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Educational Visits

At St Thomas Aquinas Catholic School we are proud to offer a variety of exciting extra-curricular activities. All of our year groups have the opportunity to attend a residential visit as well as many day visits. Our overseas programme includes visits to Paris, Belgium, Lourdes and even as far away as Tanzania. We have one of the largest Duke of Edinburgh programmes in the West Midlands and offer from Bronze to Gold level. Here we have listed our main visits that occur annually so you can have a flavour of what we offer. This list is not exhaustive and is subject to change.



Year 7 Trips

Trip
Faculty
Trip Description
Cost *
BCP Sports Days
Physical Education  
The BCP runs a variety of sporting competitions across the school year, which St Thomas Aquinas have a proud tradition of competing in, with a great deal of success over the years! Events are held amongst the cluster of Catholic Schools across the city and in recent years this has included the annual swimming gala, football, softball, rounders and golf competitions.  The year of events traditionally culminates in the BCP Multi-Event Sports Day, where pupils compete over the day in basketball, athletics, football, indoor rowing, volleyball and ultimate frisbee, gaining points for overall standings on the day. St Thomas Aquinas won the overall bronze medal for last year's girls event and gold for the boys!  
 
Dudley Zoo
Nurture Group  
To start the new term, the Nurture students attended a fun filled day at Dudley Zoo and Castle.  During the day the group took part in two horrible histories workshop, where they got to discover what life was like for those living in a Medieval castle. The idea of rising at 5am to start their daily chores was not met with enthusiasm. The second workshop was themed on Crime and Punishment in the Medieval era.  Many found themselves receiving harsh punishments for crimes such as not cooking the food to a high enough standard and catching dinner on the Lord’s land without permission. Following on from the History workshops, the pupils moved to the Geography element of the day.  A discussion on habitats led to an interactive session where they got to handle some of the animas they had just studied.  This was an invaluable opportunity for the group to get up close and personal with animals and insects, they would not normally come into contact with. The remainder of the day was spent exploring the zoo and its’ animals, with Claude, the Orangutan, starring in the many selfies taken that day.  
 
Guernsey
 
Every summer we take 73 Year 7's and 10 older students to the island of Guernsey for a 10 day camping trip at the end of the summer term. This trip has been running now for over 35 years. Students that have been on the visit have very fond memories and talk about it often.  A full programme of activities is planned, with each of these included in the price of the trip. We will visit places of interest on Guernsey, have a day trip and barbeque on the neighbouring island of Herm, a path walk along the South Coast of Guernsey and visit a number of beautiful beaches. Each student will have holiday membership of the Beau Sejour Leisure Centre, where they can swim, play sports hall games and tennis. There will also be a ‘last night’ disco and awards  
399  
Mass
Religious Education  
The school visits 7 local Parishes during the year and provide the music and does the readings for a weekend Mass, students who went to the feeder schools connected to those parishes are invited to take part via a letter home to parents.  
 
SWAN Language Day
Modern Foreign Languages  
Role-play competition. We take 2 students from Y7 French and 2 from Y8 French. We sometimes also take 2 from Y9 German. The students prepare a short role-play on a set topic and perform against students from other schools. Our Y7 students won last year. The competition takes place in the Summer Term.  
 
Visiting Primary Schools
 
Our Key Stage 3 students get the opportunities to visit our feeder primary schools to tell the year 5 & 6 students what being a student is like at Tommies.  
 


Year 8 Trips

Trip
Faculty
Trip Description
Cost *
Alton Castle
Religious Education  
Up to 75 Year 8 students have the opportunity to go to Alton Castle, Staffordshire, on a 2 night, activity based retreat. This retreat is based on students looking at who they are as a child of God.
117  
BCP Sports Days
Physical Education  
The BCP runs a variety of sporting competitions across the school year, which St Thomas Aquinas have a proud tradition of competing in, with a great deal of success over the years! Events are held amongst the cluster of Catholic Schools across the city and in recent years this has included the annual swimming gala, football, softball, rounders and golf competitions.  The year of events traditionally culminates in the BCP Multi-Event Sports Day, where pupils compete over the day in basketball, athletics, football, indoor rowing, volleyball and ultimate frisbee, gaining points for overall standings on the day. St Thomas Aquinas won the overall bronze medal for last year's girls event and gold for the boys!
 
