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Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School

Floyd Footnotes

s y a D y t i r Cha

Issue 17 | April 2014

This year we have had very exciting, unique and successful charity days. We raised over ÂŁ2750 and all of the money has gone towards the Alfan Foundation, a charity set up by the parents of two of our students in the school. The Foundation, a non-profit organisation aims to improve the welfare of children in Ghana. We aim to keep a strong connection with this charity so that we can build a relationship between the Floyd and various schools and orphanages in this West African country with a population of over 24 million.

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Charity Days The two days were jam-packed with activities, from the raffle and bake sale (which sold out within 15 minutes!) to gunge the teacher and the talent show. Everyone donated so generously to make these events such a success. We also collected children’s books to send out directly to Ghana via the Foundation. Lots of students and staff dressed up as their favourite characters from children’s books for the mufti day on the final day of term. The best dressed student prize was won by Anthony Reeve, 11M as Toad, whilst the staff prize was jointly won by Mr and Mrs Merrow-Smith, who dressed up as Mary Poppins and Bert. Having the students of Pebble Brook School join in with the fun has been a wonderful experience that has again connected the two schools. The Year 12’s intend to strengthen this relationship in the next academic year. We would like to thank everyone for their donations which have helped raise an amazing total in just two days! Let’s keep this going and aim bigger for next year. Thank you also to all those who helped both with the preparation and on the days themselves. Becky Sharp, 6A2 – Chair of the Charity Committee

Who’s Who

- The Trust & Governing Body

The school has always had a Governing Body, and since gaining academy status in July 2011 also a Board of Trustees. In practice, except where legal requirements preclude this the Governing Body take responsibility for implementing the strategic direction of the school, its financial affairs and the appointment of senior staff, whilst using its committees to monitor and advise with regard to the areas of audit, curriculum, finance, human resources, premises and public relations. The Governing Body can have a maximum of 23 members, all bar the Headteacher being appointed for a 4 year period under the following categories:

• • • • • •

A minimum of 7 Parents 3 Staff Headteacher Up to 8 Appointed Up to 1 Local Authority Up to 3 Co-Opted

The aim when appointing governors in the appointed and co-opted categories is to ensure a range of skills, such as legal, financial, human resources, etc. are available to call upon. We have recently appointed a governor with a professional background who is also an Old Floydian. I am pleased to say that to date we have been fortunate in having individuals with varied experiences volunteer to work with the school, often for more than one period of

office, and always giving freely, considerable amounts of their time behind the scenes. Should anyone have queries, concerns or a contribution they would like to discuss, the Governors can be contacted either directly via the school or email at:, and a full list of the current members of the Trust and Governing Body are available on the school’s website at all times at http://www. page/?title=Governors&pid=343 Gaynor Bull, Chair of Trustees & Governing Body

The summer term is now under way and for many students a serious set of examinations are imminent. I am very impressed by how hard our students are working at the moment and at how committed they are to all that the school is doing. Parents will know that we regularly acknowledge contributions to the school or excellent work with “achievement awards”. We also recognise episodes of poor work or bad behaviour with “student concerns”. Looking back over the past two terms we have noted that our students have been given 15255 achievement awards (15 per student) and 1774 concerns (just under 2 per student). This very positive picture is a reflection of just how much our students are doing to make this such a flourishing community of excellence.

Website refreshing

We are making some changes to our website over the next few weeks. There will be a redesign of the general appearance and some improved changes to the functionality. We have produced a new series of short video clips as well. Many students helped us out with the filming. The production team shot hours of interviews and background pictures but the final pieces will be about five minutes long. We were delighted that they were able to capture some images of the beautiful blossom on the trees in one of our courtyards.

Easter GCSE Revision classes

We ran a very comprehensive revision programme over the Easter holidays with at least one class taking place every day of the holidays except Good Friday. Teachers willingly gave up some of their break to work with Year 11 students and the students themselves turned up in large numbers. It has been very encouraging to see how hard our Year 11’s are working at the moment. They have put themselves in a strong position to get a very good set of results in the summer.

Staff training

As part of our training day at the start of term we participated in some workshops led by the Teenage and Adolescent Mental Health Team. We have found in recent years that more and more teenagers are developing a range of mental health illnesses. It appears to be a national phenomenon. We can all speculate on possible reasons or causes but there does not appear to be a single root cause. We are doing all we can to support students suffering these illnesses but we have to recognise that we are educationalists, not health experts. The best service that we can offer is to direct our students to those who are the experts in these areas. Our workshops helped to establish relationships with the health service and we also had some training on helping young people cope with examination stresses.

Examination season

Public examinations were under way almost as soon as term began. International Baccalaureate exams are first. All the students’ coursework and Extended Essays were completed on time and despatched to various parts of the world for marking or moderation. IB students get their final results in July so they can start their summer holidays without worrying about how well they will do and whether or not they will get the university place that they really want. We are reminded of the international nature of the IB when we have to arrange invigilation for Bank Holiday Monday – the organisation takes no account of such things as national holidays. GCSE examinations begin in the middle of May and AS and A level exams follow on soon after. This year for the first time there have been no modular exams taken in January. The consequence is that A level and GCSE students are faced with having to do more exams in the summer than students in the recent past. We are confident that they

have been well prepared and that the examination preparation workshops they have experienced will leave them well equipped for the extra revision that will be required.

June timetable

We are planning to continue our tradition of restructuring the school timetable after May half term. This gives us an opportunity to move Year 9 students onto their Year 10 programme a few weeks early. They can drop the subjects that they have not chosen to study at GCSE and can begin their GCSE courses in the subjects that they have chosen. A number of other lessons will happen at different times in the week but otherwise the programme for all other year groups will remain the same.

