Notice to parents and carers
As another half term has come to an end at SRPA, I wanted to write to you with some updates as to progress we are making and events which may affect your child.
We have continued to make improvements to our academy site in recent weeks and months. Our Great Hall floor has been entirely replaced with new flooring with the Academy emblem emblazoned across it. New seating has also been provided in outside spaces for all year groups to be able to enjoy time eating and socialising together. The first half of our roofing project is now complete, with a view to this being fully completed in the next twelve months.
Year 11 support
Following last year’s successful programme, we are once again running Year 11 Family learning sessions for English, mathematics and science on Monday 25 February from 5.30pm – 8.30pm. These sessions are designed for parents to receive support in ensuring their youngsters are well-prepared for the upcoming mock and final examinations in the summer.
There is a further session planned for Monday 11 March from 5.30pm – 8.30pm entitled ‘Preparing for a successful examination season’. We hope to see you there.
Further Year 11 holiday revision sessions have been publicised to students already. We hope to see them there.
We have made several additional staffing appointments recently to improve the quality of education at the Academy.
Since Mr Hardesty passed away last year, the Academy has been without a full-time Head of Design Technology. I am delighted to share with you that we have appointed Mr Palethorpe to lead this area from Easter. Mr Palethorpe is an excellent and experienced practitioner who joins us from the Nova Education Trust. Miss Johnson has also been appointed to the new Head of Performing Arts post and Miss Papaioannou has been appointed to lead the Humanities team. I am sure you will join me in congratulating them. We have also appointed Miss Gamwell to Art & DT, as well as Miss Taylor to the history department. We also expect to appoint to our vacancies in English, mathematics and science immediately after half term. These are additional posts as the Academy grows in size.
University Partnerships – Aiming High
We have recently begun a programme of university visits for our Key Stage 3 students. The initial visit to the University of Nottingham was a really successful day that engaged some of our Year 7 cohort in aiming high for University. This opportunity will be rolled out for all Year 7 students in the coming months. Additionally, we plan for local universities to visit the Academy to provide assemblies, subject workshops and parent seminars in order to ensure that our young people are fully supported on their educational journey across the Key Stage. More details will follow in relation to this in the coming weeks.
We have introduced a new ‘colours’ system for students who excel in certain disciplines. We recognise that we have many exceptionally talented young people who deserve extra recognition three times a year. As a result, special ties are now available for students who represent themselves and the Academy in the community, those who raise money for charity, those who are showing exemplary leadership qualities, those who excel at sport in or out of the Academy and those who are talented performers in Music and Drama. At Easter, we will consider our next round of recipients. Students can be nominated by department leads, class teachers or can apply to be considered. The application process will be shared with students after the half term break.
We are the only school in the county to have our own mental health hub for the school and the community. Ably led by Mr Kirk, this facility is undergoing a ‘DIY SOS’ approach as we speak and will be fully functional for students in the coming weeks. At the moment we are seeing this Hub do excellent work in supporting the mental health of our students as we are able to refer far more rapidly than CAMHS. If you would like any further information about our Hub or would like to help us develop it, please contact us at the Academy.
School uniform for female students will be changed for the next academic year in order to harmonise the full school uniform. The current blue skirt and trousers are to be swapped with a grey pleated skirt or grey trousers – matching the colour of the boys’ uniform. The new pleated skirts come down to the knee and are designed so they cannot be folded over at the waist, raising the hemline.
New grey uniform can be worn from Easter but will not be compulsory until the new academic year in September. It is hoped this option gives parents more scope to switch when it suits them or fits in with their children’s growth.
We are confident that the new style skirt is more readily and widely available than the current version, making it easier for parents to buy.
Both new options are available from the current supplier Uniform Direct but other options are also available which we will publish after the half term break.
Both grey skirt and trousers are available starting at the same price as parents currently pay. This has been researched deliberately so as to avoid extra costs for parents.
I realise that students and parents have not seen as much of me in the past few weeks due to my broken ankle. Thank you for your patience if I have not been able to meet you in person. I hope to be back to normal after the half term break once I am off the crutches.
Mr D.J. Hardy