Richard Gilpin - Acting Headteachers Blog

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Early entry results

Once again we are really delighted with our students’ results.  They show the continued improvement that we are making here at Pittville and more evidence that Pittville is a good school.

The number of students who have achieved their target grades is tremendous.  77% of those students who took their maths early achieved a grade C or above, with a significant number achieving the highest grades.  85% of our top set in maths achieved their target grades.

In English, many students take 2 separate GCSE’s in Language and Literature.  They too achieved tremendous results with 55% of early entry students gaining grade C or above after only a few months of following the language course.

Our continued success is because we place emphasis on excellent teaching and high expectations for every student.

This success would not be possible without the dedication of our hard-working staff.  I would like to congratulate the students who have worked exceptionally hard and I am grateful for the support our parents and carers continue to provide.

This makes me very proud to be the Headteacher at Pittville School.

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Recent Posts

Sports Relief 2014 Wednesday, April 02, 2014
Please see below photos from Sports Relief 2014.
Science STEM Fair at All Saints Academy Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Over the past 7 weeks a group of students working on an after school project based around the title 'A mission to Mars'.

The idea of the project was aimed at how we could provide an environment in which man could inhabit Mars in the future. The students have been investigating the effectiveness of different sun creams for protection against the Sun's harmful UV rays, and which sun cream would offer the best protection once on Mars.

The project has involved them carrying out extensive research into what Mars is like as a planet, what UV radiation is and the dangers associated with it as well as how sun creams work and what 'SPF' actually means. They have also used various practical studies to test the protection different sun creams offer.

At the end of this 7 weeks the students were invited to come and present their work at the Triple Science STEM Fair hosted by All Saints Academy. They presented their research and practical findings along with other local schools, including Pates, All Saints Academy, Ninth, Lakers, Gloucester Academy and Barnwood Park. They also got the chance to take part in a Science quiz and work with the Bloodhound SSC team to find out more about the car that will attempt the next land speed record.

Our students, as always were a credit to us, and many people commented on how polite, smart and sociable they were. The highlight of the day was the fact that Pittville School won! The students were given first place for their presentation of their work and they won the Science quiz with a fantastic 35/37. To then top this all off the one group from our school made up of Krishan Diyar, Molly Johnstone, Pearse McGuigan, Xiao Pan, Josie Robinson and Ellie Carruthers, managed to win the award for 'Overall winners of the Science Fair'.

A brilliant day topped off with a fantastic for a lot of hard work and effort.

Year 11 Examination Calendar Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Please follow the link below.  Students have been given their individual examination timetables.

Y11 Examination Calendar 

Tomorrow's Engineers Friday, March 28, 2014

On Friday 21st March Pittville School played host to By Design.  Please see the report below.

Tomorrow's Engineers

'Young Writers' The Poetry Games 2014 Thursday, March 27, 2014

Recently, Pittville School entered Young Writers' The Poetry Games 2014 competition.  We are delighted that 18 of our students have been successful and now have the opportunity to be published within a special anthology.

The Poetry Games 2014 has been a great success and thousands of entries from all over the UK have been received.  Work was selected for publication based on perception, imagination, expression and creative use of language.  This is a great achievement for our students and we are very proud of them.

A copy of the book our students work appears in 'The Poetry Games - Southern Voices' will be sent to the British Library and further libraries across the UK providing a lasting record of their achievement.  We will receive a complimentary copy of the book which is scheduled to be published on 30th June 2014.    

Y11 Easter Revision Timetable Thursday, March 20, 2014

Please see attached.

Easter Revision Timetable

Livingstone Cake Sale Thursday, March 20, 2014
Thanks to everyone who helped make the Livingstone Cake sale a huge success.  Approximately £55 raised so far.  Gloucestershire Air Ambulance will be presented with a cheque in an assembly. 
Poetry Live - March 2014 Thursday, March 20, 2014

On 7th March, the English department took 36 year 10 and 11 students to Westminster Central Hall for the National Poetry Live event. Students had a fantastic day watching their favourite poets perform and recite their work. Some world famous poets, such as Simon Armitage, John Agard and Carol Ann Duffy, really got the students engaged and gave them some valuable advice regarding the poetry exam that year 11 will be sitting in May. They had the opportunity to ask questions and listen to the poets’ own take on their poems as well. Students also got to hear the chief examiner for English Literature give some guidance regarding the exam. This was a wonderful and inspirational day, which all students thoroughly enjoyed and found useful heading towards their exams.

 

 

Girls' PE Report - 11th March 2014 Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Year 7 girls beat All Saints Academy at netball 7-5.  The player of the match was Annabel Moulder.

Year 9 girls also played basketball against All Saints Academy and lost 32 - 16.  Their player of the match was Courtney Burrows. 

Glenfall Primary School Art Project Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Miss Addison was delighted to visit Year 5 students at Glenfall Primary School before half term. The students at Glenfall had been working on a project based around Cheltenham and their local area. Miss Addison and the students worked on creating mixed media collages, using maps, text and creating drawings based on local landmarks. The work produced by the Year 5 students was of a fantastic quality and the Pittville art department look forward to working with Glenfall students again very soon.
April 2014 Newsletter Thursday, April 03, 2014

NEWSLETTER
EASTER 2014

Dear Parents/Carers
It has been a very busy term. I would like to update you on the many events that have taken place. The new term begins on Tuesday 22nd April 2014.

Year 11 Easter Revision
There are a number of revision sessions taking place for Year 11 students during the school holidays. I know that these will be well attended by students. Year 11 students need to keep up the hard work as we move closer to their final examinations this summer.

Attendance
We continue to work hard as a school to raise the profile of attendance and the link between good attendance and excellent performance at GCSE. It is vitally important that we work in partnership with parents to ensure that our students’ attendance remains high so that they continue to make excellent progress at Pittville.

Japanese Students
On Thursday 6th March 2014 we played host to 36 Japanese students from the Reitaku High School in Tokyo. They were part of a 60 strong party on a visit to England organised by Inlingua of Cheltenham. The Japanese students met their Year 8 and 9 student 'hosts' and were given a tour of the school. They then took part in a question and answer session where both sets of students found out about each other's school and culture. The visiting students then spent two lessons in various faculties to get a taste of what an English school is like. At the end of the day the visitors performed to Year 7 students and their hosts. They did a presentation and sang songs. Students were then able to try various cultural games such as Shuji (Japanese Calligraphy), Origami (paper craft) and Hanetsuki (badminton with wooden paddles and a shuttlecock).

Photography Trip to Bristol
On Tuesday 25th February 2014 our Year 10 photography students went to photograph architecture in Bristol. The trip forms part of their GCSE and allows images to be taken of gritty urban landscapes. The students were given a tour of the waterfront areas, museums and shipping architecture and then were left to their own creative devices. This ‘landscape’ aspect of their coursework forms a part of a range of different skills and genres they will cover over their two year course.

Maths Challenge
Students from Years 9-11 took part in the intermediate maths challenge which is run by the UK Mathematics Trust. The challenge involved answering 25 multiple choice questions in one hour under exam conditions. No calculators are allowed! The top 40% of students nationally receive a gold, silver or bronze certificate. 16 of our students received these awards. Josh Daniel did particularly well (especially as he is still in Year 9) and will be invited to sit the European Kangaroo paper. This is sat by students from 30 countries worldwide. Years 7 and 8 maths set 1 will be able to try the junior challenge in May.

PE Leadership Academy
A number of students attend Leadership Academy Training at Pates Grammar School. The leaders, including our two young ambassadors Abir Ahmed and Brittany Sutton-Page, had a glowing report back after the primary schools badminton coaching. A credit to the school!

Iris Long Talk at Dean Close
Year 11 students recently attended the ‘Iris Long’ talk at Dean Close School by Katie Piper. The ‘Iris Long’ talks are specifically targeted at young people and aim to inspire a new generation to challenge themselves beyond their own expectations. Katie Piper is a television presenter and former model. She had hoped to have a full-time career in the media, but in March 2008 sulphuric acid was thrown in her face. The attack left Katie blinded in one eye. The students found her talk truly inspirational and left many of them in tears. We hope to attend further talks at Dean Close School in the future.

PE Update
The PE department’s ‘Get set to make a Change' group are planning their next inspiring session. They are in the process of planning an event at a local nursery school and will be sending the message to 3-5 year olds about what is healthy and what is not. The session will involve an interactive presentation and healthy sandwich making with the children. The Btec Sports students have been busy this term planning and leading their activities too. These events are part of their coursework and they have been extremely successful. Some of the events that they have undertaken are a two week table tennis club for Years 7 and 8, a primary school training session and games, a house tag-rugby competition for Years 9 and 10 and a staff house netball match.

Summer Uniform
The summer polo shirts are now available to purchase from ‘Schooltogs’. They cost £7.50 for ages 11-15 and £9.95 for small, medium and large. They can be worn after the Easter holidays.

Schools’ Drama Festival
On Wednesday 26th February 2014, 10 Year 7 students took part in the Schools’ Drama Festival held at The Bacon Theatre. Students performed Alice in Wonderland alongside 5 local schools. Each school performed a 15 minute extract which when joined together told the whole story. The students had been rehearsing in a 20 minute slot during their lunchtimes and worked really hard to learn their lines and create their scene. Our scene was the final one, there was a lot of pressure to live up to. Pittville students didn’t disappoint. The organiser commented on how high the standard was and that she was surprised that our students were only Year 7. We are looking forward to taking part again next year when a Key Stage 3 Festival is planned.

Poetry Live
On 7th March 2014, the English department took 36 Year 10 and 11 students to Westminster Central Hall for the National Poetry Live event. Students had a fantastic day watching their favourite poets perform and recite their work. Some world famous poets, such as Simon Armitage, John Agard and Carol Ann Duffy, really got the students engaged and gave them some valuable advice regarding the English exam that Year 11 will be sitting in May. They had the opportunity to ask questions and listen to the poets’ own take on their poems as well. Students also got to hear the chief examiner for English Literature give some guidance regarding the exam. This was a wonderful and inspirational day, which all students thoroughly enjoyed and found useful heading towards their exams.

Geography Fieldtrip
On 11th March 2014 the geography department took a group of Year 7 students to the Playhouse Theatre. They participated in several river based workshops based on a ‘Love Your River Chelt’ project with the Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust. These interactive workshops culminated in the students staging a presentation of their ideas to the remainder of Year 7.

Art Department Visit to Glenfall Primary School
Miss Addison was delighted to visit Year 5 students at Glenfall Primary School. The students at Glenfall had been working on a project based around Cheltenham and their local area. Miss Addison and the students worked on creating mixed media collages using maps, text and creating drawing based on local landmarks. The work produced by the Year 5 students was of a fantastic quality and we look forward to working with them again.

Young Writers ‘Poetry Games 2014’ Competition
Pittville School recently entered the Poetry Games 2014 competition. 18 students have been successful and now have the opportunity of having their poems published within a special anthology. A copy of the book “The Poetry Games” will be sent to the British Library and further libraries across the UK providing a lasting record of their achievement. Pittville School will receive a copy of the book which is scheduled for publication on 30th June 2014. This is a great achievement and something that we and the students are very proud of.

By Design
On Friday 21st March 2014, a company called ‘By Design’ came into school to work with the whole of Year 9 on a series of workshops entitled ‘Tomorrow’s Engineers’. The aim of the day was to raise awareness about the wide range of careers in engineering enabling students to make informed choices about their future. The day ran very smoothly and students and staff thoroughly enjoyed taking part in the activities and learned a lot about engineers and careers in engineering. The presenters commented on the good behaviour and enthusiasm of the students.

Go Karting
Pittville recently finished a series of 6 timed races with a crew of three in a gallant 4th place. An amazing achievement as the other three teams were all sixth formers with karting experience. A great win for Robbie Ede who won the fifth race in style – flag to flag! Shaq Marks worked his magic and zoomed from 4th to 2nd in the third race! A great display by Pittville; wonderful behaviour, competitive spirit and team work! Well done Robbie Ede, Shaq Marks and Jason Welby!

