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Headteachers' Blog

Week commencing 17th July 2017

 

End of the school year

And so we reach the beginning of the last week of the school year. I will be repeating myself, but where the devil did that one go? Blink and a cohort join us and journey through Year 7. Another toil away in preparation for their all too important GCSE exams, then relax, enjoy their Prom at a local hotel and prepare for life Post 16. Finally, our eldest students sadly, leave us and venture out into the big wide world. We hope that collectively we, in conjunction with parents, have done all we can to prepare them for life’s journey.

As well as students leaving we will be saying goodbye to a small number of staff – we have approximately 150! Unusually, this year we have a number retiring: Mr Lawmann (Maths), Mr Wardle (Head of Aqua) and Mrs White (Art & Design). Between them they have contributed in excess of 100 years to the profession. Also leaving will be Ms Thomas, formerly Head of World and now Director of SPIRA, our relatively new research and innovation centre for teachers. Their contribution to the Stanley Park High journey has been immense and their collective experience will be sorely missed. In addition, we will all miss Mrs Eddison (ICT), Mr McColl (Science), Mr Amejee (DT), Miss Hirst (English), Miss Milligan (Ignis) and Miss Jayatilaka (Music). On behalf of the school I would like to thank them, along with support staff who are leaving us, and wish them all the very best for the future.

We shall introduce our new staff in the first blog of the new academic year, which will be on Monday 4th September.

This will be a busy last week of term. Tonight we have our Sports Personality Evening for invited students and their parents. Just like its cousin, Celebration Evening, it promises to be a fantastic event. Ms Symons, Associate Headteacher, will be our host. On Monday and Tuesday we have our Year 8 EFC graduation interviews. These will be followed by the formal graduation ceremony on Tuesday evening and Stanley in the Park. We strongly encourage parents remain to listen to some fantastic musical performances.

Wednesday is the last day of the academic year for our students. It will be a Mufti-Day with all proceeds going to their chosen charity. Students will be dismissed at 11:40am.

Over the summer we will be undertaking some minor rebuilding work at the front of the school. Student reception will be having a makeover and we will be creating a larger medical room. As a result of these changes, from September, students will only enter and exit via the glass doors in front of the student services reception. The side door to our main reception will be for parents and visitors only. The summer will also see a refurbishment of the main SPIRA room (learning resource centre).

During Summer School we shall welcome our incoming Year 7 students. This runs from 21st to 23rd August. We shall also be here on 17th August for A Level results day, and 24th August for GCSE results day. Good luck to all our students, we hope they achieve the results they have worked so hard for.

We wish you all a wonderful and relaxing summer break. We look forward to seeing students back after the summer break starting with Year 7 on Tuesday 5th September, followed by Preparation for Learning Day for Years 8-11 on Wednesday 6th September. Year 12 enrol Tuesday 5th and Year 13 on Wednesday 6th, with the Post 12 Induction Day set for Thursday 7th September.

Horizon News

Last Thursday Mr Wardle organised a Coffee Morning for parents associated with Horizon School, which attracted the best ever turn out for one of these events. Both new and existing parents were joined by parents of two students who have left but still have strong links with the school. They shared news of their boys; Anthony Blake, a talented musician and singer has passed his first year exams at NESCOT and resumes there in September. Meanwhile, Ethan Smith has just finished his first year at Surrey University reading Politics and Sociology. Their success is encouraging for others following in their footsteps.

Award News

We were delighted to hear news of an ex-student, Laura Smith, who has been recognised as Outstanding BTEC Hospitality, Travel & Tourism Student of the Year 2017 at the national BTEC Awards. Laura has been studying at Coulsdon Sixth Form College. Congratulations to Laura on her success.

Rewards

Students are awarded reward points for outstanding effort, behaviour, attendance and achievement. The totals stand at a very high level as we approach the end of term. All have worked hard to achieve these great totals and we would like to commend all students for their effort. The totals are set out below:

  Year  7 Year  8 Year  9 Year 10 Year 11 Total
Beeches 1876 2148 1487 909 738 7158
Carew 1924 2366 1461 998 697 7446
Oaks 1619 1974 1210 739 650 6192
Wandle 2548 2052 1339 865 827 7631
Total 7967 8540 5497 3511 2912 28427

 

Information for parents and carers

With the summer imminent, we have been asked by Public Health England to pass on the following information to parents and carers:

MenACWY

The MenACWY vaccine protects against several forms of meningococcal disease which can cause meningitis (inflammation of the brain) and septicaemia (blood poisoning).

