LVS Ascot

Berkshire

Image for LVS Ascot

  • Category: Pre-Preparatory / Preparatory / Senior / Sixth Form
  • Pupils: Co-Education
  • Type: Day & Boarding
  • Religious Affiliation: Non-Denominational
  • Roll: 483 (Boys) 339 (Girls)
  • Age Range: 4 - 18 years
  • Founded: 1803

General Information

If you want to be sure that your child gets the best education, in an environment where they can shine, then LVS Ascot has everything you are looking for. As an independent, non-selective, co-educational school, for young people aged 4-18, LVS Ascot provides a stimulating curriculum, taught in small classes led by highly qualified and enthusiastic teachers.

Exam results in 2018 saw nearly 10% of GCSEs graded A* or equivalent, with 99% of students who achieved 5 or more A*–C grades gaining passes in both maths and English. LVS Ascot also recorded an increase in A* grades at A Level, with an overall pass rate of 98.3%.

“Families are attracted to the all-through co-education in this well-equipped, welcoming and unpretentious school. We particularly like the university campus style, modern layout and the fact that non-selectivity is seen as the starting point for success rather than a justification for its absence. The strong results prove it works”
Good Schools Guide 2018

 

Facilities

LVS Ascot is a non-selective, co-educational day and boarding school of around 870 pupils aged 4-18. It is a through-school so pupils can begin their school career at LVS Ascot at age 4 and remain there until they complete Sixth Form.

The school is located on a bright and spacious site amongst 25 acres of landscaped gardens and playing fields. As one of the most modern boarding and day schools in the UK, the purpose built campus provides excellent facilities in a safe and stimulating environment, including a sports centre with indoor swimming pool, fitness centre, sports hall and all-weather sports pitch, dance studio, medical centre, a 250 seat theatre, drama studio and a music technology suite with recording studio, plus a Learning Resource Centre and over 500 networked computer workstations.

Both Junior and Senior school follow the National Curriculum, but with the added feature of a wide range of GCSE, A Level and Vocational options, catering for each individual pupil's strengths. An extensive range of activities and extra-curricular clubs and societies underpin academic studies by providing opportunities for pupils to extend their horizons in team sports, drama and music, visits, clubs, hobbies and interests.

Pastoral care is a great priority at LVS Ascot. In LVS Ascot Senior School each child is allocated to a house, and within that to a tutor group. House Masters and Mistresses, supported by teams of tutors, oversee the welfare and development of their pupils. In LVS Ascot Junior School, pastoral care is undertaken by the children's class teacher. Students are encouraged to give of their best, whether the goal is university entrance, success at GCSE, honour on the Sports field, artistic endeavour, or coping with the trials and tribulations of growing up. LVS Ascot aims to develop ‘caring, confident citizens’ for the future.

Entrance Requirements

Current school report and interview. There is no entrance examination. Main ages for entry are 4, 7, 11, 13 and 16 years. Limited entries at other ages.

Scholarships

Academic scholarships at 11+ and 16+.

Open Days

2020. Infant and Junior School, Senior School and Sixth Form: Sat. 21st March and Sat. 16th May.

Reception: Tues. 28th April.

For details, please contact the Admissions Office on 01344 882770 or email registrar@lvs.ascot.sch.uk.

Fees

2019/2020. All per term.

Our refreshing view of school fees offers a transparent fee structure that includes lunch for day pupils and all meals for weekly and full boarders, curriculum books, exam entrance charges, sports fixture travel, personal accident insurance, the majority of after-school activities and the evening and weekend programme of activities for boarding pupils.

Infants: £3,460 (International £3,843), Junior Day: £4,144 (International £4,601), Junior Boarding: £8,854 (International £9,832)

Senior Day: £5,878 (International £6,529), Senior Boarding: £10,470 (International £11,651)

Sixth Form Day: £6,202 (International £6,632), Sixth Form Boarding: £10,897 (International £11,651)

HM Forces, Licensed Trade and sibling discounts are available.

Reports

ISI Inspection 2019
ISI Inspection 2016

School Contact Details

Headteacher: Mrs Christine Cunniffe

Contact for enquiries: Mrs M Buttimer, Registrar

LVS Ascot
London Road
Ascot
Berkshire
SL5 8DR

[t]: 01344 882770
[f]: 01344 890648
[w]: www.lvs.ascot.sch.uk

Location Description

A 26 acre site, to the west of Ascot on A329. Although set in the Berkshire countryside we are within easy reach of London, M3, M4 and M25 motorways and Heathrow and Gatwick airports.

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School News

LVS Ascot berkshire

Almost 50 students across seven year groups from LVS Ascot took to the school’s professional stage last week to

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perform the musical Kipps: The New Half a Sixpence Musical to great acclaim. Aspiring actors at the independent all-ability school performed to almost 1,000 people across four shows from Thursday 23rd to Saturday 25th January, receiving standing ovations as well as attention from those behind the West End smash hit.

