• Two Awards For DACA At Lancashire School Awards

    Date: July 6th 2016

    Darwen Aldridge Community Academy scooped two prizes at awards celebrating the cream of East Lancashire’s teachers, pupils, schools and support staff. At the annual Lancashire Telegraph’s Schools Awards DACA student Lewis Partington was named Secondary School Pupil of the Year, whilst the Unsung Hero award went to school counsellor Les Ince.

  • PACA Wins Brighton Community School of the Year Award

    Date: June 14th 2016

    Portslade Aldridge Community Academy (PACA) has won the Youth in Action Community School of the Year at the annual awards hosted by The Argus at the Amex Stadium. PACA received a record breaking 78 nominations for the award and teacher Dean Flynn told the audience he could not wait to show it off in school.

    PACA was also nominated in the following categories

    STEM teacher of the year – Dr Caroline Operandi

    Staff member – Liz I’Anson

    Student of the year – Jamie Henville

  • Billy Walpole from Darwen Aldridge Community Academy becomes Grade 5 Men’s Pair Gymnastics British Champion

    Date: May 27th 2016

    We are delighted to announce the prestigious achievement of Billy Walpole, a Year 9 pupil at Darwen Aldridge Community Academy. On Sunday 15th May 2016, along with his team mate Richard Crewe, a pupil at St. Bede's Blackburn, they become Grade 5 Men's Pair British Champions in Acrobatic Gymnastics.
    Well done to both Billy and Richard for their fantastic achievement.


  • Darwen Vale Students Named Campaigners of the Year

    Date: May 26th 2016

    The SHINE Group at Darwen Vale High School was set up in response to group of girls who wanted a discuss issues surrounding self-esteem, body image and self-perception. They felt young people had mixed messages surrounding healthy and unhealthy relationships.

    Students at the SHINE awardsThe group continued to work on these issues from Year 7- Year 11 and are very proud of the legacy that they have left. They were pleased to be invited to share a few comments with the National Women’s Aid Conference and in March this year they were nominated for an award for Young Campaigners of the Year, which they won.  The award was presented by Jaffer Ali Hussain who is the Chief Executive Officer of Strengthening Links between the Youth and Networks, Communities and Specialists (SLYNCS).

    Well done to India Adcroft, Devon Ormerod-Banks, Abbie Smith and Baish Nicoll. You can read their full story here.

  • KAA Year 7’s Reach Championship Final

    Date: May 17th 2016

    After a successful season in the QPR schools league, the Kensington Aldridge Academy year 7 football team earned a place in the Championship final, held at Loftus Road on Sunday 15th May. It was an amazing experience for the players, having the opportunity to use the stadium facilities and play at their local professional club. The team anticipated a tough game against Fulham Boys, but were hopeful given their victory over the same team during their previous fixture.

    The atmosphere in the stadium was electric, with family, friends and teachers from both schools roaring their support from the warm-up through to the final whistle. It made for an entertaining game and something the players will never forget. KAA made a tense start and had to be resilient in defence to hold off the FB attack. At half-time the game was tied at 0-0 and everything was still to play for. Unfortunately, FB were able to step up their play in the latter stages of the second half and with tired legs, the KAA team began to give away opportunities on goal. Carlos was on top form, pulling off a string of fantastic saves. However, it wasn’t to be and with just 6 minutes left, FB managed to score 3 goals to secure the cup.

    Bad luck to the team but congratulations on a great season!

  • PACA’s STEM Centre Shortlisted for TES Schools Award

    Date: May 17th 2016

    Portslade Aldridge Community Academy’s STEM centre has been shortlisted for a TES Schools Award. The award recognises excellence and innovative teaching within science, technology and engineering. The judges have seen clear examples of innovative evidence from PACA and we hope that this will help the Academy pick up the award!

    The TES Schools Awards are now in their eight year and they celebrate the extraordinary commitment and quality shown by both teachers and support staff across the UK.The awards ceremony will take place on the evening of Friday 24 June 2016 at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London.


  • Former DACA student receives prestigious British Army award

    Date: May 12th 2016

    A former Darwen Aldridge Community Academy student has received a prestigious British Army award after finishing top in his recruit training. Private Daniel Hayden, 18, has won the Parachute Regiment Best Recruit Award after successfully completing the combat infantryman’s course in Catterick, North Yorkshire.

    The award is judged by the platoon’s training team and goes to the trainee who has put in the best overall performance, displaying an aptitude for being an infantryman and being fit, tough and resilient during the 28-week course.

    The former DACA student said he has always had an ambition to become a paratrooper and is delighted to have received the accolade.“I have wanted to be a paratrooper since I was about 14. The Parachute Regiment is an elite unit and I think their standards are the highest in the British Army. Receiving this award is quite an honour for me.”

    Only one recruit per platoon receives the award, so there are only five or six awards given out each year.

    His platoon commander, Captain Tom Hand, said: “Private Hayden has won the Best Recruit award. “He is a mentally and physically robust character who has excelled on what is a gruelling six-month course.

