Fulham School is to offer sixth form education for the first time, as part of a multi-million-pound transformation.
Under plans outlined by new headmaster, Will le Fleming, the school will open a new senior school campus in Chesilton Road, intended to provide education to 220 students. Among the students will be a new sixth form intake, as the school seeks to widen its educational remit.
In preparation, the school has applied for accreditation to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) as the basis of sixth-form study.
“This is a powerful next step for Fulham School,” said le Fleming. “We launched with just 12 students around 20 years ago. We now cater to 700 on two sites and will soon be welcoming even more as we open our third campus.”
Fulham School opened its senior school in 2017, joining the well-established pre-prep and prep. With the design of the new campus currently being finalised, Fulham Prep will temporarily welcome the new intake later this year; the full move to the new site is set to take place during the next academic year.
The new senior school is just one element of an ambitious plan by AIR Architects, with the prep and pre-prep schools also set to have state-of-the-art facilities installed. Major works include the introduction of a new kitchen and dining room at the pre-prep, and an art studio, dance and fitness studio, science and music labs, and a performing arts venue at the prep. There will also be a new library space, including indoor treehouses for pupils to curl up with a good book.
The changes are not restricted to the buildings, with the new head implementing a brand-new curriculum programme – Fulham Core – at the school.
“Fulham Core will sit at the heart of what we do,” said le Fleming, “teaching our children all the skills they need to thrive and find purpose in the modern world.
“Our children will learn to make up their own minds about the world beyond the school gates and the potential opportunities and barriers they will encounter; that there is no fear in failure, that they should not be afraid to falter, learn and try again.”
“We want our pupils to show initiative and independence in their learning,” added the head. “We want them to learn beyond and between subjects, making connections and grasping the significance and purpose of their academic disciplines. That is why we are passionate about our application to offer the IBDP as part of a balanced curriculum complementing GCSEs.
“The building works are supportive of our educational vision. The new library and technology we’ll offer boosts our pupils’ independent research skills. And through production in the performing arts venue they’ll learn the benefits of staging a successful show, whether that’s on stage or working behind the scenes. Putting themselves on the line, supporting the team, working to a fixed deadline – all essential life skills.”