Welcome from the Co-Headteachers

Being tolerant and respectful of difference

We are very proud of being a boys’ school. We enjoy teaching boys because it is our fervent belief that the world needs kind fathers, caring husbands and partners and brilliant, grown-up young men who have had the best start in life. At Isleworth & Syon, we enjoy a proud heritage of excellent examination results, outstanding enrichment opportunities and positive contributions to our local community through student leadership. We work tirelessly to maintain our high standards.

One aspect of these high standards includes our students being tolerant and respectful of difference. As Muslims around the world begin the holy month of Ramadan, it is a good time for all of us to reflect on how we approach diversity in our school setting. This week, our outstanding House assemblies have promoted the importance of diversity as well as broad-mindedness and liberalism. We regular remind our students of how lucky they are to have access to a free, excellent education which prepares them for a successful life in modern Britain. Next week is both Science Week as well as Comic Relief 2024 – please drive your son/ward to buy into our extensive enrichment programmes which strive to develop our students as confident, responsible citizens.

Thank you to those parents/carers who have given us helpful feedback about this newsletter. We constantly aim to improve, so do leave a comment if you have any ideas about how this weekly publication can be even better.

Simon Fisher and Jo Higginbottom

Welcome to our New Intake!

Joining the school community ahead of their start in September 2024

Last Friday, offers were sent out to Year 6 families ahead of their start with us in Year 7 in September 2024. 

To those families, welcome to the Isleworth & Syon community – we hope that you enjoy this weekly slice of life in school. We are very much looking forward to meeting you in the weeks ahead.

We also recommend reading some of the past issues for this online publication, so you can learn more about what’s been happening so far this year – as well as some of the things you can look forward to during your time as Isleworthians!

Pre-Public Examinations – Complete!

A huge well done to all students who took examinations this week

Students in Year 11 and Year 13 completed their Pre-Public Examinations today (Friday), while Year 10 statistics candidates also sat a practice paper. These internal assessments were the last chance for students to hone their strengths and iron out their weaknesses ahead of their public examinations this summer. All week, students sat practice papers in full exam conditions – we were very impressed with student conduct throughout. Well done, everyone!


Some advice for parents/carers

In a few days, Muslims around the world embark on a spiritual journey marked by fasting, prayer, and reflection. Ramadan is a time that brings communities together, fosters personal growth, and strengthens bonds. We are aware that many of our Muslim students and staff will, as usual, be observing Ramadan. The advice for schools from The Muslim Council of Britain is that “in general, Muslims are encouraged not to use Ramadan as an opportunity to avoid aspects of normal life but rather to cope with normal life under a different set of guidelines and conditions”.

Therefore, it is the expectation that students will follow the normal school curriculum during Ramadan. Whilst the challenge and discipline of fasting is to continue with normal everyday life, our staff will be aware of the commitment that students make to their faith.

Given the above – PE staff will plan lessons with the awareness that students will need to avoid excessive exertion. However, students are still required to take part in these PE lessons and, therefore, should always have their PE/games kit. Where and when appropriate, students can continue to opt in to any of our extensive enrichment activities.

More broadly, simple acts of awareness, such as recognising the significance of the month and the potential need for flexible schedules or adaptive teaching, can significantly enhance the experience for fasting Muslims. Crucially, staff will also, as always, praise students and colleagues who are clearly making a special effort regarding their reflective attitudes and behaviour. This is a period of solidarity.

We wish our Muslim students and staff the best of luck in their daily sacrifices during the period of Ramadan.

Coming Soon!

Some more dates for your calendar

  • Thursday 14 March – KS4 Courses Evening (Year 9)
  • Tuesday 26 March – Year 11/13 Parents/Carers Evening 2
  • Wednesday 27 March – Drama & Music Showcase
  • Thursday 28 March – End of Spring Term (students dismissed at 12.30pm)
  • Tuesday 16 April – Start of Summer Term
  • Thursday 25 April – Year 8 Parents/Carers Evening
  • Monday 6 May – Bank Holiday
  • Tuesday 7 May – Monday timetable
  • Thursday 9 May – Public examinations begin

The full calendar is available at this link.

Comic Relief

Our next charity event

On Friday 15 March, we will be holding our next charity event – in support of Comic Relief. We will be taking donations as well as holding a series of small events. Find more information in this letter, which was sent earlier this week. These events are so important to teach our students to be mature, confident and responsible citizens.

The Pantry Menus

New choices on offer from our catering service

A reminder that The Pantry’s brand-new menu was launched on Monday. It runs on a three-week rotation and offers a range of nutritious choices. Do check it out on this page.

Invigilators Wanted

A good opportunity for parents/carers

We are still looking for Examination Invigilators. You will be employed on a casual basis to supervise students in mock and external examinations throughout the school year.

