Subject: Samuel Whitbread Academy E-Newsletter Issue 103 (04/10/19)

Samuel Whitbread Academy 
Issue 103 (04/10/19)

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Dear Parents and Carers,

October is here and we’re already five weeks into the first term and only two weeks away from the half term break.

In the last two weeks we have had two fantastic open evenings for Year 8 students who are deciding which school they want to go to. As well as three presentations in the hall, we had displays and activities in every department area. The feedback from parents was incredibly positive; with several of them commenting on how dedicated our staff are and how passionate they are about their subjects. But by far the biggest compliment this year, as with every year, goes to our students - who were simply amazing. It's so great to see how proud they are of their school and how eager they are to share it with the younger students and their families.

The monitors for the new computer room in the Sixth Form block have arrived and it's starting to take shape. The room will have 40 desktop PCs and be a quiet working space for Sixth Form students. We have also purchased some new furniture for the new Sixth Form study centre which can accommodate around 100 students and will soon have a cabinet of chrome books for students to use during their independent study time. We are having a big push on independent study time this year at SWA - teachers will be setting students more work to do in their spare time and keeping parents informed if work isn't completed on time or to the right standard.

Auditions are open for this year’s production of Aladdin which is already shaping up to be an amazing production. DofE have also had their first practice expedition to the South Downs with 34 students sleeping under canvas for two nights in preparation for their silver exhibition later this year. Art have also had their first trip this year to the National Portrait Gallery. And last Friday we held a coffee morning for Macmillan and raised £164. We held a staff bake-off as part of the coffee morning, with the challenge of making 12 identical muffins or cupcakes - which was won by Mr Bonham!

PE have made an amazing start to the year with wins for the netball U19 girls, the rugby 1st XV and U15s in their first National Cup matches, the U15 girls footballers, U15 boys footballers and U16 boys footballers in their first outings of the season and the U19 development team in their first two league matches. On top of that, the U14 netballers are unbeaten in both A and B teams and the U16 boys basketballers are four wins from four!

Nick Martin

Year 9
Well done to the Year 9s who continue to impress early on in their Samuel Whitbread careers. Uniform and behaviour on the whole have been excellent and long may this continue. We always like to celebrate successes of the year group, and there have been two really fantastic pieces of positive news in the last couple of weeks involving our students.

Five Year 9 boys ‘played up’ for the Year 10s in the first round of the National Cup this week and were tremendous. Reon Gilbert and Toby Hunt did particularly well, both scoring tries. You can view a video of an immense bit of skill from the boys leading to a try by clicking here.

Scarlett Wallace in 9P has won an award for being part of a foster family 'Special Sons and Daughters', presented to her last week at a ceremony. She is extremely proud of her award and we would like to congratulate her and her family too.

Mr R Sinclair
Year 10
It has been another good two weeks for our Year 10 cohort. We would like to remind students that punctuality will be the year team focus for the last two weeks of this half term. This means students should be making sure they are on time for registration and to lessons, as attendance does affect learning and progress. This Friday is also the deadline for any GCSE option changes. After this time we will not be able to make any further adaptions. But by this point it does seem that all of our Year 10s have settled into their new option choices. We are also extremely pleased with the praise points the cohort have received so far this term – over 1500 points which is absolutely brilliant! Keep up the fantastic work Year 10!

Miss V Yadav
Year 11
Year 11 students engaged with a revision assembly led by Mr Butler last week to help them prepare for the GCSE mock exams which begin W/C 25th November. Students have responded well to this and are aware that they should be revising little and often, ensuring that they follow a structured revision schedule. In order to support the students with this, we are running a series of activities in tutor time as well as revision workshops in the run up to these mock exams. We will also be running a revision workshop for parents in line with the Sixth Form Open Evening after half term; more details will be given closer to the time. As well as this, all relevant texts to support students with their revision can be found on the website under the learning tab. I am convinced that the positive manner in which the year has started will bring great success to all of Year 11 moving forward.

Miss C Tabert

Sixth Form
Our Year 12 students have made a fantastic start to the year. Students are well underway with their studies and we have been particularly pleased with how they have used their independent time to study. The study spaces are due to be upgraded with new computers which will allow students to make even better use of their time and our facilities. We have rolled out a new programme that aims to get our Year 12 students supporting our younger students in lessons. All students in Year 12 have been asked to spend one hour a fortnight in a Year 9, 10 or 11 lesson of their choice. We are really encouraged by the manner our Year 12s have approached this initiative and we are sure that it will be of benefit to them and the wider school community. Teachers are currently assessing all Year 12 students, with a report due to be sent to parents before half term. Their attitude to learning both in and out of the classroom will be reported on, but no predicted grades will be formed at this early stage. Students and parents should check their email on Thursday 10th October to see this report.

