'Pride of Willows'
Pride of Willows Awards
I hope you had a great half term break, this term leading up to Easter is a short but, as ever, a busy one. It’s a rewarding experience to work at Willows High School, your children are amazing, and I’d like to take this opportunity to keep you up to date with a number of things that have happened in the school so far this term.
Pride of Willows Awards
The first week back I gave out more ‘Pride of Willows’ certificates than ever before. These recognise students who make a positive contribution to the school by having excellent attendance, behaving responsibly and respectfully and putting a great deal of effort into their learning. Well done to all of the students who received one, display them proudly!
We have made changes to our detention system to make it easier for students to follow and more effective in ensuring that the behaviour of students at Willows continues to improve.
Every time a student decides to show instances of behaviour that is either disrespectful to or disrupts the learning of others, they will be allocated referral points. The more serious the incident, the more points they accrue. If a student accumulates 10 points, this will result in a 1 hour detention after school.
Detentions will be run in houses, each house will have a different detention day. You will be informed in good time if your child has built up enough points to warrant a detention.
If students fail to turn up for the 1 hour detention or misbehave during the detention, they will be internally excluded the following day, including breaktime and lunchtime (food and toilet breaks will be provided) and we will contact you to attend a meeting with a member of staff to discuss the way forward to ensure this is not repeated.
Uniform is also the best it has ever been, however there are still a number of year 7 and 8 students who do not wear their blazers to school. If, for any reason, you are having difficulties in getting your hands on a blazer, please contact the school and we will do whatever we can to help.
Attendance is on the increase, we are currently at 93% which is 2% above the attendance rate this time last year, however we still need to increase it further. Please could you ensure that your child is in school as much as possible and in their registration class by 8.40 am.
Educational capital is the term meaning all the opportunities and experiences the school provides outside of the classroom. We are constantly looking for ways to improve the learning experiences of our students.
I was lucky enough to be invited to a delicious meal at the Llandaff Cardiff University campus which was prepared and served by students from Willows and Michaelston. As always with these events the food and service was outstanding, and the students did the school and their families proud.
I also had the privilege of attending the presentation of the work some of our students have been creating using stop motion animation. The creativity and talent of our students never ceases to amaze me.
A number of our year 11 students took part in an army training course during the first weekend of the half term holiday. They thoroughly enjoyed it and developed team building and problem solving skills that will be beneficial to them throughout their lives.
Thanks to Mrs Kaye for ensuring that all of these experiences, and more, can take place.
Our Multi Use Games Area (MUGA) was installed over the half term break, the school managed to get this £80,000 facility for free thanks to our Estates Manager, Gareth Cook. We were also able to have it installed for free by Dawnus Ferrovial, a construction company who we are forging exciting links with. The students are loving it.
One thing we would very much like to develop this year is the link with parents, businesses and other members of the community. We believe that our students would benefit greatly from the support of adults other than their teachers to provide inspiration, aspiration and motivation to develop them into responsible and resilient citizens. We are currently, in partnership with Cardiff University, redesigning our Learning Resource Centre to become a hub for parents to come in to school to find out more about us. More news on that as it develops. If you have the time to maybe come in to read with a student or help out in technology lessons, for example, please get in touch with Mr Ritter at the school to let us know.
Mr Ritter and Mrs Kaye are also in the process of setting up a ‘Friends of Willows’ group, if you are interested in getting involved, please contact the school. The first event is a ‘Trivia Night’ on Tuesday 19th April it would be great if you could come and join us.
Wizard of Oz
Rehearsals are underway for this year’s performance of the Wizard of Oz. Based on past experience, the quality of the productions from the Performing Arts has been outstanding. I’m sure that demand for tickets will be great, so keep an eye out for more information.
If you want to keep up with information regarding the school as it happens, please follow us on Twitter using @willowshigh.