Farewell to Colleagues

We are saying farewell to a number of our colleagues this summer, some of our long-standing staff are retiring: Mrs McKinnon, Teacher of Technology, Mrs Renteria, Teacher of Spanish and French, Dr Bradley, Teacher of Science, Mrs Walker, Subject Leader for Textiles and Mr Walker, Teacher of PE and Head of Year 9.  They leave us with our best wishes for their retirement.

We will also be saying farewell to Mr Wells, Curriculum Leader for Business, Miss Leach, Curriculum Leader for Maths, Miss Sussex, Subject Leader for Dance, Miss Tregoning, Teacher of Drama and House Coordinator, Mr Linton, Teacher of Geography and Head of Year 12 plus Mr Clarke, Teacher of Computing, Miss Russell, Teacher of Social Sciences, Miss Bowie, Teacher of Art, Mr Boyce, Teacher of Physics, and Miss Quinnell, Teacher of PE.   Associate Staff Members moving on are Mrs Fettes, Sixth Form Student Support Officer and Duke of Edinburgh Coordinator and Ms Stacey, Development Team.  Also leaving but returning to us as Exam Invigilators are Mrs Baldwin, Senior Teaching Assistant, and Mrs Evans, Senior Teaching Assistant for Exams.  We thank them all for their support and commitment to the school and would like to wish them well for their future.

May we also take this opportunity of wishing you all a very enjoyable summer and we look forward to welcoming our new students to Year 7 and all of our other students back in September.

Press Release - New Leisure Centre

We are delighted to announce that after many years of campaigning the school has just signed a formal agreement with the Local Authority to build a brand new leisure centre on our site.  This is fantastic news for all of us.  Please click here to see the press release.

House News

As the term has come to a close, we would like to thank all of our wonderful staff and students for the hard work they have put in to raise money for the four House Charities and Shade Sail Fund. In particular, we would like to thank the staff ‘Heads of House’ and the Sixth Form ‘House Captains’ who have worked tirelessly to promote and organise events and competitions throughout the year. The totals have been counted, and the final amounts raised are below:

Churchill

The Jane Metson Foundation

£3019.56

Nightingale

Daisy’s Dream

£2941.40

Pankhurst

SVP

£2537.32

Armstrong

Sebastian’s Action Trust

£3438.40

Combined

Shade Sail Fund

£2984.15

 

                                                                           Grand Total - £14,920.83

What an amazing achievement!  The House Points for the final events of the term have been added to the overall scores and we are pleased to announce the final result for the year:

4th place with 7758 – Pankhurst

3rd Place with 7790 – Churchill

2nd Place with 7905 – Armstrong

1st place with 8191 – Nightingale.

Many Congratulations to Nightingale House – Well done and thank you to everyone! 

Year 8 Potential High Achiever Project

Potential High Achievers from Year 8 produced a number of excellent presentations last week outlining their solutions to a problem in the world that they had identified.  All groups delivered a detailed presentation to us and other members of a judging panel including, Ms Ellie Wallace (Chair of Trustees), Mrs Hill, Director of Stem and Mr Ginn, Teacher of Mathematics.   Pictured are the winners Ella Corless and Sacha Grover who won the trophy donated by Carr Williams Estate Agents for their project about animal welfare and extinction.  Thanks also to Miss Godbold who organised the project.

Cambridge Chemistry Challenge Success

Last month forty five Charters Chemists took part in the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge, a competition which aims to stretch and challenge students interested in chemistry. The competition is designed to be accessible to Year 12 students, taking them significantly beyond the syllabus and encouraging them to think about science in the way they would at university.  This year students took home a fantastic thirteen awards.  Copper Award: Esta Shrewsbury (in the photograph  below), Louise Johnson, Nitish Herkanaidu, Tamsin Vigar, Ben Yates, Amelia Quirk, Emily Hembrow, Shah Moore, Hannah West, Jack Howell, Tomek Seier and Jack Cullen; Silver:  Edward Rivers (in the photograph below).

This is a fantastic achievement by all who attempted this very difficult paper.  Special mentions must go to Esta Shrewsbury who missed out on a Silver certificate by a whisker and Louise Johnson from Year 11 who was awarded a Copper certificate for the second year running.  Edward Rivers, achieved a Silver award, placing him in the top 10% nationally.  This accomplishment, extraordinary in its own right, is even more impressive when taking into account that Edward is only in Year 10.  Congratulations to all students who took part.

British Airways Flag Award for Languages: Spanish and French

Congratulations to thirty seven of our Year 9 students who have passed their British Airways Flag Award for Languages in Spanish and French in the last year that British Airways will be running this examination.  Certificates and badges will be awarded early next term in Year 10 Assembly. Thank you to Miss Chubb and Mrs Mathews for their thorough preparation for the students for this unique qualification.

Year 10 Fish Masterclass!

Our Year 10 Food Preparation and Nutrition students had a skills masterclass on how to prepare a fresh sea bream.  They were shown how to remove the fins, scales, guts and filleting of the fish by one of the staff from Waitrose fish department in Sunningdale.  The students had the opportunity to try out the skills for themselves, which they approached with real enthusiasm.  The newly acquired abilities will be extremely useful for the students’ Year 11 practical assessment next year when they will be required to show a variety of high level skills.

