The contribution of the curricular and extra-curricular provision is excellent, and supports the development of the whole individual. The commitment and enthusiasm of a broad range of experienced staff promotes variety and supports an inclusive ethos. Team games are central in the life of the school and are highly valued by pupils.
ISI Inspection Report March 2014
Pangbourne is proud to provide an extensive co-curricular programme, incorporating sport, music, drama, the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, CCF and activities, which is thriving at the College.
Pangbourne has built up the resources over a number of years to offer a multitude of challenging, engaging and, above all, fun co-curricular activities with the support of its dedicated staff, which slot in seamlessly to students’ timetables. This engagement with non-academic pursuits benefits students’ development and develops skills which are highly valued by employers.
Students benefit from participation in the sporting programme by becoming physically fitter, regularly working together as a team, furthering their communication skills and becoming more self-confident. All students are given opportunities to represent Pangbourne, whether in its major sports such as rowing and hockey or in non-competitive activities such as golf and clay pigeon shooting. The most talented pupils are stretched with an elite programme designed to enable them to achieve national or county honours under the tutelage of a vast and experienced team of internal and external coaches.
There are numerous musical opportunities for Pangbournians outside of the classroom. As well as regular trips organised by the Music Department to see professional musicians perform, students are able to participate in the College Choir, Chamber Choir, Jazz Band, Marching Band, Drum Corps, Percussion Ensemble and chamber ensembles. Students have use of the fantastic facilities at Pangbourne, including the Steinway pianos which give the school an All-Steinway status.
The drama productions are an extension of the lessons learnt in the classroom and an opportunity to showcase the very best young actors and actresses at Pangbourne. The productions are always very well attended and directed meticulously and ambitiously by the Drama Department. Students are able to further their drama skills formally by taking Drama Trinity exams at a variety of different grades.
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is an area of growing and continued success, and a source of great pride at the College. Year on year, more students achieve the Gold Award and the dedication shown by students and the skills developed on the programme are valuable to each pupil’s development and help their CVs and UCAS forms stand out. Apart from the practical skills learnt, students volunteer in local communities, learn to work with different people in teams and develop working independently to achieve a goal.
The Combined Cadet Force (CCF) programme is split into Army, Royal Marines and Royal Navy sections and is invaluable in helping students gain self-discipline and work together in a team to achieve objectives. The aim of the programme is to make students better citizens and provide them something completely different from what they are used to. There is also the opportunity for students to take formal qualifications, such as sailing qualifications, within their particular specialism.
There is an activity session once a week which breaks up the academic timetable for students to further their development in a chosen specialism which will benefit them either inside or outside of the classroom. Mountain biking, academic surgeries and drama are just a few of the many activities offered to students in this weekly slot.
Pupils get regular opportunities to experience the world outside Pangbourne through a diverse programme of trips, tours and expeditions. As well as the trips organised by academic departments, there are annual music and sporting tours in the UK and overseas, and every summer, teachers lead World Challenge trips to far-off destinations such as Laos and Vietnam. The World Challenge trips are designed to equip participants with qualities such as Service and kindness when helping to make a difference in deprived communities and also cater for rest and recuperation periods for the group to explore the more beautiful parts of the world.
Service is a quality strongly promoted at Pangbourne and students are expected to demonstrate this value in their actions and deeds. Among the ways in which students demonstrate their commitment to Service are their involvement in charitable initiatives, their dedication to all areas of Pangbourne life and their cooperation at events such as Open Day when they become College ambassadors.