Another week of public examinations has come to an end. For many in Year 11, they have now completed their GCSEs and they can finally rest after what will have been the most intense period of examinations they have ever faced. Some still have a few more papers to complete but the countdown to the Prom can then begin. We get to the time of year where we start to feel sad as we say goodbye to some in Year 11 and all of Year 13. We wish all our leavers all the best for the future and encourage them to stay in touch and let us know all their exciting news.
Years 7-9 have also had examinations all week and we were pleased with how they have conducted themselves during this time. They have been reminded that this is a time to get into the studying habits and attitudes to encourage success at GCSE in the future and whatever the outcome from the examinations they should reflect and learn from these.
Traffic near the School
The weather this week has been atypical for June and Monday saw heavy downpours during the day. Lovibonds Avenue is always busy at school finishing time, however, the rain usually brings additional traffic. Can I take the opportunity to remind all parents/carers to drive carefully when near the School and to follow the traffic restrictions that are in place. On Monday, the traffic quickly became gridlocked with cars unable to move. Most of our students, even when it is raining hard, should be able to walk home. If, however, you do have to collecting your son or daughter then please do so further along Lovibonds Avenue and not near the school gates. Thank you.
Book Return Day
Your attention is drawn to the emails sent earlier today regarding Book Return Day (26th June) and the Year 11 ceremony that also takes place on this day. Students in Years 7-10 and 12 start at the slightly later time of 9.45am in order to facilitate this day.
Confiscated mobile phones
You will be aware we have a strict No Mobiles policy at Darrick Wood. This is highly effective in ensuring these devices are not a distraction in lessons or around the School. Many other schools are trying to introduce such a policy as there has been research indicating how much of a problem mobiles can be, not least because of the current popularity of social media.
To re-iterate, our policy is that if a phone is seen by a member of staff it must be handed in immediately when requested. It does not have to be used or heard, just seen. Of course, if it is used or heard it will also be confiscated. The phone will be put in a safe place and can only be returned when you, their parent/carer has contacted us to arrange an appointment to meet with the relevant Achievement Coordinator or Assistant Achievement Coordinator. We will give you an appointment as soon as we can. We cannot always facilitate the meeting as per our policy if you just turn up at school. The simplest solution to the issue is that pupils need to abide by the No Mobiles rule. Please ensure your child understands our rules and why we have them.
Use of Social Media
Following on from the mobile phone item above – with increasing frequency we are dealing with problems in relation to children using social media platforms. These can of course be used for many positive things (charity fundraising etc). However, the platforms can also lead to difficulties between groups and individuals that are challenging to solve once negative comments have been posted, completely at odds with our values. Many children are also too young to use the platforms they are accessing. I would ask you to check that your son/daughter is aware of the age restrictions. The restrictions are there for a reason but are often circumvented. For many sites, the minimum age is 13 or 14. Pupils in Years 7 and 8 should therefore not be using some of the most popular social media platforms at this stage.
I would be grateful if you could talk to them about this and for those who continue to use social media, encourage them to use it as a force for good.
On Tuesday, 16th July pupils in Years 7, 8 and 9 will be participating in Sports Day at Norman Park. Parents are reminded to click on the link in the email that was sent. If the link does not work for you, please email the office (firstname.lastname@example.org) to acknowledge receipt which will then be forwarded the PE Department.
The Sports Day email will be re-sent Monday. It only needs to be completed if it has not already been.
Other School events
Wednesday, 19th June 7.00pm – Gifted and Talented Evening
Tuesday, 2nd July 7.00pm – Summer Concert
Wednesday, 10th July 7.00pm – Sports Awards Evening
Monday, 15th July 7.00pm – Dance Production