Meningitis can be fatal and those who recover may be left severely disabled. Since 2009 there has been a large increase in group W meningococcal disease (MenW) in England and there is no sign of the numbers declining. Older teenagers are more at risk from MenW, especially when starting university where they will come into contact with many new people of a similar age.

MenACWY vaccine is now being offered by GP practices to year 13 school leavers (teenagers born between 01/09/1998-31/08/1999).

MMR

The MMR vaccine helps protect against measles mumps and rubella. If unvaccinated or not up to date, then young people should ask for the MMR vaccine at the same time they receive their MenACWY vaccination.

Measles is viral infection that can be very unpleasant and may sometimes lead to serious complications, particularly in infants, pregnant women and those with weakened immune systems.

Measles is highly infectious and spreads easily in those who are not protected, particularly in households and at social gatherings, such as festivals.

Words of the Week

Every two weeks, the school focuses on new words which broaden the vocabulary. This week…

The literacy word of the week is Novice
The numeracy word of the week is Bearing


Week commencing 10th July 2017

Real World Learning – Our Excellent Futures Curriculum

Two recent events clearly demonstrate why we are very proud of our Excellent Futures Curriculum. The first concerns our Year 7 Performance students, whose task earlier this year was to interview residents of a local care home as a part of their ‘My Hero’ project. Last week we were contacted by the Activity Coordinator of Eothen Homes, who wrote to say:

“It’s with great sadness that we lost Paul last month after a short illness.  I wanted to let you know as your students interviewed him for their project.   Most importantly I wanted to let you and the students know what an impact it made on Paul’s life meeting you all...”

She explained how much he had enjoyed discussing his story with our students, adding “It made me very proud to have brought you together .... I think it’s important that students know how much their time and effort meant to Paul”.

At Paul’s funeral, his nephew shared this news, and quoted from the student interview in the eulogy, including the student journalist’s reflection about meeting him:

“I thought Paul was a nice, friendly person, who put others before himself”.

We are glad that this opportunity arose through our project; that it gave pleasure and comfort to those interviewed, and that the conversation with Paul and others like him inspired our students so much.

Secondly, our Year 7 students are now undertaking a project called ‘Backpacking’, which involves them planning to get around Europe with a relatively small amount of money. Charles, from Performance School, has been asking lots of questions starting with “Can I?” His teacher, Ms Townsend, has answered that “He can, as long as he .…etc.”

He asked if he could buy a car here, sell it on arrival in Calais and use the profit to fund his trip further. In his research he found out that VW Beetles were going up in value currently. He sourced one here, approached Autotrader and asked them for their estimated selling price and speed at which it would sell in France. He then converted the Euro profit back to Sterling and is starting his trip with just over an extra £1000! He will go far!

Both experiences show different facets of our Excellent Futures Curriculum, and demonstrate the value it brings.

Changes for September

Our opportunity base for autistic students, Horizon School, is recognised by Ofsted and in the academic world as an outstanding centre of excellence. Developments were announced last week regarding the leadership team for the base, both in Aqua (for mildly autistic students) and Ignis (moderately autistic students).

In 2017-18 we plan to share our practice with other schools and organisations, and lead research so that we can become a lead training centre in the country.  Ms Bailey, until now Head of Horizon School, will lead in these key areas.  Her huge SEN knowledge and vital skills will continue to benefit us, and she will work closely with both Aqua and Ignis on three days each week.

Ms Symons, our Associate Headteacher, will act as the Head of Horizon School, managing day-to-day matters and developing effective inclusion practice across the whole school. She is looking forward to the opportunity to work with students and parents.

Given Ms Symons move to lead Horizon, I will oversee the other three schools

We shall be sad to say goodbye to Derek Wardle, Head of Aqua, who retires after thirty years’ service to the school. We wish him well for the future. We are in a period of change, and a new Head of Aqua is not being sought at the present time. We will share news about other staff who are leaving us in next week’s Blog.

Year 11 Prom

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Every year we are thrilled to see our hard working Year 11 students let their hair down and enjoy themselves at their Prom. This year was no exception as they gathered at the Hallmark Hotel to dance the night away and celebrate the end of their exams. The evening was a huge success thanks to the wonderful organisation of Miss Patel, Head of Post-16.

Like our students, we look forward to the summer and share their anticipation for the results due on 24 August; we wish them well as they embark on further studies, apprenticeships or employment.

Celebration Evening

On a scorching summer evening last Thursday, over 300 parents, friends and students gathered in the Sports Hall to applaud those students who received awards in each subject area and from every mini school. Some wonderful performances entertained the audience, and ex-student Lewis Farley told the inspiring story of his determination to follow his dream career, which has resulted in his recent start as First Officer, flying for Easyjet. Well done to all students who took part and received certificates – and keep up the good work.