Science Fair
Over the past 7 weeks a group of students have been working on an after school project based around the title 'A mission to Mars'. The idea of the project was aimed at how we could provide an environment in which man could inhabit Mars in the future. The students have been investigating the effectiveness of different sun creams for protection against the Sun's harmful UV rays, and which sun cream would offer the best protection once on Mars. The students were invited to present their work at the Triple Science STEM Fair hosted by All Saints Academy. The highlight of the day was the fact that Pittville School won! The students were given first place for their presentation of their work and they won the Science quiz with a fantastic 35/37. To then top this all off the one group from our school made up of Krishan Diyar, Molly Johnstone, Pearse McGuigan, Xiao Pan, Josie Robinson and Ellie Carruthers, managed to win the award for 'Overall winners of the Science Fair'. A brilliant day topped off with a fantastic result for a lot of hard work and effort.

Dance Gala - ‘Dance through the ages’
This year’s dance gala was a huge success with over 90 students from Years 7 – 11 taking part. The dancers put on a fabulous show full of energy and entertainment. We saw many dance styles from Shaq Marks and George Mubayiwa’s street routine to a beautiful ballet performance by Lauren-Summer Cresswell. Thank you to all the staff, students, the PTFA and parents for their support with the night. We are already looking forward to next year’s show!

Abbott House
It has been another busy term for Abbott House. Abbott House was well represented at the PTFA annual quiz by a large team of students and staff. Miss Underhill, Miss Guinan and Miss Addison represented the staff. A really enjoyable evening was had by all, and although Abbott did not win, we were happy with our position and pleased to be able to support the PTFA. Abbott House also held their own fantastic fundraising event. Miss Guinan organised a ‘zumbathon’ in the hall. Students from every year group attended as well as some staff, all of whom paid £1 to enter which will be donated to ‘Sugarloaf’, Abbott's chosen charity. The event was a fantastic success.

Aston House
Since the Christmas break lots of things have taken place in Aston House. The highlight was the Valentine’s Day “Last Rolo” event being organised by 9as1 and 9as2, which caused much amusement and laughter and managed to raise over £50 for our house charity, The Aston Project. Following on from this event, two local police officers came into a house assembly to collect the cheque and speak about where the monies will go and the great work the Aston Project does. The next main highlight of the term was the PTFA quiz, where Aston fielded a house team of staff and students. Although we did not win, it was a very enjoyable evening and I must say thank you to all the Aston students who attended and rescued Miss Davis and Mr Watkins from embarrassment in many of the rounds! We hope you all have a lovely relaxing Easter holidays.

Livingstone House
The PTFA quiz evening on 7th February 2014 proved to be a fun and very competitive time for all houses. From ‘picture rounds’ and ‘guess the objects’ to ‘music from days gone by’. The evening built up into a tightly fought contest. Aston and Abbott Houses began to feel the pressure as the evening progressed (the youth in their teams proving a disadvantage in some rounds!!). I am proud to report that the Livingstone quiz team came out on top in our mini-house competition, finishing 4th overall. On behalf of Livingstone house I would like to thank all the children who got involved, Mr Poole for his contribution to our house answers (some were wrong!!) and of course Mr Edwards and Mrs Hawling for organising the event. On Thursday 13th March 2014, students from Livingstone and Abbott joined together to make cakes for Livingstone’s cake sale on Friday. Mrs Brookes helped us to create over 60 cakes to sell and she personally decorated the cakes to provide a homemade feel. On Friday, Livingstone students from Years 11 and 8 ran the cake stand in the school canteen and managed to make a whopping £52 for the Gloucestershire Air Ambulance - a very worthwhile charity. It was an enjoyable 2 days for everyone.

Dunalley University
At the beginning of the academic year Dunalley Primary School launched ‘Dunalley University’. On Friday 21st March 2014 we were very pleased to play host to their graduation ceremony. The initiative aims to extend the experience of their children and open up a wider range of opportunities where children can succeed. 180 children from Dunalley visited Pittville School and celebrated their achievements. We were delighted that over 100 Dunalley parents were also able to attend. We hope that this will become a regular event.

French Trip to Annecy
16 of our students are currently in Annecy, France. They are spending time in a French school and taking part in many other cultural activities. A full report will be in the next newsletter.

Staff Goodbyes
We say goodbye to Miss Purnell from the Performing Arts Department. We would like to thank her for all her hard work and wish her all the best for the future.

May I take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support and would like to wish everyone a happy Easter break. See you next term.


Mr Gilpin
Headteacher

February 2014 Newsletter Wednesday, February 19, 2014

PITTVILLE SCHOOL NEWSLETTER
FEBRUARY 2014

Dear Parents/Carers

As we approach February half term I would like to update you on what has been happening and to inform you of some future events.

Twitter
Please follow us on ‘Twitter’ @PittvilleSchool. We are using this method of communication more and more to get important messages out to the community.

Year 11 Attendance
For the attention of all year 11 parents/carers
When we return after half term, year 11 students have less than 50 teaching days before their summer exams begin. Excellent attendance is vital if they are to succeed in these exams. Please support us to support the students.

Year 11 Study Support
A revision timetable for Year 11 has been sent home. A copy is available on the website. Please can this be checked carefully as it is essential that students attend the revision sessions set for the February holidays.

Year 11 interviews
Year 11 students are in the middle of their interviews for 6th form places. We wish them the best of luck for their interviews.

Early Entry Maths Results
Pittville students enjoyed some early GCSE success. 80 students in year 11 have already achieved an A*-C in their GCSE maths. Well done to those students on achieving this before the summer.

Year 7 Literacy Week
Year 7 Literacy Week involved students completing a 10-15 minute literacy based starter activity at the beginning of every lesson. Students raced against the clock in maths where they had 'dictionary races’. They revised the use of the apostrophe in French and wrote detailed paragraphs about their Science equipment! Students were engaged and interested and were able to see how literacy is relevant in all subjects. A success!

Infobuzz
InfoBuzz aims to promote positive change in the lives of young people through providing individual support around drugs & emotional health issues, learning opportunities for groups focusing on the development of personal & social skills, and information & support around substance misuse. They are an educational charity that work with young people and liaise with schools by offering workshops for PSHE based themes. This year, we were lucky enough to be one of several schools in the county to take part in a workshop called "Is there anybody out there?" which involved a performance from 6th Form Theatre Studies students from Farmor’s School and a feedback and discussion session. Students found this an informative and engaging way to explore a subject that is often left un-addressed.

Martin Horwood MP
On Friday 17th January 2014 all the MP's in Pittville Parliament were lucky enough to meet MP Martin Horwood. Mr Horwood came in to tell the Pittville MP's all about his role as an MP and what it entails. He then offered to answer questions from the students. Mr Horwood commented on how impressed he was with the students he met. Pittville Parliament would like to thank Mr Horwood for coming in to visit them!

Poetry Slam
On 5th February 2014, year 8 spent a whole poetry-packed day with Birmingham’s Poet Laureate, Giovanni ‘Spoz’ Esposito. In the morning the students created their own poems about chocolate and competed in a group Poetry Slam against each other in the afternoon. The atmosphere was electric as the winning group was announced and this group will now compete against other schools at the Cheltenham Poetry Festival on the 25th March 2014. The students had an exciting day. Tickets can be purchased from the Town Hall box office on 0844 576 2210 or via the festival website at www.cheltenhampoetryfest.co.uk priced at £5.00 adults and £3.00 concessions.

Year 10 Trip to University of Gloucestershire
A group of Year 10 students attended the University of Gloucestershire Higher Education Aspiration Road Show at Francis Close Hall. They took part in three workshops with the aim to inspire and raise aspirations.

PTFA Quiz Night – 7th February 2014
Our Parent, Teacher and Friends Association ran a very successful quiz night recently, at which about 100 adults and students enjoyed themselves. Some teams were representing their school houses to gain points, and some were just there to have fun. The P.T.F.A. served home-made soup with crusty bread, and there was a tuck shop, bar and raffle. The scoring was very close all the way through, but the eventual winners were a team compiled of both parents and students. There was a lot of positive feed-back from the competitors, and the evening raised between £400 and £500 for the school. Pittville School P.T.F.A. run regular fund-raising events to help the school, and have a lot of fun in the process. If you would like to know more about our P.T.F.A., please contact us at ptfa@pittville.gloucs.sch.uk , or come to our next meeting on Tuesday 4th March 2014 7.00pm at The Strand pub.

Summer Uniform
Students are able to wear their Pittville polo shirt from Easter 2014. Only polo shirts with the Pittville School logo are allowed, not plain white polo shirts. Students are still expected to wear their blazer with the polo shirt. Polo shirts are available from ‘School Togs’.

Flying Start Project
A group of year 7 students have taken part in a STEM activity at Dowty Aerospace on 12th February 2014. The activity required the students to design and build a self-propelled glider. Participants were then invited to take part in a ‘Fly Off’ competition.

PE report
Girls
Years 7, 8, 9 and 11 girls have played 50 netball, hockey and football fixtures since September. The girls have done fantastically well winning 28 out of 50, giving us a 56% win rate. Notable wins have come from the year 7 netball team who have beaten Winchcombe, Cleeve, All Saints Academy and St Edwards and from the year 9 girls’ football team who are undefeated for the third year in a row in the Cheltenham League! Our years 7, 8 and 9 netball teams have beaten Bournside and the year 9 netball team also had a great 18-2 victory over St Edwards. Outstanding results! Well done girls!

Boys
Unfortunately, most of the boys’ fixtures have been postponed due to the bad weather. These fixtures will be rearranged as soon as we are able! On a positive note, 45 boys from years 7, 8 and 9 have been regularly turning up on Monday nights for football training.

Next Term

27th February 2014 Iris Long talks at Dean Close for Year 11
3rd March 2014 Bournside 6th Form interviews
4th March 2014 GlosCol interviews
6th March 2014 Japanese students visiting
11th – 13th March 2014 Y11 mock exams
19th March 2014 Year 11 C/D Borderline Evening
20th March 2014 Pittville’s Got Talent
4th April 2014 Inservice Day – school closed to students


December 2013 Tuesday, January 07, 2014

 

               PITTVILLE SCHOOL NEWSLETTER

December 2013

Dear Parents/Carers

Year 7

Our Year 7 students have settled into school life. They are integrating well into the school and the Year 7 Tutor Evening was a huge success.

Open Evening

Thank you to everyone who helped to make Open Evening such a good showcase for the school. This includes our teachers, support staff and all the students who came in to work in departments, act as guides or help in other ways, and you as parents for giving them lifts to and from school.

School Calendar

The school calendar is now available to be viewed on the school website. This is a live calendar and will keep parents up to date with all the events that take place at Pittville. It also has important term dates such as the end of term and INSET days, as well as trip dates and exam dates.

Twitter

Follow the school on Twitter and receive regular updates on what is happening in and around school.  @PittvilleSchool.

Reporting Absence

Parents of students in all year groups should report an absence by leaving a message on the Attendance Office phone, 01242 548717. Parents should contact the attendance office on the first day of absence.  Any students arriving at school after registration must sign in with reception indicating the reason why they are signing in late. Thank you.

Reward Trip

Monday 7th October 2013 proved to be another fantastic reward trip day out at Drayton Manor Park and Zoo. Students earned a place on the trip through their hard work and effort last year. They needed to have earned at least 100 house points, have 95% attendance and zero behaviour points. We had to take 3 coaches to carry the 187 students who went on the trip. Staff and students always look forward to the annual trip to Staffordshire where the theme park offers rollercoasters for the braver ones and Thomas Land for the younger (and some older!!) less brave ones! Some of our students and staff also took a break from the noise of the rides and looked around the Zoo. The students thoroughly enjoyed their time, going many times on a variety of rides so that they got full value out of their day. It was particularly noticeable that the biggest queue was for the dodgems where Mr Watkins was targeted!! I would like to thank the staff who went on the trip for all their help, the staff who helped organise things behind the scenes at school and of course our children for making the day a huge success!

Cricket Opening Ceremony

The Cricket Opening Ceremony was a great success! Students supported the event by paying to watch and money was also raised from selling scones with jam and cream, face painting and a nail bar. As a school, we raised just under £400.

Student Voice

Our new term has seen all of the tutor groups in the school taking part in a democratic vote to elect their new MP to represent them in Pittville Parliament this year. Miss Addison and Miss Davis, who lead student voice in the school, were delighted with the enthusiasm with which students took part in this process. In their first meeting, our MP's looked at the themes and topics which they will be discussing and debating this year. A quick start to assisting vital decisions in the school was made, with a vote on lunchtime arrangements. MP's also went back to discuss this with their tutor groups and our tutors kindly documented these discussions for us. Our MP's have made a superb start to the new term. Follow their progress by looking at the updates on the website.

Parliament trip

On Wednesday 2nd October 2013 Miss Addison took a group of our Pittville Parliament MP's to the Houses of Parliament in London. The students from years 8-11 were given a tour of Parliament and learnt a lot about how Parliament functions. Students were allowed to stand in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords. However we were told very firmly that there was no sitting allowed on the MP's benches! All of the students, and Miss Addison, found it very exciting to be stood exactly where our Prime Minister stands and where such important decisions are made. The Pittville Parliament MP's then participated in an ‘election and voting workshop’ in the afternoon. Our MP's learnt a great deal about government and politics in general which they will be able to apply to their own roles in school.

Abbott House

The new school year saw the arrival of several new staff into the Abbott House team. Miss Addison took over from Mr Poole as acting Head of House, with Miss Guinan starting as Assistant Head of House. They will be working with Miss Davies the pastoral manager. Abbott House welcomes Mr Hackman, Miss Wheelwright and Miss Underhill. Abbott House students have been busy this term working with their tutors to nominate our house charity for the year. In addition to this Abbott House launched their ‘ethos project’ this half term. All of our tutor groups are working together to devise a motto or phrase which encapsulates the ethos of Abbott House. We have already had some fantastic ideas and the house team looks forward to seeing what else the students can devise!

Aston House

A super successful end to the last school year, where we witnessed some amazing performances at sports day from Aston House, which nearly saw a clean sweep of winning every year group.  I was immensely proud and I would like to say ‘well done’ to all who took part and made it such a successful day.  At the end of last term we waved goodbye to Miss Storey our Assistant Head of House, however Miss Davis has been appointed into this position and has already been busy, organising the “buddy reading scheme” and training up our new House Captains, Kerry Ann Johnson and Natasha Chinyowa.  The new school year has seen us say hello to new staff joining the house, Miss Brown, Miss Purnell and Miss Stewart.  At a recent assembly Morgan Gordon, a local PCSO, came to speak to us about our house charity, the ‘Aston Project’.  This was a really interesting assembly and evidently it inspired many of you to sign up and join.  I look forward to hearing all about the fun things you get up to!  Aston students ran a stall at Pittville’s Christmas Craft fair where they raised over £85 selling hand-made bunting and freshly baked mince pies. A group of dedicated year 9 students spent two weeks giving up their lunchtime to make all of the Christmas themed bunting, and all of the money they made will go towards Aston House’s charity.

Livingstone House

On behalf of Livingstone House I would like to welcome our new Year 7 students.  7Li1 have settled in really well with their tutor Miss James. I would also like to welcome Miss Bury who has taken over from Miss Addison as my Assistant Head of Livingstone House. I would like to thank Miss Addison for all her support and hard work as my assistant since the re-introduction of the house system here at Pittville. Livingstone House students have been busy this term working with their tutors to win the first house competition.  Livingstone also won the ‘Rotary Club Mile of Coins’ competition, well done everyone! We are now looking forward to the house cross country competition. My house captains, Sophie Brewer and Charis Pardoe have settled into their role well, assisting in uniform checks and coming up with great new ideas for our house so that every student has the chance to be recognised. The ‘Spirit of Livingstone’ is an idea, from my house captains, where students and staff can nominate students for something they have seen or been impressed with and place their nominations in tutor boxes for me to award a certificate (and chocolate!) to the winners.

PE Report

We have had a successful term this year with the girls’ fixtures. The Year 8/9 football team are currently undefeated, having won all of their matches so far in the league. Results of these matches were; Cleeve 1-0, Bournside 5-0, All Saints 3-0. A special mention goes to Naomi Price for scoring a hatrick in the match against Bournside. Four netball matches have been played so far, resulting in two wins and two defeats. Unfortunately due to the rain last term, not as many netball fixtures have been played, all of these have been rearranged for this term. The girls have had two block fixtures of hockey against Bournside and played 5, winning four of their 5 games. The girls' success rate is increasing every year, currently we have won 80% of all our fixtures. We look forward to matches against Tewkesbury, Cotswold, Winchcombe, St. Edwards, King's and Balcarras in the weeks to come. Well done to all students who have taken part in fixtures!!

Rugby

Year 7 have made a massive amount of progress considering this is their first season of contact rugby.  They competed well at the Balcarras Tournament with three narrow defeats, all within 5 points.  A special mention for Sam Meredith (Year 7) who has led the team brilliantly and has also played for the Year 8 team.  The Year 8 team have had an exceptional season.  They won the Emerging Schools Rugby Tournament at the Prince of Wales Stadium, playing Winchcombe, Pates, All Saints and Chosen Hill in the group stages and beating Cleeve 15-10 in the final.  Special mention to Scott Crombie and Marian Vu for their outstanding performances.  Year 9 have had a topsy turvy season, putting in some brave performances against some very rugby traditional schools, especially Churchdown who knocked us out of the EDF Cup.  Special mention to Josh Daniel who led by example, never gave up and wore his heart on his sleeve.

Year 8 Geography Trip

As part of the geography course we visited Southam to undertake an enquiry into whether a wind farm should be built at Southam.  Students spent time collecting data which was then analysed when they returned to school.

PTFA Christmas Craft Fair

This took place on Wednesday 27th November 2013 6.00 – 9.00pm and raised approximately £500.

European Languages Day

This took place on Thursday 26th September 2013.  All lessons began with a 5-10 minute starter activity as well as activities during tutor time.  The canteen menu for that day was devised with a ‘world food’ theme.  A very successful day. 

Maths Trip to Racecourse

As part of our on-going partnership with Cheltenham Racecourse, we were given the opportunity to take a group of Year 7 maths students to visit the racecourse on Friday 18th October 2013.  ‘Maths in Action’ gave the students the opportunity to experience a variety of activities related to maths in connection with horse racing.

Year 11 Information Evenings

Last term we held two Year 11 information evenings.  One targeting high achievers and the other the C/D borderline students.  Both evenings were a great success and very informative for both parents and students.  

Achievement Evening

This was held on Tuesday 22nd October 2013.  Over 60 students, past and present, won awards for achievement and progress at KS3 and KS4 in each subject area.  There were also special house awards, sports awards and a number of surprise awards which were presented by Justice Williams MBE.

Wear it Pink Day

On Friday 25th November 2013 staff and students alike wore the colour pink for ‘Wear it Pink Day’.  £450 was raised for Cancer Research and the award for the funniest costume must go to Miss Underhill for wearing a pink pig costume and tutu!

Mock Interviews – Year 11

On Wednesday 27th November 2013 Year 11 had a 15 minute mock interview with Enterprise Business Partnership.  They  received feedback on their interview and application form.

Students meet Prince Charles

Two Students from Pittville School were delighted to meet HRH Prince of Wales during a Royal visit to the region.  The Prince spent time discussing the benefits of BITC’s (Business in the Community’s) Business Class scheme where local business support students through developing their employability skills, providing work placements and running mock interview sessions.

Art Auction

Thank you so much to those people that came along to support the art auction on 4th December 2013.  The support and generosity that people have shown is incredible.  We raised an incredible £277.44 for the three house charities! What a fantastic amount!  The total raised will be split between the charities selected by each of the houses.

Radio Interview

Nine Pittville students entered a competition called ‘The Poetry Games’ a national poetry competition, and were lucky enough to have their poems published.   James Lambert, Liam Seabright and Sophie Overton, along with Miss Wheelwright, were interviewed by Winchcombe Radio.  They had the opportunity to read out their poems and this was broadcast on Saturday 16th November 2013.

Able, Gifted and Talented STEM day – 24th October 2013

A group of Year 9 students attended Winchcombe School for a STEM Challenge Day.   The task was to design and build a system for sending a secret message.   Students each had to work on a specific task and were given three hours to construct and test their systems before presenting them to the whole group.

British Ballet Organisation

Lauren Cresswell in Year 8 attended the British Ballet Organisation on the 10th November 2013 for an audition and has been offered a place to start in 2014.  Very well done!

Goodbyes

We say goodbye to Carly Newman who starts her maternity leave and wish her well for the new arrival. We also say goodbye to Jamie McLaren (science technician) and wish him well for the future.

Christmas

On Friday 13th December 2013 we held a very successful Christmas Concert and our Year 7’s also held their carol service on Wednesday 18th December 2013.  

Please note that school will finish at 12.15pm on Friday the 20th December 2013, buses have been booked for 12.30pm.

May I take this opportunity to thank all parents and carers for their support this term.  Have a lovely safe Christmas break.  School re-opens on Tuesday 7th January 2014.

R Gilpin

Headteacher

July 2013 Friday, July 19, 2013

NEWSLETTER
July 2013

Dear Parents/Carers

As we approach the end of another successful year at Pittville I thought I would take the opportunity to thank you for all your support and to wish you a wonderful summer break (let’s hope the weather is kind to us all!). I would like to update you on all the exciting events that have taken place over the last term. We have many reasons to be ‘Proud of Pittville’.

Year 11 Prom
This was held at Cheltenham Racecourse on Friday 28th June 2013. It was well attended by students and staff and everyone had a great time. The staff at the racecourse were full of praise for the way our students conducted themselves. They were a real credit to the school. My thanks go to Mrs Cooper for all the effort she put in to organising what is always a terrific event.

Year 10 Work Experience
Year 10 students have just returned from their work experience visits. The feedback from their placements has been very positive. Well done to all the students.

Year 11 Appointments
Congratulations to Jamie Davis, Head Boy, Jade Mason, Head Girl, Shannon Power and Ryan Hearn, Deputies. We have a very talented student leadership team in the school. Well done to each of them and to all the students who applied for the posts. Quite an achievement.

Year 7 Science trip to the ‘Think Tank’ at Birmingham Science Museum
On Friday 14th June 2013 the science department took 75 of our Year 7 students on a day trip to the ‘Think Tank’ centre at Birmingham Science Museum. This day allowed the students the opportunity to expand their experience of science outside of the classroom and help them progress their learning and understanding. During the day the students had the opportunity to take part in three workshops looking at different areas of science. During workshop one they went ‘into orbit’ in the planetarium, where they discovered why we get seasons on Earth and how we can use the stars to help us find our way home. In the second workshop the students were put through their paces as ‘Forensic Investigators’. They gathered, analysed, recorded and evaluated different evidence from a crime scene using microscopes, computer programs and authentic fingerprinting techniques to help them to solve a crime. In the third and final workshop ‘Actions and Reactions’ the students had the chance to take part in hands on activities designed to demonstrate the effects that alcohol, drugs and a poor diet can have on the body. This activity enabled them to more fully appreciate the scientific risks associated with substance misuse. A hugely successful day enjoyed by all, which we hope to be able to run again in the future!

Glenfall Sports Day – 2nd July 2013
A number of students helped at Glenfall Primary School with their sports day. They were fantastic representatives of our school and were superb supporting the Glenfall staff in organising the afternoon and ensuring its smooth running.

PTFA
The PTFA will hold its first meeting of the new term on Tuesday, 17th September 2013 at 7.00pm. All are welcome.

