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Scholars Programme (Brilliant Club)

We often post pictures of sporting and musical success on these pages but here's something different. These children have been working on the Scholars Programme which links primary schools with top universities. When we started the programme three years ago we were able to take children to Cambridge for the day and were then assigned a research student (a graduate now working on a higher degree usually a PhD or Doctor of Philosophy) to tutor them in producing an extended essay. Following the success of this we committed to the programme and to involve a different group of children every year. The intention is to inspire our children and get them to not only consider going to college but to work hard and maybe earn a place at one of the country's top institutions which have for too long been dominated by children from public schools. We know our children can be just as good when given the chance because former pupils have actually gone to universities such as Cambridge and Imperial College London. We would like all of our children to aim high and more of them to achieve this kind of success. However, the scheme is run by the charity Brilliant Club and they have precise rules for which children we can choose. Teachers have to choose some of our brightest children overall from each of the three Y5 classes and some children who are qualify for Pupil Premium and whose own parents did not go to university. All the children have to be able to cope with some very challenging academic work.  We give a great deal of support to less able children and it is good to also focus or more able.  The project also makes all children aware of the option of going to university and that is something they could work towards. For the last two years the programme has been disrupted by Covid19 and children have not been able to actually visit the universities and some of the tutoring needed to be remote and the final "graduation". The work they completed and the learning learning this entailed was however just as good.