Sixth Form Virtual Open Evening

  We are delighted to announce our Sixth Form Open Evening on Wednesday 2nd December. We are real...

Sponsored Walk

  Therfield Trust – 10k for £10k Sponsored Walk 2020 *** October Half Term To donate online...

Therfield School Virtual Open Evening

  Please click here for the open evening link     Please click here to view the Q&A sessio...

Transition to Therfield from Year 6

  As a parent/carer of a Year 6 student joining Therfield in September, please click on the link ...

School Band Performance

Members of the Jazz Band had a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon performing at Wates Head Office.   ...

  • Sixth Form Virtual Open Evening

  • Sponsored Walk

  • Therfield School Virtual Open Evening

  • Transition to Therfield from Year 6

  • School Band Performance

'This is Therfield' Spring 2019

Friday 8th March

Last week a group of 28 year 9, 10 and 11 French students embarked on a brand new trip to the Château de la Baudonnière, a French immersion activity centre in Normandy. The aim of the château is to get students having fun and socialising but in an entirely French environment, and they have a big team of enthusiastic and friendly animateurs who run activities in the morning, afternoon and evening as well as staying with the group at mealtimes, speaking French all the time. We took part in a huge range of activities from a muddy assault course to aeroballe, archery, bread making, visiting a market and Mont Saint Michel, eating garlicky snails and petting the cute baby rabbits. Every group had a French lesson, where they practised key skills for their GCSE speaking exams, and the year 11 group completed a mock oral. The château turned out to be a beautiful setting for all of this, out in the countryside, surrounded by nature, tame rabbits and peacocks (which were all called Kevin) and lovely old buildings, especially in the unexpectedly sunny warm weather. But the best part of the week was the improvements that were noticeable in the students’ French. Everyone, from the shyest to the most confident, was understanding and communicating far more by the end of the week, and the chateau offered a range of tasks at different levels so that everyone had a chance to explore their limits. The teachers on the trip were Miss Ashburner, Miss Turton and Mrs Gill they really enjoyed the trip and practised their French too. They were really impressed with how the group adapted to the French environment and took part with enthusiasm. They were genuinely outstanding ambassadors for the school and a number of the animateurs commented on what a lovely group they were.

Here are some of the comments we’ve had from pupils and parents:

“I 100% think that the trip should be run again and I would recommend it to the younger years just so that they can have the experience of living a French life for a week.”


“I loved the parcours de santé and the whole experience was extremely fun and helpful for my French.”

“The Examen Oral was really useful, even if it was terrifying.”


“I liked how big the chateau was and how friendly everyone was. This trip made a large improvement to my French, I now understand more and have picked up loads more French vocabulary and I think that it has improved my confidence. I strongly think this trip should be run again, and I would recommend it to others.”

“If I had the chance to go back there, I 100% would!”


I really liked the idea of only teaching in French which made it so that you had to pay full attention and try to understand as much as possible making your listening skills better”


“Dear Miss Ashburner

My son doesn’t tell me very much about anything generally, but he was very talkative about this trip! He said it was “such a good trip” and “really fun”!

He really enjoyed the variety of activities. I heard all about the bread making, the snails and the bunnies. Also the archery was a hit! (Haha, sorry)

He is looking forward to next year when you might possibly go again!”


"My favourite activity was le parcours de sante because to start off the week we had an amazing interactive, muddy and exciting activity. The best bit was spreading mud onto our faces and then swinging on a rope swing across the river- and hoping not to fall in! However, at the same time, on each activity we were learning awesome French, such as singing French campfire songs and at every meal time repeating this phrase which made us all laugh, 'Je voudrais, encore, du pain, s'il vous plait'- don't think I am ever going to forget that again! It was a fantastic week, with great activities, fun, learning and excursions such as the French market, that have all helped significantly with my French!"


“Dear Miss Ashburner

……. He had a great time and apparently he and his mates want to go next year too!

Thanks for organising and running the trip and thanks also for looking after both my boys so well on numerous trips over the years, I really appreciate all that you have done for them.

Many thanks” 


“Dear Miss Ashburner,

I just wanted to reiterate my thanks to you, and the other staff, for your time and effort, on the French trip.

My daughter clearly had a great time and has been telling us lots of things and speaking French too. She enjoyed the food, even the two snails! It really does sound like a very successful trip.

She said the total immersion worked very well.

The lack of WiFi also seems like it had a very beneficial effect too which I think the children actually recognised.”

‘’L'excursion était trés amusante. Mon activité préféré était l'orientation car nous sommes allés en groupe et nous avons exploré pendant que nous avons trouvé beaucoup de balises.’’ 

On March 1st – 3rd 2019, Therfield School netball team took part in a PGL tournament weekend, officiated by England Netball umpires. It’s a weekend of intensive match experience that helps improve skills and technique. The schedule of games allows each team maximum match experience, the chance to compete against other schools and clubs and also the opportunity to learn from watching other teams play. The tournament closes with a special presentation of medals and trophies by Eboni Beckford – Chambers, a member of the England netball team.

The weekend brought success for the Year7 team as they won four matches, drew one match and lost one match. This achievement got them through to the Semi-Final where Year 7 students played some of their best netball to date. The team lost 4-2 in the semi-final and came third overall receiving bronze medals.   Player of the tournament was awarded to Grace P for excellent movement around the court and perseverance and Katie M for her outstanding performance in every match as centre court player. The Year 8 team also played extremely well but the competition was fierce and consequently just missed out on the semi-finals. Amba C was selected as player of the tournament as she took the lead with the Year 8 team and managed the formations well whilst also supporting Year 7 players.

