Update for parents and carers: Thursday 24th November – Monday 16th January
This academic year is now in ‘full flow’ and I will repeat what I ask regularly: Where does the time go? We remain delighted with the positive attitudes shown by our pupils, who encompass our firm belief that at Holy Trinity you can ‘achieve anything’.
Shortly, our community of faith will be entering into the blessed Advent Season. This coming Advent, is divided into two parts. The first part from November 27th (First Sunday of Advent) to December 16th, prepares us for the coming of Christ. The second part, from December 17th to December 24th, focuses on the first coming of Jesus, ‘God made man’, the ‘word made flesh’. During Advent, we are invited to contemplate our faith and very much look forward to celebrating the birth of Christ on the 25th December. We take great encouragement from the Christmas message of hope and everlasting ‘peace on earth’. During this special season, we gain reassurance and strength in these words from the prophet Isaiah: ‘Look, our God is coming to save us’ (Isa 35:4). In the daily challenges faced at the moment, this hopeful promise, renews our optimism about all things being overcome, with God being with us and never changing. We pray the following ‘Walk with Me’ Prayer during this Advent season:
Lord God, our light and our salvation, we praise you for your gifts of life and faith. We thank you for the desire that you have planted in our hearts: our yearning to see your face. Help us to meet you in prayer, to walk in your ways, and to speak to others of our joy and consolation in your presence. Give us faithfulness in this present life so that we may come to know and praise your beauty, with all our brothers and sisters in the life to come. We make this prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen
A huge thank you in advance for your contribution to our annual Hamper and Shoebox Advent Charity Appeals. As a school we appreciate all that is donated, especially now during these challenging financial times.
Revised School Mission Statement: latest update
Very latest amendments / additions, highlighted in bold:
Holy Trinity Catholic School serves the local community; Christ is at the centre of our school and our greatest example. Our school is a place where uniqueness and diversity is celebrated and respected because we know and believe that we are united as children of God and created in His image. Through acts of love and learning, we grow in knowledge and spirituality, we are inspired to become successful citizens and are understanding, compassionate and loving to all of humanity.
With thanks to all parents who have sent in suggestions as part of our wider community stakeholder feedback. We aim to finalise this work prior to the Christmas break with our new ‘Mission Statement’ fully in place from January.
A culture of encouragement and achievement at Holy Trinity:
- A huge well-done to Year 11 pupils following the completion of a highly successful ‘Mock Examination’ process. Attendance to exams and adherence to all of the strict examinations processes, has been exemplary from pupils. Pupils have seized this opportunity to continue with a positive momentum towards success in summer exams. Teachers will be providing all important feedback to youngsters in the coming days and are looking to hold a ‘Mock Results’ morning in school which will mirror the process of when pupils collect their final outcomes in August. As a school, we are once again predicting high attainment and positive progress for this Year 11 cohort.
- A huge well-done to Year 10 pupils for their engagement and participation in special ‘Revision Workshops’ during this term. To ensure that youngsters are ‘Year 11 ready, school is providing them with a number of useful strategies to support in the retention and retrieval of key information. Year 10 pupils are getting into very good habits and I am delighted with their attitudes to learning!
- In October, our students worked hard to produce excellent entries to take part in a National Poetry Competition. We are pleased to announce that every single entry was selected to be published! We now have eleven soon-to-be published poets and could not be prouder! Once again, Holy Trinity pupils have worked diligently, with their dedication being recognised nationally. We can’t wait to share the final product with all of the school community.
- A huge well-done to the following Sports Teams for their successes this term:
Year 7&8 Girls Football Team – Won the 1st placed trophy at Small Heath and Central, local schools football tournament
Year 8&9 Girls Football Team – Achieved 1st place in the Central Sports Partnership friendly competition at Waverley Secondary School
Year 10 Boys Football Team – Won the 1st placed trophy at Small Heath and Central, local schools football tournament
Year 11 Boys Football Team – Won the 1st placed trophy at Small Heath and Central, local schools football tournament
A team of KS3 students played in the Central Sports Partnership Badminton tournament on Monday 14th November. Pupils all played really well and eventually came 3rd overall! Well done to the students who took part. This success is especially impressive, since badminton has only just been re-introduced into our curriculum following the building of our new Sports Hall!
We are delighted with all of this success and despite the additional cost, have been very happy to install an additional trophy cabinet in school!
