The news is full of stories that challenge our student’s resilience, understanding and sense of where they are in the world.
Our core values at Hazeley of Character, Confidence and Creativity direct us to engage with these challenges in a constructive way as we guide our students (and each other) on a journey towards playing a positive role in our community.
I wanted to use the blog to share with you some of the materials that have been presented and discussed during form time to support students with these difficult topics. Please click here to view these as a here
I hope that you take a moment to view them and possibly use them as a way of engaging further with your own children to help them make our community a more positive, cohesive and inclusive place to live.
I am also delighted to report that students have collected £268.05 in donations towards the Grenfell Tower fund. An idea put forward by one student and then acted on by a team of student volunteers.
School should be fun and exciting and one of the ways we look to achieve this at Hazeley is through providing a wide variety of enrichment activities. By running Drop Down Days we can offer such activities to the whole cohort of students. The blog this week focuses on the activities that have taken place this academic year.
Drop Down Day
At Hazeley we have experienced three Drop Down Days (DDD) this academic year, most recently on the 9th June. A Drop Down Day is when the usual timetabled lessons are suspended to allow students and staff to work on a wide variety of different projects to develop Character, Confidence and Creativity even further.
What happens on a Drop Down Day?
Inviting people into school from local companies is key to making the day’s exciting and different to a normal day at school. This year we had a wide range of external support from indoor golf, Bollywood dancers, musicians, artists, mathematicians, Young Enterprise, first aid and Yoga, to name but a few. In June Year 9 participated in ‘Learn to Earn’ empowering students to take ownership of their life choices, think about their career options and the qualifications they need to pursue them. Students explored personal skills and talents, recruitment and job interviews, career choices, salaries, earnings, tax, the cost of living, financial planning and budgeting.
Some subjects use the time to focus on a particular aspect of a subject, for example completing Controlled Assessment work that contributes to a final GCSE grade. In October, Year 11 students worked on a piece of Science controlled assessment and in January, Year 10 did the same in History and Geography. The length of time that a whole day focussed on one topic allows students to become fully immersed in their work.
Drop Down Days are also used to support revision and exam preparation. In January Year 11 spent the day in English getting to grips with exam technique in the new 9-1 GCSE. Year 10 had half a day with English and half a day with Maths in the most recent day, to help prepare them for the upcoming Year 10 Pre Public Exams (PPEs).
Year 12 and 13 participated in the October and January day, giving the June one over to PPEs and summer exams. With the theme of ‘preparing for life beyond school’, students learnt how to cook some classic student dishes, manage their own finances, improve their personal statements for UCAS as well as work in teams to plan and deliver a fundraising event for local and national charities supported by an external mentor.
An advantage of Drop Down Days is the way they allow us to use staffing creatively too. The excellent Pathway Preferences Taster Day for Year 8 in January had 22 different members of staff from across all faculties delivering KS4 taster lessons on a rotation across eight shorter lessons to allow the students to try out different subjects prior to making their preference choices.
There have been a number of trips on offer during the year, with Year 7 visiting two different castles and the Natural History Museum and Year 9 visiting several locations as part of an Art and Nature themed day in the Autumn, as well as very successful Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Expedition in June.
Thank you to our students, who had to push their boundaries, develop new skills, improve old ones and experience something different. Plans are already in place to make the Drop Down Days for 2017-2018 even better!
Quick Look at the Term Ahead
Firstly I hope you will share my admiration for Sarah Ikumu and her amazing performances on Britain’s Got Talent. Sarah reflected so many of our Hazeley values; her modesty when receiving the golden buzzer, her powerful comeback when narrowly missing the vote to reach the final and her confidence when performing in the final show. I am certain this will just be one step on the road to a hugely successful career.
On the subject of success exam season has got off to a good start at Hazeley and our fingers are firmly crossed that the hard work of the students, parents, carers and staff will be rewarded with results that reflect their commitment.
