Subject: Samuel Whitbread Academy E-Newsletter Issue 79 (1/5/18)

Samuel Whitbread Academy 
Issue 79 (1/5/18)

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Dear Parents and Carers,

I’m pleased to say students are busily revising for their upcoming exams. The English and maths session for Year 11 parents was also well attended just over a week ago, with over 100 parents coming along to hear how the new GCSEs differ from previous years and how they can support their children through the exams. If you didn’t manage to attend this session then please find the presentation by clicking here.

The Gold DofE students took part in their five day expedition last week, which has to include four nights under canvass. The students all successfully nearly 40 miles whilst carrying all their food, clothes and tents in sweltering conditions. Mr Edwards said they were a credit to the school and coped incredibly well with the hot conditions, although there were a few red faces by the end! The Year 9 students also attended the Maths Challenge in Cambridge last week, and along with students from Henlow, RBA and Etonbury, they came back with an impressive 7th, 10th and 27th out of 32 schools. This is an amazing performance against the strongest schools in the entire region, many of these being independent.

At the end of last week the BEST musical, Alice in Wonderland, staged three performances to packed out crowds. The lower and middle school cast included students from many of the schools in our pyramid, with SWA students acting as choreographers, singing and dance coaches during rehearsals and on the night. Miss Tabert and Miss Meadows were stunned by the dedication and talent on display and thoroughly enjoyed directing the production this year. The future certainly looks very bright for Performing Arts in this pyramid and who knows, maybe there’s another Ben Whishaw within the cast!

Here’s a sentence you don’t see every day. The latest National Cup winners representing SWA are Mambo, Dee, Frenchy and Charisma - who along with their riders Ewan, Jennie, Annie and Caitlin won the National Equestrian Schools’ Association Show Jumping Championships last weekend. The equestrian team was only set up by Miss Wisson in September and immediately went on to become Bedfordshire champions last term, which meant they represented the county at the national championships at Bury Farm in Buckinghamshire. The team of four were up against 37 other schools, all county champions in their own right and from all across the country. We were 8th in the running order and took the lead with three clear rounds and an impressive time of under 90 seconds – which set the target for the rest to beat. Then came the nail biting wait whilst the remaining teams posted their times. After hours of waiting, SWA were eventually crowned national champions – with Caitlin also winning an individual 5th fastest time out of over 120 riders. This is fantastic achievement and a perfect platform to build upon for the equestrian team which has already has 14 members and no doubt more to come!

Nick Martin

Year 9
Year 10
Year 11
Year 9 pupils look smart and happy in class rooms, in games lessons and across the school site. With the summer weather (hopefully) just around the corner I would ask that we continue to follow the school uniform policy so well, especially regarding girls’ skirt length, keeping ties on and blazers. The summer extra-curricular timetable has also arrived so please do encourage your child/children to participate in school life as much as possible and attending many of the new clubs and opportunities available to them.

Miss E Wisson
The Year 10s start their first set of GCSE mock exams next week in their core subjects from Tuesday 7th to Friday 11th May. Students should ensure they have the correct equipment for each exam and get into the good habits of getting a good night's sleep and eating well in the morning before the exam.

Miss V Yadav
The Year 11s final day at school is set as Thursday 24th May. All students have an exam in the morning, for which they should turn up in normal school uniform. On the conclusion of the exam, if students wish to change into fancy dress for the remainder of their final day, they may do so. Students will then be in their lessons until the afternoon when they will have their leavers assembly before departing at 3pm.

After their final day, students are still required to be in school uniform to complete their remaining GCSE exams.

Mr R Sinclair

Sixth Form
Over the next fortnight Year 12 students are completing mock exams in each of their subjects. These are important markers of progress close to the halfway point of A-levels and we encourage students to ensure they are well prepared for each of these exams. 
The Year 13s final day, along with the Year 11s, will be Thursday 24th May. Students may arrive in fancy dress (ensuring it is not inappropriate!) before they have their leavers assembly and depart at lunchtime.