As a reminder, the hours are variable; morning sessions begin at 8.00am and afternoon sessions typically finish at around 3.30pm. You will need to be reliable and punctual, as well as having good communication skills both verbal and written, including spoken fluency and accuracy in English.

For further details, read the full Job Description and how to apply on the ‘Vacancies’ page.

New Podcast Episode

A new episode of our podcast

Throughout this school year, we have been publishing episodes of the Isleworth & Syon podcast. You can access all the previous episodes at this link, including:

  • Our Favourite Books: Part 1
  • Our Favourite Books: Part 2
  • Reading for the Stage
  • Reading & Success: A Sixth Form Perspective
  • Reading and Writing

We are thrilled today to publish episode 6, which is called “Mixing the Elements: Reading and Science”. In this episode, the newly-formed Science Society – made up of Year 12 students Nishant, Aayan and Hafidh – join the podcast to share their passion for all things science as well as letting us know about their exciting activities for Science Week next week.

You can listen via the embedded player below:

A direct link is also available if the player does not work.

Once again, we would love your feedback once you’ve had a listen – please leave any comments in this form.

Nature Competition

A chance for students to get published in a national newspaper

Students up to the age of 14 have a fantastic opportunity to be published in the Guardian. The newspaper’s Young Country Diary series asks students to write a short piece about a recent account with nature. The deadline for entry is midday on Monday 1 April – find out more information at this link.

Photograph: Richard Saker/The Guardian


Promoting better mobile phone health for teenagers

Young people and mobile phones have become inseparable in today’s digital age. While mobile phones offer numerous benefits, such as communication and access to information, concerns about their impact on teenage health are shared among parents and teachers.

Excessive use of mobile phones among teenagers has been linked to various health issues. Prolonged screen time can contribute to eye strain, disrupted sleep patterns, and increased “sedentary behaviour” (physical inactivity). This can potentially leading to physical health problems, including obesity. Our experience backs up research showing that constant exposure to social media and online content may contribute to mental health issues like anxiety, depression, and poor self-esteem.

The addictive nature of mobile phones can also negatively impact academic performance, as students may be easily distracted by notifications and social media while studying. Additionally, excessive use may hinder face-to-face social interactions, hindering the development of crucial interpersonal skills.

To promote better mobile phone health for teenagers, it is essential for parents/carers to establish clear boundaries on screen time, encourage regular breaks, and foster open communication about online activities. Educating teenagers about the potential health risks and promoting a balanced approach to technology can help them develop healthier habits and maintain overall well-being and effective study. 

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

Celebrating student success

In school, students receive House Points for positive contributions to school life. When they reach certain thresholds, they receive certificates. Today, students have reached the Prestige threshold – meaning that they have earned a massive 300 house points! Well done to them as well as the students who received Diamond awards (200 points) as listed below.

Congratulations to them!

View the names

Prestige (300 points)
Finn BARNES (7Tr)

Diamond (200 points)
Ayaan AHMAD (7Bl)
Abdul AJMAL (8Sh)
Shahjahan AKBAR (11Sn)
Jacob BAILEY (8Am)
Tyler BARRETT (9Ad)
Matthew BICKNELL (8Bl)
Jaitra EDULA (7Bl)
Elias GHAURI (8Am)
Saifullah LAKHANPAR (7Am)
Rayyan MALIK (10Tr)
Abdur-Razzaq NADEEM (8Bl)
Sai NUSUMU (8Bl)
Luke O’CONNELL (10Ad)
Ryan PAGE (9Tu)
Jordan SANDHU (7Tr)
Jai SANDHU (7Bl)
Vanshpreet SINGH (10Ad)
Alfie STEPHENS (7Br)
Finley THOMAS (9Sn)
Fin WOOD (8Sh)

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. 

Careers Corner

Three former students share their journeys

It has been a busy National Careers Week, with three former students coming into school to speak about their chosen careers.

On Tuesday, we were visited by Dave Burns of Burns Financial planning (pictured first below). He spoke about his journey from TFL apprentice to financial planner and the challenges of moving from being employed to self-employed. His wide-ranging talk gave all of the students much food for thought. On Wednesday, we were joined by Haris Majid of The Dune Group (pictured second below). Haris spoke passionately about his career in IT, his future plans, and the importance of soft skills in climbing the career ladder. His point about decisions being made in corridors and not boardrooms was particularly pertinent. Our final visitor of the week was former Head Boy, Rahul Rajput of Keystone Law (pictured third below). His fascinating presentation gave our students a real insight into the challenges and successes of a career in law. Rahul fielded over 40 minutes of questions from students keen to hear about his professional journey and the skills needed to succeed. He spoke about resilience and the need to broaden ones horizons, about the challenges posed by AI, and the importance of the written word in emails and the litigation process.

