Subject: Samuel Whitbread Academy E-Newsletter Issue 70 (19/10/17)

Samuel Whitbread Academy 
Issue 70 (19/10/17)

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Dear Parents and Carers,

It’s hard to believe we are already halfway through the Autumn term.

I’m pleased to say that the Year 9 students have impressed everyone with their commitment and attitude to learning, and have settled in incredibly well to the culture and ethos of the school.
We have also had two extremely popular open evenings and hosted more tours during the school day than ever before. It’s fantastic to see how proud our students are of their school and numerous comments from prospective parents praised our students for their confidence, maturity and enthusiasm. 
This week we had a film company in for two days to make a promotional video for the Sixth Form. Each of the mini videos are designed to celebrate the amazing talents of all our students and I’m really looking forward to seeing the results. 
A couple of weeks ago we had our annual Challenge Partners review. The team of six reviewers included an Ofsted inspector, three senior leaders from other schools, a director from a Multi-Academy Trust and a director from Challenge Partners. After three days of lesson observations, interviews, book scrutiny and learning walks, the team agreed with our self evaluation that SWA is a Good school and is improving at Outstanding rate. This was a fantastic endorsement of everything we are trying to do at SWA and the improvements we have made.
There has been a fabulous atmosphere on the football field and the netball court this week as students have engaged in the first of the House sports competitions this academic year. The House system is growing in stature every year and it was fantastic to see so many students involved and enjoying themselves whilst competing for their houses. We also had a non-uniform day today and raised over a £1000 for the house charities as well Jambo, the school in Kenya that we have supported for a number of years. Students are also busily collecting items for this year’s Rotary club shoe box appeal. 

The rehearsals for this year’s BEST production are going well and tickets are selling fast, so please book early to avoid disappointment (see link below)!

Finally, thank you to Jamie Hewitson (Year 9) for providing us with the photograph of Tuesday's amazing sky for this week's banner.

Nick Martin

Year 9
Dear parents,
After the completion of what has been a very busy first half term at Samuel Whitbread I would personally like to pass on my thanks for your support in helping our fantastic Year 9’s. The students have thrown themselves into extra-curricular clubs and activities in a huge way and have embraced so many of the opportunities offered at Samuel Whitbread Academy. We have had a very good response to the Engineering STEM Day in which the students conducted themselves brilliantly, the sports teams have been excellent representing themselves and the Academy in the best light and being successful and with many Year 9 students involved with this year’s pantomime, I look forward to watching those performing! We do have ‘Meet the Tutor’ afternoon happening on 14th November alongside GCSE options Information Evening – please make sure you book your appointments – letters have been sent home. All of the great things that the year group are doing can be seen on the @SWAclassof20 Twitter page, please follow us!

Miss E Wisson
Year 10
We have been impressed with the start Year 10s have made to the year. Uniform in the vast majority of cases is exemplary, attitude to learning in class is very good and an excellent attendance record has meant progress being made in lessons is substantial. Students’ progress reports were published yesterday, which included predicted and attitude to learning grades for each subject. We encourage parents to have constructive conversations with their son/daughter about the report and for students to use half term to reflect on the start to their GCSE subjects. Pupils are working hard with tutors and teaching staff to plan steps to improve in specific subject areas. All marks are linked to the 9-1 scale and interventions will be put in place to improve attitude to learning in some cases.

Miss C Hood & Mr R Candlin
Year 11
Dear Parents,
We have now come to the end of the first half term. Overall, I have seen a year group who are motivated, proactive, smart, mature and polite.

Some important dates for the early part of next term are as follows:
November 21st - Tutor Progress Review Evening. 
November 27th - Mock Examinations start. This will be a period of two weeks of formal mock exams.

Please encourage your children to have a good balance of rest and revision during the half term break.

Mr R Sinclair
Sixth Form
Thank you to all the parents and students who attended our Year 13 Subject PRE last week. Lots of useful conversations about independent study, revision for mocks and future steps.

This half term we have already sent 17 UCAS applications, including four medicine applications and 12 for Oxford or Cambridge. It's a real privilege to read the personal statements of our students, who are doing so much to help our school and local community. We are looking forward to sending many more applications before Christmas.

Mr L Huckle & Mrs S Hoad
A student’s view on… university applications
As the UCAS deadline for aspiring university applicants grows closer, the inevitable excitement for a new chapter of life has began.
By 15th January 2018 the UCAS process for most students, apart from those aspiring to study art and design courses, will be almost over as universities decide on their offers. Naturally, it is a stressful time determining your future, exemplified by the need to conclude a firm and insurance choice in the coming months.

