CRA Newsletter - 30.04.2021 Half Term 5 - April 30th 2021

Principal's Update

It has been lovely walking the academy this week to see students flourishing in some of our practical subjects. I was welcomed into a lesson where students had produced supermarket standard scones and sausage and bean hot pot. In art students were busy with geometric shape paintings and in science it was pleasing to see some practical experiments going ahead. In other practical activities our students have been working hard preparing for the summer cup and we will all be hoping for some excellent results. The House Bottle Rocket challenge was hugely successful with lots of staff and students watching and cheering each other on. There is a lovely feeling of sportsmanship and although we are three houses we certainly feel like one community.

I heard some fantastic responses from our year 8s yesterday when questioned on the different types of erosion, longshore drift, and deposition. They responded like a scholar and thought and wrote like geographers.

We had an assembly on Peer on Peer abuse, a topic which has been in the media recently. Our students were very sensible in discussions about this challenging topic, and we have raised awareness of the various kinds of abuse that can occur including; bullying, cyberbullying, sexual violence, harassment, sexting and physical abuse. Miss King explained what each of the categories referred to, for example the category of physical abuse includes hitting, kicking, hair pulling, shaking, biting so that students really understood what is not acceptable. We are fortunate that these incidents are reasonably rare at CRA.

Please speak to your son/daughter to see if they have any questions or concerns in this area.

I hope you have a lovely bank holiday weekend and that we have some warm and sunny weather.

Mrs Jones - Principal

Term Dates 2021-22

Please visit the CRA website to review the updated term dates for the next academic year.

Home Lateral Flow Testing

We would like students to perform tests on a Sunday and Wednesday evening, reporting the results via these links to both the NHS and also CRA.

If you require further kits, students can collect these from reception.

Did you know that parents and support bubbles of school children, as well as anyone who has to leave home to go to work, can now get rapid Covid-19 tests twice a week. Order yours now here.

Further guidance from the Government and Department of Education in respect of home testing can be found below:

A copy of the risk assessment and privacy policy relating to Lateral Flow Testing can be found on the CRA website.

Mr Linforth - Academy Operations Manager

Training opportunities across David Ross Education Trust schools

At Charles Read Academy we are pleased to be a lead school of the East Midlands Hub of the National Mathematics and Physics SCITT (NMAPS) and the East Midlands & South Lincolnshire Hub of the National Modern Languages (NML) SCITT. We would like to share this with our school community, so that you and your wider network are aware of the teacher training opportunities in Mathematics, Physics or Modern Languages with our hub.

If you, or individuals within your wider network, are looking to change your career or have recently finished a university degree, this may be an amazing opportunity. Teaching offers the chance to inspire young people and enables you to give something back. As well as a chance to train within one of our academies, you will also have a chance to link up with other regional SCITT trainees. As part of your training, you will also be able to engage with networks within our dynamic and supportive professional subject communities.

Please review the attached letters and brochures for further details.

CRA Values

Principal’s Resilience Award – Term 4

Awarded to Riley Taylor, for demonstrating one of the C’s of Resilience – Contribution and Coping

Riley Taylor – Caeli 10

What do you feel you have done to deserve this award?

I feel like I have managed to cope well during COVID 19 as well as moving home. I also felt I have shown the courage to speak on the microphone during live lessons in school and at home and this was not easy for me to do.

What does the award mean to you?

This award gives me the courage to go on do well and it also inspires me to give everyone around school the encouragement to do the best they can in lessons as well as during House competitions which I love.

What would you say to someone who struggles to be resilient?

I would say - just keep trying and one day you will be like me and feel more confident. Follow your heart and your dreams to be ambitious and reach your goals - You can do it!

Uniform expectations

It is vital that we ensure everyone is adhering to the Academy Uniform Policy - details of which can be found here.

Students without a medical note will go into IE for incorrect uniform.

Face Masks

Masks are required to be worn on all school transport, during lessons and communal indoor spaces. Please ensure you have a spare mask just in case it requires changing throughout the day. We appreciate that communication whilst wearing a mask can be tricky, so please see the poster below for tips on effective communication whilst wearing a mask.

Wearing a mask at school is compulsory, unless your child has a medical lanyard. Masks should be blue or black and plain and worn at all times whilst inside the school buildings. If a child refuses to wear their mask they will be sent to the COVID isolation room and parents will be called to collect them. This is a non-negotiable and for everyone's safety.

Careers' Corner

Your Future Career Path

It is a challenging task to think about your choice of career and the job you might like to do in the future. Some students have no idea about what they would like to do as there are so many different careers and jobs out there. This makes deciding on the perfect career very difficult. That is why it is important to explore different careers and job roles, to figure out what interests you, what jobs and areas you would like to learn more about and explore the possible career routes.

