Executive Principal’s Message



Excelsior Academy opened in 2008 and has since become Newcastle’s most improved secondary school, consistently judged as good by Ofsted. With a unique and innovative approach to learning and teaching centred around the individual strengths, interests and needs of each pupil, our schools within a school model enables us to provide all our pupils with greater attention and care, and this shows in our academic results, particularly in terms of pupil progress.

Excelsior was also the first All Through School in Newcastle, offering education to pupils from 3 to 19 years of age. Our Rainbird Primary pupils have access to the same high quality teaching, exceptional facilities and fabulous resources, as enjoyed by pupils in the three Secondary schools – Collingwood, Hadrian and Milburn, and Excelsior College Sixth Form. Each of our schools has their own purpose built accommodation and is led by their own Principal with their own dedicated teaching, welfare and support staff teams. Our schools within a school model promotes an ethos of competitive collaboration, which in turn has led to year on year improvements in terms of examination results and positive pupil outcomes.

As Executive Principal it is my privilege and ambition to work with the governors, staff, pupils, parents and the wider community to maintain our upward trajectory and build on the outstanding work of my predecessor, Phil Marshall to continue our quest for ever higher levels of excellence.

The generous support of our sponsor, Lord Laidlaw of Rothiemay, enables the Academy to offer exceptional provision within and beyond the curriculum. The high quality of our work in the creative, visual and performing arts was recognised nationally in 2015 with the award of the prestigious ArtsMark Gold and our outstanding facilities and diverse range of opportunities offered through Sport continue to be a significant strength at Excelsior. Pupils also have the opportunity to experience a plethora of amazing educational trips and visits, such as our recent expedition to the Himalayas. Our sponsor’s support also enables a number of annual scholarship places to Merchiston Castle and St Georges Schools in Edinburgh, and the competition for a generous bursary to Newcastle, Northumbria or Leeds Universities, for exceptional candidates. All benefits provided by our sponsor are exclusive to Excelsior pupils and are in addition to other funding available to them.

I hope you enjoy looking at our website but it is no substitute for a visit. We look forward to welcoming you to experience our academy life and the exciting opportunities that our pupils enjoy.

Craig Taylor
Executive Principal
Excelsior Academy