Subject: Samuel Whitbread Academy | E-Newsletter Issue 60 (08/03/17))

Samuel Whitbread Academy 
Issue 60 (08/03/17)

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Dear Parents and Carers,

The Year 11 students had their final mock exams last week and I'm pleased to say that the exam team said their behaviour was exemplary. It's clear to everyone that the Year 11s are extremely focused and determined to achieve their best, which is great to see. In a school as big as SWA, it takes an enormous amount of work to organise exams, even mock exams, and it's a real team effort with site agents, the exam team and our army of invigilators all working together seamlessly - and I'd like to thank them all for their hard work. 
On Friday, several students took part in the Great British Spring Clean-up. One team went to the Millennium Park in Shefford and a second team cleaned outside of school grounds. They collected several bags of rubbish, including half a children’s scooter!
The second of the ski trips returned safely at the weekend after another fantastic week of glorious sunshine. Thank you to all staff and volunteers – particularly Mr Edwards for organising such a successful trip. There was also success in engineering this week with four Sixth Form students retaining the Rotary Technology Tournament award in Stopsley.
Performing Arts are on the crest of a wave at the moment. After an amazing run of shows of 'A Night at the Musicals', which were outstanding and incredibly well received – the various SWA choirs followed up with two second places and two first places at the Bedfordshire Music Festival on Saturday. Miss Talbert was over the moon and clearly very proud of all the students involved. 
The PE department have been busy over the past two weeks with a whole host of fixtures across various sports, alongside the GCSE PE practical exams which are in full flow this week. Highlights include the boys U15 handball team being crowned county champions as well as wins for the boys hockey team and footballers in Year 9, 10 and 11.

Nick Martin
Year 10
Dear parents,
We are now past the halfway point of the year and, as ever, time is moving very quickly. The Year 10 Progress Review Evening is just over two weeks away, on 23rd of March. Appointments will fill very quickly and I recommend that you book yours in plenty of time. I will personally be seeing the pupils whom I teach but will try and make myself available at different points throughout the evening. If you have anything you wish to discuss with me I would advise that you call reception to make an appointment on a separate day to avoid disappointment.

As always, I thank you for the continued support with attendance and uniform.

Mr R Sinclair
Year 11
Dear parents,
I would like to congratulate Year 11 students who were again exceptional in their conduct during last week’s mock exams. As with every year in the final holiday before exams, students will have access to Easter School in certain subject areas. Timetables are being finalised but provisional dates for this are 5th, 6th, 7th and 10th April. More information will be given to students from their subject teachers and form tutors, and also will be in the next newsletter in two weeks’ time. With only two months left it is important high standards are kept by students so support is greatly appreciated by you in terms of ensuring uniform is correct and attendance levels are high.

Miss N Kelly
Year 12/13
After an amazing round of interviews we are very pleased to announce that Kieran Drakes has been appointed Head Boy, and voting will take place to decide our Head Girl. Over the next two weeks students and staff will be able to vote for their preferred candidate and will be deciding between Molly Searle, Georgina Harbord and Emily Onagoruwa.  These candidates have already started their campaigns and we wish them good luck. Mr Martin, Mr Huckle, Mrs Hoad and Mrs Bonham were very impressed with all the applicants for Head Boy and Girl, and all Deputy positions. Our congratulations go to everyone involved in the process.

Mrs S Hoad

Year 12 PRE will be on 14th March.  Appointments to be made via online parent booking system. The deadline for getting permission slips and payment in for the Higher Ed Fair has been extended to Wednesday 15th March.