When considering applying for university, many sixth form students are finding themselves worried about the growing tuition fees, and the debt they will be left with after their degree. Thus, the appeal of apprenticeships is increasing, and it is consequently important to consider every option.

Arguably, students can succumb to the pressures of  going to university without exploring alternative paths which may suit them more, and allow them to excel in certain areas.  The importance of making the right choice for you personally is the underlying necessity, and working hard to achieve the grades to fulfill future ambitions is essential.

Victoria Sales 13K

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.

Annual Careers Convention
Samuel Whitbread Careers Convention is being held on Tuesday 21st November. All students/parents are welcome to attend. We have exhibitors from local/national companies, colleges, universities, training providers, support groups in attendance – a full list will be issued early November.
If you work within an organisation that would like to exhibit please contact Debbie Hill: for more information.

Maths House Competition
We had our largest entry yet with 474 students participating in the Autumn competition which showed a fantastic effort on behalf of both staff and students. 
The problem set to the students was as follows: "An outside theatre is in the shape of a regular pentagon with the stage in the centre. The seats are banked up on all 5 sides with 40 seats in the top row of each side.  There are 10 levels, each level having 3 less seats in each section than the one above.
How many seats are there altogether?"
The correct answer was 1325.
Star Prize was awarded to Connie Randall 10R, with runners up prizes to Charles Mills-le-Cren, Lucy Menheneott, Sydney Houghton and Olivia Coughlan.
Performing Arts
Tickets for December's panto are selling quickly. Early bird discount tickets are still available online here and from the finance office until November.
Silver DofE Award 2017-2018 @SamWhitDofE
Last weekend students and Staff from SWA travelled to The Peak District for the assessed expedition weekend. 25 students from Year 11 attended and despite the weather in Bedfordshire being amazing, the Peak District was very different. It was heavy going and very damp.  All the students worked extremely hard and were amazing; they showed a tremendous strength of spirit and camaraderie to get through the weekend.
Yesterday he drama department took the Year 11 GCSE drama students to see A Woman in Black in London. The students had a fantastic time and were extremely well behaved. The trip was topped off when Miss Tabert managed to get the leading man James Byng onto the coach for a photo.
Young Engineers
Year 9 Young Engineers attended a presentation from Lockheed Martin who are sponsoring the school to take part in this year’s VEX Robotic Challenge. Students will be building and programming robots to compete against other schools in the region. The challenge is international with schools around the world coming together for the finals having competed in regional and national finals. Students will be working on this programme until March when the competition starts. A huge thank you to Lockheed Martin for giving our students this amazing opportunity. A video of the competition can be found here.
Artist in Residence
This term Kirsty Badham, professional ceramicist, will be on hand to help the students with their ceramic projects. She  is currently working in the ceramics room, using the potters wheel and the art students have been fascinated to watch her in action. You can see her work on We are lucky to have her working with us this year.
After several months and a few races under our belts the team headed off to the Greenpower F24 finals held at Rockingham on the 8th November. The forecast was looking good and the team was raring to go. The finals consisted of 74 competitors for the under 16’s and 32 competitors for the over 16’s including graduates and apprentices from corporate companies from around the world. The atmosphere was buzzing with all the teams getting to work. Following the practice session the 1st race began, Scooby and Scooby Too had no technical issues and the race ended with us in 11th for Scooby and 20th for Scooby Too. Onto the 24+ race, with our 6th formers going up against much older team members they came in a respectable Scooby Too 15th and Scooby 18th. So onto the final race, by which time the cars had gone through their paces, Scooby Too kept on going and finished in 17th place with Scooby a few cars behind. Congratulations to the team that has represented SWA this year. Special thanks to our sponsors this year: Bosch-Rexroth, FB Chain, MJ Hillson and JK Engineering. A short video of the final can be seen here.