Theatrical producer Cameron Mackintosh, behind hit musicals such as The Phantom of the Opera, Miss Saigon and Cats, sent a letter to the cast and staff in advance. He wrote: “I am sure the audiences will be screaming for more and that you will all have a wonderful time! Good luck to you all”.

Actor Charlie Stemp, currently starring in Mary Poppins at the Prince Edward Theatre, came to prominence playing Arthur Kipps in the West End production of Half a Sixpence and sent a video good luck message to the LVS Ascot students which you can watch and embed here: bit.ly/AscotStemp. He said: “Wishing you all the best of luck with Half a Sixpence, I hope it goes really well”.

LVS Ascot drama teacher and production director Jess Clark said afterwards: “It has been wonderful putting on this show and seeing pupils from Year 7 right up to Year 13 coming together and performing like they have with support from staff, our musical directors, drama teachers and vocal coaches”.

Being able to perform in an on-site professional theatre is a huge benefit for LVS Ascot’s performing arts students who aspire to emulate Charlie Stemp’s West End success, and one of the lead roles in the school’s production, Kristin Walker who played Ann, said: “My plan is to do musical theatre. I’m hoping to go to drama school after I finish sixth form so this has really helped me build confidence for my auditions. Working as an ensemble has helped give me practice working as a team which will be invaluable”.

You can watch and embed a short highlights film from the LVS Ascot production of Kipps: The New Half a Sixpence Musical, here: bit.ly/KippsVideo

LVS Ascot berkshire

Opening Of New Health & Well-being Centre

NHS Berkshire were guests at the opening of LVS

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Ascot’s new Health & Well-being Centre on Wednesday 20th November, and praised the school’s stance of prioritising health and mental health, which will assist in their academic progress. Karen Cridland, Director of Children, Young People & Family Services for Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, spoke to parents gathered at the event and was impressed with what she saw as the independent, all-ability school opened the new facility to support pupils physically and mentally.

Addressing parents, Karen Cridland said: “Your children are very lucky coming to this school. There is something about being in a school that looks after young people and takes mental health very seriously, and with this new facility, LVS Ascot is clearly a school which does that. The benefit to pupils is that it gives them a safe space to talk about their feelings, whether connected to physical illness or their emotional health. By feeling safe and secure it will support their academic progress and development of friendships too”.

The new centre, which provides a triage throughout the school day for all medical issues and concerns, means students from age 4 to 18 can also learn about topics such as mental health, first aid, coping strategies and ways to enhance their self-esteem. A garden area provides an opportunity for outdoor learning and activities to stimulate positive well-being.

Parents who also enjoyed a tour of the facilities on the day were equally impressed. Aarti Buchanan, whose son Luke is in Year 13 at LVS Ascot, said: “I have put four children through four different schools and none of the others have anything like this. If my eldest had had access to a facility like this it would have really benefitted her – it provides a different level of help. My youngest may move here for her A-levels, and the Health & Well-being Centre is definitely something which adds to the attraction of coming here”.

LVS Ascot has also recently opened a calming space in the heart of the school where pupils can drop in during the school day for a chat, called the Well-being Hub. Students can visit to share their feelings with the dedicated Well-being Manager and receive guidance on managing anxiety positively and learn stress-relieving techniques. Curriculum class visits allow discussions and teaching on the promotion of well-being at the Hub, which plays a vital part in assisting students to achieve their personal best.

The new Health & Well-being Centre and the Well-being Hub are part of LVS Ascot’s wider focus on pastoral care, which was rated as “excellent” by the Independent Schools’ Inspectorate on their visit in May 2019. Their report observed that “pupils demonstrate an excellent awareness of how to stay safe and they understand the importance of being physically and mentally healthy”. The school’s House structure provides comprehensive pastoral support so pupils know there is always someone to turn to, and small tutor groups give pupils access to constant support throughout the school day.

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe said: “We adopt a “whole school” approach to supporting pupils’ mental health, and a holistic package of care is available across the new centre and Well-being Hub, which has a dedicated full-time manager, to help children with the pressures of everyday life. The Health & Well-being Centre provides medical doctors and counsellors along with the opportunity to take part in meditation, origami and a range of other activities to help pupils stay relaxed and stress free”.

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

A group of thirty media studies students from LVS Ascot school enjoyed a unique learning experience at the Sky TV studios in London

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recently. The special behind the scenes visit took place on Thursday 12th September, with pupils’ voices being recorded to help Sky perfect their voice recognition software. It also allowed pupils in Years 10 to 13 to enhance their GCSE, A-level and BTEC preparations by seeing at first hand life at the busy Sky Academy studios.

