Well, what a hectic term!
Thank you all for your patience and support with the snow days. Hopefully they are all behind us for the remainder of this year and we will have a smooth, uninterrupted Term 5. I would like to extend a huge thank you to the site team who worked flat out ensuring the site was salted and gritted and, therefore, safe.
I must recognise all the staff who gave up their time so freely during the Easter break to support our young people with their GCSE revisión. We had record numbers of students attending and record numbers of staff supporting. As ever PCSA goes ‘the extra mile’ wherever they can.
We continue to develop the site so that it is the best it can possibly be. As students return from the Easter break they will notice building works to the restaurant and the old science block. As our numbers grow to 1500 we are improving the restaurant facilities to accomodtae our growth and refurbishing the old science block into a shiny new Languages and Global Understanding (LGU) Faculty. We hope this will all be ready at the start of the next academic year. We will be having celebrations to mark the opening of the new LGU faculty so watch this space!
I always like to share some good news stories with you all. I would like to say a huge congratulation to hundreds of PCSA students who are thrilled after receiving pen pal letters from their partnership school in Malawi.
Some 200 Year 8 Priory Community School students wrote to children in Mnjiri Secondary School in Mzimba, northern Malawi earlier this year as part of their culture and identity module in English Now they have been excitingly reading their letters written by children in the nation – which is the third most poverty stricken in the world.
We must also wish our Year 8s good luck in their end of year exams. It will be their first taste of sitting GCSE style exams in the main hall. Hopefully by Year 11 it will reduce the stress as they will be used to the process.
Max Corrigan, aged 15, has been doing YouTube videos on Call of Duty by giving a commentary to gamers and he now has nearly 1000 subscribers. Max wants to do it as a full-time career and to study media after he leaves school. He has already secured himself an apprenticeship in this competitive field and has shown that anything is possible if you want something and are prepared to work hard enough to make your dreams a reality. Max really is the epitome of hard work, big dreams and positive thinking!
Finally, Term 5 is our Upper School Charity Term. Please do encourage your children to get their thinking hats on and come up with some really creative fund-raisers. Let’s make it a record year for our Charity of the Year, Ataxia UK.
Very best wishes,
Neville Coles – Executive Principal
Dear Parents and Carers,
I like to write a short update to parents / carers at the start or end of each term – 6 per year. This is placed on our Facebook accounts and placed on all websites for all schools within The Priory Learning Trust (TPLT). Recently, we have received some very good news with regard to capital funding – please see below. We are also predicting some very good outcomes this summer for our children. Two new primary schools have joined the Trust and student numbers are strong. We are doing well. We continue to focus on improving facilities and getting excellent results for all students and families who are part of our Trust.
As you will be aware, our Trustees formally agreed for St Anne’s and Castle Batch primary schools to join The Priory Learning Trust (TPLT) back In February – both schools are in WSM. I am pleased to say that on April 1st both Castle Batch and St Anne’s became academies and formally joined our group, of now, 4 academies. Total student numbers are now at 2,387. It is planned that The King Alfred School, Highbridge (TKAS) and Pawlett Primary (nr. Bridgwater) join TPLT during 2018-19 – at that stage student numbers will be at 4,723. Clearly, staffing is now well above the 250-mark. Through having over 250 employees we have published our gender pay gap figures. We will continue to work on reducing any gender pay gap. However, I am very, very pleased to see we were well below the national average.
One of the reason why we are a MAT is to ensure that we are financially strong and can continue to provide our children with first class facilities. Some very good news, last week was the announcement of the national Condition Improvement Fund bids. This is an annual bidding process direct to central government for capital projects. The Trust received around £1,500,000 to spend on specific capital projects. I think I am right is saying that only 34% of bids were successful in this round. Well done to Martin Kerslake (our Chief Financial Officer) and all those involved with these lengthy and time-consuming bids. Clearly, we were again very successful.
This funding award is in addition to the current work which is ongoing at PCSA and also in addition to the WCSA new toilet project – ‘Water World’ which starts this summer.
PCSA Kitchen Refurbishment: £62,397.00
PCSA Block ‘A’ Water Pipe Replacement: £268,335.00
The King Alfred School Roof Replacement (Phase 1): £1,159,100.00
The only unsuccessful bid was for further improvement to the WCSA roofs – this was for £952,056.00 – this will be appealed. We are very hopeful of success. WCSA had significant funding last year for roofing.
