Parent Bulletin 01/10/21
Attendance at extra-curricular clubs continues to be very high and we have launched a range of new clubs and societies led largely by our Sixth Form students. These include Debate Club, Art Club, Eco Group, Book Club, LGBTQ+ Society, Science Society, Mental Wellbeing Society, and many more are planned. Please encourage your child to get involved with at least one extra-curricular club or society. We are in the process of producing a timetable of what is on for the website to supplement the one for Sport that is already available.
Assemblies this week focused on harvest time but with a difference. Students were ask to consider the food they eat, the distance it travels (food miles) and the interconnectedness of the world they live in. They were also encouraged to think of seeds in a different way, like ideas. Ideas start as small seeds but can grow into amazing things if people are enthused and interested in the idea, the idea on this occasion being related to the aspirations of last weekend’s Global Citizen events (Global Citizen – Join the Movement Changing the World).
Music in assemblies has been of the very highest standard this term. We have had a pianist, a string quintet and this week a wonderful piece on the clarinet. It takes not just many years of dedication to practice, but also great courage to perform in front of your peers. Well done to all of our musicians. They have brightened the start of our mornings, especially today when the rain poured.
On Wednesday evening we were pleased to welcome parents/carers of Year 11 students into school for a presentation in the Main Hall and some workshops. Topics covered included examinations 2022, assessments, an introduction to our Sixth Form, how to help your child revise, drugs and alcohol awareness, online safety and how to support the wellbeing of your child through Year 11. Whilst there still had to be some COVID-19 control measures in place, it was wonderful to see parents/carers in person again for the first time in nearly two years. We hope everyone who attended found it helpful. A copy of the presentation will be sent home.
The very next day news came through that Ofqual had confirmed arrangements for examinations for 2022 and how these will be adapted to take account of the disruption to learning over the past two years. Most of what had been consulted on, as presented in the Main Hall has been accepted and finer details will be communicated by examination boards in due course. It has also been announced that there is a “Plan B”, should it be necessary to again cancel public examinations. Schools will be expected to collect evidence of student’s learning from after half term. We will write to parents of examination year groups soon to explain more about the arrangements for the year ahead. Our advice to students in these year groups is to plan that they will be taking the announced adapted versions of the normal public examinations this summer but also ensure they take all assessments this year seriously in case Plan B becomes necessary. Regardless of what materialises this year in terms of examinations, there are no short cuts to success. Hard work in school and at home are essential. We are here to support them through this and Information Evening for Year 11 was set up to ensure strong partnership with parents/carers during the year ahead.
COVID-19 information page on website
This page on our website has been updated with the latest information parents/carers may need in relation to COVID-19. This includes how parents/carers should report any positive results for their child’s PCR test. There is a separate reporting method for the results (negative, positive or void) for the at home asymptomatic LFD tests and other helpful information. It is important we keep accurate records of these test results as we track cases in school and report to the local authority if cases start to rise.
Please help us keep positive cases low at Darrick Wood by ensuring your child takes an LFD test twice weekly. Also ensure they do not attend school if they have one of the three main symptoms of COVID-19.
News from DWS Audio – Darrick Wood’s very own podcasting service.
Last week saw the launch of our new YouTube channel, which is a dedicated space for weekly episodes of our school-based audio drama, ROUGH DIAMONDS. Each week you can listen to at least one new episode of our drama serial, which is set in a fictional secondary school called Danson Wood High. The characters and storylines have all been created by Darrick Wood students, who have worked really hard on this project. Please feel free to listen and subscribe if you are able to. You can catch the first episode via this link:
In addition to our YouTube Channel, Darrick Wood School also has its own audio blog. This week you can listen to the first of 50 micro dramas recorded by our new Year 7 students during this year’s summer school. These students were absolutely fantastic in rising to the challenge of writing and recording an audio play in less than 90-minutes! We will continue to post more of these each week, so please keep listening. Also on the blog you can catch a new audio play that was written and produced by Tom Cridland, one of our Year 11 students. You can catch all these via this link:
DWS Audio (darrickwood.bromley.sch.uk)
We are, as ever, indebted to the very talented Mr Chappell, Head of Media Studies, for his leadership of these initiatives. We hope you are able to listen and support the work of our students. Happy listening!
This year the NHS are offering a Flu vaccination to all students in Years 7 to 11. Consent will be gathered through an online form which has been sent to parents/carers this week. The deadline for consent is midnight on the 15th October.
Staff Macmillan Coffee Morning
On Friday, 24th September, staff at Darrick Wood took part in the national Macmillan Coffee Morning. Many staff baked and donated cakes. In total £268 was raised for Macmillan Cancer. This is a worthy amount of money raised with many staff also enjoying cake!
Food Bank Fortnight
Leading on from Mr Eynon’ s assembly this week about Harvest, Darrick Wood will be taking part in the Harvest Festival Collection for Bromley Food Bank. In school this will be known as ‘Food Bank Fortnight’. Bromley Food Bank has recently located to a smaller warehouse and therefore we will be asking for donations of specific food items; packet or tinned potatoes (not fresh) and cold meat tins. Donations may be handed into Pupil Reception. The deadline for donations will be the morning of Friday, 15th October. We hope many people across the School will get involved.
Parent Governor nominations
If you are interested in the role of Parent Governor, please see the email sent previously. If you are unsure, but would like to find out more, please contact the School and we would be delighted to talk to you about the role.
This will be held on Monday at the School, although there is also the opportunity to join online if you are unable to come into school. If you would like to attend, please contact the Chair of the PSFA, Emma McGrath on firstname.lastname@example.org. We need to consider numbers ahead of the event so that we can ensure we have a large enough venue whilst still having an element of social distancing available.
Events for your diary
4th October 2021 – PSFA AGM (7pm)
6th October 2021 – Open Evening (4.30-8pm). Further details on school website. Early close on Wednesday (12.30), later start on Thursday (9am).
18th October – 29th October – HALF TERM