The Thomas Hardye School

Year 11 Students Aspire and Inspire!


Aspire Students

Aspiring Minds students with their Projects


A group of Year 11 students this year have taken part in a pilot enrichment programme for academically able students called Aspiring Minds. The students attended weekly seminars on a variety of topics chosen to challenge them beyond their traditional GCSE subjects and included sessions such as ‘How can we determine Mathematical proof?’, ‘Free will v determinism and the implications for moral responsibility’ and ‘Should we stay in the Euro?’. They also received advice for beyond year 11 on building a positive online profile, how to make your university application stand out and the Oxbridge application process.

As part of the programme students also completed the AQA Higher Project Qualification, an independent piece of work that students researched, wrote and presented to staff and peers, with guidance from a member of staff in school. Some of the project titles included ‘How have assisted fertility methods developed since their creation?’, ‘Should Tony Nicklinson have had the right to assisted suicide?’ and ‘How can one determine the value of an antique cocktail watch?’ All of the projects were immensely impressive and demonstrated the students’ independence of work ethic, resilience and intelligence. Students are awaiting the results of moderation but have all been predicted grades A*-A.

One student said: “The sessions have been really interesting as they covered a wide variety of topics like ethical debates which I hadn’t encountered before. It has helped me a great deal.”

One parent commented: “It has certainly challenged my daughter to go the extra mile, but has been well worth it and the skills she has learnt are extremely valuable.”

The Aspiring Minds Programme is due to launch again this month with the current Year 10 cohort. Please contact Mrs Bunker ( if you would like more details.


June 2015