The recording session saw pupils from the independent all-ability school approached to support Sky’s development of exciting new voice recognition technology by providing the voices of teenagers for them. The students were taken into soundproofed booths to be recorded talking, which will be amongst the samples used to drive technology by providing a range of pitch, tone speed and accents that will allow customers to control tvs with their voice.

Students also explored the issue of “celebrity culture and its influence”, creating their own news reports on the positive and negative sides of today’s celebrity culture, investigating the subject and then selecting props, writing a script, editing and filming.

Year 10 student Charlie Attard said: “It was an experience I will never forget as I was able to make my own news report. I really enjoyed the day and the range of careers we saw. I’m aiming to do something as interesting as that after I leave school”.

LVS Ascot Media and English teacher Sarah Melhuish said: “We were privileged to be able to inspire our students with a trip to the Sky studios in Brentford. It was an amazing insight into the practice of news reporting, and a unique experience that will stand them in good stead for their qualifications and future careers”.

Photo: LVS Ascot students learn how to create and edit their own news reports

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

Students at independent all-ability school LVS Ascot celebrated receiving their GCSE results today, with increases across the board in all grades from 7

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to 9, and a higher pass rate (grades 4 to 9) leaving the school delighted.

Nationally a third of pupils are still failing maths and English GCSEs1, but students sitting the subjects at LVS Ascot were as successful as ever, with a pass rate of over 90% in both. Whilst revising for GCSEs can be a stressful affair, LVS Ascot students had been able to ease the burden by sitting their maths exams early in January. This is a real benefit for focusing on a smaller number of exams in the summer, introduced by the school to help spread workload and very rare even amongst independent schools. Of the 105 students who sat their maths GCSE in January, over a third achieved the equivalent of an A or A* (7+).

Most students will now continue at the all-through school to study A-levels to prepare for university. A host of subjects with a 100% pass rate included IT, design & technology and art. With this year’s cohort being the first group to take reformed GCSEs in almost all subjects, a record number of appeals are anticipated nationally this year2. Consequently LVS Ascot will release confirmed GCSE grade information after the appeals process has been completed and all statistical data has been compiled.

Hector Earnshaw collected seven grade 9s, two grade 8s and a grade 7 having been at the school since joining the LVS Ascot Infant & Junior School in Year 3. He said: “I was hoping to do well but didn’t expect to do that well. I’ve really enjoyed the co-curricular opportunities here too – I didn’t do any music before I came here and I’m now doing grade 8 drums and grade 7 trumpet too”. His mum Ellie Earnshaw added: “Hector has always worked hard and been ambitious, and wants to go into medicine. LVS Ascot has given him so much support and confidence which he didn’t have when he was younger – the school has really allowed him to find his niche as it seems to do with all pupils”.

Another pupil benefiting from starting in the LVS Ascot Infant & Juniors at the all-through school is Sam Loader, whose mum was so keen for him to join from the state sector that he dropped back a year to join in Year 4 when the Year 5 classes were full. Sue Loader said: “I’d heard such good things about the school and liked that it was non-selective, mixed and with no entrance exam. The school has been amazing and to say there’s something for everyone would be an understatement, he’s been so well supported in everything he has done”. Sam’s results included three grade 8s and two grade 7s and he will now go on to study history, economics and design & technology at the school’s sixth form.

Teo Parmar-Wickham was one of three students to take advantage of LVS Ascot’s intensive GCSE course, amazingly studying and passing five GCSEs (English, maths, chemistry, physics and business) in just one year, and will be coming back to study A-levels at the school.

England under 16 hockey star Luisa Northing also collected her GCSE results today. Luisa has been capped 18 times for her country having joined in Year 5 and subsequently captained the LVS Ascot hockey team on its all-weather pitch. Despite combining a hectic club and international training schedule with her academic studies, Luisa achieved results including three grade 8s and said: “The school has been really supportive of me combining work and sport. I have been able to use the gym and swimming pool here and gain support around my studies during time set aside for enrichment and exercise which helped”.

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe said: “We are delighted with this year’s GCSE results, especially being the first complete year of the new grading system and linear exams. I am particularly pleased that as well as some outstanding high achieving  performances with many students achieving multiple 9 grades, there are many other students to whom we were able to add significant value to help them exceed their expectations”.

Picture: LVS Ascot students in jubilant mood after receiving their GCSE results

LVS AScot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

Students at independent all-ability school LVS Ascot celebrated receiving their A-Level results today, with many exceeding their expectations and receiving higher grades than

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they thought possible, with an increase in A* and A grades and a pass rate mirroring last year’s. 84% of students got into their first or second choice universities, with Warwick, Exeter, Birmingham and Southampton all confirmed destinations amongst this year’s cohort.