Mr L Huckle & Mrs S Hoad

Duke of Edinburgh
Last weekend 13 Sixth Form students traveled to Edale, Kinder and Snake Pass in the Peak District as part of their practice expedition for their Gold DofE.
The students walked 60km over four days and three nights, carrying 20kg in 20 degree heat, a fantastic achievement.
The students will now build up to their assessed expedition in the Yorkshire Moors in July.
Any current Year 11s or prospective Year 12s interested in doing Gold DofE should contact Mr Edwards -
David Dean Visit
David Dean, the former Football Association and Arsenal FC vice chairman, attended SWA on Monday to give Sixth Form students an insight into business management, his career in the upper echelons of sport and also a motivational guide to the importance of having goals and working towards them. After he delivered his talk to 200 students, Dein then engaged in an interesting Q&A session where students had the opportunity to quiz him on everything from Arsene Wenger to running a multi-million pound business. SWA would like to thank David Dean for donating his own time to spend with our students.
Last week in house assemblies Mr Martin and Sixth Form student Anton Homer reported the results of the BEST sleep survey conducted by students, which, after showing the results to a sleep expert, uncovered some interesting data. In short, SWA students especially are not getting enough regular sleep during the week, and Mr Martin highlighted the importance of this in the assemblies.

As the Summer term kicks in, the House competitions turn towards outdoor events with mixed rounders coming up and half an eye on the big event of House Olympics after half term.
The Year 11 interventions timetables can be found here.
Maths Challenge
Last week BEST entered 3 teams representing Robert Bloomfield, Etonbury and Henlow in a national mathematics competition. Each team comprised of two Year 8 students and two Year 9 SWA students. 32 schools competed in the regional final at the Centre of Mathematical Sciences at the University of Cambridge, many of which were independent schools. Etonbury were our top placed team coming 7th in the competition. Robert Bloomfield came 10th and Henlow 29th.
U14 Rugby
After an excellent season, SWA U14s took on Bedford Junior Blues in the first of what is hopefully an annual end-of-season encounter. With several SWA players playing for the Blues as their club side, it was sure to be a tasty encounter! The boys started off strongly and in a competitive match-up, were 17-12 up with 15 minutes to go. However, a disastrous 10 minute period resulted in Bedford scoring freely and eventually running out 31-17 winners. Lots to work on over the summer to be able to come back strongly for a National Cup run next year!
1st XI Football
A battling performance from SWA's 1st XI footballers saw them overcome Redborne 2-1 in the semi final of the U18 Bedford and District Schools Cup. Goals from Connor Haddow and Ryan Lawrence saw the boys into the final and keep alive hopes of a cup double, with the 1st XI in the County Cup semi-final this Thursday.
The first of the rounders fixtures took place last week in the fabulous British weather! The girls have had lots of practice over the last two weeks and again have been outstanding with their commitment and dedication towards school sport. The 'A' team played Wootton and after a very wet and slippy first innings SWA were narrowly in the lead. With a quick debrief of what was needed to change the girls adapted very quickly and came together as a team and won 8 rounders to 4.5.
The B team also performed well, winning 5.5 to 3.5 vs Wootton and narrowly losing to Sharnbrook, with Mia Hammer player of the match. Well done on a good start to the season.
National Equestrian Championships
The newly formed SWA Equestrian Team had an unbelievable weekend at the National Schools Equestrian Championships. A very disciplined  and calm performance saw all four jump clear in the outdoor arena in the morning session and qualifying for the afternoon session in the indoors arena. SWA were 8th in the running order out of 33 teams and had three fantastic clear rounds and all super-fast with a combined time of 89.59secs, then having a long and nerve-wracking wait to see if any county across the country could match our time! However, after hours of waiting, it turned out that no county in the country could - we came away with the National Schools Equestrian 80cm title! Having had this as our first year running the equestrian team at SWA, I could not be any prouder to represent Samuel Whitbread with these four amazingly talented athletes - Ewan Watts, Annie McMillan, Caitlin Sedgwick and Jennifer Hawkes. We are the champions of the country! It got better for us as a school as Caitlin came away 5th individually in the 80cm category out of 130+ riders and Ewan competed on Sunday in the 1.10m and had a tough course of at least 1.15-1.20m fences but did not disappoint, just being placed outside of the rosettes! Well done to all involved and many thanks to the parents for your support!! #TeamSWAEquestrian

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 Tuesday breaktime in room 335. Students can seek advice on many issues such as healthy eating, bullying, family worries, health & wellbeing concerns.

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.
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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BEST (Bedfordshire Schools Trust)

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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Samuel Whitbread Academy, Shefford Road, SG17 5QS, Clifton, United Kingdom
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