Darwen Vale High School
Darwen Vale’s original predecessor school, Darwen Higher Grade School, was opened in 1894 and became Darwen Grammar School in 1929.
The school moved to its current location in 1938 and continued until 1972 when, under the reorganisation of the education system across the country, it became Darwen Vale High School.
The present school buildings were opened in 2012 following a £24million revamp under the Building Schools for the Future programme. The site had been closed for two years while large sections of the original structure were demolished and rebuilt. The existing front of the building was retained and cleaned up to keep the character of the old Grammar School. During the rebuilding process the school was relocated to the vacant former site of Darwen Moorland High School.
In December 2013, following an Ofsted inspection that graded the school Inadequate, the Department for Education issued an Academy Order on the school naming Aldridge Education as its preferred sponsor. The conversion was completed and Darwen Vale High School joined our multi-academy trust in December 2014. In 2017 the school was graded Requires Improvement by Ofsted.
The school has strong links to its community, a focus on a providing a safe, secure and caring environment, and a clear vision of looking forward whilst building on the strong traditions of the previous schools.
Since conversion to academy status the school has shown a strong improvement in GCSE results. In 2019 students performed at levels above national averages in many subjects with outstanding performances in English and mathematics. Vale’s Progress 8 score increased by 0.42 - meaning that every student’s performance in the 2018-2019 cohort increased by almost half a grade in each subject compared to 2017-2018 results.
Matthew Little was appointed Principal of the school in June 2017.