Mini Olympics

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Last Friday children from three local primary schools joined us for our annual Mini Olympics event, competing enthusiastically with much support from their friends. The morning started with the Opening Ceremony, and children took part in a number of events including 60/100/200 metre sprints, javelin, shot putt, long jump and relays.

It was a happy occasion with a wonderful atmosphere. Results were:

1st place - Stanley Park Juniors A (Kenya)
2nd Place - Barrow Hedges C (Canada)
3rd Place - Barrow Hedges A (Australia)

Ice lollies were handed out afterwards as a treat, and they helped competitors to cool down in the high temperatures.

Thanks to Miss Carter for organising. She was impressed with the standard of competition, and commented, ‘Overall talent was very high, and results were extremely close this year’.

Well done to all who took part.

Year 7 Subject Based Student Led Conferences

We were delighted to see so many parents and friends for our youngest students’ subject based student led conferences on 29 and 30 June. Our students rose superbly to the challenge, displaying their learning and their determination to succeed. We are proud of the way they have tackled this task, which is daunting at first, but has been proved to instil confidence. They should be very proud of themselves, and the feedback shows that parents are proud of them too. Well done to all students involved.

 

Strongly agree

Agree

Disagree

Strongly Disagree

% Agree or

Strongly Agree

Before the conference I would have preferred a ‘traditional’ parents’ evening.

14

43

51

22

47%

I was informed about the Subject Based Conferences and knew what to expect.

60

68

4

 

97%

My child was well prepared for the conference.

85

46

2

 

98%

My child led each conference rather than the teacher.

97

37

1

 

99%

I understand what my child has been learning in each subject.

82

49

1

 

99%

I felt that my child addressed both strengths and areas for development.

81

52

 

 

100%

The conference made me proud of my child.

111

23

 

 

100%

The conference will make it easier to discuss school and learning with my child.

80

48

3

 

98%

I am pleased with my child’s progress.

88

40

1

1

98%

Overall, the Subject Conference was a positive experience.

95

37

1

 

99%

After the conference I would have preferred a ‘traditional’ parents’ evening.

16

26

51

39

32%

I would recommend this process to friends/ colleagues.

63

61

4

1

96%

 

Many schools are hoping to move to Student-Led Conferences. We are very much looking forward to travelling to the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts on Tuesday to provide training on how to adopt them.

Self-Harm

Last week we shared with parents information about a worrying trend, the increasing numbers of reported cases of self-harm and suicide among young people. We hope that all found this email and the links provided helpful. We hope that building an open culture around these issues will dispel anxiety. Should any student or family member have concerns, please talk to a trusted adult. Tutors and teaching staff are always willing to listen.

End of Term

A reminder that the last day of the summer term is Wednesday 19th July, which will be a Mufti Day in aid of charities chosen by the School Student Council. Students will be dismissed 11.40am. Next year’s dates were shared in the blog dated 26th June.

Inset Days for 2017-18

We are able to advise families that the Inset Days for the next academic year are:

Friday 6th October
Monday 27th November
Wednesday 3rd January
Friday 9th February
Friday 29th June

Words of the Week

Every two weeks, the school focuses on new words which broaden the vocabulary. This week…

The literacy word of the week is Novice
The numeracy word of the week is Bearing


Week commencing 3rd July 2017

Busy, busy, busy

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Over the last few weeks we have been showing many visitors around the school. They come from far and wide: Isle of Man, Israel and even Australia. We are increasingly finding that our overseas visitors usually visit us and two other English schools: School 21 in Stratford, East End of London, and XP School, Doncaster. Why do they come? Most are either considering or embarking on reimagining education and are keen to see and hear about what we have done. There is always the opportunity to tour the four small schools. They are always impressed, not only by the building and facilities within the school, but also by the atmosphere. They love talking to our students and they very quickly get that we are all about relationships.

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One of the areas that promote significant interest is our Student Led Conferences. Visitors are incredibly impressed by the video that we show them, but last week Ian Hewitt, an Australian headteacher, had the opportunity to sit in on a Year 7 girl doing her first SLC. He was blown away by the experience.

We are in the process of collating the responses of parents to the questionnaire – these will be in next week’s Blog - but virtually all of the comments we have read appear to be in agreement with Ian. One parent echoed many others in writing: “The student led conference was a positive way to have a parent evening. I enjoyed hearing my child explain what they had learned and identifying their own strengths and weaknesses. I was pleased the teacher was there to contribute and reiterate what my child was saying and guided them when they got stuck.” Many thanks to all for coming along to support your child’s SLC.