Parent survey

I recently wrote to parents summarising the comprehensive feedback that we received in our biennial parent survey. I will not repeat the analysis here but will point readers to the section of our website where we record letters that have been sent to parents. We will make the complete report available when we have replaced our “portal”.

An important date

We are holding our annual Prize Giving event and our summer concert at The Waterside Theatre in Aylesbury on the afternoon and evening of July 10th. We will therefore have about twelve hundred seats available for both occasions. All parents will be very welcome to join us for these celebrations. Further details will follow. Stephen Box, Headteacher

Cross Country Experience 2014 saw the school take part in a Cross Country competition at High Wycombe. It was an interesting day. The minibus took off at around 11:15 holding the nervous and eager Floydians who were to compete. We arrived in plenty of time, and were able to set up camp in a nice little spot under a tree. Within five minutes the gazebo was up, the rain was chucking it down and everyone was huddling together to try and keep warm. Unfortunately it wasn’t our day because the gazebo almost blew away and broke. The team kept their spirits high using their FLP (Floyd Learning Power) and collaborated and persevered through it all. The only things protecting us from the elements were thick coats, the tree and big black bin bags (which I found comfy to sit on). You can probably imagine that as a result of the wet weather it was really muddy, so most of us wore boots in the race, although a brave few decided spikes would be better suited (not really). The course was 3.5km and there were a few hills, a river and a bridge which I wasn’t expecting even though it is called ‘Cross Country’. Everyone did brilliantly, finishing the race and surprising themselves. I finished 10th out of 120 and managed to qualify for the next stage. This next stage meant running for our County. The race was at Donnington Park, the course was longer and tougher and there were over 40 counties competing. I managed to come 233rd out of about 340 junior boys. I was proud of that. Next year maybe we will see some other Floydians finish in the top positions. As a result of the experience I have been inspired to join the Milton Keynes Athletic Club and I will be more prepared for next year’s competitions. Corey Moore, 9A

SPORTS HALL OPENING On Friday 28th March, James Buckland officially opened the Sports Hall in front of students, staff, governors and invited guests. James, an Old Floydian who also has a child in Year 7, is currently the forwards and defence coach at London Scottish having previously played at a professional level for Leicester Tigers, London Wasps and London Irish in the Aviva Premiership. In his playing days James also represented England at Under 21 and Saxons level. During the opening ceremony, Stephen Box, Headteacher reflected on the journey the school has gone through in recent years with regard to raising the funds to build the new facility. James, unveiled a plaque commemorating the occasion and spoke

about the important role that sport has in developing character as well as maintaining personal fitness. Everyone was able to see the sports hall in use with a group of sixth form students, having donned their whites, demonstrating their bowling and batting skills in the cricket nets, whilst a PE class was also underway using another area of the available space. The sports hall has been in use since late February and apart from daily use in the PE curriculum, it is also being used for extra-curricular activities. Lunchtime basketball, netball and badminton sessions have been particularly popular with students, whilst even the staff are getting in on the act with five–a-side-football on a Friday when students have headed home! Ian Bryant, Assistant Head

Sport Relief The sports ambassadors worked hard to raise over £300 for Sports Relief on Friday 28th March. There was a chance to beat the goalie, putt a golf ball onto a £5 note and get as many baskets in basketball as possible, all to win an Easter egg. A few members of 8H ran a mile and there was some three legged races going around school too. Much fun was had by all.

The Netball Season There has been excellent attendance at training this year much helped by the new all weather surface and the addition of the sports hall. All years have developed their skills and started to play some really good netball. Girls from Years 9 to 11 have been actively involved in coaching of the lower year teams and they have been able to use this for their GCSE PE practical. This season SHFGS netball teams have been increasingly improving and climbing up the tables, with each year group producing good results in the District finals. This tournament is one where all schools in Aylesbury Vale gather to compete for first place, and prior to this each team must play one another in order to be placed in either the A or B pool. This year has proved to be a success with each of our year groups placing well and winning most of their matches.

YEAR 7 NETBALL TOURNAMENT After a shaky start to the netball season and then playing some tough sides in the league, the Year 7 netball squad (now 20+ strong) had been training hard and were committed to entering two teams into the end of season tournament. The ‘A team’ played some outstanding netball, really starting to come together as a team. They won all of their matches and drew with Royal Latin; an excellent run through the tournament. Overall, they finished second in their pool (by only one goal for – they had even drawn on goal difference); an excellent result for a hard working team. The ‘B team’ had not had so much experience at playing together in the league, however, they played really well, setting good solid foundations for playing together next season and came a respectable third in their pool. Congratulations to all the girls involved, I was very proud of their hard work and excellent sportsmanship, and look forward to seeing them progress further in the future.

PERSONAL SUCCESS This season my team entered the England National Club Competition (South Region). After qualifying and then winning the season, we came out as South Region National Champions. The next stage after winning the tournament is to travel to a sports village in Sheffield where we will compete against the top teams around the country in order to be named the best team in England for our age group. Alongside this, I was chosen to go as a player from North County Academy to play at a Regional Festival in Chichester. This is where a lot of scouts will be selecting certain players to go forth and trial for England’s regional teams. I have also been selected to attend a Residential Summer Camp, to experience a high-intensity, high performance-training environment, which will be run by Elly Moore an England netball coach. Sarah Flower, 9C

Mrs R Selby, Faculty Leader for PE

Sarah Flower, 9C

Notification of Results Summer Examinations – Student Authorisation

Remark & Access to Script Requests

If you wish any other person (including family members) to collect your results on your behalf, you must give your written authorisation to the Examinations Officer, Mrs Damoo, before results day. Without a signed letter from you we are not allowed to release results to any third party (this includes your parents/carers or relatives). The nominated person must produce some form of ID on the day.

