16th Jan 2014
A very warm welcome back to all of our students. May I remind parents of our uniform rules: we expect students to wear dark coloured (plain without large logos) outdoor coats. Black shoes should be worn and not boots. If the weather does become inclement, we will inform students if alternative footwear can be worn. Leggings are not acceptable. Please also ensure that all nail varnish is removed. STAFF TRAINING DAY - A JOINT VENTURE! On Monday 6th January, teachers from Abel Smith, Millmead, Morgons and Wheatcroft joined with Simon Balle staff for joint training. The morning was led by Brigid De Rivaz and teachers discussed effective teaching and learning strategies across the entire sector. We are now planning more sessions including the launch of our second inter-school research project, this time looking at effective strategies for enabling the most able students to achieve the highest grades. Welcome to several new members of staff; Mrs Frederiksen and Mrs Paddick In the Modern Foreign Languages department and Mrs Creasey in the front office. VACANCIES We are currently advertising for a Finance Premises Manager and a Science technician. Please see the website for details. PASTORAL NEWS Mr Pooley will be overseeing Y10, with Miss Ahmet helping him. Once the Y11 take their exams, Mr Pooley will remain the groups Head of Year.
POLITE NOTICE: We would like to remind parents not to park outside the entrance to Balls Park development. Residents are unable to enter and exit the estate safely.
DATES FOR YOUR DIARY: 16th Jan
Y11 Parents Evening
AS/A2 Mock Exams
Y9 Holocaust Memorial Day
Year 13 Parents Evening
Big Band Evening
Y7 Parents Evening
Y10 Parents Evening
End of term
CHINESE NEW YEAR - Year of the Horse Please join us in celebrating the Chinese New Year on Friday 31st Our canteen will be serving traditional Chinese food which is always popular with students and staff alike. The cost of the meal of the day is £2.15. A full menu will be published nearer the event.
HCC - AMENDMENT TO ADMISSIONS ARRANGEMENTS Hertfordshire County Council is running a consultation on the proposed admission arrangements for the school year 2015/16 and is seeking responses from parent/carers, schools and community groups. The main change is an amendment to the admissions arrangements for coeducational community secondary schools. It is proposed to remove the existing rule 6: “Children living outside the priority area for whom it is the nearest school or academy that is coeducational, non-faith and non-partially selective” Children living outside the named priority area for a school would be prioritised purely on the basis of distance. The consultation period runs until 28 February 2014. Please visit www.hertsdirect.org/admissions2015 for more information and to respond online or call 01992 555840 for a copy of the consultation document. Many other own admission authority schools and academies in Hertfordshire are also consulting on their admission arrangements for 2015/16. The arrangements for all schools proposing changes can be found at www.hertsdirect.org/ ownadmissions2015 and on individual school websites.
KIMBILI JSS A brilliant group of sixth formers, Paige O'Hara, Sophie Hind, Ollie Fyfe and Ben Gould, with the help of Sophie Milne, organised the efforts of many more Key Stage 3 students to put together a giant Christmas card to send to our linked school in South Africa, Kimbili JSS. This card signifies the ties we continue to build with the school and the communication we hope to carry on building in the future. These four students have worked incredibly hard in leading students in link activities this term, and the Ubuntu group that meets once a week will be compiling an information video about the Eastern Cape, where Kimbili is based, in the new year. Watch this space! Katie Hill Head of RE
PSA Have you had a New Year clear out? If you have any clean 'outgrown' items of uniform that you would like to donate to the PSA please bring it to the school office - we are especially short of green jumpers but all donations will be welcome. If any families have an excess of the 'trouser' hangers (ie those with pinch grips) we'd also be happy to take those! We are in the process of arranging the next PSA quiz night - date still to be confirmed but likely to be mid-March. Watch this space for more information. Finally, if you shop in the Hertford Branch of Waitrose, the PSA are this month one of the Charities in the Waitrose Community Matters Scheme - please remember to pop a disc in for us :-) For anyone who doesn't know, each month Waitrose splits £1,000 between 3 local charities based on the number of green discs collected by each charity. Hopefully we'll collect a few during January. The funding generated will go towards the PSA paying for a new school minibus.