We are looking forward to seeing all parents and carers at the Year 13 subject PRE on Tuesday 8th October. Their most recent reports were sent home on Thursday morning via parent and student email. Students must have conversations at their subject appointments about how to make more progress, and the support and guidance they can have from teachers. We are now into the swing of university applications for the coming year, and students should be making good progress on their personal statements and choices of university and course. We are also providing support for alternatives to UCAS through workshops and careers appointments. Careers appointments can be booked through the parents evening booking system, and parents do not have to attend. Thank you to those students who are punctual and well presented each day – and thank you to the multitude of students who gave up their time to guide and help during our recent Open Evenings.

Mr Tonking, Mrs Hoad and Mr Huckle
Dan Hoath in Year 12 is celebrating a remarkable achievement after becoming six-time National Kite Champion this year. Dan won competitions at Dunstable Downs and Pontefract Racecourse and also travelled to the Netherlands to compete in a European competition. He has won six golds in the single, pair and quads disciplines and only just missed out on a clean sweep, coming second in a seventh category. Dan and his team are now preparing for the Kiting World Cup in April in France.
Work Experience
At the Year 12 Induction Day, students were given information about their work experience this year and the paperwork that they need to complete. This has been resent out to them this week via email and they will have a refresher assembly during this half term. The parent consent letter is due in on the 31st October and should be handed in to Mrs McMillan in room 902. We have informed students that they should apply for placements sooner rather than later as work experience with larger companies and more popular places of work go very quickly now that the majority of schools are offering this. We have given students a final deadline of 28th February 2020 for work experience placement forms to be handed in so we have time to process them and contact the companies for all of the additional information that we need. If you have any questions or queries about work experience, please don't hesitate to contact Mrs Jackman ( or Mrs McMillan, the Careers Administrator (
Macmillan Coffee Morning
Last Friday, 10H and 10K tutor groups helped to raise £164 for MacMillan Cancer Support as part of the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning, selling cakes to students and tea and coffee to staff. The staff also had a bake-off competition won by Mr Bonham!
Art Trip
Year 12 & 13 Art students had a wonderful time at the National Gallery this week and Tate Britain to see some classical pieces of fine art to enhance their contextual studies.
Silver DofE
Next week students and staff from SWA travel to the Peak District for their assessed expedition weekend. 34 students from Year 11 will be attending, the weather in the Peak District does not look promising so wish them luck! In September the same group carried out their practice expedition in the South Downs in and around Alfriston. All students worked extremely hard and were amazing – they showed a tremendous strength of spirit and camaraderie to get through the four days.
Performing Arts
Tickets are now available for this year's pantomime Aladdin and the Christmas Concert. Tickets can be purchased here:
Lecture Series
Several lectures have been arranged for Sixth Form students on a range of different topics delivered by staff and guest lecturers. These will run throughout the Autumn term.
NHS Wellbeing Events
Please click here to find out more about upcoming events supporting people their mental health run by the NHS.

Sports News in Brief
The boys U16 basketballers continue to go from strength to strength and are well set to win the league and challenge for the county title, as they extended their winning streak to four games. In the toughest match of the season so far, they overcame a strong Mark Rutherford side 62-52 and last night beat Biddenham 41-35 despite playing much of the game with a man down. The U15s boys footballers started their National Cup run with an excellent 3-0 victory over Stratton Upper, Perkins, Brown and Playford with the goals and Jack Barker man of the match. In individual successes, Year 12 student Dan Hoath has had an incredible year as six-time national champion in kiting (read more above in 'Academy News' section. Adam Paige-Brown (Year 10) has been selected for the Bedfordshire Hockey Academy, ex-student Connor Hudson recently became British 4X Series Champion and finally well done to Gracie Wall in Year 9 who achieved a PB in the multi-event athletics finals in Exeter last weekend.
This week the U14 A team played a thrilling game against Bedford Modern in the County League. The game was incredibly close until the last few minutes of the game when the girls just capitalised on the BMS mistakes to win 12-8 in extremely wet and challenging conditions. This followed a 14-1 victory over Harlington to give the girls an excellent start to the season. The B team also had great success with 7-4 wins over both Etonbury and Bedford Girls School 'B' team. Well done girls - keep up the great work!

