Each week, in staff briefing, a member of staff shares a good idea related to teaching and learning - sometimes just a tip to help others, sometimes a major new idea.  On Friday this week Miss Mayor, Head of Opening Minds, was sharing how that team encourage students to take risks in their learning.  It struck me how important this is - none of us succeed in life first time, but if we are too frightened of failure to even try then we will miss out on much that life has to offer.  This applies to life outside school, as well as to learning within school.  We must continue to encourage our students to try new things, be prepared to fail, to learn from that experience and use it to move forward.  Resilience, strength and courage - key attributes of successful people and key characteristics of our young people that we will continue to develop at Walton-le-Dale.

A few regular updates:

  • Parking - many thanks to everyone who now parks further away from the front of school.  The situation has improved a bit since the start of the year.  Please can I continue to encourage those who pick up your young people by car to keep the area at the front of school clear on both sides of the road in the interests of the safety of everyone's children.
  • Phones - for some unknown reason we appear to have had a few issues with students getting phones out inside the buildings or outside between lessons.  We are quite lenient compared to most schools as we believe that the sensible use of mobile phones is a life skill.  We allow phones to be used outside the school buildings at break and lunchtime - most schools do not permit them to be seen at all.  Our policy is on the website and the basic principles have not changed in many years. Please help us by reinforcing this message with your son or daughter.
  • Attitude to Learning - all our internal research shows that students who have a positive attitude to their learning succeed in school and get good results.  This seems obvious so please work with us in encouraging your son or daughter to have a positive attitude to their learning - this links to my comments at the start of this update about risk-taking.  I appreciate that this is sometimes challenging (!) so please contact your child's Progress Co-ordinator if there are specific issues that you wish to discuss.
  • Homework - I am reviewing and monitoring the setting and completion of homework at the moment so please contact me if there is anything that you wish to raise about homework related to your son or daughter.  Independent learning outside of lessons is a really important element in the success of our students. 

Upcoming events - please keep an eye on the calendar

  • INSET Day (school closed for staff training) - Friday 25th Jan (THIS FRIDAY)
  • Year 11 Parents' Evening - Wednesday 6th Feb - letters were issued this week
  • Enrichment Day 3 - Thursday 7th Feb
  • Year 9 Options Evening and Parents' Evening - Wednesday 13th Feb

 

Have a good week....

James Harris

Headteacher