Art Exhibition
On Thursday, 4th July 2013 the art department were proud to present a summer exhibition of Year 11 Art and Photography work. Invitations were sent out to students, families, staff, governors and local schools and there was a fantastic turn out. Guests were able to enjoy canapés and beverages whilst admiring some of the inspiring work on display. The art department would like to thank everyone that came along and helped to make the evening a success.

Careers Pod for Year 9
On Wednesday, 10th July 2013 selected Year 9 students were invited to have a careers session in the ‘Yes Skills Pod’. This was a large inflatable classroom which is Wi-Fi enabled with various multi-media resources. The idea behind the pod was to help engage students and have the opportunity to talk to an expert adviser who delivered careers and employability sessions for students.

Japanese Students
On Friday, 5th July 2013 we hosted a visit by 31 Japanese students from Kosei High School in Tokyo. The Japanese students met their Year 10 student 'hosts' and were given a tour of the school. They then
spent time in maths and technology lessons and found out about each other's school and culture. At the end of the day the visitors performed to Year 7 students and their hosts. They did speeches and sang a song. Students were then able to try origami (paper craft) and calligraphy. In exchange a number of Year 10 girls performed a dance to ‘One Direction’!

Sports Day
This year, Sports Day was held at the Prince of Wales Stadium and was a great success. Over 150 students participated in the 16 events that took place on the day. Not only did the athletes compete well, the spectators were extremely encouraging of their houses, cheering them along the way. PE and PA prefects were fantastic with the support they gave to the staff to enable all events to run smoothly and encouraged and supported the participants throughout their events. We are proud to announce that two school records were beaten on the day by Brittany Sutton-Page for the shot put and Ross Barnes for the 200m. We are planning to hold Sports Day at the stadium again next year. We have had a successful rounders’ season with 25 fixtures taking place, winning approximately 50% of all matches. Notable wins came when Years 7, 8 and 10 beat Winchcombe and Bournside. A special mention to Sophie Mustoe, Nathan Beames, Danny T and Brendan Street for 100% attendance to the Sportsability Club.

New Cricket Wicket
Pittville is extremely pleased with the installation of our new non-turf match cricket pitch and 2 bay practice facilities. The completion of the project was funded by the school, a grant from the Lords Taverners and money kindly donated by the PTFA. The pitch will be officially opened in September with a staff vs. governor cricket match organised by the PE department.

Practical Citizenship Day
On Thursday 27th June 2013, 27 students from Pittville School took part in a ‘Practical Citizenship Day’ hosted by Dean Close School along with students from other Gloucestershire schools. Students from years 7-10 from a variety of different backgrounds and ethnicities took part in a range of different activities throughout the day including African dancing, comic making and arts and crafts.

Popes Close
The residents of Popes Close came to visit Pittville earlier this term. They were very impressed with what they saw. Since the visit we have arranged for the residents to have ICT lessons with students from school.

Gloucestershire Youth Choir
Two Pittville students, Zoe Daniels and Grace Tomlin, performed at this year’s Music for Youth’s National Festival on 3rd July 2013. This prestigious event provides young and talented musicians with the opportunity to perform at the highest level of youth music making and to represent their county.

Ducks
Many students have been keenly following the fortunes of the Pittville ducks. I am pleased to announce that three ducklings have survived and we hope to relocate them to a nearby lake.
School Nurse
The School Nurse Service offers a confidential drop-in service for children on Mondays between 1-2pm. In addition, they also undertake the immunisations in school. The HPV vaccination is offered routinely to all 12-13 year old girls to protect them from cervical cancer later in life. All children are offered a routine booster for diphtheria, tetanus and polio given as a single jab. They also accept requests for school nursing support from school where they have concerns about a student. More information can be found on www.glos-care.nhs.uk

Summer School
A number of Year 7 students will be attending a literacy ’Summer School’ here at Pittville. The week will consist of lessons based around reading and writing skills – an intensive literacy programme which will aim to address the specific needs of each child. This will allow teachers to work with individuals; to diagnose their particular literacy needs and plan a succession of interventions designed to make them both more confident and more effective in the classroom.

Gloucester Road Playgroup
Gloucester Road Playgroup is holding a celebration and reunion on Saturday 17th August 2013 at St Marks Methodist Church between 2pm – 5pm. If you, or someone you know, has been connected with the playgroup over the last 40 years please call in for a cup of tea. Further information can be obtained by ringing 01242 583613.

House News
Aston House
Most recently in our minds are the tremendous performances put in by all the competitors enabling us to win not only the overall Sports Day cup, but to also claim the prizes for Years 8, 9 and 10. Special thanks must go to the tremendous support from the crowd, cheering the competitors on and the support of our staff, all dressed in our house colour of green. Another notable achievement this year has been the successful implementation of the "buddy reading scheme." A number of Year 10 students have been helping Year 7 students to read at lunch time. Aston has also seen success this term in the Art Competition and considerable success during the cricket house matches, in particular the Year 10 boys’ team, which witnessed some demon bowling from James Gill. We have appointed 20 new house prefects, and also seen Jade Mason appointed to the role of head girl. Well done Jade! We also say goodbye and thank you to Jake and Ella, our outgoing House Captains, who have been replaced by Natasha Chinyowa and Kerry- Anne Johnson. During their interviews both girls showed excellent maturity and have some great ideas for the future and I look forward to working with them. We are losing a valuable member of our house team this term by saying goodbye to our assistant head of house Miss Storey, who is off to pastures new and on behalf of the house I would like to say, you will be missed, good luck and thank you! Finally, thank you to all students and staff for your hard work and support towards the success of Aston House this year and I wish you a very happy summer holiday.
Mr Watkins - Head of Aston House

Livingstone House
The Livingstone charity bash took place on Thursday 4th July 2013 in the school theatre. John Ganner (lead singer of the red hot band ‘Chilliface’ organised and promoted this charity gig). Our very own Ed Sheerin - Darcy Haken (Year 10) opened with an acoustic set which warmed up the crowd nicely. Dante Miller (Year 11) then gave the audience a medley of songs both on piano and guitar engaging brilliantly with the crowd with his cheeky humour and great voice. Gareth Morgan (compere) linked together the acts with funny anecdotes and banter. He then introduced the superb Sadie Roach. This was the final performance at school from our much admired Sadie. She plays the piano so beautifully in a ‘Jazz style’ and sings with a voice so mature for her years. The four numbers she played were recorded on the audience’s phones as Sadie is sure to go on to great things when she leaves us to pursue her music scholarship in the United States. An emotional farewell from Sadie and a standing ovation followed. The genre of musical talent then changed….. Chiiliface had arrived!! Matthew Marsh on drums donning a velvet Mario suit, Dennis Harrop on guitar looking cool in his striking white Elvis suit and lead singer John Ganner in his banana outfit!! Enough said!! From ‘One Direction’ covers to the classic ’Barbie Girl’ by Aqua. The crowd were by now out of their seats dancing near their idols at the front of the stage. Everyone left happy (with ears ringing!!). I would like to thank all the students involved in what I hope to be an annual charity event. Thank you to the staff in Livingstone that supported us in particular Mr Litherland for collecting money and Mr Edwards for recording the event. Thank you to those students who bought tickets and attended. Finally, huge thanks to Mr Ash who along with Livingstone’s John Ganner did a great job!! Well done!! I look forward to next year’s bash!!
Mr Kavanagh - Head of Livingstone House

Abbott House
Abbott’s Got Talent!
Some of our finest musicians and performers took to the stage in June in support of the Three Charities Concert produced by John Garner (of Livingstone House). Three of the four acts on stage were from Abbott with Dante Miller giving his final ever Pittville performance; Darcy Haken delighting the crowd with an acoustic set; and Sadie Roach showcasing her immense musical talent one last time before her move to the Duke Ellington School of the Arts next year. We will all miss Sadie very much and wish her all the best for the future.
Abbott Triumphant Again!
For a second year running Abbott House have been crowned inter-house champions. Despite a determined final push from Aston House, who closed the gap with a fine display on sports day, Abbott have retained the Richard Gilpin Trophy which they won in the inaugural competition last year. The final tally of house points showed Abbot with 161.29; Aston with 151.28; and Livingstone bringing up the rear with 147.58. Mr Poole sends his congratulations to all students in Abbott House for another successful year. Mr Watkins and Mr Kavanagh were not available for comment.
Mr Poole – Head of Abbott House

Staff Farewells and Appointments
We say farewell to the following staff:
• Mrs Buckingham, assistant headteacher, who has decided to resign and will not be returning to school in September.
• Miss Oakes in Drama, Mr Boulton in ICT and Mr Selman in English.
• Two of our Achievement For All workers, Helen Mitchell and Alex Boonham-Payne, together with Miss Storey, Assistant Head of Aston House, who are all going on to train to be teachers in September. We wish them all the best with their careers.
• We also say goodbye to AFA assistant Mr Jones.
• Mrs Croft who has been with the science department is also leaving us.

I would like to say thank you for all that these staff have done for Pittville and on behalf of all the staff, students and governors we wish them all the very best for the future.

We welcome:
• Rachel Lewis (SENCO)
• Mike Hackman (Business Studies)
• Clare Wheelwright (English)
• Zea Purnell (Drama)
• Carly Brown and Maggie Shaw (Science)
• Amelia Stewart (Art)

We return to school after the summer on Tuesday 3rd September 2013 for Years 7 and 11 and Wednesday the 4th September 2013 for years 8, 9 and 10. Please note that winter uniform should be worn from September – no polo shirts. We would like to give you early notification that school will close earlier than normal at 12.00pm on Friday 6th September 2013 for staff training.

I wish you all a great summer.

R Gilpin
Headteacher

May 2013 Friday, May 24, 2013

NEWSLETTER

MAY 2013

 

Dear Parents/Carers

 

I am delighted to be welcoming Karen Foster to Pittville as our new deputy Headteacher.  As I am sure you are aware Karen is joining us from Balcarras. She joins the school officially after half-term.

Year 11 Study Support

Year 11 students have been given information about extra study support sessions that staff are offering during the half-term break. Please encourage students to attend these sessions.

 

Cotswold Bike Ride

Congratulations to Mr Gilpin who completed the 40 mile Cotswold Bike ride on Sunday 19th May 2013 in record time (at least that is what he is telling everyone).  Currently he has raised over £150 for the British Heart Foundation.

 

Jazz Festival

On Sunday, 5th May 2013, the Soul Band took to the stage at Cheltenham Jazz Festival for the "Jazz It Up" event in Montpellier Gardens.  Each year, jazz ensembles from local schools are able to perform as part of this prestigious event.  The Soul Band performed five songs, led by Greg Davies (who is leading the band whilst Mrs Smith is on maternity leave), to a large audience, including many staff, parents and pupils, as well as members of the public.  Kyle Gamble made his debut on the bass after learning the instrument for a matter of weeks and only joining the Soul Band a month before the performance. It was, sadly, one of the last chances to see the Soul Band in its current format as we are saying goodbye to the Year 11s.  Thank you to everyone who came and supported and we hope to see even more of you next year!

 

Geography Field Trip to Dorset

16 students and 4 members of staff enjoyed a sunny weekend in Dorset. Students explored and investigated the River Wey from source to mouth, and looked at the processes of coastal erosion which have created magnificent land forms such as Durdle Door and Lulworth Cove. It wasn't all geography though; students and staff enjoyed fish and chips on Weymouth beach and held a very competitive game of beach volleyball! Every opportunity was taken to consume ice cream in the warm sunshine. An enjoyable fieldtrip, which will give these students invaluable, hands on understanding of fluvial and coastal processes.

 

Summer Fair – Saturday 22nd June 2013

Pittville School’s P.T.F.A. is delighted to announce that they will be holding a Summer Fair on Saturday 22nd June 2013, between 12.00 and 2.30pm.  Admission is free. There will be stalls, performances, competitions, inflatables, light refreshments, raffle and bar to name but a few.  Entertainment and fun for all!  Please support this major fund-raising event.

