Dec 14 2016 - End of Term Letter


12th December 2016

Dear Parent


As the end of our first term draws to a close, it serves as an excellent opportunity to thank you for your ongoing commitment to the Academy.  I would also like to outline the end of term arrangements and signal some key dates in preparation for the rest of the year.


Before I do this however, I would like to take the opportunity to share some excellent team and individual sporting successes.  In September we entered The Redhill Academy Trust Games: a Sports Day where students from the six academies come together to compete and foster a sense of unity.  This was our first Games and something we had to organise quickly; therefore we were very proud of our 3rd place overall.  As ever the teaching team in the PE department used this event as a springboard for up and coming competitions and through the term they went on to achieve great success:  Year 8 and 9 Girls became City Champions in Netball and Year 8 Boys were equally successful as City Champions in Football.  Year 11 made it 'triple Gold' when they became City Champions in Basketball


It's not often that individual students are singled out in end of term letters, but I find myself compelled to, given the physical journey and achievements of two students in Year 8. Lucie and Chloe Jarvis, two popular students who are hugely committed to Ice Skating, have recently experienced great success in their sport.  At the beginning of November the girls travelled to Wales for the Wales & West Competition in Cardiff and won 2 Gold Medals each in the team events.  As they moved through the month they travelled to London and both achieved Gold Medals with Team Icetatic.  Two days later they were whisked over to Belgium to compete in their first International event and once again both girls achieved Gold.  I am sure you will agree this is a phenomenal achievement and testimony to what is possible when you put your mind to being successful.  Well done to the girls and Academy Sports Team.


Following the disappointing decision to postpone the well-established key stage 3 History Trip to Belgium last term, it was really pleasing to see this trip go off without any difficulties in September and to hear about how invaluable students found this aspect of their curriculum coming to life, as did Year 11 following their successful Geography Rivers Trip.  Looking forward to future trips and experiences, the Barcelona trip is set to go in January with the Language Department and in May our well established Spanish Exchange will begin and the annual Outward Bound experience to Wales will set off.


It is good to report that the rebuild is well on track and the current timeline indicates the new school will be completed on time (they are actually two weeks in front currently).  I will be writing to you separately later in the academic year to outline what is anticipated to be an early close to students for the Summer and a slightly later start back next September - the detail of which we will go over in the new year.


This has also been our first term with The Redhill Trust and staff have benefited from a huge amount of support, and at times challenge, all aimed to drive further and rapid improvements from the solid foundation established over the last few years.  A key focus of our work going forward is about ensuring the curriculum has the right breadth, challenge and variety and is reflective of the fantastic new facilities for next September.  More on this in the New Year, but exciting times ahead as the building and future curriculum takes shape.


This was also the term we welcomed the Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Nottinghamshire to the Academy who came to present students with an award on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen.  The Academy receivedThe Lord-Lieutenant's Award for Promoting Voluntary Service - for voluntary and charitable service in Nottinghamshire 2016.This special award which we hold now for three years is "in recognition of your Group's outstanding service to your local community and the significant benefit this makes to the lives of others".  An acknowledgement we are extremely proud of as a real reflection of the giving nature of our students.


A busy term and one that now draws to a close shortly. The Academy will close to students on Tuesday 20th December at lunchtime following our whole school achievement assembly and students will return on Tuesday 3rd January 2017.


Looking to January I would like to remind you of the importance of students' good attendance and the impact days off have on students' achievement.Good attendance is a minimum of 95%.  I would also like to thank you for your support in the change of policy related to mobile phones and associated technology - the positive impact is evident in the significant reduction in concerns about inappropriate use i.e. cyber bullying and has helped us focus more time on supporting learning and progress.  Please also be aware that from January we shall have a stronger stance on a number of uniform, issues, specifically tight trousers, hooded tops / tracksuit tops and caps/hats.  These are not permitted and we ask for your support in ensuring that these are not seen in school.  If these items are seen, they will be confiscated.


We hope you have a good break with family and friends and we look forward to working with you all again from January. For parents of Year 11 students, I'm afraid they need to balance rest with revision.  When they return there is approximately 17 weeks until the beginning of the summer examinations so time is precious and we look forward to seeing you all at the Year 11 Parents Evening on Wednesday 4th January 2017.


The Redhill Trust will be writing to you separately this week to outline the findings form the recent Ofsted inspection and how we will be moving forward.


On behalf of our staff, Governors and The Redhill Academy Trust it only leaves me to wish you all a very Merry Christmas.


Yours sincerely


S Kelly



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