Subject: Samuel Whitbread Academy E-Newsletter Issue 85 (18/9/18)

Samuel Whitbread Academy 
Issue 85 (18/9/18)

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Dear Parents and Carers,

Year 9 students have made a fantastic start to their time at Samuel Whitbread. Several members of staff have mentioned to me how enthusiastic and focused the new students are in lessons and how well they have settled in. The number of students asking for directions around the site is gradually dwindling as they learn the layout of the school and they look very smart in their new uniform. This year there has been an unprecedented request for lockers, so we are currently contacting a number of companies to arrange for more lockers to be installed as soon as possible. On Tuesday we had our second annual Parents Information Evening for Year 9 parents, which once again was very well received. I would like to thank one of our parents, Julie Cook, who has been instrumental in organising this event and several other school improvement initiatives. Julie also helped set up our parents’ forum, which is a group of parents who meet with us regularly to help improve the academy. If you are interested in joining the group then please contact Mr Rowell.

We started the term by concentrating on the first of our new school values: ‘Respect’. During the assemblies at the beginning of the year, I talked to the students about being respectful to staff, visitors and to each other. I described how things as simple as holding the door open for each other and saying thank you go a long way. The values have also been added to the e-praise system, so we can award a praise point for students who are being respectful. The next value to be covered in assemblies will be ‘Empathy’.

We were absolutely delighted with the results this year. For the second year in succession, our students achieved GCSE results well above the national average. An impressive 70% of students gained a grade 4 or above in English and maths. In English 83% of students achieved a grade 4 or above in English Lit or Lang and 77% achieved a grade 4 or above in maths. There were a number of individual success stories, including many students who overcame illness or personal adversity to achieve a great set of results and we are proud of each and every one of them!

The A Level results were just as impressive, with just over a quarter (26%) of the grades achieved A* or A and 76% of grades A*-C or equivalent. There were a number of incredible individual success stories, including Aislinn Hopkins who gained four A* grades and is off to read law at UEA, Kieran Drakes, Head Boy who is off to study Economics at Warwick and Emily Onagourwa, Head Girl, who is off to study Architecture at Bath. Overall 98% of students went off to their first choice university and many other students went on to apprenticeships of colleges courses. At the Sixth Form awards evening this week we acknowledged some of the standout achievements along with invited guests Charles Whitbread, Lynda Tailor and guest speaker Simon Rowell – please see below for further details. It was a fantastic way to celebrate their achievements and say farewell to an amazing year group. We wish them all well on the next stage of their journeys.

Over the summer 28 students had an incredible trip to Tanzania with Camps International, spending 28 days working on local projects including helping build and refurbish school buildings in different communities, as well as getting a chance to meet the Masaai tribe, see African wildlife on safari and gain SCUBA diving certificates! It was an unbelievable experience for them all.

Nick Martin

Year 9
I would like to thank Year 9 students for an absolutely incredible start to Samuel Whitbread Academy this year. The enthusiasm, effort and positive attitude shown by students has been excellent and this will stand them in good stead going forward into the year. Students have shown great determination to be successful. It was lovely to see so many parents attend the Year 9 Information Evening (presentations from the evening can be found here) and I would like to take this opportunity to thank parents for all their support in ensuring a smooth transition for the students. I look forward to working with both students and parents and am excited to see what successes we can celebrate across the year group in the coming year and beyond.

Miss V Yadav
Year 10
Welcome back Year 10 - I hope all of you have had a great summer. I am looking forward to a fantastic year to start our GCSEs. We have had our first week go by and I am extremely proud of the positive comments from staff regarding the attitude of Year 10s since coming back. Keep it up!!

Miss E Wisson

Year 11
Dear Parents,
We are now starting the most important year of your children’s school life. They will face many different challenges and are in uncharted territory as far as pressure is concerned. I look forward to working with you to ensure any barriers they face are removed and they are given the best chance of success possible.
I have been trying to focus on the successes of the year group in previous newsletters. If your child has any kind of success outside of school, please email me to let me know. The most recent success I would like us to celebrate is Ellie Cooke (11H). She had an amazing summer of rowing including outstanding performances in the British Rowing Championships, winning the St Neots Regatta and Peterborough Summer Regatta as well as a 24 hour rowing charity event. Well done Ellie, SWA are extremely proud of your achievements.

Mr R Sinclair
Sixth Form
Year 12
The new Year 12 students have made a superb start. They are settling in to their new classes and subjects and starting to understand the changes in work ethic between GCSE and A levels. To help students and parents understand the expectations and their future steps we have a Year 12 Parents Information Evening on Thursday 27th September in the Main Hall at 7pm. All parents, carers and students are welcome to attend. A letter has gone home with students with the details. 
If a sixth form student is unable to attend due to illness, please send an email or phone message to 01462 628065.
All of our sixth form students are also reminded to abide by the dress code which can be found on the Sixth Form part of the academy website.
Finally, if a student needs time off for an interview, driving test or similar activity the Leave of Absence form can be requested from the Sixth Form office.