So – we are very pleased. We were also very pleased to see PCSA full with new starters at 300 new Year 7s for next year (there were 370 first choice applications) and Worle increased by 9% to be at 282 in the new Year 7 – great news.
Predicted results in our 11-16 secondary schools for this coming August are very, very encouraging. Staff and students in all years continue to work very hard and make good progress. As you will know we have introduced a modular curriculum system and simple homework routines are in place. It is worth noting again that we are now working towards a 5-year programme of learning involving 19 Learning Cycles at 11-16 level. Principals and school teams have communicated this approach at some curriculum evenings last month. Please be aware we have added a Director of Maths (Mrs. Goddard-Lock) and a Director of Science (Miss Criddle) to work across all schools in the Trust. During T5 and 6 we will continue to work on aligning our systems and processes. This will be especially true about what happens in the classroom and with our modular approach to the delivery of the curriculum. Groups of staff are already working on bringing together a classroom model and behaviour approaches in the secondary phase. Primary and secondary staff are already working together on transition. This type of work is a big part of being part of a MAT. There is no point to this work unless we focus it strongly upon student outcomes.
As always, can I encourage you to follow our schools on Twitter or on Facebook. However, can I please ask you to contact schools directly by e-mail if you need further information or have particular issues to discuss with our school leaders. We pride ourselves on getting back to parents / carers very quickly. Again, thank you for your support in this matter – social media is not the place to ask for answers to specific issues. Staff contact details are on TPLT website and on the individual school websites.
Neville Coles – Executive Principal – TPLT – Neville.firstname.lastname@example.org - Twitter – @nevillecoles
Good luck with all preparations for exams 2018 – SATs, GCSEs and A levels.
Please do get in touch if needed.
Jeffrey Archer launched the Jill Dando News Centre at Priory Community School in Weston, just months after Jill’s old school Worle Community School launched its own.
The centre will now see dozens of students find, write and publish the talents, successes and acts of courage and kindness of thousands of current and former students across the world.
The news centres are inspired by Jill who lived in Weston and became one of Britain’s best and most popular journalists before she died in 1999.
PCSA student Jack Branton, aged 13 currently Editor of the Jill Dando News Centre, interviewed Jeffrey.
Jeffrey said: “Jill was a very very fine lady with a wonderful career ahead of her, and it touches me that she hasn’t been forgotten and that so many people are here today to remember this great lady, because she deserves remembering. She was very special indeed.”
Pabalum Catering, Big Worle, Gould Signs, and PACE were some of the local organisations that helped out with the Centre.
We are now over half way through the year and time is flying. Term 3 was a short term and we really packed lots into it culminating in our amazing school production “Into The Woods”. It was a truly wonderful event full of incredible polished performances and lots of impressed and happy students, parents/carers and families. The Creative Team certainly created some stunning memories leaving me full of pride and admiration for staff and students and ex-students! There were 75 students in the show who all gave immaculate performances every evening. I sincerely meant it when I said in my closing comments that the show was of a professional standard.
Year 7s had a unique experience in following the adventures of Ben Peters as he paddled The Nile from Ethiopia to The Sudan. Using the wonders of technology PCSA were able to track his progress and share some of his amazing journey. We were delighted to welcome Ben back to PCSA to meet our Year 7s during their assembly.
This term is again another five-week term and will be the usual action packed one that we have come to expect at PCSA. Supporting the excellent teaching and learning there will be many exciting opportunities for students to enrich their learning. Already in week 1, students have been down to Devon to take part in a Tourism Takeover Day, visited Filton Airbus to take part in a Robotics Challenge and secured ‘Best Presentation’ Award, and attended a NHS Careers Evening!
I was delighted to see 153 Year 11 students attending our bespoke science intervention evening. It was incredibly positive and we plan to hold ones in maths and RE at the students requests over the next two terms. A huge thank you to all the staff who supported this and the students who showed great maturity in attending and engaging. I can confirm that I now have an account set up at a very well-known pizza delivery company and we will be celebrating at the end of these sessions with pizza for all! We will also be holding Easter School for Year 11 and some Year 10 students. So, as long as students ask for this we will be happy to oblige – we are always be happy to go the ‘extra mile’ here at PCSA.
National careers week starts on Monday 5th March with lots of visiting Colleges, employers and previous students booked to meet our students. Additionally, The Big Bang Science Fair will visit the Tropicana in April giving students a taste of STEM opportunities. Year 10 students will be taking part in work experience, college taster days and mock interviews.