LVS Ascot, which was second in the table for student progress throughout A-Levels in 2018 amongst fourteen schools and colleges in Bracknell Forest, and ahead of schools including Wellington College, again saw a high level of progress amongst students. This year’s A-Level results continued to show added value, particularly in biology, history, computing and PE where there was improvement of over a third of a grade per student based on their expected grades when they began A-Levels. The school will release confirmed A-Level grade information after the remarking process has been completed and all statistical data has been compiled.

Head Boy Darshan Solanki received A* in biology and As in chemistry and maths and is now going to study veterinary medicine at the Royal Veterinary College, University of London. Parnian Mohammadi, 17, will be joining him in the capital after taking her A-levels a year early to gain a place studying law at Queen Mary University of London. Having been identified as being capable of early exam entry, the school helped her prepare to successfully earn As in English and French and a C in philosophy. She said: “The staff at LVS Ascot encouraged me and made me believe that I could step up and do my A-Levels early. They really helped me with my confidence and whilst it was tricky it meant everything fell into place”.

Sam Walkden was one of many students delighted that the progress he has made at LVS Ascot paid off with results beyond his expectations. After he won a place at University of Birmingham to study philosophy his father Roger Walkden said: “Sam joined LVS Ascot from a state school in Year 9 as he had no real aptitude for anything and was in the middle of the pack. We moved him so he could receive the attention he needed and he fitted in and knuckled down straight away. The school has helped him develop a real interest and amazing skill in philosophy so it has more than met expectations”. Sam himself added: “Without this school I’d have never have even done philosophy and now that’s the reason I’m going to Birmingham”.

Many students at the school come from military backgrounds due to the school’s HM Forces discount, and Alex Richardson was one of those collecting his results today. His As in geography and physical education and B in biology will take him to the University of Exeter to study exercise and sport sciences. Today was the culmination of nine years of boarding at the school, following in the footsteps of his older brother and sister, with the school providing stability rather than constant change. He said: “My dad is in the army and my brothers and sisters came here because of the really friendly boarding community and the forces discount. It meant I didn’t have to change schools when my dad was posted somewhere else which provided a stable environment for a long time and the chance to make some long lasting friendships”.

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe said: “With this being the first year of truly linear A-levels, making them harder as seen from the national figures, I am delighted that we have maintained our excellent pass rate and increased our top end grades. I am so pleased that the development of our sixth formers over the past two years has resulted in so many receiving fantastic news today. It is testimony to the hard work ethic of our students and teachers that we continue to be in the top two schools in the area for progress between the end of key stage 4 and A-levels, and we will continue to aim to exceed expectations and inspire independence”.

Photo:  LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe celebrates A-Level results with students

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

The Mayor of Bracknell Forest, Councillor Pauline McKenzie, enjoyed a prestigious day honouring the academic achievements of students at independent school LVS Ascot

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on Thursday 4th July. She was part of the Platform Party, joined by LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe and Chairman of the Governing Body Anita Adams amongst others, who witnessed a host of students receiving recognition for their effort and performance across the academic year.

The Mayor thanked everyone for the warm reception she received and sent her congratulations to all the students who received recognition for their achievements, saying: “It was such a pleasure to witness their joy, and so well deserved. The school has created a warm, friendly, family culture and the speeches were excellent and heartfelt”.

One of the highlights of the event was the leaving speeches of the outgoing Head Boy, Head Girl and Head of Boarding which were highly emotional. Head Girl Megan Du Toit said: “To the future Head Girls sitting in this hall today, believe in yourselves – don’t let anyone doubt you or tell you differently. Strive towards your goal and most of all, be yourselves”.

Subject prizes were presented to each year group from Year 7 to Year 13, and being an all ability school with individual development being of crucial importance too, effort prizes were awarded for the different houses in each year group. There were also outstanding academic achievement awards for years 7, 8 and 9, won by Harrison Thomas, Angelina Yu and Charlotte Reid respectively. All three had progressed from the LVS Ascot Infant & Junior School which gave them an excellent grounding, and they have capitalised on that to flourish in the senior school.

William Brooke won the Year 9 awards for Chemistry and Music and also the Cecilia Smiga Memorial Award, in memory of the school’s former Director of Music who passed away in 2013. William’s mother Vicky said of the way the school has helped him develop: “William has developed hugely with his music here. He is taking piano tuition from the Director of Music Mr Bryant, and has been given lots of opportunities to play at school events. His confidence now to just get up and perform at school events in front of hundreds of people is amazing – it is a real gift to give that to a child at such a young age”.

