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Headteacher's Blog 35 - Friday 22nd June 2018

Well done Year 11!

A huge well done to our Year 11 students who have now completed their GCSEs! We’re looking forward to seeing you at your Leavers’ Assembly next Tuesday at 2.30pm! 


Pre-Public Exams

Year 11 might have finished their GCSEs but now it’s time for Years 9 and 10 to take their Pre-Public Exams (PPEs)! The PPEs are taking place from Tuesday until Friday 6th July and you can find the exam timetable here (please note there has been a slight change to this timetable from the version that was published last week). 


Were you a local hero?

We were contacted this week by a lady who wanted to trace and reward local heroes attending our Academy! 

Mrs Lindley informed us that some boys wearing our Horbury Academy uniform found her purse two weeks ago and handed it into the chemist on Cluntergate and in doing so it has found its way back to her! 

If you are the hero Mrs Lindley would like to thank, please do let me know so I can put you in touch with her. She’s almost as proud as I am of your integrity. 


The Bee’s Knees!...

Before the Easter holidays, Miss Tyrrell and three of her Year 7 students visited Pontefract Castle for the Numeracy Board Game Challenge Final….and won! 

Toby Murphy, Luke Swallow and Joseph Rollin designed a board game, which they named ‘The Bee’s Knees’. The judges loved how many different elements their game had and thought it was an excellent and original idea. 

On Tuesday this week, our winners were visited by Engaging Education who are to make their prototype board game into a real game! What fabulous news, very well done to you all! 



Any used postage stamps to spare?...

You may remember me telling you about some of our students starting a used postage stamp collection in the LRC to donate to a local gentleman for his charity collection in Horbury Library? Well, they have collected a fantastic amount and will soon be handing them over, so this is one last plea for any more stamps to be donated to our LRC next week…. and a big thank you to everyone who has donated so far! 


Y Viva Espana!

Lucky Year 9 students jetted off to Barcelona on Wednesday as part of their language and humanities studies! They’ve been busy visiting some of the famous landmarks and attractions such as the Nou Camp stadium, Sagrada Familia, the Parc Güell, Poble Espanyol and the Gothic Quarter. They return tomorrow so I’ll be sure to include some photos in next week’s blog! 


Go Higher in Healthcare

Day work experience placements are available this summer as part of the Go Higher in Healthcare project, for qualifying students aged 16 and over - it’s a great opportunity to gain valuable work experience in the healthcare sector….If you’re interested, speak to Mrs Jones in the Academy. 


Keep your loved ones safe online

In order to reduce the online risks to teenagers, it’s important that parents and carers engage with their children and are aware of the simple measures that are available to stay safe online. 

Our e-safety page offers advice and guidance on how to activate parental controls on home internet connections, games consoles and social media sites. Find out more here.   


A beautiful transformation!

Students in our LRC are taking part in a butterfly project, since we received five caterpillars in school earlier this month. 

They have monitored their progress on a daily basis and today they watched them transform into Painted Lady Butterflies!



Our Young Chefs of the Year!…

Written by Mrs Stevens and Mrs Penny 

Students on the Hospitality and Catering course have had success this week at Kirklees College’s Young Chef of the Year Final. 

Over the past eight weeks, Samantha Kershaw, Emily Kemshell and Callum Thorley have taken their recipes to the heats (through which they sailed!), attended a masterclass held by the chefs at the college, and produced some stunning desserts in the final this week. They also practiced hard for the technical challenge of profiteroles. 

All three students did themselves and the Academy proud and we would like to thank them for all their hard work. We know they’ve had a very rewarding experience and gained so much knowledge in the kitchen. 

Well done to you all…and a special mention to Samantha who achieved third place for her cheesecake!



Mini Olympics

Last Friday, Ms Beaumont organised an athletic event at Thornes Park for Year 5 and 6 students in our feeder primary schools. The students took part in track and field events and finished with team relays. The winning school was Horbury Primary, with St Peter's in second place. Ms Beaumont tells me the students worked very hard and showed enthusiasm, leadership skills and teamwork.



International Sun Day

I’ve been asked to let you know about an "International Sun Day" event taking place at the Rosse Observatory in Pontefract this Sunday, 11am to 4pm. It’s a free event providing an opportunity to; look at our nearest star safely through solar telescopes, see a demonstration of a Lunar Rover, and make and launch your own rocket. Find out more at



Standards for Success

You may have seen on the news this week that Ofsted’s Chief Inspector is encouraging a ban on mobile phones in schools, saying they distract students in class, make the challenge of low-level disruption worse and make teachers' jobs harder. 

This news comes at a time when we, as a Multi Academy Trust, have taken the decision that no mobile devices should be seen or heard at any point during the Academy day - this includes mobile phones, headphones, speakers, consoles, smart watches, tablets and any other ‘smart’ device. 

The internet, social media and messaging has created huge distractions to students and has caused a multitude of problems in the school day through inappropriate use. With attention on learning in the classroom and communicating face to face at social times, the need for mobile devices is minimal. Exam board regulations around possession of ‘smart’ devices are rigorous and the importance of not relying on ‘Google’ or ‘Wikipedia’ for completion of classwork is ever increasing, where internet access is needed this will be arranged/permitted by Academy staff. 

