School – Pleckgate High School


Based – Pleckgate Road, Blackburn


Number of pupils – 1,100


School mission/vision – Aspire, believe, act and succeed




IT takes a lot for any school or individual to win a Lancashire Telegraph Schools’ Award for two consecutive years – but that’s exactly what Pleckgate High School has done.


Its inspiring mix of strong progress in academic areas – particularly maths – fundraising for charities and the teachers’ passion for what they do impressed the judges.


Head teacher Mark Cocker said: “The school is making rapid progress particularly on outcomes so it is nice to be recognised locally as well as nationally.


"It has continued on it journey of improvement and this is the second successive year of positive outcomes.”


Mr Cocker, who joined the school in January 2016, said: “Pleckgate celebrated a second successive positive Progress 8 score and a 61 per cent pass rate for students achieving grades A*-C in both English and mathematics in their GCSE results last August, with a high percentage of students exceeding their expected progress in English and maths.


"Their 2017 mathematics results also placed the school in the top 5 per cent of schools nationally for the progress of all learners and top 3 per cent of schools in the UK for the progress of higher learners.


"After picking up last year’s award, Pleckgate went on to be awarded ‘Beacon of Success’ status by the Institute for Public Policy Research for the exceptional outcomes of disadvantaged students.


"The school has a strong reputation and is almost full for its intake of students for the 2017/18 school year.”


Year 11 student Usmaan Malik said: “The teachers are passionate about their jobs and in helping students fulfil their potential. The staff are willing to go that extra mile for students.”


Over the last seven years, the academy has also raised £75,000 for charities.


“We allow our children to believe they can be great and then put in all the necessary effort,” said Mark, thanking his team who he said had worked ‘tirelessly’ to ensure the school goes from strength to strength.


“I am totally committed to this school and totally committed to us becoming an outstanding school,” he added. A hat- trick next year perhaps?