From the Headteacher
I am very grateful to all parents/carers for the wonderful support throughout the pandemic. The students have also been very sensible and understanding, especially over the past week and with the news that we will retain face coverings for a while longer.
We have had record rates of staff absence over the past two weeks with many classes requiring supply teachers. Lots of lessons have been covered with our own staff and I am grateful to them for taking on the additional workload. Next week, we should return to a more manageable level of absence as some colleagues come back to school.
I do hope that you have a good weekend and week ahead.
- All students in Years 11 and 13 need to be available to sit an examination right up to Wednesday 29 June.
- The 29 June is a contingency day and will be used if any examination must be rescheduled.
- Year 11 and 13 students can therefore plan their break or book holidays from Thursday 30 June 2022.
Sixth Form – Apply
- The deadline for applications is today, Friday 28 January.
- Please note that applications after the closing date are received but considered ‘late’, which means that it is not possible for us to always guarantee course places.
- Go here to read the Course Guide then apply.
Many young people use YouTube as their go-to video viewer. It averages a billion views per day just from smartphones – 25% of all internet usage.
When something is uploaded from YouTube – age-appropriate or not – it can reach a staggering number of people in almost no time at all. For example, music videos regularly reach almost a million views a minute.
It is easy to understand why many schools as well as parents/carers are concerned about harmful clips featuring profanity, sex and/or violence as these are equally as likely to rapidly go viral. Learn more about the potential risks of YouTube.
If you have a concern about the safety or welfare of your or another child, please email the safeguarding team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
At this point, we are still one of a few schools that have never sent whole year groups, or even whole classes, home to self-isolate.
We are currently experiencing high COVID-19 rates amongst the local and school community, but the positive news is that our young people are not becoming seriously unwell and most seem to have no ill effects at all.
We review the COVID-19 data on a weekly (and often daily) basis. Hopefully, we can move to reducing the remaining restrictions soon. However, whilst rates are high, we would be grateful for your continued support and in particular:
- ensuring that your son/daughter/ward has a clean face covering with them each day – they will be worn in class and in communal areas
- ensuring that they also carry a personal supply of sanitiser and use it frequently
- encouraging them to continue with lateral flow testing twice a week.
At school, we continue to make sure that:
- additional cleaning regimes remain in place;
- extra supplies of sanitiser being in place around the school; and
- our students are aware of the high rates of transmission.
The NHS team will be in school in early March to administer first or second vaccinations for students aged 12 or over. Letters have been emailed to all families and Sixth Form students. Please do return the Consent Form (Word Document) if you want your child to boost their immunity to the COVID-19 virus.
- You can read about the vaccination programme for young people here.
- For a first or second vaccination, or a booster, you can book online here.
- Further local information about the vaccination programme can be found here.
Useful COVID-19 information can be accessed on our website.
Word of the Week
We are currently focusing on the importance of making sure that all students feel that they can express themselves fluently in the classroom (this is known as ‘oracy’).
Each week we introduce a ‘Word of the Week’ to our students, with the intention of increasing a student’s vocabulary. In previous weeks, these words have been “nuance”, “autonomy” and “permeates”.
Word of the week for next week is “advocate“.
Work is underway to install more outdoor seating at the front of the school. This will provide further social areas for our students, so that they can enjoy being outside with their friends at break and lunchtime.
Work has also started on the remodelling of the kitchen car park. Once completed, this new area will include a designated space for Sixth Former bicycles, with easy access to the Sixth Form Study Room.
A few weeks ago, we wrote about our former student and his prestigious law scholarship. You can now read more details about Diallo’s achievement here.
It is always a great pleasure to hear from our former students after they have left – please do go and hear some more Sixth Form Success Stories, narrated by the students themselves.
Youth Parliament Candidate
Last week, we mentioned Ashan’s campaign to become a Member of Youth Parliament (MYP). He has been canvassing furiously all week; voting opens for students on Monday and lasts all week. We’ve included his manifesto video above – please do encourage your son/daughter/ward to vote!
Meeting Sir Mo Farah
This week, four lucky students met another of our former students – four-time Olympic champion, Mo Farah. They practised their journalistic skills as they sat down with Mo for a face-to-face interview. More to come on this next week, so keep your eyes on our social media and this website.