Archive for the ‘Westminster Academy’ Category

Westbourne Footbridge

Tuesday, July 19th, 2016

Proposal for the south side of the Westbourne footbridge

The Westbourne (or Hampden Street) footbridge over the railway runs between Alfred Road and Westbourne Park Villas. Dubbed ‘mugger’s bridge’, the footbridge has many faults and has long been the subject of complaints and criticisms.

As part of the Crossrail Act Crossrail is legally obliged to improve this crossing point. It has now submitted a Schedule 7 application – the equivalent of a planning application. The plans involve installing a ramp providing disabled access on the south side of the bridge. If approved the works will happen later this year.

A ramp will be an improvement on the current position, but it is widely recognised that the proper solution would be a new bridge. Instead, what is being offered is a poor quality bodged job.

Please give your views on the design. To do so online please go to:

WA alumnus honoured with Diana Award

Friday, December 18th, 2015

Mohammed Abdul Jalil has been honoured with the Diana AwardWestminster Academy is delighted to announce that Mohammed Abdul Jalil has been honoured with the Diana Award. The Diana Award, set up in memory of Princess Diana’s belief that young people have the power to change the world for the better, has Prime Minister David Cameron as Patron and the support of the HRH Duke of Cambridge and HRH Prince Harry.

Mohammed Abdul Jalil (AJ) received the Diana Award for being a Diana Champion Volunteer at Westminster Academy and the surrounding area.

As a Volunteer Police Cadet, AJ has been actively engaged in keeping communities safe for the past three years. He has also led younger cadets and has inspired them to have a positive impact on the local area. Additionally, AJ has supported older members of the community by volunteering with Open Age at Westminster Academy. As well as helping to organise events for the group, AJ has been involved in weekly sessions to help Open Age members with technology, giving them the confidence to use the internet and mobile phones.

Since 1999, the Diana Award has recognised over 44,000 young people who have made a positive difference to the lives of others and their communities.  The Diana Award believe that young people should be: encouraged for their contributions to society, empowered to reach their full potential and they should be engaged in social action as early in life as possible.

Acting Principal, Dr Rana, said,

“At Westminster Academy we place high value on active citizenship, and as such are extremely proud of AJ. The Diana Award will encourage him to continue his volunteer work and will inspire other young people to volunteer in their schools and communities.”

Tessy Ojo, CEO of the Diana Award, added,

“The Diana Award is proud to recognise young volunteers, like Mohammed, who have the confidence and courage to stand up for what they believe. The Diana Champion Volunteer Award is presented to inspirational young people who have made a positive difference in their communities. With a growing network of over 44,000 Award Holders, we are building a force of young people who are committed to take social action and improve our communities.”

AJ recently completed the International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme at Westminster Academy and is now pursuing his passion for media at Bournemouth University.

Westminster Academy wins Mayor of London’s elite Gold Club Award

Friday, December 18th, 2015

London Schools' Gold Club Awards - 25 Sep 15Westminster Academy is proud to announce that it has again won a Mayor of London’s Gold Club Award, making the Academy the only secondary school in Westminster to be part of the London Schools Gold Club for 2015-2016.

At the Gold Club Awards and launch of the 2015-2016 programme at City Hall last Friday, Westminster Academy was among only 7% of primary and secondary schools in London eligible to become Gold Club members. The annual scheme identifies and celebrates exceptional schools in London who are succeeding with their pupils, in particular schools who are ‘bucking the trend’.

With a growing culture of success at Westminster Academy, students and staff alike place high value on the improvements and achievements made in recent years, with over 70% of all students consistently achieving A*-C in core subjects and the school consistently being in the top 1% nationally in terms of progress measures for its ‘Best 8 Score’ including English and maths. The Sixth Form at Westminster Academy has also made rapid improvements, with 80% A*-A grades this year. The Academy attributes its achievements to its highly personalised approach and its focus on developing the spiritual, moral, social, cultural, intellectual and physical potential of students through a rich extra-curricular programme, International Business and Enterprise specialism and its partnership with the Royal Society of Medicine.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson commented,

“Congratulations to Westminster Academy for its outstanding achievements and for the hard work of its pupils and teaching staff. London schools are going from strength to strength and our Gold Club members are testament to the fact all schools can aspire to attain excellence for all their pupils, whatever their circumstances. The Gold Club is a great platform for schools to share their bright ideas and approaches to enable every one of their pupils to achieve terrific results.”

