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The Willink



Our prime aim at The Willink is to provide the highest standard of education for all of our students so that every student achieves their maximum potential. We talk to our students how important it is to Engage, show Respect and Achieve (ERA). With a blend of personal care and attention to detail, we continue to build a school community where students, parents, staff and governors work together in partnership to forge a creative and healthy environment for learning and personal development. Our ethos is encapsulated in the phrase “village school, global outlook”: to develop mature and responsible citizens who, as members of society, will go on to make a positive contribution to Britain in a global context.

We are proud of our heritage as a Language College. This tradition continues through our status as an International School (re-designated July 2022), as a centre for development in language learning, and our charity work at home and abroad. Almost all students study a language to GCSE level and the school offers French, German, Spanish to A Level. In September 2020 the school became one of seventy schools across the UK participating in the Mandarin Excellence Programme. Mandarin is now firmly our fourth language with our first GCSE Mandarin cohort beginning their exam course in September 2022.

 In 2017 the DfE designated The Willink a Teaching School beginning a new chapter as a leading institution for initial teacher training, professional development and supporting local schools in challenging circumstances. This role has morphed into the school becoming a regional centre for Teaching School Hub Berkshire in 2021. As lead school for the Schools Direct Teaching Partnership, the Willink co-ordinates the training of high-quality entrants to the teaching profession. In September 2020 the Willink became the centre for the Möbius Maths Hub - one of forty National Centres for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics (NCETM), leading developments in maths teaching and subject leadership from across a region including Bracknell, Reading, Wokingham, West Berkshire, Swindon and Wiltshire.

There is a very happy atmosphere at Willink. It is genuinely a place where young people of every talent and aptitude can thrive and blossom. We do aim to build on every child’s strengths; to encourage our students to be well-disciplined, polite and considerate, well-motivated and compassionate. We are very proud of the confident, skilled and ambitious students who leave us.

Our standards are always well above national averages. There were public examinations in 2022 but recent years have been teacher assessed grades. In a normal exam year about 70% of our students achieved at least grades 9-5 at GCSE in both English and Mathematics, grades 9-7 are about 40% and almost half the cohort achieve the English Baccalaureate – twice the national average. Our Attainment 8 score in 2019 was 55 (average grade B-) and the overall Progress 8 value was +0.41 above average; we await the figures for 2022. At A level we have a strong track record of achievement with results above national averages. Upward of a third of grades are usually A*/A and 90% achieve grades A*-C. Every year the Willink sends proportionately a large contingent to the UK’s top Russell Group universities including Oxford and Cambridge. In 2019 Willink featured in the Good School Guide and the school was ranked in the top ten non-selective schools in Berkshire.

At our last official Ofsted Inspection in 2018, The Willink was considered to be a good school with outstanding features. In June 2019 the school volunteered for a pilot inspection for the new Education Inspection Framework, which revealed again a sound curriculum and strong teaching. Our aim is simply to continue to build and to strive for excellence in everything we do, to make sustainable improvements, so that we provide the very best education for our young people.

If you would like to visit us please do contact Mrs Lin Bailey, Business Support Manager.


Peter Fry, Head, September 2022

To view the Head's Blog, please click here.