For further information please contact James Wilmott at PCSA Careers Faculty.
We are always striving to improve outcomes and I look forward to meeting many of you at our Year 8 Parents Evening, and our Curriculum Information Evenings for parents and carers on Thursday 8th March for current Year 8 students, and Thursday 15th March for Years 9 and 10.
As always, thank you for your continued support in the PCSA community. As ever please do feel free to contact me via e-mail or phone if you have any issues you wish to discuss.
All Year 9 students will be offered the Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio booster (Td/IPV) and Meningitis ACWY (MenACWY) on the 6th March 2018 in the Main Hall.
The Department of Health recommends that all young people receive booster vaccinations to fully protect them into adulthood against the above diseases.
A consent letter and a leaflet containing further information about the boosters will be sent home with your child this week via their tutor. Please sign and return to Student Services by the 5th March 2018.
An update from Mr. Coles – Executive Principal
Dear Parents and Carers,
I am delighted to announce that this week our Trustees formally agreed for St Anne’s and Castle Batch primary schools to join The Priory Learning Trust (TPLT). Both are excellent primary schools within our town. Both will bring much to the Trust and both will greatly assist with our transition programmes in particular. A warm welcome to St Anne’s and Castle Batch schools and all parents / carers, staff, governors and students. Therefore, from April, there will be four schools within our Trust and, as such, there will be 3,397 children within TPLT family. The TPLT key aims are simply remembered by GO PLT; great Governance, great Outcomes, great People, Limited Growth and Team Building. All are equally important but, rest assured, we are absolutely focussed on outcomes for our children in our community – all 3,397 of them.
On Thursday, March 1st we will know exact numbers of new students joining the Trust this coming September. We already know that PCSA’s first choice applications are up by 9% and WCSA’s first choice applications are up by 14%. This is very good news and will allow the Trust and its schools to continue to be financially strong. One of the reasons to form a Multi-Academy Trust (MAT) is to protect our schools in turbulent financial times.
TRAIN AS A TEACHER ?
10 places now filled.
10 additional staff members will be working across the Trust next year …
Can you assist in publicising this opportunity?
The Priory Learning Trust (TPLT) Teaching School Alliance has a further 23 teacher training places for September 2018.
Train as a teacher from September 2018?
Director of TPLT – email@example.com
Degree is needed.
Again, can I encourage you to follow our schools on Twitter or on Facebook. However, can I please ask you to schools directly by e-mail if you need further information or have particular issues to discuss with our school leaders. We pride ourselves on getting back to parents / carers very quickly. Again, thank you for your support in this matter – social media is not the place to ask for answers to specific issues. Staff contact details are on TPLT website and on the individual school websites.
Thank you for your continued support of The Priory Learning Trust (TPLT). Both Priory and Worle break for the end of Term 3 this coming Friday, February 9th. We return on Monday, February 19th for Term 4.
Neville Coles – Executive Principal – TPLT – Neville.firstname.lastname@example.org - Twitter – @nevillecoles
The OfSTED/DfE Curriculum review revealed that breadth and depth of curriculum at KS3 is a concern:
• The curriculum should be broad and balanced and a rich experience to develop knowledge, understanding and application to best prepare for the future
• The curriculum should be served by exams and should not dictate the curriculum
• A good school curriculum should lead to good results. What is the body of knowledge that a student needs so that they flourish in the future
We have also found at PCSA that some students struggle to choose options when they are only part way through Year 8. They have only spent 8 terms in school and they are making choices that may impact on their future opportunities. At this point students will have completed 6 out of 19 learning cycles that they will take part in during their five year journey at PCSA. Furthermore, exams taken at the end of Year 10 have not always allowed students to show their full potential in a particular subject.
To this end PCSA want students to thrive on this five year journey through school – KS2 to KS4, giving them the opportunity to really embrace the right option choices and to further improve their outcomes. We are passionate about our students leaving PCSA on the right pathways to a secure future.
It is our intention that from September the curriculum structure will change as follows:
• Our students in Year 9 will continue to study the range of subjects from Years 7 & 8
• The time spent in Year 9 lessons will be preparing them for the study necessary should they choose to specialise in that subject for GCSE
• Some students may be offered an intervention pathway through Year 9 depending on need. This will be decided on an individual basis to ensure the right support is in place
• Therefore, specialisms will start at the beginning of Year 10 and continue over two years
Essentially, students will select three specialist subjects – for the majority of students this will be 2 subjects that are included in the English Baccalaureate (geography history or a modern foreign language) and 1 other subject, such as art, drama, music, DT, PE and others, with some of these available as courses leading to a less academic, vocational qualification.
