Headteacher's Weekly Update - 15th September 2023
I hope this letter finds you and your families well; a Friday update for you, at the end of our
second week of the new school year.
Students across all five year groups continue to impress, in what has been a settled start to the
new year; I am pleased with behaviour in and outside of the classroom. Special mention must
go to our new Year 7 cohort, who have made a great first impression, as well as Year 10, whose
maturity and hard work in their first few GCSE lessons, has been noteworthy.
It is fair to say that it has been less of a settled start in our new canteen, where we continue to
experience teething problems; something I am unhappy about. Our new caterers, The Pantry,
have been surprised by the volume of students wanting a meal each day, and have not ordered
enough ingredients for some of the options, which have consequently sold out too quickly. They
are now getting to grips with this and, hopefully, these issues have now been resolved.
The second issue has been getting all of the students through the canteen in time. Despite Year
7 coming down to the canteen slightly earlier, students last in, have been late to session three.
This is largely because Year 7, whose photos were only taken on Monday of this week, did not
have their cards until yesterday. This made the payment process for Year 7 at the till, more
time-consuming. We have asked The Pantry to simplify their menu in the short term, to help
speed up the service, until we are all used to the new procedures and processes.
We installed a mobile sandwich servery from Tuesday this week, to ease the pressure in the
canteen. Regardless of your year group, you can ‘grab and go’ a sandwich meal deal from here;
it is stationed just outside the main office. If your child is last on the rota, this provides a
speedier option for students to be fed.
We sent push notifications to families whose child’s account was in arrears on Thursday. It is
vital that every child is at least £2.70 in credit, to be able to afford the meal deal for the day.
Please be aware that we have withdrawn the facility for students to go into arrears. Please ensure your MyEd account is active, to enable those messages to reach you. If you receive such
a message, please top up your child’s account as soon as possible, otherwise they will not be
able to access the meal deal options, until they are out of arrears. If you are experiencing any
problems with this process, please get in touch with us and we will be happy to help.
Our permanent outside servery is due for completion at half term. Students will be able to buy
some hot and cold options from here; this will help to reduce the pressure on the queues in the
canteen too. I expect things to settle down next week though, now that Year 7 have their cards
and will be used to the procedures at the till when using them. Thank you to you all for your
patience in the meantime and my apologies for the inconvenience this has caused.
As we try to be more of a sustainable school, please ensure your child has a refillable water
bottle, with their name on, in school. Jugs of cold water are available in the canteen, as well as
our water fountains around the school. This is a cheaper and more environmentally aware
option than purchasing drinks.
Our Year 11 students have a fantastic opportunity coming up via the Globe Theatre. On 9th
October the Globe Players will be visiting Kelmscott to perform plays for 3 GCSE set texts; An
Inspector Calls, Jekyll and Hyde, and Macbeth. It is extremely important that all Year 11s attend
this event as it is vital for their GCSE Literature revision. Families of Year 11 students will have
already received information regarding this event, families of Year 10 students will receive
information next week.
There is a fantastic-looking STEM online event taking place on 19th September that I thought
might be of interest to our students. Details of the event can be found here.
A request from our trips and visits team; as is usual for Kelmscott, we have many exciting
co-curricular trips planned for the academic year - please adhere to consent form and (where
applicable) payment deadlines, as this is vital to the safe and efficient organisation of trips,
which includes booking venues and travel, and carrying out risk assessments. Thank you in
advance for your continued support here.
Finally, we hope to have our clubs timetable finalised soon. Some clubs have already begun
➔ Chess Club - Tuesday at lunchtime
➔ Games Club - Wednesday at lunchtime
➔ Guitar Club - Friday at lunchtime
Once the timetable is finished, we will share this with students and families.
In addition, an expression of interest will go out to families next week for students interested in
learning a musical instrument.
Mr Sam Jones