“I loved my time at Walhampton, I was a Prefect as well as Head of Johnson House. Having considered a couple of local schools, including Clayesmore and Canford, I chose Ballard after hearing very positive feedback from friends and people I had met through sporting events.
I won a sports scholarship but Ballard is brilliant for many things, not just sport. It is a really great place to be. Each department at Ballard, whether it’s sport, academic or music and the arts is full of encouraging and very knowledgeable teachers who help you to identify your strengths.
I have friends at other schools who found it really hard to fit into their new school. If you don’t have the right friends and fit it’s not enjoyable. Ballard is such a friendly school it is easy to get on and enjoy learning.
Academically Ballard is brilliant and flexible, with a great choice of GCSE subjects. The teachers think about the structure of their lessons. In Business Studies we did the three chunkiest topics over the first year, one each term so this year we had plenty of time to practise old papers so we really felt exam ready. In Geography they make it really enjoyable by utilising different approaches including field trips. English Maths and Science are all excellent. Again it is the way they make it interesting for us and how they structure the learning to make it work for us.
The Music department offers a huge variety of talented teaching. For Art they are great at giving constructive help – making it easy to get the best out of your course through thoughtful topic choice.
Personally, I found that in the Sports Department in particular, gave me great encouragement to get the absolute most from each training session by introducing new disciplines and the teachers gave up their own time to assist us with learning every aspect. The teachers have amazing relationships with the students. They encouraged me to try new things and they make sure you achieve the best you can in the course work.
Throughout the school there is a strong system of support and there is always someone to ask for advice on any topic, from French to PSHE and during the GCSE revision period there were lots of extra classes and clinics to attend during lunch breaks, at weekends and holidays. You think you’ll never go to any of them but in the end they are such a benefit that you go to them all!
I also really enjoy all the trips Ballard offers and the wide range of extra-curricular activities available which allow you to try things you may not always have necessarily thought of including the Duke of Edinburgh Award which I loved.
Overall in my 3 years at Ballard I took as many opportunities as I could and as I look ahead to starting at Peter Symonds I really feel that Ballard has provided me with all I need to progress
So why come to Ballard – because it will get the best out of you. It is an amazing school to have on our door step.”