The term ahead promises to be a busy one full of various events including trips, academy productions and proms. Some key dates include:
Monday 12th June
|Hazeley will be hosting a Teach Meet more details of what promises to be an inspiring event can be found HERE|
Tuesday 20th June
7.00am – 9.00am
|Representatives from local business will share their experiences with each other and our students with a focus on Finance, Entrepreneurship and Management.
For further information please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
|Y8 Bushcraft Trip
Week Commencing 26th June
|Students will be travelling to Oxfordshire for their Bushcraft Adventure. No doubt they will return older, wiser and considerably muddier.|
Friday 30th June – eve
|Y11 students celebrate the end of the exam season and their KS4 studies at their Prom.|
|Y6 into Y7 Transition Day
Monday 3rd July
|Hazeley welcomes our new intake of students for an action packed, super-friendly transition day.|
|Sixth Form Induction
Tuesday 4th and Wednesday 5th July
|Students from across the city will join Hazeley over 2 days to prepare for their Sixth Form studies.|
Friday 7th July
|We will say farewell and good luck to our truly fabulous Y13 students at their Prom.|
Wizard of Oz
Week Commencing 10th July
|Look out for details of performance dates, times and ticket sales for Hazeley’s production of Wizard of Oz.|
Thursday 13th July
|Students from all year groups will compete for their House.
|Sports Presentation Afternoon
Friday 14th July
|Students and staff will come together to reflect on the years sporting successes and highlights.
Mr T Nelson
The build-up has been a long one; however exams are now in full swing with both Year 11 and Year 13’s working very hard. Hazeley staff are immensely proud of these students and the young adults they have become.
We have an exciting end of term ahead of us including activities such as Sports Day (Thursday 13th July), Academy production of ‘The Wizard of Oz’ (week commencing 10th July), Transition activities for the new intake both Year 7 and Sixth Form, Creativity Showcase (20th June) and our final Drop Down Day of the academic Year on Thursday 9th June.
We wish all students a well-deserved break over half-term and look forward to welcoming them all back on Tuesday 6th June.
Mr T Nelson
The blog this week is written by Mr Healy, Deputy Principal with key responsibility for behaviour.
The Hazeley Way
We are currently sailing a sea of change in terms of our education landscape and whilst the horizon looks far from clear (new assessments and GCSE grading’s, new specifications, less funding, teacher recruitment concerns) what remains stable and consistent is the 1400 plus students who arrive each and every day at Hazeley.
There is also nothing more rewarding than meeting with ex-Hazeley students and hearing how well they have progressed. Almost every conversation contains one of 2 things:
- The highly positive relationships with staff with anecdotes such as “do you remember when” .
- How being organised and self-sufficient at school has helped prepare them for life beyond the gates.
At Hazeley we do expect our students to be organised. We recognise that some students may require additional support with personal organisation and this is offered through Form Tutors, Teaching Assistants and Year Group Learning Mentors (R2L). As a parent myself it can be a fine line between doing it all for your child and they become over reliant and letting them get on with it which can seem like setting them up to fail. What we do know is that students need to come to school prepared, on time and have eaten a breakfast that will provide long lasting energy.
Some areas for students to consider:
- What lessons they have each day?
- What equipment do they need?
- What is coming up this week i.e. catering ingredients, PE kit, or a pending trip that requires payment?
At Hazeley we reward and recognise through the use of stamps where students consistently meet expectations. We are also looking at revamping our rewards system for 2017-2018 to recognise the achievements and efforts of our hardworking students.
Our expectations are set out in the Behaviour and Discipline policy which can be found on our website LINK.
- Communicate effectively
- On time, on task
- Do as you have been asked the first time of asking
- Equipment for learning
- Succeed and progress.
At Hazeley we find the CODES system simple yet effective (full details can also be found in the above policy).
Occasionally students can make the wrong decision and will be issued with a Code from C1 to C5. If a detention has been issued staff will endeavour to advise parents and carers by phone or email and a detention sticker will be put in the students planner to notify the time, date, location and duration of the detention.
Failure to attend a detention will result in a 1 hour Senior Leadership Detention. Failure to attend this escalated sanction will results in an internal isolation.
