Academic work is central to our goal of nurturing the whole person. Pupils are encouraged to develop intellectual curiosity, to question received wisdoms, to think deeply and engage with serious subjects across a range of academic disciplines, and to articulate their own thoughts. The metacognitive skills of learning to learn are imparted through Learning Logs, and a highly effective Assessment for Learning Programme and the input of outside agencies. Pupils are taught how to learn.
The increasing accessibility of information means that educators have a more important role than ever teaching the traditional skills of evaluation, discernment and analysis. The best possible grades at GCSE and A level will pave the way for successful applications to university, but a thirst for understanding and a rigorous approach to study developed at school will be more important in the long term. The school has an impressive ease of practice in progressing pupils to top Russell Group universities.
The School prides itself on its high-quality pastoral care, and this includes enabling academic excellence and achievement. Highly qualified teachers give extensive support in a relaxed and open environment.
Our classroom curriculum is challenging, and so we insist on a certain level of academic ability in the pupils we admit. In that context we offer pupils a broad range of opportunities, and the emphasis is on identifying and bringing out the strengths of all pupils, in whatever field they may shine.
Our Personalised Learning and Setting Targets Achieving Results (STAR) Programmes have been identified as ‘outstanding’ and sector-leading by the Inspectorate, They have also attracted national and international interest. Each individual is tracked and supported to achieve the best they can be. Tracking and support systems are meticulous, systematic and rigorous.
Our co-curricular programme is vibrant and offers a very wide range of sporting, cultural and musical activities which are designed to stimulate, develop and grow our pupils into exceptionally rounded young adults. There is a house system which increases participation possibilities and, in addition, pupils from age 9-18 are equipped with the tools of positive psychology to understand PERMA, the five pillars of sustained well-being and happiness to which they can refer throughout their lives.
Our Learning Support is headed by an outstanding Special Needs Co-ordinator and an equally impressive special needs support team as well as an effective peer tutoring programme involving senior pupils.
15% of the Royal School community are boarders many of whom are foreign nationals. This brings an international dimension to the school which is treasured by all. The school is also heavily involved in ‘service to others’ at local, national and global level. This fosters and develops the higher order skills of empathy, compassion and altruism.
The Royal School lies on a historic and beautiful 29 acre campus in the centre of the fine, Georgian, Cathedral City of Armagh. It offers a safe and secure environment with easy access to the island of Ireland’s major arterial routes and airports.