Our Current Year 9
For our students who are already on option courses that were due to be completed at the end of Year 10 these will now complete at the end of Year 11. I fully expect this to have a positive impact on the final grades they are awarded. RE was due to be examined at the end of Year 10. This will also move to be examined at the end of Year 11.
Year 9 students will, in the next two months, choose another course to start at the beginning of Year 10, which will be completed at the end of Year 11.
As a forward – thinking school, we are planning what is taught, how it is taught and how it is assessed for a student on a five year journey school.
The PCSA team is focused on making sure that students are building correctly on the knowledge, understanding and skills that students have gained during earlier years. I believe these curriculum changes can only benefit our wonderful student body. We will be holding parent’s information evenings shortly to provide answers to any questions you may have. As ever, I am happy to respond to questions via e-mail or phone should you wish to contact me.
This curriculum will be rolled out across all schools in The Priory Learning Trust over the next two years.
Priory chef Emily Field won the Somerset finals of the Future Chef competition with fellow student Lloyd Chudley finishing fourth.
Now Emily will appear in the South West finals.
Emily plans a career in hospitality and Lloyd wants to be a professional chef.
Emily’s winning dish was Mushroom moussaka with aubergine and a creamy belchamel sauce, served with baked vine tomatoes and side salad. Her top dessert was white chocolate and passion fruit cheesecake, served with raspberries.
Lloyd cooked chicken and leek rustic pie, served with potato wedges, mange tout and baby corn, with lemon mousse cheesecake and blueberries for dessert.
Principal Jane Mcbride said: “This was a tremendous performance in such a competitive competition. Well done to Emily and Lloyd.”
They will act as positive role models and encourage lower years to engage in science – all in their new new £2.5 million state-of-the-art Spencer Science Centre opened a few months ago.
Now they have been given badges and made official Science Ambassadors.
Science teacher Vicky Bush, who is also a Professional Science Ambassadors, said: “These students have been absolutely outstanding, and have actively engaged lower school into the fun side of science.”
PCSA is a high-achieving community school.
This week Priory Community School students and staff congratulated her on the new role.
The 38 year old has a long career in the National Theatre and wrote and appeared in Sky TV’s The Cafe.
Four years ago she was the guest speaker PCSA’s end of year awards where she attributed her success to her Priory tutor while at school in the 1990s.
Michelle Terry said: “The only reason I’m doing what I’m doing in life is because of my Priory tutor. When I told her I wanted to be an actress, she told me not only that I could be, but if I wanted to be, then I must.”
Michelle is one of many ex Priory students achieving remarkable things in performing arts. Jake Fisher has just appeared in the Bristol Hippodrome in the Adam’s Family and Corinne Priest is also in the West End.
You may be aware that The Priory Learning Trust (The PLT) have been asked to work with The King Alfred School (KAS) in Highbridge.
KAS is a 11-19 schools with a sixth form that is growing rapidly.
This Thursday evening, October 5th, at 6pm there is an information at KAS about joining ‘KAS SIXTH’ in 2018.
If you have not previously looked at KAS SIXTH why not come along this Thursday to hear the KAS team talk about the results and choices that KAS can provide.
The monthly hero awards where students are rewarded for acts of kindness at home, school and the community has already generated national interest, but a new project is breaking new ground while saving lives and raising aspirations.
2017′s departing year 11 students were offered FREE lifeguard training as well as paid part time work through the summer and beyond during their free time while progressing at college.
Four students participated in the unique scheme. Chloe Edgar (pictured) said “It has been great experience and I really benefit from the income during my studies at college”.
James Wilmot, Priory’s Head of Careers says “This is such a great opportunity for our students to build their employability skills while earning money and potentially saving lives! We are so grateful to Hutton Moor for the opportunity and look forward to extending the offer to students at Worle Community School this year too. This kind of experience is great for CVs as well as university or apprenticeship applications”.
Dave Somers General Manager says “It has been great to work with the students from Priory Community School on this exciting scheme. We had some very hard working students attend the courses and gain the NPLQ qualification providing them with a stepping-stone to a career as a lifeguard.
