Langley Park School for Girls October Autumn half term 2019

A Message from the Headteacher

Dear Parents/Carers: Please find below our Newsletter that brings together some news and the many events that have been the features of this first half term of the academic year.

News Just In! The DfE performance tables were published this week, placing LPGS second in Bromley in terms of Progress 8 – the measure that shows how much progress students make on average from Year 7 to Year 11 in eight subjects across ten qualifications. It also places us 117th out of 6489 schools – not bad!


The Sixth Form performance tables have not yet been updated but we anticipate with an ALPS score of 2 (Scale 1-9, 1 being the highest) that we will be similarly placed.

News of the LPGS Sixth Form is clearly spreading. Our Sixth Form Open Evening was the busiest ever and many of the questions from prospective students and their families were about what they would do if they couldn’t get in.

LPGS Site: The students returned to our building after the summer break and saw the fruits of our Site Team’s hard work over the summer break. Key improvements include:

• An extended playground area with additional artificial lawn covering and seating.

• Framed artwork now fills our main building and we will spread this throughout the site as funding allows. Great thanks to the PTA for supporting this.

• During this half term improvements have also been made to the stairwells in some areas, and to Reception.

Open Events: We have hosted a variety of evening and day time Open Events. Thanks go to our student body who are such excellent ambassadors for LPGS.

DEAR: Feedback on this initiative has been extremely positive. Even those older students who may have been sceptical at first recognise the value of taking time each day, to pause and read for pleasure.

As with our expectation that our school community arrive punctually to all events without the prompts of the bell, students have adapted and met the expectations of DEAR in a way that is quite exceptional.

This exceptional ability for most students to meet LPGS expectations the vast majority of the time allows staff time to invest in planning engaging and well-structured lessons and trips, rather than dealing with behavioural issues.

When students do breech our expectations, we not only impose sanctions but also explain why all of our ‘rules’ contribute to their experience at LPGS, one in which they can develop the knowledge and characteristics necessary for success.

As outlined in previous communications, some students will achieve the status of LPGS Scholars. The criteria for this is very demanding. Students are being asked to collate evidence in a digital portfolio that shows the development of their LPGS learning characteristics.

This is to help students feel positive about their personal development both in and out of school, and allows us to recognise achievements and caring responsibilities.

Next term we will begin a series of challenges to help students develop in all six areas.

Food Hygiene: Independent Catering have hygiene inspections once every 18 months. We are delighted to share with you that we have received the top rating of 5.

A Message from the School Governors

Dear Parents and Carers - As the new Chair of Governors I would like to thank Craig Anderson, our previous Chair who remains on the Governing Body for all his hard work over the last two years. He has built up a strong team of Governors who dedicate a lot of time and expertise to the school and I am delighted to be supported by them in my transition into the role. This summer saw our best results in GCSE and A-Level for some years and this is testament to the hard work of all the staff and students. Students continue to achieve amazing results and are continually making strong progress throughout the school. We would like to welcome all the new Year 7 and Year 12 students and parent/carers to the school and wish them all great success in their time at LPGS. The Autumn term is always a busy one, we have already had the Information Evening, Year 6 Open Evening, Sixth Form Open Evening and the Sports Awards evening. It is always lovely to see so many parent/carers at these events and the Governors always welcome feedback from you. Wishing you a relaxing half term - Elaine Cooper, Chair of Governors, Langley Park School for Girls

Sports Awards Evening

One of the biggest events in our department happened on Thursday 10th October with our annual Sports Awards evening. Students and parents were invited to the evening following various achievements in PE and sport throughout the previous year and were treated to a motivating speech and photo opportunity with ex-England Netball captain Pamela Cookey. Pamela spoke brilliantly about her journey to elite level sport being littered with disappointment and the need to be resilient. She also impressed upon the girls of continuing their education as she did at the University of Bath before joining an apprenticeship scheme with Airbus. Her speech also covered messages around mental health and bouncing back from setbacks and using them to make you stronger in the future. Pamela then presented all our winners with their awards, with big prizes going to:

•Natalie S, Contribution to School Sport

•Harriet G, Junior Outstanding Performer

•Eliza P, Senior Outstanding Performer

•KS4 Badminton, Team of the Year

All winners received a certificate and either a fabric badge to be sewn onto their PE skirt, a medal or a trophy for their efforts. They will also be awarded P points via SIMS.