Cadbury World
Geography  
The purpose of this visit is to build on students understanding of the chocolate industry studied as part of the Spring term Globalisation unit, and the importance of issues such as Fairtrade. Students experience a lesson and partake in activities to deepen their understanding, as well as being taken on a tour of the factory to sample the chocolate J!
 
London
History  
The History visits to London in recent years have been for year 8 to enthuse and prepare them for GCSE History. We have visited Westminster to learn about the trial and execution of Charles I; the Tower of London to find out more about its role in WW1, the Imprerial War Museum, learning about the Holocaust, WW2 and Britain's role in WW1. The trips are taken in the summer term and are always popular with students. They get to experience the hustle and bustle of the 'Big Smoke' by riding the Tube, and taking in the world famous sights and sounds of our capital city.
 
Mass
Religious Education  
The school visits 7 local Parishes during the year and provide the music and does the readings for a weekend Mass, students who went to the feeder schools connected to those parishes are invited to take part via a letter home to parents.
 
Ski Trip
Physical Education  
This bi-annual trip run for KS4 and KS5. No previous skiing experience required. A great opportunity to spend 6 days having skiing lessons in the natural alpine countryside, with a mixture of cultural activities in the evenings. A great chance to learn how to ski in a safe and controlled environment. A great trip with hoodies, evening activities, food and accommodation all included.
999  
SWAN Language Day
Modern Foreign Languages  
We work together with other local schools to create a wonderful language-filled day for 15 gifted linguists from Year 8. The students travel to Hillcrest School where they watch a play in French performed by the Onatti Theatre Company. It is always very entertaining and the students find that they can understand more than they thought they would. They each then have the chance to sample two new languages such as Chinese, Russian, Italian, German or Latin. The workshops last for approximately 45 minutes. We finish with a quiz before students return to their own schools, full of enthusiasm for language learning!
 
SWAN Language Day
Modern Foreign Languages  
Role-play competition. We take 2 students from Y7 French and 2 from Y8 French. We sometimes also take 2 from Y9 German. The students prepare a short role-play on a set topic and perform against students from other schools. Our Y7 students won last year. The competition takes place in the Summer Term.
 
Visiting Primary Schools
 
Our Key Stage 3 students get the opportunities to visit our feeder primary schools to tell the year 5 & 6 students what being a student is like at Tommies.
 
Young Persons Question Time, Tally Ho
Citizenship  
Each year, Heads of Houses select one student from Year 8 to visit the Tally Ho where they engage in a Young Person’s Question Time with West Midlands Police. Students work with other young people from across Birmingham to discuss with local police officers important issues affecting the city, like knife crime, social media, alcohol use and anti-social behavior. After lunch, students then ask questions to a senior panel of police officers about their work and find out more about how they protect local citizens. This is a good opportunity for young people to have their voices heard on matters which affect them. 
 


Year 9 Trips

Trip
Faculty
Trip Description
Cost *
Arete
Physical Education  
This is a long standing residential trip which has moved from the well renowned Ogwen Cottage (which closed in 2013), many ex-students will reminisce about this trip with fond memories with tails of how it changed their lives for the better. We take Year 9 students for a 5 day residential to Snowdonia to part take in a range of outdoor education experiences. They complete activities which challenge and take them outside of their comfort zones, tailor made to the group, giving them the skills to persevere and uncover talents they did not know they have. It builds on their team building and leadership skills and introduces them to activities that they will rarely be able to experience in everyday life in a setting far removed from the city life we are used to. This is a fantastic trip which I highly recommend everyone apply to come on.
325  
BCP Sports Days
Physical Education  
The BCP runs a variety of sporting competitions across the school year, which St Thomas Aquinas have a proud tradition of competing in, with a great deal of success over the years! Events are held amongst the cluster of Catholic Schools across the city and in recent years this has included the annual swimming gala, football, softball, rounders and golf competitions.  The year of events traditionally culminates in the BCP Multi-Event Sports Day, where pupils compete over the day in basketball, athletics, football, indoor rowing, volleyball and ultimate frisbee, gaining points for overall standings on the day. St Thomas Aquinas won the overall bronze medal for last year's girls event and gold for the boys!
 