This week sees the start of a very busy period.

Year 6 Induction Day and Parents’ Information Evening on Wednesday 5 July

We are delighted to welcome our incoming Year 7 students this Wednesday morning at 9.00am for an introduction to new friends and teachers, and to life at high school. Information has been sent to all families involved. Later, we welcome parents and carers of these children for an evening of information, which provides a chance to meet other families with new students. This event starts at 6.00pm. We are sure that our new starters will settle quickly into school life and these events have proved a good way to build confidence and answer many questions they will have.

Celebration Evening and KS4 and 5 Art Exhibition on Thursday 6 July

Doors open at 6.00pm for this event, at which we shall mark the achievements of our students during the year. The evening will start at 6.30pm. Visitors are also welcome to view our Art Exhibition showing the best of our students’ work.

Sports Personality Evening on Monday 17 July

Doors open at 6.30pm and this event, marking the achievements of our many talented young sportsmen and women, will begin at 7.00pm.

EFC Graduation Evening and our festival event ‘Stanley in the Park’ on Tuesday 18 July

Our Year 8 students are all looking forward to presenting their achievements at the end of their two year Excellent Futures Curriculum programme. Presentations will be held over a two day period, leading up to the Graduation Evening on Tuesday 18th July. Doors open at 6.00pm and the event will begin at 6.30pm.

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Stanley in the Park will follow at 7.45pm and is expected to end at about 9.00pm.

Students have worked extremely hard and are justified in feeling very proud of themselves. We believe this is really something to celebrate and we are looking forward to sharing in their celebrations at this lovely annual summer event. We hope to see many parents and friends on the evening.

Borough Sports

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Congratulations to our team who excelled in the annual Borough Athletics Championship on Wednesday 21st June. We brought home a haul of medals in the 100m, 800m, 1500m, hurdles and 4 x 100m relay; the same on the field in javelin, discus, long jump and high jump.

Well done to our competitors, especially as this event took place on a very hot day. We were delighted to be placed 5th overall for the girls and 3rd place overall as a mixed school.

End of Term

The last day of the summer term is Wednesday 19th July, which will be a Mufti Day in aid of charities chosen by the School Student Council. Students will be dismissed 11.40am. We are all enjoying making plans for the break, and would like to draw parents’ attention to the information below, which was received by the school last week:

Safety when out and about

The Local Authority’s Safety Officer Steve Welding visits us regularly to update staff students and parents on E-safety matters. He has passed on a useful piece of information we think will be of interest to parents, particularly with the summer holidays approaching.

Snapchat has introduced Snapmap which allows other people to see where you are. There are security settings on Snapmap which limits who can see where you are. The link below to Childnet International explains the benefits and safety settings available.

www.childnet.com/blog/introducing-snap-maps-the-new-location-sharing-feature-in-snapchat

Summer School

During the holidays our Summer School for new Year 7 children will take place from Monday 21st to Wednesday 23rd August. This is a fun filled time to activities and events to help our youngest students to make new friends and feel at home. Parents will have received information and we hope that as many children as possible will be able to join in.

Exam Results Information

The results of the summer exams will be available on Results Days below.

A-Level

Thursday 17th August
Year 13 - A2 Results: 9:00am-11:00am
Year 12 - AS Results: 10:00am-12:00pm

GCSE

Thursday 24th August
GCSE Results: 10:00am-12:00pm

All results are the confidential property of the student concerned, and should be collected in person by each candidate. If students are unable to come on the day, the following options are available:

Either:

Provide the school in advance with a stamped addressed envelope (no bigger than A5 size please)

or

Authorise a family member or friend to collect results on the student’s behalf. Authorisation may be sent by email to Miss Beadle, Exams Officer (cbeadle10@suttonmail.org) or by letter signed by the student, and either provided in advance or brought along by the person collecting.

If the person collecting is not known to the school they must bring photo ID with them.

Results will not be issued over the telephone or by email.  Any remaining results not collected or posted will be posted once the new term begins.

We are confident our students have done their best, and wish all candidates good luck with the results.

Inset days for 2017-18

We are able to advise families that the Inset days for the next academic year are:

Friday 6th October
Monday 27th November
Wednesday 3rd January
Friday 9th February
Friday 29th June

Words of the Week

Every two weeks, the school focuses on new words which broaden the vocabulary. This week…

The literacy word of the week is Novice
The numeracy word of the week is Bearing