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Merchant Taylors’ Company Associated Schools’ Concert 2016

Band rehearsal MTC concert, Liverpool

I had a really fun time in Liverpool over the weekend. It felt amazing to be a part of the Merchant Taylors' schools coming together to perform. My personal favourite part of the trip was going to the Beatles Museum on Sunday. It was fun to learn about the band. Seeing Leon and June from 'Gogglebox' in the hotel was an added bonus!

- Alex, Year 7

We thoroughly enjoyed our trip to Liverpool. Outside of rehearsals, we had the opportunity to socialise with the other ten Merchant Taylors' schools at the Metropolitan Cathedral, where we had the option to perform and get to know each other.

The bus journeys were as you can imagine - very loud and as Mr Lyons described, "like a Glee bus!" Overall, it was a fantastic trip that was greatly appreciated by all.

- Ellie & Yaz, Year 12

The trip to Liverpool was fantastic experience which I will carry with me forever. Arriving at the Merchant Taylors' schools, the members of the music departments managed the daunting task of pulling together an orchestra and choir consisting of students from eleven different schools from across the United Kingdom, most of whom had never met. Having never played in an orchestra larger than around ten people, this was something of a step up, and learning to play Puccini's Messa Di Gloria was challenging but so rewarding.

We were able to play in the Liverpool Philharmonic hall which made us all face fears and stage fright, but eventually, the exhilaration overcame all other emotions and we all showed just what Wallingford School can do with a rendition of Feeling Good better than we could ever have imagined. Working together with other Merchant Taylors' associated schools, the Puccini piece went seamlessly and there was a real sense of achievement among everyone.

- Edd, Year 13

Geography Field Trip

Group photograph on beach

On the 20th February, the AS Geography students, accompanied by Miss Lee, Miss Walker and Miss Cook, set off (after a small minibus meltdown!) on the annual geography field trip to the Margam Discovery Centre near Port Talbot in Wales for a few days of 'geography fun'!

Read more: Geography Field Trip

A Level Decision

Sixth formers studying

Please see the letter below from Mrs F Lewis (Assistant Headteacher) and Mr N Lamb (Assistant Headteacher, Director of 6th Form) regarding changes to A Level provision coming into affect September 2016.

(The letter has been updated to include the Design and Technology subjects and a change to BTEC Health and Social Care.)

PDF A Level Decision letter


ILYMUN conference group photo

On the 20th of January, a few members of our Model United Nations group departed on a trip to attend the ILYMUN conference in Lyon.

After numerous changes and 8 hours of travelling, we finally arrived at Lyon- Part-Dieu station, where we were pleasantly greeted by our host families. On arrival at their homes, everyone was tired from a day of travelling, so jumped at the chance of a good night's sleep.

Thursday began with sightseeing in Lyon, strolling through the city streets, visiting several bakeries on our way. We began lobbying in the afternoon in the General Assembly, where all countries convened, wrote clauses and attempted to gain support for them. We then divided into our separate committees, and lobbied further. The subject for the convention was Climate Change, with many references to the recent UN conference in Paris.

Student at ILYMUN conference Student delegate for Laos

On Friday, we enjoyed a belated opening ceremony, with speeches in both French and English, not to mention a notable junior choir. We then reconvened in our separate committees, providing innovative solutions to climate change related issues. Lucy represented the USA in the Human Rights committee where she stood her ground on a number of issues, including the protection of small indigenous tribes from the effects of global warming. As the delegate for Saudi Arabia in the Development committee, Poppy, came head to head with everyone, but particularly France and China!

After 2 days of diplomatic discussions, it was time to let our hair down at the 'year 6 disco'-esque party, where we left the lobbying aside to make some less formal international relations.

On Saturday, having recovered from the party, it was our final opportunity to have our voices heard. The human rights committee managed to save a pacific island from climate change, and the development committee successfully created a free trade bloc between nations which lowered their CO2 emissions. This was followed by debating within the General Assembly, where Iraq showed particular strength against the USA.

Student delegates ILYMUN

The closing ceremony saw further speeches in both English and French, congratulating us for our efforts to combat global warming and climate change - a display of our interests in the wider world.

We left the following day, taking the same route we had to get there, overcoming some barriers on the Paris metro as our train was cancelled due to a strike. We arrived back at Didcot Parkway at around 5:30 pm, ready for the new week ahead.