LVS Ascot’s Infant & Junior School had their moment to shine on Wednesday 3rd July when Celebration Day took place to mark the development and progress of the 214 pupils from Reception class to Year 6. One of the highlights of the ceremony was the Infant & Junior School prefect team and Head Boy and Head Girl for 2019/20 being announced, which was a closely guarded secret and surprised Year 5 pupils Harvey Humphrey and Chloe Celi respectively. The youngest pupils at the school were also recognised, receiving their Reception Certificates on stage in front of their proud parents, before all pupils then performed song and dance routines for their families at a special celebration barbecue in the school’s leafy grounds.

The next LVS Ascot open day is due to be held on Saturday 21st September and places can be booked on the school website.

Picture: Mayor of Bracknell Forest Cllr Pauline McKenzie with (l-r) LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe, Director of Education Ian Mullins, Chairman of LVS Ascot Governing Body Anita Adams, Chief Executive of the Licensed Trade Charity Jim Brewster and Vice Chairman of LVS Ascot Governing Body Pauline Ross

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

LVS Ascot’s Infant & Junior School is celebrating being awarded prestigious Primary Science Quality Mark status, and marked the occasion on Monday 17th June

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in explosive style by building and launching rockets to demonstrate their scientific learning. The Primary Science Quality Mark celebrates a commitment to excellence in science teaching, and this was shown to great effect on Monday when their rocket learning culminated in 33 Year 4 students launching projectiles after an engaging and immersive project.

A cross-curricular approach to the rocket project dubbed ‘Operation Bottle’ also saw the use of maths to aid with problem solving, estimating, statistics and calculating areas in the design aspect, whilst English lessons included writing weather reports, articles and a trailer for a movie about a rocket launch. With science at the centre of the project, pupils found out about forces, aerodynamics and pressure and then applied their learning and collaborated with each other to bring the subject to life through preparing their rockets for launch.

Year 4 teacher Robert Clayton said: “It has been wonderful to see the discussion and reasoning that the tasks have generated within the groups and how they have navigated obstacles to their progress. The character strengths taken from the LVS Learning Values and Skills have been prominent as they have needed lots of resilience, confidence to take a risk, empathy to work well with their peers and creativity and curiosity to engage with the idea of launching a rocket!”

The Primary Science Quality Mark (PSQM) was awarded due to the LVS Ascot Infant & Junior’s school’s commitment to, and excellence in, the subject which includes a Year 6 Able Scientists club run by senior school teachers to extend and enrich the junior scientists, and Year 5 pupils take part in the 3M Young Innovators STEM Challenge. Year 6 pupils Dominic and Harrison will be moving into the LVS Ascot senior school having been awarded academic scholarships, due in part to the scientific excellence they have shown under the Infant & Junior School’s inspiring teaching, including being part of the Able Scientists club and taking part in TED Talks (projects based around technology, entertainment and design).

Jane Turner, PSQM National Director, said: “Gaining a Primary Science Quality Mark is a significant achievement for a school. The profile and quality of science teaching and learning in each awarded school is very high”.

Picture:Year 4 pupils at LVS Ascot Infant & Junior School prepare to launch their rockets.

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

Children as young as 7 and no older than 9 staged their own theatre production this weekend as LVS Ascot broke new ground

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in placing its faith in their youngest ever cast. Amazingly, every pupil in Years 3 and 4 from the Infant & Junior School took to the stage for Hoodwinked, as over 60 of them performed, demonstrating the confidence instilled in all children from an early age at the school. Audiences of over 200 people on Friday 17th and Saturday 18th May gave them a standing ovation for their amazing achievement in the school’s professional theatre.

Previous productions at the independent all–ability school had seen Year 5 and 6 pupils acting alongside their senior school counterparts in shows such as Joseph, but this provided the ultimate test for even younger students in Years 3 and 4 to take to the stage on their own in front of hundreds of people. In a demonstration of inclusion and bringing the best out of all students, every child in those years was able to experience performing under the stage lights as part of the story based around Robin Hood.

Parent Sarah Sealey, whose 9-year-old daughter Emily Strange played Maid Marian, said: “It was written over their faces how engaged they all were with performing the show and how much they enjoyed it, which was beautiful. Emily has been given a huge amount of confidence here to go out and try different things and persevere, and she has just excelled which fills me with great pride”.

9-year-old Chloe Norgate played Will Scarlet and her mother Lindi Norgate said: “Everyone has worked so hard to make this a success and it is insane to see children that young perform so well. Chloe joined LVS Ascot four days into the September term after a very hard time at her previous school, but within a few weeks she had her personality back – they’ve done amazing things for her here. She’s done brilliantly in this show as I didn’t even know she could sing, but she also throws herself into the swimming squad, charity events and art competitions too, anything the school has to offer”.

Teacher and show director Rob Clayton said: “LVS Ascot is so well resourced with facilities such as this theatre that it provides great opportunities for students to get on stage at an early age, show resilience and gain confidence. They can go on from here to take part in a production combined with the senior school, and then grow into being part of senior school shows when they are older too so there is a real path for progression”.