LIBRARY AND ENGLISH DEPARTMENT NEWS FICTION BOOKS JUST ARRIVED New titles just delivered to our Library include copies of Defy the Stars by Sophie McKenzie. This is the final instalment of the romantic Falling Fast series and was just published on 2nd January. Multiple copies of Anne Cassidy’s very popular, haunting story Looking for JJ have arrived and are suitable for Y9 students upwards. We await the sequel to this famous book which is due out shortly. As well as more copies of the popular HIVE series, by Mark Walden we are trying Sienna Mercer’s My Sister the Vampire books 1-3 requested by some of our students. All the above titles are on the display shelves in our Library. If any students or staff have suggestions for purchasing new books please speak to the Library Team. Thank you for your support.
BOOK REVIEW (Nicky Singer spoke to our Y7 students in Book Week) Feather Boy by Nicky Singer is a heart-warming book about a boy who is effectively seen as the class geek and has more tormentors than friends. Robert Noble is a very imaginative boy who does not know that tomorrow would change his life forever. Catherine, the head of the class project in the local old people’s home, tells a story and won’t reveal the ending until the project is completed. Robert is to care for Edith Sorrel while at the home, and while talking to Edith many unknown and forgotten secrets are revealed. Edith sets Robert a mammoth task and as Robert finishes the task, he hears news that Edith has just turned deathly ill. Her life is hanging in the balance, but Robert believes the task may save her life. But is it too late? Feather Boy is suitable for Y7 upwards. Shanna Hayes Y7
A GALLANT DISPLAY BY U15 GIRLS IN NATIONAL CUP Yesterday the u-15 squad travelled to Gorleston, near Great Yarmouth, for their last-16 match against Lynn Grove High School in the National Cup. The two evenly-matched teams fought out an exciting game with Simon Balle twice coming back from being a goal down in the first half. The second half started well, with us taking the lead before Lynn Grove equalised near the end of normal time. There was no breakthrough from the 3-3 score line during extra time so the tie went to a penalty shootout. Unfortunately Simon Balle lost this 4-3. Mr Carter was very proud of the game the team played and the spirit they showed despite losing in such unfortunate circumstances. We wish Lynn Grove the best of luck in their quarter final game against Queens’ School, Bushey and thank them for their hospitality.
HOCKEY NEWS Well done to both the Y7 girls’ hockey teams who won and drew with their respective teams against Presdales this evening. The A team had a convincing 5-1 victory, Lucy Heald scoring 4 of the 5 goals and getting player of the match. The B team (who played with 1 less player) drew 2-2 and Amy Chen was awarded player of the match for them. An excellent result in horrible, rainy conditions. Well done girls! Also a big thank you to the parents who endured the rain too to support the girls, it is always appreciated. Last night the Year 7 girls beat Broxbourne in both A (6-0) and B (2-0) games, well done to all involved. Miss Traynor
FLORENCE FYFE & KALLUM TITCHMARSH Congratulations to Florence and Kallum on their fantastic achievements in football over the past few weeks. Florence was recently selected to train at the famous St. Georges Park with the England U17’s this week. Florence has been an international for the past few years and her consistency and hard work has resulted in this call up. Well done Florence. Kallum has recently been selected to play and train with Southend United. Kallum has shown lots of promise over the past few years and this is a reward of all his hard work. Kallum recently played in a tournament with his new club where they were victorious with Kallum scoring 2 goals and 3 assists. Kallum’s next tournament with Southend United takes place at the O2 Arena in February.
EXTRA-CURRICULAR CLUBS Tuesday – Archery & Girls Cricket (Y8 & 9) There are more spaces available for Archery, if you are interested please see Mr. Brennan especially if you are a Year 10 or Year 11 student. Friday – Gymnastics club will now take place on a Friday at lunch-time in the Gymnasium instead of Sportshall Athletics until February half term. Athletics – The next Athletics competition takes place on the 15th March which is the District Cross Country Championships.
PE POLICY CLARIFICATION Trainers – It is important that all students have adequate footwear for PE to prevent against any injury occurring. Plimsoles are not appropriate for most forms of PE as they do not provide sufficient grip and therefore there is a risk of injury. If there are any issues regarding this please contact Mr. Brennan. Injury/ illness – If a student attends PE with an injury or illness they are still expected to wear PE kit where possible.