Having a job that interests you is a key factor to being happy where you work. Feeling motivated to learn about a business and job role is what employers are looking for.

To help you explore what career and job you might be interested in. Answer these questions:

  1. What is important to me?
  2. What is my dream job? Why?
  3. What topics and ideas spark my curiosity?
  4. What comes naturally to me?
  5. How do I like to spend my time?
  6. What are my favourite classes, and why?
  7. What activities make me feel happy?
  8. When do I feel most comfortable and at ease?

Use the extra time that you may have over the Bank Holiday week end to sign into Unifrog and explore their files- particularly those relating to post 16 choices and University Education.

Please visit the Careers' page on the CRA website for this weeks update and details of previous publications.

Mrs Rees - Careers' Lead

Thinking Ahead – My Future, My Choice

Attention Year 8 & Year 9!

  • What are your future plans & career possibilities?
  • What plans to do you have after you have completed your GCSEs?
  • Do you plan to go on to further/higher education? If so what courses might you study?
  • What career ideas do you have for the future at the moment?

In year 7, 8 and 9 you will be learning new skills and knowledge that will give you the confidence to help you plan your next steps. This process starts with your careers education in school which will encourage you to think about your strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes. You will also start to make some important decisions that could influence your future career path as you will be choosing your subjects to study for GCSE. This process will begin for all Year 9 students early next year.

Each week we will show you examples of the various careers linked to the subject you are studying. This week’s career idea is ‘Jobs related to Sport and Leisure’.

Mr Drumm - Assistant Principal

Attendance Update

Celebrating Tutor Group attendance 8th March to 30th April 2021

Caeli8 are leading the way with amazing attendance of 99.34%

100% Tutor Group attendance this week

Aqua10 and Caeli9 have both had 4 days of 100% attendance this week

We are so proud of these achievements and this will be celebrated in our house assemblies next week. These Tutor Groups showing CRA values of Resilience, Courage, Aspiration and Ambition.

Coming soon to CRA - Are you a CRA HERO?

Coming soon to CRA - In it to win in Bingo

Can you have 10 days of 100% attendance at school?

Why do I need to contact school each day of absence?

During school hours, we as a school have a responsibility for the safeguarding of your child. This duty continues even if your child is at home unwell. Contacting us daily is not just about letting us know your child will not be attending school, it is also an opportunity for us to stay in touch, make sure you are all safe and offer any support you may need. If you do not contact school on the day of absence, this will prompt school to try to contact you. If phone, MCAS, email or text contact is not successful, a home visit may be attempted. Please do keep us informed of your child’s whereabouts and wellbeing.

Miss Butcher - Attendance Manager


Happy is such a wonderful feeling and when we feel happy, we get on better with the people around us, smile more and have a positive attitude.

There are hormones that support us in being happy and we can increase it by doing certain things. We can help ourselves be happy, but we can also help our children to be happy too.

The image above shows ways that we can boost our 'happy hormones'.

So next time your children are in a bad mood, try out some of the suggestions, work together to get them into a more positive mindset and their mood should hopefully change.

Mrs Dexter & Mrs Miller-Brown - SEN Team

House News

House Bottle Rockets – ‘Lift Off For Aqua’

Lift off for Aqua as they claim victory in the first house competition of the Summer Term, Bottle Rockets – claiming victory in this competition for the second year in a row.

On Wednesday 28th April Students and staff at Charles Read Academy teamed up to represent Aqua, Caeli and Terra in Bottle Rockets, putting their scientific skills to the test to work out the most effective formula to fire their chosen rockets the furthest distance.

Each house selected two bottles to use, from a wide selection of shapes and sizes. Once the house teams had selected their bottle for each launch, they collaborated to work out the water needed and force they believed was required to fire the most effective rocket over the longest distance.

Timing was pivotal due to slightly windy conditions. Timing the launch alongside the tail wind played to the advantage of the house teams who took into consideration the effects the elements may have on their launch.

Unfortunately for Terra and Caeli the wind did not play to their advantage as their launches were almost immediately forced to the ground, covering very little distance. In contrast, Aqua as a team looked like they found the perfect balance of water to pressure ratio as both of their launches cleared 20 metres, with the final attempt reaching an impressive 37.8m.

Victory for Aqua meant they claimed 70 points, followed by Terra in 2nd with 40 points and Caeli in 3rd with 15 points.

Well done to everyone who represented their house and Ms Burrell for supporting in the delivery of the competition.

House Dodgeball – Next Week!

The next competition in the House Championship calendar is Dodgeball, starting on Tuesday 4th May to Monday 10th May. The week long competition will see students across all year groups represent their house teams, competing on separate days to maintain year group bubbles. The event starts with the year 7s and finishing with the year 11 students.

Team sheets for the event have been pinned up on each of the House boards in the HUB. Students selected to take part in this event must wear their full PE Kit.

