End of Year Letter from Mr. Young

24th July 2019

Dear Parent/Guardian

I would like to thank you all for your ongoing support throughout this academic year. As a school we continue to grow in strength and continue to develop and deliver our ethos of Everyone Matters, Everyone Helps and Everyone Succeeds.

As we wait for the results our young people have achieved in public examinations once again, we consider that we have had a successful year, with students achieving success in the academic, the sports, the arts and drama as well as in a number of community projects. Once again, we have been committed to delivering a broad and balanced approach to education that supports our young people in having the opportunity to contribute to both the school and the wider community.

We have received excellent coverage of our work both locally and nationally and this is a credit to staff, students and parents who have all worked to support young people in making good progress and achieving success.

To continue our development as a school we are working on improving student progress by focusing on simple strategies that can impact on all our students. Nationally boys achieve less well than girls and this is true within our school. To start to address this we will expect all students to complete all the required tasks the teacher has set to the appropriate standard before leaving the lesson. Failure to complete the work to the expected standard will result in either remaining after the end of lesson at break, lunchtime or at the end of the day. In lessons when this is not an option, students will receive an after-school detention. The simple premise is working harder and completing more work will make students better placed to gain more knowledge in order to revise and prepare for their exams.

Next year we will also introduce assessment fortnights where Key Stage 3 students will be assessed by exams to show how much they have learnt and progressed in the various subject curriculums. This will support students in understanding their progress as well as developing the skills and resilience to be better prepared for public examinations and reducing stress levels due to being better equipped to deal with the challenge all students face at the end of Year 11 and Year 13. This will be combined with a more detailed reporting system that will support parents and students in understanding how students can improve their development of knowledge and understanding.

A key whole school focus in all lessons will be a drive on developing academic vocabulary. Alongside this, homework at KS3 will be based largely on reading focused subject related articles to build knowledge and understanding. As the reading age for GCSE exams has increased to 15.6 years, it is clear that regular reading practice and the development of better vocabulary is one simple way that we can improve student access and performance across the curriculum. We are looking for our community to support us in this aim with all parents ensuring students read the articles and complete the short tests based on them. The articles for the first term for Years 7, 8 and 9 will be available from the start of September 2019. I am sure we can count on every parent’s support in implementing and supporting this simple and effective approach.

As always, we will focus on high standards of behaviour, the attitude of our students, uniform and equipment. Our focus on the school ethos of Everyone Matters, Everyone Helps and Everyone Succeeds has seen a 35% reduction in the school’s exclusion rates in this academic year as well as more students receiving more praise and rewards than ever before.  We again look to our community for support with instilling the values that underpin the school ethos of ‘Everyone Matters – we expect everyone to be polite and respectful;  Everyone Helps – we expect our community to make good choices and Everyone Succeeds – we expect everyone to work hard’. I would also like to thank parents for supporting the school’s behaviour system and our insistence on after school detentions, as this is a key way to reinforce the importance of high standards of behaviour and personal responsibility.

I am proud that Rainford High delivers a fully rounded approach to education that allows students and staff to succeed across a wide range of activities and opportunities and would like to thank students and parents for making it possible by their support of the vision and ethos of the school. The whole school team is excited about the coming year and looking forward to making it even better for everyone involved.

 

Yours faithfully

Ian Young

Principal