It is really important for us to engage with our younger generation and present opportunities for them to gain qualifications and valuable work experience.”
This is a timetable for Yr 11 P0 and P6 Intervention sessions which are open to all Year 11 students. P0 8-8.30am and P6 3-4pm. Please make the most of the support which is made available. Session start this week.
Parents or carers in receipt of the following benefits can apply for the service:
Apply on-line via www.n-somerset.gov.uk/fsm
You will be given a voucher code which you will need to print off and send to Student Services, Priory Community School. Alternatively you can email a copy to email@example.com.
Imogen Cracknell, aged 14, has been selected for the England U18s squad against Wales at Clevedon Bowls Club on 16th and 17th September.
PCSA is a high-achieving school that also encourages its students to Dare to Dream in a wide variety of academic, sporting and performing arts pursuits.
Principal Jane McBride said: “This is a really great achievement for Imogen. She is an outstanding student who is very passionate about bowls.
‘We always try to encourage students to try new things to enrich their learning and Imogen’s sporting success epitomises that.
“We are really proud of Imogen and the school is right behind her England campaign. Go Imogen!”
The book was inspired by the kinds of stories Sophie’s granddad told her as a child.
Over time the adventures featured familiar locations and characters and ‘La La Land’ – location for the story – was developed. – These characters are based on real life people from within the family.
The Purple Juice Tree’ is the first of a series of stories from this land. The second, ‘The Great Globby Slobe’ is due to become available in November.
The book was written, illustrated and edited by Sophie and her husband Thomas.
PCSA is a high-performing Academy Trust that encourages students to go for their dreams.
Sophie said: “This was written as a response to a lack of fun and interesting bedtime stories for 4+ year olds that are an appropriate length for kids and adults to enjoy as part of the bedtime routine.
“This story in particular was written for our 6 year old daughter, Isabelle when she was 4 years old.”
The book is currently available through Amazon and through T.S. Gilbert directly (firstname.lastname@example.org).
On your return to school this year you will see a number of changes to the site that were accomplished over the summer. The Spencer Science Centre is now open to students and is a breath-taking, teaching facility second to none. We have also carried several technology updates, replaced flooring and painted the school just about everywhere! A variety of additional projects were completed this summer, not necessarily visible, all aimed at improving the daily teaching and learning experience for our students and improving the overall experience for families visiting PCSA. PCSA is a vibrant exciting school that never stops evolving!
So much happens at PCSA to continually improve the quality of the teaching and learning in our school. At PCSA we have developed some really great learning habits, like managing mobile phones in lessons with the phone boxes. Habits are important to us as they become routines. It is important that we develop these positive habits so that there is more time for learning. This year we have invested in pencil cases for all students. They have the minimum, essential equipment needed for every lesson and a copy of their personal timetable. The expectation will be students carry these around in their hands as they go from lesson to lesson so they are visible. They do not put them in their bags. In the first few weeks all staff will challenge students every lesson to encourage this. We aim to start learning in each lesson on the buzzer!
Another great and essential habit is that of reading every day. Please do encourage this at home. It is a great way to improve outcomes and as I say every year in assemblies one of the best things you can do is lose yourself in a book. After the success of last year, we will again be investing in the ‘Big Read” this year, where ALL students and ALL staff are given a copy of a novel to read and it is celebrated for a whole week in school. More news on that to follow.
School uniform is important to us at PCSA. Wearing a uniform is a badge of pride, creates an identity for a school and is an important part of being a school student. I believe uniforms show that you are part of PCSA. Wearing it says “we’re all in this together”. Also, if you wear your uniform with pride, it means you are half way there to being respectful, buying into what the organisation is all about. Uniforms give students a sense of belonging to a particular school and create an identity for the school in the community. If you have any queries regarding uniform please do contact your child’s tutor or Head of Year.
Social media and our website is our friend and a key part of school life. Please do take the time to look at our website. There are regular updates and You Tubes throughout the year informing you of events and news. We love to get your positive stories and feedback via e-mail, Twitter or Facebook. There is nothing better than celebrating the successes of our young people and their school. If you do have any issues I ask you to e-mail/phone me or the school directly us so we can deal with any issues as quickly as possible. Thank you for your support with this.
I hope you are as excited about returning to school as I am. We celebrate another year of outstanding results and send warmest wishes to our leavers as they start a new part of their learning chapter. To our newest students, Year 7 2017, I offer you my warmest welcome to this school year. We have a wonderful journey of teaching and learning to walk together. Let’s do so together and be proud of Priory.
