At SJL we pride ourselves on being an outstanding school with people at the heart and where the sense of community is strong. From the first month at school with our Prefects Picnic for the new year 7 students and their families, to the charity work across the years, students are encouraged to become involved in a variety of events that benefit both the school and our wider community. For us our community is not limited to local areas; our vision is local, national, global and this is reflected in the various work that we do.
In the local community a number of our Sixth Form students regularly visit homes for Senior Citizens and the disabled on a voluntary basis. At Christmas this year our Sixth Formers went carol singing at local homes and raised money for Keech Cottage Hospice singing carols in the snow outside Sainsbury's. The Christmas Carol concert at All Saints Church is an annual event and there is always a special performance on the Thursday afternoon for Senior Citizens.
The Music faculty contributes greatly to the local community and may often be found supporting at local events, holding a concert in town or playing at one of our local primary school’s Summer Fayres.
The Harpenden Village Rotary Club has supported the school for a number of years. Their annual School Leavers Award dinner is a great occasion when students from each of the three local schools are recognised for their ‘Service Before Self’. Over the years Rotary members have also supported Sixth Formers by offering interview practice before they go on university visits.
All year 12 students are also entered for the Perrins essay writing prize sponsored by Perrins Solicitors, Harpenden.
Our excellent facilities also mean we are able to host a number of sports fixtures and this enables us to continue to support our students during and beyond the school day. Our Young Enterprise team have run primary school Sports Days and events for students in the lower years.
As a training school we have many opportunities to share our teaching expertise with other teachers from around the country. This year teachers will be travelling far and wide to discover good practice from other schools so we can incorporate new ideas into our already innovative practice. We recognise that within SJL we are all learners and there are always ways to improve.
We are very lucky to have built a great partnership in the last two years with Danish schools. We have been visited by a number of Danish educationalists and some of our staff have visited Denmark to see the work in their schools.
Within the curriculum the Modern Foreign Languages’ Pen Friend scheme encourages our younger students to make friends that extend beyond our geographical boarders. Combined with opportunities for educational visits these often are the beginning of long-term friendships that enrich the lives of our students.
International travel opportunities continue to be part of the enrichment programme for out students. Our close links with Ndeke High School in Zambia have allowed students from both countries to visit each other and learn about school life.
World Challenge is aiming for Borneo in 2011 so students are working hard to raise funds.
The USA exchange for year 12 students is another part of our school experience that encourages students to learn from our global neighbours.
On all levels we encourage our students to develop a community spirit as encapsulated in our Sir John Lawes ACE: Achievement Care and Excellence.