 

Impact – After School Literacy Workshops

This term we have successfully implemented our after school literacy club, IMPACT.  We have been joined every Tuesday afternoon by up to seven students and two sets of parents.  The students have been learning and consolidating their knowledge through lessons focussing on spelling strategies, how to use capital letters, how to choose the correct homophone and have developed their writing skills in line with the whole school literacy targets.  Students have shown excellent levels of commitment and parents have been extremely supportive.  These sessions involved paired work, small group work and one-to-one support.  The students approach activities with enthusiasm and always achieve the challenge learning aims.  These workshops will continue after half-term and begin again in October with the new year 7 and year 8 students.  If you would like to be involved, please contact Mrs R Green or Mrs L Gough.     

Accelerated Reading Scheme

The Accelerated Reading Scheme has been running for a whole year now.  We have been pleasantly surprised by the success of the scheme so far, and have decided to include next year’s Year 9s, so that we have all our Key Stage 3 students being encouraged to read more.  This will impact on all their school work, as an ability to enjoy reading will give them more confidence and set them up for better exam grades and therefore a better future.  We have seven pupils (3 Year 7s and 4 Year 8s) who are word millionaires, i.e. they have read over a million words since September 2012, and two of our Year 7s have read over two million words! Every time a student takes a quiz on a book which they have read, they will get points, depending on how well they do in the quiz.  We have linked the rewards which students receive for successful answers into the school’s Vivos reward scheme, so pupils can see an immediate reward for their efforts and be encouraged to read more books and get more points from quizzes. Please help us by encouraging your child to read at every opportunity and together we can give them a better future.

 

Dance Gala

Congratulations to all the students who performed in Pittville’s annual dance gala, ‘Got 2 Dance’ on the 18th March 2013. Over 70 students dazzled us with their dancing skills, performing all different styles of dance ranging from contemporary to street and breakdance. It was a very successful evening and the students were fantastic. Thank you to everyone who came and supported the show, we hope to see you next year.

 

Little Shop of Horrors

Pittville students recently performed in the iconic musical, ‘Little Shop Of Horrors’. Both nights were very well received, with people dancing in the isles to the catchy tunes conducted by Miss Underhill. The leads of the show did a fantastic and professional job and were supported by an enthusiastic and energetic chorus. Overall the experience was wonderful with the entire cast and crew coming together to produce a memorable show.  

 

French Students

On Thursday 25th April 2013 we welcomed 32 French students from the outskirts of Paris into the school. Our year 10 students gave them a tour of the school and spent the morning talking to them, then the students joined together to teach nursery rhymes from each language and to write songs. In the afternoon the French students gave a presentation about their school and about the French Candlemas celebration. Both our students and the French students thoroughly enjoyed the day and many friends were made. The French students and teachers also came to watch Little Shop of Horrors and were amazed at our students' performance. All in all a great day for Pittville!

Glenfall Primary School

The Art department visited Glenfall Primary School this term to run a ‘pattern portraits’ workshop. This was part of a week-long exploration into the theme of pattern by Year 5 students at Glenfall. Miss Addison, along with Tallulah Palmer-Wilcock and Niracha Singchaiyapoom from Year 8, were delighted to be able to go along and take part. Students created their own collaged portraits of famous Artists before adding patterns using a range of different materials. Miss Addison and the Pittville students were incredibly impressed with the work that the Glenfall students produced. The art department welcomed the Year 5 students back to Pittville on Monday 20th May 2013 to participate in a clay workshop.

 

Swindon Village Primary School

Students from Swindon Village Primary school attended a Photography & Art workshop. The students from years 2-6 learnt how to take professional portrait shots using a DSLR and studio lighting. Once the photos had been taken they worked with them to create unique, interesting self-portraits.

 

Scaling the Peak

On 10th and 12th April 2013 we hosted an event for trainee teachers at the University of Gloucestershire which culminated in some very creative and inspirational lessons being taught to some of our KS3 classes during the afternoons. One of the lessons, for example, involved simulating an evacuation in the event of a missile strike from North Korea! Our students responded very positively to the event and gained some useful knowledge about current affairs. All of the trainee teachers commented on the positive learning climate which they experienced at Pittville.

 

Flying Start

"Flying Start" is a group of KS3 students working in teams in collaboration with GE Aviation to manufacture a glider, this exciting project has now led to an increased uptake to the Technology Club. The club runs every Thursday after school in Room 42 with Mr Simkiss.

 

House Art Competition

Students and Staff continue to enter House Art competitions. The calibre and quality of the work is improving with each competition. The results are hugely varied with some fantastically creative images/work created. See the school's website for an online gallery of the work.

PE News

Congratulations to Brittany Sutton-Page who has been selected to join the South West regional hockey squad and to Ross Barnes who has been offered a place on a 2-day training course at a south-west camp for England rugby.  Well done!

 

We have a busy half term coming up. Listed below are some of the events as a reminder for students and parents:

 

  • Year 7 science trip to Bristol 14th June 2013
  • Sports Day 1st July 2013
  • Work Experience week 8th – 12th July 2013
  • YES Pod – Year 9 – 10th July 2013
  • Pittville’s Got Talent – 11th July 2013
  • Activities week 15th – 19th July 2013

 

Bike It

After half term we are launching 'Bike It.'' Our 'Bike It' team have been working hard to create a promotional video clip to encourage more students and staff to cycle to work. We are starting a cycling club next term which will be on a first come, first serve basis. So make sure you get your letter back in to the PE department as soon as possible. Another initiative that is taking place is 'Golden Lock.' This is where a golden lock will be randomly placed on a bike - whoever's bike it is gets a prize!

 

Stem

On the 20th June 2013 there will be a STEM event after school. Run in conjunction with "Young Engineers" the project will be looking for budding engineers and designers to work in teams to design and make a "device" for moving water. Look out for a letter inviting you and your child. The session will run from 3 - 5.30pm.

 

Art Exhibition

The Year 11 Art and Photography students will have their work displayed in an end of term Exhibition in Studio 46. The work will be on display for the week 1st July - 5th July 2013 and there will be a private viewing for students, parents and governors on the evening of Thursday 4th July 2013 from 3-5pm.

 

Goodbyes

We say goodbye to Miss Chrishop, Miss Simeon and Mrs Crighton.  On behalf of all the staff, students and governors I would like to thank them for their contribution to the school.  We send our best wishes for their future.

 

 

R Gilpin

Headteacher

 

March 2013 Thursday, March 21, 2013

 

 

NEWSLETTER

MARCH 2013

Dear Parents/Carers

It has been a short but very busy term. I would like to update you on the many events that have taken place. The new term begins on Monday 8 April 2013.

Deputy Headteacher

Mr Davis will be leaving the school at the end of this term to take up an appointment as Headteacher of a school in Birmingham. The Governing Body would like to take this opportunity to thank Mr Davis for his service and loyalty to the school over the past 9 years. On behalf of all the students, staff and governors we wish Mr Davis every success in his new role.

 

I am delighted to announce the appointment of Miss Karen Foster, as the new Deputy Headteacher, who will be joining the school on 1st June 2013. Miss Foster is currently head of the science department at Balcarras School and previous to that worked at Chipping Campden School. Miss Foster has worked closely with the school for many years and I am sure you will join me in extending a very warm welcome to Pittville.

 

Scott Lewis

We were all shocked and saddened to hear the news of the tragic death of Scott who left Pittville last year. Scott was a popular student who worked exceptionally hard. He was simply a terrific young man. Our thoughts continue to be with Scott’s sister, Megan, who is in Year 10, his family and his many friends.

Year 11 Easter Revision

There are a number of revision sessions taking place for Year 11 students during the school holidays. I know that these will be well attended by students. Year 11 students need to keep up the hard work as we move closer to their final examinations this summer.

Attendance

We continue to work hard as a school to raise the profile of attendance and the link between good attendance and excellent performance at GCSE. It is vitally important that we work in partnership with parents to ensure that our students’ attendance remains high so that they continue to make excellent progress at Pittville. 

 

Medical Room Protocol

Can I remind parents/carers that they should only collect their children from school due to a medical reason if they have been contacted by a member of staff. Students must not contact parents themselves and arrange to be collected.

Options Evening

We were delighted with the attendance at the Year 9 Options Evening and also with how positive the students were. There was much well informed discussion taking place between parents/carers, students and staff. Well done to all who attended.

 

Y11 BTEC Concert

On Wednesday, 16th January 2013, the BTEC music group's hard work paid off when they successfully staged a concert as part of their coursework.  They were completely responsible for organising the concert - from initial planning meetings to choosing the acts, advertising the concert to setting up the equipment, performances, selling tickets and hosting the event.  A variety of acts were performed, including solos, duets and band. The audience were treated to some of the finest talent Pittville has to offer.  The support for the event was fantastic and the BTEC music group raised nearly £60 towards the Year 11 Prom.

 

Pates Visit

On Thursday 17th January 2013 we took a small group of students to Pates Grammar School.  They attended an Information, Advice and Guidance session given by an outside speaker and then spent time in the lessons for subjects they are considering studying at sixth form.

 

Year 11 High Achievers’ Workshops

Thank you to Mr Davis for organising workshops for students working towards the highest grades at GCSE. The students have been involved in workshops delivered by Vicky Taylor, an outside consultant. The workshops have offered the students advice on study skills and revision techniques.

 

Developing The School – Parent’s Views

The Headteacher and the Governing Body are constantly working together to improve the school. We take account of the views of everyone involved in the school including the staff, students and parents. Members of the Senior Leadership Team and the Governing Body are meeting on the 10th April 2013 to plan the next steps towards making Pittville an outstanding school and we would be delighted if any parents would like to join us in the afternoon to share their views and be part of this forward planning. If you are interested please contact Linda Ferrabee on 01242 548755 by Monday 8th April 2013.

 

Maths and English results

We are delighted with the progress our Year 11 students are making. Students have taken GCSEs in maths and English; the results are very promising and indicate just how hard the students are working as they approach their final exams. Keep up the good work. A reminder to Year 11 that they cannot afford to miss any time from school at the moment.

French Theatre Company

On Monday 25th February 2013, the language department was pleased to welcome a French play performed by two actors from the professional Onati Company. All Year 7 and Year 8 pupils had the amazing opportunity to enjoy a funny and interactive play performed mostly in French.  Beth Hatten, Year 8 said, ‘it was amazing and I would love to see another one again if I was able to.’

Japanese Students

On Wednesday 6th March 2013 we played host to 41 Japanese students from the Reitaku High School in Tokyo.  They were part of a 60 strong party on a visit to England organised by Inlingua of Cheltenham.  The Japanese students met their Year 10 student 'hosts' and were given a tour of the school.  They then took part in a question and answer session where both sets of students found out about each other's school and culture.  The visiting students then spent two lessons in various faculties to get a taste of what an English school is like.  At the end of the day the visitors performed to Year 7 students and their hosts.  They did a speech, sang two songs and performed a traditional Japanese fisherman's dance from Hokkaido.  Students were then able to try various cultural games such as Shuji (Japanese Calligraphy), Origami (paper craft) and Hanetsuki (badminton with wooden paddles and a shuttlecock).

Science trip to Balcarras

The science department ran a trip to Balcarras School on Tuesday 19th March 2013.  This was a valuable opportunity to take part in two exciting science events.  These were a one hour Physical Science Workshop followed by a Robotics Workshop.

 

Science trip to London

On Friday 15th March 2013 a group of students attended the ‘Big Bang Fair’ in London. The ‘Big Bang Fair’ consisted of an exciting array of stalls and events with a science theme. The trip was organized by the Design and Technology department at our partner school, Balcarras.

 

Comic Relief – Red Nose Day

To show our support for this charity we hosted an inter-house competition giving our students the opportunity to wear their own clothes to school.  The focus for Comic Relief this year was improving the life of people in slum/shanty town areas across the globe.  To give the students an understanding of the challenges facing these people, the geography department ran sessions throughout the week during tutor time.  This culminated with a competition in which each house was given the task of building their own shelter using materials provided; materials which would be used in real slum areas.  In addition, the students considered how we are connected to people across the world.  Students were asked to wear an item or items of clothing that have been manufactured in another country with a label indicating where they were manufactured.

