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Headteacher’s Blog – Week 26

Welcome to the start of the summer term 2021.

Rather than looking back on what the last year has been like, I thought we should start the summer term looking forward, with enthusiasm and anticipating what is to come!

The Class of 2021: For our Year 11 students, we now have more detail about how the teacher assessed grades will be used to replace their GCSE exams. Teachers are currently working on this process, ready for the submission of grades by the 18th June 2021.

Year 11 students need to continue to work hard and try their best as is our vision ‘to be the best versions of themselves’. Whilst the evidence for their grades will take account of what they have achieved thus far, it will also take account of their future academic performance. This includes the mini-exams which will be taking place between 4th May 2021 and 14th May 2021.

I am sure that Year 11 students and parents will have questions, for example about leaving school, prom and results day. We will continue to communicate with our students and their families as soon as decisions have been made. 

The current expectation is that, for the vast majority of Year 11 students, their last day in school will be Friday 28th May 2021. However, some students may be required to return to school to provide supporting evidence for their GCSE assessments. We will also continue to support students after 28th May 2021, with advice and information on their post-16 pathways.

Students will receive their GCSE results on Thursday 12th August 2021 - more information to follow.

Aside from Year 11, other students can also look forward this term to fifteen weeks of hopefully uninterrupted learning! I am pinning all my hopes on a Covid free term for our staff and students and their families. We will continue to take the necessary precautions including:

  • the wearing of face coverings in school (as per the updated government guidance on 6th April 2021). The Prime Minister’s roadmap suggests that this rule will be relaxed on Monday 17th May 2021. We will share updated information with our families nearer the time.
  • twice weekly rapid testing at home for all staff and students to help identify anyone who has the virus, but is not displaying symptoms so that they can isolate and keep their family and school community safe.
  • separation of year groups at social times and one way systems in both campuses to avoid the spread of the virus across student groups. 

The Class of 2026: 2026 seems a long way in the future, but these ten and eleven year olds are already gearing up for joining Kingsway in September. We are really looking forward to meeting them and their families in the coming weeks. Mrs Wardle (Deputy Headteacher) and Mrs Jones (Transition Mentor) have a rich array of events taking place to help aid students transition to high school, despite the barriers presented to us by the pandemic.

This week, we will be holding our Welcome Evening for the class of 2026 parents and carers. Usually this would have been a face to face event but, due to current restrictions, we will be posting a welcome presentation on the Class of 2026 Parents’ Facebook page and on our website at the same time. Should you have any comments or questions, please post them below the video on our Facebook page, where Mrs Wardle and Mrs Jones will be available from 5:45pm to respond to you. We hope that this will allow for greater engagement and enable you as parents/carers to ask us questions directly.

Following this event, we will also post a FAQ sheet to share with all families.

Finally, I would like to add my tributes to the Duke of Edinburgh who passed away last week. I too hope to live to 99 and look back on a life well lived. One of my first actions as Headteacher at The Kingsway School in 2013 was to introduce the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme to provide opportunities for Kingsway students to have fun, make new friends, improve their self-esteem and build confidence. Since then we have had many hundreds of students successfully complete the award, pushing their own boundaries and creating the ‘best version of themselves’ in the process. I could not be prouder of any young person who works hard and always tries their best - there is no greater attribute in my eye!

Tribute from Miss Horsey (DofE Coordinator)

The Duke of Edinburgh Award has been a huge part of my time at The Kingsway School and is a great celebration of a range of achievements our students have completed - from volunteering in the local community, to walking 10km in the pouring down rain! 

It was an honour to represent the school at Westminster Abbey in November 2016, in attendance with HRH Prince Phillip, celebrating 60 years of the award. 

Our students have really showed what the Duke of Edinburgh is about - creating memories which allows students to build the skills, confidence, and resilience they need to make the most out of life. 

Whilst the COVID pandemic has had a huge impact on our lives, The Kingsway School DofE students have shown great determination to complete the award and I’m proud to continue working with the students as they complete their award. 

Dates for your diary

Date Event
Thursday 15th April Year 6 Virtual Welcome Evening

Have a lovely week, and stay safe and well.

