Subject: Samuel Whitbread Academy E-Newsletter No.6 (28/03/14)

Samuel Whitbread Academy E-Newsletter                                                    
No.6 (28/3/14)

Dear Parents and Carers

At Samuel Whitbread Academy we are always keen to listen to the views of parents, students and staff on how we can improve. In the recent parental questionnaires completed online or at the parent review evenings, one of the areas that parents thought we could improve was homework. As a result we have been working on this area for the last few months and we have identified an interesting new web-based homework system, called 'Show My Homework', which has been used successfully by a number of other secondary schools in the area.

For the last few weeks ten teachers at SWA have been trialing this system. The site allows teachers, students and parents to view the homework that has been set via their own secure personal logins. Show my Homework not only allows staff to upload homework tasks but also for students to submit homework online and parents to monitor the amount of time their children should be spending on their homework.

For the purpose of this trial, SWA are randomly selecting students/classes to participate, therefore your son/daughter may or may not be involved. If the trial proves to be successful we will aim to phase in this new system across the school over the summer term with a view to being fully implemented for September. For more information and to provide feedback, click here.
Rob Robson
Exam Support Sessions
We are now offering a free late bus service on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday! There are a whole host of sessions available to students, from various different subjects areas, to help them prepare for their exams. Students should speak with their individual subject teachers for more details.

Click here to view the poster in full.

Click here to view more about this on our website
Arlesey Remembers You - A World War One Commemoration Project

This year marks the centenary of the start of the First World War and the village of Arlesey has decided to commemorate this fact. The war resulted in the sacrifice of millions of lives, and in the case of Arlesey, 87 men who lost their lives during WWI are commemorated on the war memorial.

The people of Arlesey are initiating a project which intends to commemorate those men who lost their lives and leave a legacy for future generations. The aim is to recognise the individual lives lost by placing a British Legion poppy cross on every single grave. Some men do not have a grave in which case we will place a cross on an anonymous grave in an appropriate cemetery. How big a task is this? Well the 87 men are buried in at least 48 cemeteries across six countries including one in Iraq, five in Israel and two in Turkey. The majority are in northern France and Belgium. There could be more cemeteries to visit because we have 10 names of which we have no information at all. As to the legacy, we aim to research all the names so we can identify the 10 we know nothing about and record all the men's lives to turn a name into a person. All this will be used to build a web site. Finally we will record our efforts by way of a television documentary that will be broadcast on the Community Channel.

As you can see it is a big project, but being a community project means the ability to gain a lot of support. Which is why we are seeking volunteers, and lots of them! There are many ways to get involved, from donating money towards the documentary, to website designing, production of the documentary, researching names, or volunteering to visit a cemetery - to place a cross and take a few photographs for the website.

If you wish to become involved, follow us on Facebook here - or email for information.

Wish us luck in this venture or better still get involved!
‘Arlesey Remembers You’ Project Team

40th Anniversary / Theatre
We have an amazing offer for staff, students and families within BEMAT. Milton Keynes Theatre are wishing SWA a Happy Birthday by offering us some tickets at discounted prices to see Robin Cousins' Ice show, live on ice, on Thursday 10 April at 7:30pm.

The show is directed and choreographed by Olympic champion Robin Cousins. It promises to be a dynamic and atmospheric show, where world class skaters glide, soar, flip and fly. Basically if you like Dancing on Ice, you will love this show. 

Tickets are usually £25 each (plus booking fee), however we are able to purchase tickets at £17.50* each (no booking fee). If you would like to book a ticket, please email Miss Hall ( to let her know how many tickets you would like, as tickets are limited we will be on a first come, first served basis. Payment will then need to be made asap.

Thanks for your interest and enjoy the show.
Miss Hall

* Please note that £5 per ticket will be donated to SWA's 40th fund raising pot, to raise money to purchase an all weather sports pitch, to be used by the Academy and the local community.

