Things are changing!

By now you will be aware that we had a visit last week from Ofsted and although I cannot say too much at this stage, I can tell you that we are thrilled. I spoke with students on Monday to share some of the things said about them and they walked out of the hall feeling very proud indeed.

The team felt our students were incredible young people. They described them as polite and respectful; as ambitious, confident and engaging; that they represented themselves, their families and school wonderfully and with great credit also stating that they have tremendously positive attitudes to learning that enable them to make progress. I heard all of this at the feedback meeting towards the end of the inspection and I had a lump in my throat. Indeed, last weekend all I could think about was telling the students and the reaction they would have to that kind of praise. Once the report is made available I will be able to tell you more and I thank you all for your support over the past two years especially. The hard work has been worth it.

Of course life goes on and that has certainly been the case in the large group room since Monday. We received an incubator with eggs in. They were all ready to hatch and on Wednesday the first chick broke through and introduced themselves to the world and our students. Since then only a couple remain but the other chicks are keen to meet them and are busy helping them break free of their shells as a I write. It is something I have never been a part of but seeing how our staff and students have reacted to these little animals has been a joy and thus we will look to repeat this experience if possible. They are going home with Ms. Roberts for the weekend and in the coming weeks we will hopefully find them homes. Thanks to Ms. Mosby and her team for this a possibility and providing yet more experiences for our students that will last long in the memory.

Our Beckfoot Upper Heaton Student Leadership Group have also had a busy start to their tenure this week. They have hosted a group of student leaders from Beckfoot School this week and shared ideas. They also led assemblies for all students informing them of their impact projects for 2018. These include gaining Heathy and Eco School status, supporting menu choices in the dining room, delivering a new look and content for the student planner and supporting the charity Young Minds. Unbelievable stuff really from our students and I am excited to see how they develop and deliver their ideas in the weeks and months ahead.

Our Year 11 students will finish the term engaged in a Super Learning Day at the Mercure Hotel in Bingley. They will be treated like professional conference delegates and work with their English, Science and Maths teachers to prepare for their forthcoming GCSE exams and also to best utilize the time they will have away from school during the Easter holidays. It should be very special.

In addition to that day there is also a comprehensive revision programme being offered by staff over the holiday period. I am so grateful to them for giving up their time so freely and demonstrating, once again, the absolute commitment they have to our students; it’s humbling.

Lastly, it’s Sports Relief today. Our students will pay £1 for the privilege to wear their own clothes and I know that many have been carefully considering their wardrobe options for some time now. I, of course, don’t worry about that kind of thing due mainly to very limited options within my wardrobe! The students are doing all sorts to raise money including running a mile in PE lessons, bake sales and a plethora of other activities all designed to beat our total of last year.

Remember, we close for the holidays next Thursday at 2.35pm. Have a good weekend.


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