Mrs J. Lowe

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Headteacher’s Blog – Week 25

This week we welcome back Mrs Dunn (Teacher of Art) from her maternity leave and say goodbye to Mr Fraser (Resource Centre Teaching Assistant). We wish Mr Fraser well for the future and thank him for his work with our resource students.

Our Resource Centre celebrated Friday's Red Nose Day with great success: “The students all wore something red and took part in a Red Nose quiz and a cake sale - staffed by Milly F and John D and a wonderful 'open mic' session compered by Mr Sarkissian. The afternoon started with a PowerPoint by Austin O to explain why we were raising money. The students performed a variety of acts, including a solo singing performance (Bethany W), a comedy session (Zidaan M), storytelling and dancing (Ibrahim K) drama performances (Gabriella T, Tiana C, Asad H, Jake I. Danny I, Bethany W, Ahnaf K, Jack B, Jake D and Milly F) a fabulous 'masked singer' performance and Salsa by Jake I. Austin pledged £10 for Mr Sarkissian to do the robot dance which he did - helped by Ahnaf - will Mr Sarkissian ever forgive Austin? We are not sure but it was worth it! Mrs Archer finished the day with a fabulous poem all about the resource students. At first count, we have raised over £80! A big thank you to all the Resource School students, who were all AMAZING and to the generosity of their parents. An extra big thank you to Mr Sarkissian and Mrs Archer for making the day such a success”. Mrs Burgess

One of our resource students is shielding at home due to having cystic fibrosis. He still took part - this is from his mum:

“I don't like to hang around when he is having his online lessons... I have to remind him of the time and sometimes have to help him log on but then I tend to leave him to get on with it. But... on Friday I couldn't help but listen in... and I kind of feel privileged that I was able to! Mr Sarkissian, you had us in stitches and you Mrs Archer had me in floods of tears! I was an emotional wreck by the end of the day! Thank you to you all.”

Last week saw our testing team complete their last COVID test in our mass testing centre. Since lockdown, we have carried out 4500 tests! Thanks to the support of staff, governor and parent volunteers who worked every day to get through the government’s requirement to test all staff and students.

Schools have now moved to self-testing and we handed out approximately 2500 home tests to consenting students last week. Please see the Privacy notice for COVID home testing. Along with the tests is a separate booklet explaining how to test and the way in which results must be reported. ALL positive results must be reported to school, and a confirmatory PCR test booked. With regular testing and increasing vaccinations, it certainly feels like there is light at the end of the dark COVID tunnel and it won’t be long before we can enjoy hugging our friends and family again.

Thank you to all parents for their overwhelming support over the last year.

Staff and students are required to continue to self-test over the Easter holidays. Instructions have been given to students, recommending testing on Monday and Thursdays.

Last week saw our Year 7 Virtual Parents’ Evening. For many families this was the first opportunity to meet the subject teachers and understand the progress their child has been making. We were overwhelmed with the lovely messages of support:

“Thank you to all the staff who gave their time and support during the Year 7 parents’ evening. Great feedback and positive thinking to lead our children forward from what has been a difficult year for everyone. WELL DONE”

“Really impressed with how the parents' evening was organised and run. So efficient and much easier for parents, not having to finish work early, sort out childcare, spend time travelling to and from school, etc. Teachers all did great and ran exactly to time on every meeting. Could not have been better. I hope this can be considered as an option for future parents evening. Thank you”

After school is very busy and we would ask that if you do collect your child by car, please be considerate of others and park away from Broadway and Foxland roads because these become easily congested, and we do not want any accidents.

In the coming days PC 17950 Maule will patrol, identifying drivers who park dangerously or cause an obstruction.

Battle of the books

Congratulations to Jess F and Elise M (10S) who were the winners of this year's Battle of the Books competition. They acted out a scene from Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet to convince the judges that their chosen book was the best. Well done girls!

This week we introduce our Parent Governor Tracey Payton.

I have been a Parent Governor at The Kingsway School since May 2018 and have twins in Year 11.

