I write to you as one of the most intense half terms in my memory has drawn to a close and we have said farewell to our cohorts in Years 11 and 13. Our staff have been busy producing and marking assessments for the exam groups as well as preparing the leaving events and ensuring students are prepared for the next phase in their education. Alongside this the rest of the school has moved along as ‘normal’ adapting to the slight change in our expectations around face coverings, running charity events and taking part in careers week.
Best wishes to our exam cohorts
Both Year 11 and 13 had their final day with us today and said their goodbyes. Emotions were running high but there was a general feeling of euphoria and accomplishment amongst both Year Groups as the half term drew to a close. The Year 11 shirt signing was a lovely event and encapsulated how amazing our community is in a single moment. There were smiles, tears, memories but above all a sense of having made it against adversity. We will, of course, welcome many of our students back into our 6th form for their induction week after half term and to start their new courses in September but to those moving in a different direction, we wish them the very best in life.
The Year 13 leavers assembly was equally as emotional. As a record breaking cohort at Derby Moor our leavers have certainly experienced the highs of success as well as the challenges that the last 2 years of study have thrown at them. Having endured 2 periods of school closure, adapting to remote learning, dealing with the uncertainty of what exams would look like this year and being assessed again and again and again this half term, they have shown dedication, agility and resilience. All of which are the attributes of highly employable adults. Speaking to them today I asked them to be brave as they enter the next phase of their lives, to never settle for mediocrity and dare to dream of greatness.
Year 11/13 Provision
Online provision will begin for students in Years 11 and 13 after the half term break. Activities will be uploaded to Show My Homework and students will shortly receive a communication detailing what the 3 weeks of provision after the holiday will look like for them. As we have students moving onto different pathways there are different activities for each student to prepare them for the next stage in their educational career, be it sixth form, college, university or the world of work.
Student Leadership Team and Fundraising
In last week’s update I detailed how our Student Leadership Team were aiming to raise funds to help those in crisis in the Middle East. I have to say that they, along with our student body, have done an amazing job, raising £2337.88 so far which is likely to increase beyond £2500 once they have collected the rest of the donations. This is an amazing achievement and shows how capable our young people are when they set their minds to a task. Alongside this they have been reading the letters our students have written to our local MP about the crisis. We have had hundreds of letters submitted and our students leaders have packaged them up with a covering letter, ready to send off.
Thank you for your support with our uniform expectations this term. The standards across the school are markedly better since the stores have reopened and we are now only dealing with a very small number of students who are not coming to school dressed correctly. If there are challenges for you as a family to provide the correct uniform after the half term, please do contact your child’s Year Manager to see how we can support with this.
Duke of Edinburgh
Our DofE team have been excitedly unboxing a host of new equipment this week and both the Silver and Bronze group are preparing for their expeditions. The Silver group will have their practice expedition in the Peak District (18th to 20th June), which will involve them camping, cooking on gas stoves, learning how to walk in the hills and navigation – at some stage there will also be the all-important training of how to walk through a field of cows and sheep. They will undertake their Qualifying Expedition (2nd to 4th July) for their award, which will involve 2 nights of camping and 3 days of walking in the Peak District.
The Bronze Group will be undertaking a #DofEwithadifference weekend, where they undertake an intense training session on day 1, do a practice walk day 2 and then complete a qualifying walk on day 3.
Best of luck to them all.
We will be recruiting for new participants after the May half term holiday.
You may have seen from our twitter feed that we have had a number of employers engaging with our students both in person and virtually this week. It has been a fantastic learning experience for our students and another step towards them becoming highly employable adults. Our thanks go out to all those who given up their time to provide such an enriching experience for our young people, it a reflection of the strength of will and community we have in Derby.
I think we are all ready for a half term and, looking outside across our courtyard it will hopefully be a sunny, warm bank holiday weekend. Our staff will be enjoying time with their families after an intense period at school and I hope our students are able to do the same, particularly those for whom the last couple of days have represented that significant milestone of completing Key Stage 4 or Post 16 study. We have a lot to look forward to in our final half term with transition activities and sports day on the horizon.
I wish you all a happy and restful extended weekend.