APPOINTMENT OF INTERIM CEO AND MOVE TO MULTI ACADEMY TRUST (MAT)
Governors are delighted to announce the appointment of Alan Hardie, a National Leader of Education and Principal of Whitburn CofE Academy in South Tyneside, as Interim Chief Executive Officer.   Alan will be working with our Principal Directors on a part-time basis to support teaching and learning across phases and the move to a MAT.
   “I was delighted to be asked to support the Academy through its transition to a Multi Academy Trust and I look forward to meeting and working with staff, governors, students and parents/carers. The Academy clearly has many strengths but no one is under any illusions that we need to do more to ensure that outcomes for all students match the aspirations set out in our ethos.”   Alan Hardie.
Multi Academy Trust
Governors are pleased to confirm that our move to become a MAT has now been approved by the Regional Schools Commissioner and formalities are underway to ensure that the transition is as seamless as possible.  Once everything is in place, a meeting with parents will be organised as promised to you in my letter of 5 February.
John Brearley
Chair of Governors

 

* SNOW ADVICE *

MONDAY 5th MARCH: ALL CAMPUSES ARE OPEN NORMALLY

We continually monitor changes in the weather to judge whether our campuses and/or travel arrangements could be affected.  Closure to the Academy, or an individual campus, will be made only as a last resort.

You should assume that the Academy is open unless you have seen a closure notice which will be on this website, and Tweeted by our main NCEA twitter feeds.  We will try to update this notice by 7.15am each morning.

It is with regret that the Beauty and the Beast rehearsal scheduled for this Sunday 4th March has been cancelled due to the severity of the weather.

Children can practice at home by clicking on the link below. There are practise tracks and a copy of the script. If this does not work, students can practise singing their parts along to YouTube videos. Please thank your child for all their hard work so far – there are a lot of lines to learn and they have all done very well!

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/199E4Kncz0qHf-_o0mbZQR4zaFhrm0Pvf?usp=sharing

Sorry for any inconvenience and thank you for your understanding and continued support.

Kind Regards
Mrs R Glanville
Head of Music Development

Bank of England Chief Economist Goes Back to School

Young bankers at the Josephine Butler Primary Campus had a new trainee cashier to put through his paces – the chief economist of the Bank of England.

Named by TIME magazine as one of the Top 100 most influential people in the world, Andy Haldane works with the governor of the bank to decide what the base rate of interest should be.

He took time out from his office in Threadneedle Street, London, to visit the school’s LifeSavers Bank.

The bank has been running for over a year and is setting the benchmark nationally for how the LifeSavers programme can be integrated into the curriculum and school life.

Each week, children can make a deposit into their account and see their savings grow. It is part of a wider programme that aims to teach children from nursery upwards and their families about managing finances – from APR and savings to bagging the best deal in the supermarket.

With attitudes towards money formed as young as seven, it is hoped the LifeSavers programme will promote lifelong good habits.

Mr Haldane said: “The school’s bank is brilliant and the children’s pleasure and pride in running it is clear.

“Through the LifeSavers programme they are learning about maths in an interesting way and also about money and the importance of saving for the future.”

Cashier Bobbi-Jo, said: “I really enjoy helping to run the bank. One of the best parts is seeing the smiles on the faces of the younger children when they find out how much they have saved.”

Fellow cashier Sian, Y6, added: “He talked to us about interest rates and about saving to get things that you’d like to buy and also for retirement. I felt really proud that he came from the Bank of England to see how we run our bank at school.”

LifeSavers is a financial education programme for primary schools, helping children and their families manage money wisely. It provides training and resources for teachers, offers support for school savings clubs, and encourages parental and wider community engagement.

LifeSavers is a partnership between the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Just Finance Foundation and Young Enterprise, with financial support from Virgin Money and the Government.

Mr Haldane also spoke to parents at the school to find out more about how they were affected by the cost of living and heard concerns that ranged from the impact of universal credit, through to the rising cost of everyday essentials, the prevalence of loan companies, lack of local jobs and poor transport links.

He also visited Hirst Welfare Centre, where he discussed regional perspectives on the economy with students studying economics at the Academy’s sixth form, JBVI.

Along with his team, he makes regular trips around the country to help him better understand what is happening in the real economy. Through regional Agencies, the bank is also carrying out engagement activities with schools to try and make both the bank and economics more accessible to people.

Mrs Cole, deputy headteacher of the Josephine Butler Primary Campus, said: “It was a real honour to welcome Mr Haldane and his colleagues to our school. The success of the bank is down to the children who run it with such enthusiasm and all our brilliant savers.

“We have also had excellent feedback from parents too. Financial management is a vital skill to learn and LifeSavers is a great programme to support us in doing that.”

Read more about what Mr Haldane thought about his visit on his BLOG

Spelling Bee Has Pupils Buzzing

Hundreds of primary pupils at the Northumberland Church of England Academy went head-to-head in the search to crown the school’s first spelling bee champions.

All children across the five primary campuses took part, with two winners from each class going on to compete in the grand final at the Josephine Butler Campus.

Thanks to generous sponsorship from local housing group Bernicia, the finalists were awarded a specially-made rosette, with the winners taking home their own Spelling Bee mascot ‘Bernie Bee’ and a spelling dictionary.

After a nail-biting finish, which saw children tackle challenging words from beyond their age groups, the winners were Chloe, Y2, Lachlan, Y4 and Sian, Y6.

Sian said: “I feel really happy and proud to win. Making spellings into a competition made it fun and I’ve really enjoyed taking part. I was nervous at first, but once I’d done my first word, I felt a lot better.”

The contest is the latest cross-campus initiative that has helped drive a rapid rise in standards across the primaries. In the summer, the Academy recorded its best primary results and progress scores at the end of Key Stage 2 were in the top 10% nationally in both reading and maths and in the top 20% for writing.

The Great NCEA Spelling Bee was organised by Mrs Cole and Mrs Weatheritt.

Mrs Cole, deputy head of the Josephine Butler Primary Campus, said: “Learning their spellings can sometimes seem a bit dull for children and so we really wanted to bring them to life and create a bit of excitement around it.

“We came up with the idea of the spelling bee and the feedback has been fantastic and has really raised the profile of spellings around the campuses.

“All classes had their own mini spelling bees and the winning boy and girl were then selected to compete in the grand final.

“We are so proud of how hard everyone has tried to learn their words and it has been wonderful to see the children have the confidence to stand up in front of their friends too.”

Mrs Weatheritt added: “We are very grateful to Bernicia for sponsoring the initiative, as it enabled us to give all the winners some fantastic prizes in recognition of their hard work.

“We now hope this will become an annual event and be even bigger and better next year.”

Steve Burke, team leader for customer involvement at Bernicia, said: “We are delighted to be supporting such an inspiring event that has clearly generated so much enthusiasm amongst pupils and created a real buzz about the importance of spellings.

“As an organisation, we are committed to providing support, advice and guidance to help our tenants and residents of the local communities and it is a honour that the official mascot ‘Bernie Bee’ has been named after Bernicia.”