Welcome from the Co-Headteachers

Ways that you can support students to be their best

This week, students are working on embedding strong daily routines, including improved punctuality and attendance (see below for more). Parents/carers can increase the resilience of their son/ward by ensuring that students are on school site by 8.25am everyday. To support this drive, remember that our school canteen – The Pantry – provides a free porridge breakfast each morning at 8.00am while the school library is open at the same time for either PPA completion or reading for pleasure.

You can further support your son/ward by:

  • Resisting the temptation to do everything for him – he needs to learn to manage his time efficiently, which includes checking public transport for any disruptions.
  • Asking him about how he has positively contributed to school each day – for example, what’s been your favourite lesson today? Why is that?
  • Using every opportunity to keep in contact with us, using the Pastoral Support Managers if there are any issues.
  • Encouraging him to get organised the evening before. This saves everyone a lot of morning stress. He should check his timetable for the following day, pack his school bag and lay out his uniform if necessary.
  • Having a calendar on display at home clearly marked with different equipment needed for different days (sports kit, music, projects etc).
  • Checking that he is keeping up with his PPA (homework) tasks – he should have several each night.

Thank you to those parents/carers who have been providing feedback on the content within this newsletter through the feedback tool. A number of praise-worthy items have been shared with staff and a number of interesting suggestions have been made; we look forward to implementing some of these in the near future. One such suggestion includes another push on getting students to read to and alongside their parents/carers.

Simon Fisher and Jo Higginbottom

Work Experience

Can you help one or more of our students discover a career?

We continue to explore every opportunity to support students in Year 10 and 12 who are aiming to find a work placement in the summer term. From past experience, we know that the best type of networking is word-of-mouth. If any parents/carers know of any opportunities for one-day, five-day or ten-day work placements, please complete this form. Given that our mantra towards employability is “pathways not corridors”, we also recognise that talent is everywhere, yet opportunities are not. This means that we consciously and proactively look for work placements with a PLUS ONE opportunity which allows some of our more disadvantaged students to access more favourable employment placements. Such an ardent and ethical approach will hopefully, over time, increase social mobility.

Literacy Across the Curriculum

Encouraging students to “read, read, read”

Every teacher is a teacher of literacy – such is the importance of reading, oracy (structured speaking), and writing in every single subject. We believe that reading is absolutely fundamental to the success of your child. As such, every student should be reading for a minimum of 20 minutes every day in the form of:

  • Quiet reading (in a public area: kitchen, lounge) – not in his bedroom
  • Reading aloud to a parent/carer
  • Reading aloud to a sibling

Afterwards, show a genuine interest in what your son/ward has read; ask questions about the text, check in on any difficult vocabulary and, finally, ask him to summarise in 60 seconds. Such simple strategies will, over time, enhance his enjoyment of reading as well as his ability to access the curriculum in all subjects.

Coming Soon!

Some more dates for your calendar

  • Thursday 25 January 2024 – Year 11 Photographs
  • Thursday 25 January 2024 – KS5 Parents/Carers Evening
  • Thursday 1 and Friday 2 February – Whole School Production of ‘Emil and the Detectives’
  • Monday 12 – Friday 16 February – Half-Term
  • Wednesday 21 and Thursday 22 February – Year 8 HPV and MMR immunisations (students with consent)
  • Thursday 22 February – Year 9 Parents/Carers Evening
  • Monday 4 – Friday 8 March – Year 11 and Year 13 Pre-Public Examinations (PPEs)
  • Monday 4 – Friday 8 March – Sustainability Week
  • Thursday 7 March – Year 10 Parents/Carers Evening
  • Thursday 14 March – KS4 Courses Evening (Year 9)

The full calendar is available at this link.

Partnership Working

Showcasing the inspirational work carried out by leaders

All schools are involved in effective partnership working which not only supports young people but also supports the journey of the institution. In forthcoming weeks, we plan to share how partnership working is brought to life through a selection of ‘partner stories’; many of these will exemplify the impact of our unique brand of challenge, collaboration, leadership development and knowledge exchange on our school as well as individuals and student groups.

These stories will showcase the inspirational work carried out by leaders across our school. As ever, we are profoundly grateful to all who contribute to this partnership work and are delighted that many of our partnerships continues to grow and flourish – and make a difference to young people – in 2024.

‘No Minutes Lost’

Supporting our young people to be consistently ready for learning

At the start of this term, we have launched our ‘No Minutes Lost‘ house competition. to encourage and support excellent punctuality in the mornings and to lessons throughout the day.

Last week, the top forms per year were 7Sh and 7Tr (tie), 8Bl and 8Sn (tie), 9Sh, 10Sn and 11Sn. Shackleton were the top house overall.

Please do support us in this drive by discussing with your son/ward the importance and benefits of good punctuality.

One Stop Shop

A reminder about Hounslow’s domestic abuse support

Last week, Hounslow’s One Stop Shop drop-in service moved to the Holy Trinity Church, High Street, Hounslow, TW3 1HG. Open every Wednesday between 10.00am and 12.00pm, this service provides free guidance on family law, protection orders, housing and benefits to anyone affected by domestic and/or sexual violence. No appointment is necessary. Find out more on Hounslow’s website.

Learn English at Home (LEAH)

A local charity helping adults learn English

Learn English at Home (LEAH) is a charity which supports refugees, asylum seekers and migrants who cannot attend college to learn English. They support adults in Kingston, Richmond and Hounslow. They are looking for individuals to join their community of volunteers. This means giving just an hour a week to support others. If you know of a parent/carer who needs help, you can refer someone.

