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Headteacher's Blog 6-10-23

Sporting fixtures really kicked off this week which included a great win for our Year 9 rugby team

It has been another busy week in school with lots going. What is pleasing to report is that our students continue to step up and meet the high expectations we have asked of them. There is an excellent climate for learning which the visitors on our open morning this week all commented upon.  We know building this positive climate gives our students the best foundation from which to build their learning. We will continue to work to ensure that all our student benefit from this day in, day out.

Today we held a lockdown drill. The scenario was based around an intruder on the site and required staff and students to ensure they were inside a room, remain quiet and stay there until they were told it is safe to do otherwise. The drill was supervised by a number of our staff and operated very smoothly. The students managed the situation very well, following the instructions given in a range of briefings very effectively and maturely. We have some lessons we have learned which we will use to update our procedures and will feed these back to staff and Governors.  Of course, we hope that we will never be in a position to have to carry out such a lockdown procedure for real. Drills such as this give us the confidence that we can keep our students and staff safe should we ever have to do so.

On Monday we had 32 employers / colleges / 6th forms / universities attend our Ask the Professional Event. The event provided Year 11 students the opportunity to ask employers about what they are looking for in new recruits, what makes an application form / good candidate stand out for them and what a new recruit could expect to do in their first few years in the organisation. Our Year 11s were also able to ask colleges, 6th Forms and universities about the courses they offered, and the application processes involved in applying to their institutions. It was lovely to see so many ex-Severn Vale School students returning with their employers or 6th Forms and being able to pass on their advice to current students. Thanks to the students for engaging so positively and to our Careers team for organising the event.

Yesterday evening we had our Year 7 Tutor Parent Evening. This was our first in-person parent evening since before the pandemic!! It was a pleasure to be able to meet parents face-to-face. It is our intention that all parent evenings this year will operate in this way. We are finalising plans and will circulate them to parents in the new year. If any parents who attended last night would like to feedback their thoughts, they can email me as normal.

As mentioned previously, this week also saw our second Open morning. This saw nearly 150 Year 6 students and their parents visit the school to see it in operation on a normal morning. It was a pleasure to show the school off and to allow visitors to see what a great offer we have at Severn Vale.

We had some great news this week for the DofE award scheme. They confirmed that we have now reached 200 completed awards since we started running the DofE scheme. Our first hundred awards took 4 ½ years to achieve; the second hundred has only taken 2 ½ years. DofE is a great scheme for young people and I know that those who participate get a great deal from it. If you would like your child to participate, please contact Mr Higgs who leads all things DofE at Severn Vale.

Sporting fixtures kicked off for most year groups this week including:

  • Year 7 Rubgy – the Year 7 boys played their first fixture this week against Holmleigh Park. It was a fantastic fixture with our boys running hard, tackling brilliantly, playing for each other and most importantly enjoying the game. The result was a 50 – 0 victory for Severn Vale.

  • Year 8 Hockey – the Year 8s played their first fixture of the season versus Denmark Road. A hard-fought game played in great spirit resulted in a 2 – 0 defeat. There were strong performances all around with Player of the Match being awarded to Kara N

  • Year 9 Hockey – the Year 9s also began their season with a fixture against Denmark Road. It was another tight game that saw Denmark Road emerge victorious by 3 – 0. Player of the Match was Millie S.

  • Year 9 Rugby – the Year 9s began their season with a home fixture against Holmleigh Park. In a tight and physical game, the lead exchanged hands several times. Severn Vale emerged victorious with Player of the Match Jayden D sealing the victory 34 - 26 with two late tries.

  • Year 10 Rugby – the Year 10s also began their season with a tough away fixture versus Holmleigh Park. The boys were missing some key players due to injuries but others stepped up, with a number playing out of position. Despite playing their hearts out, the game ended in defeat 30 – 7. The game was played in the perfect spirit exemplified by Player of the Match Deshay T.

  • Year 11 Girls Football - the U16 girls progressed to the third round of the FA Schools Cup with a dominant 11 – 0 victory against Kingstone Academy. There were goals aplenty, with 4 for Elle M and 3 for Grace. Player of the Match was awarded to Evelyn H for an outstanding defensive performance and a second-half wonder goal!

Also on the sporting front, the PE department is excited to announce that they have launched a KS3 SV basketball club. Mr Blacklock is leading the club, and he is really excited to be working with students who have a love for basketball and those who want to experience a new sport! We have signed a deal to work in partnership with Gloucester Kings Basketball club where they will come to school and lead a block of training sessions. If your child enjoys basketball, ask them to see Mr Blacklock to get more details. 

As always, I include my weekly reminder about Free School Meals eligibility. If your financial circumstances have changed, your child may be eligible for Free School Meals. If you click on this link you will find guidance on the eligibility criteria and the application process. It's a quick process and we are notified of all FSM entitlements by Gloucestershire County Council each Monday. I would urge you to take a look if you think you may benefit from financial assistance. 

The weather this weekend looks unbelievable. I do hope you enjoy it.

Kind regards,

Richard Johnson