Head’s Newsletter -19th April 2024

Dear parents and carers

It has been a hugely busy and successful week in the world of Wollaston School- students have returned from the Easter break with a great attitude. I have been lucky enough to see almost all year groups this week in assembly. Two terms in, I felt it to be a timely reminder to all students about the importance of our values of kindness, community and ambition. I linked these values to the importance of legacy and the power of our actions and words on the people around us and how it is our joint responsibility to ensure that not only does Wollaston grow and becomes stronger but that our behaviour and attitude, particularly towards each other, determines our environment. I have challenged all students in the spirit of the All-Blacks tradition to ‘leave the jersey in a better place’ to ensure that their time at Wollaston helps them to create lifelong memories and friendships and of course helps them to achieve successful outcomes, but also that their active contribution in school has a positive impact on those around them. I look forward to seeing all students working hard and enjoying school in the term ahead.

We have also had a very successful PE trip to watch the netball in London, Year 10 and 12 mocks commencing and final exams starting for some students in Years 11 and 13. Next week we look forward to our gold Duke of Edinburgh students going out on a practice expedition and of course the evening all Year 9s have been waiting for…options evening!

Staffing News

We have welcomed Miss Middleton into the English department this week and Mr Meaghan to the PE department in the vital role of PE Technician- we wish both great success in their careers at Wollaston. Due to the timing of Easter this year and the idiosyncrasies of teacher contracts we will also have some new starters arriving from the 29th April as you may be aware from your children (if it has affected them) that we have temporary staff in geography and science. The recruitment landscape has been very difficult in education for a number of years now, however I am pleased to say that our recent recruitment campaign has been very successful, and we have recruited some outstanding practitioners some of whom will start this term and some who will arrive in September!

Mr Rees has officially taken on the role of Head of Year 7 and he is very excited to be taking on the 7s and leading them through their Wollaston school journey.


Careers News

Mr Myers writes: ‘It is a real pleasure to be able to advertise a variety of careers opportunities and really pleasing when students and parents/ guardians find a way to access these. A recent example is Ben Cowap of 11 HBR who managed to complete a 10 week catering experience in his own time organised by Moulton College with help from the catering staff from Northampton Saints Rugby Club. Ben enjoys the food technology at school stating that ‘ it is interesting to learn about the science behind food preparation and learning about where differing foods come from.’ This led him to pursue the Moulton College experience which he says was ‘ Interesting , fun and good to learn about new techniques of cooking ‘. This programme involved preparing meals by using a wide range of techniques and working with the chefs from Northampton Saints to prepare the meals.

The last session involved preparing a 5-course meal for parents and school staff at Franklins Gardens , home of Northampton Saints Rugby Club. Well done to Ben for finding the time to take part in this wonderful experience and many thanks to colleagues at Moulton College and Northampton Saints.

Finally, a polite reminder to parents/ guardians of students in Year 11 and year 13 that I am available every Thursday lunch time for queries regarding students’ further destinations after the end of this academic year.’

Ben Cowap Year 11 writes: ‘I recently completed a chef’s academy where I attended every week for 10 weeks, learning new cooking skills and how to cook certain foods. These included greens mac & cheese, pizza, chocolate fondant cake, pork tenderloin and a chicken katsu burger and a whole lot more dishes. I thoroughly enjoyed this experience, and it has definitely confirmed for me that becoming a chef is something I would like to do in the future. On the last week we produced a 5-course meal for our parents and teachers – which Miss Ayres and Mrs Lee attended.’

Performing Arts at Wollaston
Mrs Paltridge and Mr Wight writes: ‘On Thursday 18th April, The Wollaston School Senior Theatre Company attended the National Theatre Connections Festival at the The Royal and Derngate Theatre in Northampton.

18 students participated in a creative AI workshop exploring the potential use and application of AI tools as part of the theatrical research and development processes.

The next part of the day saw them rehearsing and preparing for their own performance on the ‘Royal’ stage before performing to a public audience. The performance showcased our students’ fantastic storytelling abilities and was very well received by the audience. Two of our students collaborated with professional technicians to further enhance the piece through sound and lighting, both demonstrating composure under pressure, creative decision making and confidence in a professional setting. Our actors delivered their best work to date discovering new moments in the material as they bought it to life on the professional stage.

Following a short break, the pupils were back into a creative practical workshop aimed at honing their collaboration, devising and imaginative skills.

We were also fortunate enough to watch 2 other plays that had been written for the festival, our students were warm, encouraging and curious audience members showing a great level of support at all times.

The Drama department are incredibly proud of the way our students conducted themselves throughout the day, excellent ambassadors for Wollaston School!’

Key Dates for the Diary
Thursday 25th April-Year 9 Options Evening

Best wishes for the week ahead.

Simon Anderson