Year 13
Having taken on the role of head of Year 13 in September I have been impressed with how quickly our students have hit the ground running after their summer break. With an excellent set of results from the previous cohort we have high expectations for our current Year 13 to reach and we are confident they can do so. Much of their time will now need to be spent looking at future pathways. The UCAS process is underway and students should have their personal statements written by October half term to ensure they can then successfully apply for their desired universities. Oxbridge/medical/veterinary students' application process is more pressing with various October deadlines and should be registering with the exams team for their admissions tests and preparing their personal statements now. Miss Priano is holding a drop in session on Thursday 20th September for any applicant needing support and guidance. 
Those seeking pathways other than university should ensure they book an appointment with our 4YP career adviser Rose Birmingham. Appointments can be made through Miss Butler in the Sixth Form office. Rose Birmingham is also holding a Level 3 apprenticeship workshop on Wednesday 16th September at 11am. Anyone interested should inform their tutor to be booked onto the course.
Awards Evening
On Wednesday, Samuel Whitbread celebrated some of the incredible successes of last year's students in the Year 13 Annual Awards Evening. Parents and students heard citations of dedication and excellence in each subject giving awards for outstanding academic achievement, followed by a talk from guest speaker Simon Rowell about the importance of making a mark.
There were several special awards; the Barbara Tye Award for resilience in the face of adversity was awarded to Chloe Freer; the Jonathan Kitulagoda Award for contribution to science was awarded to Jack Hutson (pictured below, right); the Lynda Tailor Award for contribution to sports (presented by Mrs Tailor herself) went to Becky Darnell; the Robson Award for outstanding personal qualities was given to Tamsin Carter; Mr Martin awarded the Principal's Award for outstanding academic achievement to Aislinn Hopkins (pictured below, left) in recognition of her four A*s at A-Level. Before outgoing Head Boy Kieran Drakes and Head Girl Emily Onagoruwa ended proceedings, Charles Whitbread awarded the House Cup to Olivier. Congratulations and thank you to all those who attended - you were a fantastic year group! Photos from the evening can be found on our Facebook and Twitter sites.

Over the summer, 28 students travelled to Tanzania for an incredible, 28-day-long life-changing experience with Camps International. Getting the chance to go on safari, meeting the Masaai tribe and SCUBA diving (a huge 22 students gained SCUBA qualifications) was just part of the trip - the tough but rewarding work of five community projects including building and refurbishing schools in under privileged Tanzanian communities was an experience all students will take with them forever. There were lots of fantastic moments throughout the trip and students did themselves, and the school, proud. Photos can be found on Twitter @SWA-Tanzania18 or on the school Facebook site.
The latest SWA Duke of Edinburgh expedition set off on Wednesday with 28 Year 11 students travelling to the South Downs and Beachy Head near Eastbourne for their practice Silver expedition. From the incredible photos they have sent back they look like they are having a great time! (see @SamWhitDofE on Twitter for more photos)
SWA Policies
These are the Samuel Whitbread Academy policies updated over the summer:

• Assessment Policy
• Anti-Bullying Policy
• Screening, Searching & Confiscation Policy
• Behaviour Management including physical intervention policy
• Safeguarding Policy

These policies can be found on the school website here

Performing Arts
This year's BEST pantomime - Cinderella - is fast approaching and auditions took place this Monday with over 100 students from several different BEST schools. If you would still like to be involved but didn't make it to auditions please see Miss Tabert for details.

In response to the news that the local church was broken into over the summer, the music department is putting on a Community Fundraising Concert on Tuesday 30th October at 7pm in the theatre. Tickets are £5 for adults and £3 concessions, with all monies raised being donated to the local church. The evening will be a selection of music ensembles and excellent soloists. Please come along and support.
Year 9 vaccinations for Diptheria/Tetanus/Polio and Meningitis A,C,W,Y will be on the 24th/25th of April. More details will be given nearer the time along with consent forms. These dates are also available to view on the school calendar.
The U16 basketball boys began their season with a comprehensive 65–15 win over Bedford Free School last week. A mixture of Year 10 and Year 11 students took to SWA’s newly surfaced court and delivered a fantastic performance. Some strong defensive play but even better offensive play enabled the boys to take an early lead in the first quarter and set the standard for the remainder of the match. The highest point scorer and MVP goes to James Bright, but a special mention must go to Omarion Bailey who was outstanding throughout. For some video highlights of the match visit @SamWhitPE on Twitter or click here for a snippet.
After just two half hour training sessions and less than a full week at the school together, the U14 rugby boys made the journey to play a well organised and very confident Wellingbourgh School.
In spite of the inclement conditions, SWA focused on attacking with width. Whitbread started very well and soon took the lead through Max St Leger followed by a stunning touchline conversion from Ben Radnor. Radnor soon showed his pace by outflanking the defence and converting his own try. A characteristically strong carry from man of the match Aaron Smith released John Richardson to score under the posts. Radnor took his personal points tally to 11 by converting.
Wellingborough pushed SWA all the way with the match ending 19-21 to give Whitbread's newest team a fantastic winning start to the season.

James Wilson helped raise over £10,000 for Prostate Cancer UK over the summer through various golf events and sponsorship.
James, junior captain Chesfield Downs Golf and Country Club, organised a sponsored golf competition and held raffles and prizes to attract people to play and help raise the money. Well done, James, the school is proud of your efforts.

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.
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.
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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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
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