 

New Cricket Wicket

Our thanks go to Jane Tetley, the clerk to the Governing Body, who has been busy bidding for money to fund projects here at Pittville. We are delighted to announce that the school has been granted £6,000 towards a new cricket wicket. This will be a tremendous resource to inspire both boys and girls to emulate their cricketing heroes.

 

Help the Heroes  

The school held a ‘Help the Heroes’ Day to raise money for charity.  Students dressed up as their favourite heroes and ate red, white and blue biscuits during the day.  The students organised the event themselves as part of their BTEC vocational studies course and raised £350 for the Help the Heroes Charity. 

Student Parliament meet Martin Horwood

On 1st February 2013 we held another meeting of the Pittville Parliament.  The meeting was particularly special as the guest speaker was the MP for Cheltenham, Martin Horwood.  Mr Horwood was invited into school to tell students about what his job as an MP entails.  Students had worked together in their last parliament meeting to think about some interesting and challenging questions to pose to Mr Horwood and by all accounts they put Mr Horwood through his paces.  Mr Horwood was very interested in how the roles and duties of a Pittville MP compared to those of his own.  Pittville Parliament is very grateful to Mr Horwood for giving up his time to come and visit us. Well done to all.

 

PE Update:

  • Girls’ Football

Pittville is the only school in Cheltenham to have all three age groups (U12, U14 and U16’s) qualify for the Girls' County Football Finals. Pittville had an outstanding run of results coming 2nd in the Year 11 and Year 7 district tournaments and 1st in the Year 9 category. Special mention must go to the Year 8 girls who played a year above themselves and won the tournament. Pittville are fast becoming a school to be reckoned with and we hope this success will be replicated in the summer term with the girls’ rounders fixtures.

  • PE ‘Jump Rope’

Thank you to all students who took part in this event.  We raised £758.07 for the British Heart Foundation.

  • Staff netball match

The house netball match for staff was a great success. The year 11 BTEC students ran the competition on 7th February 2013. Although it rained almost non-stop the competitive spirit was a determined one and saw three very hard fought games being played. Over 100 pupils came to watch and the pupils raised over £70.00 for the prom from a cake sale and entry fees. Although Abbott and Livingstone were good contenders, there was no beating the experience and organisation of Aston House. Aston won both their matches convincingly, congratulations to all who took part and to the pupils for organising such a great event.

  • Inter-house Football Competition

Aston House won the inter-house football competition.  It was a very tightly fought battle with Aston and Livingstone both finishing on 220 points.  Aston then won the competition on goal difference.

Old Uniform

A plea from our PTFA:

“If you have uniform that your sons and daughters have grown out of (blazers, trousers, skirts) please don’t throw them out but bring them to reception. We can make excellent use of them in school”.

Mrs Radburn

 

Bike it

Pittville has officially become a “Bike It” participant (as has our Partner School Balcarras). We have a Bike It group of students who will be organising events to encourage students and staff to bike to school. Watch this space!

Summer Uniform

The summer polo shirts are now available to purchase from ‘Schooltogs’, the company that have taken over from ‘The Famous’.  They cost £7.50 for ages 9-15 and £9.95 for small, medium and large.  They can be worn after the Easter holidays.

 

Coming Soon!

Following on from our new kitchen, this summer we are delighted to announce the arrival of our new dining room ‘servery’. We are sure students will love the bright modern feel to the cafe where they will be able to select from a wide variety of freshly made healthy food.  We can now add to our existing hot food counters with a new deli counter, chilled salad bar & freshly filled sandwich & baguette bar.

 

We shall be offering cooked breakfasts every morning and a selection of savouries and brunch items at break. Students will still be able to buy a ‘meal deal’ from any counter at just £2.15 which includes a drink & free salad.  If you require any information regarding meals or paying online, please contact Mrs McDougall, Catering Manager on 01242 548705.

 

Staff Goodbyes

We say goodbye to Mrs Rolfe from the Art Department.  We would like to thank her for all her hard work and wish her all the best for the future.

 

We also say goodbye to Mrs Smith who is starting her maternity leave.  We wish her all the best for the coming weeks and look forward to hearing the news of her new arrival.  Mrs Smith will return in January 2014.

 

A big thank you from Mr Gilpin

I have been so impressed with the number of students who have helped with our interview processes, touring candidates and interviewing. They have also helped with visiting parents of Year 6 students who will be joining Pittville in September. They have all proved to be superb ambassadors for the school and I have been very proud of all of them.

 

May I take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support and would like to wish everyone a happy Easter break. See you next term.

 

 

Mr Gilpin

Headteacher

 

 

Christmas December 2012 Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas Newsletter
December 2012

Dear Parents/Carers

Post 16 Evening - 1st November
Local sixth form providers were invited into school to talk about Year 11 students' options for sixth form or college. This was an invaluable session for our students.

Year 11 English Exam
There is a Year 11 English exam on the morning of Thursday 10th January 2013.

Year 10 and 11 Science Exams
These will take place on 14th, 17th, 22nd and 25th January 2013.

PTFA Disco – 2nd November
Our PTFA organised a “Getting to Know You” disco for years 7 and 8. Thank you. This was a great success.

Y11 Mock Interviews
Members of the Enterprise Business Partnership spent the morning in school giving Year 11 students the opportunity to practise their interview techniques. Each member of Year 11 had a 30 minute interview with a member of the business community and was given feedback and tips on how to improve. Well done to all the Year 11 students.

Students’ Work Published
Competition from Young Writers – Express Yourself Through Poetry.
The brief was to write a poem on any theme and in any style, no longer than 30 lines. Winning poems are published in an anthology. Students who had work published are:
Emily Monahan, Isaac Heywood, Ruby Alexander, Chris Lee, Amy Essery, Courtney Baikie, Nathan Webb, Elizabeth Johnson, Beth Pegler, Luna Carbone, Charley Cruse and Lauren Smith. Copies of the anthology can be found in the school library. Very well done!

Students meet Alex Gregory – Olympic Gold Medallist Rower
On Wednesday 10th October a group of students were invited to UCAS to watch Jill Douglas from the BBC interview Alex Gregory. Alex, who is originally from Cheltenham, was part of the “Coxless 4” gold medal winning crew at the London Olympics. The students formed part of an audience and were given the opportunity to ask any questions that they had. All the students thoroughly enjoyed the experience and felt inspired to take up new sports. We were also lucky enough to have Alex present the awards at our Achievement Evening. This gave us an opportunity to celebrate the wonderful achievements of our students over the past academic year. It was a hugely enjoyable evening showcasing our students of whom we are so proud.

Movember
During November each year, Movember is responsible for the sprouting of moustaches on thousands of men’s faces in the UK and around the world. The aim of this is to raise vital funds and awareness for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer and testicular cancer. Our male members of staff took part in this and raised just short of £300. Well done to all involved. A big thanks to Mr Gilpin’s stepdaughters for making cakes which raised £35 for the charity.

Albert Hall Performance
On Wednesday 14th November, Pittville School students took part in the ‘Music for Youth’ Schools’ Prom as part of the Gloucestershire Ensemble. A big thank you to Mrs Smith and Miss Underhill and to all the students involved.

Children in Need Mufti day
Students took part in a non-uniform day to raise money for Children In Need. Students also organised cake sales and other fund raising events. A total of £612.35 was raised for the charity.

Y11 Certificate Collection Afternoon
On Wednesday 21st November we invited last years' Year 11 students, and their parents, into school to collect their GCSE and BTEC certificates. They were able to mingle with staff and catch up with their friends over a cup of tea. It was great to see them and to find out what they are doing now.

Opening of School Kitchen
Teachers and students are delighted with our new kitchen. The school was built in 1938 and some of the kitchen had remained unchanged since then. Catering Manager Dot McDougall said "the new kitchen is brilliant, it has made a tremendous difference". The kitchen was opened by Cotswold Chef Rob Rees MBE and was supplied by Space Catering.

Jump Rope for Heart
This year, our school registered with the British Heart Foundation (BHF)’s ‘Jump Rope For Heart’ programme. This programme recognises the important role that regular physical activity plays in maintaining and improving health and aims to introduce students to the massive potential of skipping and associated health benefits through a series of structured PE lessons. Students had the opportunity to participate in the ‘Jump Off’ and to find sponsors. 20% of the money will be retained by the school. The rest of the money raised will be sent to the BHF to fund pioneering research into the causes and treatment of heart disease among men, women and children, lifesaving cardiac equipment, BHF nurses and health education.

KS4 Climate Conference Trip
On Wednesday 5th December, seven KS4 students represented China and the Maldives at the Council Chambers in a mock Climate Change Conference which mirrored the current DOHA conference. Through teamwork, negotiating, diplomacy and passion, all countries came up with a legally binding agreement (with many clauses) to reduce carbon emissions for 2020, and help combat climate change. Sadie Roach, Zoe Daniel, Kirbie Parker, Ryan Hearn, Cameron Ellwood and Tom Kent were all exemplary ambassadors for our school. Special mention must go to Gareth Morgan, who provoked, argued and fought for his representative country of the Maldives, on the urgency and future consequences to his nation and the world, if this issue was not addressed. This was a fantastic experience for all students and I would like to thank Miss Merrick and Mr Litherland for their support.

Bike It
The school is planning to become a “Bike It” school in collaboration with Sustrans, the UK’s leading sustainable transport charity. The charity works directly with schools, getting young people cycling to school every day. Watch this space!

Vivo arrives at Pittville
Introducing Vivo Miles. Vivo Miles is a reward scheme which we will be introducing during the course of next term. A Vivo will essentially be the same as a praise stamp (and they will be awarded for the same things as praise stamps). However, the big change is that Vivos will be awarded online and each student will have an online Vivo account where they can track the number of Vivos they have earned. In addition, Vivos can be saved up and spent online at the Vivo shop; students can purchase anything from a pencil right up to computer games and I-Pods (if they earn enough Vivos). Each Vivo will also count as one house point and in January every student will have their current house points converted into Vivos.

French Club
The French Club would like to congratulate Matt Stephens (10AS1) and Leonie Harrison (7AS1) for being the winners of the translation competition. They both produced a very good translation of the song and were given their prizes. Students of the French Club have been busy again this term; we have worked on a school guided tour video all in French and we have cooked quiche and have discovered French animated film.

Spanish Club
From next term we will be starting an after school Spanish Club for students. We are very excited about this new opportunity. Further details to follow.

Business Studies Share Game Success
Well done to Andy Thatcher, Dennis Harrop and Clayton Pargeter in year 10 who are currently 89th in the country out of 7521 business studies teams taking part in the national Student Investor Challenge, www.studentinvestor.org/challenge. Students have to buy and sell shares on a delayed FTSE100 share index. Their portfolio is worth over £106,949 to date. If they qualify in the top 20 regionally they will qualify for the regional finals. Good luck boys!

Year 7 Carol Concert at Highbury Church
Year 7 students visited Highbury Church for a traditional carol service on Wednesday 12th December. Thank you to Mrs Smith, Miss Underhill and Miss Mitchell for helping to organise the service. Also, a big thank you to all at Highbury Church for giving us permission to hold this service.

Christmas Concerts
Thank you to Mrs Smith, Miss Underhill and Mr Ash who worked so hard to make the Christmas Concert such a success. It was well attended and there was a lovely atmosphere.

Goodbye
We say goodbye to Simon Haywood, AFA, and wish him well for the future.

Next Term
• Options Evening - 10th January 2013
• Y11 Parents’ Evening - 17th January 2013
• Y8 Parents’ Evening - 24th January 2013
• PTFA Valentines Disco – 8th February 2013

May I take this opportunity to thank all parents and carers for their support this term. Have a lovely safe Christmas break.

School reopens on Monday 7th January 2013.

Newsletter October 2012 Friday, October 19, 2012

NEWSLETTER October 2012

Dear Parents/Carers

We have had a very successful and busy start to the Autumn Term; as we approach the October half term I would like to update you on what has been happening and to inform you of some future events.

