)

Sunil Chotai