Noel-Baker Community School

Noel-Baker Community School and Language College
Motto Excellence In All Things
Established 1960
Type Comprehensive school
Headteacher Mr Mal Kerr
Specialism Language College
Location Bracknell Drive
DE24 0BR
Local authority Derby
DfE URN 112992
Ofsted Reports
Staff 95 plus 90 Associated Staff
Students 1641
Gender Coeducational
Ages 11–19
Houses Aztec, Greek, Inca, and Roman
Website Noel Baker Community School and Language College

Coordinates: 52°52′58″N 1°26′20″W / 52.88288°N 1.43901°W / 52.88288; -1.43901

Noel-Baker Community School and Language College (as it became known from September 2005) is a mixed comprehensive secondary school in Alvaston, Derby, UK. As of 2005, it is currently oversubscribed, with approximately 2000 students on roll, making it the biggest secondary school in the city of Derby. The school takes students from the Alvaston, Boulton, Crewton and Keldholme areas of the city.

In September 2004 the school was awarded specialist school status as a Language College, by the Department for Education and Skills (DfES).[1] The impact of this award has been limited since 2004. Students were required to take on a language at GCSE, but this had proven unpopular and since been withdrawn.



The school was founded in 1960 as a Technical Grammar School, with pupils who passed the 11,12&13 plus and pupils from Allenton Technical School. It is named after the late Philip Noel-Baker, Olympic athlete, Derby South MP and Nobel Peace Prize winner.

During the 1970s, the school functioned well under the firm leadership of the headteacher, Glynn John (known affectionately by the pupils as 'Nunk').

However, during the early 1980s, after his retirement, the school declined. This was due largely to declining results. The school drastically turned around when a new headteacher, Mr Geoff Wynne stepped in, in the late 1980s. He took the school's GCSE results from 9% A-Cs in 1989 to 32% in 2002 when he retired. The schools GCSE results have continued to improve, moving to consistently above 30% for the key national measure of 5A*-C including English and Mathematics.

Dr. Paul Davies, of Swansea, then took the role of head master, his focus was on securing consistent exam results and behaviour. As Dr Paul Davies was a doctor of Geography he would sometimes cover Geography lessons in order to gain a first-hand insight into students opinions of the school. The success of his brief spell as headmaster was great, as student GCSE A*-C grades saw a gradual percentage increase, although were still quite low compared to other secondary schools in the Derby area. The school has since seen year-on-year development of GCSE results. Dr. Davies left the position of head master to join the Local Authority as Head of Secondary Learning[2] following his departure Margaret Eley took the position of Acting Headteacher in the interim period.

In 2009 Mal Kerr, of Wirksworth, became Headteacher.[3] Mal Kerr is of Irish descent and since his arrival has attempted to establish good relationships with students around the school. This has been noticed by his frequent attempts to meet and greet students.

The school had a satisfactory OFSTED report in 2005, this was built upon in 2008 when inspectors reported that Noel-Baker Community School and Language College was a 'good and improving school'.

Sixth Form

As well as catering for 11-16 year olds (years 7-11), the school also has a Sixth Form for 16-18 year olds. However, there are a select few students who failed to achieve the desirable grades within years 12-13, so carry on their subjects for another year, thus creating a 'year 14'. The Sixth Form offers A-Levels and GNVQs in various subjects. There are currently 150 A-Level students. However, the number of students taking on year 12 studies is on a current incline as the school has began to take on students to resit GCSE Maths and English studies. This has led to a higher than desirable intake of students which resulted in a new study suite being designed in the sixth form block. This was completed in late 2010.

The current head of sixth form is Mrs Donna Wilcox an the current sixth form student support manager is Mrs Janet Gostick. Together they hold responsibility for student admissions as well as helping students through daily life, such as UCAS and employment issues. However, the role of UCAS reference writing has been outsourced to other teachers to ensure that they are more personal. The success of this decision has greatly benefited the students.

New Building Construction

A new construction is currently being built to replace the current school. The site for this new school will be placed on the current playing fields. The current building, which is now exceeding 50 years old, will be demolished. The new Noel Baker construction will be prepared for the beginning of the school year in September 2012 at a cost of £34 million. The 1350 pupils of Noel Baker will be combined with 90 pupils from St.Martin's special school - a school which operates to educate special needs students. [4]

The construction of the new Noel-Baker will make it the most expensive new-build school in the area in comparison to Merrill Collage's construction which cost £15 million and Derby Moor whose refurbishment cost £19 million.

Notable alumni


External links

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