Monthly Letter - January 2018
Dear Parents and Carers
This term has proved to be a very busy but hugely exciting one already. Plans for a Cadet Force at Pool Academy are flourishing. In November last year the school was given permission by the Ministry of Defence and the Department of Education to set up a MOD sponsored Army Section Detachment of the Combined Cadet Force. This will make Pool Academy CCF one of only a few Royal Logistics Corps 'badged' Cadet units. Training for adult instructors will start this month with a view to the Detachment officially opening in September 2019. The cadet force at Pool Academy will be for students aged between 12 and 18 years old and will provide challenging activities in a safe environment using the values and standards of the Armed forces.
A doctor and former Pool Academy student returned to school recently to help inspire and mentor others. Cara Swain, a trainee surgeon at Derriford Hospital in Plymouth, captivated Year 9s when she spoke to them about her journey from Pool Academy student to qualified doctor and now to training to become a surgeon. She also spoke about her time in the Navy with photographs illustrating her experiences whilst overseas. Cara welcomed questions and one student asked what was one of her most difficult operations. She told them about the time she re–implanted a man’s fingers. After her speech Cara agreed to mentor four Year 9 students to help them aspire to achieve their goals. She has asked for other ex-students to do the same and help to inspire the next generation.
We have recently received great results for some of our Year 11 students. Forty-one students have already passed their NCFE VCert Level 2 Health and Fitness examination. Students still have some coursework to complete but this sets them on a really positive path for the coming months.
We are excited to announce that we have received funding from the National Heritage Fund and the National Lottery to help support the Pool School Art Gallery. On Saturday 2nd February there will be a private view of the gallery from 2 - 4pm. Following this we are really looking forward to sharing with you news about the exciting opportunities for the whole community to experience this unique Centre of Excellence.
Our school production of High School Musical is well under way and you will have seen our recent articles on the Pool Academy website and social media focusing in on some of our fantastic young performers. The next few weeks are going to be very busy for Mr Best and our cast putting all the final preparations in place.
Mr Ford organised a really exciting event at the start of the term, inviting Olympic Athlete, Stef Collins, to work with our Year 7 students for a morning. She really put them through their paces, and it was inspiring to see the students interact with her and gain an insight into how anyone can achieve if they put their minds to it.
We are also delighted to let you know that our Year 11 Football team are now County Champions! The boys beat Callington 2-0 at Callywith College during the Cornwall County Cup Finals much to the pride of their teachers and supporters. The team secured their position in the last game of the tournament after a tight win against Helston, which had already secured the title of West Cornwall Champions, the week before with a penalty shootout score of 4-3 after a 3-3 draw at full time. The win saw the boys given a large shield which they hope to display in their ever-growing trophy cabinet. It will sit nicely next to the County Futsal trophy they won last year.
The 16th January saw our first Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) day for 2019. Year 7 had a fantastic day using their creativity to create car bonnet designs and attending workshops delivered by YZUP. Years 8 and 9 focussed on creating business ideas to support fundraising for the Cornwall Hospice South West. Year 10 were visited by Brook to deliver sex education. Year 11 were preparing for their Mock Interview Day and College applications by making sure that their CVs are ready for their exciting next steps after Pool Academy.
On Tuesday 22nd January, Pool Academy’s Head Girl was invited to the CPIR Network Panel Meeting. She spoke to members about her and the Head Boy’s loneliness project. She also revealed the results of their recent survey which highlighted that loneliness affected both the elderly and people in the younger generation too. During the meeting its members, which included County Council representatives, employers and parish councillors from the area, asked the Head Girl a number of questions about the project and her opinions on the survey. Pool Academy students were also given another slot at the meeting. They had been asked to help the CPIR Network Panel with its marketing and publicising its events on social media. A questionnaire was handed out so students could help deliver this effectively. It is hoped students will be able to address members again at the next meeting once they have collated data from the questionnaires - this will be held on 12th March from 7pm until 9pm.
A polite reminder that, as outlined last year, mobile phones are not to be used by students during the school day. This is to prevent disruption to learning. If the student has a need to contact home for any reason they should speak to their tutor, Head of Year or Student Reception and they will organise for this to happen - similarly you can always contact Main Reception if you need to contact your son/daughter. We will be reminding all students in assembly during the week commencing 4th February that if they need to have their mobile phone with them, they must be switched off and in their bags - having a mobile in blazer or trouser pocket is too tempting. This is an expectation from the moment they arrive on school site in the mornings until they leave the buildings at 2.55pm. Any student seen with a mobile phone will have it confiscated and put securely in the main office until the end of the school day and parents will be sent a text or email to indicate this has happened. Please can we ask that you support us in this by discussing at home.
Finally, a few key dates for your diaries next half term:
As always, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org). And please keep up to date with all our news on our school website: http://www.poolacademy.co.uk/latest-news-1 or on our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/poolacademy/ If you have any questions or concerns, all staff email addresses are found on the main school website. Alternatively you can ring 01209 712 220 to make an appointment.
Miss Claire Meakin