Here are some extracts from the end of term newsletter which highlight some of the exciting new developments are Brynteg School.
We are pleased with the way in which our pupils have responded to this major initiative this year and have already made plans to add more activities suiting a wider range of interests. Our aim is to create time during the week where pupils and staff can relax, away from the pressure of examinations and so on. To a certain degree, the actual activity which is undertaken is irrelevant, in that it is the time with the lack of emphasis on results which is important but we are working hard to ensure that pupils have more success in the choices that they make.
If you feel that you can help us in any way by providing an activity or by helping out with some of our existing activities, please contact us at the school.
We are aware that our current system of reporting needs updating to ensure that the learning needs of all of our pupils are reflected accurately in them. For example, at the present time, the grades of the pupils who have really put in a great deal of effort into their work do not seem to reflect this. Similarly, those pupils who are ‘coasting’ are not accurately identified. A new report is in the final stages of development and will be introduced throughout the first term.
At Brynteg, we recognise that the form tutor plays a crucial role in the school experience of pupils in his/her form. At the moment, there is no formal communication channel between the form tutor and home and we feel that this is missing an important opportunity. During the new academic year, all parents and carers will be invited to 2 review meetings with their son/daughter’s form tutor. It is very much hoped that these meetings will be led by the pupil with support from the tutor and it will give all present the opportunity to discuss areas of strength and areas for development. These meetings will be in addition to the subject-based parent/carer evenings.
The learning and teaching structure
Over the past few months, we have been working on developing the school in order to ensure that we have the structure in place to meet with the demands of our 21stCentury learners.
The school is now organised into 6 learning clusters as follows:
Health, Wellbeing and Wider Learning Cluster Leader Mr David Ince
(PE, PSE, Skills Challenge, Careers, Work-related learning)
Expressive Arts Cluster Leader Mrs Shirley Pearson
(Art, Drama, Music and Digital Competence)
Languages, Literacy and Communication Cluster Leader Mr Chris Jones
(MFL, Welsh and English)
Science and Technology Cluster Leader Mrs Nicola McCarthy
Humanities Cluster Leader Ms Nicola Lane
(Geography, History, RS, Sociology, Psychology, Business and Economics)
Maths and Computer Science Cluster Leader Mrs Deb Kinsey
Each Cluster Leader is supported by a number of Learning Coordinators. In the new academic year, my weekly blog will focus on each cluster in turn where more information will be made available at that point.
In addition to redesigning the staffing structure, we have taken the opportunity to reorganise the layout of school to ensure that all learning clusters are situated together, helping to develop learning experiences and hopefully reducing the need for pupils to move so far around school. Welsh and MFL are moving to the lower school site (known as the Languages, Literacy and Communication Centre from September) and Geography, Business and Economics are moving in to the upper school site (Humanities Centre).
Wellbeing and Reception Centre
Work is due to begin during the summer holidays on redeveloping the current languages block into a Wellbeing and Reception centre. This will become the reception area for the school with parents, carers and visitors accessing this through the bus bay (off Ewenny Road) during the school day (there will be no access via Heol Gam/Brynteg Gardens during the school day). Also included in the new centre will be a pupil reception, first aid and medical facilities, a base for all year leaders and members of the pupil support team, the school counsellor, careers and so on. New automatic barriers will be installed on the Heol Gam and Ewenny Road/Brynteg Gardens entrances which will be operated from the new centre. It is hoped that this will significantly improve the way we control access to the site in terms of safeguarding and also provide a much better and more efficient service to pupils, parents, carers and visitors.
The work is due to be completed by the end of the first half term and I will write with further details about these changes nearer the time.
Building work is due to start soon on another exciting development which will see the Eastern Safeguarding Hub being based at Brynteg. Over 40 social workers, youth workers and Educational Welfare Officers will be based in the hub when it is complete (scheduled for March 2020). This will move us closer to being the central hub for the community which we aspire to be and also improve our ability to draw on the wide range of expertise contained within this team.
After much deliberation, we have decided to move to using the Google ecosystem from September. In the first instance, it will be our new year 7 pupils and years 10 and 12 who will have their accounts fully provisioned with the remainder quickly following on from this. We intend to use Google Classroom as a means for setting and receiving homework and this combined with the SIMS Parent and Student apps will allow us to ensure that all pupils, parents and carers have access to all of the homework information which is required.
Our photo of the week show the English department and 60 of year 9 pupils just setting off for Belgium on Wednesday for a WW1 Battlefields tour – another example of the many opportunities on offer at Brynteg School.