Bronze DofE
 
Students in Year 9 have the opportunity to begin the Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award when they reach the age of 14. The Award is offered as an extra-curricular activity and is a good opportunity for students to develop their personal skills, face new challenges and have fun, whilst also gaining an extra qualification, which will make them stand out when applying for college, university and job applications. The award takes 6 months to complete and is divided into four sections: volunteering; physical; skill and expedition. Students must complete the volunteering, physical and skill aspects for 3 months and then choose one of these to carry on for a further 3 months. The aim of the expedition is to inspire students to develop initiative and a sense of adventure by planning, training for and completing a 2 day 1 night hike. Students meet regularly to work on teambuilding, learning camp-craft skills, navigation, route planning and emergency and first aid procedures. Students complete a practice expedition in Earlswood and then their final expedition in the Clent Hills for their qualifying expedition.
 
Forward Thinking, Birmingham Uni
 
Years 8–11 Forward Thinking Forward Thinking is a progressive programme we run with groups of local schools. Each year the schools involved select five Year 8 students to take part in the programme.  They are all Gifted and Talented students who meet Widening Participation criteria.  The students take part in a programme of activity through to Year 11 supported by a range of information and advice materials.  
 
Mass
Religious Education  
The school visits 7 local Parishes during the year and provide the music and does the readings for a weekend Mass, students who went to the feeder schools connected to those parishes are invited to take part via a letter home to parents.
 
Mosaic Mentoring, KPMG
 
This year we signed up to a programme called Mosaic Mentoring. Founded by HRH The Prince of Wales in 2007, Mosaic's mentoring programme creates opportunities for students to work with mentors from outside of school to boost their confidence, self-efficacy and long term employability. This year, 30 of our year 9 students have taken part in montly mentoring sessions led by a group of mentors from different work places. They have worked on group activities to developing their skills in team building, communication and confidence. The group also had the opportunity to visit KPMG to get a first-hand experience of a place of work.
 
Ski Trip
Physical Education  
This bi-annual trip run for KS4 and KS5. No previous skiing experience required. A great opportunity to spend 6 days having skiing lessons in the natural alpine countryside, with a mixture of cultural activities in the evenings. A great chance to learn how to ski in a safe and controlled environment. A great trip with hoodies, evening activities, food and accommodation all included.
999  
SWAN Language Day
Modern Foreign Languages  
Role-play competition. We take 2 students from Y7 French and 2 from Y8 French. We sometimes also take 2 from Y9 German. The students prepare a short role-play on a set topic and perform against students from other schools. Our Y7 students won last year. The competition takes place in the Summer Term.
 
SWAN Language Quiz
 
We take 2 teams of 5 and we compete against teams from about 10 other schools such as Bartley Green, Lordswood Boys, Lordswood Girls, Turves Green Boys, Turves Green Girls, Selly Park Girls, Hillcrest, Bournville, Colmers, Shenley, Baalam Wood, Four Dwellings, KE Five Ways. The quiz is usually in the Autumn Term and just takes an afternoon.
 


Year 10 Trips

Trip
Faculty
Trip Description
Cost *
BCP Sports Days
Physical Education  
The BCP runs a variety of sporting competitions across the school year, which St Thomas Aquinas have a proud tradition of competing in, with a great deal of success over the years! Events are held amongst the cluster of Catholic Schools across the city and in recent years this has included the annual swimming gala, football, softball, rounders and golf competitions.  The year of events traditionally culminates in the BCP Multi-Event Sports Day, where pupils compete over the day in basketball, athletics, football, indoor rowing, volleyball and ultimate frisbee, gaining points for overall standings on the day. St Thomas Aquinas won the overall bronze medal for last year's girls event and gold for the boys!
 