If after receiving your results you wish to have a remark or request your script back you must see the Examinations Officer as soon as possible (within 5 days if your university place is dependent). There are deadlines involved in this process and late applications will not be accepted.

If you want your results posted, please provide a First Class stamped and addressed envelope and hand it to Mrs Damoo in the Examinations Office. If you provide an A4 envelope please remember to provide a large First Class stamp. If incorrect postage is not attached we cannot forward your results. No results will be given out by telephone, fax or email under any circumstance.

Non-priority requests will be dealt with on our return to school in September.

GCSE Results Thursday 14th August 2014 • Year 13 only @ 9.00 a.m. in the Hall • Year 12 @ 10.00 a.m. in the Hall GCSE Results Thursday 21st August 2014 • 10.00 a.m. in the Hall Results that have not been collected will be retained in school for collection at a later date.

Cold War Berlin

On Thursday 20th March we arrived at school for 4:00 a.m. to catch a coach to the airport. We’d all been excited for this trip for a very long time, and the day had finally arrived. After the coach was packed full of our luggage and ourselves, still half asleep, we set off for Luton Airport to catch the plane to Berlin! We arrived in Berlin at about 10.00 a.m. and set off on our tour straight away. We were met by Andrew and Philip, our tour guides from Anglia Tours, who had both served in the armed forces in Berlin during the Cold War. The first thing we did was to visit the Allied Forces Museum in West Berlin, where they have exhibitions on what life was like in that part of Berlin when the Berlin Wall was up. We learned about the music, hobbies and lifestyles of the West Berliners. We then visited Potsdam, where the Potsdam Conference was held at the end of the war, and the Glienicke Bridge where the East traded prisoners of war and spies with the West. Our tour guides told us about their experiences as we sat by the river – we were lucky that the weather was good! That evening we visited the Reichstag, the German Parliament. We went up to the viewing gallery, which provides a great vista of the whole of Berlin. It was very interesting to see the divide between East and West, as well as all the landmarks like the TV Tower and Brandenburg Gate. We finally got to the hostel, tired and hungry from a day’s travelling and ate dinner, before going to bed. We all tried to get the best night’s sleep possible as we knew the next day would be even more jam-packed. After breakfast the next morning, we set off by the S-Bahn over ground train to start our walking tour of

Berlin. We visited the Soviet War Memorial, Brandenburg Gate, Holocaust Memorial, the bunker area where Adolf Hitler spent his last days, Checkpoint Charlie and many other famous sites linked to the Cold War. It was great to see the things we had been learning about in class in real life, and it really helped contribute to my knowledge of the topic. After dinner that night, we went bowling, which was a great, fun night out with friends. When we returned to the hotel we went straight to sleep, only then realising how tired and worn out we were as we had not stopped all day!

brilliant time filled with new knowledge and had become so much closer to those that we did not really know too well before the trip. I had an amazing time thanks to Mrs Pilkington, Mrs Kratt, Mr Bryant and our Anglia Tour Guides. I am so, so glad that I went. Emma Thorpe, 10A

On the final day we checked out of the hostel and boarded the bus for our last day of activities. We visited a Stasi Prison, a great eye-opener to the way that the East treated their prisoners, and another museum before shopping. After this we went to the East Side Gallery – the largest, intact stretch of the Berlin Wall that is still standing. It is covered in great artwork by artists, invited to decorate the wall after the rest was demolished. That evening, we boarded our flight home, tired and exhausted. We had all had a



Oh we do like to be beside the seaside..... but a lot of it has fallen into the sea! The Year 12 Geography field trip to Swanage and the Jurassic coast is always a popular trip because the coastal scenery of this area is stunning but this year evidence of the winter storms was truly impressive. On one morning we walked past some engineering works stabilising the sea front, saw some crushed beach huts and guest houses perched precariously on top of crumbling cliffs. The beach transects and data collection all worked well in the sunshine. In the afternoon

Studland sand dunes provided a chance to use the clinometers, anemometers, quadrants, soil probes and ranging poles. All the soft sand had been stripped off the beach, the embryo dunes had gone and there was a sandy cliff where the sea had been attacking the yellow dunes...will the National Trust allow Studland beach to disappear as the sea levels rise? Hard Engineering was the theme for the next morning as we travelled to Weymouth and saw the award winning Newton Cove coast protection scheme and efforts to stop the sea breaching Chesil Beach. Back to sketch Durdle Door,


Stair Hole and Lulworth Cove in the sunshine before fossil hunting in Kimmeridge Bay. A nearest neighbour analysis on the following day in Swanage town centre meant that this group are now very well prepared for their AS skills paper and the IB geographers for their Internal Assessment. ‘We had a great fieldtrip and wanted to thank Mr Buckley and Mrs Stonham for taking us’

Oh we


“I thought the trip was AMAZING!” Eve, 7M

On Tuesday 7th January 2014 the Science Department took 151 Year 7 students to the interactive science park that is @Bristol. Here are comments that were made by the students on their return:

