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Principal's Blog 8th March 2019

As Spring is fast approaching and the weather improves, the site is looking lovely as we see all the plants begin to flower. We are very lucky to have such great grounds with so much open space which allows our students to have lots of areas outside for social time.

It has been another busy week with so much accomplished. We have had the pleasure of working with some of our feeder primary schools this week.  The relationship between Lipson and our Primary schools is a very special one and gives us the opportunity to work with our future students and build key relationships with staff and students.

It was lovely to welcome 90 Year 5 High View primary students to Science on Monday.  In the capable hands of Mr Watson the visit certainly went off with a bang!  With experiments a plenty, the students were fully engaged in the activities and went back to High View very excited.  Mr Watson will be welcoming Prince Rock primary on Wednesday as part of British Science week.  60 Year 5 students will be designing, building and testing amphibious vehicles.  We look forward to another exciting visit.

Staying with the Primary theme, we hosted the Lipson Family Handball Festival this Friday.  75 Year 4 students from Salisbury Road attended the festival on the astro which was organised by our Year 13 BTEC Sport students.  The 6th formers planned the whole event as part of their BTEC course, coached the younger children at each activity, monitored the tournament and awarded prizes at the end.  I really enjoyed watching this event take place and seeing our students so involved.  The enthusiasm from the Year 4 students was so infectious; I almost wanted to join in myself.  It was also great to see our Media students out on the astro filming all the action.  What a great event for all. The students were fantastic ambassadors for the school and carried out the tournament in a very professional manner.

Tutor time was buzzing on Thursday with groups taking part in ‘Share a Story’ for World Book Day.  Did you know that when young people are read to they are more likely to read to themselves? Before 9am the LRC had already given out multiple World Book Day books in exchange for the tokens handed out earlier in the week. We now await the announcement of the winners of the World Book Day Wish List writing competition.  On Tuesday we have author, Jon Mayhew visiting to spend time with all of Year 7 and some Year 5 & 6 students in the Muse with some lucky students in Years 7 & 8 attending a creative writing workshops in the LRC later in the day.   Reading brings knowledge and knowledge is Power.

A focus on future options and careers this week. Starting with our Year 8 Options Evening to provide Year 8 and their parents with key information and advice on course offer at KS4.  Attendance was high with students and parents eagerly looking at the informative stands detailing subjects on offer to study at KS4.  Looking towards their future careers and aspirations, students were encouraged to talk to subject teachers to ensure they selected subjects which were the right choice for them.  This year saw a wider selection of subjects to truly provide a really holistic education. 

The school has marked National Careers Week with a series of information stands during lunch times this week. We welcomed Building Plymouth, Focus Training (including a former student, Max McGowan who is now Sales and Recruitment Advisor), Babcock and Next Steps representing all the university institutions in the south west.  Our CSW Advisor, Mike Shail, was also on hand to make 1-1 careers meetings with students interested in exploring the next stage in their education and career development.  Finally we rounded off the week with City College delivering a presentation on apprenticeships to students in Years 12 and 13 in assembly. 

Thank you to Mrs Marshall for arranging such a great event, showcasing the array of progression routes and opportunities available to our students. 

On the sporting front, the Year 8 end of season Netball tournament at the Plymouth Life Centre took place on Wednesday.  8 schools took part in the event which closed the end of the 2018 netball season. Overall we came 6th.  Mrs Law said that she couldn’t be any prouder of her team. They are a group of girls who are reliable, fun and are determined to always do their best. Well done to them on what has been a successful season.

Plans are well under way for our next CAMPS international expedition to Kenya. The students have been working alongside Miss Lewis Ward and have fund raised £4000 to support key developments in the country they are visiting. This year, they have chosen Kenya and will be departing off on that trip in July for 4 weeks. What a great experience.  I was delighted to receive a letter from Camps International today with a £500 school reward for this being our third expedition with them.  The money can be used towards kits, travel to the airport and expedition treats or any other essentials the team need to get ready to explore Kenya.

We are very proud to work with CAMPS International as they are an organisation who fit with our own values.  During the last 17 years CAMPS international have worked with more than 30,000 volunteers in nine countries who through their hard work and dedication have helped to construct medical centres, removes tonnes of marine refuse, construct community centres, build toilets and homes and plant more than one million trees (to name but a few).  This really is a once in a lifetime experience for the young people that have signed up to go to Kenya, something that will be hard work but incredibly hard working. 

Have a restful weekend.


Mrs Lynda Budd