The Foundation is the idea of Gary Coy. Gary was a Governor at Rowdown from September 2011 to November 2014. He is not local to New Addington but has lived in the borough of Croydon for over 30 years. On becoming a Governor, Gary was struck by the contrast between the deprivation in New Addington and the enthusiasm and happy demeanour of the vast majority of the pupils.
The school and its staff do a wonderful job in ensuring that most of the children leave the school with a good level of academic attainment. But the school also excels in its extra-curricular offering to its pupils, thanks to the dedication of the staff. This means that the children at Rowdown receive not only a sound education, but have fun and enjoy their time at the school.
Gary wanted to go further than just being a Governor and has set up the Foundation to provide extra impetus. After talking to Rowdown’s Head Teacher at the time, Mrs Shute, and several other teachers and staff, Gary decided that the main focus should be on helping a few pupils of the school to have a dream beyond their normal horizons and then help them to fulfil their ambitions: hence the Inspire to Aspire theme. The school can only go so far in support of a talented child: it takes specialist teaching or coaching to take them to the next level, but parents simply cannot afford this. This is where the Foundation steps in to help.
We also recognise the need for parental buy-in to each child’s dream: without the encouragement of their Mum and Dad or carer, a child is unlikely to retain their own enthusiasm for very long. This led to the second objective of the charity: to support parental engagement in their child’s education and support parents to enhance the wellbeing of their children.
Gary has established a group of trustees that all can add value to the Foundation. All of these trustees have volunteered their time and enthusiasm for the Foundation and will ensure that our support is targeted effectively. Click here for a list of trustees and some brief background on each of them.
We have also recognised that as a small, targeted charity, we can only help a few pupils at a time; not nearly as many as we would like. So we have explored ways to expand without needing to spend! We are pleased that through our Tuition Programme we are now able to offer academic tuition to a wider group of pupils thanks to an agreement with Trinity School, a leading independent secondary school in Croydon, to provide extension Maths and English lessons on a Saturday morning to a group up to 20-25 New Addington pupils in Year 5 (and moving into Year 6). This has enabled us to approach the other primary schools in New Addington and they have all signed up to be part of this new programme. This is offered by Trinity at no cost to the primary schools, the families or the Foundation. And now Royal Russell School, another leading independent school just up the road from New Addington, is providing English and Maths Masterclasses for 20 Year 4 pupils from the area. Most will now receive two years of tuition ahead of 11+ exams for grammar and independent schools, levelling the playing field with their more affluent peers significantly and making a small contribution towards social mobility. In the first four years of the Tuition Programme we have helped 25 children reach a selective or semi-selective secondary school such as Wallington County Grammar School, Wilson’s, Croydon High, Old Palace, Royal Russell, Trinity, Whitgift and Woldingham. More information can be found here.
If you have any ideas or comments on the Foundation then please do contact us.