Since I last posted we have led our annual Open Evening and if I was expecting something special, I was not disappointed.
It may have been incredibly busy with over 600 people through our days but, oh my word, what a buzz. The thing that struck me the most was just how proud of our academy the young people are. The number of students who volunteered to give a speech to the assembled throngs, guide groups of visitors and host classroom activities was impressive. The number of positive comments about our children was quite literally "through the roof". Well done all!
Some schools may be able to put on a good show for an Open Evening but the school that I toured that night is exactly the same as the one I work in every day. Since I last wrote I seem to have spent a good deal of time in results analysis meetings, planning the new build, scrutinising academy development plans and reviews with governors and OAT advisors but I have still got out and about in lessons. Last week I was challenged on the importance of "student voice" during an impromptu visit to Mrs Ferreira’s English classroom. Prior to that I had been invited to a most interesting Yr12 Science lesson which involved making balloon models in order to explain molecular structure, this, after struggling to answer even one question correctly in a Year 7 Physics lesson.
As I always say though our school isn’t just about the classroom and a quick perusal through the academy Twitter and Facebook pages highlights the incredible number of opportunities for learning outside the classroom. There has been sensational successes for our girls’ netball teams, a Year 11 visit to see War Horse, record Friday Fun numbers, Democracy ambassadors working with the council and a Macmillan coffee morning which raised over £500!!
Last week we held one of our PSHE days, which are absolutely essential in supporting our young people to be responsible and active citizens aware of at risk behaviour. These days are structured and extremely worthwhile. I was particularly impressed by the engagement of our year 9 students with external visitors who came to talk with small groups about careers, university and apprenticeships. With over half of the top London jobs currently occupied by graduates of a private school which accounts for less than 7% of the student population we clearly haven’t got social mobility right in this country. Let us hope that we can do something about this at GSA! Thank you to Mrs Mohammed our careers advisor who arranged this session. Also a huge thank you to Mrs Hill who organised for two Olympic athletes to come in to school and talk about resilience, character and success. What a coup it was to have Ekaterina Avramova (swimmer) and Kathryn Thomson (speed skater) hopefully raising the aspirations of our very talented students.
As always, I appreciate your support. Rest assured, we will continue to do our very best for a tremendous group of young people. If you are interested, I do host termly parent voice forums, which are your opportunity to come and ask questions informally about our school. Please lookout for dates on the academy website.
"Onwards and upwards."
Read previous Blog posts @ The Blog Archive: 2018