This award comes as Westminster Academy’s long serving Principal, Ms Smita Bora, has been offered the opportunity to work with the Academy’s sponsors to further their educational strategy. To ensure a smooth transition and sustainability of the Academy’s unique vision and ethos, Dr Saima Rana will be appointed as Acting Principal from 01 October 2015. Ms Smita Bora will remain part of the Westminster Academy fraternity, continuing her invaluable work with the Academy’s educational, community and business partners in her new role but she is delighted to be handing over the Principalship to Dr Rana:

“I am proud to have served Westminster Academy for the last ten years and I am thrilled that Dr Rana will be continuing the outstanding achievements we have led together over the last four years.”

New Academy Principal, Dr Saima Rana, said,

“This is a great Academy; I am deeply honoured to be the Principal at this time of transition. I am completely dedicated to maintaining the highest standards which have made Westminster Academy an outstanding academy in all respects. The Academy is all about fulfilling the highest aspirations of every child and I will lead this academy with the values of fairness, integrity and honesty. Because every child matters to me, I will ensure that every child is safe, successful and reaches the very limits of their ability so that when they leave they are powerful citizens of the future; this is what the Academy was under Ms Bora and will continue to be under my leadership.”

Spirit of volunteering at Westbourne Festival

Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

Sunday 7 June saw the Westbourne Festival take place in beautiful sunshine. The festival is an annual event for Westbourne residents, and Westminster Academy has always worked closely with the organisers. This year was no exception; Ashleigh Williams and Roy Prasetyo have been involved in planning the event since the start of the year.

On the day, WA provided 15 Sixth Form volunteers who gave up their Sunday to help promote the Westbourne Forum, run the raffle, help set up and tidy away the stands, direct guests, perform live music, police the bouncy castle – and more besides!

Volunteering is a key part of our Sixth Form, and all of our students regularly give up their time to help the community, either in school or locally. I was very impressed by the enthusiasm with which students attacked their tasks, even when it came to picking up litter at the end! Though some of them were a little shy at first, they all grew in confidence as the afternoon progressed, and the organisers were very impressed and grateful for their help.

We are already looking forward to next year!

Mr Farmbrough, Senior Leader – Sixth Form

Knighthood bestowed on Naim Dangoor

Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

Westminster Academy is thrilled to announce that Naim Dangoor has been knighted in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for ‘his extraordinarily generous philanthropy to a range of health, educational and religious charities.’

Whilst you see Sir Naim Dangoor’s name on the building every day, you may not be aware of just quite how exceptional his life journey and contributions to society have been.

After building a successful business empire in his homeland of Iraq, Sir Naim Dangoor and his wife were forced to leave the country in the 1960s as a result of political upheaval and arrived in the UK having seen all his businesses taken by the Iraqi government. Having studied engineering at London University many years earlier, Sir Naim restarted his business life again, and gradually with the help of his four sons he created a highly successful property business in the UK. Since then, Sir Naim Dangoor has set up the Exilarch’s Foundation and distributed large amounts to good causes. This includes substantial donations to Cancer Research UK and Age UK, both of which have touched his life personally.

Sir Naim Dangoor said,

“Like many families before us, my family had to flee its country of origin. We left Iraq and found refuge here in the UK. In this wonderful country, immigrants have the opportunity to restart their lives and contribute to the welfare of their new home, as many have done before us. My hope for Iraq, and the whole Middle East, is that, there too, harmony and co-operation will one day become the norm once more, to allow that region again to contribute to the welfare of humanity.”

We could not be prouder, nor more fortunate, to have the Dangoor family as the sponsor of Westminster Academy. Long may we be inspired by Sir Naim Dangoor’s story, which so profoundly resonates with the Academy’s ethos and the values and character traits we strive towards.

On behalf of the students and staff of Westminster Academy, our Chair of Governors, Mr Randeree CBE wrote to congratulate David Dangoor (son of Sir Naim Dangoor); we would like to share this with the WA community.

Dear David,

May I Congratulate your father on the wonderful Honour that was bestowed upon him by Her Majesty The Queen, in her Birthday Honours List.

Apart from this honour being a well deserved and fitting tribute to your father’s lifelong philanthropic work, it also acknowledges the on-going incredible contribution being made on a daily basis by your family, benefiting so many deserving communities and causes in the UK and Internationally.

On a personal note, I know I speak for every stakeholder at The Westminster Academy, the contribution and vision of the Dangoor Family in this community is immeasurable. It is a privilege being associated with the Dangoor Family via The Westminster Academy and I wish to extend my utmost Congratulations and that of everyone at The Westminster Academy.

Yours sincerely,

Shabir Randeree CBE

Chair of Governors, Westminster Academy

By royal appointment: Year 7 students give presentation at Buckingham Palace

Friday, May 29th, 2015

Westminster Academy goes to Buckingham Palace

Two Westminster Academy students were selected to go to Buckingham Palace to promote the benefits of Outward Bound residentials to a group of funders.

Principal, Ms Smita Bora, explained the level of deprivation within Westbourne to the funders. Many of the funders were unaware that Westbourne is the seventh most deprived constituency in the country and that the difference in life expectancy between a Westbourne resident and an average Westminster resident is 20 years.

Outdoor Education Co-ordinator, Matthew Puffett, explained how the generous sponsorship of 30 places at an Outward Bound residential, by Westminster Academy’s sponsors David and Judy Dangoor, had helped Year 7 students develop an awareness of how to transfer character traits experienced on the residential such a “grit” into challenges faced at schools such as examinations.

When I went to Buckingham Palace, I was outside and saw all those tourists; I thought about whose house I was going into and thought, ‘I am the best of the best!’ When I took my first step inside I was instantly amazed. I saw real gold everywhere, red silk and the stairs were made of white crystal. Just one word could define everything: ‘amazing’.

When I got to the balcony room, I saw Chinese art everywhere. I was amazed. I did a practice speech at first and they all said it was great! When everyone else came I started to feel nervous. When I made my real speech I made one mistake but carried on. It was an amazing experience!

By Lanre Dada, Year 7

The journey was nerve-racking and was shorter than I expected. When we arrived, there were lots of people staring and wondering, “How come they get to go in?” We went inside to a very extravagant room where men took our coats and told us when to go upstairs.

We went up to a room with oriental decor. We waited until the guests came and then we gave our speeches. I was so nervous! I was very proud of myself afterwards. We then received a visit from HRH the Duke of York! He asked us about our experiences with Outward Bound. Then we had our lunch at a hotel called Ruben. It was divine.

By Abado Jama, Year 7

Westminster Academy news goes global: BBC School Report 2015

Friday, May 29th, 2015

westminster academy at the bbc -pic 1On Thursday 19th March students participated in the BBC School report, a nationwide event where schools are encouraged to create a news broadcast. Students from Westminster Academy were fortunate to have had training from the BBC due to links the Media department has been able to create over the last year and this put them in a really strong position.

westminster academy at the bbc - pic 2On the day Team WA rose to the challenge of working to a tight dead-line through excellent teamwork, thorough planning and technical expertise. The students were really happy with the end product which can now be seen on the News pages of the Westminster Academy website; bring on next year!

By Mr Rahman, Head of Media

Westminster Academy tops Sixth Form performance tables!

Wednesday, March 4th, 2015

Picture of Westminster Academy studentsWestminster Academy is delighted to report that the Sixth Form is now top of the tables in Westminster. The average point score per academic student at Westminster Academy was 874.7 points (equivalent to 2 A* and 1 A), more than 25 points ahead of the next state school in the borough.

In 2014 88% of Sixth Form students gained A*-C grades, including 46% of students achieving the equivalent of A* and A grades. The high grades reflect the breadth of the IB, with students’ results being divided across six disciplines as opposed to the usual three subjects at A Level: English, Foreign Languages, Humanities, Science, Maths and the Arts or an elective.