Very best wishes,
In terms of the Priory Learning Trust we have now fully welcomed Worle School – an Academy Trust (WCSA). We strongly believe that both St Anne’s and Castle Batch primaries will join the Trust next year. We also hope another secondary school will will join our Trust in 2018. All of this is pending us doing ‘due diligence’. More news in Term 1.
We were again delighted to see the good results at PCSA this August. We were also very pleased to see another 256 new students join PCSA. We had over 350 first choices for our 256 places. I am very pleased to say that from September 2018 we will move the PCSA admission number to 300 in Year 7. This will mean that over time the school will move to 1,500 students. To meet this demand, we will be re-designing and enlarging the restaurant and we will renovate the old science block into 8 new classrooms. You will be aware that the Spencer Science Centre (SSC) will open on Monday. In the first year the SSC will share facilities with our language department (LGU). We move languages to the renovated science block in September 2018.
You may have heard that Michelle Terry (Brown) has been appointed Artistic Director of The Globe Theatre in London – WOW – Shakespeare’s theatre. This is a great accolade for Michelle and we are very pleased to see a former Priory student achieving this level of success in the world of the dramatic arts. On the note of ex-students … we’d like to hear from any Priory ex-student who can provide us with a photograph to inspire students. We are creating ‘walls of success’ going back over the years. PLEASE do not be shy and please help us by sending any e-mail or photographs to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mrs. McBride (Principal) and the whole team at PCSA did a great job last year. During the course of this school year there will be an improved homework system and we will introduce a new modular curriculum. This will help with the demands of the new GCESs. The new ‘modular curriculum’ will have four simple progress reports per year (PCSA had three last year) with an end of school written report from a tutor. The system will have Praising Stars reports and letters. All Priory key dates will be published on the new website and posted here again (please share) to help you over the course of the school year. This will be especially useful for the issuing of progress reports and for parents’ evenings. Please do understand that you can contact the school by e-mail at any time.
• A quick reminder – we have a two-week October break starting. We break at end of school on Friday, October 13th.
• The PCSA restaurant is now being run by Pabullum catering. Meal prices from this September have been reduced with a new very new biometrics system in place. Please let us know by e-mail of nay teething problems.
Our very top priority remains to ensure that all our students are happy and safe at PCSA and they get outstanding exam results.
Thank you for your super support.
Please be aware e-mail is the contact route to PCSA staff not through Facebook.
TOP WINNERS: Chloe Carchrie with mum Victrix Ludorum and Amiee Carchrie Year 7 sportswoman of the year.
Sports Volunteer of the Year Erin Norris with parents
Students at PCSA were rewarded for their sporting achievements throughout the year on a night of celebrations which included a red carpet, student photographers, a visit of Weston’s Mayor Jos Holder, guest speaker and ex Olympic triple jumper, Vernon Samuels and current Exeter Chiefs rugby player Olly Woodburn
There were awards for student stars of Netball, Hockey, Rounders, Cricket, Rugby, Football, Athletics, sports person of the year, male and female sports team of the year and many more.
There were also video message links from England netball captain Ama Agbeze, GB hockey player Helen Richardson-Walsh and Samoan rugby players Kahn Fotuali’l and Tusi Pisi to name a few.
Principal Jane McBride said: “We are big on sports excellence and attitude at PCSA and are delighted to present such outstanding talent with their much-deserved awards.”
Executive Principal Neville Coles said: “As always our students and staff have put together an incredible night of sports awards. We are very proud of them all.”
Head of Faculty Tina Delaney said: “This evening allowed us to show off the talent and dedication of our students and staff at our outstanding school. This was the pinnacle of another successful year for us and to celebrate with our fantastic students and supporting parents was amazing.”
Students have risen to this additional challenge and 68% have achieved a pass in English, 76% in English literature and 75% in maths.
Schools have new key measures to indicate their performance, based on the number of students who gain a pass in English and maths. Some 66% of PCSA students gained an English and maths pass grade 4 or above, with 33% of students gaining an English and maths pass grade 5 or above.
Success stories include Joel Crinson who gained a total of 7 grade 9 or A* grades.
Jane McBride, Principal at PCSA, said, “I am immensely proud of our students and staff. Students at PCSA know just how important these results are to their future. ”They have truly attained excellent results across the board and these are a reflection of the commitment Year 11 have shown throughout their time at Priory. They will all face a bright future with these results to back them up.”