“I really enjoyed the outing. I learnt a lot from the two shows, which were all about space. All the exhibits were interactive, so it was an especially fun way to learn… was a shame we couldn’t stay longer.” Freya, 7C “I enjoyed looking around the museum with my friends because it was interactive and fun. I also enjoyed the rocket presentation because they got us involved.” Rosie, 7M “I enjoyed the huge amount of freedom we got because it meant we could go back and look at something again and again.” Niah, 7M “I liked the way the school let us have our independence to look at what we find most interesting.” Matthew, 7C “I really enjoyed the trip because you got to take part in things and you didn’t have to just sit and read something.” Nishka, 7C

do like t

“I enjoyed the Aardman animations…” Finlay, 7C

“I really enjoyed the planetarium. I learnt a lot but it was also really beautiful. I loved that we could go and look at the exhibits on our own. I also liked the rocket workshop because I loved it when they blew things up! Basically. I loved everything!” Amber, 7M “There were lots of hands-on experiments with water, such as a pump, a toilet flush, even an Archimedes Screw. I really enjoyed myself. Definitely recommended!” Jonathan, 7C “My favourite bit was the water contraption where there was a massive hamster wheel that powered the water!” Ellen, 7M Some of these children had such fun pumping the water by running in the hamster wheel that I feel some of our parents should put this system into use somehow at home, to generate electricity perhaps! Peter Merrow-Smith, Teacher of Biology

o be bes ide the seaside .. S WA NAG


“My favourite part was when we learned about rocket science and how scientists launch rockets….during the show there were some extremely loud bangs when hydrogen was lit but the whole thing was very entertaining.” Keira, 7C

“I really enjoyed the interactive exhibits, like the magnetic sand and the shadow freezer. They were fun to use and very original – and they each had an explanation of how they worked.” Hannah, 7M

E-Safety Information We were delighted to welcome back representatives of McAfee International Ltd and PC Graham Briggenshaw to our second, annual online safety for parents’ event in the last week of the Spring term.

Cashless Catering The new system, which has been running since our return after February half term is now well and truly established. It would be fair to say that in the first few days both students and staff found adjusting to the new till equipment, thumb scanners and pin pads a little strange. Gladly however, this has been short lived. The process of paying for purchases at breakfast, morning break and lunch has speeded up and that is reflected in a gradual increase in the both the number of students eating in the canteen and the number of transactions recorded. A typical week at this time shows us:

• 630+ students and staff using the service • 3800+ transactions taking place • +60% funded by online payments. Apart from providing parents/carers the opportunity to review what their offspring are purchasing for consumption, the system also enables us to monitor a range of statistics that we can use to improve the catering service in terms of the range of products offered and meal deals that provide a discount. We are also looking at different equipment to improve our presentation and fitting a free chilled water dispenser in the dining area. Ian Bryant, Assistant Head (Support Operations)

EXTRA, EXTRA... What do you at lunch time? For many it is a time to eat some food, talk to friends and generally relax prior to starting the next part of a busy day. Here in school however many students use a large part of the time involved in extra-curricular activities.

Art, Chess, Choirs of different persuasions, Dance of various types, Debating, Knitting, Music across the full range of instruments, Science, Ukulele, Warhammer 40K, etc. all compete for participants with Athletics,

Badminton, Basketball, Boccia, Football, Netball, Tennis, and of course additional support sessions across all areas of the curriculum. Each year sees the range of opportunities on offer develop as individuals with a particular interest decide it is time to spread this wider. Every club or activity relies on time given freely by both staff and students. One thing is certain, there is no time to be bored!

After Mr Box’s welcome, the evening began with a presentation on the dangers of so called legal highs - synthetic euphoric stimulants, often purchased online - to raise awareness among parents of the prevalence, dangers and availability of these substances. Assistant Head of Sixth Form, Kathryn Chapman, outlined the issues and advised parents on the serious effects of these substances. McAfee’s safety experts then explained how they deliver three key messages to children on: • Cyber security • Safety • Ethics and how parents can support their children’s safe online presence. Key messages included: • Why we should ensure that our wifi is secure; • Why we should never browse the internet from a computer’s admin enabled account; • How to avoid keyloggers and what they are; • What Botnet is and how to avoid this type of hijack of your computer; • Download ‘site advisor’ which lets you know how safe a site is. If you don’t know what some or any of these are then please follow the links below but even more importantly, come along next year. For all of us, the mantra should be: ‘Stop. Think. Connect.’ But we must only connect if we know something is safe! Below are some links that you may find useful: • • • • • Jeanette Cochrane, Deputy Headteacher

Parents Society Welcome back to the final term of this year - and the busiest for our students and their families! This term is an important one for the Society as we race towards achieving our fundraising target for the year of £10,000. We would like to thank everyone who has supported our fundraising efforts so far this year, which will certainly help us to achieve this. Our Quiz Night held in March was the major event for the Spring Term, and was attended by 130 participants – so thank you to all the parents, students and friends who made the evening such fun. As well as some fiendishly hot questions, the food provided by the school catering team had a Mexican theme, and the quiz team names also had plenty of zing – the Wendover Wingers and the Red Hot Chilli Quizzers to name but two! The event was won in the end by the Wingrave Washouts (who were anything but), and the monies raised on the evening will be donated towards the refurbishment of the Library, which is planned for the coming summer break. As we shall be finalising our donations to the various departments of the school this term, we have a number of great events lined up,