Belgium
History  
The Battlefields trip to Belgium and France is for GCSE and A-Level students studying History. Students learn about the impact of war in the Flanders region and gain an understanding of the importance of remembrance. The trip has been running for several years now and remains a very popular trip! Many students come on the trip year after year!
200  
Birmingham City Centre
Geography  
Students explore Birmingham city centre and a more rural environment as part of their Paper 3 skills activity where they have to carry out an investigation. Students investigate an issue in the city such as tourism/ problems/ pollution/opportunities and then collect primary data on this. They then complete a report back in the classroom. The focus on Birmingham also prepares them for a major case study on Birmingham which they study as part of the Urban Issues topic.
 
Bletchley Park STEM visit
ICT  
This visit will explore encryption techniques that have been used throughout history. Students will tackle complex processes and be introduced to mathematical techniques, such as modular arithmetic and binary addition, in order to solve a codebreaking challenge. They will also have the unique opportunity to see a genuine Enigma machine and will be able to describe its design and role in WW2.
 
Cinema Visit
Media Studies  
We have over the years worked with 'IntoFilm' an organisation that provides free tickets for K3-K5 students in order to support their curriculum studies using film. In particular we have visited several cinemas (MAC, Rubery, Odeon) to expand the GCSE students' knowledge of Action-Adventure films; one of the main components of their terminal exam in Y11. As well as this we visit the Electric Cinema with Y12 each year to view a film and have 'exclusive' use of the cinema. The film is one of the case studies that students must include in their AS exam. Additionally, the visit is crucial for the students' understanding of institutional practice-especially distribution and exhibition, which is supported by a pre-film discussion/Q&A with the cinema manager.
 
Mass
Religious Education  
The school visits 7 local Parishes during the year and provide the music and does the readings for a weekend Mass, students who went to the feeder schools connected to those parishes are invited to take part via a letter home to parents.
 
Paris
Modern Foreign Languages  
Each year at the start of the Easter holidays ,we take a group of approximately 45 students from Year 10 and 11 to Paris for 4 days. We travel by coach and stay at the beautiful Château de Grande Romaine, a PGL centre to the East of Paris. We spend two days sightseeing in Paris, including going to the top of the Eiffel Tower (for those who are brave enough!), a boat trip on the River Seine and a morning in a picturesque market town, Brie Comte Robert, where students complete a town trail and practise their French. For some, the highlight of the trip is our day at Disneyland, where students enjoy the rides, the parades and meeting the Disney characters.
340  
Ski Trip
Physical Education  
This bi-annual trip run for KS4 and KS5. No previous skiing experience required. A great opportunity to spend 6 days having skiing lessons in the natural alpine countryside, with a mixture of cultural activities in the evenings. A great chance to learn how to ski in a safe and controlled environment. A great trip with hoodies, evening activities, food and accommodation all included.
999  
Soli House
Religious Education  
Up to 35 year 10 students have the opportunity  to go to Soli House retreat centre, now based in Alton, Staffordshire, for a 3 night retreat. Where they look at their relationships with family and friends and their faith and relationship with God in more depth
110  
World Challenge
Various  
In 2008 we began our World Challenge expeditions. Students from Years 10-12 sign up to take on this once in a lifetime experience. Students get two years to pland and fundraise for their trip. Our expeditions have included: Southern Mexico, Guatemala and Belieze in 2008, Zambia and Botswana in 2010, Thailand and Laos in 2012, Venezuela in 2014 and Southern Tanzania in 2016. Each trip has different phases such as acclimatisation, treks, projects and rest and relaxation. Projects included conservation and community work, Rest and relaxation includes white water rafting, scuba diving and safari's. This is an amazing opportunity for our students and looks great on university and job application forms.
3000  


Year 11 Trips

Trip
Faculty
Trip Description
Cost *
BCP Sports Days
Physical Education  
The BCP runs a variety of sporting competitions across the school year, which St Thomas Aquinas have a proud tradition of competing in, with a great deal of success over the years! Events are held amongst the cluster of Catholic Schools across the city and in recent years this has included the annual swimming gala, football, softball, rounders and golf competitions.  The year of events traditionally culminates in the BCP Multi-Event Sports Day, where pupils compete over the day in basketball, athletics, football, indoor rowing, volleyball and ultimate frisbee, gaining points for overall standings on the day. St Thomas Aquinas won the overall bronze medal for last year's girls event and gold for the boys!
 
