Headteacher’s Blog – 27th October 2023

As we approach the half term break, we’ve been reflecting on a productive half term.

The Woodland Trust Group have been active with Mr. Woodward reporting, ‘Having achieved Gold level in the Woodland Trust Green Tree Schools Award last year, students have been working on the next challenge this half-term as we try to work our way to achieving the platinum award. Our focus has been the new “Green in 15” Challenge which asks schools to do at least 5 out of 15 activities designed to connect young people with nature and make the school a more eco-friendly place. Students have been involved in delivering presentations about natural objects they find inspiring, identifying different species of trees on the school site (we have 20+ different species, it turns out…not bad for a small school!) and creating natural artwork, inspired by artists such as Andy Goldsworthy and Richard Shilling. Next half-term we’ll see the arrival of almost 200 saplings which we’ll be planting around the school site to help increase biodiversity, improve habitats and help improve the air quality for our students.



If you’ve got time for a half term read then you may be interested in the next two books that will be discussed at our Book Club after half term which is shadowing the Yoto Carnegie Medal Shortlist 2023. For students in Year 7, the recommendation is ‘Waiting for Murder’ by Fleur Hitchcock with the Book Club discussion taking place on Monday 20th November at 1p.m. in the Library. For students in Years 8 and above the recommendation is ‘I Must Betray You’ by Ruta Sepetys with the Book Club taking place at 1p.m. in the Library on Monday 6th of November.




Year 7 also have the opportunity of a Science lunchtime club after half term on Thursday lunchtimes. If they’re interested, then they should speak to Ms Camy.





To support students with their English Literature studies, on Tuesday night, Mrs. Macadam and Year 11 enjoyed a viewing of Macbeth showing the play as it was originally intended by Shakespeare.

In assemblies this week, Mrs. Godsell-Wright has been exploring personal characteristics that are valued in all aspects of life. Many students shared their ideas showing that our young people have a good understanding of how to make an active and positive contribution to their communities. The assembly ended with students being given Rewards certificates to recognise those who have consistently achieved Excellent or Good for their Behaviour for Learning, Attitude to Learning and Homework in their tracking at our first Progress Review Point. Many students were invited to the front of the Hall to collect their certificates. Well done to them all.

The Year 7 Geographers have shown remarkable resilience this week as they’ve battled with the elements to carry out their fieldwork in Boroughbridge. On Thursday rain caused an early return but Mr. Atkinson remarked on the positive attitude of students on their visit. Mrs. Gomersal and I are hoping for drier conditions for our groups today!

You will have received the letter earlier in the week with an update on the measurable progress that we’ve made including how Ofsted priorities are being addressed. We thank you for your support with this and we will be returning refreshed after half term to continue to drive forward on our identified priorities.

Upcoming events include the Year 10 Parent/Carer Evening on Wednesday 8th November with Year 11 Parent/Carer Evening on Wednesday 15th November. Please book your appointments online. Both events are virtual. We’re also looking forward to our first meeting with parents and carers who are interested in supporting the school with fundraising. This will be on Monday 20th November at 6p.m. All are welcome to attend.

Have a lovely weekend and half term!