Headteacher’s Blog – 8th March 2024

It’s been reading all the way this week to mark World Book Day. A book inspired Bake-Off enabled students to use the medium of cake to show remarkable creativity with winner Zander (Y8) representing ‘Fantastic Mr. Fox’ by Roald Dahl, and runners up Freya (Y8) representing Ghostbusters by John Sazaklis and Freya (Y9) representing ‘A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder’ by Holly Jackson. They were then put to a very good cause with students buying a delicious slice with funds raised going to the Read for Good charity.

Embracing the celebration, teachers across the school led two ‘drop everything and read’ sessions where they shared with students an extract from a favourite book, article or poems which was relevant to their lesson before having a discussion about why it is important to them. As you can imagine, there was great variety and the possibility of young readers being inspired to read more.

In History, Mrs. Ennis shared First They Came’ by Pastor Martin Niemöller, ‘Never Shall I Forget’ by Elie Wiesel and ‘Completion’ by Vera Schaufeld as Year 9 are studying The Holocaust and these poems powerfully explore the feeling of survivors and the importance of challenging discrimination.

In Geography, Mrs. Gomersal and Year 8 and 9 read part of ‘The Explorer’ by Katherine Rundell which is a best selling children’s book about four children that crash-land into the Amazon Rainforest. Mrs. Gomersal says, ‘Although Geography related, I like the message of the book. The four children learn that although utterly alone, in order to survive they must work together and trust each other.’

Working with a similar theme, Madame Joly in French with Years 7 and 8 explored ‘Le Petit Prince’ which is a book which talks about the importance of taking care of the people important to you. Years 7 and 9 looked at ‘Voyage au Centre de la Terre’ by Jules Verne with Madame Llaurado who said ‘Jules Verne in general, and this book in particular, is good in nurturing critical thinking and stimulating understanding of other cultures.’

In the Intervention Room, Mrs. Mannion and Year 7 and 8 looked at Chapter 1 and 2 of ‘Dread Wood’ by Jennifer Killick. This had been chosen by students and is one of the books from the Book Buzz scheme that we’re part of. It’s an engaging story to encourage reading. There is also a lovely World Book Day display in the Intervention Room showing 30 students’ favourite books.

The Bible was the focus for Mr. Woodward and Year 9 in RE and, in particular, The Story of Job. Students explored the messages of ancient texts as a basis for helping people deal with suffering and tragedy in today’s world.

In Maths Year 7 read about Mr. Pent the Maths Teacher in ‘The World’s Worst Teachers’ by David Walliams, selected by Mrs. Murphy because of the love of books and the fact that we are never too old to laugh.


In DT, Year 7 and 8 looked at an extract from ‘The Wizard of Earthsea’ by Ursula Le Guin. Mr. Groves said, ‘My Primary school teacher Mr Castledine read this to me when I was 10 years old and it is still my favourite book. It is a fantasy book in the years before GOT and was written with such brilliant imagination, descriptive and emotive language that it gripped me from the first page to the last. It tells the tale of a young wizard called GED who fights and becomes possessed by an evil spirit but he eventually prevails, wounded and wiser. It encourages thoughts about resilience, perseverance and generosity of deed.’


Mrs. Broadhurst used ‘It is ok to be different: a storybook celebrating, Diversity and Acceptance’ with some Year 8 students to support them in understanding what language and verbal communication is acceptable and why.


Miss Kelly chose to share ‘Witch Child’ by Celia Rees with Year 9 which almost immediately predates the setting for ‘The Crucible’. Miss Kelly describes it as ‘Good quality young adult fiction.’ Meanwhile, with her Year 10 class she looked at an extract from ‘Shakespeare (The Man Who Pays the Rent)’ by Judi Dench which looked at her performance of Lady Macbeth and her interpretation of the character.

Miss Camy took the opportunity in Science, with Year 11, to look at the poem, ‘A birthday’ by Christina Rossetti chosen because ‘As it will soon be my birthday I was looking for a poem about birthdays. This is a poem about how it is important to have love for yourself.’


We’ve also been thinking about Futures this week with our Year 9 Options Taster sessions which then lead on to the full Options Evening next Wednesday. Assemblies have also focused on careers with Year 7 looking at STEM and Year 9 looking at, not only their GCSE and BTEC opportunities, but also the possibilities beyond including A levels and apprenticeships.

Year 11 have started on their second set of Progress Exams (mocks) today. We’re looking forward to seeing the Progress that they’ve made since their first set before Christmas. They’ll continue with these next week. Thanks to those parents and carers who came to the Information Evening on Thursday which focused on Wellbeing and supporting students with exams. It was, as ever, also useful to hear feedback on other aspects of school life.

Year 8 will be starting their revision preparation for their exams which begin on Monday 18th March. We have these formal exams for each year group so that they are used to the rules and routines by the time they take their GCSE exams.

Upcoming events include our Professional Development Day on Thursday 14th March when students do not attend school. We then have the Musical Showcase to look forward to during the following week.

You also, this week, have received the letter regarding the Boroughbridge Sports Village Public consultation.

We’re looking forward to the BHS Big Quiz tonight, the first event organised by the newly formed Friends of BHS. We thank them and you for your support with this and look forward to future events.

Have a lovely weekend!