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We're still in recovery from our recent cyber attack. Thankfully, not everything has a microprocessor. Thank you to all our staff, students and families for being patient and working through it!


Due to current technical difficulties, the following letter is not currently on our website:


The academy's internet is down and as a result, students will be unable to connect to online lessons today (29 March). Our email system is also affected. If you have an urgent message, please contact us by telephone 0208 681 1141


Term Dates for the next academic year are now on our website:


Our staff have put together Easter care packages for families eligible for Free School Meals. They contain recipes and ingredients for at least 4 nutritious meals, along with activities to promote a health mind and body. Please register via the letter:


A letter regarding home testing kits is now on our website:


Our Sports Hall is now a rapid lateral flow testing centre, ready for the start of the Government's mass testing in schools programme! Teachers and support staff are trained and ready to guide you through the test. We're looking forward to seeing you all!


Retweetd From Coulsdon Sixth Form College

Are you considering your College options? Join us at our virtual Career Pathway events in March and discover where your chosen courses could take you. Book your place now:


Letters regarding our reopening this month are on our website. Please follow the link within the letter to give consent for COVID testing on-site. Thank you in advance!


Year 12 Parents and Carers' Evening is on Thursday 25th March 2021! Follow the link for more information and to view your pre-booked appointments:


We are delighted our students will be returning to school in just under 2 weeks. Please read our letter from the Principal regarding our reopening on 8th March 2021


We have a number of LGBTQ+ tasks for our students to attempt this term including lip-syncing to a well-know song, recreating the inclusive rainbow flag and designing a LGBTQ+ Month logo. Have a look at these slides to find out more:


Our virtual Year 8 Parents' Evening is approaching (25th February 2021). There is a letter on our website explaining how this process works:


Leilani has submitted a homemade lava lamp for the Faculty Challenge


National Apprenticeship Week is approaching! Check out our website for online events you can get involved in!


It is Year 9 Parents' Evening on Thursday (4 Feb). Check our website for information on how to attend virtually...


Mr Ahmad is pleased to announce the launch of our Faculty Events and Competitions. This is a great opportunity to take part in some fun and interesting activities, earning points for your faculty in the process. Check out this short video to find out more:


Literacy for Learning have a number of conferences for students and parents to enjoy, starting today at 4pm with a keynote speech from Alex Quigly entitled ‘Literacy in Secondary School – Successful Ways Forward’. Check our website for links and timetable:


If you have any concerns about a student's mental health or wellbeing, please complete this form to assist us in providing help and support for the student:

Harris Academies
All Academies in our Federation aim to transform the lives of the students they serve by bringing about rapid improvement in examination results, personal development and aspiration.

Central Office















Teaching & Learning

Aims and Ethos

At Harris Academy Purley we aim to provide outstanding teaching that meet the needs and aspirations of all students, promoting a view of learning as a shared responsibility and resulting in both rapid progress and high attainment.

It is the goal of the academy to move from being an outstanding school to an exceptional one, recognised in London for its consistent and significant performance and to be the first choice for local parents.  



The HAPU 10 represent best practice in learning and teaching at Harris Academy Purley.  Each element represents a standard we strive towards in every lesson.  These form the focus of feedback in lesson observations.

Hapu 10 website

Excellent classroom practice takes many forms but outstanding teaching typically produces learning that comes under the following:


Exhibits understanding of both the curriculum and subject

Excellent teaching ensures that learners have a deep understanding of their subjects, with the ability to understand underlying issues and connections – it is not mechanical, or performative. Moreover, students have an overview of the curriculum and how the different topics and skills integrate. 

It is especially important that externally examined year groups have a clear understanding of examination structure and rubrics to enable them to deploy their learning effectively, but this understanding should be built into KS3 teaching, where appropriate, under the new 1-9 structure. 


Balances and integrates skills and knowledge

A strong distinction between skills and knowledge misunderstands how student learn; whilst clearly there is variation between subjects and individual lessons, students at the concrete operational stage require a clear context in which to apply their practical and examination skills and knowledge is retained more effectively when it is applied. 


Is characterised by high expectations

Outstanding learning means that students should surpass the progress and attainment suggested by national targets. Excellent teaching therefore requires challenging expectations, with objectives that 'teach to the top'.


Scaffolds independence

In combination with high expectations excellent teaching differentiates so that all types of learner can access and succeed. It is important that support retains challenge, so that learners are guided but that their learning activities are still meaningful. Teachers should work closely with support staff to ensure that students with SEND have their needs met whilst ensuring that the student is fully engaged. The outcome is the learning, not the activity.


Builds through sequences of lessons 

Excellent learning and teaching is sequential, building throughout the academic year and courses. Pace, challenge and engagement are essential ingredients to outstanding lessons, but should not be at the expense of deeper understanding and long-term retainment of knowledge. The current OFSTED inspection framework correctly identifies that learning is not episodic and that the occasional 'fire-work lesson' for an observation rarely best serves the needs of students. 

It is critical that teachers, especially curriculum managers, ensure that schemes of work, learning materials, literacy, assessment and feedback documents are of good quality and, where possible, standardised to maximise accessibility to students and consistently high standards across subjects and faculties. 


Makes effective use of assessment & feedback

Appropriate assessment and feedback will vary across age and subject, but outstanding assessment will have high levels and accuracy and reliability with outstanding feedback enabling students to make rapid progress. Excellent assessment & feedback is never performative – it should inform the planning of teaching and be a learning experience for the student. 

Formal marking is time-consuming and inevitably results in trade-offs:

Excellence practice in your teaching depends on getting the correct mix for your subject and student age group e.g.: 

Younger students will benefit from higher frequency and lower quantities of feedback as retention of the skills and knowledge is our priority and they struggle to assimilate large quantities of written feedback – it may in fact be demotivating. 

Where pieces of work are extended, such as a Year 13 Humanities essay, the quality of the insight in the feedback is more often key to them cracking the problem. Skills activities benefit from regular practice, whereas recall of knowledge is more indicative of the quality of learning and revision.   

Clarity of the instruction, practice of the assessment skills and modelling of high quality answers, in combination with effective structuring of revision, can all reduce wasteful assessment where the teacher uses valuable planning time correcting avoidable errors. 

Better to ensure students give their best effort first time than endlessly correct.


Is shared throughout the Academy

Some of the most effective learning occurs when students collaborate together – whether this be through group work, buddying relationships, or other peer to peer learning opportunities. This builds the value of scholarship and establishes the Academy as a community of learning. 

Similarly, as a learning organisation it is essential that we spread the excellent practice of our teaching and support staff. It is all out shared responsibility to develop and challenge our colleagues, and all benefit when skills and insights are shared democratically, not hoarded. We will unashamedly celebrate the success of our outstanding learning and teaching and those who actively contribute to sharing best practice.


Annual Harris Federation Conference

Over 4,000 staff attend the annual Harris Federation conference at ExCel London. Over 65 training sessions are offered to our staff, ranging from topics such as 'Thriving Classrooms' to 'Staff Leadership'.


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