Ark is an education charity and one of the country’s top-performing school networks. We believe that education can transform lives. Each school in the Ark network is unique and has its own ethos and character, but we all share the same mission: to give every child the very best start so that, when the time comes, they’re able to go on to university or the career of their choice.
Since 2013, five Hastings schools have joined the Ark network: Ark Blacklands Primary Academy, Ark Little Ridge Primary Academy, Ark Castledown Primary Academy, Helenswood Academy and Ark William Parker Academy.
Since joining the Ark network, Ark Blacklands works with other Ark schools to make sure that every child has the best start ahead of secondary school. The school also uses Read Write Inc., a programme which helps children master literacy skills.
On average, the schools that have joined the Ark network have 50% more students achieving five good GCSEs than before they joined. Ark Conway Primary Academy recently achieved the country’s best results for children aged 7 and Charter Academy in Portsmouth, one of Ark’s secondary schools, is the most improved in the country since joining the network. Ark schools spend more time on core subjects like English and maths than most schools and use Mathematics Mastery – an innovative curriculum based on best practice in high-performing school systems like Singapore – to give all students a real mastery of the subject.
Ark is about more than just great exam results - we also develop our young people outside of the classroom. Students from across the network have the chance to take part in exciting performance s and competitions including debating tournaments, spelling bees and maths competitions, held across the country. Ark students are also invited to perform at the charity’s annual Music Gala at the Barbican, one of the biggest performing arts centres in Europe. Ark students also have the opportunity to perform Shakespeare plays in world-famous venues as part of the Shakespeare Schools Festival. Ark even offers support beyond school, with generous university bursaries and scholarships to sixth form students to help them with living costs for their higher education.
As well as its high-performing schools, Ark runs programmes in the UK and abroad that are transforming children’s lives. Ark is one of the co-founders of Frontline, a programme which is training top graduates to be the next generation of outstanding social workers, and has partnered with international organisations to train teachers in Uganda and India.