For the past 8 years, I have worked as a Higher Level Teaching Assistant at Gatley Primary School and have a keen interest in the ways in which children learn. As such, I am currently working towards a BA in Education Studies- proof that learning is a lifelong activity!

My role includes chairing the Standards Committee and being a Community Link Governor. I consider my overarching role to be one of critical friend to school leaders in order to drive school development as well as supporting staff to facilitate an engaging and diverse curriculum which children are passionate about.

The education and well-being of our young people is such an important aspect of school life, and I strongly believe that all pupils should be given every opportunity to become the very best version of themselves they can be. Living and working in the community gives me an insight into what our children need and the ways in which The Kingsway School, and The Education Learning Trust, can work with parents and wider stakeholders to ensure we are collaborating in order to ‘Turn Potential into Reality’ through our core values of Opportunity, Achievement and Respect.

Dates for your diary

Date Event
Friday 26th March End of term
Monday 12th April Students return to school - 8:30am
Thursday 15th April Year 6 Virtual Welcome Evening

Have a lovely Easter break, and stay safe and well.

Mrs J. Lowe

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Headteacher’s Blog – Week 24

What a busy time it was in school last week. Staff returned and were able to base themselves in their own classrooms for the first time since September. Students were also back in school and hit the ground running in lessons. 

Our amazing testing team carried out around 1500 LFD (Lateral Flow Device) tests  - the team are staff and community volunteers who have undertaken government training in order to deliver the tests to our staff and students.

We have one more week of testing in-school, after which, consenting students will be given home testing kits. This is something staff have been doing for two weeks now, and is very straight forward.

Unfortunately, we had a couple of positive cases last week, resulting in a handful of students having to self-isolate for 10 days. The government guidance to schools is very clear: in the event of a positive LFD test, students and close contacts must self-isolate. A negative PCR test does not change this outcome. I know this will be frustrating for families, especially when the return to school is so recent, but we must follow the guidance (see below). The best way for students to avoid the requirement to self isolate is to follow HANDS, FACE, SPACE advice - wash hands regularly and thoroughly, wear a face mask and keep 2 metre distance from others.

DFE Guidance
As schools return to full attendance, we understand parents’ frustration when their child is asked to isolate at home either after testing positive for coronavirus (COVID-19), or because of being in close contact with someone who has tested positive.

However self-isolation is one of the most important things we can do to help stop the spread of the virus and help protect our friends, family and our community. Around one in three people with coronavirus (COVID-19) have no symptoms, and so finding and isolating these hidden cases quickly will help to stop outbreaks before they get a chance to develop.

If your child has tested positive having been tested using a lateral flow device (LFD) test at school, they do not need a PCR confirmation because these tests are done in a supervised environment. Lateral flow device tests are at least 99.9% specific, meaning the likelihood of a false positive is extremely low – less than 1 in every 1,000. PCR testing will always carry a risk of producing false negatives. At the moment, carrying out LFD tests in supervised conditions and not carrying out confirmatory PCR testing means we capture the maximum possible number of coronavirus (COVID-19) infections during the initial return to school period.

Hopefully, our combined efforts, including engaging in the testing programme, will see a continued and rapid decline in the number of COVID cases in our community and school will be able to return to more normal operation soon. Thank you for your support.

It has been lovely having students back in our school, though some have returned with a variety of adornments! The following are NOT school uniform:

  • False eyelashes
  • Acrylic nails
  • Jewellery including earrings, bracelets, rings, nose studs
  • Trainers
  • Air pods

I appreciate that students have had the opportunity to add ‘decoration’ to their person during lockdown, but my high standards of presentation in school have not changed. Students not wearing their uniform correctly, will be challenged and items will be confiscated. These are the school rules that all students and families signed up to when they chose The Kingsway School for their son or daughter.

During lockdown, there was a considerable effort to reconnect students with their exercise books so that their learning journey can continue at home as it was in school. Please make sure that exercise books are returned to school in your child’s school bag along with the basic equipment of pen, pencil, ruler, planner plus face mask and small hand sanitizer. We also encourage students to have their own glue stick and coloured pens/pencils to avoid sharing in class.