Mr Adams (Career Leader) said, “I cannot thank these gentlemen enough for giving up their time to support the next generation of Isleworthians. If you feel you have something that our students would like to hear about, please don’t hesitate to contact me at the school.”

Pride of House

Celebrating student success

Another 40 students have been given a Pride of House award by their tutor this week. It is richly deserved for a fantastic contribution to school life – Join us in celebrating these superb Isleworthians via the house badges below.


A variety of opportunities for students to “buy-in” to our school ethos

Auschwitz Visit

Two Year 12 history students have been lucky enough to join the Lessons from Auschwitz (LFA) project. This unique opportunity is run by the Holocaust Educational Trust and gave students the chance to visit Nazi concentration and death camp Auschwitz last week.

Daniel Kammerling and Isaac Yahya made their own way to and from Gatwick Airport and then toured authentic sites and museum exhibits with a local guide as well as a trained LFA educator. You can read Isaac’s reflection below – note that it contains graphic imagery describing concentration camps and the Holocaust.

Read the reflection

“I felt it was important to go to Auschwitz as the Holocaust is an important part of modern-day history. I wanted to go to understand the impact it had on a minority population at the time and empathise with the people affected at the camps throughout the course of WW2. This experience took me by surprise with the most harrowing thing for me being the two tonnes of hair on display showing the scale of prisoners at the camps. This trip made me more aware of the importance of the Holocaust in modern day society and how it is constantly emphasised in order to spread awareness to stop genocides like this from happening again on such a large scale.”

Photographs by Daniel Kammerling

Intermediate Maths Challenge – Results

At the end of January, 96 students in Years 9-11 took part in the Intermediate Maths Challenge. This multiple-choice assessment, run by the UK Maths Trust, is a nationwide competition – and we have just received the results!

Students could achieve Bronze, Silver or Gold colour prizes, as well as a participation award. Results were very positive, with one example being an incredible 85% of Year 11s taking part received colours. 

A record number of students progressed to the next round – Ken Burden, Jayden Kwok, Kai Mahoon, Aayan Memon, George Seget, Rohan Senthil Kumar and Ayman Shah. For the second year in a row, Ayman achieved the best score in school. Well done to everyone who took part, and good luck in the next round!

Student Council

At Isleworth & Syon, it is so important to give students a voice – so that they can make active contributions to the ongoing development of the school. Last week, the Co-Head Students (Anya and Oliver) and their deputies ran the latest Student Council meeting. The House & Citizenship ambassador from each form came together to discuss school matters such as school safety, rewards systems, food provision at break and lunch, lessons and curriculum, and anything else they wanted to talk about.

Students were outstanding representatives for their peers at the meeting. All ambassadors have been sent a link to vote on proposals; all getting 66% support or more will be taken to the Senior Leadership Team for discussion and implementation. We will say a lot more about this in the coming weeks!

Year 10 Parents/Carers Evening

On Thursday. Year 10 parents/carers were invited in for Parents/Carers Evening, taking part in short meetings with teachers. Discussions were fruitful, looking at the progress made so far this year and how students can do even better in the rest of this year. There was also a work experience stand where students could find more information about how to organise their July placement. Thank you to all the parents/carers who attended!

Students had the chance to air their opinions and offer suggestions for how our whole-school reading drive can be enhanced, as well as anything else they wanted to get off their chest regarding school life.

Festival of Apprenticeships

As part of National Careers Week, we took a group of 30 Sixth Form students to the Festival of Apprenticeships on Tuesday. This event, held at the Kia Oval in Vauxhall, gave students the opportunity to talk to nearly 40 employers including the BBC, British Airways, Metropolitan Police, Lloyds TSB and the Royal Navy. This was a brilliant way to students to explore a diverse range of industries and learn about various apprenticeship opportunities. Students loved visiting  the different stalls and making invaluable networking connections.

Sport Impact Conference

We know that Isleworth & Syon students are very lucky to have a diet of both high-quality physical education and a huge array of extra-curricular activities which they can attend. In addition, Physical activity levels at break and lunchtime are exceptional as boys play a range of sports like basketball, cricket, football and table tennis. 

Earlier this week, our Year 12 Sports Leaders supported an important regional public health event, focusing on school strategies to reduce obesity among children and young people. These senior student ambassadors were responsible for engaging with over 250 delegates – with some even presenting their own ideas on how to engage young people and communities. They spoke in a coherent, concise and precise manner – a credit to our school. Students had a great time – including meeting former I&S student Sir Mo Farah!

Such external leadership opportunities are invaluable; they provide unique experiences for our young people to both develop their soft skills and build-up their growing CVs. Indeed, this is a big part of why the school was recently awarded “Centre of Excellence” status!