Dear Families, Friends, Students and Staff
I am so pleased to be joining the community of Canbury and have, over the last few days been able to start familiarising myself with the School. I am very excited to be joining you all at this optimistic time: the beginning of an academic year in which we, and the students, can look forward to a resumption of normality in terms of getting back to a full programme of activities and, of course, learning.
Today, we were absolutely delighted to welcome back years 7, 12 and 13. They began with their lateral flow tests (which went off without a hitch) then inductions, followed by normal lessons. We also saw some other familiar faces who came in today to acclimatise or just to say ‘hello’ (‘Hello’, Matthew A!). The atmosphere, early this morning, was one of palpable excitement mingled with frissons of intrepidation - a few nerves are very normal and expected at the beginning of a new adventure.
Year 7 have made an excellent start, seemed to bond very well and also seemed to remember all they had learned about Canbury from their induction day in the Summer Term and their picnic in the park. We are very pleased to have you join our family: Rory, Bethany, Francesca, Lydia, Theo and Evan!
Year 12 navigated the convolutions of the NHS Test and Trace like professionals and then went over to the Sixth Form block to hear more about the the imminent trip to coastal Calshot, in Hampshire, where they can look forward to Mediterranean temperatures of 25 and 26 degrees on Monday and Tuesday of next week. They then sampled their first lessons of the academic year.
The staff were at least as excited as the students! We are fortunate to have such a dedicated and curious staff who are always looking for new ways to improve our provision and support of students. Ms Chorazyczewska delivered a thought-provoking and inspiring session on Growth Mindset, elements of which we hope to share with the students in the not too distant future. Many of you will be familiar with Carol Dweck’s work in which she emphasises that we are born to learn, to develop our skills and to have impact on the world. She contrasts this ‘growth mindset’ with a ‘fixed mindset’ in which intelligence, skills and confidence cannot change. We also heard more about various therapies that we offer. The two days of INSET were, indeed, a snap-shot of life-long learning.
This year, we hope to be able to enjoy most school trips, drama, music and sporting activities, in line with the relaxation of restrictions across society from Step 4. But we will have to continue to work together to follow measures like testing, hand hygiene and good ventilation to minimise disruption and keep students where they belong – in the classroom.
I am also very much looking forward to meeting parents at the scheduled coffee mornings (see dates below).
I hope you all have a super weekend and I look forward to seeing the whole school back here on Monday.
Students of the week
Congratulations to Otti, Matthew, Harry L, Harry A and Shaaiyon who sat GCSE Statistics early in the summer. The commitment each of you put into the after-school lessons every Monday resulted in everyone passing, with grades ranging from 9 to 5. This is testament to your exceedingly hard work. Well done!
Shiny happy people arrive at Canbury.
Some important dates for your diaries...
Calshot Sixth Form Residential: Monday and Tuesday 6th and 7th September:
KS3 Meet the Headmistress Coffee Morning: Monday 20th September, 9.15-10.15am.
KS4/5 Meet the Headmistress Coffee Morning: Wednesday 22nd September, 9.15-10.15am.
Meet the Headmistress - all parents/carers who couldn't make the above, Thursday 23rd September 6-8pm. (No students please).
Saturday 25th September: Canbury Open Morning. ALL students expected to attend in full school uniform. Please let Ms Yates know if your child cannot attend.
Years 12 and 13 Parents/Carers Evening: Thursday 7th October, remotely, 5-7pm.
Two week half-term break: Monday 18th October to Friday 28th October.
Meet the teachers for parents and carers of Year 7s and other new students: Wednesday 3rd November, 6-9pm. No students please.
Year 8 parents/carers evening: Tuesday 16th November, remotely, 5-7pm.
Canbury Winter Music and Drama Festival: Thursday 25th October, 6.30-8pm. All welcome.
Whole School Christmas ice skating at Hampton Court: Monday 6th December in the afternoon.
Please note, all dates are subject to change if any Government guidelines change.
The return of something wonderful!
Mr Batten can hardly contain his excitement with news of the re-introduction of independent reading at the start of KS3 English lessons. "It's due to public demand," he announced happily, before asking that all students ensure they bring their personal reading book of choice to school. He's even designed a handy little sheet which students will be urged to use as an additional literacy focus tool. (Top tip - make sure it's a book you're happy to share with all.)
Talking of books, The Canbury School Book Club has some classic reads in store. We start in the Autumn Term with 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles' by Thomas Hardy. The Spring Term will see us enjoying Philip Pullman's "The Tin Princess". The club will then move on, in the Summer Term, to "Twelfth Night" from the bard himself, William Shakespeare. All are welcome.
Canbury Young Mariners are all set to go!
Thankfully this half term we will be able to resume our water sports curriculum during Games at Thames Young Mariners, writes Mr Barnes.
On the days of these sessions, students must come to school in full Canbury PE kit and bring with them the clothes which they will be wearing in the water. These should be an old pair of tracksuit bottoms (not jeans), an old pair of trainers (not flip flops or sandals), a t-shirt and a thin jumper. Along with these items students should also bring a towel, a spare set of underwear and a packed lunch.
We will be leaving school at the start of lunchtime and will eat and then change at Thames Young Mariners. We will be back at school at 15:35pm on these afternoons.
Please note that KS3 have their first session this Monday (the 6th), so should come into school in, and with, the items stated above.
Finally, can I ask all parents/guardians to complete the Google Form giving consent for your child to participate in this activity. It is included in the information email that has been sent to you by the office today.
I look forward to seeing all the students on the water next week!
Ms Yates isn't our only new addition to staff. A big welcome to Mrs Burt and Mr Labinjo who join this term. Mrs Burt is our new ICT & Computing teacher and says she is going to be introducing some great new resources over the next few weeks. She is very much looking forward to meeting everyone.