Bags of Help for New James Knott Garden

Children at the James Knott Campus celebrated the grand opening of their new outdoor area with a traditional summer garden party.

Thanks to the public vote, the school was awarded £12,000 from the Tesco Bags of Help scheme.

Designed by pupils, the ‘Making Outdoors Matter’ project features weaved willow domes and tunnels, bug hotels, wildflower areas and allotment beds.  The imaginative space will provide a wide range of exciting opportunities for outdoor learning and adventure.

Following months of hard work, the garden was officially opened by Ashington gardener, Sean Murray, winner of a nationwide TV competition to design a garden at Chelsea Flower Show.

Sean, a former nurse who launched a career as a professional garden designer following his win, was impressed with the results.

 He said: “It is fantastic how this area has been transformed into a creative space that I am sure will fire young people’s imaginations.

 “I believe it is important to inspire the next generation of gardeners and schemes like this that enable schools to offer outdoor learning  environments are a great idea.”

Caroline Mullen, headteacher at the James Knott Campus, said: “The children have been involved throughout the whole project, from design through to completion.

 “We are delighted with the results and it will make a real difference to life at the school, providing lots of opportunities for outdoor learning and to discover more about our environment.

 “We would like to thank everyone who has made this possible.”

Tesco teamed up with Groundwork to launch the second round of its Bags of Help funding initiative, which sees grants of £12,000, £10,000 and £8,000 – all raised from the 5p bag levy – being awarded to local outdoor community projects.

 Millions of shoppers voted in stores up and down the country, with the James Knott Garden winning the top prize.

 Groundwork’s national chief executive, Graham Duxbury, said: “It’s projects like these that really help to capture the public’s imagination by illustrating what can be achieved when communities are given the support and the encouragement they need to create better places where they live.”

Silver Medal for Y5 Boys Footballers


Congratulations to our Y5 Boys’ Football team who competed in the School Games Finals. and finished second overall –  claiming a Silver Medal.  A huge achievement!
Congratulations also to our Y5/6 Girls Football team, Y4 Boys Football team and our Y5/6 Quadkids Athletics Team who also qualified for the Finals.

Catch of the Day

A group of children from the Josephine Butler Primary Campus and their families enjoyed a fantastic day at Fontburn Reservoir, organised by Northumbria Trout and Salmon Conservation and Northumbria Water.

Headteacher Mrs Marriott said: “The group soon put their new found angling skills into action and brought around 10 trout and salmon home.

“One of the children even caught a tagged fish within five minutes of arriving – usually worth a £200 bonus! Instead they gave us a free day pass which we will raffle at our summer fair.

“The guys at the reservoir also put some fish into the water from the nursery, so the children could learn about sustainable fishing. It was a tremendous day.
“I took home some of the fish and having been taught how to gut and clean it, I then cooked it and brought it into school for the children to try the next day, it was delicious!”
To find our more about fishing at Fontburn click here

Careers Guidance Success Celebrated at London Event

The Academy is proud to be involved in a national initiative to transform the way schools deliver career programmes across the North East.

To celebrate the success of the Good Career Guidance Benchmarks Pilot and look to the future, the Gatsby Foundation welcomed career leaders, headteachers and key individuals from the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to an event at the British Academy, London.

The event was a chance to highlight the excellent work of the 16 schools and colleges who piloted the benchmarks and to collate some learnings from the two-year pilot. Discussions concentrated on important next steps for embedding the benchmarks in schools and colleges across England.

Lord Sainsbury, who spoke at the event, expressed his thanks and his awe at the hard work and determination of the people in the room who ensured the North East pilot had such a positive impact.

Sir John Holman, who was commissioned by Gatsby to map out what good career guidance should look like in the UK and subsequently developed the Good Career Guidance Benchmarks, said:

“This occasion showcased the national importance of the pilot and confirmed that career leaders and headteachers from the North East pilot will be key players in Gatsby’s future work. It was a wonderful day, full of uplifting stories about the people who really matter – young people starting out in life.”

Ryan Gibson, National Facilitator for the Good Career Guidance Benchmarks Pilot at the NE LEP, said:

“The programme has been transformational in terms of improving students’ access to careers education and helping them develop the skills employers need.

“The initiatives the North East LEP has developed as part of the Career Guidance Benchmarks pilot have improved collaboration between the business community and the education sector, as well as provide teaching staff with workplace training and personal development opportunities to better equip them with the knowledge and skills to provide effective careers advice to students.”


NCEA’s Careers and Employability Manager, Mark Fox, said:

“From World of Work careers fairs to work experience placements and close links with industry, the pilot has had a massive impact on careers advice in the Academy.

“At the recent Young Enterprise Presentation, we had three students from JBVI who had never done anything like that before, but who stood up in front of 150 VIPs and talked about their experiences of an 18-month employability skills course. It was a very proud moment.

“Sixth form student, Jerry Garratt, also has a regular work experience placement at Koast Radio and now has his own show.

“Careers leads from pilot schools have been asked to be Gatsby advocates and start spreading the word about the eight benchmarks around the North East first, then further to the rest of England. It is widely anticipated that the benchmarks will form a cornerstone of the new national careers strategy due out before the end of the year.”

Find out more and see some of the pilot’s work in action at the Academy here:




Find out more about careers advice at NCEA HERE

Medal Haul for NCEA Athletes

Congratulations to our athletes who competed for East Northumberland in the Northumberland County Championships at Gateshead Stadium on Saturday.

We returned with a 6 medal haul:
  • Kayla Devon: Winner Long Jump and Triple Jump
  • Andrew Knight: Winner Shot Putt  – breaking a 30-year championship record!
  • Sol Page: 2nd High Jump
  • Luke Southern: 3rd High Jump
  • Bailey Robison: 3rd Triple Jump
Well done to Mia Key, Kyle Hargreaves, Aaron Dodds and Bethany Redden who also competed well on the day.

Young Gardeners Show they are Bloomin Marvellous

Green-fingered two-year-olds have been helping to add a splash of colour to the Lynemouth Early Years Centre.

Inspired by The Very Hungry Caterpillar, the children planted flowers to learn about growing and taking care of our environment.

They also discovered how flowers bring insects into the garden and how we have to take special care of them as well as our flowers, watering them and being gentle.

Are you eligible for 30 hours free childcare?

The Government is introducing new ways to help parents with childcare costs when 30 hours
childcare for three to four-year-olds becomes available in September 2017.

We are trying to assess the childcare needs of parents to see if there is a demand for additional provision (this may be in partnership with other childcare providers).

For more information and to see if you are eligible for 30 hours free childcare, please visit the Childcare Choices website

A copy of the letter and form sent home to parents & carers can be found here

Revision Sessions for Y11 Students

Dear Parents/Carers of Year 11 students,

Due to the fact that some year 11 students will finish their exams this week, we have put together bespoke revision sessions for students who still have exams left to complete.

The following table highlights the times that the students need to be in the Academy (if they have revision sessions or exams). If students are not mentioned in this table then they do not need to attend the Academy.

Whenever students are in the Academy they must be in full uniform as usual.

Download a copy here or view below: