History & Politics
Head of Department: Mrs K Amery (on maternity leave)
Acting Head of Department: A-level History & Politics: Miss M Conboy
Acting Head of Department: GCSE History: Mrs J Thelwell
The History department at West Kirby Grammar School consists of five teachers, who are all subject specialists. The department has four classrooms, all with i-TV technology. At Key Stage 3, students study History for two lessons a week covering everything from the Battle of Hastings to the Cold War. The idea is to give them a breadth of chronological understanding in the events that have shaped British History so that, even if they never study History again, they are left with a broad overview of the subject. Here they focus on developing their source evaluation skills and extended writing to meet the needs of the Key Stage 4 course. Trips at Key Stage Three include Speke Hall and the International Slavery Museum.
We offer an interesting and engaging GCSE course which usually attracts five teaching groups per year. Topics include Democracy and Dictatorship in Germany 1890-1945, Conflict and Tension 1894-1918, Power and the People c1170 - the Present Day and Elizabethan England c1568-1603. Students are offered a range of opportunities to bring their learning to life including visiting the Battlefields of WW1 in France and Belgium, studying the history of protest at the Peoples' Museum in Manchester and exploring the development of a nation state in our popular Berlin residential.
Many students continue to study History at A Level and there are usually two to three classes in the Sixth Form. Throughout the two years, students study Tsarist and Communist Russia 1855-1964 and the Making of Modern Britain 1951-2007. They also complete coursework on Nationalism in Ireland 1789 - 1922, which includes a tour of Dublin and Belfast.
The department is very proud of its public examination results with 73% of students achieving A* - A at GCSE in 2017. At A-level, 85% of students gained A* - B grades in 2017 and we pride ourselves at consistently achieving a 100% pass rate.
The Politics department at West Kirby Grammar School consists of three teachers who are all History and Politics specialists. Politics is offered at Key Stage 5 and gives students the opportunity to engage in debates and discussions on contemporary British and American political issues. Students study British politics in the first year and US politics in the second year. For both countries they study a variety of topics including political parties, pressure groups, elections, constitution and the legislature. Students also study political ideologies including conservatism, socialism, liberalism and feminism. The course usually attracts two A Level groups and the vast majority of students who opt to take it go on to study it at university level.
The department is very proud of its public examination results with 68% of students achieving A* - B grades at A-level in 2017.
Politics students at WKGS become very politically engaged and are involved in a multitude of ways outside of the classroom. They have been involved in election campaigns, rallies, vote counts and work experience with politicians. We offer a number of extra-curricular activities to facilitate the delivery of the course, including Youth Parliament debates, Youth Voice Conferences, our annual residential to Parliament and the Supreme Court in London, and trips to the European Parliament in Strasbourg. Students are also encouraged to attend local lectures and events, the likes of which have included Vince Cable and Gordon Brown in the past year. In school, we run mock elections, youth referenda and caucuses to engage younger students in politics. Finally, the Politics department has secured national success twice with the European Youth Parliament competition and we have had several students debate at international level in committees across Europe including Germany, Ireland, Latvia, Estonia and Finland.