Neville Coles, a National Leader in Education and the Executive Principal of both PCSA and WCSA through The Priory Learning Trust said: “It is great to see both schools in North Worle now doing so well. This year has seen significant changes in the exam system which has produced big challenges for students, staff and parents.
“We are delighted with our outcomes and we will improve again next year. It is worth remembering school is not just about exam results. We are absolutely committed to ensure that at both Priory and Worle we continue our very long tradition of sport, drama, music and trips – such activities are a very important part of what good schools do. We thank parents, carers, governors and all in our community for the great support.”
STEM ambassadors greeted the ambitious students and discussed their work including how they could visit and help out at Priory in the future.
BAE Systems, Hewlett Packard, SpecSavers and South West Nuclear Hub were some of the big-name firms to attend the event.
The ‘Fair’ consisted of University exhibits including research into alien life and spacecrafts while students were also encouraged to learn about the types of research that universities carry out.
Neville Coles, Executive Principal of The Priory Learning Trust which runs PCSA, said: “This was a brilliant event. We want to give students the very best in activities and experiences to help them choose high-flying careers. Maths and science are key areas.
“Students were able to work hands on with demonstrations such as making cells glow under microscopes or making bath bombs to take home, and even dismantling and rebuilding a computer.”
We understand from Mr. Coles (Executive Principal) that from September 2018 the Regional Schools Commissioner has agreed to allow Priory to admit 300 new students, not the current 256 each year.
There will be another 44 places for entry in 2018.
A new 11 classroom ‘Spencer Science Centre’, plus a new restaurant facility and play area are planned for this expansion.
The annual Open Evening at PCSA is Thursday, June 29th for all Year 5s and families.
So please do come along to the evening. Hope to see you Thursday!
Weston students to grow ‘miracle outer-space super plants’ without soil in first UK school hydroponics centre as part of their new £2.5 million science centre
Some 1300 Weston students will get to enjoy a space-emulating unique super-plant-making-without-soil hydroponics centre as part of their £2.5 million new science centre.
PCSA students will have a new Spencer Science Centre complete with Britain’s first school futuristic hydroponics centre at its heart – enabling plants to be grown bigger and better without soil such as is used in space voyages.
The new centre will open in September with 12 futuristic interactive new science labs, two ICT suites, a staff workroom and office all equipped with the latest hi-tech learning kit.
The development comes as The Priory Learning Trust appointed a new Director of Science, Janet Criddle.
Executive Principal Neville Coles said: “This £2.5 million science centre will enable us to further deliver exceptional science lessons for thousands of students in the years to come.
“The icing on the cake is the hydroponic centre, which will give the students something not seen before in a UK school.”
Hydroponic systems remove soil from the plant growing, so plants grow bigger, healthier and reach maturity faster than their soil-grown counterparts.
By removing soil, plants do not work as hard to obtain nutrients, so the plant focuses more on growing upstairs instead of expanding the root system downstairs.”
The building is being named after former Head Teacher Arthur Spencer who is now 95. He was the first Head of Priory some 41 years ago. Before that in World War Two he was the navigator on board the famous Lancaster Bombers.
PCSA is Ofsted outstanding and one of Britain’s best schools.
The inspiring students of PCSA, WCSA, and St Anne’s are joining staff in taking to their schools with litter pickers to blitz plastics into bins, and to rid disposable plastic from the restaurant.
The new school teams are already relentless in making their environments litter free.
They are now on a drive to rid the school of ‘disposable’ plastic, which is causing eight million tonnes of it is ending up in the oceans every year, killing already-endangered marine life and even ending up in the food chain.
Partnering with Pabulum which provides the restaurant and catering facilities at PCSA and WCSA, they will now get rid of plastics in the school restaurant, classrooms and offices.
The actions include:
Filling up at water fountains rather than buying bottles of water.
Getting rid of food condiments
Removing the use of plastic straws.
Children at St Anne’s Primary School are also focussing on a 10 week ‘Who Has The Power?’ campaign to demonstrate the power every child and adult has over removing plastics.
Principal Jacqui Scott of WCSA said: “We want to be a school that leads the way in this. Our students are inspiring and taking direct action to help marine life and our very planet.”
Principal Jane McBride of PCSA said: “At PCSA we are passionate about being proactive with this global issue and fully recognise the fact that we have a duty to try to leave the world a better place for everyone. Small changes can make big differences.”
