Dear Parents and carers,
We are enjoying the late flourish of good weather and hope that students and families are able to make the most of it this weekend. Our large school field remains in full use at break and lunchtimes, and we will keep this open for as long as the weather allows as we know that our students enjoy the additional space to enjoy social times with friends.
We are also pleased to report that since the start of the academic year in September, and the return to specialist faculty teaching, we are seeing some excellent behaviour for learning from students in all year groups. Staff are positive about how our students are approaching their studies and we are delighted that as an entire school community, we are relishing the return to a more normal Wollaston, after the bubble system. One slightly emerging area in recent weeks is in terms of homework completion, and we would be grateful if you could ensure that students have some dedicated time to complete all homework tasks during the week. All homework is set on Go4schools and you are having difficulty accessing this service please contact WhiteAn@wollaston-school.net
Coronavirus Update: Face Coverings
Thank you for your support with the newly introduced control measures, particularly in regard to face coverings. Most students adhere to the requirements independently, but it is also fair to say that we are having to be very active with reminders. This is fairly understandable, particularly as these restrictions no longer apply in the same way outside of school and I do think many are out of the habit of wearing face coverings. Nevertheless, with cases so high and with over 1500 individuals in a fairly concentrated space, we do want to ensure that the public health recommendation is complied with and ensure that all members of our school community exercise their individual responsibility.
We will be ensuring that all staff leave a minute at the end of each lesson, prior to dismissal, to give students time to out on face coverings before moving to the next lesson, as well as having staff placed in corridors to monitor and remind students. We would also be grateful for your support as parents and carers, in promoting and encouraging this sense of individual responsibility, including on school transport for those who use the bus. Wearing face coverings is not a disciplinary issue (unlike last year, they are recommended by Public Health, rather than mandatory by law) however, we do think that wearing them in communal areas is simply the right thing to do.
Finally a reminder that exemptions are available (with accompanying lanyards and cards which students can wear if they choose to). Please contact FitzhughJ@wollaston-school.net if you would like you child’s name added to the exemption list.
Thank you again for your support.
The Year 9 and Year 11 netball teams enjoyed great success in their fixtures in their fixtures against Wrenn School and Rushden Academy. Both teams secured comprehensive victories in both of their fixtures and we have incredibly talented teams in both Year groups.
Congratulations to the Year 9 team of: Libby, Isla, Abigail,Lily, Betsy, Aloise, Jess and Freyja, and to the Year 11 team of Lola, Evie, Emily, Freya, Mackenzie and guest star Feyja from Year 9 who also played for the Year 11 team!
We look forward to hearing of future successes and thanks also to Miss Cattell, Miss Brown and Mr Roberts for their support with the fixtures.
Free School Meal Vouchers
We are pleased to again be supporting families with the provision of free school meal vouchers during the half term break. We have sent information to all eligible families, but if you would like more information or require assistance in accessing the vouchers, please contact FrancisS@wollaston-school.net or by telephone on 01933 665501 and ask for Sara Francis.
Mr Myers, our excellent careers lead is available for drop in sessions every Thursday lunchtime in the library. We have a wealth of experience and expertise in guiding students towards their chosen career paths and are delighted that almost without exception, students from Wollaston School leave here with the qualifications and personal skills to secure their next steps in education or employment. This is vital indicator of our mission to secure the best outcomes possible for every student.
In addition to the drop in sessions, we also host careers events on specific topics. On Thursday next week, we will welcome back a recent former Wollaston student who will discuss their career in Accountancy and how their education prepared them for success. This is largely aimed at students in Years 11 -13, but other age groups are welcome if this particularly appeals. This event will take place in the library at lunchtime on the 14th October.
Safety and Conduct before and after school in our local communities.
We are proud of the conduct of our students within school and continue to promote a sense of personal and collective responsibility for behaving in ways which are respectful safe and kind. We also trust that this extends beyond our school gates and into our local communities. Our aim would be that every student who attends our school and wears our uniform behaves as they would at school, within their local community. We have had two specific issues raised by local residents. The first is regarding road safety and crossing roads without the necessary care and attention. The second is around anti-social behaviour when waiting for, or after disembarking from the school bus. Whilst we do of course investigate specific incidents, we are unable to supervise students when in their local communities. We would be grateful if as parents and carers, you could re-enforce the importance of good road safety as well as mature and sensible conduct whilst on the journey to and from school.
Community Police Event
We are always pleased to support our community Police team in raising awareness of current issues and how they are responding to crime.
On the morning of Wednesday 13th October, Northamptonshire police will be visiting Wollaston School, to outline the dangers of knife crime, which has been a grave concern within the country. They will be on hand to talk to our students, provide information and to voice concerns anonymously and will be demonstrating some of the equipment that they use to screen for weapons. This event will take place in the school playground before school.
Year 7 Assessments
Our new Year 7 students will have a series of assessments next week, which are designed to provide an indication of current strengths and future potential of both individuals and our Year 7 cohort generally. Absolutely no preparation is required, they are not tests on content learnt this year, but are more general diagnostic aptitude tests which will be useful to staff in ensuring that every student is supported to fulfil their potential.
Year 10 Success at GCSE Evening
Thursday 14th October is our Success at GCSE Evening for Year 10 parents. You are able to sign up to this event using Eventbrite at any time up until 3pm on Wednesday 13th. Due to the size of our classrooms however, we are limited to only 120 spaces and so please sign up early if you intend to come. This event is for parents/carers only and will be an opportunity to hear from the pastoral team, the school nurse as well as the Heads of Faculty from English, maths and science about the best ways to support your child in achieving success in their GCSEs. We look forward to seeing you there. Tickets can be booked HERE
World Mental Health Day
At Wollaston School we’re supporting student wellbeing this World Mental Health Day, which takes place on the 10th October. In the week commencing 11th October students will be looking at different types of self-care and reflecting on what works for them. Activities include finding things you have in common with others, stretching and breathing exercises, learning something new and carrying out acts of kindness. We’re encouraging students to continue to try different activities at home – why not try some as a family?
For more tips and information about looking after your child’s mental health go to www.nhs.uk/every-mind-matters/supporting-others/childrens-mental-health/
As a parent or carer, looking after your own wellbeing is also important and Every Mind Matters enables you to get tailored wellbeing support. Use the Mind Plan to see what works for you: https://www.nhs.uk/every-mind-matters/mental-wellbeing-tips/your-mind-plan-quiz/
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