Belgium
History  
The Battlefields trip to Belgium and France is for GCSE and A-Level students studying History. Students learn about the impact of war in the Flanders region and gain an understanding of the importance of remembrance. The trip has been running for several years now and remains a very popular trip! Many students come on the trip year after year!
200  
Cinema Visit
Media Studies  
We have over the years worked with 'IntoFilm' an organisation that provides free tickets for K3-K5 students in order to support their curriculum studies using film. In particular we have visited several cinemas (MAC, Rubery, Odeon) to expand the GCSE students' knowledge of Action-Adventure films; one of the main components of their terminal exam in Y11. As well as this we visit the Electric Cinema with Y12 each year to view a film and have 'exclusive' use of the cinema. The film is one of the case studies that students must include in their AS exam. Additionally, the visit is crucial for the students' understanding of institutional practice-especially distribution and exhibition, which is supported by a pre-film discussion/Q&A with the cinema manager.
 
Mass
Religious Education  
The school visits 7 local Parishes during the year and provide the music and does the readings for a weekend Mass, students who went to the feeder schools connected to those parishes are invited to take part via a letter home to parents.
 
Paris
Modern Foreign Languages  
Each year at the start of the Easter holidays ,we take a group of approximately 45 students from Year 10 and 11 to Paris for 4 days. We travel by coach and stay at the beautiful Château de Grande Romaine, a PGL centre to the East of Paris. We spend two days sightseeing in Paris, including going to the top of the Eiffel Tower (for those who are brave enough!), a boat trip on the River Seine and a morning in a picturesque market town, Brie Comte Robert, where students complete a town trail and practise their French. For some, the highlight of the trip is our day at Disneyland, where students enjoy the rides, the parades and meeting the Disney characters.
340  
Silver DofE
 
Students in Year 10 have the opportunity to begin the Silver Duke of Edinburgh Award when they reach the age of 15. The Award is offered as an extra-curricular activity and is a good opportunity for students to develop their personal skills, meet new people, discover their potential, learn new skills and face new challenges. Above all, successful participants will gain an extra qualification which will help them stand out when applying for college, university and job applications. The award takes 12 months to complete for direct entrants and 6 months for those who have achieved their Bronze award. In order to complete the award, students must undertake volunteering, participate in a physical activity, learn a new skill and complete a three day, two night expedition.
 
Ski Trip
Physical Education  
This bi-annual trip run for KS4 and KS5. No previous skiing experience required. A great opportunity to spend 6 days having skiing lessons in the natural alpine countryside, with a mixture of cultural activities in the evenings. A great chance to learn how to ski in a safe and controlled environment. A great trip with hoodies, evening activities, food and accommodation all included.
999  
Theatre Visits
Performing Arts  
Students visit a number of different theatres to watch a variety of performances. This helps students studying perfoming arts.
 
World Challenge
Various  
In 2008 we began our World Challenge expeditions. Students from Years 10-12 sign up to take on this once in a lifetime experience. Students get two years to pland and fundraise for their trip. Our expeditions have included: Southern Mexico, Guatemala and Belieze in 2008, Zambia and Botswana in 2010, Thailand and Laos in 2012, Venezuela in 2014 and Southern Tanzania in 2016. Each trip has different phases such as acclimatisation, treks, projects and rest and relaxation. Projects included conservation and community work, Rest and relaxation includes white water rafting, scuba diving and safari's. This is an amazing opportunity for our students and looks great on university and job application forms.
3000  


Year 12 Trips

Trip
Faculty
Trip Description
Cost *
Belgium
History  
The Battlefields trip to Belgium and France is for GCSE and A-Level students studying History. Students learn about the impact of war in the Flanders region and gain an understanding of the importance of remembrance. The trip has been running for several years now and remains a very popular trip! Many students come on the trip year after year!
200  
Berlin
History  
The Sixth Form trip to Berlin is in it's second year. The trip is  a History one, however it is open to all students in the Sixth Form. Students learn about Nazi Germany and the Cold War, as well as finding out about European Politics in their visit to the Reichstag. Students also visit the TV Tower, the 1936 Olympic Stadium, sample the local cuisine of Bratwurst and Currywurst and experience a little of Berlin at night. They also see the Brandenburg Gate and experience riding around on the U-Bahn. The Berlin trip is a very special one in that for most, it is the last residential trip taken by our students.
450  
Big Bang Event
Science  
A group of 30 students have gone to a university to take part in group activities that enhance team work, problem solving and to enthuse students in science. Some of the activities that they have taken part in include: checking blood sugar levels, extracting DNA, workshop on lenses and workshop on crime scene investigations.
 
