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Message From the Principal 01.03.24

Dear Parent / Carer 

It is always a pleasure to welcome the students back after any break and this week was no exception. I have had lots of conversations with many different students about what they spent their half term doing.

With it being the start of a new half term, I led the assemblies for all year groups and the theme was ‘Making time count.’ We started by talking about Leap Years but the main narrative was about time being our daily currency. I shared concepts from a film called ‘In Time’ where every member of society has a body clock and how they have to earn time through work as well as paying for everything with specified amounts of time. We talked about how everyone has a finite amount of time in their life, that there are just 1400 minutes in a day, and how to prioritise that time for the important things in our lives. I finished the assembly by sharing some of the incredible wonders of our planet with a view to inspiring students to want to go and see them first hand in later life; every person needs a little awe and wonder in their lives.  

A number of our Year 13 students travelled to India with Mrs Owen during half term to undertake some work with the charity, Salt of the Earth. The photos from the trip are amazing but equally emotional after seeing some of the poor conditions people are having to live in out there. The students all got a huge amount out of the trip and Mrs Owen is already looking at providing a similar opportunity for our current Year 12s, next year.

Year 11 students have been completing mock examinations all week which will provide them with an important update on how they are progressing ahead of the final exams in May and June. All Year 11 students should be revising daily at this point and their teachers will be providing them with specific feedback following the mock examinations on which areas or skills they need to practise.  

Next week, Year 9 students will have the opportunity to undertake some ‘taster’ sessions for the course they are thinking of choosing next year. This will give them an important insight into whether the subject is a suitable choice for them whilst also providing them with an overview of the content they will cover if they choose the course.  

The highlight of the week for me was the work of the Social Action Squad who started a new community reading project. Under the careful guidance of Mrs Bird and our Ethos Team Youth Worker, Rosie, two squads of students walked to Denfield Primary School and spent the morning helping the primary school students with their reading. Reading is such an important skill and it warms my heart to see our students giving up their time to help the future generation learn to read. The positive correlation between a high reading age and academic success is irrefutable and so I wanted to share the following clip sent to me by our fantastic Librarian, Ms Raven, if you can spare just 2 minutes of your time to watch it: Ten minutes a day could change everything

I hope you all have a pleasant and restful weekend,

Yours sincerely,

Mr B Baines


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