‘Emil and the Detectives’ – Tickets on Sale

Get yours now for this fabulous production

In case you missed our email yesterday, tickets are now on sale for our whole school production of ‘Emil and the Detectives’. It takes place on Thursday 1 and Friday 2 February. You can see the full promotional poster above , featuring (L-R) David Ali, Axle Moldero, Oscar Lonsdale, Isaac Shaw, Sam Goldsmith, Ranveer Thakur and Maks Tor. Tickets cost just £5 for adults and £2 for everyone else.

Click the poster to find out how you can get yours.

Safeguarding

How we teach our boys about relationships

In the UK, Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) is a legally required part of the PSHE curriculum. Over the course of secondary school, it covers topics such as consent, healthy relationships, puberty and contraception. The goal is to provide comprehensive and age-appropriate information, promoting understanding, respect, values based relationships and well-being among students as they begin to navigate these issues and prepare for adult life.   

This term, our Year 9 and 10 students have started their units on relationships. The school’s provision is carefully planned using the educational approach known as the ‘spiral curriculum’. This approach revisits and builds upon previously learned concepts in a repetitive and expanding manner, year on year. The revisiting of topics as they progress through school allows students to deepen their understanding with each encounter. Instead of linear progress, the spiral curriculum recognises that learning is an ongoing process, where ideas should be revisited at increasing levels of depth complexity.   

In the domain of healthy relationships, it is pleasing to see our students benefiting from the spiral curriculum approach. Our Year 9 begin with the importance of friendship and the successful ingredients of friendship. Our Year 10 students are then able to return to the topic of relationships and deepen their knowledge through a careful consideration of romantic and sexual relationships including the legal position on consent.  


If you have a concern about the safety or welfare of your child, please email the safeguarding team at safeguarding@isleworthsyon.org. If there is an emergency call 999 or, for non-urgent matters that require police attention, call 101.

House Point Champions

Recognising students going above and beyond

As you are aware, rewards are an important feature of life at school. House points are a key way that we recognise students who have gone above and beyond in school – whether in the classroom, extra-curricular activities, student leadership or citizenship. The students below have received a Diamond award via email today. This means that they have earned over 200 house points. Congratulations to them!

Well done to:

Harry FISHER (7Br)
Sam GILMOUR (9Am)
Jonas PARDO BUIKUS (8Tu)
Arman SADAT (9Am)

Note: this list is accurate as of 7.00am today (Friday). If your child reached a threshold after 7.00am on Friday, they will appear in the next list. 

Pride of House

Celebrating student success

Our weekly Pride of House awards are a fantastic way to reward students for working hard and contributing to the life of the school. Each week, the pastoral staff nominate a student from each house! You can check out the full roster by clicking a house badge below.

News

Inspiring students now and preparing them for later

Jack Petchey Speak Out! Workshop

All day Tuesday, some of our Year 10 High Potential Learners (HPL) took part in a workshop preparing for the Jack Petchey Speak Out Challenge. This challenge is a UK-wide youth speaking competition; the session was led by a specialist external trainer and focused on honing public speaking skills ahead of the regional final in February. By the end of the day, students each spoke out on a topic of their choice – delivering a message with a positive impact. 

Four students have progressed through to the school final, where they will compete to earn a place in the regional final. Those students are Axle Moldero, Muhammad Nagi, Xavier Williams-Rhodes and Ayman Shah. Well done!

Homerton Information Session

On Friday, we were thrilled to welcome Lindsay Robinot-Jones – a representative from Homerton College, University of Cambridge – into school. High Potential Learners from Years 9-12 were invited to the talk, which lasted for an hour and a half. Students were given vital information about the process of applying to universities in Oxford or Cambridge (also known as Oxbridge) – which was particularly fascinating to our younger students who may not have thought that far ahead. Students were also able to ask questions throughout, and came away with a greater knowledge about studying at the top universities in the world.

Examinations Finish!

The January examinations season has now been completed in school, with Year 12 students finishing their internal examinations and students taking vocational courses in Years 12 and 13 completing some public examinations. For the latter, these exams will form part of their final grade.

Our excellent vocational offer continues to be a strength within school, offering students an alternative to the A level pathway. Vocational results continue to excel, with 80% of results at either a Distinction* or Distinction (A*/A equivalent).

Year 11 students also received their results for the December examinations this afternoon. It was set up to mirror the summer results day, giving them a flavour of that unique experience. We hope that the results today give students the push they need to maximise their progress over the coming months.

Year 7 Parents/Carers Evening

Yesterday evening (Thursday), we hosted our Year 7 Parents/Carers Evening – offering families the first chance to speak with subject teachers about how students have been progressing in each of their lessons. These events are so important to help strengthen the connection between home and school as we move into the new term. Thank you to everyone who attended.

Aayan Ahmed – Dentistry Work Experience

And finally for this week – we love to tell you stories of students using their initiative to better themselves and gain greater opportunities in the future. One such example is Year 12’s Aayan Ahmed, who undertook work experience at Crawley Dental Clinic during the holidays.

He received glowing reviews for his time with them; they commented, “Throughout his time with us, Aayan demonstrated exceptional curiosity and a genuine interest in the field of dentistry. He observed procedures diligently and actively engaged by asking insightful questions when necessary. It is evident that your school has played a significant role in shaping him into an independent and well-rounded young adult. 

“Aayan’s passion for dentistry and his keen fascination with patient care were evident during his time at the clinic. His knowledge of the healthcare field surpassed expectations, making it a pleasure to have him shadow us. Best wishes to Aayan as he embarks on his journey towards a successful career in dentistry.”