Its been an amazingly busy two weeks since we returned from half term. Last half term we were incredibly proud of our students in the way they settled and helped to make the Academy a great place to learn.

On their return, students brought with them their excellent ‘Planets’ homework and we were incredibly impressed with the effort and ingenuity showed by our students. Congratulations to all our students, especially our class and overall winners. You can see a gallery of their work here.

We have now started our Journeys theme and with the student portal up and running, you can find a summary of what they will be learning here. In addition, as we are exploring journeys, we are looking at our student’s world Geography knowledge and undertaking weekly tests on different areas of the world. Well done Sienna who scored highest in our latest test.

Away from the classroom, students have been involved in a number of charity events. On Monday we celebrated Remembrance Day with a special assembly and a two minutes silence. On Friday we undertook some Children in Need activities with the Academy raising £421.65, this included a special donation by Mr Reeves and a superb cake made by Mariska.

We are also working in partnership with the Albion foundation in their Beat the Bird challenge, students are undertaking their own fundraising for this community project. Finally in form time we looked at some activities in support of Anti Bullying week.

Last week some of our students took a trip to The University of Birmingham for the launch of Debate Mate, a programme designed to teach them formal debating skills. The motion was “This House Believes Parents Should be Punished for the Crimes of Their Children” and featured a show debate from experienced debaters. We then had our first session with our university mentors.

In Journalism Club our students interviewed the BBC reporter and journalist Helen Catt. You can find out more in the student blog where the students have written up their experience.

Our Girls and Boys football teams have been in action. The Boys just narrowly losing to Oldbury Academy but the undefeated girls taking a good win against George Salter Academy. Unfortunately, the girls tournament was rained off. In other football news we have drawn the students going to Manchester United trip on the 12th December.

With all students now having their laptops, we ran an e-safety information evening on Wednesday. Many of the parents who attended commented on how useful it was. We are going to look to distill the information and send it to you in the next week or so as internet safety is so important.

On Thursday we had a visit from 15 school leaders from Eastbourne who had come to see how we run our curriculum. “They said they were wowed by the atmosphere and philosophy of the campus and that it was a privilege to see such an outstanding school in action.”

Finally, on Friday the Brain Trust group tested out the Academy Escape room which has been put together by Miss Gardner. This will now be available for teams to try their best to decipher the challenging puzzles which have been put together.

This is a huge amount in two weeks and speaks to how we are striving everyday to make the Academy a place of opportunity for the students. In the next couple of weeks, we have the Academy Theatre School performance at the Hippodrome, our Family Forum and we will be preparing to welcome all those who have applied to come to the Academy next year for aptitude testing.

I look forward to seeing you all next week.

George Faux