Headteacher Update 2nd July 2021

02/07/21

Dear Parent,

You may want to sit down before you read this as it covers quite a lot of ground; you might even want to get a cup of tea and a biscuit! As a Historian you might expect my favourite biscuit to be a Bourbon or Garibaldi but currently I have a penchant for Jaffa Cakes (other biscuits/cakes are available). More importantly…

COVID-19

The cases in CW&C and across the country continue to be a concern but I am very pleased to say that at the time of writing we have had no new cases amongst students reported to us for almost two weeks now. The government is taking the dual approach of suggesting that bubbles and other restrictions could be lifted on July 19th; whilst also asking schools to get ready for carrying out twice weekly testing of students and staff on the premises from September. At this stage the timeline for our return to school in September (see later in the email) is accurate but we may need to stagger the return if we are required to test each student twice before they return. I will update you as and when necessary in the next couple of weeks and over the summer break.

FORMAL OPENING OF VERITAS BY THE BISHOP OF CHESTER

On Tuesday of this week we were finally able to formally open our new building: Veritas. This was a very small scale, socially distanced outdoor event but no less important to us for that. Bishop Mark Tanner spent a couple of hours in school being quizzed by 4 of our Year 9 Ambassadors (report for the website to follow) as well as speaking to the small gathering under the canopy outside of Veritas.

I thought it would be appropriate that the House ribbons should be cut by Mrs Harries (our longest serving member of staff) and Leah Moss (our youngest Year 7 student). We are really looking forward to the day when we can invite parents back into school so that you can see the fantastic facilities your children are able to benefit from.

In September 2012 the school became Hartford Church of England High School; in March 2020 Veritas was opened and the other main building took the name Caritas. The names of the buildings come from our school motto: Caritas et Veritas; named for the Love and Truth of Jesus Christ. We refer to them in this way and not as buildings because we want the bricks and mortar to be part of our living and breathing vision.

We want our students to know caritas: empathy, kindness and serving others, “…abounding in love and faithfulness.” (Exodus 34:6); and for them to grow in veritas: humility, knowledge and faithfulness, “…full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)

THE HARRIES’ SPORTS HALL

Part of the event on Tuesday was the naming of our Sports Hall. This is named for Graham and Julia Harries who cut the House ribbons to declare the Sports Hall formally open; Mrs Harries retires this summer after 43 years at the school. Between them they have given over 80 years of service to the young people who have attended our school. It is right that we honour them in this way to mark their incredible dedication and contribution to the school and local community. It is also an excellent opportunity to educate our children and the wider community on the correct use of the possessive apostrophe!

GCSE RESULTS DAY: THURSDAY 12TH AUGUST

Results will be emailed to students at 8.30am and Year 11 students will be invited into school at staggered times to collect them in person if they wish to do so. There is no need for Year 10 students who have taken RS GCSE this year to collect their result in school on the day – they will also receive an email at 8.30am. Next week, Year 11 students and families will receive an email regarding timings, support on results day and the appeals process.

YEAR GROUP SYSTEM AND HOUSE SYSTEM

We have taken the decision to move to a year group system from this September. Students will also remain in Houses and we will ensure that the many great things we do through the House system are retained. We have made the change for a number of reasons; the reality is that during the last 16 months the vast majority of our approach has been directed through year groups; additionally, we also feel that a year group system is more suited to our predominantly single site school whereas the House system suited the old split site.

The Heads of Year from September will be:

  • YEAR 7             MRS DANIELS
  • YEAR 8             MR MARKLOVE
  • YEAR 9             MISS GITTINS
  • YEAR 10           MR ARMSTRONG
  • YEAR 11           MR MASON

We have also revamped our student support processes and we have appointed a School Counsellor to join the staff from September.

REMINDER: END OF TERM/RETURNING TO SCHOOL IN SEPTEMBER

  • FRIDAY 16TH JULY:                                END OF TERM, STUDENTS LEAVE AT 1PM

 

  • TUESDAY 31ST AUGUST:                        YEAR 7 INDUCTION DAY
  • WEDNESDAY 1ST SEPTEMBER:               INSET DAY
  • THURSDAY 2ND SEPTEMBER:                 INSET DAY
  • FRIDAY 3RD SEPTEMBER:                      INSET DAY
  • MONDAY 6TH SEPTEMBER:                    YEAR 7 INDUCTION; YEARS 8 – 11 PROGRESS DAY
  • TUESDAY 7TH SEPTEMBER:                    YEARS 7 – 11 IN SCHOOL

 

MY WALL CHART

My Euro 2020 Wall Chart is currently taking pride of place at home. As the supporter of a very mediocre League 2 football team (for a time last season there was a distinct possibility that we wouldn’t even be a league team next season) my only real chance of true football glory resides with the England national team. To be fair we’ve seen a lot of mediocrity there too over most of my lifetime. One major trophy in our history: I know that was then, but it could be again…

In Caritas et Veritas,

Mike Holland