Principal's Update: Welcome Back
As this is my first Principal’s update of 2018, may l take this opportunity to welcome our students back to Leeds West Academy for the second term of the 2017-18 academic year. The term ahead is set to be extremely busy for Leeds West Academy, for both its students and staff.
On our Staff Training Day on 2nd January, all staff were engaged in a series of workshops aimed at further establishing our Positive Behaviour policy, in order to ensure it is upheld fairly and consistently across all areas of our academy. This training complemented a series of assemblies for our students, reinforcing our expectations and rewards and benefits that come with outstanding behaviour and conduct. Since returning to school on 3rd January, our students have responded extremely positively. I would like to thank our students and parents for their ongoing support in playing their part in bringing about further significant improvement in our academy.
Our Year 11 students have now completed their first wave of trial examinations in preparation for their final GCSE examinations this summer. With just 17 school weeks remaining until the examination season commences, the feedback that our teachers will provide in response to these trial exams will be vital in focusing our Year 11 students on key areas for improvement and revision. The conduct of the Year 11 students during these exams has generally been excellent so I would like to thank our students for their effort and engagement.
Saturday School launched this week for a small cohort of Year 11 Maths students. The sessions ,led by Mr Lyons, aim to boost the confidence and skills of selected students. Students attend a one hour slot that is tailored to their specific needs.
This term we will continue our relentless focus on the quality of teaching, ensuring that every student has a fair and equal opportunity to succeed in every lesson. We have now completed our second cycle of formal quality assurance, following a whole-academy scrutiny of the quality of work in students’ books and folders. Not only does this provide us with a clear view of the level of pride our students take in their work, but we can see clearly the rate of progress that is being made which provides an indication of the quality of teaching from which your child benefits, each and every day. I am pleased to report that books and folders are marked frequently by teachers. Within this marking, teachers explain the strengths in your child’s work, and the key focus areas that will secure strong progress. Purple Zone, our key initiative to drive regular periods of silent, hard-work during lessons, is embedding really well and whilst we still have some way to go to ensure this is consistently challenging in all subjects, we are really pleased with the way our students and staff have responded to this crucial aspect of our work. This will remain a key area of focus throughout this year.
There are several key events taking place in the weeks ahead. Tickets are on sale for our academy production of “Billy Elliot”, perhaps our most ambitious production to date. There will be five evening performances between Monday 29th January and Friday 2nd February, each starting at 7.30pm. Our students and staff have been working tirelessly in preparation for what promises to be a spectacular performance. Please order your tickets now to avoid disappointment! www.ticketsource.co.uk/leedswestacademy.
I would like to take this opportunity to make you are aware of some key dates for the term ahead. It is important to note these dates as they reflect some changes to the published calendar:
- Parents’ Consultation Evenings:
- o Year 10 – Monday 22nd January 2018 4pm – 7pm
- o Year 11 – Monday 5th February 2018 4pm – 7pm
- o Year 8 Consultation Evening and Options Advice – Wednesday 21st February 2018 4pm – 7.30pm
- Other key dates
- o Year 10 Work Experience – 5th – 9th February 2018
- o Half Term – break up Friday 9th February return Monday 19th February 2018
In closing, I would like to thank you for your ongoing support in ensuring your child attends school and engages positively. This is an extremely important term for Leeds West Academy and I am very much looking forward to working with you. I wish you all the very best for 2018.