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 Headteacher's Blog

Thursday
Apr192018

19th April 2018

Last term, as always for this time of year, saw a great deal of hard work and achievement from students and staff alike.  I have been very impressed with the commitment shown by our Year 11 students and the hard work of staff to support them.  Our Year 11 students are fully engaged in preparations for their final GCSE examinations with every lunchtime committed to revision across all subjects. 

Our now annual visit to The Gambia, to continue our work supporting the development of schools there, took place over the Easter break.  Students from Year 11 and the 6th Form are continuing our rich tradition of contribution to education in Gambia.  I have no doubt they will view their participation in this educational trip as an experience of a life time.

Congratulations to our Under 16 Rugby team who have become Worcestershire County champions. They contested the final of the Worcestershire and Herefordshire competition at the home of Worcester Warriors, Six Ways Stadium, on the last day of term.  Sadly, they lost the match, but it was a very close and extremely well-played game. Well done to the team; we are very proud of you.

I would also like to congratulate our Senior Debating Team for reaching the regional finals of the Rotary Youth Speaks competition, well done to Tiegan Richards, Harvey Bowen and Evie Jones.  Ella Harvey was also successful in reaching the regional final of a Rotary competition; in this case, the Young Chef competition.  Well done Ella.  We are grateful to the Kinver Rotary Club for their support for our students and to Miss Brookes and Mrs Barry for providing the staff support for these competitions.

Friday
Feb162018

16th February 2018

We are delighted that the building of our new teaching block is now complete and we receive the keys today.

The block will house Mathematics, English and Modern Foreign Languages departments. We are in the process of procuring IT and furniture for the new block and plan to move in after Easter.

It is a very attractive building, which adds a fresh and inspiring aspect to the school. I am confident this will enhance the learning experience already enjoyed by our students.

Friday
Dec152017

15th December 2017

Over the course of the term, our building projects have progressed and reached an exciting phase.  The main project at the moment, the new teaching block now looks most likely to open after February half term.  We had hoped to open after Christmas but it is certainly worth the delay if it means we can move into the building having had the time to ensure that all planning and procurement is properly in place.  As most of you will know, our new reception area opened after half term.  This has provided excellent accommodation for our administrative staff and we have a fresh new “front” to the school.  All of our recent visitors have been very enthusiastic and complementary about our new look.

We have just reached the end of our consultation on sporting facilities to go with the new sports hall.  The project itself is likely to begin in March.  We can now compile a report on the level of need identified through the consultation which will help us to plan beyond just the sports hall.  We hope to provide a range of facilities to accommodate a variety of sports and leisure activities.  This will be a project which will realise the sports hall first and then develop top quality facilities over time, for our students and for the local community.

Our staff and students have, as ever, been working hard.  Our Year 11 students have just completed their GCSE mock examinations (other than the ones missed on Friday due to our snow closure!).  I really do want to pay tribute to our Year 11 students.  They have been extremely positive and committed to their studies throughout this term.  I have observed a good number of Year 11 lessons this term and the attitude of the students has been outstanding.  I know students find Year 11 quite stressful at times but I am confident all their hard work and commitment will be rewarded with very good results next summer.  It will all have been worth it!

On the sports front, I want to congratulate our Under 16 rugby team who have reached the final of the Worcestershire County Cup competition.  The final would have been played on Tuesday 12th December but the weather has intervened on that front as well.  The team is very much an excellent team of young men working for each other and representing our school with pride.  Many thanks to them.

For this and all the other examples of hard work and achievement this term I thank our staff and students.  I wish them and their families a very happy and peaceful Christmas and hope 2018 is a successful and rewarding year.

Tuesday
Oct172017

17th October 2017

We are now seeing significant changes happening to the appearance of our school as a result of our exciting building projects.

Our new Inclusion Unit opened at the beginning of this term  This has provided improved facilities managed by Miss Elliott and Mrs Hinton-Bowen who are working really successfully in support of so many of our students.  The unit is part of a reorganisation and refurbishment of that section of the “Old Block” which will see the creation of offices and meeting rooms to be used by our Heads of Year.  There will also be a new office for Mr Walker, our Assistant Headteacher, who leads on Student Support. The Headteacher’s office will also be within this section of the school.

The Inclusion Unit has moved from Room 29 in the front of the “Old Block” because that is where our new School Reception has been created. This very impressive new area is where all visitors to the school should report to after half term.  The new School Reception is much more visible to visitors as they enter the school site and creates a very positive centrepiece to the whole school.