Head Boy/Girl
The applications for Head Boy and Head Girl are in, and what a tough job it was choosing between them! The 14 students who applied have been whittled down to Rachel Garner, Hannah Stock and Alice Infante, Sion McGregor, Kishan Thaker and Tom Nixon. These students will be campaigning for votes over the next two weeks with voting starting after the Easter break. Good luck everyone!
Stranger Danger
Bedfordshire Police is urging parents and guardians to warn children about talking with strangers after they have received five suspicious reports over recent months, the most recent being Friday (Mar 21) in Garden Road, Dunstable at 4pm. Click here to find out more.
High Attainers trip to the University of Bedfordshire

On 26th March, 20 Samuel Whitbread Year 9 High Attainers joined with 40 students from Robert Bloomfield to visit the University of Bedfordshire. The students took part in a variety of events to explore what life would be like at University. They were able to explore the university facilities, and quiz current students on their courses and career plans.

Year Groups
Year 9
Benjamin Daniels was nominated for the Bedfordshire Young Person of the Year at the beginning of the year and has now made it through to the next round. He was nominated for the work he does outside of school hours in supporting and coaching young people in sport. Benjamin started the voluntary work prior to coming to SWA and has continued it since his arrival in September giving up two or three nights a week. He is an exceptional young man who deserves the recognition that this award brings should he be successful.

Year 10
Mondays & Wednesdays
Room 106
1:20pm - 1:50pm
Click here to view full details on our website.

Many subjects (including Maths and English) have support sessions after school on Tuesdays and or Thursdays for students who would like extra help with their studies. Please ask your teachers for more details.

Year 11
Mondays & Wednesdays
Room 106
1:20pm - 1:50pm
Click here to view full details on our website.

Many subjects (including maths and English) have support sessions after school on Tuesdays and or Thursdays for students who would like extra help with their studies, please ask your teachers for more details.

We are now offering a free late bus service on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday! There are a whole host of sessions available to students, from various different subject areas, to help them prepare for their exams. Students should speak with their individual subject teachers for more details. A full list of sessions can be found here.

Prom Reminder
Just a reminder that prom tickets need to be paid in full by the end of March.

Year 11 revision sessions:
Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursday after school we are running after school ‘catch-up’ study and revision classes for Year 11 GCSE Business Studies students. Please come along and take advantage of this extra time.

Year 11 Photographs
Your son/daughter has been given an order form for their Year 11 individual and whole school photographs.
If you would like to order any of the packs available, please order directly online here. You will need to use the photo ID and password which can be found at the bottom right of the order form.

All orders must be in by Friday 28th March, as Kittle Photographic Ltd will be processing the orders on Monday 31st March.

Sixth Form
Year 12
Parents Review Evening (PRE)

Please use the below link to make your appointments for the PRE taking place on 28th April. The bookings become live at 3pm on Tuesday 1st April.
If possible, please can you only book with one teacher per subject. If you experience any problems please contact Jayne Reeve on 01462 628046 and she can make the bookings for you.

Year 12 Study Leave – Leave Friday 9th May & Return Monday 9th June
This year exams will be even more difficult than in the past due to the new A-level reform (‘linear approach’) and students will be expected to recall a wealth of information. The only way to get prepared for these types of exams is to ensure students start revising early. Careful time management, staying healthy (eating and sleeping well) and revising in small chunks frequently is much more effective than last minute cramming. Students should start revising now to ensure they meet their full potential.

We hope that all students will utilise this time effectively to ensure they are fully prepared for each and every exam. If you feel that your son/daughter requires any additional support, please contact a member of the 6th form team who will endeavour to provide further guidance and assistance.

Good luck!

Supporting the community 12A’s charity climb!
Every year 6th form students are required to carry out a community project. 12A have undertaken the mammoth task of organising a charity climb of mount Snowden.
Whilst most students raise money from bake sales or carol singing at the local old people’s home etc, 12A went one step further! They have organised the whole trip themselves, from first raising over £800 to actually get themselves to Snowden, to even roping in teachers Mr Morris, Mr Saran, Mrs Pigram, Mr Goode and Mrs West to join the team. They will be walking the mountain to raise money for local charity Sue Ryder in Moggerhanger. The walk itself will be taking place on June 28th.

We need your support by donating whatever money you can to our Just Giving page:

We have had local businesses commit to donating which is fantastic. Look out for the next e-newsletter for an update!!!

Debate Challenge
12E and 12H went head to head this week in the quarter final of the Year 12 Debate Challenge, and it proved to be the tie of the round so far, with fantastic points raised from both sides. Congratulations to 12H who were the narrow victors and will now progress to the semi-finals where they will be up against 12C.