Picture: Two of Maid Marian’s ladies put everything into LVS Ascot’s stage production of Hoodwinked

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshir

A group of children from the LVS Ascot Infant & Junior School have joined forces to help raise money to find a cure

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for diabetes, led by their Head Boy who was diagnosed with the condition in January. 10-year-old Oliver Ward’s news inspired him and school friends Hamilton Davies, 11, and Ella Lovejoy-Cornelius, 9, to sign up to the One Million Steps Challenge to raise money for diabetes UK. Having begun with a target of raising £500 they have already raised over three times that amount and are still aiming to gain more sponsorship before the summer.

The young friends’ quest is to complete one million steps each from 1st July to 30th September and they have already received celebrity support on Twitter from England rugby player Henry Slade and Grantchester and McMafia star James Norton, both of whom also have Type 1 diabetes like Oliver.

Oliver had gone to the doctor in January to investigate as he was showing symptoms of the four Ts of Type 1 diabetes – being tired, thirsty, getting thinner and needing the toilet more. Tests showed his blood sugar level was dangerously high and he was taken by ambulance to Frimley hospital where he was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. His initial shock and sadness was soon replaced by a determination to do something positive. Oliver said: “When I found out about my diabetes I was upset, and even more upset to find out there isn’t a cure. My friend Hamilton knew how I was feeling and when he saw about the million steps challenge we wanted to do it as a way of fighting back and helping others – the money we raise will go towards helping everyone with diabetes”.

In the build up to the three month challenge, Olly’s Army are recruiting more pupils, parents and teachers from independent school LVS Ascot. A further eight pupils from Year 2 and upwards have already committed to joining Olly’s Army, along with a group of parents and teachers at the school who will all need to walk at least 10,000 steps each day to stay on target to reach their million steps by the end of September.

Oliver’s dad Matt Ward, who has also joined the challenge team, said: “The fundraising was the pupils’ own idea and they have set everything up with minimal support from parents. It is a great example of the school values being put into practice. The lovely aspect of the initiative is that it has transcended different year groups and inspired a variety of kids – and adults! – to get together as a team and work towards a joint goal. It will encourage us all to get more active and help charity in the process”.

Head of LVS Ascot Infant & Junior School Rachael Cox said: “We teach our students about the LVS Ascot Learning Values and Skills which include resilience, initiative, collaboration and empathy, and Olly’s Army have shown all of those in abundance to take the news so well and use it as inspiration to do something so positive. They are a fine example of the students we are developing here and I am hugely proud of them all”.

Donations can be made via the Olly’s Army fundraising page here: https://step.everydayhero.com/uk/olly-s-army-

Picture: Oliver Ward (right) with Hamilton and Ella of Olly’s Army in the LVS Ascot Infant & Junior grounds where many of their 1 million steps will be taken from 1st July

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

LVS Ascot Students Prove Democracy Can Be A Success In Landmark School Elections

Whilst the country’s politicians are still trying to agree a

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way forward from the public Brexit vote nearly three years ago, students and teachers at LVS Ascot have been embracing democracy with an exciting project that put power into the hands of pupils for the first time. The project culminated in inaugural voting by students for the Heads of School positions for 2019/20, with the successful candidates formally announced on Friday 5th April.

The coveted positions of Head Boy, Head Girl and Head of Boarding, along with all prefects at the independent all-ability school, have traditionally been chosen by the Senior Management Team headed by Principal Christine Cunniffe. However, with a mission to inspire independence in its students, the school took the bold decision to embrace their voice and vote on the outcome through a series of elections.

For the first time, students who wished to be considered to be heads of houses or prefects had to run a campaign to win the votes of their peers in Years 5 to 13, as well as staff. The winners of these positions were then entitled to stand for the positions of Head Boy, Head Girl and Head Boarder. With twelve students in the running for the three prized positions, a hectic couple of weeks of hustings, canvassing and consultation commenced including a ‘Question Time’ style panel debate which allowed students to ask searching questions of the candidates.

The democracy project culminated in a day of voting on Thursday 28th March, with students attending a special polling station in school to collect and submit their voting cards, overseen by politics students and staff to ensure a transparent and secure process.  The final assembly of the year saw 16-year-old Zaki Marsali elected Head Boy with 41% of the vote, and 17-year old Jasmine Imsirovic elected Head Girl with 54% of the vote. Henry Hamilton, 17 and from Bromley in Kent, won the Head of Boarding role 59% of the vote.

Principal of LVS Ascot Christine Cunniffe said: “Our aim is to inspire independence in students, and allowing them to stand for elections and vote on who will lead amongst them was an important step towards that.  It was very pleasing to see excellent and clean campaigns fought, and both victory met with humility and defeat met with dignity – something we do not always see when democratic voting is involved”.

