Dear Parents and carers,
This new academic year seems to be speeding past, and a reminder that next week is the final week of the half term, and we will break up at 3pm on Friday 22nd October 2021. I have also included a full list of term dates, teacher professional development days and parents evenings below, which I hope will be helpful in planning the year with reasonable confidence, although it is of course impossible to rule out any changes due to national or local circumstances.
As you will see from the details below, it has again been an incredibly busy and productive week. We are continuing to see excellent levels of behaviour, learning and progress now that we are able to fully deliver the Wollaston Curriculum from faculty bases, with specialist resources and with the full programme of lessons and extra-curricular activity.
Sixth Form Open Evening
We are delighted to welcome Year 11 students to our Sixth Form Open Evening on the 4th November 2021. We are incredibly proud of our large and successful Post 16 provision, which offers a wide and inspiring choice of A level and vocational qualifications. This evening is always very well attended by both Wollaston Year 11 students and parents as well as those from other local schools who join our Sixth Form as external applicants.
To book your place, please click HERE and we look forward to showcasing the inspiring range of courses on offer, and the exceptional support provided at Wollaston’s Sixth Form. For any questions or enquiries please contact Mr Tony Mills, Assistant Headteacher and Head of Sixth Form MillsT@wollaston-school.net
Personal Development Day
Thank you to students and staff in all year groups for an excellent Personal Development Day. A range of learning activities were on offer and students engaged fully throughout the day. We know that parents and carers are always keen to learn of the content covered during personal development days, and we will provide a full review for each year group in next weeks letter.
We continue to see high levels of absence due to positive coronavirus tests, in addition to high levels of non-covid illness. This is affecting both students and staff, and I would like to pay tribute to our entire school community for ensuring that this has not impacted on the quality of education or learning. We have a resilient and positive approach to challenge, and it is testament to all concerned that we are operating so effectively, despite the current high absence rates.
We continue to liaise carefully with colleagues from Public Health, who also visited this week to review our caseload and current control measures. Public Health confirmed that we are implementing all recommended measures, and that we continue to promote the following to students, staff and parents.
- Regular Lateral Flow Testing (Twice weekly on Wednesday and Sunday evenings). However, please note you should not test within 90 days of a previous positive test result (either LFT or PCR. )
- Face coverings are recommended on school transport and for indoor communal areas of the school site.
- Hand hygiene remains important and hands should be washed or sanitised regularly.
We are also starting to use our newly arrived Co2 monitors to ensure that ventilation remains adequate and of course parents should now have received details of the 12-15 vaccination programme from the NHS.
We are continuing to update colleagues in Public Health on a daily basis regarding case numbers. If cases follow the trajectory that they have in other secondary schools (which in some areas are two weeks ahead of us) we should see a decline in cases over the half term break.
Year 10 Success at GCSE Evening
Please note, the re-arranged date for this evening is Thursday 18th November 2021. We are honouring all Eventbrite bookings for the previously advertised date, but there are additional spaces available. Please follow the link and book HERE
Community Policing Visit
Wednesday saw a team of Police officers attend Wollaston School as part of the Northamptonshire Police launch of their “100 Days of Knife Crime Action”. The event was organized to raise awareness of knife crime within the county and as an exercise to educate students about the dangers of knife crime and the risks attached to carrying or being found carrying a knife.
Stationed in the science playground with knife wands, the officers were greeted by some enthusiastic and curious volunteers who queued to be ‘swept’ with the wands whilst others spoke to Police officers about why they were in school. Despite not all students having the opportunity to meet with the officers, news of their presence soon filtered through to other members of the school community who showed an interest in being involved in any further visits. I have already requested that the team of officers return to do some follow up work later in the year and we will keep parents and students abreast of when this will occur.
Further information regarding the project can be found in the accompanying attachments from the Northamptonshire Police.
Public Servcies Visit from the Army
Our Sixth Form Public Services course remains a popular and unique choice for Post 16 study, with many former students going on to enjoy careers in the fire service, police service and other associated pathways, in addition to those who have used the qualification to pursue less directly related university courses and careers. Mr Bodicoat commented “We were pleased to welcome the Army Outreach team on Wednesday 13th October. This was a great action-packed outreach day. Students participated in several team building activities in small groups. During this time students also had the opportunity to ask a lot of questions about a career in the Army. The day finished with 6th form and Year 10 students listening to a talk about life in the Armed services. The whole day was incredibly successful, and the students enjoyed it and got a huge amount from the visit”.
On the conclusion of the visit, I spoke to the team from the army who led the event – and they were quick to commend our students and our school for our strong sense of personal discipline, respect, resilience and positivity. It is always rewarding to see Wollaston viewed through the eyes of visitors, particularly those who have visited many other schools, and it is gratifying to note the high esteem in which our student and school community is held. Congratulations to all concerned.
Many congratulations to Daniel Robbins in Year 10, who continues to achieve great results racing for the Schumacher team in a variety of events. Daniel now competes in both junior and adult competitions. He has recently secured a 7th place finish in the 1/10 size National Modified Championship, competing against world and national champions – a great achievement for his first year of racing in this class! Daniel now moves on to the indoor racing circuit over the winter and will be racing in Italy over the half term break in the GT12 European championships.
We are always keen to celebrate the achievements of our students and if you have any news you would like us to share, please contact Ms Fitzhugh FitzhughJ@wollaston-school.net
Term dates and Forthcoming Events
Term dates and teacher training days
Friday 22nd October – School closes for half term
Monday 1st November– School reopens
Friday 26th November – Teacher training day – school closed to students
Monday 29th November – Teacher training day – school closed to students
Friday 17th December – School closes for Christmas
Wednesday 5th January – School reopens
Friday 11th February – School closes for half term
Monday 21st February – School reopens
Friday 1st April – School closes for Easter
Tuesday 19th April – School reopens
Monday 2nd May – Bank Holiday
Friday 27th May – School closes for half term
Monday 6th June – School opens
Thursday 20th July – School closes for summer
Thursday 21st October – Year 11
Thursday 11th November – Year 10
Thursday 9th December – Year 13
Thursday 13th January – Year 7
Thursday 10th February – Year 8
Thursday 3rd March – Year 9
Thursday 21st April – Year 12
Other Events : Autumn Term
Thursday 4th November – 6th Form Open Evening
Thursday 16th November – Sixth Form Presentation Evening
Thursday 18th November – Success at GCSE Evening
Thursday 25th November – Year 11 Celebration Event
As always, thank you for your continued support. Please do get in touch if there is any aspect of our provision which you would like to discuss.
Have a wonderful weekend!
Mr James Birkett