The Principal and Head of Admissions give fascinating insights into College Life at this year's General Meeting of the Liverpool College Foundation (LCF) on 20th January 2021.
The Principal, Mr Hans Broekman, gave his report to the members of the LCF on how the school is managing life and lessons during Lockdown 3 (January 2021 ongoing).
Highlights include the school recently receiving its 9th "Outstanding Award" from The Department of Education regarding managing its boarding side.
"Liverpool College is the only school in England with 9 Outstanding Awards."
Learning from the first Lockdown in March 2020, the school now does the teaching of the entire timetable online because of the dedication put in by all members of staff.
Mr Broekman commented that attendance at online school for Year 2 (age 6) was higher than if operating as usual.
Because of the comprehensive online teaching, only 4% - 5% of pupils are coming into school. In the vast majority of cases, these are children for whom there is a safeguarding issue or are the children of essential workers.
The school maintains a huge pastoral focus for its pupils, and this includes members of staff visiting the homes of children who were not engaging with the syllabus.
The College is a testing centre for Covid. Testing of Pupils occurs twice a week, but a pupil can ask for a test anytime.
Turning to happier matters, Mr Broekman reported that further building work would occur with the increased numbers on the school roll, as the funding already has an agreement. He stressed and thanked the LCF for their practical and financial support to help fund the new classrooms built on the old swimming pool site.
"Without the support of the LCF, these classrooms and the refurbishment of Beechlands would not have happened",
Following on from this, we can report Beechlands is ready to receive boarders once Covid restrictions allow it. The Principal has the final decision on who boards, but we are pleased to note that Liverpool City Council will pay the boarding fees of those pupils to Liverpool College when it happens.
Last year, Liverpool College entered five candidates for Oxbridge. This year ten are making applications. Six to Cambridge and four to Oxford, of whom two are applying to study Classics. He also noted this number was higher than either Merchant Taylors, The Blue Coat, or Birkenhead could manage!
"Learning with Character; destroying the effects of disadvantage."
Mrs Sally Loveridge
Mrs Sally Loveridge, Head of Admissions, then gave a most illuminating report on admission numbers' history to the College and revealed what work goes into allocating places.
Sally started by commenting that admissions had gently declined since the turn of the Millennium. In 2011 when the school announced it was converting to Academy status and the charging of fees would stop, there was an immediate increase in 2012 even though fees were still payable that year.
Since then, numbers have increased steadily. Applications to enrol children at the school have grown even more quickly. In Year 7 (age 11/12), just 500 applied to join in 2013. Every year after that, numbers had increased to the current year when 1707 potential pupils applied for 148 places. These numbers make Liverpool College the most over-subscribed school in the North West.
Strict (external) criteria allocate places in year 7. Once all but the discretionary categories are filled, there were just nine spaces available. Similar to the adjudication seen on The National Lottery, random name-selecting software chooses who fill those places.
Whilst there is more to Sally's job than she modestly describes here, the presentation was an "eye-opener" to the Admissions Officer's work.
The LCF would like to thank Hans and Sally for their time and presentations.