Released On 17th Jun 2021

Headteacher Letter Thursday 17 June

17 June 2021

Dear Parent

The sun is shining, our students are working hard and every day we take one more step towards our overarching vision to develop ambitious students who are knowledgeable and literate.

I am delighted to announce we have appointed our new Deputy Headteacher, Jason Young, who will be joining us from September. Mr Young has been working as a Deputy Associate Principal in the Midlands and has an excellent track record of school improvement. He is hoping to spend some time with us in the summer term and to meet the colleagues and students he will be working with next year. We have also appointed Tom Howchin (English and PE teacher at Stanchester Academy) internally as our new Head of Year who will join our fantastic Pastoral Team from September.

Covid Guidance

On Monday 14 June the Government informed us of the decision to extend the COVID restrictions in place until the Monday 19 July. With this new information, we will be continuing to hold parental events/evenings remotely; this will include our year 6 induction evening. Unfortunately, this also means we have had to delay prom until Thursday 22 July. Further information regarding both events will be following soon.

It remains important for students to continue to take lateral flow tests for COVID-19 at home. Public Health England recommend that this is done twice a week and results are recorded on the NHS website. As ever, if your child receives a positive result, please inform the School Office immediately. Please click here to view all the details in the information booklet. This can also be viewed in the blue leaflet that accompanies the test kits. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the lateral flow tests, please do get in touch.

Charity Fund Raising

Integral to the ethos and culture of Stanchester Academy is our charity fund raising. This year we have raised £880.67 for the charity ‘School in a Bag’ which enable students living in poverty across the globe to receive an education. With this money, we bought 44 bags which will help to make a real difference to these young people’s lives. In addition, we have raised £716.56 for Macmillan Cancer research, a charity which is of particular significance for me, making the total of our contributions to charity so far this year £1,597.23.

Trauma Informed Schools

In January we made the decision to become a Trauma Informed School (known for short as TIS); this decision builds on the work Stanchester Academy has started around students’ mental health and well-being and looks at how we respond to students who have experienced Trauma. The objective for TIS work is to bring about a whole school cultural shift where the wellbeing of all is one of the highest priorities. Over the next three years we will be implementing many interventions to ensure the relational and emotional health of all. The interventions are evidence based with the backing of over 1,000 research studies from psychology and neuroscience. To support the setup of this work in its first year, the Senior Leadership Team and Heads of Year are all completing TIS training and we will be embedding this knowledge and practice into the PHSE/PD and RSE curriculum. In addition, this term we have trained five key staff members to become restorative justice leaders to support peer on peer conflicts. If you would like to find out more information about TIS, please see their website here.

Get Ahead program for Years 7, 8 & 9

As you may be aware, Bridgwater and Taunton College Trust have initiated a program to encourage and support home learning and engagement in a variety of subjects. The program involves free online tutoring sessions with qualified teachers in the subjects of Science, Maths and English.

If students wish to engage in these sessions, which run from 6pm - 7pm Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, students can join via the links listed here. Each link can be copied into a web browser address bar or typed in.

The sessions cover a variety of key topics and involve live exam answers followed by a live Q&A that all students are encouraged to participate in via the ‘chat’ feature on Teams.

Student Update

Year 10 mock exams are in their final week and students have been exceptionally well behaved and focused on these exams. We are now in a really good position to ensure we can accelerate students’ attainment over the next nine months in preparation for their final GCSEs and carefully target interventions for key groups. One of the first ways we plan to do this from September is through the year 11 tutor program which will be used for targeted interventions three mornings a week.

The process of ’Blue Tie’ applications for Senior Students is underway and I am really looking forward to these interviews and our Head Boy and Girl selection process this term.

Thank you to all those families who have contacted a member of the leadership team this term; your support and suggestions help us to reflect and get better: Feedback is a gift.

Yours sincerely

Miss E Forward

Headteacher