Welcome from Principal Maryssa O’Connor

Here at Thornaby Academy we aim to provide an exciting and inspirational environment for young people to learn and succeed. The staff at the Academy work closely as a team to support and guide our young people as they experience a diverse and challenging curriculum which will provide them with every opportunity to achieve their personal best.

Students at Thornaby Academy are at the centre of a community which includes the support of our lead sponsor, Teesside University and co-sponsors, Stockton Sixth Form College, Stockton Riverside College and Stockton Borough Council.

Together the sponsors and the Academy maintain five core values:

  • To seek excellence and the achievement of the highest educational standards for all students.
  • To provide opportunity and raise students’ aspirations.
  • To gain respect and achieve inclusivity for all members of the Academy community.
  • To empower students as learners and teachers as professionals.
  • To work in partnership with local schools and organisations.

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Missed the Open Evening?

Don’t worry. Feel free to pop in for an Academy Tour.

Please try to ring in advance so that we can make the necessary arrangements.

Congratulations, Calum!


Staff at Thornaby Academy are proud to present Calum Thomas with the Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Award on Friday 4th April 2014.

The Duke of Edinburgh award challenges young people aged between 14 and 24 with a personal programme of activities in four sections – Volunteering, Physical, Skills and Expedition. Candidates often find themselves helping people or the community, getting fitter, developing skills and going on an expedition.

Calum’s challenges included navigating his way around Cleveland Hills for 2 days with other students; in turn developing his independence, resilience, communication and group work skills. His physical challenges saw him learning to kayak, his skills challenge asked of him to be engaged in an expedition cookery course and part of his volunteering section saw him work in a local charity shop.

Leader of Outdoor Education, Mr Collins said “We’re extremely proud of Calum. The Duke of Edinburgh award is a true test of endurance as it is set out over the course of a long period; it’s not just something you can do in a day or two. Well done Calum!”
Principal Maryssa O’Connor and Deputy Principal Martin Howard award Calum in the Year 11 awards assembly.

Stockton District Athletics competition

KS3 students will be given the chance to attend trials for the Athletics team after the Easter holidays. The lucky students will represent the Academy at Gateshead Stadium on Tuesday 20th May and compete against the other schools in the Stockton region. This event is the first step to the English Schools trials.

Keep a look out for  names of the students and pictures of the events on the day.

GCSE PE Kayaking


Mr Collins and instructors from Outdoor Ambition took a group of GCSE PE students from Year 11 Kayaking as part of their practical assessment.

Friday 21st March – Students kitted up and learnt the necessary skills for Kayaking on and around the bay of Ellerton Lake.

Friday 28th March – Assessment day, students were put through their paces around Ellerton Lake, completing various skills such as ‘capsizing the boat’ and paddling through currents both in the middle and on the edge of the Lake.

“Students were very successful in both days with Daniel Hobson achieving full marks”.                                                                            Mr Collins




Movie Star Planet – Advice for Parents

Movie Star Planet can be a fun environment for young children to interact with their friends and other players online.  It can also be dangerous if children are not properly educated on how to be safe online.

Thornaby Academy has been alerted to a number of incidents on the Movie Start Planet website involving young children in the surrounding area. Please download and read our advice to parents when allowing children to access the Movie Star Planet Website:

Movie Star Planet – Advice for Parents

DofE Expedition- Training Day 1- Saturday 22nd March 2014

On Saturday 22nd March, The Academy’s Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award group travelled to the North York Moors for their first practical training session in preparation for their Expedition. Over the course of the day the students consolidated all their previous classroom based training on navigation, first aid and emergency procedures.

Student quotes:

  • “Overall, the whole day was an enjoyable experience. If I could, I would do this every weekend! I learnt to count my paces to measure the distance I have travelled. I will never forget the number 76 – which is the number of paces it takes me to travel 100 metres.” - Marleyskye Whitaker
  • “I learnt how to recognise when an area goes up or down hill by looking at the contours in the map. I really enjoyed the exercise and the scenery.  In addition,  I am looking forward to developing my map reading skills in preparation for my Assessed Expedition” - Jake Campbell
Group photo, on top of Roseberry Topping

Group photo, on top of Roseberry Topping

Group photo, during navigation training

Group photo, during navigation training

For further information about any aspects of the Award please contact Mr Collins.

