My first job in this blog is to offer my profound thanks to Louisa Coleman and Melbryn Kruft-Welton for being our first ever Young Mayor and Deputy, adding my thanks to Bewdley Town Council for being sufficiently progressive to create this opportunity. I am also delighted to congratulate Star Powell and Erin Boddice, for becoming our second Young Mayor and Deputy respectively, at the Town Council ‘Mayor Making’ Meeting on Friday last, 11th May. I am confident that they will both do a wonderful job, as did their predecessors.
I often say a little about recent assemblies in my blogs to reinforce important messages that have been given to students for their parents and families. This half-term’s assemblies focussed on Well-Being and I passed on some useful advice to students about use of social media. The focus of the assembly was a Royal Society for Public Health report, ‘Social media and young people's mental health and wellbeing’, which is also titled ‘#StatusOfMind’ and can be downloaded here
. (Hyperlink is to: https://www.rsph.org.uk/our-work/campaigns/status-of-mind.html
in case it gets broken) This report takes a very interesting look at the effects of social media on young people’s mental health through a research based approach, giving some very useful advice on what the principle issue are with use of the most common social media platforms. My assembly presentation can be found here
(Hyperlink to: http://prezi.com/otlua8v_y79h/?utm_campaign=share&utm_medium=copy&rc=ex0share
It is now that time of year when exams are underway and we start to think about plans for next year. I would like to weave this into the activity of our Parents’ Association, which I would like to invite all parents and local businesses to become involved with, in supporting the future growth and development of the school. We have a great school in a beautiful site which offers a wonderful education to the children of Bewdley as they mature into Young Adults, and begin to make their own way in the world. However, the demands of the wider curriculum move on, and in these times of restrained public spending, we have an urgent need to update and upgrade some of our facilities.
Our Sixth Form block was built at a time when small classes of a handful of students were the norm at A Level, and the range of small rooms we have reflects this. With expectations now of classes of fifteen or more, these facilities no longer meet the needs of the Sixth Form Curriculum.
The need for access to high quality and up-to-date computers expands across the curriculum on almost a daily basis. We have three main computer suites, located in B block which is the oldest part of the school, within the original school building. Whilst we have done our best to bring these networks up to date, for a school of our size we need a fourth computer room and rooms which are more appropriately laid out for the teaching of computer science, creative media and business.
We have two Drama teaching rooms. They are located at opposite ends of the school, making collaborative teaching and planning almost impossible. Similarly we have a Music teaching room and suite of practice rooms at one end of the school and the Music Technology room in the centre of the school, next to PE (which does not have a teaching room despite teaching GCSE and A Level). One of the two Drama rooms is the Activity Studio which is one of the few large spaces in the school, so this being a permanent teaching room limits its availability.
All of these issues are solvable through implementation of our Infrastructure Plan (attached), the only thing preventing it being funding. The Local Authority only has capital project funds available for additional school places or basic building maintenance, which means that the only way we can make a plan such as this happen is if we can generate funding from alternative sources. I am asking our Parents’ Association to help us with this. If you would like to offer practical support in making the school a better place to learn and work, please come to our Parents’ Association meeting next Thursday, 24 May at 7PM. The meeting will begin with a walk of the building and a discussion of these plans, followed by a strategic action planning session.
Thank you in anticipation of your support and I look forward to seeing you there.