COVID-19 home testing
Our in-school testing will end on Friday, when we then start the next phase of COVID-19 prevention measures: the home testing of students. Staff are already home testing. To gain the maximum benefit from this approach we need as many families to participate as possible. We are really pleased that, overwhelmingly, families gave consent to the in-school testing programme. 

There is an online form for you to request home testing kits for your child. Although you may complete this anytime, we will need it completed by Wednesday 17th March to ensure kits are handed out this week. Each student will receive enough kits for 3 weeks, with additional deliveries being provided later. We aim to issue these on Thursday and Friday this week. Further information about when and how to test, as well as how to report results will be issued shortly.

If a student tests positive with a home test then they will need to isolate, as will any close contacts. However, they will also need to take a further PCR test, and should this be negative then the period of self-isolation comes to an end. (Please be aware this is not the case with in-school tests). School will need to be informed of any PCR test results.

Our online Enrichment offer has been developing over the Half Term with the reintroduction of the Virtual Enrichment classroom, where departments offer students a variety of activities and opportunities. We are hoping that after Easter we will be able to reintroduce in-school Enrichment activities. The new ‘Enrichment Supporting Wellbeing’ classroom is still available for all students via their Google Classroom and we would encourage students to continue to use this and log evidence to receive merits and certificates.

On Tuesday 2nd March, the full Kingsway Parliament, chaired by Mr Wood and consisting of the Senior Students, House Captains and Student Council Members, met online for the second time, along with guests Mrs Lowe and Mr Knott. This followed a week of Year Council Meetings where all the Student Council Members had the opportunity to meet with Mr Wood to raise any issues they would like to address or discuss. Mrs Lowe and Mr Knott attended the Parliament meeting to respond to student queries and to impart information to the student body about the return to school. Topics on this meeting's agenda included the Canteen, Break Times, Site Management issues, Merit Totals and COVID-19. Students thanked Mrs Lowe and all the staff for all the help and support they have received during the pandemic.

Congratulations to Ghazal G 9N, Imogen D 9T, Esme M 9T, Sarah W 9I, Fatimah N 7S and Henry M 7S who gave an Oscar worthy performance of Matilda in the end of lockdown celebration! The event took place on Friday 5th March to celebrate the achievements of the students who attended the Vulnerable and Key Worker provision in school over the last 8 weeks. Here are some of the winners:

  • Ameila TM's attitude to learning has been excellent. Amelia without exception has been kind and supportive to her fellow classmates.
  • Millie T has shown great enthusiasm for learning and strives to achieve her goals.
  • Lucy W has been an absolute pleasure to have in the classroom, polite, does what is asked of her and a keen learner.
  • Demi B tries really hard and has improved her aptitude for learning over the past several weeks.

Governor focus
Continuing our new series focusing on key people who help keep the school running, this time we are welcoming Sarah Holmes:

My name is Sarah Holmes and I’ve been a Parent Governor at The Kingsway School since June 2018. I have also worked at the school as an exam invigilator since the summer of 2017.

I love the emphasis that The Kingsway School places on the STEM based subjects within the school curriculum; I’m grateful to the teachers at my own secondary school who encouraged me to eventually go on to do a physics degree. I then developed an interest in education myself and trained as a primary school teacher, teaching both in Manchester and also as a supply teacher for a year in New Zealand, while completing studies for a Masters in Maths Education.

I became a mum in 2006 and since then have loved the opportunity to volunteer in my local community in various roles. I am an active member of St. Mary’s Church, Cheadle, where I enjoy playing the piano for services and also helped to run Mustard Seed, their baby & toddler group, in the Upper Room for a number of years. One of my favourite evenings of the Kingsway calendar is seeing and hearing our talented students (and staff!) perform at the annual Christmas Concert in the church! I’ve also been a member of the Patient Participation Group at Cheadle Medical Practice for several years and more recently have started as a volunteer at the Trussell Trust Foodbank held at Trinity Church. I love seeing the involvement our students and staff have in supporting others both in our local community and further afield at our sister school: Kolweny Kingsway in Kenya.

