Headteacher’s Blog – September 2017

It’s a pleasure to be able to write my first Headteacher’s Blog to you as parents. The new term has begun and we are already close to completing a whole cycle of the fortnightly timetable. On behalf of all staff at the school, I would like to thank you for all you have done to support your son/daughter in beginning the new school year in such a positive way.

My first fortnight as the school’s Headteacher has been spent mainly with students. I have now led assemblies to each of years 7 to 11 and will speak to our sixth form students next week. The theme of each assembly was to share with your son/daughter what they can expect of me as their new Headteacher and to reflect on our core school values that will underpin the work we do together over the coming years to move forward together. If you haven’t yet spoken to them about my key messages, I would encourage you to do so. I have spent a large amount of time in lessons, sitting with students and sharing in the excitement, challenge and, on occasions, frustration, of learning something new. The highlight of the past fortnight for me has been eating lunch with our students each day and spending time getting to know each of them and sharing in their many achievements. It is easy to take for granted something which we see every day, but our students are a fantastic group of people who bring so much energy, good humour, commitment and purpose to our school.

Whilst our students achieve a great deal in school, I am always amazed by their staggering successes outside of school and last year we created a way for you to share these successes with us. On Parent Frog there is a site titled ‘Bournside Brilliance’ which contains a short online form that you can complete to let us know if your son/daughter has achieved something brilliant outside school that you feel deserves recognition inside school. There is also the option of uploading a few pictures, if appropriate. This gives your son/daughter’s tutor, Head of Year and me, the opportunity to speak with your son/daughter about this and congratulate them.

It was great to see so many of you attend the year 12, year 8 and year 9 Information Evenings last week and just to remind you that the equivalent for year 11, 10 and 7 will be held this coming week on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, respectively, each beginning at 6:30pm. These Information Evenings last around 45 minutes and are a great opportunity for you to hear key messages relevant to your son/daughter’s year group and to meet their tutor and discuss anything that is specific to your son/daughter. One of the themes discussed at each of the Information Evenings is the importance of good communication between school and home. If for any reason you do wish to make contact with a member for staff at the school, please take a look at the relevant section on our website (www.bournside.gloucs.sch.uk/contacting-staff), which outlines a range of ways to do this and the contact details for our staff.

As is always the case at Bournside, the term ahead is an action-packed one, full of additional events for students and parents alike and I would like to draw your attention to a few of these:

European Day of Languages (Tuesday 26th September)

Please ask your son/daughter to look out for lots of exciting opportunities to try a different language on this day.

Year 7 Parent/Teacher Consultation Evening (PTC) (Thursday 28th September)

This event offers all parents of year 7 students the opportunity to come and meet their son/daughter’s tutor for five minutes and discuss how they have settled in to their new school. Appointments can be booked, from 6:00pm on Monday 18th September, using the Parents Evening System, which can be found on Parent Frog. There is a second year 7 PTC later this year, which will offer parents the opportunity to spend five minutes with each of their son/daughter’s subject teachers.

Main School Open Evening (Thursday 5th October)

Whilst the intended audience for this event is parents of prospective year 5 and year 6 students, in order to prepare effectively, the school day will finish at 1:30pm for all students. A separate letter regarding this will be sent to all parents very shortly.

Careers Fair Evening (Thursday 12th October)

To support students in years 9 – 13, we have invited over 60 different organisations to come and join us on site to offer independent advice and guidance to students and parents regarding higher education, apprenticeships, employment and other training. This bi-annual event is always very well attended and offers an excellent opportunity for informal and relaxed conversation with experts across a wide range of providers. A letter will shortly be sent to all parents of students in year 9 – 13, with further details of this event.

Year 7 Music Evening (Tuesday 17th October)

Our first term comes to a close with an opportunity to hear from a large number of year 7 musicians. Mr Clift (Head of Music) will provide further details nearer the time.

Thank you for your continued support of our school and I look forward to seeing you over the coming year, whether it be at the school gate or at one of our events.

Best wishes,

Gareth Burton