Year 13
Mrs Bonham has been chasing up prom deposits. £5 to be paid by the end of March. Prom date is Friday 7th July.
Sainsbury's vouchers
SWA are collecting the Sainsbury’s vouchers again this year - there is a box in reception to drop them off.
Year 9/10 Ski Trip
Last week, 33 students from Years 9 and 10 enjoyed a fantastic week of skiing in Alpe d'Huez, France. Students enjoyed 12 blocks of two hour ski lessons with ESF ski instructors over 6 days and a wide range of evening entertainment that included ice laser tag, bum boarding, karaoke, an ESF ski show, quiz and award nights. All students made excellent progress, five beginners were skiing blue runs by the end of the week and the remaining intermediate and advanced skiers improved their technique both on and off piste. ESF commented that some of the advanced skiers were the best they had seen from the UK. GCSE PE students who chose skiing as an option also had their ski ability assessed and video recorded. There was a good mix of weather including sun, heavy snow and low cloud which gave the students an insight into mountain weather. Thank you to all those who attended and made it such a great trip.
Rotary Technology Tournament
Last Friday, five teams of Design Technology & Engineering students took part in this year’s Rotary Technology Tournament held in Stopsley. Teams were competing against other schools within Central Bedfordshire in three categories; foundation, intermediate and advanced. Although the challenge set was based on the same topic for all three groups, the difficulty of the challenge was altered for each category. All students competed well in their teams, showing excellent teamwork, communication and presentation skills to take on the challenge at hand and come up with a solution to the problem set. The ‘advanced’ team consisting of Hettie Rogers, Emilia de Luca, Cameron Burgess and Aaron Robertson were victorious in their category, bringing home the trophy for the second year running. Congratulations to all those who took part.
School Governors
Would you like a say in key decisions affecting your child’s school and education? Can you commit to approximately 2 evenings per term and the occasional all school (fun) events? Then why not join a thriving school governing board? SWA is looking to appoint people to the team of school governors. or further information or to arrange a visit to the school please contact:
DT&E thank you
Having sent out a communication asking for old petrol mowers we were fortunate to get offers from six people within our community. The mowers are being put to good use for the Year 12 BTEC Engineers as they embark on their unit of work involving dismantling and reassembly of the mechanics involved. Thank you to your continued support with Engineering at SWA.
Question SLT
On 14th of March a meeting will be held in the Theatre at 1:15pm and it is open to anyone. The meeting is an opportunity to question a member of the SWA Senior Leadership Team about school decisions and policies and also suggest improvements to the school. Mr Gibbs will be present to answer any questions students may have. This is a good opportunity for students to have their voice heard. Please contact with any enquires you may have.
Artist of the Month
The Artist of the Month goes to Belle Coleman 12K. The below image is a large, mixed media portrait created using packing paper, pencil and collage. It is a really striking piece when you enter the room, keep up the great work Belle.
A Night at the Movies
Congratulations to all students from across the trust that were involved our annual musical 'A Night at the Movies'. Show week had a fantastic buzz and every student shone on the stage! The audience were extremely responsive each night; with a huge sell out on the final performance on Friday. There were so many fantastic comments from parents, staff and members of the local community of who were impressed with the high standard of talent that we have and how it was such an enjoyable evening. Well done to all the cast and crew involved; many months of hard work came down to an incredible show week - here's to the next performance! To all cast and crew involved; don't forget the celebration evening on Friday 24th March. Email Miss Tabert for more details if needed.
Spring Concert
Tickets are now on sale from the finance office for the Spring Music Concert, Wednesday 29th March 7pm.
Rotary Young Musician of the Year
Congratulations to Harvey Church who performed at the District Final of the Rotary Young Musician of the Year on Sunday. The adjudicators commented on Harvey's excellent technique and his abundance of passion which clearly comes across when he performs.

