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Headteacher's Blog 9th July 2021

As we move towards the end of term, it has been quite a tricky week for us all in school. Unfortunately, the impact of the pandemic can still be clearly seen in and around Plymouth and over the last couple of days we have had to deal with positive tests and the implications of them across four different year groups. I cannot thank parents enough for the way that they continue to respond to the phone calls informing them that their son or daughter has to be isolated. We are in extraordinary times but in moments like these the support of the parent body and the wider community makes things easier than they might otherwise be.

Other than Covid, it has been another really positive week in school. We had a visit from our School Improvement Partner, Richard Steward who is a recently retired headteacher from the Woodroffe School in Dorset. He comes in to work with staff and provides a clinical and objective view of the school. He was very positive after his visit this week about the role of our Middle Leaders. We are asking a lot of our Heads of Department at the moment so it was pleasing to get a positive endorsement of their work from someone outside the school.

In the last few weeks, students in Years 8, 9, 10 and 12 have been focusing on their futures as part of our careers education programme.  Year 10 students have started to receive their 1-1 careers meetings with an advisor from CSW allowing them to explore all post 16 options for education and training in Plymouth. Every student is emailed an action plan detailing the main points of their meeting which they can share with parents/carers. 

All Year 9 students participated in an Introduction to University and Apprenticeship workshop with Next Steps South West whilst Year 8 students were introduced to our Careers Advisor from CSW as part of a session on Unifrog, our online careers platform for all year groups, enabling them to begin to consider their GCSE option choices for 2022. Similarly, Year 12 students have been exploring their post 18 options by beginning their university applications including higher and degree apprenticeships. 

It is early days yet but we are starting to do some work on a really exciting wider curriculum project for our students for September. Our aim is to extend the school day for as many of our students as possible on at least one day a week. We are aiming to put a programme together on the back of last week's successful Sports days which extends the opportunities for our students beyond the usual practical areas such as Sport, Music, Dance and Drama. We are optimistic that we will be able to put on a wide range of activities from which the students will be able to choose.

This week has seen a fabulous Dance production which I'm sure many of you will have been able to access virtually. I would like to extend a massive thank you to Miss Price for putting this on and for all the students who have been involved. We are all looking forward to a time when we can put on these performances to a live audience.

Enjoy your weekend and if you happen to be watching the football on Sunday, look out for our very own Mr Reynolds who is lucky enough to have tickets for the final for himself and his Mum!

Very best wishes,

Martin Brook, Headteacher