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  • Writer's pictureMr S. Jones

Headteacher's Weekly Update - 3rd March 2023

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


It has been a typically busy week in school. A group of students from years 7, 8, 9 and 10 enjoyed a Drama workshop on Wednesday with the Trestle Theatre Company; do take a look at our Twitter feed to see some photographs from this engaging event and lookout for the drama clubs devised piece of masked theatre, in July.


A group of students attended the ‘Year 10 Introduction to Oxbridge’ held at Highams Park School on Tuesday. The event gave our students the opportunity to further their knowledge about selective universities in more detail. The group engaged in critical thinking activities helping them to reflect on their own interests and how to explore them further.


We then hosted the Waltham Forest Badminton tournament on Wednesday afternoon. Home court advantage must have played in our favour, as the under 16 team, consisting of, Manasseh Sachithanantham 11K, Andy Xu 11M, Habib Arbi 11K and Leon Capili 10C, took the gold medal with a good win over Heathcote School. The under 14 team, consisting of, Zayn Bham 9K, Hasan Jamal 9O, Ayaas Asghar 9O and Anthony Ungureanu 9K, took the silver medal, narrowly losing in the final to Chingford. Well done to all involved, and thank you to the PE Department for hosting the tournament.


Today saw a multitude of activities taking place for World Book Day, with quizzes, competitions and other activities, for students to engage in. World Book Day is a charity that aims to give every child their own book, and to encourage children to read for pleasure. This week we ran reading-based activities in the library. Students also received a £1 book token that allows them to purchase a £1 book that would usually be full price, or get £1 off any book or audiobook worth £2.99 or more. We have a very strong reading culture in the school, including our Tutor Reading Programme, that sees every student in the school read to, for twenty minutes each morning. Of course, reading is such an important life-skill, so shining a spotlight on books today, was very important.


Also today, a group of Year 9 students visited the Globe Theatre in London – where they enjoyed a dynamic 90-minute production of The Tempest on the iconic stage. Created especially for young people and designed to help students understand and develop knowledge on how a Shakespearian play is performed. Playing Shakespeare with Deutsche Bank.


Next week will see an abundance of events for International Women’s Day, Wednesday 8th March. Rather than just have events on the one day, we are pleased to be extending them across the following week(s). We are excited to see, and get involved with, the different activities and events. The first activity is a creative writing competition, responding to a quote. I have attached details to this letter, perhaps this might be a good activity for students to engage with this weekend?


Last week I informed you that the Year 8 Progress Evening, originally calendared for Thursday 16th March would have to be moved, as it fell on one of the next strike days. In our haste, we moved it to the following week, Thursday 23rd March. We have since realised that this will be the first or second day of Ramadan, which will prove problematic for many of our families as they will be looking forward to breaking their fast at that time. We will go back to the calendar, and I will confirm the new date for you in next week’s letter. My apologies for the confusion here.


Attached to this letter is an article about the potential dangers of vaping. I know this is an emerging problem for schools and families across the land. Like all schools, we have experienced isolated issues; these have been dealt with firmly but fairly, as always. The article is quite a long one, but I would recommend families reading it and discussing the dangers with your child.


One of our partner schools in the West Walthamstow Partnership, to which we belong, are offering some support to Kelmscott families, by means of a course they are running. The course follows Solihull principles and is designed to help parents better understand the behaviour their child is demonstrating. The Solihull approach is excellent and I would recommend this course wholeheartedly. There are only twelve places available, please get in contact with us via the info@kelmscott.waltham.sch.uk email address if you are interested in finding out more, and one of the team will contact you.


Please see this leaflet containing some important guidance from the The Waltham Forest Behaviour, Attendance and Children Missing Education Service (BACME). Regular school attendance is an important part of giving children the best possible opportunities. One of Waltham Forest’s top priorities is for all children to enjoy learning, experience success and realise their full potential.


Sign up for our exciting end of year trips to Adventure Island Southend, for year groups 7-10, goes live on Monday; you will receive a separate communication regarding this. For this trip and all other trip opportunities, it is important that you adhere to the deadlines stated in communications; this allows our trips and visits team to carry out all the necessary administration in order for the trips to run, including: monitoring sign-up, bookings, payments, risk assessments and staffing. At Kelmscott we pride ourselves on the wide variety of educational visits we provide, across the academic year, but we rely on your help with meeting deadlines for these to run efficiently. As these opportunities are now managed solely through the MyEd app, please ensure that you have 'allowed' notifications for messages, so that when you are sent a trip form or information, you will receive an alert allowing you to respond quickly to this; we would not want any student to miss out on a trip opportunity. Thank you for your cooperation and support here.


Finally, congratulations to Isabella Ryan in 10M and Mor Kane in 7L who were joint top of the rewards points charts last week with twenty-nine each – keep up the good work.


Yours sincerely


Mr Sam Jones

Headteacher

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