The evening was a real testament to the commitment and talent our girls give to their sport both in and outside of school. Well done to all our winners. Any parents, carers or students wishing to see the pictures from the night can do so on our Sports Awards Firefly page.

Miss Bush, Head of PE

Year 13 Biology A-Level students at The Millennium Seedbank, Wakehurst Place

Year 13 Biology A-Level students enjoyed a fantastic day at The Millennium Seedbank managed by Kew at Wakehurst Place, deep in the Sussex countryside. The aim of the trip was twofold – firstly to familiarise students with the globally significant work of the seedbank; secondly to enable the students to engage in some ‘real-life’ practical work. The seedbank stores seeds from all over the world and provides a safe-haven for species that might otherwise be lost. The practical work involved students assessing gradients of plant coverage in a recovering hay meadow, and a second experiment measuring plant biodiversity in coppiced and non-coppiced woodland. All the activities across the day were chosen because of their direct links to the specification of the students' A-Level Biology course. Not only was it a fun day out, but luckily the rain stayed away too (mostly).

Sixth Form Language and Literature Students Take A Crash Course in Teen Dialect at The British Library

Students of the A-Level Language and Literature course took a trip to The British Library, the national library of the UK, estimated to contain somewhere between 170 and 200 million items in its collection, on the 16th September 2019. Students attended two workshops relevant to their course: The Women’s Liberation Movement and Sounds Familiar? During The Women’s Liberation Movement workshop students had the opportunity to explore a range of texts, including copies of the feminist publication ‘Spare Rib’. They explored feminism as a counter-culture movement, discussing the ways that ideology propaganda promotes ‘traditional’ gender roles. They then explored the ways that these have been resisted, challenged and changed. Students reflected on gender issues today and in their own lives. After lunch, students attended Sounds Familiar?, a workshop exploring spoken language and how it has changed and evolved through time. Students learned about language change, language variation, and regional vocabulary, pronunciation and grammar in the UK. A highlight of the day was discovering the variety of ways someone could be described as being attractive across a broad geographical and age spectrum. They had the opportunity to listen to a range of curated recordings of spoken language and then to consider their own use of dialect in their everyday speech. It was interesting to see students reflect on the variations within their own spoken language and account for what factors may have impacted upon that. The rest of the afternoon was spent freely exploring the Treasures Gallery and all it has to offer. The day was thoroughly enjoyed by both staff and students alike and will inform many of the units of work students have or will go on to study during the course.

By Mrs S McCarthy

Year 13 Business Studies visit to Leo Burnett

As part of Advertisings Unlocked project to create opportunities for students to experience a day in an Adverting agency, Year 13 A-Level business students visited one of the world’s leading advertising agencies, Leo Burnett. They worked on a real life project for a new McDonalds advertising campaign, they came up with some fabulous ideas and then presented them to the Leo Burnett team. Students' feedback on the day was amazing. One student said “this has been unbelievable, I am going to change my UCAS statement as I now know what I want to do in the future”

Year 13 Business Studies Entrepreneur visit

Brighton based entrepreneur Kelly Scales from “Airhost For You” visited year 13 Business A-level class to share her experiences in setting up and running a number of businesses. Students enthusiastically asked many interesting questions as a number of them wish to set up their own business in the future.

Visual Arts - Year 7 Creative Digital Media project

Visual Arts has now introduced a new Year 7 project based on Creative Digital Media. Over the course of this academic year all 240 Year 7 students will login to their new Adobe CC account and learn how to use Adobe Spark as a digital sketchbook and they will learn aspects of Adobe Photoshop to help them manipulate images. This project is a drive to ensure that we develop digital literacy skills in all our KS3 students so that they become more confident with new digital technologies and they feel more prepared for GCSE and sixth Form courses later on in their studies.

The project is a huge undertaking requiring funding, IT expertise and a lot of time to ensure everything runs smoothly. We would like to thank the PTA for the support they have given us in the last few years to purchase new, fast running computers and helping us to improve the quality of some old laptops. We would also like to thank the IT Department for their huge efforts in offering us much needed support to ensure all the hardware and software runs effectively.