Cinema Visit
Media Studies  
We have over the years worked with 'IntoFilm' an organisation that provides free tickets for K3-K5 students in order to support their curriculum studies using film. In particular we have visited several cinemas (MAC, Rubery, Odeon) to expand the GCSE students' knowledge of Action-Adventure films; one of the main components of their terminal exam in Y11. As well as this we visit the Electric Cinema with Y12 each year to view a film and have 'exclusive' use of the cinema. The film is one of the case studies that students must include in their AS exam. Additionally, the visit is crucial for the students' understanding of institutional practice-especially distribution and exhibition, which is supported by a pre-film discussion/Q&A with the cinema manager.
 
Clothes Show
Textiles  
Each year in December year 12 and 13 AS and A2 Textiles students visit the Clothes Show Live at the NEC. The day allows our students  to gain a valuable insight into the Fashion and Textile Industry. There are also excellent opportunities to explore and find out about Higher Education options; the University stands offer invaluable information and a first-hand look at the work and courses their institution offers. They can also gather research in order to develop their own creative ideas. The visit is very effective; it directly influences the students and impacts on their design ideas. The Clothes Show prides itself on its apparent focus on education and how they provide an inspirational and informative day out.
 
CPR training
Health & Social Care  
 
Day centre
Health & Social Care  
A day centre for adults who have dementia or physical and learning disabilities. Learners were allocated to set rooms which were running different activities and were able to participate alongside service users and staff in a variety of tasks from cooking to art. This visit links directly to the Communication unit and building positive relationships.
 
Food Bank
Health & Social Care  
Our local food bank which enabled students to fully understand how the service is run and reasons why people access the service. This visit links directly to the Equality & Diversity Unit and the Safeguarding Unit, showing learners how members of society are
 
Homeless Shelter
Health & Social Care  
Homeless drop in centre.  Learners will have the opportunity to gain valuable work experience by volunteering at the breakfast and lunch service. This visit links directly to all the units we have been studying Communication, Equality & Diversity, Health & Safety and Safeguarding. It will also provide the building blocks to our next topics of study Public Health and Health Promotion
 
Krakow
History  
The Sixth Form trip to Krakow is relatively new to our trip calendar. The trip is a History one, however it is open to all students in the Sixth Form. Students learn about the Holocaust and the Nazi Occupation of Poland, and visit Auschwitz extermination camp. The Krakow trip is a very special one in that for most, it is the last residential trip taken by our students. 
450  
Mass
Religious Education  
The school visits 7 local Parishes during the year and provide the music and does the readings for a weekend Mass, students who went to the feeder schools connected to those parishes are invited to take part via a letter home to parents.
 
Preston Montford
Geography  
This is a compulsory element of AS AQA A level Geography (specifically relating to Geog 1 and Geog 2 exam papers-which make up 100% of AS year assessment). Students undertake river studies, exploring how the long and cross profile of a river change as you move downstream. They understand how to undertake an effective fieldwork investigation in Geography coming up with key questions, data collection methods, risk assessments, data presentation, analysis and evaluation. This is run every year in October.
 
Science Conferences Birmingham Town Hall
Science  
Each year, the Science Faculty takes students in Year 11 and Sixth Form to Birmingham Town Hall to experience a series of fascinating presentations and lectures delivered by some of the UK's leading scientists. In the past students have been lucky enough to listen first hand to Professors Brian Cox, Robert Winston and Alice Roberts, among many others. Topics are wide-ranging across a variety of scientific disciplines and it is always fascinating to hear from the leaders of the fields explaining their research first hand. The presentations are always relevant to the GCSE and A level specifications. There is also an exam technique workshop delivered by a senior examiner to share those helpful and hints and tips that can be so vital in leading to exam success."
 