The U19 girls had their first AOC British Colleges League netball match against the very strong and established St Josephs side from Ipswich. The SWA girls were confident and composed from the warm up and simply played excellent, clinical netball. Despite some errors and some missed shots we ran away with the game in the third quarter, finishing as 51-38 winners. All the girls played and loved their first run out together as a squad. A short video of some of the excellent play leading up to one of the Whitbread goals can be seen by clicking 
The 1st XI and Development XI football boys have started their AOC British Colleges League seasons very positively. With it being their first season in the competition and the vast majority of the boys playing as Year 12s in a Year 13 league, it was always going to be a tough ask, but both teams have aquitted themselves extremely well. The 1st XI, playing their first two games in the Championship away to last year’s champions EDSV and last year’s third placed F2 Academy, have been incredibly close to causing upsets in both, losing out 1-0 and 2-1 respectively. Performances bode well for upcoming games as the boys get stronger and begin to bond as a unit. The Development XI, playing in the Regional Division, have had an amazing start, winning both games 2-1, first against Central Bedfordshire College and then St Neots Sixth Form 1st XI. There have been notable performances from Harry Butler, Max Whittaker-Mead, Sam Gifford and Amechi Okafor.
The very talented U15 girls made a rocketing start to their season, beating Mark Rutherford 17-0 with a double hat-trick from Year 9 Aimee Loran. Well done girls, we look forward to a successful season!
The 1st XV made the long trip to Brighton on Wednesday to play Newman Trailfinders in their first league game of the season, as tough a start as possible with the opposition being last year’s national league champions. Whitbread made a fantastic, quick start with some brilliant running rugby early on, taking a 14-0 lead. Momentum started to swing in the home team’s favour with a few penalties and some strong physical attacking either side of half time, turning the game on its head to lead 23-14. A Whitbread put us within one score of victory and, with five minutes to go, Tom Litchfield made a mesmeric run to score a converted try. Whitbread soaked up the seemingly endless pressure for the final plays of the game before the final whistle went and capped a brilliant 24-23 win. There were notable outstanding performances from Litchfield, Theo Ogonah and Toby Wiggett but man of the match went to Harry Jarvis.

The U15 boys had an incredible first match in the National Cup, beating Aylesbury Grammar 19-15 in a hard-fought contest. The opposition, who were unbeaten throughout the whole of last year, were torn apart by first half tries from Reon Gilbert, Toby Hunt and Max St. Leger. With five Year 9 boys playing in the side, the Whitbread boys stayed strong despite an Aylesbury second half comeback to see it through to round 2.
The U14 rugby boys played last week against Biddenham in a match with fantastic spirit which showed some of the core values of sport. With several Biddenham boys playing their first game of rugby and not having the numbers for a full side, several Whitbread boys donned the blue and red of Biddenham to help the opposition and complete an excellent, enjoyable game of rugby.

Show my Homework
We an online system for setting homework. The site is called 'Show My Homework' and can be accessed here. All pupils have been given a username and password for parents and carers, so you can monitor the work being set and the quality of the homework being completed by your children. Please follow the link if you wish to know more about the website and the functions it has to offer parents and carers.
Is your Child using their
entitlement to Free School Meals?
If your child is already receiving Free School Meals please remind them that they are entitled to £2.20 per day. It is advised that they use this amount at lunch time when they will get the best deal for their money. If the amount is not used it is not carried over to the next day, it will be removed and £2.20 will be credited to the account on a daily basis.

If there are any problems using the Biometric Finger Print System please speak to one of kitchen staff either behind the counter or in the office. If your child feels uncomfortable approaching the kitchen staff then please go to the year team pastoral officer.

Please be aware that the process for using the biometric finger print is exactly the same for children using free school meals or paying for school meals.

School Closure Arrangements due to Severe Weather
Please find information below from Central Bedfordshire Council for parents/carers to register to receive school closure alerts:
In order to receive an e-mail alert via the Central Bedfordshire Schools’ Open Status (SOS) system, you will need to register:
• Click here 
• Click on 'register for updates' and fill in the text boxes
• Click on 'submit' You will then receive an email which contains instructions on how to 'activate' your account which will include a 'one off' activation code.
• Click here
• Go to 'Log in to edit your details' and type in your email address and the activation code.
• The next time you want to edit your details (e.g. change the names of schools you wish to receive alerts for) type in your email address and password.
Please do not try to ring radio stations to find out if schools will be closed. Telephone lines will be busy and this may prevent a vital call reaching the News Centre. Please listen to the radio or access the website for confirmation.
If you have an existing account but have lost your login details please send an e-mail to to have your details refreshed.
For further information, please click here (APPENDIX C S)   

Free School Meals
- Are you Entitled?
If you would like to find out if you are entitled for your child to receive Free School Meals please contact Customer Services at Central Bedfordshire on 0300 300 8306. Please have the following information ready: national insurance numbers and dates of birth for you and your partner, dates of birth for your children, and if you receive support from the National Asylum Support Service, your NASS number. You may qualify if your child attends a school full time in the Central Bedfordshire area, and you get any of the following: Income Support, Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, The Guarantee element of State Pension Credit, Support from the National Asylum Support Service, Child Tax Credit (but not Working Tax Credit) and you have an annual income that does not exceed £16,190.

