I would like to start by thanking parents/carers for observing our new parking signs that discourage parking near the school entrance. If we can reduce traffic and parked cars on Hillcrest Drive, this will support a safer environment for our students. When there are parked cars, students are tempted to walk between them and can sometimes step out without being seen by motorists.

Whilst we cover road safety in our pastoral delivery, I would ask that parents/carers also continue having those conversations with their children.  There are still students stepping out into the road without looking and we have had a number of calls from members of the public concerned about this. Students listening to music and those getting off the bus then walking straight towards the shop seem to be the most common issues.

I want to make special mention this week of our Midday Supervisors. Whilst taking on the traditional ‘dinner lady’ role, they do far more than that and support the academy in many ways.

Maxine Johnson, an established member of the team, approached me with the idea of recruiting students to support with a number of responsibilities during social times, building on the incredibly successful work experience of one of our year 10 students last year.

On Friday, I arrived at our canteen to see Leon Loughton serving students in the queue. The feedback from the midday supervisors and catering staff was that they had found his support invaluable, in addition to which Leon has learnt a variety of new skills in the different tasks he has been supporting with.

A number of students from different year groups have been involved in this initiative, and I would like to thank them and the midday supervisor team for supporting a culture where there is a strong sense of belonging, demonstrating our MDT core values perfectly and reaffirming that ‘We are Holgate!’.

As the end of term and Christmas rapidly approach, we are working hard to ensure that all students finish the term as positively as possible.  As always, we would appreciate it if parents/carers could support us in this, continuing to check their child’s positive points on Weduc, day to day books and conduct cards and encouraging improvements where needed.

We are Holgate!

Mr Pennington