Ski Trip
Physical Education  
This bi-annual trip run for KS4 and KS5. No previous skiing experience required. A great opportunity to spend 6 days having skiing lessons in the natural alpine countryside, with a mixture of cultural activities in the evenings. A great chance to learn how to ski in a safe and controlled environment. A great trip with hoodies, evening activities, food and accommodation all included.
999  
Skills Shows, NEC
Technology  
 
Theatre Visits
Performing Arts  
Students visit a number of different theatres to watch a variety of performances. This helps students studying perfoming arts.
 
World Challenge
Various  
In 2008 we began our World Challenge expeditions. Students from Years 10-12 sign up to take on this once in a lifetime experience. Students get two years to pland and fundraise for their trip. Our expeditions have included: Southern Mexico, Guatemala and Belieze in 2008, Zambia and Botswana in 2010, Thailand and Laos in 2012, Venezuela in 2014 and Southern Tanzania in 2016. Each trip has different phases such as acclimatisation, treks, projects and rest and relaxation. Projects included conservation and community work, Rest and relaxation includes white water rafting, scuba diving and safari's. This is an amazing opportunity for our students and looks great on university and job application forms.
3000  


Year 13 Trips

Trip
Faculty
Trip Description
Cost *
Belgium
History  
The Battlefields trip to Belgium and France is for GCSE and A-Level students studying History. Students learn about the impact of war in the Flanders region and gain an understanding of the importance of remembrance. The trip has been running for several years now and remains a very popular trip! Many students come on the trip year after year!
200  
Big Bang Event
Science  
A group of 30 students have gone to a university to take part in group activities that enhance team work, problem solving and to enthuse students in science. Some of the activities that they have taken part in include: checking blood sugar levels, extracting DNA, workshop on lenses and workshop on crime scene investigations.
 
Cadburys
ICT  
Students in Year 13 ICT have just completed the last of their visits to Cadbury/Mondelez where they have worked closely with staff who have delivered sessions based on the syllabus and how that plays out in the real world of an international brand such as Cadbury Mondelez. Over the two month period, students visited the Cadbury/Mondelez site and covered topics that included: Large Scale ICT systems, strategy / policy / legislation, ICT systems / information needs, Project Management, Internal / external resources. This initiative was setup with the support of one of our Parents who works at the Bournville site last year and we have been lucky to see that partnership carry on to with this year’s cohort. A huge thank you to David, Garry and Emily for all their support in delivering and organising the sessions and also to all the other staff who gave up their time to help deliver the content, I’ve no doubt this will go a long way to embed the theory taught in lesson by Mrs McDougall and shore up any gaps that may have existed in their learning.
 
Cinema Visit
Media Studies  
We have over the years worked with 'IntoFilm' an organisation that provides free tickets for K3-K5 students in order to support their curriculum studies using film. In particular we have visited several cinemas (MAC, Rubery, Odeon) to expand the GCSE students' knowledge of Action-Adventure films; one of the main components of their terminal exam in Y11. As well as this we visit the Electric Cinema with Y12 each year to view a film and have 'exclusive' use of the cinema. The film is one of the case studies that students must include in their AS exam. Additionally, the visit is crucial for the students' understanding of institutional practice-especially distribution and exhibition, which is supported by a pre-film discussion/Q&A with the cinema manager.
 
Day centre
Health & Social Care  
A day centre for adults who have dementia or physical and learning disabilities. Learners were allocated to set rooms which were running different activities and were able to participate alongside service users and staff in a variety of tasks from cooking to art. This visit links directly to the Communication unit and building positive relationships.
 
