Dear Parents and Carers
We are delighted with the start that our students have made to this academic year. There is much that is new and our students have responded very positively to the changes. As we shared towards the end of the last academic year, there will be many exciting changes happening this year as we embrace the benefits of working collaboratively with the schools belonging to the Holy Family Catholic Multi Academy Trust and in particular St John Plessington. The date for academisation is now 1st November 2016.
Can I take this opportunity to thank you for the support you have given to your children, and us, in sending them in so smartly dressed and meeting our College uniform requirements. The new College bags look very smart indeed and we have already had a number of positive comments from the public about them. Crucially students, parents and teachers have commented on an improved climate for learning in classrooms.
Clarification over the wearing of jumpers
Many parents will be aware of the concerns that have been expressed about our insistence that students wear their grey V necked jumpers around College. We did write before the summer to make it clear that we intended to reinforce this part of the uniform which had become in many people’s eyes optional.
Students are required to wear their jumper when they enter the College site and, as a minimum, when travelling to and from lessons. Students can remove jumpers in lessons but must put them back on at the end of the lesson. Students can drink water only in lessons.
Students can remove their jumper when playing outside at break and lunchtime.
Obviously we want our students to look smart in their uniform when representing you and us in the local community. We do not insist that students continue to wear their jumper away from the College site.
Initials - not full names on bags
With regards to putting names on the new school bags to help identify them, we did advise that putting your child’s initials on would be helpful and many people have done this. However, we have noticed a small number where students have their full names on and we would strongly advise against this as there is a potential safeguarding issue if a person can identify a person from the name on their bag and use this as a means to engage them in conversation etc. We have contacted the bag supplier who would happy to stitch over the full name at no additional cost.
One of the most significant changes that you may have heard about in the national press is the changes that have taken place in the curriculum and the fact that this is now being recognised in a very significant change to the grading system at GCSE. Next summer students will receive grades 1 to 9 at GCSE in English and maths rather than grades G to A* and this will be rolled out into other subjects as we go forward. These are not the same numbers as the previous Key Stage 3 levels. This could be very confusing for students and parents. We are seeking to address that in a number of ways:
Key Stage 3 (Years 7 to 9) on Wednesday 12th October starting at 6pm
Year 10 on Thursday 13th October at 6pm.
Updating contact information
Occasionally we find it difficult to contact parents as telephone numbers and sometimes addresses have changed and we haven’t been notified. Can I ask you do this please. We will ask parents to check information at Review Days and Parents’ Evenings but please let us know immediately if you think that your details have changed.
Parent Governor Vacancy
As you may be aware our Governing Body has parental representation and the term of office of one of our parent governors is coming to an end. Please read the attached information and put yourself forward if you would like to make a contribution to our College in this vital role.
Thank you again for your support for the changes we are implementing. Working in partnership we will secure the best possible educational outcomes for your child.
Mr A Boyle Mr T Quinn
Headteacher Executive Headteacher
Enc. Flightpaths booklet
Parent Governor information