Safeguarding Update from Mrs Daw (Deputy Headteacher)
We would like to remind parents and carers of the importance of monitoring the digital usage of their children. This includes usage of the internet and also social media usage. Whilst there are many advantages to the internet, there may also be clear dangers with social media and the unregulated use of a number of apps which are in existence and are not safe for young people, leaving children at risk of communicating with strangers, being exploited and or groomed online. The school curriculum focusses carefully on teaching children about online safety and the importance of ‘digital civility’ and appropriate and safe behaviours. Complemented with close parental monitoring and supervision, this supports with safe social media and internet usage outside of school. On our school website, there are several resources to support parents and carers with understanding how they can keep their children safe in this digital age. School also plans to run parental workshops in the new year, so please look out for the texts which will share the finalised arrangements before the Christmas break. If you have any concerns about your child’s safety online, please contact your child’s Head of year in the first instance. We have 10 colleagues, who have completed their Designated Senior Teacher training in Safeguarding. Colleague names and photographs, are displayed prominently in our schools reception and on this website. Please don’t hesitate to approach them with any questions are concerns.
A reminder of a key safety message recently sent to parents:
‘Due to the increased risks posed by the darker mornings and evenings; we are strongly advising that pupils do not hang around at local shops or parks and come into school straight away in the morning and go straight home at the end of the school day. Parental support in reinforcing this key message is very important’. Mr Crehan
A reminder of our High Standards and Expectations:
- Pupils are reminded of our ‘no hands’ policy which is in place to protect the safety of all.
- Pupils must have a blazer, tie and shirts to be tucked in at all times.
- Pupils must wear plain black footwear without any coloured logos/laces.
- Pupils will no longer be permitted to arrive to school in their PE Kits, they will have access to our new Sports Hall facilities for changing.
- Pupils must have a planner/day planner and at least a clear pencil case containing essential items such as:
- black/blue pen
- green pen
- Punctuality to form time and lessons must be excellent.
- PE kit must be in line with our Uniform policy, there should be no branding on kits as they must be plain.
- Hoodies are not permitted to be worn, all coats/jackets must be worn on top of blazers.
- Jackets/coats must be plain with no large branding, denim jackets and gilets are not permitted to be worn in School.
- There must be no piercings or jewellery worn – pupils will be asked to remove them – clear plastic studs can be worn.
- As we approach winter, it is essential that your child wears a suitable coat for school. As stated, Hoodies are not permitted and should not be worn in place of a suitable outdoor coat. Balaclavas, ski masks, snoods and comparable items of clothing are not permitted. Items will be confiscated if they are seen in school.
- Students must be highly organised ensuring Homework and other tasks are completed on time when set by their teachers.
Attendance and Punctuality Update from Ms Hodson (Assistant Headteacher, Personal Development):
Going for Gold: 241 pupils have achieved 100% attendance so far and are on track to achieving ‘Gold Status’ at the end of this academic year. It is not too late for your child to achieve silver and join our Hall of Fame! A big well done to Year 7 for being the best attending year group in autumn 1- what a fantastic start to the year! Thank you to all parents who continue to support with our drive on good attendance and punctuality. Good attendance is essential in ensuring that your child reaches their full potential and improves their chance of success post 16. Developing good habits at school will help set them up for life and will support with your child’s career and prospects. Those who attend, ‘Achieve’.
We would like to take this opportunity to share some key reminders about attendance and punctuality. Holidays should be arranged outside of term time only. Missing school is detrimental to your child’s opportunity to progress, therefore, school will not authorise any holidays taken during term time. Parents will risk being fined if they take their child out of school. Your child will not gain back the time lost, each day away from school will result in 5 hours of lost learning. Pupils should aim for good attendance of 95% or above. Please see the table below as a reminder of how much learning is lost when your child does not attend school.
The school day begins at 8.40am. Any pupil arriving after this time is late. Pupils arriving late will be issued with an L1 break-time detention. If your child fails to attend the L1 detention it will be escalated to a 30-minute L3 detention, after school. Failure to comply will result in a C4 detention. Parents should ring the school office if they know that their child will be late to school.5 minutes late each day is the equivalent of missing 3 days of school during an academic year! We appreciate your efforts with getting your child to school, on time, every day.
‘My Child At School’
We invite you to regularly log into ‘My Child At School’ to monitor how your child is getting on at school. You will find out whether your child is completing homework, receiving any consequences or being awarded positive behaviour points. Pupil timetables, the school calendar and attendance records are also available. Please visit www.mychildatschool.com. The school ID is 11389. The school does not have access to your password information. You can request a new invitation code from home or if you have added an email address to the account you can click ‘forgotten login details’ and follow instructions that will email you the details.
Wider community use of our school and sports facilities:
Alongside our Academy partners, Holy Trinity is working with an external advisor to evaluate the strength of our site provision, with a view to introduce more access and use for the wider community. As key community stakeholders, we really want to hear your views. Please access the link underneath and complete the short questionnaire. There is a £30 Argos voucher ‘prize draw’, which all who complete the survey will be automatically entered to win! The survey will close on 20th December 2022. Good luck and thank you!
