It’s the week before school opens in Liberia, and staff in Cecelia A. Dunbar School in Todee district are preparing for something completely new. For the past few years, the school’s problems have been typical of Liberia’s education system: ‘ghost’ teachers collect a government pay-cheque without coming to work, children struggle to make sufficient progress in class, and even the simplest of equipment is scarce – “the children bring their own chairs to school” says principal Ezequiel.
On Thursday 15 September, Alex Wilmot-Sitwell - Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s President for Europe, the Middle East and Africa - visited Ark Burlington Danes Academy in west London for a Q&A session with sixth-formers. During the hour-long session, he and the students discussed topics ranging from career opportunities in banking to issues facing the UK and the world of finance.
Today we are welcoming a new school to our network. Ark Paddington Green Primary Academy in west London has opened its doors to local children aged 4-11. The school is situated between Edgware Road, Paddington railway station and picturesque Little Venice. The school building has great facilities for young children, including a woodland play area.
This July saw 600 Ark students performing in the eighth annual Ark Music Gala at London’s Barbican Centre. The gala offers a glimpse into the wider world of musical activity taking place across our network of 34 schools.
Ark Brunel Primary Academy is celebrating being awarded an "Outstanding" rating by Ofsted - just four years after its predecessor school was rated "Inadequate".
Inspectors praised the school for its outstanding teaching and curriculum, as well as examplary behaviour from pupils. In the executive summary of the report, Ofsted inspectors wrote: “Parents say that the school is ‘amazing’, and inspectors agree”.
Grammy award-winning British rock band Mumford & Sons are auctioning a limited edition, autographed banjo to raise money for Ark Putney Academy’s music department.
Deering Banjo custom designed a banjo for each country the band visited during their sold out May tour. Mumford & Sons are auctioning off one of these banjos in support of Ark Putney’s innovative music programme. They hope the auction will raise £5,000.
Ark Schools Chair Paul Marshall has been awarded a knighthood for services to education in the latest Queen’s Birthday Honours.
Marshall, who was one of the co-founders of Ark, was recognised not only for his work with the high-performing network of schools, but his impact on education in England more generally.
A new report authored by Ark, released and published in conjunction with independent think tank Education Policy Institute, formerly CentreForum, warns that government policy changes designed to help working families could have the unintended consequence of making quality early years education less available to disadvantaged communities.