and more details of these can be found on the Parents Society page on the School web site: Girls’ Night Out: Friday 9th May, in the Performing Arts Studio: – an evening of fun and pampering open to all our female students, their families and friends. Full details will be sent out shortly with ticket application forms on the school’s website. Midsummer Raffle Draw: Friday 20th June: – we have some fantastic prizes lined up for this year’s Raffle, such as a Champagne, Wine and Chocolate hamper, and an iPhone, and if anyone is able to help with donations of prizes for this fundraiser we would be most grateful. Year 7 and 8 Disco Friday 27th June 7–9pm: - our final event of the year and a true sugar rush for all involved, together with an opportunity for some of our Dads to showcase their skills at the BBQ. Full details will follow soon together with ticket application forms. We would love everyone to come to all our events, but realise this is impractical for some people. However, you can still contribute to our fundraising initiatives from home by supporting our raffles, joining The Floyd Flottery and shop via The Giving Machine: The Floyd Flottery: a monthly draw where 50% of the money goes to the school and 50% is paid out in prize money. Last year the

quarterly prize fund hit £300! More details are on the Parents Society website page. The Giving Machine: if you shop on the internet through the Giving Machine, retailers will pay a percentage of money spent to a nominated beneficiary at no additional cost to the buyer. So far we have received commission of over £1080 paid to SHFGS through The Giving Machine. Full details are in the advert in this publication and at Fund Matching Schemes: do you work for an employer who offers to match funds raised by charity? Many employers enable employees who have been involved with charitable fundraising activities to apply for a matching donation of up to £500. You do not need to be a member of the Parents Society Committee, just participating in the event and a contribution in helping out is enough in some cases. Please check with your employer if they offer such a scheme – every donation helps! Everyone is welcome to attend our Parents’ Society Committee Meetings, and our meetings this term are on Mondays 28th April and 16th June. If you can help in any way with our events, or would like to join the Society, please contact us by e-mail: Or contact us via school reception on 01296 424781, and do have a look at our website page!

Students showcased their Rock Challenge entry at the regional competition in Febr uary prior to the Premier Final in June.

. Rock C hallenge Wednesday 12th February saw the arrival of the band ‘The Parades’ at SHFGS to perform, inform, meet and greet our Year 9 and Year 10 students. The purpose was to spread a drug awareness and anti-drugs message to young people as part of a tour of schools in the south east. The band was warmly received and their message was clear: drugs and alcohol pose a threat to the happy and healthy lives of our young people. Both the performance and the message were a hit.

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Band Night.

I was incredibly lucky to be offered a place in this year’s CUSU (Cambridge University Student Union) Shadowing Scheme. I went in the first week, Thursday 23rd – Saturday 25th January. My mentor was a first year undergraduate engineer. I stayed in her room at her college, attended lectures with her and did everything she did, including a Burns Night Superhall which was a (mostly) formal themed three-course meal. There was a lot of Scottish dancing, singing and overly melodramatic Scottish speeches but it was all very good fun! I met all of her friends and had a great time and enjoyed the life of a Cambridge undergraduate for a few days. On the Thursday, we went to a formal event at St. John’s College, which has a hall that looks like it came straight out of Harry Potter, and also met people from the college I stayed at who were very honest about things that they like and dislike about being a Cambridge student. On Friday, I attended two lectures: one on bendy structures and another on linear circuits and transformers. I also had a tour of the Department of Architecture which featured a “completely unnecessary” but very exciting revolving wall-door to the lecture hall. I also went to a lecture by Professor Imre Leader at Trinity College which was most inspiring. I learnt a lot while there and, while half of the lecture contents went straight over my head, I feel I have come away knowing a lot more about the university. For example, there are a lot of common adages said by all students like, “I’d rather go to Oxford than to St. John’s” – St. John’s has a reputation for being very posh and is actually where Prince William is staying. Cambridge is a very traditional place, and

there are many quirky things such as college marriages, college families, “Shoes Off” songs, and many other interesting oddities. Surprisingly, most of the students, with some exceptions of course, are not geniuses. Every day is a tiring struggle with some college libraries open 24 hours every day of the week so that students can work overnight to finish everything. Not only do they have so much work that they don’t find time to have a part time job, but they also have the mandatory social life. My mentor’s friends told me that they, “Have to go out and have a good time to keep themselves sane enough to do the work”. Another asked me if I went to a co-ed school and if there were any boys I liked because, “Talking about boys makes her feel normal”. Also there is no lack of famous faces in Cambridge, with a group of girls waiting by Pierce Brosnan’s car all day to get a picture with him, and the #WheresWilly hashtag to keep tabs on Prince William. I happened to be there the weekend that Jailbreak was on, which meant many students were off in pairs trying to get as far away from Cambridge as possible for thirty-six hours with no money. They were sponsored for the distance that they managed to get away from Cambridge with the money going to ten charities chosen by RAG. Last year, one team got to Australia and another to Singapore! My experience has taught me that Cambridge is a highly academic place where achievement is everything, but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t also fun, different and very exciting too. Micheala Chan 6A3

Elevate Education UK If you have a child in Year 11, 12 or 13 you may have heard them talk about the study skills seminars they have attended this year. The presenters are young, engaging and often Australian! They offer practical advice on everything from note making, revision timetables to memory skills. Their website is a great resource for parents and students so do check it out in the run up to the examination season: Revision tips can be accessed via the Elevate website with the following login information: • username: elevate • password: pacco

Parents are you ever concerned about the distraction of social media when your child assures you they are revising? How about this handy tip from Elevate? “When all else fails: if Facebook and Youtube are winning the battle for attention, here is a handy little trick. In an effort to help the students of the world a number of app makers have developed some handy little programs that temporarily remove distractions from reach of students. For those families using a Microsoft operating system on their computers, download a program called Cold Turkey

and for those using Apple, try a program called Self Control selfcontrolCached These programs allow you to block certain websites (e.g. Facebook) for a specified period of time. In other words, you are not blocking the sites forever, just when you need to.” We wish all our students every success in their examinations (GCSE, A Levels and IB) this summer.