Food Bank
Health & Social Care  
Our local food bank which enabled students to fully understand how the service is run and reasons why people access the service. This visit links directly to the Equality & Diversity Unit and the Safeguarding Unit, showing learners how members of society are
 
Gold DofE
 
The Duke of Edinburgh Award at Tommies began with enrolment in 2006, with a cohort of 13 6th Form students. The two groups undertook their practice expedition in the very challenging Dark Peaks and were successful enough to be put forward for their Qualification in the Brecon Beacons. During their time on expedition the weather became inclement and both groups on the 3rd day found challenging weather in the form of thick fog with one group ending up camping up on the hills overnight. The very 1st person to complete the whole of the Gold Award was Naomi Austin who received her Award at St James’ Palace in the presence of the Duke of Edinburgh himself. From that initial cohort of 13 we have had 4 successful finish the Award as a whole and just this year (2016) some eight years after their expedition, Mr O’Sullivan finally completed all his sections and will be going to the Palace also this year to pick up his well-earned Award. To date, we have had 12 students complete their Gold Award and are hoping to put forward another 10 students to head off to the Palace. Last year we enrolled another 28 students – twice as big as any cohort before, with the expectation that we will have 20 pick up their Award next year. All these achievements would not be so successful without all the staff, who have given up their time and effort, from Bronze through to Gold – I thank you all.
 
Homeless Shelter
Health & Social Care  
Homeless drop in centre.  Learners will have the opportunity to gain valuable work experience by volunteering at the breakfast and lunch service. This visit links directly to all the units we have been studying Communication, Equality & Diversity, Health & Safety and Safeguarding. It will also provide the building blocks to our next topics of study Public Health and Health Promotion
 
Lourdes
Religious Education  
Every year, the Sixth Form have the opportunity to join the Birmingham Diocesan annual pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes in Southern France. Millions of pilgrims visit Lourdes each year since the apparitions in 1858 where Mary appeared to St Bernadette 18 times. Lourdes has since become renowned as a place of healing and the Catholic Church has recognised a total of 69 miracles having taken place there. Students travel to Lourdes during the May half-term, where they volunteer serving sick and elderly pilgrims. Students have the opportunity to live out their faith in a very direct way and work in a privileged position supporting and caring for those who are less fortunate than themselves. Students often find working with the pilgrims a humbling and rewarding experience. Throughout the week there are also many opportunities to visit other places of interest and meet young people from across the Diocese.
 
Mass
Religious Education  
The school visits 7 local Parishes during the year and provide the music and does the readings for a weekend Mass, students who went to the feeder schools connected to those parishes are invited to take part via a letter home to parents.
 
Science Conferences Birmingham Town Hall
Science  
Each year, the Science Faculty takes students in Year 11 and Sixth Form to Birmingham Town Hall to experience a series of fascinating presentations and lectures delivered by some of the UK's leading scientists. In the past students have been lucky enough to listen first hand to Professors Brian Cox, Robert Winston and Alice Roberts, among many others. Topics are wide-ranging across a variety of scientific disciplines and it is always fascinating to hear from the leaders of the fields explaining their research first hand. The presentations are always relevant to the GCSE and A level specifications. There is also an exam technique workshop delivered by a senior examiner to share those helpful and hints and tips that can be so vital in leading to exam success."
 
Ski Trip
Physical Education  
This bi-annual trip run for KS4 and KS5. No previous skiing experience required. A great opportunity to spend 6 days having skiing lessons in the natural alpine countryside, with a mixture of cultural activities in the evenings. A great chance to learn how to ski in a safe and controlled environment. A great trip with hoodies, evening activities, food and accommodation all included.
999  
Skills Shows, NEC
Various  
The Skills Show is the UK’s leading experiential skills and careers event for young people. It takes place from 19 to 21 November. The event provides students with hands-on experiences that inspire them about the world of work.  A wide range of leading employers and training organisations, including Toyota, Jaguar Landrover, BAE Systems, High Speed Two, IBM and NHS Careers, as well as colleges, training providers and careers advisers, will be on site for students to talk to. The show features five skill sectors: Engineering and Technology, Media and Creative, IT and Enterprise, Hospitality and Lifestyle, Construction and Infrastructure.
 
Theatre Visits
Performing Arts  
Students visit a number of different theatres to watch a variety of performances. This helps students studying perfoming arts.
 

* Some visits may incur a charge for transport and / or entrance fees. Information will be provided to you when the visit is launched.