Cisco Systems is the global technology giant responsible for partnering with educational institutions worldwide to provide advanced, hands-on learning opportunities and Bredon is very fortunate to have its own on-site Cisco Academy.
The courses we offer prepare our pupils for technical jobs, as well as for further education in engineering, computer science and related fields. Since its launch worldwide, the programme has grown to more than 9,000 Academies in the USA alone and in more than 165 countries worldwide, with the curriculum taught in 16 different languages. More than 900,000 students participate in Academies operating in universities, colleges and schools.
Our own Academy blends dynamic face-to-face teaching with a web-based curriculum, hands-on lab exercises and online assessments.
In 2015, Bredon School was crowned the winner of the Independent Schools Association ‘IT innovation of the Year’ Award for our Cisco Academy.
KS5: Year 12 and 13
In the Sixth Form, we offer the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) Industry Certification. There are no pre-requirements for studying this course. Those students wishing to join our Cisco Academy for the first time in Year 12 will be able start with CCNA outright.
This course is a mixture of theory and practical work. Students will learn all about computer networks. They will learn about switches and routers and the functionality of each component within the network. Students will learn how to program switches and routing using different routing protocols, IP addressing schemes, and various other methods.
Within the practical application they will set up actual working networks within the Cisco Academy. Students will also learn how to use different models to troubleshoot their networks and fix problems that might arise.
The CCNA certification consists of four parts. We teach these as follows:
CCNA Routing and Switching: Part 1: Introduction to Networks
CCNA Routing and Switching: Part 2: Routing and Switching Essentials
Students then sit the CCENT/ISDN 1 external exam. Students have to pass this exam before they will be allowed onto the next part of the certification. The exam has a theory and practical component. Students must gain 70% to pass and are able to sit this exam more than once.
CCNA Routing and Switching: Part 3: Scaling Networks
CCNA Routing and Switching: Part 4: Connecting Networks
KS4: Year 10 and 11
In Years 10 and 11, we offer the Cisco IT Essentials, Industry Certification as well as the CompTia A+ certification after successful completion of the IT Essentials.
These courses are a mixture of theory and practical work. Pupils learn all about computer components, the functions of the different components and which components fit together. They will strip and rebuild old computers in the lab. Pupils will also learn about laptops and laptop components, tablets, all sorts of different printers and how to troubleshoot each. Operating systems, malware and viruses and worms form part of the software component that pupils learn about.
At the end of the course pupils also get the opportunity to build their own private computer (based on a budget they must negotiate with their parents/guardians – one of the aspects students find most exciting!).
Pupils take an internal test at the end of each chapter. After completion of the whole course, pupils sit the Cisco IT Essentials theory exam as well as a practical exam.
The Cisco IT Essentials course takes around four terms for most pupils. After completion of the IT Essentials, pupils will revise and prepare for the CompTia A+ certification, which builds on the IT Essentials course, with the aim to sit the A+ final exam in the Summer Term of Year 11.
These industry related certifications are the minimum requirements that most computer companies such as Dell and PC World require for their bench technicians, therefore opening up great career opportunities for Bredon School pupils.