Oxford & Cambridge Student Conference 2014 On 25th March 29 Year 12 students together with Mrs Perrett and Mrs Chapman travelled to Epsom Downs, not for a day at the races but for the annual Oxbridge Conference for Students. This event, which is run by Oxford and Cambridge universities, is designed to give students general information about making a competitive Oxbridge application as well as giving them an opportunity to attend subject-specific talks, many of which include short lecture taster sessions. Current students were also on hand to answer questions. Here are some reflections:

“It made me really excited to go to uni now! The sheer variety of lectures offered was excellent as it allowed me to experience and further my understanding of the courses in which I am interested.” “An inspirational day – very informative.” “Very informative – enjoyed the master class aspect.” “A very interesting and inspiring day. It’s made me even more determined to apply to Oxbridge!” “I feel that the day gave us a realistic insight to what life at Oxford and Cambridge would be like. Personally, I have gained a lot from the information provided today; I have finally decided what I would like to study!”

Congratulations to the following students who are holding conditional offers: Harvey Grant – Music (Organ scholarship), CORPUS CHRISTI COLLEGE, OXFORD Naomi Heffer – Biomedical Sciences, KEBLE COLLEGE, OXFORD Aimee Hills – English, MAGDALENE COLLEGE, CAMBRIDGE Liora Michlin – Biomedical Sciences, NEW COLLEGE, OXFORD

Student Senior Leadership Team Hello! We are Jack Blue and Emmeline Downie, the new Head Boy and Head Girl for 2014/2015. Our team consists of four Deputies:

Kathryn Chapman, Assistant Head of Sixth Form

• Evie Aspinall, Sarah Bull, Ben Churchill and Rishi Shah and four Lead Prefects:

The Floyd Learning Focus Group (FLFG) Update The group were busy working on a number of projects last term. We now have an advice booklet on academic matters including studying in the Sixth Form that is almost ready for distribution to Year 10 students. Students in Year 11 were canvassed for their ideas and the year group below will get the benefit of some received wisdom. Thanks go to Becky Sharp and Xanthe Tunley-Stainton for organising this work. The art group have continued to work with Mr Collins on a project that will be rolled out this term, hopefully with at least one primary school. The group have also worked with Mr Pettifer and myself in considering how we can improve on our methods of planning, setting and assessing homework. The staff on the Inset Day received feedback on our

students’ views: hundreds completed a questionnaire on the school’s VLE giving us a good idea on what is working well and what could be improved. We know that many aspects of our homework are good and very valuable to students’ learning but we are also aware that we need to ensure that homework is interesting, challenging and worthwhile every time it is set. And of course, we are also keen to keep up to date with advances in technology. A trial in using electronic planners plus a pilot in setting homework on line with a designated faculty and year group could well be in the pipeline this term! I would like to thank members of the FLFG for their enthusiasm and professionalism and I look forward to our work this term. Andria Hanham, Deputy Headteacher

• Seb Applewhite, Theo Keeping, Felicity Nicholls and Alice O’Neill. Collectively known as the Student Senior Leadership Team (SSLT), we are anticipating a year of ambitious and rewarding projects. Currently, we are organising the Year 13’s Leavers’ Lunch and have already started to accumulate various ideas which we hope to transform into a memorable farewell. Harvey Grant and Laura Johnson have done an excellent job in their roles of Head Boy and Head Girl and the school is very grateful for their contribution to school life. We look forward to updating you of our progress in the next edition! Jack Blue, 6A2 and Emmeline Downie, 6W2

We are looking to develop our links with all Old Floydians in the year ahead. Apart from providing previous members of the school community with an insight into how their old school has changed and developed in the years since they left, we are also keen to engender closer links with individuals in a number of ways, e.g. • we can provide a venue for reunions, small or large at minimal or no cost; • we would like to invite the sharing of knowledge with our current students so they gain a practical knowledge of particular careers from people who have experienced them; • we would be interested to hear about work experience, attachments or internship opportunities for current students; • we would be delighted to hear of any funding opportunities that the school may apply for in order to develop the school further;

• we would be interested to hear of competitive commercial services that you may think the school may wish to consider; • and of course, if any individual Old Floydians wish to talk to us about personal financial contributions we would be delighted to speak to them. All Old Floydians are emailed the termly Floyd Footnotes and can follow us on the school’s Twitter feed plus we are looking to develop our closer links on LinkedIn in the year ahead. Finally, we are planning to hold an Open Event at the school in the summer term of 2015 to which all Old Floydians will be cordially invited and most welcome. Further details on this will be released in the autumn. However, in outline, we envisage an evening of music, refreshments and conversation with the opportunity to tour the site and refresh fond memories of years spent at Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School.

Old Floydians This is not an article about the elderly, but a reflection on the large number of students who signed up in the autumn to complete a Duke of Edinburgh award, and this term undertook the first of their three expeditions. 56 students are aiming to complete their Bronze Award, and the number represents over a third of the Year 10 cohort. As you may imagine, their first expedition – a training weekend based on the Dunstable

Downs – required both a number of external experts and volunteer staff to be in attendance, including a cold overnight on the first weekend of March. They all completed the weekend and can look forward to warmer weather for their next expeditions in late April and early July. 22 students gathered on the following weekend at Green Park, to get their first Silver Award expedition underway. Those with previous Bronze Award experience

spent much of the first day on navigation skills whilst others learnt camp craft. All spent the second day trekking pre-planned routes in the Wendover Woods area. Our thanks as always go the staff who give up their time (and comforts) to enable the expeditions to take place. Without their selfless approach it would not be possible to offer the opportunity to so many students. Having spent a cold night in my sleeping bag I rose the next morning thinking that perhaps I should be thinking about signing up with the real over seventies! Ian Bryant, Assistant Head

Another photo for you to enjoy! This is the staff photo taken in the Summer of 1991 and it includes the whole staff, both teaching and support! This is less than half the total we have now however, the school was quite a lot smaller in terms of student numbers back then. There was an art technician, some science technicians, a matron and two ladies to do the school administration, including all the typing, all the finances and one even acted as the Head’s PA. Of course in those days the County Council undertook much of the

work that is now delivered on site where we operate independently. Mr May was then the Headmaster and his two deputies were Mr Myers and Mrs Shepherd. There are four members of staff in the photo who still work at the school - can you name and spot them?


