Dear Parents and Carers,
Year 2 and Year 6
Very well done to year 2 and year 6 who have been very busy over the last two weeks. Year 2 have been in class doing their quizzes and year 6 have been doing the SATs papers. The Year 6 reading paper was so tricky that it has made the national news, so I’m even more impressed with how very sensible and calm the pupils at WPA were. They all took things completely in their stride. Well done to them all. Year 6 followed their SATS with a magic trick, making a very large pile of Dominos pizzas disappear without trace. Year 2 are having a treat this afternoon.
GCSE and A-Level Examinations
The big news of this week is the start of the GCSE and GCE exams. The revision breakfasts have been popular, as they are every year, and students are giving it their best shot. Well done to Year 11 and Year 13 on a great start to these important few weeks.
Exams can be stressful, not least because at the end of an exam, you never really know how you have done. You have to put each one behind you as you finish it and focus on the next. The pastoral team and subject teams are available to support any students who need it. There is some helpful advice for young people here: https://www.youngminds.org.uk/young-person/coping-with-life/exam-stress/ and some good advice for parents here: https://www.nhs.uk/mental-health/children-and-young-adults/advice-for-parents/help-your-child-beat-exam-stress/
I’d like to pass on massive congratulations to the Year 9 footballers, especially the unstoppable girls’ team who won their final against Stowmarket 2-0 this week to be crowned overall winners of the West Suffolk Cup, a wonderful achievement. Last week the boys lost their final to King Edwards and finished runners up in the same competition. I know they will be disappointed to have had victory within their sight, but we’re still extremely proud of them. It is fantastic to see all of them all doing so well. Fabulous work.
Y10 Drama Performance
Year 10GCSE Drama students have been devising performances since the spring term in preparation for their component 1 exam next month. They have all been given a range of stimuli from which they have created their own original pieces of theatre. Students will be showcasing their performances on Thursday 25th May in the Drama studio from 5-6pm. Parents and staff are invited to attend as well as any students who may wish to see what GCSE Drama entails. We also have a group of keen and able Year 9 students who will be supporting with lighting and sound for these performances.
Term time holidays
We cannot authorise term time holiday in any but the most extreme cases. I understand that it is much cheaper to go on holiday in term time and that sometimes things are arranged by family members who are not limited by school terms, which makes things difficult. Nonetheless, the rules from the DfE are very clear. Requests have risen this year to a level I’ve never seen before. I apologise for the disappointment that turning down those requests will cause but I thought it was as well to be upfront about this.
A group of SWA students in Year 9 are fundraising to support their trip to Croatia next year with World Challenge. They will be holding a car boot sale in the SWA carpark on Sunday 11th June. We’ll share more details nearer the time, but it would be great if we could support that.
A number of SWA students are preparing to visit the Ardèche over half term for an outward-bound activity holiday. I’m sure they will have a fantastic time on a trip that proves popular year after year.
WPA charity fundraiser
Harper, a student at WPA was taken seriously ill when she was younger after contracting e-coli and a kidney infection. During that time, she and her parents travelled frequently between Haverhill and Nottingham Hospital, where she received life-saving treatment.
On Tuesday 23 May, her father is leading a walk from Nottingham to Westfield to raise funds for the hospital, covering a mammoth 114 miles. As well as raising funds for Nottingham and the West Suffolk Hospital diabetes centre, hopes to raise awareness of type one diabetes and kidney donation. We are very pleased to support this valuable event with a charity day at WPA. The walk finishes at WPA, where we will be waiting in non-uniform to greet them and celebrate their amazing achievement.
Year 12 UCAS events
As year 13 approach their final week at HC6 and SWA, the sixth form team are already underway with organising Year 12's 'Futures Month' which kicks off after the half term break. For the whole of June, our Year 12s will be turning their attention to their future aspirations. Mr Hogg, who leads our personal development program, has been busy booking events and talks ready for Futures Month. That will include the UCAS Fair at the University of Suffolk, tutor time activities, alumni guest speakers, talks from guest lecturers as well as our dedicated drop-down day to begin the UCAS and apprenticeship application process. Further to this, we will be sending out our 'Parents' Guide' for university applications as well as inviting parents to our UCAS and Careers Information Evening.
Happy Sheds and Uniform
The Happy Sheds are working very well now. We have been able to help over sixty families with food, toiletries, cleaning products and other essentials. If you need something, whatever it is, get in touch and we will see what we can do.
As Year 6 and Year 11 prepare to leave, I’d like to invite you to send us any uniform you no longer need. It doesn’t need to be pristine but it would be helpful if it were still smart. We will add that to our stocks.
For all children, as they grow out of uniform, we can help with the next size up, as long as we have it in stock. If the uniform your child has grown out of is still in good condition, we will be pleased to take that and give it to someone else that needs it.
Finally, if you have anything at all that you would like to donate, we’d like to hear from you.
The Happy Sheds can be contacted at:
We want to make the best use of the lovely new projector, screen and sound system in the SWA studio. We’ve obtained a licence to allow us to show films free of charge and we are investigating running a series of cinema events for students and their families. We’ll start by inviting Year 6 to come and watch a film as a post SATs treat in the next few weeks. I hope to be able to arrange at least one other cinema event before the end of this term. I’ll share details as I know them.
Friends of the schools
We had our first Friends of Westfield meeting which was very successful. We are planning on holding a school disco on Friday 7th July. More details will be shared via Class Dojo. If any parents are interested in forming a Friends of SWA group, I’d be very pleased to hear from them.
I’ll end by congratulating the winners of the WPA design a Coronation crown competition; Sophia and Parker. Well done both.
Have a great weekend,
Westfield Primary and Samuel Ward Academies