It’s reached that point in the year where we say goodbye to our students in Year 11 and 13 until results days and welcome new students next half term to the induction days for our new Year 12 and 7.
It’s a period of high emotions and celebration! There are some photographs from today’s celebrations and our onsite “Plymfest” below, that we ran today to reward Year 11 and 13 for their hard work this term, they’ve been amazing. A full write up after the holiday on these emotional celebrations.
I also want to thank our whole community for their support of our wonderful young people throughout this period. The Teacher Assessed Grades or TAGs as they are now referred to, is a completely new process and one all have supported, parents, carers and staff. It’s been a real team effort and one everyone should be very proud of.
Students of the Week:
This week, as far as we are concerned, all our Year 11 and 13 students are students of the week. They have all worked exceptionally hard over their two years of GCSE and A Levels demonstrating strength of character, determination and a desire to succeed. They are all absolutely awesome! Being the best they can be.
Finally, without doubt it’s the end of a busy, challenging but successful half term for all our students. The focus since we returned after the Easter holidays was to support all students to re-establish themselves back into the structures, routines and rules of Plymstock School. We have seen the overwhelming majority of our students consistently adhere to our standards and expectations and I would like to thank you for your support in helping achieve this. It is clear that the pandemic has affected us all in different ways and we will continue to have a focus in the last half term on:
Standards and Expectations – Restless Excellence
Mr Yendell, explores what this means to us as a school at the end of this blog and why it’s so important to us at school.
Our priorities for our students will continue to be:
- to have the very best educational experience possible, in an environment that will be as familiar as possible and safe.
- their physical and emotional well-being.
- that they continue to have the highest aspirations and expectations of themselves.
We will continue to work with all our school community and provide opportunities for additional support wherever this is needed, both educationally and emotionally.
#claassof2021 #awesome #community #resilience #MentalHealthMatters
Brave the Shave
Bronwyn who is raising money for a charity very close to her heart. She had her hair shaved off, to raise money for Macmillan.
Bronwyn explains: “My auntie said she would do it for me as long as I raised money for charity. I would appreciate it if you could sponsor me to help me raise my target for this great charity that helped treat my great grandmother when she was very ill.”
We’re incredibly proud of Bronwyn, she really does inspire us with her empathy for others.
Plymouth Rotary to gift to key workers
Poppy, Amy and Lizzie have been very busy this term, designing, planning and making a variety of objects including papier mache tribal masks, a clock and a special project with clay donated by Plymouth Rotary to gift to key workers. The students each made a colourful clay bowl and will be giving it to their nominated key worker soon.
A special mention to Poppy who is leaving us tomorrow after being at Plymstock for 5 years. This wonderful young lady embodies all that it means to be a Plymstock student; Resiliance, Endevour and Empathy.
Good luck from us all Poppy, we are going to miss your smiley face.
Mrs Summers, Mrs Fenwick, Mrs Childs and Mrs Pearsall
To our wonderful Year 13’s,
What a weird and crazy 2 years of A Levels for you all.
It has been a privilege to see you grow and mature into young adults.
Here’s the link to the page we have made to celebrate your time with us: https://plymstockschool.org.uk/year-13-leavers-2021/
We are so proud of what you have accomplished, the strength of character you have demonstrated in face of all the changes and challenges to our lives over the last 16(ish) months. You should all be proud of yourselves, who you have become and what you have achieved.
Good luck with all your future adventures, work hard, dream big and reach for the stars – you will achieve anything you set your minds to.
We will miss you Class of 2021 – take care and enjoy your Summer break.
Beckie and Ms Monelle
As part of the sixth form tradition the Head Of sixth always has some sort of prank played on them. This 555 balloons filled with Ms Monelle’s property have been blown up and put in her classroom
Headteacher Personal Achievement Awards
Two students this week, demonstrating our Plymstock School values of endeavour, resilience and empathy, in trying to be the best they can be.
A member of the public has contacted the school to commend Blake C. The lady was with her granddaughter in Deans Cross Park and Blake moved a group of children on so that her granddaughter could play on the equipment. Blake showed awareness of others and empathy, leading by example and being a fantastic citizen within our local community.
Mr Chivers would like to nominate Mohammed A who has been awarded the Trinity College London Arts Award Discover. To achieve this award students collect evidence in an individual arts log of their experiences of: participating in arts activities; researching artists and their work and sharing their arts discoveries.
Mohammad, has shown endeavour and resilience in his commitment, we are incredibly proud of his achievement.
Class Shout Outs
Mrs Worley would like to commend her students on their cooking skills:
“Lots of students have been busy cooking this week, and I’ve been very impressed with the level of presentation some of the students are displaying. I have attached some of the pictures that I have been sent. Well done to the following students:
In Year 7, Camden-Beau M, Oscar W, Alice D, Owen B, Sienna M-B, Ava G, Joseph R, Josh T and Imogen P Tobi B, Chloe M and Imogen P have all made soup, Ruby W made frittatas.