Support at home can include:
- Checking student planners regularly to praise the collection of stamps or query blank spaces, consequences, notes from teachers or detention stickers?
- Using the planner or email to communicate with a member of staff (including dentist/doctor’s appointments).
- Use of Go4Schools to review latest progress review reports/attendance/ punctuality.
If you are not already using Go4Schools then please take a look at the help sheet on our website LINK.
If you have any questions please contact your child’s Form Tutor in the first instance.
Mr S Healy
Across the UK, schools are facing a rise in pupils suffering from mental health problems. According to the charity Young Minds around 3 children in every class suffer from a diagnosable mental health disorder. With so many pressures on children and young people it is vital that we support them by promoting mental health awareness within school and at home.
A few weeks ago my lead lessons (assemblies) focussed on mental health and more specifically the advice from the NHS in relation to what we can all do to help our own mental wellbeing.
Thanks to the good work of our recently promoted SENCO, Mrs Hearty, during the National Mental Health Awareness Week (8th May – 12th May) The Hazeley Academy and Shenley Brook End school will be working together to further raise awareness of emotional wellbeing and mental health.
In form time students will be able to access and reflect on information about how to recognise signs of stress, depression and other mental health issues that they may be experiencing, how to self-manage and where to go to for more support including a range of useful websites:
If you are interested in mental health and want to hear some inspirational stories you may want to look up mind over marathon on the BBC website http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p04yy0r8
Nǐ hǎo (Hello) Huānyíng lái dào Hazeley (Welcome to Hazeley)
This week ten 14-16 year old pupils from China have arrived to spend 9 weeks studying at The Hazeley Academy whilst living with families in the local area. This is the longest period of time that we have hosted an international exchange and the experience is already proving to be beneficial for our students as well as our guests. The purpose of the trip is for our visitors to improve their English language skills and to immerse themselves in British culture. This will be helped by a week -long trip to London, as well as Edinburgh later on in their stay where they get to put down their pens and paper and pick up a camera for some sight-seeing. Intellectual exploits are high on the agenda though with the students already having sat an iGCSE in Mathematics in their first week here!
The International students attend lessons alongside Year 9 “buddies” from Hazeley who have each paired up with one of the visitors to help them experience life as a Hazeley student. Our Chinese visitors attend all lessons (apart from Modern Languages) with their buddies and also get to join them for lunch and break-time, experiencing all aspects of life in a British school. Coming from a school in the heart of the city of Beijing, the Hazeley grounds and sports facilities have made a huge impression, as have our Year 9 buddies who have been doing an amazing job making the students feel welcomed and comfortable in their temporary school.
Progress Leader – Year 9
Over the past two years Hazeley has been working increasingly closely with Shenley Brook End School and the primary schools across the west of Milton Keynes. Initially the work was relatively ad-hoc, however this year it has developed into a more structured partnership.
There are 5 clear aims to our joint working which guide everything we do:
- The provision of a holistic education
- The rigour of academic challenge
- The creation of a positive and high performing environment for staff
- A supportive partnership with parents, carers and families
- A meaningful relationship with the wider community
The work has led to many benefits for young people in our schools including:
- Improved transition from primary to secondary school
- Sharing best practice between teaching staff (for example how to teach an assess new curriculums)
- Sharing best practice between school leaders
- Supporting with the appointment and training of staff
- Running joint events that link with the community such as Career Days and Business Breakfast.
The governing bodies at Hazeley and Shenley are now working with primary school colleagues to explore what the future might look like. Their aim is very clear; to develop a vision, structure and systems that benefit all of the young people across the western side of Milton Keynes.
What is already evident is that the individual ethos and characters of separate schools will be firmly preserved. As Principal I am very much behind partnership working as this this creates an exciting yet secure future for the staff, students and partners of The Hazeley Academy.
That Golden Buzzer Moment
I am sure that many, if not all, of you will have watched Hazeley student Sarah Ikumu’s amazing performance on the opening episode of Britain’s Got Talent.
A performance that culminated in the Golden Buzzer being pressed by head judge Simon Cowell.
