Principal: Ormiston Rivers Academy

Media students filming


Applications for this role have now closed.


Ormiston Rivers Academy is based in Burnham-on-Crouch, Essex, 20 miles from the vibrant city of Chelmsford. We are a smaller than average, flourishing and popular 11-18 co-educational academy, set in a semi-rural riverside location. The majority of our students live in local communities in and around Dengie, although some travel considerable distances to attend the academy. Most students are of white British heritage and few students speak English as an additional language.


The proportion of students who are supported with their educational additional needs is higher than average. There is a lower than average number of students eligible for the pupil premium. Students’ ability on entry is historically lower than average. However, we have consistently received national recognition for the value the academy adds to students’ achievements at GCSE. In 2019 GCSE results remained well above average for progress for the third year running and GCSE Maths and English attainment rose to just below national average. Post 16 results are good; the academy is oversubscribed and is currently consulting on increasing Year 7 numbers supported by an additional building programme.


Ormiston Rivers Academy offers a wide range of extra-curricular activities, including sports clubs and arts clubs, to cater for students’ different hobbies and interests. All students are encouraged to get involved and find their passion through the whole school extra-curricular programme. We provide an inspirational education where every young person is ready for life in our global community. Our students have an appetite for success and our staff are committed to unleashing their potential. Parents are supportive and loyal to the academy. The strong alignment amongst stakeholders makes this academy a great place to work and take your career on to the next level.


The academy serves predominantly rural communities, and many of our students come from the surrounding area known as the Dengie Hundred. Dengie Hundred is a peninsula of land to the east of Chelmsford, Essex bounded by the North Sea to the east, the River Crouch to the south and the River Blackwater to the north. Best known as a yachting centre, hosting the internationally famous ‘Burnham Week’, it also boasts many other attractions – from fossil-laden cliffs to a working steam railway museum. Much of the area is unchanged since its listing in the Domesday Book. For more information on this beautiful area, please visit: or


Our strong code of values guides our work and creates a secure learning environment where all students can thrive and succeed. We are committed to ensuring every student reaches their full potential: being aspirational and committed to academic excellence. Since joining Ormiston Academies Trust (OAT) in September 2011 the academy has been on an incredible journey. It was recognised by Ofsted in 2016 as ‘Good’, maintaining its position as one of the top education providers in the area that the continuing improvements have transformed the ethos of the school.


We are driving towards ‘Outstanding’ and consider that we are on track to achieve this. This outcome will be a testament to the hard work and belief of our staff body, the commitment and partnership of our families, the unfailing support from our sponsor, Ormiston Academies Trust, the challenge and constant encouragement of the Governing Body and, most importantly, our wonderful student voice who are the epitome of excellence and endeavour.


Our vision


Ormiston Rivers Academy will transform education for the next decade and beyond for the entire community of the Dengie. We are committed to good relationships with students, parents, carers and others. Students will have greater aspirations and expectations. We will give them high levels of literacy and numeracy, and a mastery of technology. We aspire to be one of the top secondary schools in Essex with an Ofsted ‘Outstanding’ ranking for education provision and a reputation for producing well rounded individuals that make a positive contribution to society.


Our strong code of values guides our work and creates a secure learning environment where all students can thrive and succeed. We want students to have the best possible education to help them achieve their personal goals and to develop a lifelong enthusiasm for learning. We concentrate on developing the individual and encourage an outlook on life which reflects the best in our community; nurturing confident, active, aspirational and socially responsible young people.


We strive to equip our students with the ability to take a world view and meet the demands of the 21st Century through a diverse curriculum, personalised to an individual student’s needs. We teach students to be confident, resourceful, resilient, and responsible; able to articulate ideas, to ask questions and listen to others; to constantly re-focus beliefs and values; and to know how to transfer these abilities into real life situations. We expect students to arrive at the academy with a positive attitude to learning. We believe in good behaviour and discipline, and encourage friendly, respectful teacher-student relationships that help make learning fun and enjoyable.


Our students say…


"We would like to welcome you to Ormiston Rivers Academy. Throughout our journey from Year 7 to Year 13 at the academy, we have witnessed our teachers constantly strive to allow every individual to achieve their very best through their strong relationships with students and how they support them in every lesson. We can truly say that we have valued the many opportunities the staff have given us to allow us to grow and develop and become the best that we can be.


"Our academy is small enough to ensure that every student is known personally by members of the staff; this helps to inspire an active community that welcomes people from all different backgrounds to work together and create new experiences for one another. Student leadership opportunities are strongly encouraged and are important to both the students and the teachers. As students, we are given a platform to play an active part in decisions, giving ideas and opinions to make the academy better for the benefit of our whole community. We have a variety of roles, including Student Leadership Team, Well-Being Ambassadors and Sports Leaders. As a result, we feel we empowered to make valuable contributions to events and changes at the academy."


ORA in the news…(February 2021)


“The academy has helped me to follow my dreams. I enjoy the fact that Ormiston Rivers Academy actually helps us to achieve our dreams.”

- Student, Ormiston Rivers Academy