With this is mind, from September, there will be zero tolerance on the use of mobile devices throughout the Academy day. Any devices that are seen or heard will be confiscated, with any refusal to comply resulting in a student receiving a C5. 

To help with this transition, we are expecting students to begin to take this on board from Monday (25th June). The current arrangements of a C4 detention issued for mobiles and earphones seen on corridors or in classrooms will remain in place until the end of this academic year. In the atrium area and at social times students will be asked to put devices away, with a reminder that there will be zero tolerance in September. 

We understand that you may wish your child to have a mobile phone, particularly for travelling to and from the Academy, but during the day these must be switched off and put in bags. We can take no responsibility for any loss of damage of devices brought onto the Academy site. If you need to get an urgent message to your child, we ask that you now phone the Academy. 

Thank you in advance for your support in this matter. 


Uniform update…

Since last week’s uniform evening, we have continued to talk with our suppliers and I am pleased to report that Trutex have revised their price list for skirts and trousers, which now start at £17.99 and £18.99 respectively. Depending on families’ circumstances, the Academy may be able to help reduce these prices further on an individual basis. 

From messages and queries received, I can confirm that we do not receive any commission from our suppliers, but we do encourage them to set their prices as low as they are able. I can also confirm that there are no changes to any other item of the Academy uniform and in particular, there are no plans to bring in branded shirts or blouses. 


Brilliant Bronze!

Congratulations to the following students who have received Bronze Awards this week; Ella Medlock, Anam Hussain and Matthew Huskins.



Stunning Silver!

This week I also got to present Silver Awards to; Mollie Riley, Darcy-Jo Bullen, Malikah Hussain, Leon Bradshaw, Edward Hill, Lucy Blezzard-Smith, Yasamin Nasimi, Hollie Bradbury, Hamza Mirza, Lucy Squires and Holly Ambler.



Glorious Gold!!

I was very pleased to present another Gold Award this week! Congratulations Tori Baldwin, Amelia Miller, Evie Mansfield-Smith, Olivia Richardson and Amy Cook.



Headteacher’s Award!!

I also had the pleasure of presenting a Headteacher’s Award to Harry Hibbins.



PiXL Perfect!

Well done to; Summer Auty, Jackson Dennis, Max Drew, Lialla Ahmed, Jasmine Hampshire, Amy Lou Roberts, Madeleine     Wilkinson, Luke Emmerson, Eloise Paull, Dylan Sanderson, Luke Spaven, Joseph            Hoyland, Jane Chambers, Holly Ambler, Abigail Sockett, James Thickett, Harvey-Joe Walker, Emily Hall and Holly Ambler.


Marvellous Mathematicians!

Congratulations to the following who also received their Intermediate Mathematical Challenge certificates this week… Lucy Squires and Sophie Kershaw.



Mouth-watering menus!

For the second consecutive week, our Catering Team have come up with some delicious World Cup themed menus!! Take a look at what’s on offer next week... 



End of term arrangements…

As always at Horbury Academy, the end of term is a busy one! Please check the following information carefully so that you are clear about what’s going on….

  • Monday 25th June: Year 10 East Coast Visit
  • Tuesday 26th June: Year 11 Leavers' Assembly
  • Thursday 28th June: Pyramid Music Day and Year 11 Prom
  • Friday 29th June: Year 9 Enterprise Challenge Day Competition
  • Wednesday 4th July: Year 10 Taster Day - Wakefield College
  • Monday 9th July: Year 7 Belgium trip (Asia and Europe)
  • Tuesday 10th July: Year 6 Taster Day, Year 6 Welcome Evening, Year 7 Belgium trip (Asia and Europe) and Year 7 visit to Yorkshire Sculpture Park (Americas and Africa)
  • Thursday 12th July: Year 5 Taster Day, Year 10 Taster Day - Ossett Sixth Form, Year 7 Belgium trip (Americas and Africa) and Year 7 visit to Yorkshire Sculpture Park (Asia and Europe)
  • Friday 13th July: Year 10 Taster Day - Pontefract New College
  • Tuesday 17th July: Year 10 Tie Award Assembly
  • Thursday 19th July: Year 9 London Visit and whole Academy bike-a-thon charity event
  • Friday 20th July: Non-uniform day. Students will enjoy an International Celebration and final assemblies. The day will end at 12.15 p.m. 


And finally…

Our very own Lyla Hodson has been selected out of many performers across the county to perform at the National Theatre in London next week! Well done Lyla…be sure to cherish this wonderful opportunity! 



Well done to Abigail Pitman and Lucy Blezzard-Smith for successfully completing the Cancer Research Pretty Muddy run last weekend! From the photos it looks like it lived up to its title!...




On Wednesday, students from years 7, 8 and 9 competed in an athletics event at Thornes Park, where all students represented their school proudly and some Horbury students managed to bring home medals!....Michael Flood took first place in shot put, Paige Watson won the 1500m, Harry Balesteros achieved silver in the 400m, and Louie Miller came second in the high jump…the list goes on! Well done to every athlete that took part!