Headteacher Weekly Bulletin 12th July 2019

Good afternoon

This is possibly the last ‘blog’ of the year as next Friday is both a half-day and the last day of term, which inevitably means I shall be shattered and heading for either a lie-down or a cold pint, dependent on just how shattered I am.  Having said that, there is so much going on next week, it would be a shame for someone not to report on it, so let’s see!

This time last week, I was typing away furiously about to head off to the 6th Form soirée at Bowdon CC.  I can report that it was a wonderful afternoon once again; the weather was glorious, the surroundings delightful and our ‘graduates’ were on top form.  Well done to Ms Grey and team for their efforts in putting on another great ‘do’.

The frantic pace of recent weeks has certainly not relented in the last 5 days.

The KS3 PSHE trip to London took place earlier this week, Mr and Mrs Soldiew took a small group of students to Dino Golf at the Trafford Centre as a reward, Mr Riley and Mrs Fairbairn were putting pupils in local primaries through their paces with various Maths challenges at their own schools, there was a reward trip for 50 students from each year to Blackpool on Thursday, a rewards film and Domino’s pizza afternoon for others, the Year 10 Enterprise day on Wednesday, Year 7 Project in a Day today, the Year 9 ‘take your child to work’ day today, Mrs Stevens from MFL hosted a Bastille Day event for local primary pupils yesterday and I could go on!  We like to keep busy. 

With regard to the Bastille Day event, we received this email of thanks from a colleague from one of the schools in attendance yesterday: “I just wanted to thank you for such a great afternoon yesterday.  So much thought had been put into all your activities and the children absolutely loved them and learnt a lot from them.  They also loved having the opportunity to see inside a secondary school and they were very enthusiastic about their whole experience on the way back to school despite the driving rain!  Many thanks too to your student helpers – they engaged with the children so well and were very impressive ambassadors for the school.”

With the Year 10 Healthy Lifestyles day next Wednesday and ‘Wellyfest’ and ‘Wellfest the Concert’ on the penultimate day of term, the ‘fun’ isn’t over yet. 

Just to reassure those at home, there is still plenty of ‘traditional’ learning going on in School (primarily response to internal exams) in addition to the experiential variety all these invaluable opportunities clearly provide. 

We have had our 6 Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs) join us for the last fortnight as we always do at this time of year.  I have to say, we have been impressed with their enthusiasm and dedication and they will be a welcome and valuable addition to the team in September. I have to feel very reassured that we are able to attract colleagues of this calibre. I hope the 6 of you enjoy the summer break; you’re going to need it ahead of the challenges that await you next year!

We are in the process of checking reports at the moment; a painstaking yet essential process of course.  I hope you will appreciate the time and effort Form Tutors have invested this year (even more than usual, I have to acknowledge).  I posed the question some time ago, whether our reports reflected the extent to which our teachers (I refer primarily to Form Tutors) know and care for our young people.  With that in mind we prescribed certain areas to be covered in the tutor reports with further guidelines and, my goodness, haven’t the tutors delivered! The considerable number I have read so far have been excellent, so a huge thank you to all my colleagues.  As a parent, I asked myself what would I want from a school report and the Version 2019 certainly ticks the boxes for me.  Academic ‘progress’ (whatever that might be) is a very complex concept and one that no end of year report could ever accurately reflect but our intention was that the ‘package’ that consists of the online assessment calendar, assessment feedback sheets, commitment to learning grades, knowledge organisers etc provides a fuller picture throughout the year for those parents who wish to engage more closely with their child’s learning journey.  Anyway, as always, any feedback once you receive your child’s report would be most welcomed.

Congratulations to Year 12 student Lauren Tidbury who passed her Grade 7 Singing exam with a score of 100%! Wow!  Lauren is a very modest type who has hidden her light under a bushel for far too long.  I look forward to hearing her perform very soon. 

Please could I encourage you to read the item by Year 8 student Eve Cripps about her fundraising endeavours on the 28th July.  I’m sure all support / donations would be gratefully received.

It’s now period 5 and the Year 7 projects are coming to a close.  I’ve been round all of them this morning and there is some truly brilliant stuff going on.  The drama piece, directed by Mrs Simpson and Miss Spencer, is about to be performed so I must dash.

I may add more to my ramblings after school but I’m on SLT detention duty so may not have chance.  So, if that is the case, have a lovely weekend.  Fingers crossed we won’t be subjected to the torrential downpour of yesterday evening that had me and a whole army of cleaners mopping and bailing out the water which was flooding (slight exaggeration) the Vale building.  I don’t think the world’s drainage systems are equipped to deal with climate change!  Unfortunately, this issue prevented me from watching the Oscars performing arts group ‘showcase’.  Not to worry, Mrs Simpson has included a report this week and I believe the performances were videoed so I will take a look at some point. 

Anyway, the sun is now out and I shall be heading home to have a glass of wine on my newly laid patio as soon as possible.

Oh, one last thing; come on England (in the cricket world cup final on Sunday)!

S Beeley