    “He has the confidence and nous of a much more experienced soldier.”

  • BACA Year 7s Win The League

    Date: April 15th 2016

    Congratulations to Brighton Aldridge Community Academy’s year 7 boys football team who have won the regional Division 2 League.

  • PACA’s Madi Represents South East at National Trampoline competition

    Date: April 8th 2016

    A young trampolinist from Portslade Aldridge Community Academy is hoping to inspire others to get bouncing with her success.

    Madi Farley, 14, of Portslade, is juggling her GCSES with springing up the leader board of the country’s best bouncers.

    The PACA student is now set to represent the South East at the National Development Plan Trampoline competition in Birmingham in May.

    Madi – who only took up the sport two years ago and trains with the Rise Trampoline Club – said: “It’s quite exciting to have got this far. I’m really happy.”

    “I train two hours on Mondays and two hours on Thursdays and it can be a bit tricky fitting it all in around my mocks. I started off doing gymnastics and then went from there on to trampolining and I just love it. It’s so much fun.”

    Madi hopes to win the Birmingham competition and reach the finals along with the eight best trampolinists in the country. She reached the semi-finals in last year’s competition too.

    Full story at the Brighton Argus website.

  • PACA Students Reach National Science & Engineering Final

    Date: March 24th 2016

    Five students from Portslade Aldridge Community Academy were finalists in the National Science + Engineering Competition 2016 when its staged its National Awards Ceremony as part of the annual Big Bang Fair at the NEC in Birmingham in March.

    The National Science + Engineering Competition, organised by the British Science Association, is an annual contest open to pupils aged between 11-18, and gives participants the chance to compete for top prizes and international experiences worth over £50,000.

    Dexter Shepherd, Morgan Pile, Joshua Hassett, Harry Smith and Guolin Yang were selected from thousands of applicants to make it through to the Finals. Although the top prize went to Watford Grammar School for Girls the PACA team did a brilliant job of presenting their “Starburst Element” project.

  • UTC@MediaCityUK Students Impress Magnetic North

    Date: March 24th 2016

    Last week, UTC@MediaCityUK students headed over to the Magnetic North’s studio to pitch their vision pieces on the future of digital to help celebrate mN’s fifteenth anniversary as a digital design studio. For the competition students born the same year as mN were asked to create an idea that looked to the next 15 years in digital product and service design.

    For the final the students had to condense their presentations and deliver them in the form of an elevator pitch, lasting just three minutes. Within this time, the students explained their concepts and presented their vision pieces; leaving lots of time for questions. nM’s design and technical team were impressed by their delivery and fresh perspectives offered and awarded first prize to  TV and Film students Katie, Jessica and Caitlyn  who pitched Givechester – an app to help the homeless on the future of the digital industry.

    Read the full story including some great ideas from other finalists on the Magnetic North website.

  • Stephen Wins First International Medal

    Date: January 27th 2016

    BACA student Stephen FerroniCongratulations to Brighton Aldridge Community Academy sixth former and cross-country runner Stephen Ferroni on winning his first international medal for England in Spain.

  • DigiDaz named as Young Start-up Talent finalists

    Date: January 25th 2016

    DigiDaz, a company formed by a group of Brighton Aldridge Community Academy sixth formers, has been named as finalists in this year’s Brighton and Hove Young Start Up Talent competition

    The sixth formers, Jordan Back, Tristan Kibble, Callum Sexton and Robbie Down, want to use their business to educate the gaming community through video games themselves. Tristan said: “This process has allowed me to become a better businessman and prepare for the future.”

    In the autumn term DigiDaz hosted successful FIFA football tournaments for students in years 7, 8 and 9 along with a highly competitive tournament amongst staff members. The team’s future plans are to offer a wider range of games and extend their offer to other schools across Brighton and Hove.

    To help them achieve their goals they applied to Young Start-up Talent, and after intense 1-2-1 and Dragon’s Den style pitches they were named as finalists. The winner of the competition will be named on 16 February at Sea Life Brighton, and will walk away with £50K of business funding.

  • Darwen Academy’s Young Spine Chillers To Be Published

    Date: January 25th 2016

    Three students, from the Darwen Aldridge Community Academy Young Writers’ Club, entered the Spine Chillers Competition in December 2015. Nicola Topping, Trinity Lee and Ebony Southworth are all competition finalists and their stories will be published in the Young Writers Spine Chillers – Northern Terrors Anthology on 30 April 2016.

    Previously, our student finalist in the 2015 Grim Tales Competition was Holly Thompson (15 years old), whose story was published in the Young Writers Grim Tales – Lancashire Anthology 2015.

    The Academy said: “The students are creative and dedicated writers, who have achieved their first author goals at a really young age and we can only imagine that they will all go on to become influential writers in the future.”