Both tutor groups are required to check the competition rules to remind themselves of the debate title and what side of the argument to argue.

Applied to University?
Student Finance – If you have applied for a University course for 2014/15 you will need to start the process of applying for your student loan. The application opened in February 2014 and is an on-line process. The website is

Please drop into the sixth form office if you require any assistance
Sports News - @SamWhitPE

The Under 14 boys football team continued their unbeaten run since September with a spectacular 5-0 win over Redborne in the Bedfordshire Schools County Cup semi-final. The team was outstanding and a real credit to the school. SWA were expecting a difficult game against tough opposition but the whole unit stepped it up and put in a great performance. The goals came from Jack James, Sam Boggon, Charlie Scott, Cian Mitchell and a magnificent team goal finished off by Cass Chapman-Hearn.
X Country
SWA cross-country team finished the season on a high at the Biggleswade Cross-Country Relays held at Rowney Warren. The team demonstrated their strength and depth with the Boys and Girls both taking home a one-two-three. There were some fantastic runs with a special mention to Tom Angell and Chloe Emery who ran the fastest legs in the race. Well done to everyone who has competed for Samuel Whitbread Academy over the winter, bring on the athletics season!
Last week, SWA hosted an historic, first ever girls' rugby match for the school, versus Biddenham. The commitment, skill and spirit showed by both teams was fantastic and SWA ran out 31-10 winners. For the 20 girls in the squad it was the first time many of them had played a full game of rugby and their enthusiasm demonstrated the hard work they have put in during training and in the new core games rugby lessons this year. They are a credit to the school. Well done, girls.
The Dance Show takes place on 24th April at SWA. This is always a fantastic event with most of our GCSE and A-level students involved in showcasing their work so please come along! Tickets are available from the finance office.
Library News
We have added over 2500 eBooks to Eclipse which can be read on-line or downloaded to your device. The eBooks have been added as part of a temporary demo and if they prove popular we may be able to make them a permanent addition.

We also have some fantastic, new and exciting paperbacks (below).

Reading for pleasure will significantly help you improve in all your school subjects as well as being a great way to de-stress and relax.
Learning Support
Thank you to the sixth formers and staff in the ASC base who are busy presenting assemblies in preparation for Autism Awareness Day on 2nd April. We are looking forward to having a good turn out from students and staff at the lunchtime information event in the activities hall.

At the end of term the department will be posting home confirmation of the exam access arrangements for students in Years 11, 12 and 13 who have been assessed by the Learning Support Department. Over the next month the department will also be sending a survey for parents, carers and students to provide us with feedback on how the department is doing. This is an annual exercise and we always value and seek to act on the feedback provided.

Looking ahead to the summer term we will be welcoming Thomas Rowell to the school as SENDCo and Assistant Principal for SEND across the BEMAT trust schools. He will take over leadership of Learning Support from Pippa Gibbs who will continue in her role of Specialist Assessor and learning support teacher. Mr Rowell has been an Assistant Head Teacher at Harlington Upper School for several years and is really looking forward to joining BEMAT after Easter.

We would like to thank Pippa Gibbs for her outstanding contribution and dedication in her role as SENDCo.
After the success of ‘A Night at the Musicals’, SWA’s Spring Music Concert 2014 is already keenly anticipated. It takes place on Monday 31st March at 7pm in the Main Hall. Tickets are available from SWA Cashier’s Office, room 332, at £4 for adults, £3 for students and concessions.
Business Studies
SWA’s Young Enterprise company, Poseidon, have been publicising their product through the local press recently. Click here to read an article published in the Biggleswade Chronicle, and a short video demonstrating their product can be found here.

Essential Revision Resources
As GCSE and A Level exams draw closer, it is essential that students have a comprehensive revision strategy in place. These outstanding video resources provide Business and Economics students with practical advice on revision and exam techniques:

Exam Preparation: Business Studies
Study Skills for People who Hate to Study
Memory Techniques
Speed Learning
Exam Techniques

The resources cover a range of areas, including how to move up a grade, setting goals and priorities, techniques for study, memory and revision and knowledge retention.