Being a governor combines my interest in education with my love for the local community and I’m looking forward to supporting the school community in whatever ways I can over the years to come.

Dates for your diary

Date Event
Thursday 18th March Year 7 Virtual Parents' Evening, 5-8pm
Friday 26th March End of term

Have a good week, and stay safe and well.

Mrs J. Lowe

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Meet the Team – Class of 2026

Welcome to the Class of 2026! We can't wait to meet you in person.

On this page you will find our Meet the Team video for the Class of 2026. In it, you can hear Deputy Headteacher, Mrs Wardle, explaining the transition journey and sharing information about the school. You will also find our promotional video, a virtual school tour and some of our current Year 7 students sharing their transition experience.

We would strongly encourage all parents and carers to join our closed Facebook group The Kingsway School - Class of 2026 where we will share regular information, up dates and resources to support their child's transition to secondary school.

Don't forget to visit our transition page and if you have any questions, please send these to our transition team:

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Headteacher’s Blog – Week 23

Hooray! The day has finally arrived when we can begin to welcome our students back into school.

There has been a lot of preparation for this moment including creating a one way system around each of our campuses, getting classrooms clean and tidy and training our team of testing volunteers. 

You will have seen a recent communication advising that, with the exception of Year 11, all other year groups will be invited into school to have their test the day before the return to school. This is so we can ensure there are no asymptomatic cases in school. For Year 11, they will now start after the first break, with testing taking place before then. Students and families will be informed promptly of a positive result by the school. We are doing everything we can to keep our school community safe.

Testing is a new feature of the organisation of our school, and we are pleased that we are able to offer it to all our students. However, a negative COVID LFD test is not a licence for students to disregard the guidance. As well, the government has suspended the option of having continuous 7 day LFD testing for any person who is identified as a close contact of somebody with COVID-19. Instead, the previous system of identifying close contacts and then self-isolating for 10 days will apply until further guidance is provided. The country remains under lockdown and restrictions must be adhered to at all times. 

A key component of school safety is the wearing of masks in school. I know that they are not the most comfortable of accessories and that they can make communication that little bit harder. But for now, I believe the benefits outweigh the inconvenience and hopefully by Easter, because we were all compliant with the measures expected of us, we will see school operating as normal. 

It is likely that there will be those families who do not wish to engage with the testing programme, which means we can never be certain that there are no asymptomatic students in school. However, I hope that with the vast majority engaging in the programme we will be more sure than not. 

Likewise, we cannot force students to wear a face mask in school, nor can we exclude them from their education. However, we are hoping that all our students and their parents play their part in keeping our school community safe and follow the expectations we have.

As students return to school please could we make a plea to parents and carers who drop off and collect their children not to park outside of the school, or stand by the gate. In addition to restricting the safety of students who are regularly forced into the road because of parked cars, we need to maintain social distancing as students depart. Please arrange a suitable meeting point, such as the area we negotiated with John Lewis in September, or in a street away from the school. Please also ensure that you are considerate to our neighbours. 

Students are expected to wear their full school uniform on return to school. For students in Key Stage 3, they can continue to wear their school PE kit on days they have PE lessons, to avoid crowding in the changing rooms. I must stress this is school PE kit only and not hoodies for example. Our school behaviour policy will be followed for any students violating our uniform policy.

Most students have not been in school since Christmas, and they may well have received electric or e-scooters as presents. These are not allowed on school grounds, and therefore it is pointless students using them to come to school. The police have informed us that they need to be insured in the same way as a motorbike or car, and some youngsters have had them confiscated as a result.

When they return to school, students will notice that our premises team have been working hard. Work has nearly been completed on replacing all our doors with new doors that meet fire regulations and we have refurbished our Foxland library into a new Learning Resource Centre to cater for up to 100 students. This space will build upon the skills that students and staff have developed in learning online.

Someone who has been making the most of remote working is Art teacher, Miss Stendall who has created this fabulous virtual art exhibition

Congratulations to Bastian B in Year 9 who achieved a SILVER award in the school’s Maths challenge. As the youngest entrant he did really well, scoring second highest for the school.

