Weekly Update - 20th May 2022

Happy Friday to everyone!  As we approach the last week of the first half of the summer term, I am happy, as always, to share the news, events and activities that have taken place in the academy this week.

The exam season has started in earnest, with year 11 students sitting their first examinations in R.E., Biology, English, History and Maths, and year 13 students in Health & Social Care, Child Development, Performing Arts, Maths, Sport and IT.  As always, we wish all students the outcomes that they deserve after their hard work and efforts over the years.  Please remember that there will be additional revision and study sessions over the half-term break.  Specific students that subject teachers feel would benefit most from this will have been informed of these individually, however, if your child has not been specifically invited, but you feel that this would be of benefit to them, please contact Mr Priddle on: [email protected] to make enquiries.

This week, we have also held a series of anti-bullying assemblies, led by Mr Simpson, one of our Student Support Advisors, alongside students from several year groups.  These were very well received and have resulted in many students approaching Mr Simpson to express their interest in becoming involved in future projects and activities, in order to raise awareness of this important issue.

We again enjoyed a visit from our OAT Regional Director this week, who focused on curriculum development and delivery and the quality of teaching and learning in our Maths department.  The feedback and insight from these external visits are always welcomed, considered and taken on board, to support us in continuing to develop and to provide the best possible educational experience for all of our students.

I am also pleased to be able to share with you a positive news story regarding our students’ recent involvement in the “Queen’s Green Canopy Project”, part of the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations.  Well done to all involved!  I believe that student participation in these events is such an important part of their entire educational journey, providing them with additional skills, knowledge and experiences that will benefit them in their future life journeys. Please see the link below to view the news story.

Ormiston Rivers Academy students plant trees to mark Queen’s Platinum Jubilee | Local News | News | Burnham and Dengie Nub News

We continue to work hard to ensure that we have the very best staff possible in specific subject areas to provide excellent teaching & learning to all of our students.  I am pleased to report that we have recruited several new, experienced and enthusiastic staff members to join us in September 2022.  We look forward to welcoming them, working alongside them, and enjoying the additional experience and expertise that they will bring to our staff team.

Thank you to everyone who responded to the recent consultation regarding term-dates for the 2023/24 academic year.   The results of this were overwhelmingly in favour of maintaining a two-week October half-term (74% of respondents preferred this).  Therefore, this will remain.  The full calendar of term dates for 2023/24 will be shared as soon as possible.

I would also like to thank you for your feedback on the revised uniform policy.  As you will be aware, information in this respect has been recently shared with you all.  If you have any queries or concerns, please contact either your child’s Achievement Director, or Mrs Mahoney on: [email protected].

Looking ahead, we have a full refurbishment programme planned for the academy.  This will include complete replacement of all student toilets, which are currently very outdated and in poor condition.  The new designs will provide cleaner and better spaces for students, and will include some gender-neutral cubicles as well as specific male and female toilet facilities.

Finally, and as always, I wish you a happy weekend.