Dave Skillington, Alumni Link I now help run a Rhino Conservation volunteer programme in Zimbabwe, based on a game park featured in an Animal Planet documentary “There’s a Rhino in my House”. Having spent 10 years working in marketing in the UK, I decided to take a year off and go travelling through South Africa. Having survived many adventures throughout three countries, I met my now-husband while I was waiting for a new passport in Zimbabwe (penniless with nowhere to go having had everything stolen). Two years as a safari lodge manager followed and I’m still here enjoying the sunshine of Harare working to save the rhino! At the Imire: Rhino & Wildlife Conservation we take volunteers from overseas, many from the UK. Why not look at our website, or the specific information about volunteering at: wildlifeconservation.html

Senior Ski Trip So popular was this year’s Senior Ski Trip during February half term that Snowslippers had to lay on an extra large coach! I don’t know if you recall the weather leading up to half term but our Channel crossing coincided with some of the windiest weather last winter. Our ferry was consequently delayed for hours and we spent a couple of hours marooned in Dover harbour (not a great start). Thankfully there were no further mishaps as we headed to Austria. It has not been the best of snow in the Alps this year, but Alpendorf did not let us down. Snow overnight on at least two occasions resulted in wonderful fresh powder for skiing the next day at altitude. It may have been foggy in the valley but above the cloud we had sparkling sunshine on several days! The great thing about the Red White Red Ski School is they cater for everyone from

absolute beginners to advanced skiers, and also snowboarders. Beginners had so much fun progressing from the nursery slopes to their first chair lift and open pistes. The top group were more inclined to see how far they could travel in one day; they not only explored the local red and black runs but also made it to the nearby resorts of Wagrain and Flachau, skiing the World Cup Flying Mozart downhill course. Apres ski included shopping in Sankt Johann, Austrian bowling, the Thermal Spa or just chilling out with friends or trying to beat Mr Bryant at Chronology! We have launched the 2015 trip (current Years 10-12) and are now taking deposits payable via Parent Mail. Please see the launch letter on the school website or contact myself: Sarah Williams, Assistant Headteacher

You can also follow us on Facebook,

“Putting up a tent blindfolded was a challenge, though with great leadership from Ryan and Anisa - who weren’t blindfolded - we overcame this with great success... eventually.” Raffaela Martuccio, 11M

Teamwork & Leadership Skills in Shropshire On the first weekend in March a group of students were invited to Condover Hall, a former stately home set in acres of parkland near Shrewsbury.They were there to take part in a pilot teamwork and leadership development programme, along with students from Tring School.All the students who attended will be going on a World Challenge expedition either this summer to Ethiopia or in 2015 to India. A 7.00 a.m. start from Aylesbury resulted in a 10.00 a.m. through to 10.00 p.m. day of activities. Each team, including one made up of the staff from the two schools, tackled a range of outdoor challenges and obstacles, including some where participants wore blackout goggles and took on trust direction from their leader. The brief second day was then taken up with high ropes, abseiling and zip-wire activities. Feedback and summary sessions were interspersed with the physical exertions. World Challenge are looking to use this practical skills programme for all

participants in the first year of the expedition programme, and will continue to offer the training weekend in the autumn before departure to their developing world country. The students thoroughly enjoyed the experience as some of their comments below indicate. “It was a challenge making a fire and especially keeping it going. However, with help from my team and the leader, we managed to make a cup of hot chocolate in the Kelly Kettle.” Anish Patel, 11C Amongst the staff who accompanied the students, Jo Whitfield, teacher of art commented: “I finally abseiled down a tower - those that know me are aware that this is a life time fear of heights that I have finally overcome.” We look forward to returning to Condover Hall in future years with further groups of students as part of their World Challenge expedition preparations. Ian Bryant, Assistant Head

“The food was good and we played football with the other school during some ‘down time’.” Will Dobie, 11C

World Challenge On a Friday evening in March the World Challenge Teams that are heading for India South and Rajasthan in July 2015 entertained family and friends to raise group funds for their expedition. The planning had been going on for weeks with students splitting into teams responsible for logistics, entertainment, food, ‘mocktails’ (soft drinks), a quiz, raffle, preparing tickets and advertising. Many hours of after school and lunchtime meetings finally bore fruit and soon after 7.00 p.m. over 180 guests were seated in the hall! The Asian food prepared by students and parents was delicious (try out the recipe below with nan bread, steamed rice, cucumber raita and mango chutney) and the entertainment was enjoyed by all. The guests amazed us with their generosity and the grand total raised was ÂŁ1,798. 00. This will pay for the transport to the training weekend Snowdonia in the autumn when the teams will be honing their camping and trekking skills, and learning how to stay safe on expedition. Sarah Williams, Assistant Headteacher