The football group received coaching from UEFA B (FA) qualified coaches. The coaching programme focused on developing a range of techniques and movements as well as strong personal skills to deal with life on and off the pitch – every player was challenged whilst being encouraged to learn and apply new skills. The students demonstrated a real improvement in their attacking play through showing a strong ability to attempt to beat opposition both 1vs1 and using a team mate as support. All students performed to a very high level whilst also demonstrating a positive attitude and sportsmanship, in particular Jamie L, Billy O, Mihai C, Max L and Ben H. In the afternoon, the boys took part in adventure activities such as vertical climb, mountain biking and aero ball. These exciting adventure activities helped to improve team spirit, social skills and peer support.

Overall, the weekend at PGL was a great success and encouraged our students to face different challenges and develop skills such as encouragement, teamwork and communication skills whilst raising the morale, fitness and enthusiasm. 

Year 11 Geography students were out in Leatherhead Town Centre Wednesday afternoon to complete the human fieldwork part of their course. They are assessed on this within the exam and are asked questions relating to their own fieldwork investigation which they have carried out. Students needed to complete environmental quality surveys, land use surveys and ask volunteers questions about Leatherhead High Street. Overall, students gained a lot of knowledge and it was an enjoyable afternoon.

To promote the importance of community and sustainability for the environment, the year 10 community leaders organised a junk modelling competition. Thursday lunchtime each house had to create their house animal using ‘junk’ which students had collected. There was a lot of enthusiasm, resilience and creativity shown from all groups and this resulted in some recognisable animals. Well done to everyone who took part and Polesden for the winning animal!


“Be Kind.  Work Hard.  Play Hard.  Enjoy Yourself.”


James Malley

Friday 8th February

I had an interesting to start to 2019. On the first day of term I received a phone call from Ofsted alerting me that our next Inspection would be the following day! Although there are a few ‘horror stories‘ around about Ofsted I knew we had a great school to show off and so it proved. If you haven’t been able to read the letter you can find it here. It was very pleasing to note the following aspects included in the report:

  • There are strong relationships between staff and pupils that underpin a positive atmosphere in which pupils want to learn.
  • Pupils enjoy coming to school and told inspectors that teachers care about them and lessons are fun.
  • In lessons, they work well together and are confident to express their ideas.
  • Classes are orderly and pupils respond well to teachers’ requests. They set to work quickly and work very well together.
  • Therfield is a friendly and welcoming school where inclusion really matters.
  • The inclusive nature of the school means that staff go to great lengths to help pupils manage their behaviour and support their learning and development.
  • The school is characterised by a nurturing and caring ethos.
  • Parents appreciate the caring ethos and the efforts of staff to help their children succeed.
  • Students behave well around the school and are friendly and polite to visitors.
  • In class, inspectors saw pupils keen to learn and eager to be rewarded for their efforts.
  • Staff know their pupils well and provide high-quality support to develop pupils’ learning.
  • Leaders have ensured that there is a strong culture of safeguarding within the school.
  • Pupils who responded to the online questionnaire, and those interviewed by inspectors, said that they felt safe in school.
  • The rising number of pupils on roll is evidence that the school is gaining the confidence of the local community.

Of course an Ofsted inspection will come and go every few years but the ‘business’ of school goes on. Our aim at Therfield is to provide the highest quality lessons and excellent opportunities so that students have the ambition to be leaders and learners throughout the twenty first century. There have been a number of great events already in 2019 which have shown the “Excellence. Leadership. Opportunity” in action.

There is one event every year that doesn’t involve any students at all, yet is extremely important to support learning throughout the school and beyond. Our TeachMeet brought 120 teachers from over 20 schools together to share ideas and strategies to develop learning. As always Therfield staff contributed superbly to the event and I’ve particularly enjoy seeing the shared ideas ‘live’ in lessons since the TeachMeet.

The Careers Fair involves every Therfield student. It’s a privilege as Headteacher to observe the 1000s of conversations about future careers, apprenticeship, university options and a range of other opportunities. Over 100 adults gave up their valuable time to support this special event and everyone at school is very appreciative of that.

Last week (after a 15 year wait!) students and teachers finally moved into the new Drama Studio. From my conversations with them everyone is enjoying the new space and I’ve already witnessed some great lessons. The High Sheriff of Surrey has kindly agreed to formally open the studio on Wednesday 13th February.

Isobel D in Year 13 talks about the fantastic opportunity of the Cern trip…. Arriving in Geneva after a very speedy flight from Gatwick, we were able to have a few hours wandering around the old town and Lake Geneva taking in the sights. The following morning, excited, we headed for CERN on the tram, we checked out the exhibitions, survived the busy canteen and headed for a lecture. Joined by a researcher at CERN we found out that we were unable to go underground, but we were able to visit the ATLAS building and the cryogenic test facility, where they cool the accelerators. It was fascinating to see the machinery behind the colliders. The guide explained to us how they use over 9,000 magnets and that it needs 120 megawatts of electricity to be powered! On the final day, we headed for the History of Science and Natural History museums. Overall it was a trip that was thoroughly enjoyed by us all.

There are a number of great opportunities coming in the next few weeks. These include the Year 7 PGL trip, the French speaking immersion week in Normandy and the ski trip will follow those in April. Of course we are also moving towards ‘exam season’ for all students and it’s been a pleasure observing the progress made by our Year 11 students as they go through their mock preparation for GCSE exams. As you know from my ‘sign off’ from every blog I write I think success comes to everyone who follows the 8 words below and it’s great to see so many students being so successful because of their excellent approach to school life.


“Be Kind.  Work Hard.  Play Hard.  Enjoy Yourself.”


James Malley