Southhall Trip

Year 12 student Claudine Oviatt accompanied the Year 10 RS students to Southall last week as part of her Work Experience in the RS Department and has written a report about trip:

Year 10 enjoyed their trip to Southhall, visiting St Joseph's Church and the gurdwara, and were delighted to be invited for the first time to the mosque in Maidenhead.  They learned about community cohesion of religious groups in society, the comparisons between the theology and core beliefs of both Abrahamic faiths (Islam and Christianity) and Sikhism.  All places of worship were incredibly accommodating, welcoming and happy to answer any questions that our students had.  It was very interesting for them to see the contrast of having a mosque in a wealthy area and a church in a poorer one and how both faced financial struggles in the building of their place of worship.  They found out that the people in the community took it upon themselves to raise money to build the places of worship - for example, the church used 'sponsored bricks' from the locals to build the foundations of the church.  This fact led into many discussions about politics and religion being not so far apart.  

The students were amazed by the beautiful scenery in these places of worship, especially the chandeliers in the mosque and gurdwara (with an £18,000 chandelier donated to the mosque) as well as wonderful wall displays in the church. Year 10 particularly enjoyed the meal at the langer (community kitchen) in the gurdwara, with many students being intrigued by the Sikh traditional clothes and the speaker was happy to explain what it meant for them.  Overall the students seemed to find the experience helpful for their course and for them as individuals to be more aware of the diversity in society - as all faiths were adamant that tolerance and freedom of religious beliefs should be maintained in society.

  

Biology Trip to Devon

Last week all twenty nine of our Year 12 Biologists ventured down to Devon for five days to study Ecology as part of their A-level course.  Students had a guided walking tour of Paignton Zoo to learn more about the animals and the Zoo’s conservation projects, as well as finding out how the zoo keepers use operant conditioning on some of their animals to improve wellbeing through behaviour management.  Prizes went to Esta Shrewsbury and Sofia Velazquez-Pimentel for their surprising in-depth knowledge of animal biology and enthusiasm for asking pertinent questions respectively.  Esta with Nitish Herkanaidu (in the photograph below) investigated the story of evolution in the Darwin Room of Paignton Zoo. 

The Field Studies Centre in Slapton is a site of unique ecological importance due to the presence of the freshwater ley so close to the saltwater sea and students spent their days using a range of Ecology sampling techniques to study the local flora and fauna and subsequently applied statistical analysis to their collected data to examine how habitat changes can affect populations.

The Ecology tutor who led sessions and provided students with expert knowledge of the local wildlife commented on how impressed he was with all our students and their ability to follow instructions and carry out practical work with efficiency and enthusiasm, even when the heavens opened for the whole day they spent on the rocky shore studying limpets in different zones!  The practical assessments undertaken will count towards the practical endorsement of the OCR Biology course.  We would like to thank Miss Lawson (Subject Leader Biology) and Dr Herbert who accompanied the students and helped to make this trip a success.

BP Young Scientist Challenge and Donation


BP and Simms Recycling Solutions have made a charitable donation to the school of twenty Laptops.  There is a whole team of people at BP and Simms who need to take credit for making this happen and Dr Bradley received the first of the laptops from Ray Anderson when she visited BP last week for the Young Scientist Challenge.  Mr Anderson is our BP link and a parent of the school, who has worked tirelessly on our behalf to secure this generous donation.  He also gives up his time to support Science club and the Girls' Robotics team for which we are most grateful. 

Dr Bradley accompanied Year 9 students to BP last week for the Young Scientist Challenge.   During this challenge our students were tasked with building an oil rig on a budget and earned money back depending on its height, area and strength. Our two teams pictured below had a marvellous day at BP.

Gold Duke of Edinburgh Assessed Expedition in Snowdonia

The students completing the Gold Duke of Edinburgh Assessed Expedition in Snowdonia this week were in good spirits despite navigation challenges and carrying their homes on their backs for four days.  One night they were treated to a personal air show by two Apache helicopters who did night manoeuvres landing 200 metres away from their tents!    

Participating students were Ben Ambridge, Mark Parrott, Luke Coleman, Simran Stevens and Delfina Casabal  (pictured above) and Harris Khan, Alistair Sherman, Agustina Casabal, Lucy Frank, and Rosie Metcafe (pictured below).  

Thank you to Miss Channon and Mrs Treharne who accompanied them.

Reading Habits

Our English department are conducting a survey into the reading habits of our staff, students and parents.  They are interested in your opinions as a way of finding out how they can support our school community in their reading and promote this area further.  Please complete the short survey by clicking here which should only take a few moments.  Many thanks for your time.

Year 10 and 11 Reading List 

The reading list for Years 10 and 11 can now be found on the school website by clicking here.  Enjoy your summer reading!

School Shop – Summer Hours

School uniform will be available from the School Shop over the summer holidays at selected times.  Please click here for all information about the School Shop summer opening hours and to order uniform from the online shop.

Community News

Thames Valley Police

Thames Valley Police would like to invite students and their families to their Open Day on Saturday 5 August.  Hosted at the Police Training Centre in Sulhamstead (near Reading), the event promises to be even bigger and better than before.   Please click here to read about this event.

Forthcoming Events 

Monday 4 September
INSET day – students not in school

Tuesday 5 September
Term starts at 8.30 am for Year 7 and Year 11 Prefect Mentors in support of Year 7
Year 12 students by appointment
Year 13 students not in school

Wednesday 6 September
Term starts for Years 8, 9, 10 and 11 at 8.30 am
Year 7 students in school
Year 13 students in school at 8.50 am for Period 1 with tutors.  Lessons start Period 2
Year 12 students not in school

Thursday 7 September
Year 12 students in school at 8.30 am

Monday 18 December 2017
Annual Presentation Evening (for 2016-17 Year 13 students/parents)
Reception/ Student Registration will commence at 7 pm in the Main Hall 
Presentations will start at 7.45 pm

Martyn Parker and Richard Pilgrim
Co-Headteachers