The response link is:
A regular reminder regarding car parking:
In a regular reminder, it is important to remember, that driving and parking near our Oakley Road Entrance Point, continues to be highly problematic at ‘drop off’ and ‘collection’ times. This is something that we continue to work on with local residents to improve. I am delighted that our newly elected Year 11 Senior Prefect Team, are devising a strategy to see what we can do as a community to help with this situation. As a result of this work, we have placed cones on the entrance point at Oakley Road which is marked ‘keep clear’ to support with health and safety and a better experience for all parents. In a future Parent Association meeting, we will review this system and gain some initial feedback. Ensuring that all pupils enter and exit the School Building safely, is a number on priority. I ask that parents continue to be patient and understanding of this situation as we all endeavour to support one another as best as possible. Thank you.
Ofsted Inspection Update:
An Ofsted Inspection remains overdue and we can expect to go through this process as a community, in due course. Parents will be informed immediately via text and later through letter, when we receive confirmation of an Ofsted visit. We will do what we always ask of our children, which is to give ‘our very best’. As parents, you will be invited to complete a ‘Parental Questionnaire’ as part of the inspection, similar to what you complete in school during every Progress / Information Evenings. We welcome the opportunity for parents to have their view and will inform you immediately about how you access the questionnaire. I will keep you informed of all inspection developments throughout this year. A recent School Improvement Review, evaluated our school as having many strengths and highlighted a number of areas that we should celebrate as ‘best practice’. Although very happy with this evaluation, we appreciate that we are nor perfect and our ‘school culture’ requires for us to continually strive to get better and to improve.
Some key dates for up and coming events:
|Thursday 24th November
|Year 10 Parents Evening (3.45pm – 6.00pm)
|Friday 9th November
|Non school uniform day. A voluntary donation made towards Advent Charity Appeals.
|Friday 9th December
|Parent Association: Food Bank in the school hall to support the needs of the local community in anticipation of the Christmas break (9.15am – 10.30am)
|Friday 9th December
|Year 7 & Year Disco / Christmas Party (3.30pm – 5.30pm)
|Wednesday 14th December
|Sacrament of Reconciliation: Confessions in school for staff and pupils (9.30am onwards)
|Wednesday 14th December
|St Teresa of Calcutta MAC Carol Service at Sacred Heart and Holy Souls Catholic Church, Acocks Green. Parents will be able to view the concert via live-stream (1.00pm – 2.30pm). More details to follow.
|Thursday 15th December
|Extended tutor time until 11.00 which will include end of term Advent Mass.
Christmas lunch served for staff and pupils. KS3 pupils to start lunch earlier (from 1.00pm)
|Thursday 15th December
|Following a successful completion of Mock Examination process, Year 11 to be rewarded with an earlier break up for their Christmas holiday! Year 11 to enjoy ‘Celebration Assembly’ before being dismissed for their break at the end of p5.
|Friday 16th December
|Non school uniform day. A voluntary donation made towards Advent Charity Appeals. Pupils to spend the morning with their Form Tutors. Some of this time to be spent in end of term ‘Celebration Assemblies’. Pupils are dismissed from 12.15 to begin their Christmas break.
|Tuesday 3rd January
|INSET Day for Staff Only
|Wednesday 4th January
|All pupils return to school (from 8.35)
|Thursday 12th January
|Year 11 Parents Evening (3.45pm – 6.00pm)
The continued strong partnership between school and home, is at the foundation of the successes that we continue to celebrate. If for whatever reason you have any issues or concerns, please contact your child’s Form Tutor / Head of Year in the first instance. If at any point you require further support in resolving a particular situation, please escalate your concerns to a member of the Senior Leadership team. As Headteacher, I always welcome dialogue with parents informally on the school gate, through a conversation on the telephone, an email dialogue or more formally in a request to meet with me in person. Please contact school reception if you wish to speak with me. If at any point you are not satisfied with our schools response, there are further channels available to parents in order to raise their concerns. Please contact school reception if you require any additional information and clarity regarding the processes for raising formal complaints.
‘At Holy Trinity, we want all pupil to be able to leave with a world of opportunities at their feet; for them to reach their fullest of potentials; to believe in themselves, and to achieve their wildest dreams’.
Thank you for your continued support.
Paper copies of this document are available from reception upon request.
Wishing all of our community a restful, peaceful and happy Christmas break when it arrives!
Headteacher: Holy Trinity Catholic School
Thursday 24th November 2022