On October 13th we held a very successful and busy open evening at the Olney Campus - it was standing room only in the hall and we had to delay the start of the talk to enable us to find a few more chairs. A week later, at our Newport Pagnell campus, we held a similar evening. At both locations the number of parents attending was considerably up on last year.
The students at both campuses did us proud by taking prospective parents round. Many also took part in classroom based activities. I was very surprised to see so many parents from across the border into Northamptonshire and outside our Newport Pagnell catchment area but we certainly welcome them and look forward to receiving their applications.
In the last week of the first half term I chaired a session with the newly elected parliament at Newport Pagnell. The group has chosen to focus on two areas this term - the upper school canteen and learning. At Olney, Mr Ridout is chairing the parliament and the students will be focusing on learning and the school community. Student Voice is something I am very keen to develop further and we, as teachers, can learn much from student input. Watch this space for further development in this exciting area.
On 20th October some of our middle leaders attended training at John Lewis. I am particularly grateful to the personnel department for giving up their time to plan and deliver the training. It was excellent. John Lewis are also sponsoring our awards evening in November along with many other local firms and I shall report back to you on the event.
Finally, I am also pleased to report that a parent of the school has successfully bid for additional funding. We shall use the money to buy resources for our new Eco Centre; the school thanks E.On UK for their support.
Letters have been sent (via registers) to the parents of all Year 7 students advising ParentPay log-in details.
ParentPay is the school online payment system that allows you to make secure online payments by credit and debit card. This can be used for payments to a student's cashless catering account as well as for PE kit orders, school trips, exam fees and other general payments.
Please follow the links below for more details:
The Year 11 Progress and Achievement Evening held last week was a great opportunity to celebrate student effort and achievement. Awards were given to students who had surpassed their target grades in the core subjects of English, Maths and Science and to those who had already achieved at least 3 A/A*s in their modules. I believe it is important to reward both effort and achievement. I thought the soloists who provided the musical entertainment were outstanding: Beth Irish played the piano beautifully, Caroline Kunft was delightful and Joseph Garside was incredible on the electric guitar. Pictures of the evening for you to download are available below.
The Year 10 Target Evening held last Wednesday at both campuses was a very important evening for both parents and students. Each child was given a personalised pack of information which included the controlled assessment dates, target grades and Year 10 exam information. If you missed the evening you can find the powerpoint and details of all the controlled assessment dates via the links below.
I enjoyed some lovely encounters with parents last week, praising our firm stand on uniform and congratulating us on the high level of pastoral care their child had received - lovely comments thank you. This week we are having a push on punctuality - any child who arrives at school after 8.45 am, without good reason, will be placed in a lunchtime detention. Only a small number of children will be affected by this ‘push’ but lateness is a bad habit to develop, I am sure you agree.
Lastly, I am pleased to report that the school are working in partnership with John Lewis. A training session for some of our middle managers will take place at the MK store after half term and a senior manager from John Lewis will be speaking at our A level Awards Evening in November. I very much admire the way in which the staff at John Lewis work together and the ethos and value system which pervades throughout the store. I am grateful for the time they have already given to us.Sue CarbertHeadteacher
Today, 21st September, all of our students will receive information regarding our enrichment programme which starts after half term. On a Wednesday afternoon in the second half of each term, students will be able to participate in a wide range of activities, both on and off site, which will enable them to develop their skills and talents away from the classroom. We have a wide range of activities on offer with something for everyone including sport, arts and crafts and music.
I have been overwhelmed by the response from the staff when asked what courses they would like to offer students. Suggestions ranged from Clay Pigeon Shooting to learning to knit! Everyone is very excited about working with students in a different setting and having the opportunity to share their hobbies or interests outside of their subject areas.
As we have over 2000 students who will be choosing which course they would like to do, we have set up a facility to opt online. Each student has been given a unique ID number; follow the link below to go to the enrichment programme page where you will be asked to enter your three choices in order of preference. The student information given out this afternoon also includes a reply slip if you are unable to access the internet.
Alongside our revised PSHE programme, the Enrichment sessions represent a new approach to wider development of the young people in our school.
Nicola WheatlandAssistant Headteacher
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