Who are ‘Excelsior’ students?

The Excelsior programme encompasses students that are the ‘most able’. These are students that arrived in Year 7 with high attainment Levels from KS2 or have made this level of expected progress since joining The Petchey Academy. The Excelsior programme supports the academy’s motto: “Inspiring and supporting every child.”

Excelsior Mission Statements

In order to raise the attainment of all our Excelsior students, the programme is structured into four headings: extend, experience, achieve and aspire.

  • All Excelsior students will be achieve exceptional results though stretch and challenge to extend their learning in every lesson, every day.
  • Students will aspire to attend the most competitive universities and to attain the most prestigious careers. Students and their families will be supported to make this a reality.
  • The students’ experience of being an ‘Excelsior’ student will enrich their learning experiences beyond the curriculum, and inspire a deep seated love of learning.
  • The students will role model outstanding learning and be proud of being Excelsior.

Below outlines basic principles of the four headings:


  • Students are exposed to a rich and rigorous curriculum, that embodies stretch and challenge learning activities.
  • Students are challenged to complete higher ability home learning and cross-curricular projects designed to develop independent learning skills.


  • Bespoke weekly clubs are designed solely for Excelsior students.
  • Enhancement programmes with partner organisations, including businesses based in the City.


  • Effective monitoring of Excelsior as a discrete group is conducted by all staff
  • Strategic intervention to improve student progress is implemented where needed


All Excelsior students follow a programme of events, which involve:

  • University visits
  • Careers talks and guidance
  • Oxbridge partnerships

A flavour of the exciting opportunities for Excelsior students during 2016-2107:

  • Year 7 Cambridge trip – 30 students had the opportunity to visit Clare College, Cambridge.
  • Year 8 City University trip – students took part in university style workshops and participated in sessions within their Media faculty.
  • Year 9 Careers in Focus – a 6 week programme of workshops delivered by professionals across a variety of industries to expose students. This culminated in a celebratory day at Kings College, London.
  • Year 10 Lawyers in School - 12 week programme with professional lawyers running workshops exploring different types of law. Final session was held at the offices of the law firm, Travers Smith.
  • Year 10 UBS Trip – students took part in an apprentice style workshop where they had to design and pitch a product.
  • UG – students have taken part in Easter school at Oxbridge and other Russell Group universities. They have all been assigned a professional mentor.