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Cruising At Altitude

10 September 2015

Schools are sophisticated organisations and the processes involved at the start of the school year are very complex.  Analogies have been made with flights and the beginning of term is often referred to as ‘Take-Off’ by our Principal, Kevin Foyle.  

  • Andrew Lancaster

As we approach the midpoint of this term, we are most definitely ‘In-Flight’ - this week has seen the start of our ECA programme at the Secondary School.  Students across the school have chosen to participate in sports –some of which include football, swimming, netball, volleyball, rugby and tennis.  These activities provide an effective balance to the academic expectations that we have of our pupils in lessons and through homework.  They help to develop resilience as students exert themselves physically for personal bests and also promote collaboration within their teams.  These are strands that we know promote a positive mind-set in individuals. 

These principles also apply to other ECAs that provide challenge and stimulation.  Students have chosen ECAs from Art to Modern Foreign Languages (MFL), from Cryptology to Film Club, Chinese Cooking to K-Pop, Concert Band to Medolescent Medical Club.  We have students supporting children at the Qing Pu Xiulong Migrant School, rehearsing for our first Performing Arts production of “Fool’s Gold” and creating business plans in the Enterprise Club.  There are over one hundred and fifty to choose from during the school year.  Students all have their full homework timetables and so I am sure that you are noticing at home that they are being properly challenged from this perspective too.

We have seen a full schedule of evening events at the school this week too, for both parents and students.  Our information evening for our native MFL programmes was very well attended, followed on Tuesday by a thought-provoking session on how to succeed at Key Stage 3, delivered by Nick Rickford (Deputy Head) and supported by our wonderful Year 9 students - Sam Bailey, Mia Crockart, Emmie Crawford and Mitchell Lee.

Seventeen of our IB students are currently completing their challenging IA Gold Award in Qiandaohu, Hangzhou, where they have been kayaking (50km), cycling (80km) and camping too – you can follow their progress in our blog posts.

The term will continue at pace and I urge you to check our calendar pages under the section “Parent Essentials”, which can be accessed from the homepage of the school’s website.

Andrew Lancaster, Head of Secondary

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