Open Evening/Open Week
I was delighted to see so many families visiting the school during our open week. It was great to see the hall packed out on open evening (there was not a spare seat to be seen). We had some very positive feedback from visitors who were impressed with the enthusiasm of students and staff alike. I would like to thank all the students, staff and Governors who worked so hard to make open week so successful and supported us in our many visits to junior schools.

Year 7
Our Year 7 students have settled well into school life. They are integrating well into the school and the recent year 7 Tutor Evening was a huge success.

Years 10 and 11 Information Evenings
Earlier this term we put on two evenings for the parents of students in years 10 and 11 to give them more information about how they can best support students at this crucial time. The events were very well attended and Mr Davis has received some very positive feedback from parents. Thank you to all parents who attended.

Year 11 Study Support
The following Year 11 study support sessions are being held during the half term break:-

Monday 22nd October 08.30 – 13.00 Maths – Mrs Stevens and Mrs Pitt R18 & R21
09.00 – 15.00 ICT – Mrs Bannister R4
Tuesday 23rd October 08.30 – 13.00 Maths – Mrs Stevens and Mr Edwards R18 & R17
09.00 – 15.00 ICT – Mrs Bannister R4
Wednesday 24th October 08.30 – 13.00 Maths – Mr Edwards R17
Thursday 25th October 09.00 – 13.00 Maths – Miss Simeon R16
10.00 – 14.00 H & S Care – Miss James R26

Student Parliament
Wednesday 26th September saw all of the newly elected Pittville Parliament MPs meeting for the first time this academic year. Every tutor group took part in a democratic process to vote for an MP to represent their views, opinions and ideas about Pittville School.

Students meet Olympian
On Wednesday 10th October 22 students from Pittville had the chance to meet Alex Gregory at UCAS. At the 2012 Olympic Games in London, Alex raced in the men's four with Pete Reed, Tom James and Andrew Triggs-Hodge. Despite pressure from the experienced Australian crew, the oarsome foursome led their final from the start to become Olympic Champions. Students were able to meet Alex and ask him questions as well as watch him being interviewed by the BBC sports correspondent Jill Douglas. The students found the experience very inspiring.

Drayton Manor Reward Trip
This year’s reward trip took place on Friday 12th October. This trip was a reward for those students who worked so hard throughout the last academic year and as a celebration of all they have achieved. A thoroughly enjoyable day was had by all and I have heard that Mr Watkins was brave enough to go on ‘G-Force’!

Year 9 Geography Visit
Year 9 Geography students visited the Cotswold Wildlife Park as part of their work on sustainable development and rainforests. Students were given talks by park keepers and were also able to visit various areas at the park in order to develop their understanding. Everyone enjoyed meeting the meerkats!

European Languages Day
As part of our drive to develop languages at Pittville, the school took part in ‘European Languages Day’ on Wednesday 26th September. The day was organised by Miss Davis and Miss Duffas and involved all staff starting every lesson with an activity linked to world languages. The canteen got involved by cooking specific world foods that day. Please see the French page that has been put together by our after school French Club. Enter the competition and see if you can translate the song!

Ground Force comes to Pittville
On Friday 12th October volunteers from Endsleigh Insurance visited Pittville to help overhaul our market garden. The volunteers worked hard in very muddy conditions. The aim is to now to ensure that students can use the facility as part of their curriculum experience in areas such as science, DT and geography.

Check out our new website pages
We have recently updated our website to include faculty and house pages. We would be delighted to hear any feedback from parents about the website.

GCSE Photography trip to Westonbirt Arboretum
On Wednesday 17th October, 20 Year 10 students spent the day at Westonbirt Arboretum taking photographs as part of their photography course. Mr Simkiss commented that “students enjoyed the beautiful Autumnal colours and will have some fantastic photographs”.

French Play at Pates Grammar School
A number of Year 10 French students had the opportunity to watch a French play at Pates Grammar School on the 9th October. This was an opportunity to improve their vocabulary and confidence in speaking French.

Russian Club
In another exciting development, Miss Davis has set up a Russian club. Pearse McGuigan, who attended the first session said, “I’m enjoying Russian Club and I’ve always found Russian interesting. I think it is important to learn different languages”.

New Facilities
We were delighted to be able to spend money over the summer completing some much needed refurbishment to the school kitchen. Students and staff are benefiting from the excellent new facilities. Dot McDougall, catering manager said “It has made such a difference and is so efficient”.

We are also pleased that we have had 6 new entrance doors fitted to the main school building.

PE
• Girls’ PE Overview
Pittville girls got off to a flying start this term playing football, hockey and netball fixtures. They are currently top of the Gloucestershire Under 13 League and have won 4 of their 7 netball fixtures. We have also had a number of students selected to play at County level in their chosen sport namely Brittany Sutton-Page, Annabel Davies and Josie Robinson.
• Boys’ PE Overview
Year 7 and year 8 boys have had excellent warm-up rugby games against All Saints prior to their up and coming tournaments. The year 9 team had a very convincing win against All Saints with Jason Welby scoring 6 tries. Year 10 also had a good result against All Saints with Ryan Hearn scoring a hat-trick of tries! Year 11 are looking forward to some friendly football fixtures against Winchcombe and All Saints prior to the district cup competition.

Attendance
A reminder that the Government target for each student is 95% attendance. It is essential that students attend school regularly as this has a direct impact on their achievement at school.

Year 11 Sixth Form Visit
Last week a group of year 11 students had the opportunity to visit Balcarras School and get a feel for their sixth form. The morning began with a tour given by sixth formers currently at the school. This gave our students not only an insight into the lessons at Balcarras but also gave them a chance to have an informal conversation and voice any queries they may have. Beth Pegler commented “The calm and friendly atmosphere of the school made the trip an enjoyable and eye opening experience”.

Highlights for Next Term
• Year 11 post 16 Evening
On Thursday 1st November we will be holding a post-16 information evening which will give students and parents the opportunity to find out more about the opportunities for students after year 11. The event will take place in the main hall from 6.30pm.
• Achievement Evening 28th November 2012
This year we will be holding an Achievement Evening to celebrate the fantastic academic progress students at Pittville are making. More information will be available after half term. There will also be a guest speaker who will be presenting the awards to students.
• Inset Days
A reminder that on Friday 30th November and Monday 3rd December the school will be closed to pupils for staff training.
• Christmas Concert
The annual Christmas Concert will take place on Friday 14th December. Tickets will go on sale after half term.

Have a lovely half term break.
Mr Gilpin



Newsletter July 2012 Saturday, July 21, 2012

Dear Parents/Carers

As we approach the end of another successful year at Pittville I thought I would take the opportunity to thank you for all your support this year and to wish you a wonderful summer break (let’s hope the weather is kind to us all!). I would like to update you on all the exciting events that have taken place over the last term. We have many reasons to be ‘Proud of Pittville’.

Wizard of Oz

Students were ‘Following the Yellow Brick Road’ to stardom last week when they had an amazingly successful run of performances for the ‘Wizard of Oz’. Emma McGuigan shone in the lead role of Dorothy who went head to head with the equally impressive Ruby Alexander, as the Wicked Witch, scaring the 150 pupils from local primary schools who came to see a preview (and a few adults at the actual shows!). Gareth Morgan excelled as Scarecrow, James McAdam was brilliant as Tinman and Tilah Haken was a roaring success as the Cowardly Lion. And not forgetting the upcoming new star of the show, Sooki the Pug, who made a fantastic Toto and stole the hearts of all of the audience who came to support the cast and the show. 50 talented pupils also took part in the production both on and off stage and it was agreed by all to be the best performance Pittville has put on to date. A massive well done to everyone who helped and took part, the hard work was well worth it all.

Kenyan Visitors

We were delighted to be able to welcome two teachers and two students from Kenya. Our partner school, Balcarras, is linked with a school called St Aloy Gem and is based in Katito. The nearest town is Kisumu which is located on the edge of Lake Victoria. The staff and students spent time touring our school, meeting staff and observing lessons.

International Links

On the 4th July 2012 we hosted a number of teachers from across Europe. They visited Pittville as part of the International Study Exchange. They spent the day speaking to staff and watching lessons.

Year 7 Athletes

Congratulations to the following year 7 girls who took part in the athletics trials at the Prince of Wales recently. Courtney Burrows, Brittany Sutton-Page, Josie Robinson, Ellie Carruthers, Alicia Smith, Laiani Haken and Ollia Zacharov. Brittany won the 100m and shot-put. Ollia won 800m and Brittany, Ellie, Alicia and Ollia came 3rd in the 4 x 100m relay. Well done to all of you!

PE Department News

PE fixtures have taken place all throughout the year, with a mixture of triumphs and defeats but the spirits of the students always stay high. Pittville pupils have represented us in Netball, Hockey, Cricket, Football, Rounders and Rugby, with the Y7 girls’ team securing a place in the District Rugby final. The PE department are keen to lay on a large variety of clubs again next year, enabling pupils to have an interesting choice and to encourage all abilities. Clubs are open to all year groups and take place on most days after school.

VIVO

We are currently exploring an innovative new way of rewarding students at Pittville. Vivo is an internet based points reward system which would see students able to earn reward points and then exchange the points for prizes. We have spoken to some of students who were very positive about the idea. Watch this space.

GCSE Photography Trip to London 2012

On 28th June 17 students embarked on a two day residential trip to London. After arriving at the YHA on the Thames we set off for London Bridge station and the new Shard Tower – an impressive sight towering above us in the sunlight. We then walked through Borough Market and along the Southbank to the Tate Modern. We stopped regularly to take pictures and admire the views. Entertainment for the evening was bowling and we were all very impressed with Amy Essery who seemed to be an expert! Day two and we headed back into central London, this time to Waterloo, with more of the Southbank to explore, lunch, coffee and burritos. We walked across the Thames to Covent Garden. We then had to head back to Cheltenham. Great trip! All the students behaved impeccably and only stayed up until midnight! Exhibition of photographic work from London will be displayed in September. Watch this space!

Year 8 Geography Trip

15 pupils from year 8 geography were selected to participate in a joint micro climate enquiry with Balcarras School. The day was a great success and enjoyed by all students and members of staff. It stretched the pupils’ understanding of climates, and challenged their enquiry skills. They worked superbly in their mixed groups and ended up producing some fantastic presentations. This will be the first of many joint field studies we plan to do with Balcarras School geography department.

Year 11 Prom

This was held at Cheltenham racecourse on Friday 29 June. It was well attended by students and staff and everyone had a great time. The staff at the racecourse were full of praise for the way our students conducted themselves. They were a real credit to the school. My thanks go to Mrs Cooper for all the effort she put in to organising what is always a terrific event.

Year 10 Work Experience

Year 10 students have just returned from their work experience visits. The feedback from their placements has been very positive. Well done to all the students.

Year 11 Appointments

Congratulations to Tom Stevens, Head Boy, Kirbie Parker, Head Girl, Emma McGuigan, Deputy, and Issac Heywood, Deputy. We have a very talented team to lead student leadership in the school. Well done to each of them and to all the students who applied for the posts. Quite an achievement.

Ducks

Many students have been keenly following the fortunes of the Pittville ducks. I am pleased to announce that all eleven ducklings have survived and have recently been relocated to a nearby lake. I am told they are all doing very well!

Linguascope

The MFL department is happy to announce that Pittville School now has access to Linguascope online; an excellent tool to improve independent learning amongst our students, and something that we think all years can enjoy. All students can access a multitude of exercises and games to practise their French by going to the Linguascope website and logging on with our personal username (pittville) and password (bonjour123). We hope that many of you will have fun using this over the summer. Also, watch this space for next year’s after school language clubs!