Visual Arts has made the leap into Adobe CC and all our students can now begin to develop their digital literacy skills and express their creativity with new technology.

Mr Fox Joyce (Head of Visual Arts) was invited to the Adobe headquarters in October 2019 to speak about this innovative project at a round table event for different educators from various parts of the country. The main focus of the event was to question how educators need to seriously and proactively consider teaching and learning with new digital technologies in order to aid their students to develop their digital literacy skills in a rapidly changing digital world.

Year 7 Creative Free Writing

In the English Department we have dedicated one lesson over the two weeks for free writing. Students are using a fantastic resource called ‘Just Write’, published by the English and Media Centre. Students are invited to draft their work in their notebooks before writing their final pieces in their ‘Just Write’ portfolios. Some examples of titles students have been working with include: ‘Let’s Get Personal’; ‘The Future You’ and ‘What’s in a Name?’. As well as a variety of titles to work with, students have explored different forms and genres, for example, poetry, newspaper articles and openings to a novel. The portfolio of creative writing will be continued throughout Year 8 and weave into the creative writing they are required to complete throughout the KS3 curriculum. Below are some examples of students’ creative free writing:

We hope that students are relishing the opportunity to write freely and I would encourage them to show their parents/carers their fantastic free writing.

By Ms J Walker

Visual Arts 6th Form trip to Hastings

In late September 2019 BTEC Art and Design Year 12 students joined with our A-Level Photography Year 12 students on our annual trip to sunny Hastings. All students looked to develop their camera and drawing skills. They used key artists such as Aaron Siskind, Martin Parr, Ed Burtnsky and Brett Weston to help then develop work around the theme of, A Sense of Place.

LPGS STEM careers

In September, a group of Year 11 students went to the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst for a day of learning about STEM careers. There were over 50 employers and organisations there, offering advice on how to get into the vast range of STEM careers. Highlights of the day included Malena and Miranda operating an army bomb disposal robot, speaking to the people who are finding ways to safely decommission nuclear power stations, VR headsets, the 7-seater bicycle and building a scale model of the Severn Bridge, then testing it out – with Mr Wheeldon being the guinea pig! We left having learnt there is much more to STEM than we first thought.

Duke of Edinburgh Award

Over the weekend of the 4th-6th October twelve intrepid explorers from Year 12 went in the countryside around the famous white cliffs of Dover on their practice expedition for their Silver Duke of Edinburgh Award. Despite some rain and the nights drawing in, they all ended the weekend tired but in one piece. There were impressive views over the English Channel and they were surprised to find out their phones thought they were in France at one point. They now have the other three sections of the Award to get started with and get ready for their qualifier expedition in the Peak District in late June. Well done to all involved.

By Mr Wheeldon and Miss Keogh

“From Friday 4th – Sunday 6th October two groups of Year 12 students embarked on their practise expedition for their silver DofE award. Unfortunately the weather was not pleasant all the time, with heavy rain pouring at some points. The whole weekend was very wet but fun. We all pulled together and got through the weekend as a group and helped each other out when we seemed to be struggling. One member of our group (Lucy) brought a radio with her which helped to keep everybody’s morale high, even when some of us were starting to hit a low point. One of the biggest challenges for me was having to walk through multiple fields of cows, as we had all our kit on us and they are very large animals that looked intimidating. However, there were many highlights over the weekend, with some being the walk along the coast, or when people struggled to get up with the load on their backs, or even trying to attempt tossing in a round of London’s Burning. Overall, as the group pulled together and acted as one, the whole experience was productive and we all have a positive attitude going into our real expedition which is in June.” by Sian W.

It’s not too late for Year 9 and Year 10 to join in with the Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award. They can complete the 2-day expeditions and complete a physical, skill and volunteering activity. Reply slips must be with Miss Keogh by the end of the first week after half term. Students or parents with questions are welcome to ask us. More information can be found at www.dofe.org

Visual Arts Y10 GCSE Photography trip

In September 2019 new Year 10 GCSE Photography students made a trip to Borough Market and the Tate Modern in London. The trip was designed to help the students take photographs to build primary source material for their developing coursework and develop their use of subject specific language through Tate's WAYS IN project. At the Tate Modern the students studied the work of Japanese photographer, Naoya Hatakeyama.

