Headteacher’s blog week ending 27th September 2019
We hold our Open Evening next week on Thursday 3 October. Always an exciting time as current students welcome Year 5s and 6s, sharing all the stimulating learning and activities that make up life at Chesterton. Please do share the date with any interested families you may know.
Please do ask your children about the tutor notices that are shared in tutor time and via Edmodo. They are full of a wealth of information about activities happening in school.
Music Residential Trip
We are hoping to run a Music residential trip to the Netherlands in June 2020. This is open to all Year 7 – 11 students who are happy to take part in an extracurricular music group. This will be a really enriching and exciting experience including sightseeing, giving concerts and musical activities; we hope that many students will consider signing up. We estimate that the cost of the trip will be around £550 per student; however, we plan to include some fundraising activities across the school year to support the trip. To give final details about whether the trip can go ahead, costs and a final itinerary, we need to see who is interested. If your child would like to express an interest in coming, complete the Google form here: https://forms.gle/3UMgGoetVmq8hM246, which also gives further details of the visit. We are very keen to open this trip to as many students as possible. Therefore, if you would be happy for your child to attend such a trip but not at its current destination/duration/cost, please still fill in the form in order to express an interest. We will contact all parents of students who have expressed an interest by Friday 4th October to explain how the trip will proceed.
The Chesterton Pledge is now picking up speed with weekly meetings taking place and projects starting in the coming weeks. Please remind your child to look at the extracurricular timetable for Pledge updates, starting from next week, as well as whole school notices for any messages relating to the Pledge. Students have signed up to four projects which will be starting soon. There are still spaces across all of the following projects: The Dip Renovation Project, The Sneaker Project, The Green Team Project and The Milton Road Library Project. For further information students are invited to attend meetings every Tuesday in the A Room where we discuss the project requirements, timings and equipment needed. Should you have any contacts or feel passionate about any ongoing community project, please do not hesitate to contact Mr Firth.
Congratulations to our Year 11 GCSE Drama students who performed their assessed pieces this week. The performances were stunning and showcased beautifully in our new auditorium.
The Music Department is currently recruiting Year 7 musicians for an upcoming Teatime Concert on Tuesday 15th October, beginning at 3:45pm in M1 (performers to arrive by 3:15 to warm up). This is an ideal opportunity for students to practise performing their instrument or singing to an audience in a friendly environment. The sign-up sheet is on the M1 door.
Headteachers from Delhi, India
This week we have hosted a group of headteachers from Delhi. The headteachers are participating in a ten-day CPD programme organised by the University of Cambridge. During their time in school they have visited lessons, taken part in training sessions and attended lectures, all with the aim of gaining new ideas to take back to their schools in Delhi.
Parent Teacher Association (PTA)
Chesterton’s PTA dates back to 1954. For 65 years parents and teachers have been working together to raise money to fund equipment, resources and experiences to enrich the lives of Chesterton’s young people. Currently we do not have any volunteers to run the PTA and so we are in danger of having to dissolve the group. We are incredibly grateful to everyone who supports the school in a wide variety of ways and we would be delighted to hear from individuals or groups who might feel able to be involved in running the PTA this year. Please contact Donna Hubbard-Young at firstname.lastname@example.org
Parent Governor Elections
We are pleased to announce that we have had an excellent level of interest in our parent governor vacancies and are now proceeding to a ballot for the election of three parent governors. We are conducting this election online using the email address we have registered for parents in the school database. You will have received your email invitation to vote now; this includes a link, unique to you, which you can use to vote. (If you have not received an email yet, please check your Junk Mail and your parentmail link.) If you cannot vote electronically, you can vote in person at our school reception. All voting must be completed by the end of Monday 7th October.
Year 11 have been settling into their final year at Chesterton and excitement is already building in anticipation of the November Mock exams. Year 11 have also put college applications well and truly on their radar as they begin researching local colleges and the exciting courses they offer. Mocks timetables will be issued in the next week or two.
The Year 10 Hospitality and Catering students are off to a flying start in their Level 1/2 course. They have already undertaken a wide range of activities in and outside of school; they particularly enjoyed the ‘Teacake challenge’ at the start of term, focusing on food presentation, and this week visited the local Holiday Inn, Histon, for a VIP guided tour of the facilities. The students asked insightful questions during the visit and impressed the Operational Manager with their obvious enthusiasm and thirst for knowledge. The short visit was a fantastic behind-the-scenes peak which really helped the students at the start of their course. They end the week preparing for the in-school cake sale raising money for the national Macmillan Cancer Charity.
Zipping towards success: workload-neutral strategies to establish a powerful knowledge base for all students – Our work to support teachers across the world
We are proud to have been selected to work with the Chartered College of Teaching (CCT) to model aspects of teaching practice. Chesterton hosted the CCT’s film crew at the end of last year when they filmed lessons taught by Ms Marston, Ms Robinson, Mrs Murray-Williams, Ms Blanchard, Ms Evans and Dr Hutchinson. We received the first drafts of the films earlier this week.
In addition to the filming, we have supported the CCT’s work in a number of other ways. Mr Gage and Mr Firth have both written articles for the ‘Accelerate’ project, a suite of resources to support newly and recently qualified teachers and help to retain them in the teaching profession. Dr Hutchinson has recently had another article accepted to be published in Impact, the CCT’s termly journal. The article will focus on the design and implementation of an innovative assessment programme for Key Stage 3 Religious Studies.