Our new teaching block will open for use early next year. I am sure you will agree that it is a very attractive building, which adds a fresh and exciting aspect to the school.  In this block, students will be taught English, Maths and Modern Foreign Languages in bright new classrooms.  I am confident this will enhance the learning experience already enjoyed by our students.

Following on from the opening of the new teaching block, we will begin work on our new Sports Hall and associated facilities.  This is a very exciting project in which we hope to engage the community through a consultation process, which will ask community members for their views on the most desirable facilities to be included within the new development.  I am really looking forward to this phase of the school’s development and really hope you will all take part in the consultation exercise.

Already this term we have seen a number of our students achieving great things in their chosen areas of interest.  Congratulations to Jacob Chance who has become a double world champion at the Under 14 Kick Boxing World Championships in Switzerland.  What a fantastic achievement!

We have two outstanding ballet dancers in Katie Gwinnell and Olivia Tonks.  Both girls performed in The English Youth Ballet performance of The Nutcracker and Ballet Etudes.  Well done girls on being selected for such a high profile performance.

We were delighted to welcome an international rugby star to Kinver High.  Aleki Lutui, former captain of Tonga in several world cup tournaments, visited us from Worcester Warriors to coach our rugby players.  Aleki was very complimentary of our enthusiastic players who work hard and show great potential. 

In addition, watch this space as Mr Wilkes seeks to develop a Sixth Form Rugby Academy…. This is a really exciting project which will provide great opportunities for our budding rugby players.

In closing, I want to congratulate our newly appointed Head Boy and Head Girl: James Keasey and Annie Fellows.  They are the first Head Boy and Girl in our new senior prefect set up in Year 11.  I know they will represent the school as great ambassadors and role models along with their deputy Head Boy and Girl, Josh Harrison and Izzy Tilby.  Our other senior prefects are Emily Meyrick, Jacob Moore, Noah Evans, Harvey Bowen and Tiegan Richards.  We are all really proud of you.

Wednesday
May242017

25th May 2017

Exam season is now in full swing.  GCSE and A Level students have been working tremendously hard with their teachers in preparation for their final exams and it is now that the hard work will pay off.  I wish all of our students well and hope their success leads to bright futures.

On the building front, work on our new teaching block has been ongoing for the past few months.  It is exciting to see the new building taking shape with the ground floor walls in place.  We can now begin to see what the finished block will look like and look forward to the fresh new learning environment for students and staff.

We can now happily refer to the building work as “Phase 1” of our building project due the fantastic news that our second Condition Improvement Fund bid, to build a new sports hall, has been successful.  The amount of money awarded will not only enable us to build a new sports hall but also create outstanding outdoor facilities such as all weather surfaces for a wide variety of sports.  We have great hopes that we can provide these facilities for the students in our school, where we have always excelled in sport.  In addition, we really want to provide recreation and sporting opportunities for the whole community.  I firmly believe we can have a transformational impact in school and the wider community through this ambitious project.  Watch this space!

Over the Easter break, staff and over 40 students visited Gambia to continue our work on Project Gambia.  Once again, students returned speaking of a life enriching experience.  To benefit so much from the project while providing the gift of educational opportunity to so many Gambian children makes Project Gambia an invaluable aspect of the learning experience at Kinver High.  We are now able to include students from our MAT partner schools in the project.  Students from Crestwood school took part this year and we hope more will do so next time, hopefully with other MAT schools sending students.

On Thursday 25th May, there is a special presentation evening for students to share their experiences of Gambia.  The aim is to raise a further £1500 to enable further building to take place in Gambia before the rainy season begins.  I am so proud that, while we have managed to secure millions of pounds to build great new facilities for our students, they are prepared to raise all they can to help develop education for others.

Another really valuable trip as a learning experience is the London trip for Year 7 students.  This took place over the May Bank Holiday weekend with students touring sites such as St Paul’s Cathedral, Tower Bridge and the Millenium Bridge.  A trip to the Natural History museum was followed by a West End theatre visit to see Aladdin.  Our students really enjoyed this fantastic trip and as ever were highly praised for their excellent behaviour.

As always, I am very grateful to all our willing and supportive staff who give up their free time to arrange and take the students on these trips.  The added educational experiences for students are absolutely priceless.