Students at ILYMUN Year 12 student at ILYMUN

All those involved believed it was extremely rewarding and helped many of us gain confidence regarding public speaking. The most challenging aspect for many of us, was being able to adopt the views of the country we were representing and not let our personal views infiltrate into the debate. The current Year 11 and Year 12 are looking forward to experiencing the conference next year and the current Year 13s were happy that their final ILYMUN experience was such a positive one. Those lucky enough to go on the trip would like to extend their gratitude to the individuals that helped in getting us to the conference, especially Mrs Mummery and Mr Harpin, for organising such a rewarding trip.

- Poppy & Sean, Year 12

Casual group photography in Lyon

Wallingford is Oxfordshire’s top performing school - again!

Student & parent Student & parent

We are rather proud of this achievement. There are a lot of great schools in the county, so to be anywhere near top is worth celebration.

I don't think any teacher gets up in the morning inspired to secure a league table place for one group of students, fun though it is to be top for a while. What makes the staff here work so incredibly hard is the feeling that we are helping as many as possible reach their potential. We are in the top 1% of the country for the value we add to ALL students. This means winning awards for the work we do with Pupil Premium students, while 36% of all GCSEs are A or A*. We really do have a case for being one of the highest performing schools in the country.

Student & parent Student & parent

The students get a lot of credit, and can enjoy their results. The teachers also deserve huge praise for the hours of hard, unglamorous labour that sits behind their terrific teaching. However, I would like to make special mention of the parents of Wallingford School students. They are so supportive of our high expectations and work hard to get their children to be conscientious when even the best of teenagers can be challenging at times. We receive wonderful support from families with children of all abilities and from all backgrounds, which makes our jobs so much easier.

Perhaps one results day there will be a headline celebrating the tremendous achievements of the parents who support a successful school. I doubt it, but it would be deserved. From those of us who are lucky enough to work with your sons and daughters: thank you. We appreciate your children and understand how hard you work to make them such a pleasure to teach, and the results we achieve here possible.

- Mr Willis, Headteacher

Oxford Times story

Department of Education performance tables



School Uniform

Year 10

Thank you to all of our parents for their continued support with uniform. At this time of year a lot of our students are growing out of uniform and we would ask that parents double check that skirt length remains at the knees and that boys' trousers continue to be full length.

In addition to the usual suppliers of school uniform, the School Uniform Shop can be accessed through the school website. We really appreciate your support with this matter.

Year 7 PiXL Edge Launch 2016

PiXL Edge illustration

We would like to welcome all Year 7 Parents to a launch evening for the PiXL Edge programme on Thursday 21st January from 6.30 – 7.30pm, in the main school hall.

This is a combined event where we will be presenting 70 of our Year 8 students with certificates for completing their Apprentice level of the PiXL Edge programme.

What is PiXL Edge?

PiXL Edge is a programme that is becoming increasingly well-known and respected around the country and enable students to develop skills and attributes identified by employers as being important when students move into employment or further education. It is a modern, interactive, online programme that recognises the achievements of students as they complete selected tasks. Students are supported by teachers within school as they set about accomplishing challenges in one of the five skill/attribute areas.

For more information please follow the link:


New A Level Course - Government and Politics

We are offering a new course, Government and Politics, to students starting Sixth Form in September 2016. Download the course outline below.

PDF Government & Politics

Other information about joining Wallingford School Sixth Form can be found here.


Year 12 Assembly - 15th January

Year 12 Assembly

In our Year 12 assembly we were introduced to Ella's foster mum, Trisha, who had come in to speak to us about assumptions, stereotypes and prejudice.

She did this by presenting a number of different images of individuals and asked us to say one word that represented each person. The reactions to the images were stereotypical: chav, nerd, terrorist, slut, etc. We were then asked to value each person from 0 to 10.

At the beginning of the discussion, members of Year 12 were more opinionated and less accepting. However, towards the end individuals were questioning the concept of rating people's value and argued, "Why are we putting a limit on how much people are valued?"

It was clear that Trisha's aim was to make us think before we judge someone on their appearance which as a result can limit a person's aspirations. Overall the assembly allowed us to realise that stereotypes aren't realistic and there is more than one word to describe / associate an individual with.

Trisha showed us that Ella has proven that stereotypes and assumptions are false due to her being just as able as other students to experience an education in a normal school environment and accomplish other goals.

- Morgan, Year 12

Wallingford School Association Social Evening

Please come and join us for our informal WSA Social Evening and find out how fundraising helps support our children at school.

It will be held on Wednesday 13th January 2016 at 7.30pm in the 6th Form Common Room. We look forward to seeing you there.

A selection of events our WSA support each year below...

School production Founders' Day

Spring Concert Founders' Day

Wallingford Schools Academy Trust is an exempt charity and a company limited by guarantee.

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