Thank you to those who came to our wellbeing evening at the end of last week. It was fantastic to see so many parents there and to have the opportunity to spend time focusing on wellbeing. We hope that you all received our open invite to our parent support group taking place on Thursday 17th October at 4-5pm in Stir Café on Chesterton Road. The sessions will be run by a current parent and will provide you with the opportunity to share experiences and strategies for yourselves as well as the students. If you would like to attend, please do email email@example.com
Cavendish have had a fantastic start to the academic year – congratulations to Cavendish 1 who are in the lead of our Above and Beyond Points (ABP) table They have earned 147 points so far, which means many of the students would have unlocked their first level and will be receiving their cookie voucher. Well done Olivia (Year 7) in Cavendish 8 for receiving the most ABP in the whole house.
Equiano have continued their excellent start to the year. Attendance overall is excellent, just below the school target of 97% while four forms, Eq.1, Eq.4, Eq.7 and Eq.9 are above 98%. Students in Equiano have received almost 2000 Above and Beyond Points (ABPs). Leading the way is Eq.6 with 238 while individuall, Jasmine in Eq.3 has received the most ABPs. Well done to all students going that extra mile for their learning and the school!
Almost four weeks into the first term and Fawcett House have had another excellent star. Lots of students are embracing the opportunities at Chesterton; from the school choir, to girls’ rugby, to Art Club and the Chesterton Pledge, many have attended extracurricular programmes. Behaviour remains exceptional with Fawcett House receiving the fewest bad news slips across the whole school. Fawcett’s prefects for this year are Adam, Juliette and Lily-Kate – we wish them good luck with their responsibilities this year!
It has been a pleasure for Mrs Williams to walk around the school this week seeing how well all Hill students have settled back into school life, in particular during tutor time: the older students were keen to ensure the Year 7 students understood the topics they are covering and that on Friday they contributed answers for the weekly quiz. Hill students took part in an assembly on Diversity this week, helping them to understand the global differences in the world in which we live.
Robinson have had a brilliant start to the year and Miss Martinelli has been so impressed with the level of hard work and enthusiasm shown by students. This week we have been celebrating Diversity in form time and assembly and I am proud to say that Robinson students are respectful, kind and accepting of one another. Many students have put themselves forward for House Council and volunteered to help during Open Evening and it is rewarding to see students showing pride in and commitment to the school. The Year 7s are very much settled into school life and it has been brilliant to see them interacting with students from other year groups during form time. The positive behaviour in Robinson is reflected in the number of Above and Beyond Points we have achieved – 1,048 since the start of the year! A special congratulations to Kristers and Robin who have the highest number of ABPs in Robinson, an impressive 18. Congratulations also to Hana, Yunji, Yuxin, Maeve and Joanna for earning 16 ABPs.
It’s About YOU
Our ‘It’s About YOU’ sessions are fully underway. This week Mrs Baker-Williams gave up her time to run a session on mindfulness journals. Using a journal is a great way to support any student, as sometimes we can benefit from writing/documenting things so that perhaps we have less going on in our minds. It can relieve stress, put things in perspective, and help set and achieve goals.
On Mondays during tutor time, all students access ‘Mindfulness Mondays’. These provide our students with the opportunity to clear their minds, meditate and to start the week with a positive mindset. Many are really appreciating these sessions, creating opportunities during the school day for them to continue to become ‘more mindful’. Miss Gibson runs these sessions on Tuesday lunch week 1 for Years 7, 10 and 11 and then on Friday lunch week 1 for Years 8 and 9. Miss Gibson is also running a 10-week course on Wednesdays week 2 afterschool. All these sessions are hosted in room S4.
Duke of Edinburgh’s Award
On Friday 20th and Saturday 21st September the Duke of Edinburgh’s (DofE) Bronze cohort of 2019 basked in the beautiful sunny weather to complete their assessed expedition. Five groups walked from different starting points along their planned routes, to arrive at Base Camp in Abington late afternoon. They were able to enjoy some well-earned down time once the tents were up and meals, of varying delights, concocted!
Sunday concluded following another impressive day with very impressive team work and effort shown by all. Now all that is left for the 2019 participants to do is ensure their evidence is submitted for final approval onto the eDofE system.
The next opportunity for students to enrol onto the Bronze DofE will be after half term. Please ensure anyone (currently restricted to Year 9 only) who is interested in finding out more contacts Mrs Askham (DofE Manager) and looks out for the advertised introduction meeting which will take place towards the end of the Autumn term.
More information about DofE can also be found via www.dofe.org. Activities for each of the three DofE sections takes a minimum of one hour a week over a 3 and 6-month period, so they can be fitted in around academic study, hobbies and social life. It is a great way to try new things and experiences.
Have you registered for Easyfundraising?
It’s really easy and done in a few steps.
- Go to easyfundraising.org.uk to register. Scroll down to the box where you search for your cause. Type in “Chesterton Community College” and pick your student’s house from the drop-down list. Click the pink “Support this cause” button.
- Follow the instructions to create an account
- When asked, click the pink “Donation Reminder” box. This will add an extension to your Chrome browser which lets you know whenever you’re on a site that will make an Easyfundraising donation
- Don’t forget to get the mobile app for your phone too!
What is Easyfundraising?
Easyfundraising is a trusted platform where over 3,000 registered retailers donate a portion of their earnings back to charities when you make online purchases at no cost to yourself
Chesterton Community College
Mrs Lucy Scott