Principal Lisa Dadds of St Anne’s said: “We are showing every single child the power they have to change the world. This is a strong campaign to rid the world of plastics and we can start with our school.”
Certificates for the 2017 leavers are now available for collection from the Main Reception, daily between 8.30am – 4.30pm.
Children enjoyed face-painting, circus arts, magic, fizz pop science, viewing pets including a giant tarantula, a variety of stalls, a visiting police van and bike-powered smoothie at PCSA.
The school’s 7ft hedgehog mascot Percy PLT was on hand to take selfies with families.
PCSA is again significantly oversubscribed and has had sustained excellent exam performance for many years.
Principal Jane McBride said: “It was lovely to see so many children and their parents, carers and grandparents at this event.”
And all of them were born premature and are miracle babies in their own right.
Incredibly, the mums of Lewis and Ella linked up as mentors in Bristol Royal Infirmary during the time around their birth but lost touch. Then some 11 years later the students found themselves in the same tutor group at Priory, and then discovered they were the premature babies together in the hospital 11 years before.
Now they have all won through a rigorous process to become PCSA’s latest inspirational student leaders.
Principal Jane McBride said: “They are an absolutely brilliant team of student leaders. We are very proud of them all.”
The PCSA students wrote ‘How to Survive and Thrive’ as a survival guide to high school and life in general.
Within weeks of release, the book published by the school’s own innovative Priory Press made number 5 in the Amazon best-seller charts.
Their first book ‘Christmas Stories’ shared the top 10 with Blyton and Dickens in the Christmas bestseller chart.
Head of Careers James Wilmot launched a celebration evening for the authors and their friends and family.
He said: “Our students should be very proud of themselves and it is a great achievement. Everyone has a story to tell and we want to give our students every opportunity to be a published author during their time at Priory. We have the full support of Angela Lauria & Paul Brycock – the world’s most successful author coaches – to help us along.”
Principal Jane McBride said: “Well done to all our students involved in this. We are very proud of them. We take the business of reading extremely seriously and we see books as ‘portable magic’.”
The book’s blurb says: ‘Learn how to overcome the daily obstacles of school life while developing skills in leadership, organisation, resilience, initiative and communication’.
James Cracknell OBE, who won two olympic gold medals in rowing, opened the event and then took part in many of the activities.
The Family Fitness Day was held to encourage families to get fit together and highlight what local clubs and sporting activities are available in the area.
The event raised hundreds of pounds for PCSA’s charity the Bone Cancer Trust.
Organiser Vanessa Mawford said: “This was an amazing event. James Cracknell’s appearance capped off a fantastic day.”
The award was given by Business West and The Local Enterprise Partnership.
Inspectors praised their extended range of activities including entrepreneurship, guest speakers, business enterprise projects, visits to employers, online resources, college taster days, university visits, work experience and more.
Head of Careers James Wilmot brings it all together using his extensive experience in recruitment, community careers advice and further education.
He said: “We are delighted at this award. PCSA is my old school and is a fantastic example of how schools can prepare their students for a lifetime of success.
“Every student leaves Priory with a career plan, work experience, interview skills, a CV and the resilience to make their way in life.”
Now, according to the Weston Mercury this week, house prices are rising near outstanding schools such as Priory. Figures from the Department of Education show that living near a top secondary school in this area can swell house prices by as much as £16,100.
PCSA, with grades consistently in the top few per cent in Britain over the last 7 years, and with regularly 600 applications for its 240 places, has seen parents move home to get into the school.
Now The Priory Learning Trust is leading Worle School, and predicting hugely improved outcomes at WCSA this summer, meaning that both schools in North Worle will be attractive to potential parents.
WCSA, as part of The Priory Learning Trust, will also be run with the same tried and tested methods that made PCSA so high performing and successful.
OfSTED praised WCSA in December and saw it on a fast-track to become outstanding, just like its sister school.
One estate agent, Abbie Elkins of Palmer Snell Estate Agents, said: “With Priory a lot of people say they want to be near there, so that higher demand will naturally push up the price.
“A lot of people will come in and say they want to be in the Priory catchment area – probably more than any other thing. We get a lot of families moving from out of the area and say they want to be near Priory.”
CareerPilot is a careers information website, which includes:
Or take a look at the Career Pilot App: www.careerpilotapp.org.uk