Headteacher’s Blog – Week 12

Primary colours

All the colours of the rainbow were in Kingsway this week with an abundance of Year 5 children representing their primary schools. It was so lovely to open our doors to local children and have them experience a taste of Kingsway.

On Wednesday students from Lum Head, Cheadle, Etchells, Bolshaw, Prospect Vale, Meadowbank and Gatley primary school showed their creative flair in our Christmas Bauble Workshop led by Art Teacher and Transition Mentor, Mrs Dunn.

On Friday, Year 5 students from Gatley Primary School returned for a Science Workshop. Students carouselled between Biology with Mrs Lucas, Chemistry with Mr Insley and Physics with Mr McNulty. Message from Miss Halligan (Year 5 teacher): “We just wanted to say a huge thank you to you all for putting together such a fantastic science workshop for our children. They absolutely loved it and I think you've made them really excited about Science lessons at secondary school. All three teachers were brilliant and it was so great that the children got to have a go at each of the Science disciplines across the morning. It was all so organised and thoughtfully planned. We've managed to get some great photos which I know our parents will be thrilled to see too. I wish we could come back every week!“

At the other end of their education, our Year 11 students sat their first Pre-public examination. On Friday, the cohort of 320 students sat their first English and Maths exams. These exams have never been more important as they will be a key measure if the government needs to introduce contingency measures for the formal GCSEs in the summer. As in previous years, it is hoped that these exams will go ahead as planned, however with COVID still very much on our horizon, we are making sure our Year 11 cohort understands the importance of preparing really well for these PPE exams and achieving highly. We wish them all the best in the coming weeks.

On Wednesday, Mr Nicolaou ran the 4th STEM enrichment session. The focus was breadboarding which is a method of prototyping circuits prior to PCB manufacture. The students also gained skills in the use of workshop tools as well as testing each stage of the circuit using the multimeter and power supply. The project was an alarm circuit based on light i.e. when it is exposed to light an LED comes on along with a buzzer as a warning. It looks like they all had a great time.

Next weekend sees the return of Cheadle Village Victorian Christmas Markets. Kingsway is delighted to be involved again, with our student ambassadors and student parliament supporting the event - running stalls. We are also offering a park and ride service from our Broadway campus. We hope to see as many of our students and their parents as possible at this festive event.

As the festive season draws closer we look forward to spreading kindness. Last year saw a phenomenal response to our reverse advent calendar, which we are hoping to be able to surpass this year. All students have been shown a Power Point reminding the importance of supporting our local food banks. A list of suitable items such as toiletries and non-perishable food items have been shared and we would appreciate it if our Kingsway family could make a donation over the next two weeks. These will then be equally distributed to our two local food banks in Gatley and Cheadle to bring some Christmas cheer to families.

Finally, SNOW! Can you believe we are preparing for snow again? Please make sure your child is dressed appropriately if snowy weather prevails - they can wear wellies/boots to travel to and from school as long as they change into suitable school shoes once in school. Likewise, a warm waterproof coat is essential as the temperature drops. 

We very much hope that we can continue with business as usual over the coming weeks. The decision to close school is a last resort and would only be taken when all other possibilities about how to keep open have been exhausted. 

The major determining factor in making any decision is the safety and welfare of the students and staff. Typically, reasons that may lead to unavoidable school closure in the winter are:

  • Severe weather conditions which makes staffing ratios unsafe
  • Heating system failures (Boilers, flooding after leaks etc.)
  • Snow and ice (affecting access or movement around the building)
  • Flooding

We will always keep parents informed of any decisions via our website and text messages. It is important that school has the right contact information for each student. Please inform your child’s form tutor or Pastoral head of Year if your contact details have changed.

Year 11 Parents’ Evening

The Year 11 Parents’ Evening will take place on Thursday 6th January, between 5pm and 8pm. Parents’ Evening appointments will be held virtually using SchoolCloud, the online Parents’ Evening system we introduced last academic year. The system allows you to schedule your own Parents’ Evening appointments and attend appointments via video call. Appointments can be made from Thursday 9th December. 

Please visit https://thekingsway.schoolcloud.co.uk/ to book your appointments.

COVID-19 Guidance

The Department for Education has recently updated its guidance to schools following the new Omicron strain of the virus. 

  1. Face coverings must be worn, unless students are exempt, in all indoor communal areas. Students will be asked to put their face covering on as they enter school each morning. Face coverings are the best line of defence against the airborne nature of the virus. We have a small limited number of masks for students who lose/break/soil their mask during the school day. It is imperative that your child arrives at school with their mask (and ideally a spare) from tomorrow. Face coverings should cover the nose and mouth. Sanctions will be issued to students who do not bring a mask into school.
  2. Students should continue to test, using the LFD tests, twice weekly. If the LFD is positive, a follow up negative PCR is required before students return to school, NHS Test and Trace will continue to identify close contacts. All individuals who have been identified as a close contact of a suspected or confirmed case of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, irrespective of vaccination status and age, will be contacted directly and required to self-isolate immediately and asked to book a PCR test. They will be informed by the local health protection team or NHS Test and Trace if they fall into this category and provided details about self-isolation.
  3. At the start of next term all students will take an LFD test in school. The exact details and arrangements are not known at present but this may involve a staggered start to school to accommodate this requirement. Further details will be issued before the end of term.

Our priority continues to be the delivery of face-to-face, high-quality education to all our students. Please support this by following these two simple rules:

  • ensuring your child brings a mask to school every day
  • following the guidance of NHS test and trace

If you have any queries, or need to report a COVID result, please email covid@kingsway.stockport.sch.uk

Dates for your diary

Date Event
Friday 26th November - Friday 10th December Year 11 PPEs
Friday 17th December Santa Dash
Friday 17th December @ noon Term finishes
Tuesday 4th January Students return to school at 8:30am
Thursday 6th January Year 11 Virtual Parents' Evening

Have a good week, and stay safe and well.

Mrs J. Lowe

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