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

An enriching day of learning about culture and customs across the world took place at LVS Ascot on Friday 15th March as students from

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many different nations took the lead in helping to educate their peers and foster intergration. International Day saw students from Nepal to Nigeria and Iran to India taking the lead in bringing to life their countries’ customs to help enrich the education and understanding of all pupils at the independent all-ability school.

Whilst teaching British values and culture is an important aspect of life at LVS Ascot, the day and boarding school’s rich diversity in nationalities allowed the role of cultural teacher to be reversed and for students – as well as teachers – to learn more about the lives and upbringings of foreign students to help unite them.

An afternoon of workshop options included African drumming, led by professional drummer Callum Smith, Chinese painting, origami and anime all led by students, and the PE department running a host of international sports such as American football, Kho Kho from India and volleyball equivalent  Sepak Takraw which originated in Thailand.

All senior school students also attended performances from around the world in LVS Ascot’s professional 250-seat theatre, including classical and contemporary Chinese dance and songs from Russia. The global theme continued at lunchtime where the menu consisted of chicken tikka masala, beef in black bean sauce and Russian stroganoff.

Infant & Junior School pupils also immersed themselves into the cultural celebrations, with a range of dance classes relating to their curriculum. Reception and Year 1 pupils learned Bollywood dance moves, whilst Year 3 pupils tackled Egyptian style and Year 2, who are studying China at the moment, were engaged in their traditional dance.

Charlotte Dawson, Head of EAL/International Relations at LVS Ascot, said: “Our international students always enjoy sharing their culture and they put a tremendous amount of work in to make it our most successful International Day yet. Understanding promotes unity and I like to think that International Day plays a part in uniting our community here at LVS Ascot”.

Photo: LVS Ascot adorned by flags on International Day

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

Infant & Junior Pupils Enjoy Special Learning Power Week, Powered By Parents!

Pupils as young as four enjoyed a special themed timetable as

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parents and teachers came together to inspire them at LVS Ascot’s Learning Power Week from Monday 11th to Friday 15th February. The event allowed Infant & Junior pupils to enjoy parent-led sessions across a range of talks and activities as they work towards a unique diploma.

Fascinating talks and demonstrations from parents included Louise Holmes, whose daughter Holly is in Year 4, who is part of the Berkshire Lowland Search and Rescue Team. She brought in two dogs called Risk and Diesel to demonstrate, by hiding away pupils in the school playground, how the dogs track missing people and alert the team when found. Further parent career talks from jewellery designer Mrs Andrews and Mrs Southam from Cisco IT were followed by pilot Mr Jenner  who captivated his young audience with details of flying planes and how to forge a career in the aviation industry.

Learning Power Week helped pupils build towards their LVS Ascot Infant & Junior School Diploma, which is broken down into five pairs of values that are instilled in pupils over their time at the independent, all ability school. A special focus each day on a different set of values helped all pupils from Reception class to Year 6 achieve that. On Monday risk-taking and resilience were demonstrated through science experiments and public auditions for the school’s Young Musician of the Year, whilst on Tuesday forest school in LVS Ascot’s 25-acre grounds allowed pupils to show collaboration and self-confidence. A session on Wednesday with LVS Ascot’s senior school Outdoor Pursuits teacher Tim Wyndham-Smith, including students leading each other blindfolded through an obstacle course, developed initiative and independence skills, whilst curiosity and creativity were demonstrated and practiced on Thursday during a poetry festival and dance competition.

The week ended with sessions on empathy and reflection, with a range of mindfulness activities, perfectly rounding off an exciting and engaging week that brought parents and teachers’ expertise together to advance pupils’ knowledge.

Head of LVS Ascot Infant & Junior School Rachael Cox said: “Our diploma is a very unique and rewarding way for young pupils to develop key skills, and Learning Power Week helped them work towards the diploma in a really engaging way. All our pupils learned a lot of new things, worked together and had fun along the way which fits perfectly with our ethos”.

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

Fifth Annual Music Festival Sees LVS Ascot Students Shine with 15 Gold Medal-Winning Performances

235 young musicians from around Berkshire, Surrey, West

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London and beyond flocked to independent all-ability school LVS Ascot last weekend to take part in the 5th annual LVS Ascot Music Festival. The event has trebled in size since its inaugural running in 2015 when 78 students took part, and has established itself as a key event for pupils at schools across the south to test themselves and experience performing on LVS Ascot’s professional stage in front of an audience.

Heathfield School and Charters were just two of the local schools to take advantage of the opportunity to participate, and were joined by schools right across Berkshire including Holyport College and schools from Reading, at an event which encouraged vocal and instrumental performances across a range of disciplines and levels. Professional adjudicators included Leigh O’Hara who has conducted both the Wandsworth and Dulwich Symphony Orchestras, and judged the winners as well as providing crucial feedback to participants to help them develop their talents further.