Follow us on the House social media platforms, Twitter and Instagram, for all the latest news and results from each event including action shots from the competitions - @CRA_HouseChamp

Mr Webb - Games Master

Young Geographer of the Year 2021

Remapping Our Lives

This year we are asking young people to create an annotated map which reveals how their lives have been shaped by the Covid pandemic.

We are looking for up to 10 KS3 students and up to 10 KS4 students.

Please speak to Mrs Cooper for further details on how to enter.

Mrs Cooper - Head of Humanities Faculty

Table Talk

This week we would like you to discuss what being healthy means and what the link is between physical and mental health. This is so fundamental to a happy and successful life.

A complete state of physical, mental and emotional wellbeing not merely the absence of disease

You could also talk about what could be done in wider society to challenge discrimination, such as mental health campaigns, more funding for mental health charities or services, stronger laws about discrimination of people with mental health, mental health support services in workplaces to both support and destigmatise those with mental health concerns, encourage open-ness around mental health issues, etc.

Word of the Week

Mal: bad, evil (Latin word root)

  • Malice the desire to harm someone; ill will.
  • Malcontent a person who is dissatisfied and rebellious.
  • Malicious characterized by malice; intending or intended to do harm.
  • Watch this video which explains the lifecycle of malaria in a human:

Times Tables

At the end of all lessons students stand behind their chairs in silence to prepare for themselves for the next lesson. From September, on a weekly rota, Years 7 and 8 will be reciting their timetables to help embed them in their long term memory.

Week commencing 3rd May - 11 times table

Accelerated Reader

Week commencing 3rd May during period 4

Year 11 Focus

As we move into a crucial part of the process for awarding grades this year, I thought it was important to share strategies for preparing for the internal assessments. Motivation is a key factor every year in the exam process but this year more so due to the nature of the what will take place, pupils may find it more difficult to find the motivation to revise and thoroughly prepare. I have outlined some things to consider in relation to motivation.

One of the biggest problems with revision is finding the motivation to begin, it can be difficult to know where to start, it isn’t always seen as the most exciting activity and there are often distractions that can get in the way.

Making the decision to make a start is the biggest challenge we face. It can be hard to put pen to paper, so what can we do to make that start Choose the subject you find least daunting and start with that it will feel like less of a mountain to climb.

Note down the things you are confident with and then the areas you need to improve.

Create a routine that works for you. Please open the link below for more ideas.

Mr Lovatt - Head of Performance Faculty

Teen Support

Academic anxiety

With schools closed and teens all studying at home, many are afraid that they’ll be falling behind. On top of that, since exams were cancelled, thousands of kids feel in limbo as they wait for results to come through from the new grading system. Even just doing a few hours of studying a week during lockdown will help them keep on track with their core subjects, and a sense of progress will help fight off worry. Here are some more tips about managing academic anxiety in teens.

“Low self esteem can be extremely damaging long term. If children develop core beliefs such as “I’m not good enough” or “even if I try I don’t succeed, so what’s the point?” this can lead to significant problems in the future.”

Ways to reduce academic anxiety in teen

  • Work on their self-esteem. Remind them that you’re proud of them no matter what, and regularly praise them for little or big things they do well. On the issue of self-esteem, psychologist Dr Kate Jenkins says,
  • Talk to their teachers. If they’re behind in any subjects or finding particular areas difficult, this can have a negative impact on their confidence and cause anxiety. Once you identify where it is they’re struggling though – whether with the quantity or the nature of the work – together you can find specific ways to tackle it. This could be in the form of after-school clubs, extra support or studying with a friend so they can help each other out.
  • Equip them with coping mechanisms personalised for them. If they feel really anxious when they sit down to do some homework, things like meditative breathing, or playing some calming music can help them get in the right headspace. If organisation is an issue (as it is with lots of teens), writing out lists of what they need to do when, and keeping a revision timetable on their desk can help make lots of schoolwork seem less daunting. A one-to-one tutor can be a really effective way to give your teen the extra support they need. Lessons are all tailored to their learning style, and they can target issues like confidence and organisation.
  • Make your home a study-friendly environment. If they have a desk space in a quiet corner of the house, it’ll make it easier for them to sit down and study when they need to.
  • Make sure they get enough sleep each night. Texting their mates into the night or tossing and turning with anxiety can have a knock-on effect on how well they deal with challenges day-to-day.
  • Make time for fun. Even with important exams coming up, giving your teen time to enjoy downtime will help them stay relaxed and keep a balanced lifestyle. It’s important for teens to have a sense of independence – if too much pressure is put on them to study and not have fun, teens can often rebel by not studying at all.

The Sporting Post

Miss Dickson - Sports Enrichment Officer

Dates for your diary

Please click on the parent calendar to see the full list of upcoming events and activities at CRA


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