Letter from Headteacher – 27th June 2016

Dear Parents and Carers,
We are now in the final 4 weeks of term and this will be my penultimate letter for this academic year. How time has flown. On Friday we held our Year 11 graduation and celebrated the end of secondary schooling for our students. We will see them on Friday in their finery at our Prom at Chilford Hall. Often parents come along to watch the arrivals – I would recommend getting there early as traffic caused by the wide variety of Prom cars can cause problems. Graduation was a fantastic event and we also set a new Castle Manor tradition with an end of Year 11 staff video, much to the amusement and delight of those present. It has reached nearly 2000 views so far. The video can be found here if anyone else would like to raise a smile.

The EU referendum has caused much debate and reaction after the vote. It has been excellent talking to students about their views. As the country reacts to the outcome of the vote we do in school too and have been working with students to ensure that our messages of unity, tolerance, equality and kindness are expressed in our school community.

With external exams almost complete for Year 11, 12 and 13 it is the turn of Years 7-10 to sit end of year exams. These are an excellent measure of progress and good practice for students to work under exam conditions. It is evident that the changes in the curriculum make exam technique and memory more and more important and our work to ensure students are exam confident will continue throughout their time at school.

Some students and staff were lucky enough to attend a live filming of ‘Springwatch Unsprung’ last week. They were clearly visible in the audience of the show and enjoyed meeting Chris Packham and Michaela Strachan for autographs afterwards. We also really enjoyed Year 7 camp last week, children learned how to put their tents up, toasted marshmallows on the fire and enjoyed using a climbing wall, archery, learning bushcraft skills and much, much more – all on very little sleep! These opportunities to enrich the curriculum are really important for developing character and resilience. Year 7 were fantastic company and I think new friendships were formed too.

Just a reminder that the parental consultation for our proposed transfer to Samuel Ward Academy Trust is open and there is a drop-in session this evening at 5:30pm if you would like to attend and ask any questions.

Please do contact me on VWhitcombe@castlepartnership.org.uk if there is anything you would like to discuss with me or to book an appointment contact my PA, Mrs Mitchell on GMitchell@castlepartnership.org.uk.

Yours sincerely,

Mrs Vanessa Whitcombe

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