Keeping students safe in all aspects of their life is something that The Kingsway School is deeply committed to. Whilst we were unable to run our usual workshops, last week we did complete an online Risky Business Week. During the week students were given access to assemblies surrounding topics that are covered in the PSHE curriculum. These include prejudice, harmful language, identity, drugs and alcohol, healthy relationships, managing money, loans, housing and antisocial behaviour. Our PSHE curriculum will continue to support students’ understanding in these matters. Many thanks to everyone who contributed and participated in these sessions.

We also celebrated World Book Day on Thursday 4th March with a number of competitions to enter. 'The Masked Reader' was a popular form time competition, where English teachers read the blurb to their favourite novel, whilst in disguise, and students had to guess each teacher. Whilst nobody was able to get 'full marks', a number of forms and students came close and will receive extra merits and a prize upon our return to school.

Our annual 'Battle of the Books' has commenced, although in a virtual format this year. The deadline to enter has been extended to Friday 12th March. Pick your favourite novel and create a recorded speech or performance, persuading the judges to select your novel as the winner of the Battle of the Books! Send your recordings to either Miss Dean at or Miss Halligan at The winner will be announced on Monday 15th March, with a prize and certificate.

As we were not able to celebrate World Book Day in a face-to-face manner, we are extending the whole of March as World Book Month. Years 7 & 8 have book vouchers ready for collection in form rooms and years 9-11 have free books to collect from the school library. There will be upcoming competitions shared in school and in our online library throughout March.

Last week, we were delighted to welcome our next generation of Kingsway learners and their families and are thrilled that we are oversubscribed again. Whilst we know from the many messages to the school that some families were disappointed that they have not been allocated a place at The Kingsway School, we would urge them to contact their Admissions Team at their Local Authority and we hope that they will be able to work with them to resolve their queries. If you were successful in your application and you feel you don’t yet know the school very well, please have a look at the school website on Thursday, where a ‘Meet the Team’ recording will be released by the Transition team, ahead of the April Welcome Evening, and don’t forget to join the Facebook closed group for the Class of 2026

Over the next few weeks, we are introducing a new feature to my blog in which we hope to introduce you to some new faces, and refamiliarise you with some longer standing staff members and governors. This week we are introducing parent governor, Kathrine Chow.

Kathrine Chow - Parent Governor

“It is my pleasure to introduce myself to the children, staff and parents within the Kingsway School family. My role within the Governing Body is Parent Governor. This role is a new role for me having started in the Autumn Term of 2020. I am excited about what the role of Parent Governor will bring and I hope I will have a positive impact within the Governing Body Team. 

I work as a Teacher at Gatley Primary School and have taught in Primary education for almost 15 years. Education is a passion of mine and I am keen to learn more about how children learn and develop once they leave Primary Education and begin their Secondary learning. 

I have previous experience of being a Governor on two Governing Bodies at previous schools: once as a Parent Governor and once as a Staff Governor. Both of these roles provided me with experience of all the factors a Governing Body oversees within a school. I found these experiences incredibly fulfilling and for that reason, I was keen to undertake this role once again in a new school. 

My son started in Year 7 at The Kingsway School in September of 2020 and has been really enjoying his time at school so far. I was keen to be involved as a Parent Governor so I could not only join him on his journey throughout his secondary education but have a real influence on the experiences he would have at secondary school too. The role Governors have is to set the strategic direction of the school and be a critical friend. I feel very lucky to get to work so closely with wonderful children and staff at the school. It is a very exciting time at The Kingsway School as we embark on our new journey within the Education Learning Trust (ELT). It is a superb opportunity to build upon current links with other Primary Schools within the trust and in the local area who feed into The Kingsway School and create a positive learning pathway for children.”

Dates for your diary

Date Event
Thursday 11th March Meet the Team Year 6 Parent Welcome Evening
Thursday 18th March Year 7 Virtual Parents' Evening, 5-8pm
Friday 26th March End of term

Have a good week, and stay safe and well.

Mrs J. Lowe

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