Sarah has secured an automatic place in the live semi-finals taking place in May; not just a wow moment, also an amazing achievement.
What leads to this Golden Buzzer moment? Those who know Sarah are aware of the hours of practice she has invested into her singing and the depth of support she has enjoyed from her friends, her church, the academy and most importantly her family. We have seen this quiet, reserved girl step out of her comfort zone to compete in, and win, Hazeley’s own talent show, the H FACTOR and then only last year won the Milton Keynes Young Musician of the Year.
Your own Golden Buzzer moments may not involve being live on National TV on a Saturday evening, but the formula is relatively simple; talent + effort + support + seizing opportunities lead to amazing things.
The formula hides the level of challenge and achievement, personal sacrifice, wrestling self-doubt, overcoming failure, taking calculated risks, staying true to your values which all takes something special, something that Hazeley works hard to find in every student.
I am certain that Sarah can count on the support of the Hazeley community in the months and years ahead as her career blossoms and she continues to develop and share her beautiful gift.
Performance Link: LINK
End of Term Round-up and Reminders
Spring has certainly sprung and we are set for a lovely Easter break along with a very enjoyable and successful summer term.
The partnership between home and academy is a key factor in student’s progress and happiness. Parents who work closely with the academy almost guarantee greater success for their child.
The key questions below are designed to offer reflection on how we might be able to work in even closer partnership.
Working Together – Some Key Questions
Do you check your child’s planner on a weekly or daily basis?
The quickest way of finding out how your child is doing at school is by looking at their planner and we suggest this becomes part of a daily/weekly routine. A full set of stamps is a great sign. A missing stamp will normally be supported with a symbol such as a H (missing homework), L (Late to lesson) and a C1, C2, C3 or C4 (poor behaviour).
If you have any questions about your child’s planner and stamps the best person to contact is their form tutor.
Have you logged onto Go4Schools in the last month?
Our online reporting and communication system is Go4Schools. In it you will find a wealth of information about your child’s progress and homework. To find out more click HERE.
Are you confident that your child’s uniform will meet expectations at the start of the new term?
We are very grateful to our supportive parents/carers and continue to be very proud of our high expectations in relation to uniform. When we return there will be a particular focus on ensuring student skirts are an appropriate length and that trousers are not of the “skinny” variety. More information regarding uniform expectations can be accessed HERE.
Do you support your child being on time each day?
We will be having a further push on punctuality and your support is absolutely critical. Students who arrive late for school are placed at a real disadvantage, often missing out on key messages and preparation time.
Does your child always arrive at school with the correct equipment?
Where parents/carers encourage their children to have a rigid routine each evening which involves packing their school bag for the next day, support their child by removing barriers to learning. Please note delivery of non-urgent items such as PE Kits, catering ingredients etc. will not be accepted by the reception team.
If you have answered yes to all of the above with confidence than you should feel reassured that you are helping set your child up for a successful summer term.
Thank you for your support, it is deeply appreciated.
All students return to the academy on Tuesday 18th April 2017. Term and Key dates can be accessed on our website HERE.
Science week at The Hazeley Academy (13th– 17th March)
Students in Year 7 have been experiencing a range of cross-curricular activities during Science week. The theme this year is “Change” and has been interpreted in many ways at Hazeley with some faculties looking at global warming, deforestation or the changes in warfare over time. Other year groups have been involved in quizzing activities during registration time and earned house points for their excellent efforts.
Interviewing some of the students, Dan and Rishi explained that science week was “fun and different as we are doing lots of new practical work”. A group of Year 7 girls were animated in their explanation of what “change” meant in forensic science and why it is so important to be able to use modern technology to identify evidence at a crime scene.
Communicating with the Academy
Effective communication is the basis of strong relationships. Success for the young people at Hazeley relies heavily on the creation of positive relationships between all stakeholders and academy staff.
The blog this week draws your attention to the on-line information portal (Go4Schools) and the Academy Communication Policy which can be accessed on our website HERE.