Photographic competition

The Visual Arts Faculty are running a photographic competition. The theme is “Emotions”. Entries should be sent to efj@lpgs.bromley.sch.uk as a high res JPEG image by 4th November 2019 by 3.30pm. There will be prizes!

Where are they now?

Our two daughters left Langley Girls more than a decade ago and today, thanks to the educational foundation you gave them, both are well established in interesting careers. I thought you and your staff might like to know that all your hard work, caring and patience paid off. Elizabeth Brock finished her A-Levels in 2003 and went on to study for a master’s degree in physics-astrophysics at the University of Exeter. After graduation she worked a year for a defence contractor, then returned to Exeter to pursue a PhD in Physics. Lizzy is now at the Metropolitan Weather Service in Exeter where she works on projects related to climate change. During her time at Langley she wielded a pretty mean hockey stick as part of the girl’s team; it fostered her love of competitive sports. She went on to take part in international competitions as a member of the women’s GB Dragon Boating team and today competes in kayak competitions in her spare time. Emmeline Brock finished her A Levels in 2007 and enrolled in medical sciences at the University of Edinburgh. After graduation she went on to study medicine at St George’s, University of London, and today is specialising in obstetric surgery at King’s College Hospital. Lizzy and Emma asked to please say hi for them to Dr Sykes and Mr Small, who both taught them physics. They send both their best wishes and a big ‘thank you’ for making the sciences so fascinating. Keep up the good work! Pat Gerber and Mike Brock / parents of Lizzy and Emma

Drama - Gecko Physical Theatre Workshop

On Monday 30th September we welcomed Kerry Frampton from Splendid Theatre Company for an introduction to the work and techniques of Peter Brook. We were inspired by his style and learnt techniques for a ‘rough theatre’ and ‘immediate theatre’.

On Saturday the 5th of October the Year 13 Drama students participated in a physical theatre workshop with Gecko at Shirley High. It was a really beneficial day as it sparked new ideas and gave us a better understanding of the style of Gecko, which is our practitioner for our final scripted piece. It was extremely exhausting but we all found it fun and useful as the leader of the workshop was amazing and the students and teachers at Shirley High were friendly and welcoming. We did a variety of activities that pushed us all both physically and emotionally. The main thing that I took from the workshop was to just go for anything even if it sounds ridiculous because inspiration can come from anything. All the activities in the workshop focused on breath and feeding the “inner fireball”, I learnt that breath can change a movement or scene majorly and it was interesting to explore this. My A-Level drama skills have hugely improved after the workshop and now I feel more confident with the style of Gecko to incorporate in my final A-Level piece.

By Lucy H Year 13

Year 9 students have been refining their mask skills this half term ….

Visual Arts Year 11 GCSE Photography trip - The Photographers' Gallery

On Wednesday 18th September 2019 our Year 11 GCSE Photography students travelled to The Photographers’ Gallery in central London to see the exhibition, Urban Impulses - Latin American Photography.


This term we have started using DEAR (drop everything and read) for ten minutes at the end of lunch time and just before the start of lesson 5. The whole school is involved, students, staff, support staff, site staff, everyone. This is a nationwide campaign aimed at getting everyone to practise reading which we know enables all and especially our students to acquire knowledge at a higher level and develop important reading skills for coursework and examinations.

We are doing it here... they are doing it all the way over there...

The Music Department

This academic year has kicked off with a huge amount of exciting events and opportunities for students that enjoy making music. Following the ‘Inspire’ Concert held for Year 7 at the end of their first ever week at LPGS, we have started our unique violin, trombone and keyboard scheme with the first group of students. They are now half way through their sessions learning to play an instrument (from scratch in most cases!) and we are already spotting huge potential as they are picking up the new skills they need impressively quickly.

Preparation is also well under way for the Year 7 Mamma Mia concerts that are next term and they are all having great fun in lessons seeing how loudly they can sing each song! Open auditions for solos are being held on Friday 8th November at lunchtime in E007.

New and existing extra-curricular groups have now all started and much excitement spread through the school last week when the steel pans arrived. The group cannot wait to get started on their first piece for the Christmas Concert.