If you do not live in Central Bedfordshire area but your child attends a school in Central Bedfordshire full time, then you should apply to Central Bedfordshire Council, on 0300 300 8306. You will be informed if you are entitled to free school meals when you telephone, any problems verifying the entitlement will be discussed during the call. Please be advised that you can only apply for Free School Meals through Central Bedfordshire, Samuel Whitbread cannot process the application.
Young Carers
Our website now has links to organisations that offer advice and support for all the family along with young carers chat forums . Also you will find application forms for grants along with guidelines to help in making it easier to access any financial support you may need.
Pupil Premium
You may have received an email from us recently about the Pupil Premium funding that we have available to support some of our students. There is an application form on our website that you can use to request any support from the school - click here to see. All application forms or any requests for further information should be sent to

SEND Information Sessions
Free drop in information sessions are available for parents/carers with children with SEND. Click here to read more information.
Service Families
Samuel Whitbread is committed to supporting our service families. If you think you are going to be posted please contact Thomas Rowell ( so that he can help your child's transition go as smoothly as possible. We understand your circumstances might change again and that's OK. Kelly Furphy will also assist in any transition procedure and documentation needed.
Career information, advice and guidance support
The 4YPUK Careers Adviser Rose Birmingham is available for 1:1 appointments to talk though options and career ideas (or lack of ideas!) including apprenticeships, college courses, employment, training etc. To book an appointment visit: . Appointments are held in in Room 910 (Library).

More information and support can be found here on our website.
Brook Appointments
Brook appointments can be made via the Medical Room to speak to someone on a Thursday. Students can seek advice on issues such as online safety, healthy relationships, LGBT diversity, puberty, self esteem and many more.
Adopted Children
If your child is adopted from care, under a special guardianship order or a residency order, we can claim extra funding from the government to support them in their progress at school. The funding is part of the Pupil Premium Grant and we can use it for all sorts of support from 1:1 tutoring to help with equipment, revision guides and trips.

Please let Mr. Rowell if you think your child may be eligible for this support. Email:

Safeguarding Team
We take the safeguarding of our students very seriously at SWA and the safety and protection of our students is paramount in all that we do on a day to day basis. Mark Gibbs, Associate Principal, is the Designated Safeguarding Lead at the Academy.

The team which includes Clare Hood, Associate Principal, Clare Bonham PSO Sixth Form, Jo Abbott PSO Year 9, Tanya Clark PSO Year 11, Thomas Rowell SENCO, Julie Saggers PSO Year 10, Vishali Yadav Head of Year 9 and Richard Sinclair Head of Year 11 are always willing to support and give advice.

If you do have any concerns about any of the students about their safety please contact a member of the Safeguarding team to discuss your concerns or contact The Central Bedfordshire HUB on 0300 300 8585 or if you live in Bedford Borough please call 01234 718700.





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Samuel Whitbread Academy

Samuel Whitbread Academy has changed bank accounts. Could you please advise parents that all future cheque payments for school trips should be made payable to: Samuel Whitbread Academy – School Fund.
Signing In/Out
Following the installation of gates, students will only be able to enter and leave the school via reception. If your child needs to sign out during the school day, please make a note in their planner.  This will enable them to leave their lesson if necessary and sign out at reception ready to be collected.

All parents need to sign in at reception whenever they visit the site.
We would like to remind Parents and Carers of the regulations regarding holidays and would like to make you aware that Best Term dates may differ from the term dates published on the Central Bedfordshire website. Please see our website 
The Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations 2006 and Central Bedfordshire advise that unless special circumstances* are identified then term time holidays should not be authorised. 

Absence Request Forms can be collected from the Attendance Office (Room 337).
If you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact Mrs A Martin – 01462 628041 or 
Samuel Whitbread Academy E-Newsletter

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Samuel Whitbread Academy
Shefford Road, Clifton, Shefford, Bedfordshire, SG17 5QS
Tel: 01462 629900
Fax: 01462 629901

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