Up and coming band perform at Thornaby Academy

Monday 17th March 2014 saw the band ‘In Hindsight’ perform at Thornaby Academy. Along with the sounds of cheering and clapping, their music echoed throughout the Academy.

In Hindsight are a four-piece band from England, UK, made up of brothers Michael Newcombe (Lead vocals and bass) and Daniel Newcombe (Drums), and friends Jacob Page (Guitar) and Isaac Anderson (Guitar). The band performed their latest singles and some amazing covers. Dangerous, In Hindsight’s latest single can be found here.

This performance was part of an Anti-Drug roadshow. The band spoke about the stigma attached to musicians and that they are often wrongly associated with drug and alcohol abuse. In Hindsight spoke passionately about how this was not the case. Year 8 and 9 student were then educated in regard to Drug and Alcohol abuse, and then had a chance to ask the band questions.

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Coca Cola Enterprise Ltd

The Business GCSE students embarked on a trip to Coca Cola Enterprise Ltd. Wakefield on the 4th of March 2014. Students received a flagship educational programme, with the unique opportunity to develop their knowledge of the world of work, make connections between what is learnt in the classroom and the integral operations of the world’s leading brand. This helped to consolidate student’s knowledge of Business and apply it to a real business context, whilst promoting collaboration with other students and developing positive relationships.

“It was really interesting to learn about the steps Coca Cola have taken to help protect the environment, like the electrical vans for nearby town deliveries. It suggests they’re a company who cares, which is one way of developing brand loyalty.” (Megan Eden).



Business GCSE students visit Coca Cola Enterprise Ltd.


New Gifted, Able and Talented Brand-Launch Event

On Wednesday 29th January Thornaby Academy welcomed visitors from Teesside University and local businesses to create an ‘Apprentice’ style event with gifted, able and talented students. The students attended a branding workshop led by Teesside University staff in the morning and were then put into mixed year group teams to create a brand for the gifted, able and talented programme at Thornaby Academy.
A judging panel made up of a team of experts viewed all ideas and presentations at the end of the academy day alongside parents/carers and academy staff. Students did an excellent job of pitching their ideas and explaining the journey from initial idea to final brand. The judging panel found it incredibly difficult to choose a winner as all ideas had been impressive, however they did chose ‘A* Stars’ as winners. The winning team included Jake Campbell, Emily Barlow, Paige Marshall and Jake Porter. This group have worked with Mr Manning to digitally produce their logo and they won a trophy and a trip to the Cinema.

Parent Information

I am delighted to inform you that catering at the Academy will no longer be run by the external catering company Taylor Shaw and has been brought in-house. The Academy are very excited about the change this can bring to our facilities, with this in mind could you please ensure that if you pay by cheque they are now made payable to ‘Thornaby Academy’.

I would also like to take this chance to remind you that the first day back of term is Tuesday 7th January 2014.

Yours Sincerely
Maryssa O’Connor

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

The Stockton Riverside College Christmas Market

During Global Entrepreneurship Week Yr11 students undertook a Social Enterprise challenge, in collaboration with Stockton Riverside College. Working in groups they developed an idea for a Christmas product/event, which would benefit the community. They devised a business plan, which they presented to the rest of their year. All students voted for the team whose Business Plan had the highest chance of success and was considered the ‘best’ product to sell at a Christmas market.

The winning team, which consisted on Carl Brunskill, Daniel Hobson, Calum Thomas, Jack Dyer and Jordan Hill were awarded a budget of £100, courtesy of Stockton Riverside College to take their idea to market.

The group successfully produced, package, priced and promoted their Christmas Truffles, competing on Wednesday 11th December against other college stalls at the Stockton Riverside College Christmas Market. Well done boys!!


The first purchase of the day made by the Deputy Mayor of Stockton, Councillor Barbara Inman.