Sports News - @SamWhitPE
The Junior Girls hockey team continued their winning streak, beating Redborne 2 - 0. The game was played in the opposition half for most of the match but SWA found it difficult to get around a barrage of opposition defenders. Eventually the deadlock was broken, both goals were scored by Kate Chappell in the final 10 minutes.

The Senior Girls side had their toughest match so far against Sharnbrook, defending valiantly for much of the game against a side that fielded a number of county players, before eventually succumbing 5-0. Goalkeeper Ella Rogers made a number of incredible saves, including a reflex save that she deflected up and over the cross bar.

The Senior Boys Hockey squad visited Bedford Modern to play their final game of the season. We played against a very tidy, experienced side who were well drilled and had the luxury of an England player. The pace was extremely fast and in the first ten minutes SWA dominated with fabulous skills from Rogan Pond, Will Barnett and Kyle Watson. This bright start was rewarded with a first goal, and SWA maintained a tight defence. Modern then upped a gear and took the game beyond SWA’s reach. Cam Plant was outstanding in goal and managed to save over a dozen shots on target, the opposition coach and manager being very complimentary and awarding him player of the match.
The second half produced some excellent hockey, Pond scoring our second goal with the final score 6-2 to Modern. All boys played well and were a pleasure to watch and take away on a fixture.

Good luck next year.
Mrs West


Cam Plant
Matt Norman
Jack Chiswell
Steven Gibson
Rogan Pond
Will Barnett
Will Pope
Kyle Watson
Robbie Angell
Tom Angell
Paul Angell
Sean King

SWA’s U15 girls cricket team achieved third in the county at the Lady Taverners National Competition for schools. After a handful of sessions with Bedfordshire Cricket Ltd coaches, funded through the Chance to Shine initiative, the girls lost to eventual winners Sharnbrook in their first game, but recovered to comprehensively beat Challney Girls and Bedford Academy, improving hugely throughout the tournament. All SWA girls contributed to the success, with Chloe Emery’s bowling along with Megan Dennis and Kate Chappell’s batting among particular highlights.
Staff Netball
Staff took part in a Sport Relief Charity Netball Match on Thursday 27th March and the PE department were victorious (11-5). It was a hard fought battle with many of the male members of staff finding the rules too difficult to understand!
There may be a time when we need to close in an emergency or we are forced to close suddenly.
Click here to view full details on our website.

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.

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 the staff in the kitchen or come to the Data Office Room 339 and speak to Kelly Furphy. If your child feels uncomfortable approaching the staff then please call Kelly Furphy on 01462 628044 between 0800hrs and 1600hrs.

Drop in Sessions
Drop in sessions with the school nurse start after half term, 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.

Shopping Online?
There is a new easy way to raise funds for Bedfordshire East Schools Trust when shopping online. Simply visit, and type in Bedfordshire East Schools Trust when asked which charity you would like to support. It also gives you the opportunity to download the Shop 2 Fundraise tool which then alerts you each time you are internet shopping on a site that supports charities via Shop 2 Fundraise. A simple, easy way to raise funds for school projects!
Service Families
Since September 2013 Samuel Whitbread has employed a part-time Pastoral Worker for service families. If you think you are going to be posted please contact Lucy Yule (01462 628019) so that she can help your child's transition go as smoothly as possible. We understand your circumstances might change again and that's OK. Kelly Furphy (01462 628044) will also assist in any transition procedure and documentation needed.

Service Families
There are monthly drop-in sessions at Chicksands and Henlow bases for parents of service children. Lucy Yule is available to talk to you, along with the PSO from Robert Bloomfield and Campton Lower. Please look out for details which are given by text message.
Just a reminder that parents can log in to the e-praise system to check the success of their children by clicking here.

Contact Details
If you wish to change your Address/Telephone /e-mail or any other information we hold on our SIMS information system at SWA please contact Mrs K Furphy on or telephone on 01462 628044. It is important that we hold 
the correct information for you in case of an emergency.

Appointments for the doctors or dentist etc. should, wherever possible, be arranged out of Academy hours. If this cannot be avoided, written evidence must be produced, e.g. appointment card, letter from doctor, these appointments are recorded as 
an absence.

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 in their diary or a note enabling them to sign out.

The Attendance Office is in Block 3, Room 107 in Reception.

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 107).

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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