Some key points for effective communication with the academy include:
- Use of the online information portal, Go4Schools, is a crucial first step in communicating with the academy. The majority of parents/carers are now engaging on a weekly basis with the academy portal. Being able to support your child by knowing how they are getting on at the academy, both academically and behaviourally, places them at a massive advantage.If you are not already using Go4Schools then please take a look at the help sheet on our website Should you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact our data team at: email@example.com.
- Contacting the right people. Form tutors and subject teachers work closely with your child and for the majority of enquires can be the most effective first point of contact. The reception team can also guide you to the right person.
- Email is usually the best method for initial contact. Details on how to contact staff can be found HERE.
- Staff will aim to respond to contact within 2 school days, for non urgent requests.
- Staff are not available to meet with parents/carers without a pre-booked meeting.
- If your enquiry is urgent the reception team will support in the escalating of any concern.
These guidelines are in place to help ease the communication process for stakeholders by encouraging informal engagement with the academy with the aim to reach the right outcome for students.
Thank you for your ongoing support.
The blog this week is brought to you by Director of Creativity, Mrs Jobling. She reflects upon the importance and meaning of Creativity at Hazeley.
Creativity is often banded around in many organisations as the current ‘buzz’ word. Many schools are desperately looking for the mythical beast and trying to bottle and inject this into children’s lives. But why is it important? And how does it impact long term on a child’s life and enhance their prospects? Lee Watanabe-Crockett talks about skills that are a necessity for learners to be competitive within the 21st century in which problem solving, analytical thinking and Creativity are at the top of the list. He talks about children needing a totally new set of skills to adapt to this ever changing landscape and braves a new concept called solution fluency which is quite simply the outcome of all of these skills combined.
The millennial child can deal with a vast amount of information and stimuli which is always at the end of a finger sweep, however do parents and teachers alike truly give children credit for their ability to work creatively in both digital and non-digital environments? Creativity in its purest form aims to provide children with the skillset necessary to develop unique and useful solutions to the challenges that they face within school and as part of the work place. As a result teachers are always in hot pursuit of this thing called Creativity.
In times gone by, the word creative has been associated with someone’s ability within specific subjects. For example if a learner had ability within Art or could draw particularly well this was an evident sign that ‘yes’ they are truly creative, however when we discuss Creativity within Hazeley we are considering it within that pure form ensuring that children have the opportunity to demonstrate these secret talents that we know make them truly wonderful individuals.
Mrs L Jobling
Director or Creativity
The blog this week is written by Mrs Lloyd-Jones and offers an insight into how we develop CONFIDENCE at Hazeley. It looks in particular at the work of our Confidence faculty which is made up of PE, Psychology, Law, Sociology, Health and Social Care and Personal, Social and Health Education.
CONFIDENCE IS RIDING HIGH:
Our core purpose at The Hazeley Academy is to develop Character, Confidence and Creativity in our young people and each other so that together we can gain fulfilment by playing a positive role in our community.
In the Confidence faculty staff work with students and each other to increase knowledge, understanding, skills and attitudes regarding many aspects of education and life. We work to build trust amongst our community, we encourage each other to take calculated risks where appropriate because we understand that honest mistakes can occur and yet it is important that we learn from them together.
Establishing routines and setting high expectations have a key role to play in the development of confidence. Supporting individuals to be successful and reach the heights they never thought possible and celebrating their achievements can help them feel and be more confident.
It is not about always getting it right and more often than not we have conversations with people about it being ok to make mistakes; but the fear of getting something wrong can be the driving force that stops people today even trying in the first place.
Most people, if honest, would say they are afraid of failing, at least some of the time. However having a fear of failure is when we allow that fear to stop us doing the things that can move us forward to achieve our goals. Part of our work as members of staff within the Confidence faculty is to encourage small steps towards greater achievement by questioning decisions, challenging actions and supporting effort. If tasks can be broken down they can seem more manageable for everyone, yet what happens behind the scenes is often key to future accomplishments.
The outcome may be success but the process to get there often requires hard work, sacrifices, disappointments and dedication. It is how we help students to understand this that will assist them in their future.