Well done Harvey!
Battle of the Bands
On Tuesday 21st March, our Academy Band 'Retroplay' will be performing in the County Battle of the Bands competition at the Stables in Wavendon. The students have been working extremely hard to prepare for this event and are very excited to perform on such a professional stage. The music department wants to wish them a big GOOD LUCK!
SWA Choir
Saturday saw SWA’s three choirs competing at the Bedfordshire Music Festival and all students were fantastic ambassadors for the school. ‘SWAcapella’ competed first – they arrange their own music and are entirely student led – and performed incredibly well in securing second place. There was special mention to Harvey who was cited as the next Gareth Malone by the judge! SWA Choir competed later in the day, against Mark Rutherford and Harmony Voices (a selective county choir who have traditionally won most competitions). The choir performed with such energy and received some fabulous comments from the judges and secured a deserving 1st place! Later in the evening our Chamber Choir competed  in two classes. They performed extremely well and secured another first place for SWA! Their final class was also another great performance, securing a second. Well done to all involved in a fantastic series of performances!
U15 Boys Handball
The U15 Boys were victorious in their pursuit of becoming the best side in Bedfordshire. In their first game SWA beat Van Dyke 8-5 as they worked the ball up the court with confidence and created very good goal scoring opportunities which they took full advantage of, with Tom Litchfield a Liam Holland top scoring. Defensively, the boys put in a huge effort, working hard and making regular blocks, with Josh Chew and James Allen working tirelessly as they had the thankless task of pressing. In their second game, it was a similar story, Tom Litchfield again top scoring, with Josh Chew and James Allen scoring some very good individual efforts as they secured the title.
Yesterday the Year 9 boys badminton squad attended the All England Open at the Barclaycard Arena. This is the third largest tournament in the world behind the Olympics and World Championships. The boys had a great day watching the world’s best players and cheering on the English and Scottish team members. All students were exceptional and great ambassadors for the school. Let’s hope these boys were inspired by the talents on show and will push themselves to reach these heights.
U16 Boys Hockey
The boys travelled to Biddenham for their latest league game. They played very well, moving the ball quickly around the pitch, creating plenty of opportunities. As they opened the scoring through Jamie Parkes, goalkeeper Charlie Garwood went down injured, meaning we had to play a man down, with Callum Wood filling in as a kicking back (outfield player with goalkeeping privileges). As the game went on, the team grew in strength and SWA ran out 8-0 winners, with Liam Stevens, Luke Breacher and Jamie Parkes scoring the majority of the goals. Callum Wood was called into action a couple of times as he improvised brilliantly to make saves from the Biddenham forwards.
U14 Basketball
Last Monday, both boys and girls U14 basketball squads travelled to the Regional Finals to take on some of the best teams in the country. The girls travelled to Greensward Academy in Essex and came up against an incredibly strong side that played some excellent basketball. The girls dug in and their performance improved with each quarter played as they showed more confidence on the ball and created some good scoring opportunities. MVP was Emma Moore who worked tirelessly to keep Greensward’s score as low as possible and top scored as she drove at the basket with purpose to keep the Whitbread score ticking over. It was a similar story for the boys who travelled to Queens School in Watford. Despite the opposition being strong, quick and technically brilliant in securing victory, SWA were determined to show their ability and Lewis Smart and Ben Stevens in particular were excellent.
U18 Rugby
On Wednesday the 1st XV rugby team travelled to Hills Road Sixth Form College for a friendly game. The game was extremely close the whole way through and with an exciting finish it ended 10-10.   With torrential rain and a boggy pitch it was never going to be a spectacle but the boys battled hard to come back from 10-3 down to score in the last play of the game. The early exchanges of the match became a physical battle with neither team being able to handle the slippery ball, SWA eventually forced themselves into the opposition 22 and got a penalty right in front of the posts. The game continued with Hills Road fighting back and eventually scored a couple of well worked tries but were unable to convert which took the game to 10-3.  With a nervous finish, Sean Judge managed to muscle his way, after a series of “pick and goes”, over the line to score right in the corner. Lucas Town had the last kick of the game, a very difficult conversion attempt, and incredibly slotted it to give the game the dramatic finish it deserved.
U14 Football
The A team football boys began their District League season with victory at Mark Rutherford.  A tough first half coupled with a poor performance from SWA left the side 1-0 down at half time.  However the team turned it around in the second half, to dominate the match and win 3-1.  Goals came from Harry Butler, Josh Eytle & Matt Moloney.
With a strong squad the Year 9 ‘B’ team turned in a 3-1 victory against Robert Bloomfield Academy last week. The boys started a little slow and struggled to get the ball down and play, however towards the end of the first half the lads grew in confidence and started to get on top. With a few chances that fell to Max Whitaker-Mead, SWA started to look threatening, the first goal came from a lovely through ball played by Charlie Robinson and finished off by Max Whittaker-Mead. Bloomfield managed to score an equaliser which then influenced the boys to step up their game, the second came from once again Max who slotted the ball into the bottom corner calmly and the third fell to Fred Steer who was on the edge of the box and was able to strike the ball cleanly into the back of the net! Some excellent football played by the boys throughout, well done.
U16 Boys Football
Last week the U16 boys travelled to Redborne for a tough opening District League game against a side that have had a good National Cup run this year. The boys played outstandingly, dictating the speed and direction of play, creating some excellent chances. Alex Moore opened the scoring with a powerful header into the roof of the net from a corner, only for Redborne to draw level early in the second half. Sam King showed great composure to bring the ball down before calmly slotting the ball into the side netting to make it 2-1 and Nathan Cowan made some excellent saves to keep Redborne at bay, but excruciatingly the opposition scored in the last minute from a corner to make it 2-2.
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.
Transfer to Upper School
September 2016
All the information you need for the transfer can be found on the Central Bedfordshire Web page, here. Or you can contact the admissions team on: 0300 300 8037 or by e-mail 

Should you need any further information please e-mail Kelly Furphy on
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.
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:

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.
Drop in Sessions
Drop in sessions with the school nurse are available every Thursday breaktime in room 403. If students have any issues ranging from diet to bullying they can book an appointment with the nurse by visiting Mrs Ward in the First Aid room.
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 Bonham PSO Sixth Form, Jo Abbott PSO year 10, Oliver Daniels Head of Year 9, Thomas Rowell SENCO, Julie Saggers PSO Year 11 and Richard Sinclair Head of Year 10 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.
Samuel Whitbread is always looking for ways to support our students and keep parents informed of the latest issues and concerns that are facing our students. We are registered with Parent Info and this can be reached through an icon on the school website.
Parent Info provides high quality information for parents and carers about their children's wellbeing and resilience. The service is free and offers advice and guidance on a wide range of subject matter, from difficult topics about sex, relationships, the internet, body image and peer pressure to broader parenting  topics like ‘how much sleep do teenagers need?’ In line with CEOP’s Thinkuknow programme (also on the school website), some of the content covers Internet safety, but it all starts from the assumption that young people make little distinction between their online and offline lives and the issues for parents are often the same. The aim is to help parents help their children be discriminating, web-literate and resilient.
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




Film & Media

Health & Social Care


Signing In/Out
Students must sign in at the Attendance Office if they arrive late or sign out/in if they leave/return during the Academy day. Please ensure that students have written permission enabling them to sign out.

Please note that the Attendance Office has moved to Room 337.

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. 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. *Special circumstances are defined as:

‘For service personnel and other employees prevented from taking holidays outside term-time if the holiday will have minimal disruption to the pupil’s education’ and ‘when the family needs to spend more time together to support each other after a crisis.’

These changes aim to minimise the impact of absence during the school year.

Holiday 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 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.
Samuel Whitbread Academy E-Newsletter

You are receiving this because you are a Student, 
Parent, Carer, Governor or Member of Staff at SWA. 

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