38 THE RIVER MAGAZINE | Autumn 2017 | E D U C A T I O N | O riginally separate schools on different sites, Harris Upper and South Norwood academies became part of the Harris Federation of academies in 2007. The South East London- based Federation is the most successful Academies Trust in England. Today, fully amalgamated as Harris South Norwood, the co-educational school has one staff and governing body covering the twin sites which house 2,000 students. And, as part of its Outreach 2017-18, a series of events are planned over the coming school year with the Year 7 intake for September 2018 firmly in mind. The centrepiece is an Open Evening at 5pm on Wednesday September 20 at the school’s South site at Cumberlow Avenue. The evening, attended by all staff, features a talk from a head of school, while student guides show parents around to take in activities in all subject areas. They include a PE display and science experiments plus offerings from the Music and Art departments. “The evening enables parents to soak up the school’s atmosphere,”explained Mandy Marlow, jointly in charge of the intake programme. In addition, the school will hold a series of Open Mornings – September 26 (Upper site), October 3 and 10 (South site) – where parents can tour to see the school at work. There are also plans to visit local primaries. By March 2018 parents must choose their school and those opting for HASN are then invited to an evening in the summer term to meet staff and find out about practical issues such as uniforms.“It’s part of our extensive connection with parents whose children are joining the school which begins some time before the start of term in September,” says Mandy. As part of this, the new Year 7s attend an Enterprise Day in July and, once term begins, the school ensures that they settle in with a whole range of induction activities. There is also close pastoral care from staff plus a close relationship between seniors and juniors such as‘buddying’with prefects and student leaders. Another very positive factor is that, although the school Harris Academy South Norwood, one of the fastest-growing and increasingly-successful schools south of theThames, has launched an exciting programme for parents in Lambeth and Southwark by norman hayden reaches out Harris Academy