In Year 8, Nat D, Poppy G, Charlotte C, Tilly J, Abigail E, Kiana MP, Charlie P and Erin H Leah B, Finlay E Issy E-D and Ruby W have all made burgers.
In Year 9, Robyn K, Brooklyn C, Jordan A, Jacob B, Louise C, Ava Rose E, Gracie F have all made macaroni cheese.
In Year 10, Michael A has been busy making lots of different things including Katsu curry, chicken Musakhan and prawn Arrabiata Farfalle (I am also loving the fact he also sends me the recipe he has used so I am able to make some of the delicious looking dishes too!)
Keep on cooking everyone and remember to send me your photos!”
Year 11 Geography class
Miss Easton would like to nominate her Year 11 Geography class. She says “They are all so wonderful! They have worked above and beyond over the last 2 years and it has been a pleasure to teach them! I am really going to miss them.”
Merits and Rewards
A huge congratulations to those students who were awarded their bronze merit award this half term. Since September these students have achieved 150 merits for their brilliant work, attitude to school life and encompassing what it means to be part of Plymstock School. I would like to individually mention every student who was presented with a badge and certificate but with 74 names it would take a long time!
Wear your badges with pride – we are proud of you!
Next half term lets push to get as many merits and golden tickets as we can and get those badges on show – be the best you can be and do your best everyday – we can’t ask any more of you!
We want to recognise as many of you as we can for doing the right thing everyday. There may even be some prizes as well…..
Duke of Edinburgh Award – spotlight on Year 9
This week’s spotlight is on year 9 Bronze DofE students Sam R and Ollie E….
Sam has been busy with his three DofE sections. For his ‘skills’ section he commented ‘I am doing calligraphy. Before I could start, I had to learning how to sit properly and hold the pen and then learn all the terminology they use, it was like a whole new language. Then I practised some basic strokes, and I am now learning a basic brush alphabet.
For his ‘volunteering’ Sam commented ‘I am helping to look after the equipment at Cattewater Gig Rowing club down at Mountbatten, this is mostly going to be cleaning the boats so that the salt water is removed from them, and they stay in good condition. For the physical section I am doing the Couch to 5K (C25K). I am using the C25K app to record when I have completed a session but also ‘run keeper’ to provide evidence of where and when I have run’.
As you can see from the pictures below, he has made a great start!
Ollie has been learning some beach conservation for his ‘volunteering’ section. His goal is to clean the beaches in the local area, therefore reducing the impact of plastic waste and enabling the animals to live in a safer environment. He is also cycling for his ‘physical’ section and cooking for his ‘skills’ section, preparing family meals and taking the stress off his parents.
Other students have been hard at work on their physical section. Activities include walking, running, karate, sailing, racketball, cycling, dancing, football, netball, Tae Kwon Do, paddle boarding, swimming, boxing, yoga, and roller skating to name a few.
Keep up the good work year 9 and remember to upload your evidence to the eDofE site.
Mrs de Mora
Duke of Edinburgh Awards
Congratulations to Daisy and William who have completed their Bronze award during lockdown.
This is a fantastic achievement. Well done to both students
Students of the week
All our nominees have demonstrated Endeavour, Resilience and Empathy; Plymstock School students striving to “Be the best you can be”.
This week’s winners
In Year 7:
- Mrs Pearsall has nominated Sarah-Jane R “Sarah-Jane is a role model for the class. She has inspired others with her positive contributions in our forensic reading lessons, supports others when they need help, and has a can-do attitude to learning. Keep working hard!”
In Year 8:
- Miss Pring has nominated Theo B for “amazing work on his project despite having missed several lessons in the unit”
In Year 9:
- Ms Birchnall has nominated two students – Jess G and Lucy E, both students dropped only one mark in their Science exams. Amazing achievement!
In Year 10:
- Miss Davis has nominated Kianna Y, for showing amazing resilience, always smiling and wanting others to be happy.
In Year 11:
Mrs Whitehead would like to nominate her Year 11 students:
- Olivia G — for trying so hard in all her tests and making the Year 11 team very proud of what she has achieved.
- Elisha T — for completing her Drama performance
- Millie W — for the way that she has completed all her tests with a smile and making the Year 11 Team very proud of what she has achieved.
- Kyle E — for being positive during his tests and being helpful over the past weeks.
- Louis W — for his attitude to want to do his best.
In Year 12:
- Jacob J -For working really hard on his history coursework
Student of the Week Nominations
Well done to all who were nominated this week:
- Charles B-R has been nominated by Miss Pring for “an amazing end of unit test score!! He has worked hard in every single lesson and clearly put in substantial time for revision. He is a genuine person and it is my privilege to be able to teach him and have him in my lessons.”
- Archie S has been nominated by Mrs Pearsall: “Archie has worked very hard on his maths this half-term, and as a result, he is making excellent progress. Keep up the great work Archie!”