From work in form time regarding metacognition and understanding the Growth and Fixed mindsets for Year 7 students to Year 11, 12 and 13 being supported through structured revision techniques.
In Health and Social Care and psychology understanding how mental health can impact on daily life and yet how exercise in PE can be part of a programme to strengthen someone’s mental health.
Our January Year 9 Drop Down Day focused on health and well-being with students and staff rotated around various activities from first aid and supporting life by knowing the recovery position to playing indoor golf or trying the martial art of Aikido. Discussing mindfulness and the notion of living in the here and now – we cannot change yesterday or predict tomorrow but we can affect the now.
We have football teams who entered the County Cup this year and had more teams reach the quarter finals than in any previous year – a success to build on and strive to improve next year. We have achieved improvement through students committing to training and fixtures and putting in the effort to reap the reward. This creates the feeling of accomplishment – the buzz of doing well.
As with anything confidence will grow with a willingness to try and to fall down but get back up; to seek and accept feedback and challenges, because without these we will only stand still.
Austin’s Butterfly is a great example of how being persistent, determined and willing to listen to feedback, the ability to demonstrate improvement through effort, this can be achieved. .
Director of Confidence
End of Term Round-up and Reminders
It has certainly been another action packed start to the term. Please find below a few key reminders and some reflections on the activities that have taken place at the start of 2017.
We are very grateful to our supportive parents/carers and continue to be very proud of our high expectations in relation to uniform. When we return there will be a particular focus on ensuring students’ skirts are an appropriate length and that trousers are not of the “skinny” variety. More information regarding uniform expectations can be accessed here.
Please encourage your child to walk/cycle to school if at all possible. If you do need to drive students to school we strongly suggest that you drop them off at a safe place, a distance from the academy and avoid the local round-a-bout as this causes congestion.
If you drop your child in the academy car park please let them exit your car near the main entrance; this prevents students from needing to cross the busy road and helps the traffic flow. The car park is much quieter 15mins before the opening of the academy and 15minutes after the final bell.
We will be having a further push on punctuality and your support is absolutely critical. Students who arrive late for school are placed at a real disadvantage, often missing out on key messages and preparation time.
After School Clubs
Students are encouraged to take the opportunity to attend as many after school clubs as they can. Students should not be on the academy grounds outside of the school day unless they are registered at an organised club.
The academy term dates can be accessed here.
A great start to the New Year
2017 began with last year’s record breaking sixth form students returning to join us for an awards evening.
Helping students make the right choices has been a theme for the start of this term. Year 8 have been supported through the start of their preferences process, we have received over 300 applications to our 6th Form and there has been a great buzz amongst the Year 13 students as the offers to Cambridge, Loughborough, Bath and other top Universities come rolling in.
Our young enterprise team have been at work, wheeling and dealing. Please look out for details of up and coming events where you can support them. The links with local industry have been cemented further with a range of individual careers talks from Worktree.
The maths team have filled the term with challenge days and gifted and talented events, helping explain how and why they help students gain the very best results in the city. As always other subjects are keen to emulate this success and have offered a vast array of trips and events to support the already excellent classroom provision.
Our focus on the more able students has gathered momentum; high flying Y7 students have been studying A level texts with the support of Miss Batson, whilst our newly formed TOP 50 group have grasped the additional challenges and opportunities given to them.
Working closely with Shenley Brook End School has helped create more opportunities for the students and staff at both schools. Joint business breakfasts, careers fairs, staff training, gifted and talented sessions. This is just the start of things to come from this mutually beneficial partnership.
Parents continue to play a big role in the term. Attendance at parent evenings has been around 80% and the Parent Voice group have helped sharpen and improve our new online reporting system.
Thank you to all the parents and carers who took part in the recent Parent Governor elections both as candidates and voters. We are pleased to announce that the successful candidates were:
- Mark Allen
- Jane Osayimwen
- Ben Phillips
I wish you all a lovely half term break and look forward to seeing all year groups returning on Monday 20th February.