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TEACHER OF BIOLOGY
The Biology Department at Westcliff High School for Boys (WHSB) has been a high performing Department for many years. We have had consistently outstanding results in GCSE and Advanced Level Biology, with the Department obtaining particularly pleasing results at A Level. The Department has grown considerably over recent years and currently runs eight groups at Advanced Level. There are 61 students currently studying Biology in Year 12 and 53 studying in Year 13. At GCSE, 180 pupils sit the AQA GCSE course.
The Biology Department also plays an important role in the extra-curricular life of the School. The Department offers a variety of additional clubs which pupils can attend, aimed at supporting those in need of support or extending the more able. We have a particularly effective mentoring scheme, in which Year 12 and Year 13 students mentor those lower down the School. Pupils in Year 11 and Year 13 will also sit the respective Biology Challenge and Biology Olympiad organised by the UKBC, and students often progress to the follow-on rounds at all levels. Further to this, we offer our students the opportunity to visit Reading University to experience the latest molecular biology techniques, as well as lectures at various academic institutions and guest lectures at the School.
ACCOMMODATION AND FACILITIES
The Biology Department occupies four laboratories within the Science building. The Science building has just recently undergone a considerable refurbishment and now offers the most up-to-date facilities and an attractive teaching environment. On a practical level, the Biology Department is well stocked with high grade microscopes, an autoclave for microbial work, colorimeters, spirometers, peak flow meters, oximeters, dynamometers and many more resources. We also have an array of biological models, microscope slides and DVDs.
In the Lower School (Years 7-9) syllabus in Biology, pupils learn about the fundamental structures and functions of cells and organ systems in Year 7, before looking at the digestive and breathing systems. This leads onto a more detailed analysis of plant biology in Year 8, which concludes with up-to-date phases of study of health in humans and the science of microbiology. In Year 9, pupils delve deeper into the molecular world of the cell and receive lessons on the subject of enzymes and DNA as well as such broader topics as immunity.
The AQA Biology GCSE curriculum follows on from the work that has been completed in the Lower School, both consolidating parts of it that have previously been covered to GCSE Level but also extending other parts so pupils can access the Grade 9 GCSE grade.
In the Sixth Form, students can choose to study AQA Advanced Level Biology if they attained a Level 7, 8 or 9 in GCSE Biology. In Year 12, Biology students will study biological molecules, cells, gas exchange and genetic information. In Year 13, we cover energy transfer, responses, inheritance and evolution and control of gene expression.
At all divisions in Biology, the Department devotes time to the development of examination technique and regularly assesses students so they are best placed to succeed at examination time.
Results in all Public Examinations are outstanding and those who choose to continue their biological studies at University generally do so at established Universities, including the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. The Examination Board used for Public Examinations is AQA for both GCSE and Advanced Level.
In Summer 2023, 71% of candidates at Advanced Level were awarded A*-B grades, with 18% of candidates achieving an A* grade. At GCSE, in the Summer of 2023, 87% of pupils were graded at 9-7 with 31% being awarded the very highest grade.
The teacher is required to carry out the general professional duties of a school teacher under the reasonable direction of the Head of Department and Headmaster and to perform such particular duties that from time to time which may reasonably be assigned him/her by the Headmaster. Teachers on the Upper Pay Scale (UPS) will be expected to make broader contribution to the School as a normal part of their work.
Duties and Responsibilities:
The following responsibilities are included in the professional duties which the teacher is required to perform:
• to support and promote the School's general purposes, ethos and Learner Profile;
• to be familiar with and respect and follow the School's Policies and Procedures;
• to maintain a good understanding of whole School Evaluation and Development Planning;
• to act as a role model to pupils through always being punctual and well prepared and to maintain appropriate professional relationships and an atmosphere conducive to learning;
• to attend School and Year Assemblies and to carry out a share of supervision duties in accordance with published rotas;
• to contribute actively to the maintenance of the School as an orderly community by upholding the provisions of the School's Rules and the Pupils' Code of Conduct;
• to maintain good order and discipline among the pupils, safeguarding their welfare both on School premises and when engaged in authorized activities elsewhere;
• to participate in staff and other meetings relating to the School's curricular, pastoral or administrative arrangements;
• to assist with covering or taking other classes as and when required (e.g. staff illness) and being available for examination invigilation;
• to communicate and co-operate on educational issues with persons or bodies outside the School as appropriate;
• to contribute to the extra-curricular life of the School as appropriate and attend and support School and House events wherever possible.