  • KAA Year 8s Dominate Borough Athletics Festival

    Date: January 25th 2016

    The Kensington Aldridge Academy year 8 athletics team turned in great performances at the Year 8 Sportshall Athletics Festival in January. Five Schools from the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea competed in the festival, delivering top quality performances. The event was organised by the EPIC sports team with teams competing for the crown of Borough Champions.

    The KAA boys team proved too strong for their counterparts, winning 5 out of 12 events. We were crowned champions after the series of entertaining events. As the winning team we will be representing the borough in the upcoming London School Games preliminary round.

    The girls team narrowly missed out on first place, as they were just 7 points behind the winners. They performed admirably and should be proud of their second place finish.

    Team Sheet: Jeriel (8 Kidston), Ezekiel (8 Simmons), Cameron (8 Balon), Ali O (8 Dyson), Bilal E (8 Berners-Lee), Miles A (8 Dyson), Kashele (8 Jobs), Tahana (8 Balon), Jeanette (8 Simmons), Jennifer (8 Winfrey), Victoria (8 Jobs) and Key’Erra (8 Berners-Lee).

  • UTC Celebrates First NCS Graduates

    Date: December 22nd 2015

    Eight UTC@harbourside Year 12 students took part in the autumn term five day residential leadership and team building National Citizenship Service programme.

    They returned from this experience buzzing after completing a variety of exciting outdoor activities including rock climbing, Jacob’s Ladder, capture the flag and a tug of war! Most stated that it was a great overall experience where they got to take part in lots of activities they wouldn’t normally have the opportunity to do.

    The second part of the programme was self-developed community projects that students identify and lead themselves. They chose to bake cakes, sell them in school and use the money to fund a money and awareness raising event in aid of the East Sussex Association of Blind and Partially Sighted People – these have now been completed and the UTC has its first set of NCS graduates!

  • Studio Student Shannon Chosen To Illustrate Book

    Date: December 22nd 2015

    Shannon Adams, a 17-year-old sixth form student at Darwen Aldridge Enterprise Studio, has been commissioned by Danish author Jens Patrick, who lives locally, to provide sketches for his forthcoming book on the Viking occupation of Britain.

    Shannon achieved A* grades in graphic art and digital photography at the school last summer and is now studying A Levels in both subjects, alongside a course in TV production.

    Jens, who came upon the Studio by chance when out in Darwen, said he was delighted to have found such a talented illustrator so close to home. He said: “I’m really excited to be working with Shannon. Her drawings bring the main characters in the book to life and capture their spirit in exactly the way I had hoped.”

    Shannon has ambitions to go on to university and then pursue a career in the creative sector. Ruth Bradbury, Studio school Principal, said: “I’m immensely proud of what Shannon has achieved with us so far, and I’m sure she is destined for much more success in the future.”

  • Darwen Vale Student Saves Dad’s Life

    Date: December 21st 2015

    Darwen Vale student Joe-Jo Nicolson has been presented with a special award from the school after performing essential first aid which saved his Dad’s life following an incident at home.

    12 year old Joe-Jo gave his dad Graeme lifesaving first aid after finding him unconscious at the bottom of the stairs after suffering a suspected fit or stroke. Joe had learnt about this aspect of First Aid at a Super Learning Day at Darwen Vale.

    Joe-Jo was given a special achievement award from the Principal and Governing Body for his exceptional conduct. Fiona Jack, Darwen Vale Community Academy principal, said: “It’s hard to put into words how proud we are of him.”

    See the full story in our News section.

  • Portslade Science Students Reach National Competition Finals

    Date: December 21st 2015

    Portslade Aldridge Community Academy have reached the finals of the National Science and Engineering Competition, which will be held at the NEC in Birmingham in March 2016.

    These finals showcase the very best of young scientists and engineers in the UK. The project will be displayed on a stand next to other exhibitors such as GSK, Siemens, Rolls-Royce and BAE systems. The organisers have had a record number of entries this year and the standard was extremely high. Finalists will compete for prizes and experiences including the prestigious titles of UK Young Engineer(s) and Young Scientist(s) of the Year.

    Congratulations to Portslade students Guolin Yang, Harry Smith, Joshua Hassett, Dexter Shepherd and Morgan Pile for putting together an excellent project during the STEM sessions and writing a winning proposal. Their success caps a wonderful year for the STEM team at the Academy.

  • Brighton Teacher Recognised At Safety Net Awards

    Date: December 17th 2015

    Brighton Aldridge Community Academy’s Child Protection Officer Mrs Christine Brady was awarded for Best Use of Services – Referrals Award at the Safety Net Awards Ceremony held to celebrate the organisation’s 20th year of supporting children and young people in Brighton & Hove.

    Mrs Brady’s award reflects the important role she plays in the Academy helping to improve student’s confidence and keeping them safe. Nikki Burke, former student, said “Christine always goes above and beyond to help students.  She creates an atmosphere that feels like a little home.  She would take me to my meeting so I felt looked after and improved my confidence by encouraging me to help younger students with their work.  Christine is excellent at her job and I couldn’t think of anyone more deserving for the award.”