Year 11 solo recitals took place at the start of October and they did brilliantly despite having to compete with the thunder and huge storm outside! Many took on board their feedback from Year 10 and showed that they had made progress in this part of the course which is worth 15%.

And finally, we had our tour concert last night which is a chance for parents to see what we are taking across the channel to audiences in The Netherlands at the end of this week. The students are performing at three different venues as well as having some down time at a theme park, clog and cheese factory, Anne Frank's house and more.

A Message from the History Department

Year 13 University of Kent History Conference - Bromley High

‘The History Conference gave us the opportunity to explore History beyond the curriculum. We particularly enjoyed learning about the slave trade and the Windrush scandal. We were also able to network with university tutors which supported us with our UCAS applications.’- Y13 History students

Supporting the UCL Centre for Holocaust Education

During the Summer Term, Year 9 History students participated in research for the UCL Centre for Holocaust Education. After completing their Holocaust study students completed a survey on their understanding of the Holocaust to help UCL identify common student misconceptions regarding the Holocaust. Whilst this was not a test of how much our students knew, the results showed that Year 9 students had a clear understanding of key questions regarding anti-Semitism and the Holocaust. Year 9 students at LPGS scored well above the average score in all questions, indicating that they were less likely to have misconceptions about the Holocaust than other students involved in the study.

STEM - Y12 students celebrate Ada Lovelace Day

On Tuesday 8th November a small group of Year 12 students celebrated Ada Lovelace Day by going to Ada Lovelace Live, an event showcasing the best of women working in STEM . They heard talks from Dr Bala Chaudhary (DePaul University, Chicago) on microbes in soils, Dr Katie Steckles on what a mathematician actually does all day, Yolanda Ohene on MRI scans and Dame Professor Jocelyn Bell-Burnell on improving the gender balance in scientific research. The students were particularly impressed with Dr Sally Le Page, pictured, and her thoughts on Bee Movie.

We were delighted to attend this event and look forward to seeing a LPGS student on stage there in the future.

Thames Festival Photographic Competition

The Thames Festival Trust in partnership with the Port of London Authority is proud to announce that our Thames Lens 2019 Photography Competition is now open for entries.

The River Thames is teeming with activity, life, industry, culture, and holds the key to London’s history. What better focus for a photography competition? For fourteen years, Thames Lens has provided amateur photographers with the chance to get out and snap unique perspectives of the River Thames and the rich narratives that it provides. So, photographers, head to the north bank of the river, south bank of the river, or onto the river and discover the Thames through your lens!

Women of the World Speed Mentoring on the London Eye

On Friday 11th October, to celebrate International Day of the Girl, six of us went with Miss Artini to the London Eye. We spent an hour with six mentors, who were leading and inspirational women in their respective fields. These included a social media marketer, a journalist, a set designer, somebody from the British Council, a youth specialist and somebody who worked in the music industry. We engaged in conversations with them about personal challenges, choices after a levels (university or work), future ambitions, feminism and about pushing ourselves to the best of our abilities. We all found the mentoring session very interesting and came out feeling extremely motivated. As well as this, they gave us time to take in the view. After this, we went to the National Theatre to see a panel talk with a special guest Clara Amfo (BBC Radio 1 DJ). She talked about being a black woman the media industry and the everyday struggles she has faced. She also spoke about the lack of diversity in many industries and how actions should be taken. Additionally, she emphasised the importance of confidence and challenging ourselves to reach our full potential in everything that we do.

Overall, we all found the day really valuable and informative. It has given us further insight into a range of career paths and options in the future.

Emily H, Tilly C, Poppy B, Joanne H, Rhianna B & Trisha V

New Furniture for the Sixth Form Base

A huge thank you to the MDC Group for donating excellent new furniture for our Sixth Form base earlier this term; we really appreciate all their help and support.


Created with images by castleguard - "heart sweetheart leaf" • Rita Chou - "untitled image" • vulkahn-22 - "dragon boat dragon boating paddle" • PIRO4D - "mask pulcinella pulcinella mask" • flotty - "berlin memorial holocaust" • Nicolas Ladino Silva - "Flower photographer"