The Headteacher's Blog - Monday 14 January 2019

Mid-January already and our second week back in school. Definitely business as usual and a happy start to the new year and we are all working together to provide a world class education in a happy learning environment.

It is worth saying that some of the work we are currently undertaking might not be immediately visible. That’s to say looking at systems and structures to ensure the efficient and effective working of the school and, yes, of the Wessex Learning Trust. I spent the early part of my career in retail and my teaching career in Business Studies and Economics, so I have some understanding how positive systems facilitate smooth functioning to generate the best outcomes. We are in a modern era of schooling and looking ahead (because that is the only way to keep moving) I am striving for us to be the best in all that we do and all that we stand for. And we can all play our part in this objective. My leadership team already know it is JDI January (Just Do It!) and this combined energy and focus across the whole school is driving us ahead - as you would expect for the top school in Somerset.

Meanwhile, I am always pleased to meet with students. Who after all, are the future. Towards the end of last week, I was delighted to talk with Ewan Foster in Year 10 who is one of the students embarking on the Achievement Project led by Subject Leader for Design Technology Mr Batchelor. The project could be described as the younger sibling to the Extended Project Qualification undertaken in the Sixth Form. But that it is not to belittle it by any stretch of the imagination. The students accepted to do the project have to apply by letter outlining their chosen subject and their intentions for the project. In other words, they become project managers!

Students are now at the drafting stage and Ewan’s project is on Space Travel in the 21st Century. An important and very-of-the-moment topic for those of you who saw the news item at the end of last year when the Chinese space crew landed on the far side of the moon. Ewan expressed himself articulately, intelligently and with enthusiasm and I want to hear more about his findings as his project progresses. I am also confident this might inspire him to pursue studies in Physics, or certainly Science – and who knows the space industry is infinitely fascinating and needs bright people like Ewan and other Kings’ students! Well done so far Ewan and I wish all the students participating on the project every success and enjoyment in their chosen research.

Over 60 Year 10 students will be acting and singing in the Performing Arts show of “Matilda” on Tuesday evening this week. Thank you to parents and staff for coming along to support them. You will know that having an audience is a key part of showcasing their work. Please contact Teacher of Performing Arts Miss Hall for any further information. The show will go on! Have I mentioned tickets for “Legally Blonde” are now on sale via Parent Pay for Monday 11, Tuesday 12 and Wednesday 13 February 2019 at 7pm in the King Theatre…?!

Tuesday is the last day of the Year 13 Pre-Public Exams and after all their endeavours, I appreciate that students will be keen to know the results! Thank you to our teachers for their hard work in marking all the papers so that they can provide constructive and meaningful feedback and guidance at this crucial time in the school year in the final run-up to the summer exams.

You will know from the weekly bulletins and online calendars that there are a number of BTEC assessments this week in Business Studies and Sport. A chance to shine! Although GCSE have returned to the linear assessment process with a final exam in the summer; BTEC’s, on the other hand, retain assessments during the year towards students’ final mark. Year 11 Art and Textiles students are also busy on their exam rep days preparing for the timed exam session.

Still in January, I am rather hoping that reading more will be on your list as a new year’s resolution and to support this venture there is lots going on in the Learning Resource Centre. A House Reading Competition, whereby for every returned book with a review, the book spine will be used to build a tower. The tallest wins! There are also plans afoot for a student-led book club in the LRC on Fridays during tutor time. Plus books to read by the Author for the Month (for January it is Sophie McKenzie, best known for “The Medusa Project”). Following a recent book audit there is currently a book sale to buy some now dated books – which are being moved on to make room for new editions - for a reasonable donation to the LRC and the money will be used to update stocks with more relevant books. It’s time to get reading!

Whatever you do in school this week, believe it in, rise to the challenge and enjoy it!

Believe and succeed!

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