House News

Aston House

On Sunday 1st July, members of Aston House gave up their Sunday to volunteer for the Race for Life at Cheltenham racecourse for the 5K and 10K run. Jade Roberts Y10, Jess Thomas Y10, Heather Savage Y9 and Brooklyn Cole Y7 supported runners by handing out medals, goody bags and much needed bottles of water at the finish line. The girls were a fantastic support to each entrant, offering them encouragement and congratulations with a never-ending supply of enthusiasm. They were a credit to Aston House and Pittville School, in remembrance of our namesake Lyn Aston and the on-going charity work we endeavour to achieve. Plenty of students from Pittville School were also involved in the event by running either the 5k or 10k race contributing to the overall total of £232,000. All sponsorship money goes towards the incredible work of Cancer Research UK doctors, scientists and nurses into all 200 types of cancer.

Abbott House

It has been an excellent term for students in Abbott House. We achieved sporting success with victories for the Year 7 boys’ cricket team and a dramatic last ball victory for the Year 9 girls’ rounders team. We still lead the inter-house competition with an average 114 points. We have appointed out new House Captains: Carinna Carroll (10Ab1) and Paul Posholi (10Ab2). Carinna and Paul take over from Charlie Roberts and Reece Philpot and will be working hard to ensure that we stay ahead in the house competition and then carry that success over into next year. Joining them will also be our new Sport’s Captain, Shannon Power (9Ab1). Shannon did an excellent job of leading the Year 9 girls’ rounders team to victory over Aston House in their final and she will be making sure that all students in Abbott House do their best on sports day.

Livingstone House

I am proud to report that the children and staff in Livingstone House continue to embrace the house system. This is demonstrated through assemblies, the ‘feel’, working together, ‘our houses’ celebrating ‘our successes’, staff have spoken of tutees to be proud of and the comments have also been displayed on our Livingstone House Board. We recently interviewed candidates for the vacant House Captain roles. The successful two were Kirbie Parker 10Li2 and Tom Stevens 10Li1. The head boy/head girl interviews followed where both were successful again, along with Isaac Heywood 10Li1 as deputy head boy. New House Captains to be announced in our end of year celebration assembly.

Charity Balloon Release

On Monday 16th July Pittville had a charity balloon release in memory of Megan White. Bethany Kent, Libbie Berrey and Jade Clifford, with the helpful support of a large number of students and staff, had collected money for the Cheltenham Animal Shelter (a charity chosen by Megan’s family). Everyone that had contributed to the balloon release came together on the front field to launch their balloons, each with a personal message attached to any loved ones that have been lost. We were very proud to see such great support from our students and staff.

History Department

Year 7s have been studying the development of castles and as part of this project they were given a homework assignment to build a model castle. The series of lessons included; why William I needed castles, The motte and bailey castle, square keep castle, the development of castles and attacking and defending castles. The students’ homework task was to design and build a model castle that included some of the features they have studied in lessons. In addition to standard models some students designed and made a model cake castle that was attacked and eaten at the end of the lesson. Charlotte Lonterman and Catherine Serrell of 7AS1 made a lovely sponge and Swiss roll castle cake that included a gate house, towers and a jelly moat. Hopefully the other year 7s castles will also include a cake or two!

Dean Close International Day

On Thursday 5th July, seventy students with English as an Additional Language (EAL) from schools across Gloucestershire, including sixteen students from Pittville School were invited by their teachers from the Race, Equality and Diversity Service (READS) to attend an International Day at Dean Close School in Cheltenham. Pupils from Year 7, 8, 9 and 10 from a variety of different backgrounds and ethnicities including Chinese, Romanian, Russian, Afghan, Nigerian, Czech, Polish, Italian, French, Portuguese and Bulgarian; took part in a range of different activities throughout the day. The activities provided included; football, basketball, African dancing, swimming, cricket, badge making, outdoor games and art and crafts. Year 9 pupils from Dean Close School undertook the role of hosts and looked after the pupils, joining them in the day’s events. This enrichment day was a fantastic opportunity for pupils to enjoy new experiences, meet other EAL students and make new friends. It was a great success with all the pupils asking to return again next year!

Geography Fieldtrip to Dorset

Between Friday 13 July and Monday 16th July, thirty-six Year 10 students and 4 members of staff travelled down to Dorset. The fieldtrip was a great success, with the weather being kind to us and the students thoroughly enjoying the activities and field studies. Some of the highlights were the students getting wet in the River Wey to record data and walking from Lulworth Cove to Durdle Door to identify coastal features along the coastline. The students also enjoyed abseiling, indoor climbing, archery and aeroball. In the evening the students were creative with their field data to make motion picture animations about the formation of a stack. We are looking forward to taking next year's Key Stage 4 student's back to Dorset.

Staff Farewells and Appointments

We have a number of staff leaving at the end of this term: Mrs Marshall is retiring from the English department. Mrs Hibberd and Mrs Barnett will also be leaving from the same department. In September Mrs Green, Mr Selman and Miss Dring will be joining us to teach English. In Technology Mrs Haynes and Miss Richards are both leaving. Miss Rolfe and Mr Simkiss will be joining the school in the Technology Department. We also bid farewell to Miss Johnson in Dance and Mr Chilman in Art. Miss Oakes and Miss Flanders are taking maternity leave and will be replaced by Miss Chrishop in Drama and Miss Painter in Maths. We wish Miss Oakes and Miss Flanders our very best wishes. In science Dr Cannadine is moving to a school in Birmingham and will be replaced by Mr Wade. Mr Maunder is also leaving the science department and will be replaced by Miss Vedmore. Miss Iannone will be joining the Humanities Department. Mrs Baker is leaving to take up a new post and we welcome Miss Underhill to the music department. We also said goodbye to Mr Newbound earlier in the year, Mrs Buckingham will be taking over his duties in the short term. After 22 years Mr Pitt has also moved on. Mr Watkins will be taking on the role of Head of Aston House. We are also very sad to lose Christine Buxton from the Learning Support Department. I would like to thank all the staff who are leaving for everything they have done for the students at Pittville and wish them all the best in their new ventures.

We return to school after the summer on 4th September for years 7 and 11 and the 5th September for years 8, 9 and 10. Please note that winter uniform should be worn from September – no polo shirts.

I wish you all a great summer.

R Gilpin
Headteacher

Pittville Parliament meet Martin Horwood MP Wednesday, January 22, 2014

On Friday 17th January 2014 all the MP's in Pittville Parliament were lucky enough to meet their own MP Martin Horwood. Mr Horwood came in to tell the Pittville MP's all about his role as an MP and what it entails. He then offered to answer any questions that the students may have. Miss Addison and Miss Davis were incredibly impressed with the fantastic questions that the Pittville MP's asked and Mr Horwood commented on how impressed he was with the students he met. Pittville Parliament would like to thank Mr Horwood for coming in to visit them!

 

 

Parliament Meeting - 5th December Monday, December 09, 2013
This term the Parliament has been working on the theme 'changes to our school'. The MP's worked in year group teams to develop presentations on the five most popular changes that Pittville students would like to see made. Governors and SLT were invited to the meeting and the Parliament presented to SLT on Thursday 5th December, with a hope that they will see some of their proposals considered.

Mr Gilpin, Mrs Phillips and Mr Lintern-Mole all attended the meeting and listened carefully to students presentations as well as asking lots of questions. They were given a copy of the presentations that students put together. SLT will now considered the proposals that the students have put forward and MP's were also asked to conduct some further research into some ideas.

Miss Addison and Miss Davis would like to thank all of the MP's for all of their hard work and their excellent presentations.

Pittville Parliament November Update Monday, November 11, 2013
Pittville MP's met on 7th November 2013 to begin conducting research into the different 'changes to our school' that their fellow tutees had voted for. Students are working in year group teams and will produce a power point presentation as well as a document with relevant research in. These will be presented to Senior Leadership Team at the beginning of December. Miss Davis and Miss Addison were delighted with the start that the MP's made to their research presentations and are really looking forward to the outcomes.
Pittville Parliament Meeting - 18th October 2013 Friday, October 25, 2013
During the latest parliament meeting Pittville MP’s brought with them the opinions and ideas of their fellow students on changes they would like to see in our school. MP’s had held their own sessions with their tutor groups, prior to the parliament meeting asking for feedback and ideas. MP’s discussed the broad range of ideas and then worked together to narrow these down and to a select few based on popularity. Over the coming weeks the MP’s will be working in year group teams to devise presentations based on one of the ‘changes’ that Pittville students would like to see. Miss Addison and Miss Davis are really looking forward to working with the students on their presentations and seeing what they come up with!
Pittville Parliament Visit to Houses of Parliament Thursday, October 03, 2013
On Wednesday 2nd October 2013, members of Pittville Parliament travelled down to London to take part in a trip to the Houses of Parliament. Students worked hard last year to raise the money required to fund the trip, through cake sales, running a stall at the summer fair and the very successful Art Auction.

Students left Pittville first thing in the morning to travel down to Parliament Square in London. Once Miss Addison had gone through security, much to the amusement of the students, we entered the Parliament buildings and were given our official visitor badges. We began the day with a fantastic tour of Parliament which included going into both the Houses of Commons and the Houses of Lords. We were told that under no circumstances were we allowed to sit down on the benches! The students asked lots of fantastic questions and really got a sense of what day to day life in Parliament is really like.

The students then took part in a workshop on elections and voting. The workshop was very hands on and the Pittville MP's learnt about different voting systems as well as taking part in their very own vote. Miss Addison was very proud of the superb questions that the students asked and impressed by their knowledge of politics.
First Parliament Meeting - September 2013 Friday, September 27, 2013
Pittville Parliament's first meeting of the year.

Thursday 26th September saw the first meeting this term of Pittville Parliament. All of the newly or re-elected MP's attended and were welcomed to the new year by Miss Addison and Miss Davis. MP's were told about the changes in structure to Pittville Parliament. Students will be looking at a range of whole school issues across the coming months.

Mr Poole attended the first parliament meeting to discuss the school's lunchtime arrangements with students. The MP's were very vocal and had some very constructive discussions, generating a range of good ideas. MP's will be returning to their tutor groups to seek the opinions of their fellow tutees before returning to Parliament on the 3rd October.
Art Auction June 2013 Thursday, July 04, 2013

On Thursday 27th June, Pittville Parliament held an Art auction to raise money to help the students travel to London in October to visit the Houses of Parliament. There was artwork from Miss Addison, Mr Beer, Miss Storey, Miss Duffas and Mr Simkiss, and a secret bidding process took place to decide who would walk away with the artwork. There was a fantastic turn out of staff and students to the event  and an incredible £189 was raised all together. Miss Addison and the Parliament MP’s were truly overwhelmed by the amount they managed to raise and would like to say a big thank you to everyone that came along and supported the event!

 

Pittville Parliament Meeting - Wednesday 15th May 2013 Wednesday, May 15, 2013

At today's Parliament Meeting the School Parliament were discussing fundraising opportunities and will be working with Miss Storey, Miss Addison and Mr Downing over the coming months in order to fund their transport down to the Houses of Parliament next October. So look out for a range of events throughout June and July!

Student Parliament meet Martin Horwood Thursday, February 07, 2013

On 1st February we held another meeting of the Pittville Parliament.  Earlier this year, every tutor group took part in a democratic process to vote for an MP to represent their views, opinions and ideas about Pittville School.  MP's wear badges to represent the important role that they play in giving all of the students of Pittville a 'voice'.

The meeting was particularly special as Pittville's MP's were visited by their own MP for Cheltenham, Martin Horwood.  Mr Horwood was invited into school to tell students about what his job as an MP entails.  Students had worked together in their last parliament meeting to think about some interesting and challenging questions to pose to Mr Horwood and students had the opportunity to learn about the breadth of different responsibilities that comes with being an MP.  Mr Horwood was very interested in how the roles and duties of a Pittville MP compared to those of his own.

The visit from Mr Horwood represents a fantastic opportunity for our students to gain an insight into government and current day politics as well as understanding the many varied responsibilities that MP's have.  the students learnt an incredible amount from Mr Horwood and we were very impressed with their thoughtful and inquisitive questions.  Pittville Parliament is very grateful to Mr Horwood for giving up his time to come and visit us.

Penny Addison - Pittville Parliament