Chicken Jalfrezi

4 chicken breasts, 1 large chopped onion, 1 garlic clove crushed, 1 tsp ginger puree, 1 tsp ground cumin, 2 tsp ground coriander, 1/2 tsp hot chilli powder,1 tsp turmeric, juice of 1 small lemon, 400g chopped tinned tomatoes, 1 garlic clove chopped, 2 red chopped peppers, 1 red chopped chilli, 1 tsp garam masala, 3 tbsp oil, salt and pepper, 1/2 cup of water. Cut the chicken into little chunks and mix in the lemon juice with a little salt and pepper. Marinade in the fridge for 20 minutes. Preheat 2 tbsp of oil in a large pan. Soften the onion for 5 minutes, add the garlic and ginger puree and fry for another couple of minutes. Add the chilli powder, ground cumin, ground coriander and turmeric and fry for another couple of minutes. Add the tomatoes, water and the chicken and stir well. Bring up to a simmer and cook covered on a medium heat for 25 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Meanwhile get another pan, heat the remaining tbsp of oil and gently fry the chopped garlic for a minute or two. Add the peppers, chilli and garam masala and fry for another 5 minutes or until the peppers have softened slightly. Mix this with the rest of the curry, stir well and take off the heat. Enjoy!

Fundraise While You Shop!

If you are shopping on the internet for wine, furniture, iTunes, gifts or even flights, please take a moment to log onto The Giving Machine at Register yourself and select Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School as your nominated beneficiary. There are hundreds of shopping sites accessible through The Giving Machine including Amazon, M&S, Tesco, Asda, BA, Boden, Next, E-Bay, Argos, John Lewis and many more. The school will earn a percentage of the value of items bought, which varies by retailer at no additional cost to the purchaser. Think how much we could fundraise without any effort at all if everyone at school logged onto The Giving Machine when shopping on the internet! Please support your school and log onto

Dates for your Diary Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School |

April 2014 Tuesday 22nd

Inset – School closed to students

Saturday 21st

Rock Challenge Premier Final in Portsmouth

Wednesday 23rd – Tuesday 29th

Year 13 Trial A Level Examinations

Tuesday 24th

Sports Day

Thursday 24th

Year 9 GCSE Standards Evening at 7.00 p.m.

Thursday 26th

Sixth Form Induction Day

Saturday 26th – Sunday 27th

DofE Bronze Practice Expedition

Friday 27th

Parents Society Years 7 & 8 Disco at 6.30 p.m.

Monday 28th

Year 13 IB Students Study Leave starts

Wednesday 30th – Friday 2nd May

Year 9 Examinations

Saturday 28th – Monday 30th

DofE Silver Qualifying Expedition in the Peak District

Monday 28th

Parents Society meeting at 7.30 p.m.

Monday 30th

New Year 7 & 8 Parents Evening

May 2014

Y12 Birmingham University Visit

Year 12 Next Steps Day

July 2014

Thursday 1st

Junior Maths Challenge (Year 8)

Tuesday 1st

New Year 7 & 8 Students Induction Day

Friday 2nd

Year 10 Business Studies trip to Thorpe Park

Wednesday 2nd

Open Evening from 6.30-8.30 p.m.

Saturday 3rd – Monday 5th

DofE Silver Practice Expedition in the Cotswolds

Friday 4th

Open Morning at 9.45 a.m.

Monday 6th

Bank Holiday – School Closed

Saturday 5th – Sunday 6th

DofE Bronze Qualifying Expedition

Monday 6th – Friday 16th May

International Baccalaureate examinations

Thursday 10th

Celebration of Achievement at 1.30 p.m.

Wednesday 7th

Open Morning at 9.45 a.m.

Friday 9th

Parents Society Girls Night Out from 6.30 p.m.

Friday 11th – Thursday 17th

Activities Week

Monday 12th – Friday 27th June

GCSE & A Level Examinations

Saturday 11th – Monday 11th Aug

World Challenge Ethiopia

Monday 12th

Year 11 Study Leave starts

Friday 18th

Mufti Day

Monday 12th – Tuesday 3rd June

Year 12 AS Students Study Leave

Monday 21st – Friday 29th Aug


Friday 16th

Charity Bake Sale

Monday 26th – Friday 30th


June 2014

Summer Concert at 7.00 p.m.

September 2014

Monday 2nd

Inset – School closed to students

Monday 1st – Tuesday 2nd

Inset – School closed to students

Tuesday 3rd

Year 11 Study Leave starts

Wednesday 3rd

Years 7 & 8 (+ Year 10 Buddies) + Year 13 only in school

Tuesday 3rd – Friday 13th

Year 7 and Year 8 Examinations

Thursday 4th

All Year Groups in school

Wednesday 4th

Y12 return from Study Leave

Thursday 5th

Open Morning at 9.45 a.m.

Wednesday 11th – Sunday 15th

IB Biology Field Trip to Flatford Mill

Monday 16th

Parents Society meeting at 7.30 p.m.

Monday 16th – Friday 20th

Year 10 Examinations

Friday 20th

Parents Society Midsummer Raffle Draw

Year 12 Induction Day, including Wet ‘n Wild

Dates are liable to change. Please see the school website for up to date information

Clark Howes Group More than your ‘typical’ accountants

At Clark Howes Accountants we do much more than just your books +44 (0) 1296 769818

Business Structuring Bookkeeping Tax Payroll VAT Year-end Accounts Business Planning

Please see the school website for a complete set of dates and events

Support the Parents Society fundraising from home! An application form is available on the Parents Society page of the school website.

Quarterly prize fund of around £300!

Designed & Produced by FSE Design Tel: 01933 303520

Floyd Footnotes - Issue 17  
Floyd Footnotes - Issue 17