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Undefeated Spirit

It would be remiss of me not to start this week’s blog with a moment of reflection around the events on our doorstep on Wednesday. Often in schools, you are slightly cocooned during the day, and unless someone tells you about events in the outside world it is easy to be lost in the here...

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Steaming Ahead

As we are moving to a three year GCSE in September, this week has seen the deadline for both year 9 and year 8 to choose their options for their GCSEs. This is a time for our students to start, if they haven’t already, to think seriously about their futures and I have been very...

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Skating Lessons

The last two weekends I have been trying to do teach my youngest son to roller skate because his best friend got a set of skates for his 7th birthday, but there are a number of problems with this learning process. The first issue was that I hadn’t skated for nearly 30 years, so I suddenly...

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Signatures and Cyndi Lauper

Personally, this week, my time has been absorbed with huge numbers of legal documents and meetings with planners. I will be the first to admit that sometimes I find that aspect of the job hardest because it pulls me away from the students and being around classrooms and corridors, but it is very necessary for the...

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Rich Tapestry

It was a slightly surreal feeling in school before half term with both year 10 on work experience and year 11 on their PPEs, and it has felt more normal to be back to full capacity this week. It has been fascinating talking to Year 10 students about their experiences on work experience, and in...

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Bad Hair Day

I appreciate this is a problem I have to worry about less about every year, but it was lovely to feel the lower part of the school coming together for such a good cause today. As the students have been made aware in more detail, this campaign had a personal element for one of our...

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Decisions, Dilemmas and Donations

I would like to start this week by thanking parents and students (and, of course, staff) for Tuesday evening. It was a slightly surreal atmosphere having 2 year groups going through two different processes, but obviously this is a one year transition model. The conversations with parents were insightful but more importantly really supportive of...

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Reflecting on Personal Ambitions

I would like to start this week by offering all the Year 10 students that are about to embark on work experience all my very best; for a while work experience has been under pressure in schools, but I believe that a well sourced work experience can really reveal a huge amount about the world of...

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Thinking about the Future

Tuesday this week saw all of our Year 8 and 9 cohorts have presentations about university options and choices, and helped to start thinking about their futures. I don’t believe that university is the right option for every child, but I do believe that every student should consider their futures carefully and consider the qualifications...

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Expect the Unexpected

There is nothing quite like rushing back from a meeting in Upminster to meet a consultant about academisation, ahead of Year 9 parents evening, through a sudden snow storm, only to be told by my PA that a Year 11 student wanted to see me for a final check of Controlled Assessment plan – perhaps...