Mr Rayner, Mr Chapman & Mrs Hill
This has been the half-term for trips in Art!
The Y12 and 13 Fine Art and Graphic Communication students visited the National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery in London to enrich their contextual knowledge at the start of their projects.
The Y11 students visited the Tate Britain in London at the start of their mock exam to enable them to look at artists work actual size, find work that inspired them and analyse the techniques. 
The Y10 trip to Natural History Museum in Tring had art students working from observation, creating drawings and studies for their 'Natural World' project, with which they will be using as reference for working in mixed media and ceramics later on this term.
The Art Sixth form life-drawing sessions are now in full swing, with students able to draw from a professional life model. This enables students to build up life-drawing skills and evidence for their portfolios.
Stotfold Mill
Last weekend three SWA students volunteered to help at the Stotfold Mill Working Steam Weekend and they did such a fantastic job, the events committee wrote to us personally to pass on their thanks. Lucas Lyko, Thomas Warriner and Jamie Bali were ‘fantastic ambassadors for the school’, according to the team.
Well done boys.
 The Artist of the Month award goes to Abigail Chan Year 9. This homework demonstrates a strong start to Art at Samuel Whitbread, the use of tone and observation of the shadow is really impressive. Well done Abigail.
1st XV Rugby
The 1st XV Rugby team have gone four from four in the last few weeks.  The run started with a hard fought victory against Bedford Modern 1st XV, winning 28-10 with MVP going to Curtis Hymus. We then played Bedford School’s 2nd XV where we put in a fantastic performance, scoring tries from a variety of positions coupled with an outstanding defence winning 38-0.  MVP in that game was Jake Dodd for his ‘George North-like’ runs with the ball, voted by his own team mates. Next up was Knights Templar, with another strong performance winning 55-7 in the National Cup competition, with Lucas Town selected as MVP then finally last week we beat Saffron Walden County High School 59-7 with Rory Fookes chosen as MVP.  The season has started extremely well and the boys’ attitude has been fantastic. We are looking for this fine form to continue over the next few weeks with some big games coming up such as Royal Latin, Bedford School 2nd XV again and the next round of the National Cup.
U14 Football
On Wednesday the Year 9 boys continued their unbeaten start to life at Samuel Whitbread with a convincing 8-1 win over MK Academy in the second round of the Playstation National Schools Cup. A hat-trick from Jackson Armstrong alongside braces from Alex Matsukatova and Luke Revels and a single strike from Callum Holmes completed the rout and moved the boys into round three.
U19 Netball
The U19 Netballers took on their two toughest rivals in the league last week. Like always the girls showed true grit and determination in Sam Whit style. The girls played their hearts out as a team however were beaten in both games against Sharnbrook and Redborne. They have improvements to be made before the county tournament and will face the challenge again hopefully with a more positive outcome.
U16 Netball
The girls had just one game of the league to play last Tuesday however we took a large squad and tried out many new combinations which shows just how versatile our U16s can be. The girls performed superbly over opponents Biddenham and came away with a 22-0 win. Amazing circle work by both defence and attack. They have their county tournament first week back after half term, on 4th November.
U15 Netball
The U15 girls played an attacking game against Sandy with Lily Worbey and Megan Sawyer making a great team in the shooting circle scoring 17 in just 15 minutes. The girls played and continued their positive attitude towards the opposition. Brooke Yardley took some great interceptions with lots of turnovers being made by Abbie Green in defence. Keep up  the great play girls, well done!
U16 Basketball
This week the boys came up against Bedford School knowing they needed to give a much improved performance from their last game. From the first whistle they started quickly and raced into a 5 point lead, which they maintained through until the end of the third quarter. In the final quarter then pulled further away and finished 34-20 winners. Every member of the squad played excellently with Liam Holland top scoring, regularly finishing off strong plays from the rest of the squad. Bedford struggled to live with the movement and dynamic nature of the performance as we quickly went from attack to defence. Craig Revels led by example, while Nathan Wolsey showed his experience and the likes of Taylor Haddow, Jordan Webber and James Bright showed the energy levels and creativity throughout.  Next week the boys face St Thomas More in the final, wanting to take their first silverware of the season.
U16 Hockey
Our U16 girls travelled to Bedford last week to play Bedford Girls School. SWA made a great start with Cailin Prior taking control at centre back. Our defence dominated the opposition attack and kept us in the game. Corrine made some determined runs in the centre and dominated the midfield. The game was fast and furious with Bedford Girls showing some well drilled moves and individual skills. We grew in confidence over the first half and produced some explosive runs through Molly and Kizzy. Just before the half time whistle Becca stepped up and put one past the Bedford keeper. It was a well-deserved goal from a squad buzzing with confidence. We now look forward to our league games. Well done ladies.

Well done to all RBA boys and girls who competed in the county round of the National Cross Country championships last week. The event was hosted at RBA with schools from all over Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire and Cambridgeshire in attendance. All our pupils made the school proud with both teams qualifying for the regional round in November.
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.
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.
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
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:





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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
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