LVS Ascot students celebrated record success at the three-day festival, which ran from Friday evening until Sunday, winning 15 golds, 11 silvers and 12 bronzes, including double gold medal celebrations for 15-year-old Charlotte Bell (Classical Higher Level and 15-and-under Voice Recital).  There was additional cause for celebration for LVS Ascot Infant & Junior School pupil Hamilton Davis, 11, and Year 9 student William Brooke, 13, who recently won places on the national children’s choir and national youth boys’ choir respectively and who both also won gold medals at the festival.

A large contingent from West London also made the journey to perform at the prestigious event where performances took place in the 250-seat theatre and recital room. These included representatives from the Nucleo Project, a social action programme in North Kensington, who won 11 gold medals including three ensemble performances.

LVS Ascot Head of Music James Bryant said: “Our fifth annual music festival was the most successful yet, allowing almost 250 talented young students from the south of England to perform to professional music adjudicators in our theatre and recital room. Music is a key part of life at LVS Ascot and we are delighted to extend the opportunities our students have to a much wider group of young musicians, to help them benefit from the expertise and facilities we have here”.

Photo: LVS Ascot student and double gold medal winner Charlotte Bell performs at the music festival

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

Pupils at LVS Ascot school have taken on the role of educating the local community, by teaming up with Thames Valley Police to

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produce their latest crime prevention campaign. A-level criminology students at the all-ability independent school created a series of short videos in December covering a range of advice to cut the risk of burglaries, which have now been seen by thousands of Berkshire residents on social media.

As part of Thames Valley Police Bracknell’s Winter Burglary Awareness campaign, the students directed and filmed four videos. These educated Berkshire residents through a series of tips to think about ways to secure their properties, minimise risk by hiding items from view and ensuring dark areas around their houses are well lit, and finally encouraging them to report anything they see that might be suspicious. The videos were seen thousands of times on the Thames Valley Police and Thames Valley Police Bracknell twitter accounts which have over 200,000 followers between them.

With LVS Ascot’s goal to inspire students, Sergeant Cassandra Oswald was invited to take part in a criminology lesson and, with coursework including planning a crime prevention campaign, a discussion centred around how best to deliver this which led to the idea of teaming up to create a real campaign for use in the build up to Christmas. To combat a rise in residential burglaries in the winter months, both nationally and within the Berkshire area, the school then worked on storyboards and filming in conjunction with Thames Valley Police to produce the final films which created direct engagement between the police and local community.

Neighbourhood Sergeant Cassandra Oswald said: “The LVS Ascot students were a pleasure to work with. They were motivated and engaged in the process, and came across as professional. They gave me a real insight into how some of our younger communities view the police and policing, and we would love to work with the school again on different campaigns in future”.

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe said: “Our aim is to inspire independence in students, and to give them the opportunity to take responsibility for educating the local community on such an important topic as crime prevention does just that. We would like to thank Thames Valley Police for working with us on this project to equip our students with the insight and support to produce such a successful project, and are glad they were so delighted with the end result”.

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

An entirely original production received rave reviews across three nights as students at LVS Ascot as students performed ‘All Our Children’ from 15th to 17th

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November to over 200 people per show. The play was historic for the talented pupils and teachers at the all-ability, independent school, being their first show created entirely in-school, written by Head of Drama Georgina Windsor with music composed by Year 11 student Jamie Kedwards.

The show was just as historic in its content, forming part of LVS Ascot’s commemorations of the end of the First World War. It followed the lives of three orphaned brothers arriving at Licensed Victuallers’ School in Kennington (where the school used to be based) in 1910, and then throughout their experiences of the war from 1914 to 1918. Zaki Marsali played one of the brothers, Harry, and said: “This is my first school play. I was told about the script being written within the school and it sounded special so I wanted to challenge myself and do something outside my comfort zone”.

You can view – and share – a short highlights film of the production, including interviews, here:

http://bit.ly/LVSAscotAllOurChildren

Parent Nicky Yates said: “It was an incredible production from start to finish. You wouldn’t have known it was written for a school, or performed by a school unless it was a drama school” whilst fellow parent Kate Davis said: “It was utterly spellbinding. Amazing script, brilliant production and the acting was outstanding. We all left rather teary-eyed and quietly contemplative”.

Four performances over three days captivated parents and fellow pupils alike, with over 200 people enjoying each show in LVS Ascot’s professional theatre. Head of Drama and writer of the play Georgina Windsor said: “I’m overwhelmed by the students, and so proud of them all from those in the ensemble and crew to the lead roles. We aim to inspire students at LVS Ascot to exceed their expectations, and with this show they have exceeded everybody’s expectations”.

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