- Jessica G has been nominated by Miss Pring, for outstanding design work and modelling for a ‘live brief’ that we have been working on. Her design ability, approach and attitude to learning is exemplary. Photography below
- Millie C – for her continued excellent effort in sociology,
- Oliver K – for his continued excellent effort in sociology
- Abi C – for outstanding history revision work
- Tyler H – Computer Science: for completing his NEA in record time due to his commitment to learning and exceptional organisational skills
- All Year 12 Criminologists for working extra hard for the last two weeks on their controlled assessments and determination and a strong commitment to succeed.
The Student Column’s TEACHERS OF THE WEEK
- Mr Bellamy – a decent teacher who is great at explaining, very encouraging and highly knowledgeable – Oliver B, Oliver F-smith and Joel C
- Mr P Broadwater – for his incredible help in English. A quote from Ruby “I’m really good at English now because of him” – Ruby W
- Miss Merrit – for making science lessons interesting and for making me laugh – Lilia O
Year 11 section:
- They would love to all nominate Elaine Whitehead
- Mr Leal – absolutely fantastic teacher and legend
- Mr Wallace – relaxed and helpful teacher supported people to get their best grade
- Mrs Slade – just being amazing
- Mrs Burt – helping student all the time
- Miss Cohen – helping massively to support students to get the best grade they deserve
- Mr Dale from Alfie B, Liam S and Isaac P for always making lessons fun! And he is great at clash of clans
- Mr Riden from Katie P for always being really good and making lessons fun always
- Miss D from Archie B because she has been setting fun work and I like working in groups
- Broadwater for being a very nice man
- Mr Nicholls for being very funny and enthusiastic
- Mr Swabey for being funny and kind
- Mrs White for being very patient
Plymstock School are supporting the Everyone’s Invited campaign by reminding all our students that any young person who reports that they have been affected by this issue will be supported in line with our existing safeguarding protocols. Students can contact their Head of Year, Assistant Head of Year or any of our Designated Safeguarding Leads to discuss any concerns that they may have about sexual harassment, assault or abuse.
These will be managed in line with the school’s Safeguarding Policy. Alongside this we already have a dedicated link to the NSPCC on our website and a range of other links to pages to support families and children. The NSPCC have also launched a dedicated helpline for children and young people who have experienced sexual harassment, assault or abuse at school, and for worried adults and professionals that need support and guidance, including for historic abuse.
New NSPCC helpine, Report Abuse in Education on 0800 136 663 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Standards and Expectations – Restless Excellence
As we head into the final week of a very busy half term, I wanted to take the opportunity to share my reflections since we returned to school in March after a period of lockdown and remote learning. My starting point is that it has been a period of happiness and joy in being able to finally interact and engage with so many wonderful children and young people at the same time as recognising the difficulties and challenges we have all experienced during the past year.
Since returning to school, we have been using the term ‘restless excellence’ at every opportunity to remind ourselves that a successful school community should be built upon mutual respect, shared values and most importantly a commitment and dedication to self-improvement.
I share the success story of the New Zealand ‘All Blacks’. They hold a phenomenal record and an achievement matched by no other elite team, in any code. They have achieved a win rate over the last 100 years of just over 75%. However, this has not happened by accident. Whilst no doubt enjoying their successes, the ‘All Blacks’ have created a culture around the mantra of ‘better people make better all blacks’.
On reflection, this is the culture that we are striving to achieve at Plymstock School. We have a similar mantra of ‘be the very best you can be’. It is important to recognise that to be the very best, individuals will need to understand that despite setbacks and disappointments they must develop a mindset where they continue to strive for excellence. This requires determination, resilience and perseverance at the same time as remaining grounded and humble to show kindness, respect and manners.
I share this as some of this has been lost over the last few weeks. Whilst the large majority of students should be recognised and congratulated for ensuring they take responsibility for adhering to our very high standards and expectations, there are a few that have allowed themselves to develop a ‘fixed’ mindset’, where they respond to challenges and difficulties with the approach of ‘I can’t’ rather than ‘I will try’.
Whilst it is recognised that the circumstances of the lockdown will have contributed to this mindset, it is really important that children and young people should have a mutual appreciation for a strong work ethic, mutual respect and kindness, as well having the highest expectations of themselves and others.
Focusing back on the relentless success of the ‘All Blacks’, a key focus of their culture was that ‘champions do extra’. This approach simply means finding incremental ways to do better, which is wonderfully captured using the Japanese term ‘Kaizen’ meaning ‘continuous improvement’.
This is the approach that we should all embrace. We will continue to challenge and hold students to account around the basic standards and expectations on attendance, punctuality, uniform, equipment for learning, PE kit, behaviour, mutual respect, manners, kindness and work ethic. At Plymstock School we truly believe that by getting these simple things right, it allows all individuals to go onto achieve their talents and abilities and ‘be the very best they can be’.