2015.11.27: Letter from the Headteacher
Dear Parents and Carers,
We have enjoyed another busy week of learning and have welcomed a number of external visitors into the school to evaluate how we are progressing. The consensus is promising and of particular note is the improved enthusiasm and determination of all staff and pupils to build on our existing strengths and to ensure high levels of pupil achievement.
Teaching and Learning
As part of our continuing drive to improve academic standards we are focused on ensuring the highest quality of teaching and learning in every lesson. All term, staff have been working on the GVC Good Learning Guide. This is taken from the very best practice at the school and will be our charter for ensuring that in every lesson excellence is standard. We will be doing some work with pupils on the Good Learning Guide in the next two weeks as the actions are for both children and teachers. I will publish the final version to parents at the end of this term and we will start the Spring term with a copy on display in every classroom. As part of this we are also trialling a “no hands up” policy in some lessons. The aim here is to ensure that every child plays an active part in every lesson. This strategy will also allow teachers to target specific questions at specific pupils ensuring appropriate support and challenge. We will be evaluating the use of this strategy in the coming weeks and will invite pupils to tell us what difference they feel it makes to their learning.
Mr Birkett is Proud of My Work
One of the potential drawbacks of being a headteacher is in becoming overloaded with the Leadership of the school and losing sight of what is truly important. The quality of pupils’ learning. To this end I am inviting staff to nominate individual pieces of work to be displayed in my office for one week under the heading “Mr Birkett is Proud of my Work”. Pupils selected will be shown their work on display and will receive a letter congratulating them on their achievement. I will also include a picture of the notice board on the website each week. Work will be accepted from all abilities in all subjects, the aim is to celebrate progress and learning.
Peace memorial sculpture at GVC
Our value this month is peace. In light of recent events we decided that we would create a memorial sculpture using the symbol of peace. Every student has written a message on their dove. The installation will be up in the front entrance for the rest of the term to remind us that we can hope for a peaceful world in our future.
Every Child a Writer: Crime Investigation day
On Tuesday 17th November the pupils came into school to discover that our Ace Zone had been turned into the offices of Davies and Sons and a crime had taken place. With inquisitive minds they headed to the hall to discover what the day had in store for them. Staff were dressed as both suspects and police officers ready for our ECAW day to begin.
A robbery had taken place and through investigation work, specialist police teams and problem-solving; the case was narrowed down to three suspects. A court scene followed, ending with the jury deciding on who was guilty and what their sentencing was to be.
Pupils worked in vertical classes on interview techniques; crime scene investigation; finger print analysis and understanding of the law as well as many other police based activities.
The day was a huge success and pupils are now transferring their enthusiasm from the day into a police report in their English lessons.
Gym Club will be on the following dates with a preference of year groups, but if you cannot attend the allocated sessions you may come to the alternative session that week as long as Mrs Phillips beforehand.
· Thursday 19th Nov: All Years
· Wednesday 25th Nov: Years 7 & 8
· Thursday 26th Nov: Years 5 & 6
· Thursday 3rd Dec: Years 5 & 6
· Friday 4th Dec: Years 7 & 8
· Wednesday 9th Dec: All Years
· Friday 11th Dec: All Years
Friday 20th November will be the final Mini Club for this term. The school premises are booked for other events on Fridays for the rest of this term. We will start back on Friday 8th January.