Year 8 Bulletin – November 2015

The ‘Thought for the Week’ themes for this month are as follows:

  • Week beginning 2nd November – Prizes
  • Week beginning 9th November – Remembrance/ National Recycle Week
  • Week beginning 16th November – Anti-Bullying Week
  • Week beginning 23rd November – Philosophy: World Philosophy Day (19th)
  • Week beginning 30th November – World Aids Day (1st)

Upcoming important dates for Year 8 include:

  • Friday 27th November – Full reports issued
  • Tuesday 1st December – Governors Annual Report to Parents
  • Thursday 3rd December –Parents’ Consultation Evening

The first half-term was a busy but highly prosperous one. I hope the half-term break was a good one for you and I am sure that the students are all feeling refreshed and ready for an exhilarating and ultimately festive half-term.

Behaviour

Year 8 students continue to display a range of exceptional qualities and the feedback from staff across all subjects is very pleasing. Many individuals are applying themselves to a fantastic degree within lessons and there are countless members of the year group who consistently offer a helping hand to staff and their peers.

In recognition of such invaluable qualities, we will soon be drawing the Key Stage 3 Olympic Reward cards at random and the winning students will receive a gift. As a reminder, the values are:

  • Respect
  • Excellence
  • Friendship
  • Determination
  • Inspiration
  • Courage
  • Equality

Students can be entered in to the draw for one or more of these Olympic/Paralympic values if they display any of them within lesson time or during any extra-curricular involvement. The results of the draw will soon be communicated.

Last month, all students were informed that rough play will not be tolerated during break times and lunch times and there have been noticeable improvements in conduct as a result. All students will soon be advised of the newly formed break time and lunchtime code which will provide clear guidelines on what is expected of them on school premises during their free time.

Learning

At the end of this month, on Friday 27th November, the Year 8 full reports will be sent to all parents/guardians. This report will provide you with extended written details of your child’s progress across all of their subjects and their Form Tutor will also construct a personal report. Following on from this, the Year 8 Parents’ Consultation Evening will take place on Thursday 3rd December. The events have been structured in this way to enable you to discuss any concerns or general queries with specific subject staff following on from the outcome of the reports. However, if you have any general questions or, if you would simply like to discuss your child’s progress, please do not hesitate to contact me. If I am teaching I will always endeavour to get back to you as soon as I possibly can.

Once the reports have been published, the Year 8 Form Tutors will take each student through an Assertive Mentoring process. This helps your son/daughter to identify their overall strengths and areas for development before specific and time-scaled targets are set in collaboration with their Form Tutor. Following the agreed timescale, each student will then undergo a review to determine whether they have successful in working towards their targets. This process will take a considerable number of weeks as it will be run specifically through the registration period in the mornings. Assertive Mentoring was run across the school last year and it proved to be incredibly beneficial for students of all ages.

You may continue to support your son/daughter with their learning at home by checking Show My Homework, looking through their planner, promoting punctual routines and communicating with school staff.

Attendance

Our attendance remains a high point of our successes and it results from the efforts of the students themselves, you at home and their Form Tutors. Many thanks to you all for your continued efforts. The 100% Attendance Award continues and the students are clearly still enjoying the opportunity of being able to skip the dinner queue with a friend of their choice.

As a reminder, if you know your child is going to be absent from school (e.g. due to illness) please contact the general office and go through to the attendance line. It is always essential that we are given a valid reason for any absence; otherwise your son/daughter may be marked with an unauthorised absence which will be displayed on their reports.

If your child is late to school on any occasion, whether it is due to a medical appointment or an unavoidable circumstance, they must sign in at reception before attending their lessons. Similarly, if they are leaving school early for any reason that we have been informed of, then they must sign out at reception. However, to leave school all students must be collected from the reception area by their registered parent/guardian on our system. If someone else is to collect them we must be informed of the name/details of this person. As you will appreciate, your child’s safety is always our priority.

Before students are permitted to leave school with illness, they are seen by the office staff (and/or First Aid staff) before being sent to me. This arrangement allows us to effectively monitor all students. It would be very much appreciated if you could continue to present an enthusiastic approach towards attendance from home.

Extra-curricular activities & more

The following performance based clubs/rehearsals are currently taking place:

  • Monday lunchtime 1:30 – 2 p.m – Musical Theatre Club
  • Monday 3:30-5 p.m – Rock Challenge rehearsals
  • Tuesday 3:30 – 5 p.m. – School Play rehearsals
  • Thursday lunchtime 1:30 – 2 p.m. – Whole school choir
  • Friday lunchtime 1:30 – 2 p.m. – Whole school choir

The Art, Design & Technology Club continues to run 1:30-2:00 p.m. every Monday lunch time and our sports clubs all continue to run. The Sports Hall and sporting facilities are consistently in use during break times and lunchtimes, with our students engaging in a vast range of extra-curricular activities and fixtures. Our sports teams are going from strength to strength, with students of all abilities demonstrating commitment and the want to improve. More information may be found on the school website.

Year 8 students also have the opportunity to learn Latin. The lessons run every Wednesday morning at 8:35 a.m. If your son/daughter is interested in this club they must see a member of the languages department.

Our other extra-curricular clubs include: Eco Club, School Council, Homework Club, ICT Club and Film Club. More information can be obtained from the specific departments if your son/daughter demonstrates any interest. These clubs are often promoted through registration time and through assemblies.

I look forward to seeing many of you over the forthcoming month. As always, if you wish to speak to me at any time please contact me directly.

Yours sincerely,

Miss C Jones – Year 8 Progress Leader