• to ensure that lessons are planned in appropriate detail (considering pupils' prior attainment) and are prepared and delivered in accordance with the Learner Profile, departmental Schemes of Work and regulatory standards, reinforcing the need for high expectations which inspire, motivate and challenge pupils;
• to take account of pupils' educational needs (differentiating where appropriate), to teach in a manner appropriate to a Grammar School (as outlined in the School's Guide to Outstanding Teaching), including the setting and marking of work, to be carried out by the pupils in School and elsewhere (homework), according to agreed schedules;
• to assess, record and report on the development, progress and attainment of pupils in accordance with the School's policy, in order to ensure pupils fulfil their potential. This record of assessment should be available to the Head of Department or Directors of Studies on request;
• to regularly mark pupils' work, giving appropriate feedback and keeping records of marks;
• to provide mark lists, grading lists, written reports, internal comments or references relating to individual pupils as the School may require;
• to communicate with Head of Department and Form Tutor regarding the progress of individual pupils, as necessary;
• to attend Parent Evenings to discuss the progress of pupils and use such occasions to offer constructive advice on what pupils need to do to improve their progress;
• to participate, within the guidelines laid down by the Head of Department, in the evaluation and development of appropriate methods of teaching, syllabuses and materials, writing Schemes of Work as reasonably requested and contributing to the development of departmental policy;
• to assist with displays and publishing of pupils' work;
• to utilise ICT as an effective tool to aid teaching and other classroom resources as appropriate;
• to assist with departmental voluntary activities, societies, trips and initiatives.
Teachers will act as Form Tutors under the direction of a Progress Leader and Head of School/Director of Sixth Form and they will:
• be 'in loco parentis', responsible for the welfare of pupils in the Form and the first point of contact for those seeking help or guidance or wishing to express concern;
• take an interest in the personal circumstances and development of each pupil in the designated Form Group, in his/her happiness and security, and to be available for advice or consultation with parents as well as provide comments on Reports, and to handle correspondence;
• promote the academic progress and well-being of individual pupils and any Form Group, class or group, ensuring consistent feedback is given, which guides pupils. Discussing Reports and supporting self-evaluation activities with the designated Form Group;
• providing tutees with guidance and advice on educational, careers and social matters, monitoring their welfare and making relevant records and reports (including reference and personal profiles) in accordance with the School's policies. If necessary, directing pupils to sources of more expert advice on specific questions;
• ensure that the Form Group's Pupil Planners are kept up to date and to ensure they are used effectively by pupils including as a means of parent(s)/School communication;
• promote the Learner Profile and high standards of behaviour, attendance, punctuality and attitudes to work.
• ensure that pupils' dress and appearance conform to the requirements set out in the Code of Conduct;
• encourage pupils to develop their interests and talents through participation in extra-curricular activities and the broader life of the School;
• discharge effectively a range of Form administrative duties.
Personnel and Continuing Professional Development:
• to attend and participate in Staff INSET and training courses and events, as requested;
• to contribute, as requested, to the selection, appointment and professional development of staff, including the induction of new teachers;
• teachers on the Upper Pay Scale will be expected to make a greater contribution to the School's Appraisal and CPD arrangements as part of their normal working arrangements.
CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT
• The above responsibilities are subject to the general duties and responsibilities contained in the written Statement of Conditions of Employment (the Contract of Employment).
• The postholder is required to support and encourage the School's ethos and its objectives, policies and procedures as agreed by the Governing Body.
• To uphold the School's policy in respect of child protection and safeguarding matters.
• The postholder shall be subject to all relevant statutory requirements as detailed in the most recent School Teachers' Pay and Conditions Document.
• The postholder may be required to perform any other reasonable tasks after consultation.
• This job description allocates duties and responsibilities but does not direct the particular amount of time to be spent on carrying them out and no part of it may be so constructed.
• This job description is not necessarily a comprehensive definition of the post. It will be reviewed at regular intervals and it may be subject to modification at any time after consultation with the postholder.
• All staff members are required to participate in the School's Appraisal Scheme.
Information about the School
At Westcliff High School for Boys (WHSB) we continue to hold dear our values and traditions whilst fostering academic excellence and a dynamism which allow us to provide a twenty-first century world class education.
Our record of success is reflected in our outstanding A Level and GCSE results and we are committed to providing the highest standards in all aspects of our provision for pupils.