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  • Writer's pictureMr S. Jones

Headteacher's Weekly Update 18 - 26th January 2024

Dear Parents/Carers

I hope this letter finds you and your families well; a Friday update for you as always.


I would like to welcome our new team of twenty-four, Year 10, Peer Mentors.  As usual, competition for the role was fierce, and we would like to say well done to all those who applied.  Our peer mentors will be taking part in a training and team-building workshop run by learning mentors Ms Elvey and Mr Rolfe.  Each Year 7 class will be linked with three peer mentors who will help out one registration a week. They’ll also be offering a weekly drop-in and helping with a variety of clubs. They are a particularly keen group and come with many ideas of their own, please do look out for some new peer mentor-led projects and activities this year.


It is always exciting when students are willing to give their time and energy to helping younger students and their school community.  Experience has shown us that building up links and friendships between year groups can have really positive and long-lasting benefits, I’m sure this year will be no exception; I am excited to see how this fabulous team of peer mentors develop.  


Congratulations to our Peer mentors for 2024:  Veselina Maytrovska, Shanay Wogan, Jada Arthur, Habiba Ali, Diana Sofia, Alexandra Cocos, Kiril Kucalov, Ikram Abdullahi, Alexander Wild, Natalie Kearns, Iman Fatima, Aaliyah Mehmood, Mia Tadla, Zayn Bham, Nusayba Medjbour, Amna Yasir, Mithula Mathiyalagan, Karina Palkowska, Aaminah Rehman, Charlie Tardelli-Thompson, Alayna Nunhuck, Sakina Shah, Zahra Turkmani and Haleema Ahmed.


Mr Eley, Deputy Headteacher, has led assemblies this week on the important topic of mental health, where he talked through the Roman Kemp campaign Here4U; parents can watch a video with more information about the campaign here.  There is also a resource for parents on how they can manage their own mental health, called the Parents’ Guide to Looking After Your Mental Health, that Mr Eley would like me to share on his behalf, here.


During registration on Tuesday, we practised our ‘Protect’ (Lockdown) drill.  Form tutors discussed the drill  with students beforehand and our Bridge team supported students with additional needs.  I was pleased to see students responding in a calm and appropriate manner throughout the drill.  I am sure you will agree this is a very important procedure to practise but one we very much hope we will never have to deploy.  


With some of our Year 8 & 9 classicists on tour in Bath this week, Ms Ahmet was keen to share that our Classics ‘Kelmscotties’ have been fantastic on the Bath Residential trip. Students have been eager to find out more about this historic city, and consolidate their knowledge of Ancient Roman civilisation.  Students spent the first day with a guided tour of Bath, followed by an exploration of the stunning Bath Abbey. After a well-rested break at the YHA hostel, the group swiftly headed to the Roman Baths to learn more about the social and religious significance of the site.  Students strengthened their Latin language by decoding the inscriptions on the tombstones.  As our students learnt about the importance of supplication, they too were rewarded with wonderful weather.  I have enjoyed the regular updates being posted on both our school and Classics department ‘X’ ‘Twitter’ platforms.  Definitely worth a look @KelmscottSchool  @KelmClassDept 


All of our Year 9 students took part in a workshop about the Holocaust, focusing specifically on Kindertransport in preparation for the Holocaust Memorial Day (27th of January).  The sessions went really well and the students engaged in a mature and sensitive way.  Many students participated actively with positive contributions.  


I am always keen to receive feedback such as this received from The National Holocaust Centre and Museum: 'Lots of the students thanked me individually as I went round collecting things up at the end which was really appreciated. They did the school proud.'  


On Wednesday, some of our Climate Ambassadors completed the first part of their Carbon Literacy Training.  The training will enable our students to develop their understanding of climate change and grow their leadership skills.  Students particularly enjoyed learning how to calculate the amount of carbon stored in the trees in Epping Forest. 


On Wednesday, this week's basketball fixtures saw the Year 10 & 11 boys play a fantastic, and very closely contested, match versus Leytonstone School, with a narrow win for Kelmscott 45-43.  The team now face South Chingford in the semi-finals next week. Our Year 7 girls' basketball team will face Lammas in their semi-final match next week.  Congratulations to both teams, we wish them the very best of luck.


Representatives from our girls' football teams delivered what was a very polished and impressive pitch to the senior leadership team this week, as they continue to work hard to fund a new girls' football kit.   It is clear that these athletes are very passionate about their sport and the school they represent. 


The first of various themed days in The Pantry takes place on Monday 29th January at lunchtime.  This occasion is ‘Veganuary’.  Coinciding with our commitments to sustainability and the Eco Schools Charter, there will be a range of delicious vegan-only meals on offer including Roasted Vegetables & Quinoa, Vegan Meatballs and a selection of Jacket Potatoes & vegan fillings.  The Pantry will soon be launching a meat-free day, once a week, to continue our work with climate change and healthy schools.


For our Year 7 parents, as per the message you received yesterday, a reminder that the Year 7 Progress Evening will be held on Thursday 8th February from 4.30-7pm.  This is an important opportunity to receive some useful feedback on the progress of your child and build relationships with your child’s teachers; crucial as students move through the school.


Year 7 students will receive a form on Monday to make appointments with their subject teachers.  Please speak to your child about this and encourage them to make their appointments as soon as possible.  Thank you in advance for your support with this. 


Finally, well done to the following students who topped the reward point charts for their year groups last week, with a particular mention for our Chess champion, Linus Hopkins who amassed fifty-nine points this week, the most in the school – keep up the good work.


  • Year  7 Samuel Burnside with 41 points 

  • Year  8 Linus Hopkins with 59 points    

  • Year  9 Luca Miron with 35 points    

  • Year 10 Alexander Wild with 20 points

  • Year 11 Rosa Grant with 32 points


With every good wish, yours ever,


Mr Sam Jones 

Headteacher 

 


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