EHT News – December 2018

Feb 15

Dear parents/carers,

Here we are again – the end of another year at JCSC, and I’d like to take the opportunity to thank you for your unwavering support. It’s been a busy year (aren’t they all?) but a successful one, and we have so much to look back on, to be proud of and to celebrate.

At the end of term, we often say a fond farewell to some members of staff who are moving on to new challenges and this term is no exception. Of course, it’s a time of mixed emotions as we say “goodbye” to valued colleagues, and “hello” to new members of staff, keen to make a positive difference to our school community:

  • Mrs Alcock leaves the English department
  • Mrs Woods, who has been acting as our SENDCo this term also leaves us, having developed this key area while we awaited the arrival of our new, permanent appointment to this post

They both leave with our thanks and best wishes for the future.

  • Miss Aitchartnell joins the English department and will take over Mrs Alcock’s teaching commitment
  • Mr Gwillim, a chemistry specialist, joins our science department
  • Mrs Johnson joins the Executive Leadership Team as Assistant Headteacher. Amongst other responsibilities, she will lead on the SEN provision within JCSC, and will be a huge asset to our community

Another staffing change we were delighted to confirm was the appointment of Mrs Morton to Director of Primary, a role she started after half term. Mrs Morton brings with her a wealth of experience, having previously been a successful Executive Headteacher across two middle schools in the county, and she has a single focus – to improve the quality of education in years 5 and 6, thus improving our SATs scores even further.

From speaking to parents on the telephone, and in person, I do know that there is an ongoing problem with the conduct of a small minority of students on some of the school buses. We raised this concern with the local authority who are responsible for providing the travel and they have agreed to install CCTV on the buses, with priority given to those routes most affected. This will eventually be rolled out across the county, but we are the first to have access to this technology from the first day of next term. This will allow us to identify and deal with any student whose behaviour is not up to the expected standard, and leave the vast majority of children to travel safely and in comfort.

We have tried very hard to engage parents and the wider community more than ever this term – our ‘Back to School’ days for parents of year 5 and year 6 students proved popular and we had classes populated entirely by grown-ups experiencing a typical day at the lower school site. Their day started by lining up on the yard when the whistle blew, being taught in our classrooms by the teachers, and ended after assembly!

The Duke of Edinburgh Awards evening saw over 100 guests fill the main hall at the upper school site to see the students receive their bronze, silver and, for the first time at JCSC, a gold award. It was a superb occasion, and I am already looking forward to celebrating with the 2019 cohort next year!

Our Christmas Showcase event at the lower school site was an invitation to parents and carers to come in and see the kind of work that is being done by our children, and the Christmas Carol Concert we held yesterday proved to be our most popular and best yet. In fact, so many people asked to come that we couldn’t fit them and the children in our hall! The solution was that we hosted two concerts that ran simultaneously, with readers and the choir moving seamlessly between both events… and it was executed perfectly! Next year we hope to secure a bigger venue so that everyone can fit in!

Can I take this opportunity to thank you for ensuring your children comply with our uniform policy are arrive on time, every day, fully equipped to learn. As you will already know, we are having a real push in the New Year on encouraging our students to take responsibility, and arrive with the essential equipment necessary to learn:

  • Reading book, planner and pencil case
  • Black or blue pen
  • Green pen
  • Pencil, rubber and sharpener
  • Ruler
  • Protractor
  • Calculator and compass [upper school only]


If you’re looking for last minute stocking fillers – any [or all] of the above would be ideal! Failing that, we will have a stationery store in school to purchase anything necessary during the school day.

We don’t have a training day next term, so we look forward to seeing the children at 8.50am on Monday 7thJanuary 2019.

I hope you have a restful, enjoyable Christmas break and I wish you a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year!

Neil Rodgers

Executive Headteacher