This week we marked Safer Internet Day with a whole school assembly, encouraging staff and students to talk about how they use the internet.
We considered screen time and also looked at recommendation algorithms and the importance of understanding how social media is designed to encourage people to stay on pages.
Please watch the assembly at this link and talk through the issues at home.
In the Sixth Form we are celebrating the success of students gaining offers not only for highly competitive courses but also for a variety of higher education and degree apprenticeship courses. Students are also planning resourceful gap year opportunities and pathways.
I am delighted that the quality of our candidates was recognised again this year through offers released by the admission tutors at both the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford. The offers received reflect a range of subjects including Medicine, Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology, Mathematics, Human, Social, and Political Sciences, Classical Archaeology and Ancient History, Chemistry and Engineering.
Ms Davidson, Assistant Head Post-16, said, “Students are demonstrating their intellectual potential and exceptional academic ability in the standard assessment tests. They also convey their curiosity for learning, their enthusiasm and self belief at interview, all borne out through having the personal responsibility and motivation to work hard. By receiving offers for their chosen higher education courses, students are receiving the recognition that they really do deserve for their exemplary work ethic with goals for what is to come.
Students holding offers from the University of Cambridge
Harry Cane, Fitzwilliam College, Medicine
Thomas Dobby, Clare College, Mathematics
Harmony Mitchell, Murray Edwards College, Human, Social, and Political Sciences
Henry Murphy, Lucy Cavendish College, Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology
Orlando Wooding, Lucy Cavendish College, Natural Sciences
Toby Spencer, St John's College, Engineering
Students holding offers from the University of Oxford
Harry Bentley-Bonsey, Brasenose College, Classical Archaeology and Ancient History
Max Maclennan, St John's College, Chemistry
Rufus Sadler, Jesus College, Engineering
Pictured are Harmony Mitchell, Henry Murphy, Harry Cane, Thomas Dobby,
Orlando Wooding, Rufus Sadler and Max Maclennan with Ms Davidson
Miss Cunningham says that Year 13 students were working with parametric equations and equations of circles and ellipses this week and has shared a link to the Desmos work completed by Toby Acharya 13RNC.
Well done Toby!
Well done to Jack Martin 10N who is representing the county on the Devon Cricket South African U15 Tour 2023.
We’re looking forward to hearing about your adventures Jack.
Very well done to students who competed at the ECF Team and Junior Team Chess Challenge.
Two senior and two junior teams entered the competition; they all also attend our chess club every Tuesday after school.
Creative Writing Club
Those who attend Creative Writing Club have been very busy.
Mrs Phillips reports that at the end of last term they all entered a Young Writers competition called 'Integer' and we recently received the news that seven of them have been selected to have their short stories published!
Once the anthology is released at the end of March the winners will be announced and we are eagerly awaiting the results. The students should be really proud of the fantastic stories they have produced; they had to be based on a number and have no more than 100 words. They all rose to the challenge and crafted some very creative and inspiring pieces. Each student has been awarded a certificate and they are all extremely excited about having their work published.
Very well done to Samson Evans 7S, Michael Jaganarv 7N, Jakub Zwoinski 7N, Daniel Bott 8E, Joe Jua 8S, Hamish Bailey 8P and Zack Smith 8P.
Mrs Phillips added, “We can't share any of the short stories until the anthology is published and the winners announced. Hopefully at that point we might have a winning piece or two to share”.
Well done to over 70 students who enjoyed a day of training on site with Dynamic Adventures and Mrs Huq last Saturday.
Sixth Form Tutorial and Enrichment
Students in Year 12 have been encouraged to complete the skills test on Unifrog to open up access to invaluable insights to be gained from the free psychometric testing offered via this platform.
Their sessions with tutors today also covered life skills topics such as meal planning and budgeting, basic sewing techniques,the 'why and how' of habits, disconnecting from online activities to communal ones with others, climate change resilience, planning a holiday and wellbeing and mindfulness.
Some gained skills for life and the workplace through a Summerservices workshop on the importance and practicalities of 'active listening to others'.
Year 13 students had their first significant focus on Student Finance with two more sessions to come.
We are finishing the half term with an extremely busy week for tutorial lessons. As well as a safer internet assembly for the whole school on Wednesday from Ms Buckler, students also had the opportunity to watch a short film of all the candidates for this year's UKYP (UK Youth Parliament) elections. Students had the opportunity to cast their vote today, using the official voting booths (on loan from PCC) ballot box and papers to make a very realistic experience.
Results will be announced next half term when all local schools have voted.
We also had a visit from the RAF careers officer for interested students in Year 10 upwards. Students had the chance to meet in small groups or individually to receive advice and guidance on opportunities offered.
In the Friday lesson Year 7 classes were either finishing the first aid Red Cross lessons, or having a catch up session covering whichever lesson they missed earlier in the term.
Year 8 students were considering job families e.g. police, lawyer, barrister, court official, and also using Panjango, a careers site that allows students to explore different jobs, and complete connected challenges.
Year 9 students had two sessions from The Zone in Plymouth where experienced youth workers presented two seminars on healthy relationships and consent, followed by pornography. Lessons were mainly discussion based but using actual facts and statistics as a balance to the often more inaccurate depictions available online.
The Year 10 lesson used resources from NatWest Moneysense to understand the effect of their money choices on their own and others’ mental wellbeing, and to understand the possible consequences of gambling and debt and finally know about ‘money mule’ schemes and how to avoid them.
Year 11 students this week had a lesson called ‘Why Uni?’ which incorporated discussion and debate on the pros and cons of going to university, including some virtual campus tours.
A smaller group of students who were fairly decided that they would be pursuing an apprenticeship route chose to meet with a recent old boy, Josh Jones, who is currently half way through an apprenticeship with SDA, the Submarine Development Agency part of the Ministry of Defence. He talked about his experiences, and was accompanied by his manager to give current advice for anyone wishing to apply this year.
So after all that, we are all ready for a break - wishing everyone a healthy and productive half term week.
Very well done to the Year 7 football team who unfortunately go out of the National Cup following a 4 - 2 defeat to The Cherwell School Oxford.
Our whole squad performed magnificently and were a credit to the school.
There were great performances from the Year 8 football team in the Plymouth central venue competition this week.
Mr Carpenter said, “Well done to all the students taking part over the two nights”.
A win and a loss for our U14s in the next round of the Plymouth central venue fixtures.
Well done to the students involved.
The Year 10 national cup football quarter final draw sees us take on Hurstmere School from Kent at home. We’re looking forward to this clash and and match details will follow in due course.
Congratulations to the Year 11 team - through to the next round of the Devon Cup after beating Churston Ferrers School 4 - 0 on Friday afternoon last week.
Our table tennis team unfortunately missed out on a trip to the national finals after finishing runners up against very strong competition at the regional competition.
Well done to all involved.
Mr Campbell added, "A superb effort from our table tennis players in the regional table tennis singles championships yesterday. All should be very proud but a special shout out to Leo in 9C for making the National finals in Aldersley. We finished with a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in the U16 and a 3rd place in the U13 event".