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The value of reading

World Book Day yesterday gave the school the opportunity to have a collective focus for the day, and my thanks especially to Mrs Edwards and Mrs Wilson for organising many of the events. We had a number of events, but 3 key events ran across the day. Many staff were dressed as their favourite characters from books,...

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New beginnings

This time last year we were having the challenge of keeping the school open in snow, and this year we have experienced record temperatures for February, and it has felt positively spring like. Not unlike many schools, we suffer from a lack of indoor space at social times (not the very wet days, when we...

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The role of Social Media?

The government minister, Nick Gibb, made a speech last weekend suggesting that mobile phones should be banned from schools, and then the Head of Instagram has committed to removing self-harm images from its platforms, and additionally Public Health England issued parental guidance about mobile phones. (I haven’t read the details but it was very much...

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Building Our Community

One of the slightly sad aspects of expansion is that we never get to have the full school together in one place, and hence why we often vary the Monday assembly arrangements. This Monday, it was the entirety of Years 7-10. I don’t spend much time highlighting the assembly messages in the blog, but I...

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The key to leading a school?

This Tuesday, Mr Suttenwood and I visited Great Yarmouth Charter Academy which has attracted a large amount of publicity for its various approaches to education over the last 18 months. The school is partly modelled on the Michaela Community School in Brent. The Headteacher, Barry Smith had been Deputy Head previously, and has transposed some...

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Important conversations

The staff training today has provided colleagues from across the Trust an opportunity to reflect on their practices, and in particularly our development of relationships with students. Dr Bill Rogers is a really engaging facilitator, and the staff appreciated the opportunity. It is rare that we have those opportunities to come together and genuinely discuss...

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Reflection, Relaxation, Revolution and a Reminder

There is something nice about the Christmas holiday; this is not because of any of my personal beliefs about the religious significance of the time of year, but because it genuinely feels like the one time in the modern world that the vast majority of us slow down as a society (I will quickly add...

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No freeze on community events

I was showing a potential interview candidate around on Tuesday, who had clearly done their research well, and he expressed surprise that we still did the Senior Citizens Christmas Party. I was slightly surprised, and then he quickly clarified that he liked the idea, but was upset that so many schools had dispensed of these...

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Weighing Out The Ingredients of Success

As I was queueing past an accident this morning, it had that sobering effect of bringing me back down to earth after a really exciting day yesterday, albeit it gave me a bonus, extra period of time to contemplate the day ahead. Yesterday was one of those days that you want to capture to show...

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The Bridge of Dreams?

There are so many moments in every hour, day, and week when you are dealing with adolescents, but some allow you that moment of reflection yourself. I was doing one of our regular checks at the ‘White Shops’ on Thursday, and I found myself standing in the rain talking to the students; partly about expectations...