Category: Latest News

With spring in the air and the local Pigeon’s getting ready for their annual courtyard nesting, the Learning Support team have been honing the skills of DT, Art and creative media to record the more than welcomed change in the seasons.

Easter Bunnies have been made and with the arrival of local pigeon chicks, imminent, this is a sure sign that spring is on its way!

The Duke of Edinburgh students are making great progress in learning new skills towards their Bronze Award.

New skills being learnt are wood carving, improving on drawing skills, learning a new crochet stitch pattern, and learning how to read, write and speak Korean.

On 26 February 2024, 16 students across years 7 to 10 successfully took part in lifesaving CPR training sponsored by the British Heart Foundation.

Students used an online platform called Classroom RevivR and were able to get hands on experience of CPR and defibrillator training via technology within the classroom.

BBC Look North reporter Crispin Rolfe has visited the Academy to report on our new flexible working timetable.  He interviewed the Principal, Clare Barber, teachers who benefit from the flexible rota, and students.

The introduction of the timetable comes at no additional cost to the Academy and staff still work full time.  Ms Barber told Mr Rolfe that the timetable allows teachers to have similar flexible working opportunities as people in other jobs.  She added that teachers get the opportunity to be ‘masters of their own time’ and it was about giving ‘professional trust’ to them.

Teaching staff are allocated free periods within their timetables once a fortnight to plan and prepare for lessons.  They can do this in school or working from home for a day.

Five teaching staff so far are part of this new initiative, which Ms Barber describes as a ‘monumental change’.

For the full BBC Look North broadcast, please click here.

New Grantham School Rota Allows Teachers To Work From Home BBC News

We are delighted to have been Ofsted rated as Good with Outstanding features.

The inspection team noted that the school ‘serves its pupils with expert care, love and kindness’ and that ‘pupils’ behaviour is exemplary’ and ‘they are an absolute credit to the school and its community’.  A full copy of the report is on this link: Ofsted Report January 2024

Thank you to all of our parents, carers and the local community for your continued support of our academy, as we celebrate this momentous occasion.

Year 11 students have attended a talk delivered by Colour Sergeant Fraser McLennan of the Royal Navy.

He spoke to students about the perks of a career in the forces and the many career opportunities that are on offer, including continuing their studies with the Royal Navy and apprenticeship opportunities. He also introduced the students to the ‘Role Finder’, which can be accessed by clicking on this link: https://www.royalnavy.mod.uk/careers/find-a-role

This week in Collective Worship we have been celebrating Children’s Mental Health Week, with the theme ‘My Voice Matters!’

Students have been creative with exploring what matters to them in a reflection and wellbeing activity.

Our International Film Club enrichment group wish all a Happy Chinese New Year and good luck in the Year of the Dragon新年快樂

STEM club was very fragrant this week with the aromas of vanilla and rose water.

With valentines round the corner the students used their time to produce some colourful and pungent bath bombs. As can be seen from the pictures some were more successful than others! The clean-up operation was also a bit hit and miss but the laboratory smells quite nice.

In honour of Holocaust Memorial Day, students have been thinking about the past and present suffering of the Jewish people.

Students contributed to a Memorial Flame:

  • yellow flames carry messages to survivors of the Holocaust and expressions of love and sympathy, and
  • orange flames ask the students to consider how they might feel if they were persecuted because of who they are.

Our students made us very proud once again with their thoughtful and mature responses.

This week saw years 9 and 11 enter the football county cup. Both teams played very strong opposition and found the going tough. The year 11 team lost 13-1 to Louth grammar school with Keanan Burnett scoring the only goal of the game for West Grantham. The attitude, spirit and commitment shown by the year 11 boys in adverse conditions is it credit to the team.

A mixture of year 8 and 9 played in the year 9 county cup draw. Again, another tough draw against a selective grammar school saw the team work hard but suffered a heavy defeat. Credit to the team as they never stopped trying despite the scoreline.

The STEM club are a very enthusiastic group and enjoyed the combination of maths and science, this week they had the privilege of Mr Hulse who helped the students calculate the speed of sound.

Art Club students experienced a really nice relaxed atmosphere at the end of a busy week on Friday.  The students had the choice of clay sculpting, teaching one another to crochet or creating a drawing from their imagination.

In contrast, the Dodgeball Club was back this week with no-one safe from the flying dodgeballs!  Mr Brown reminded students of the finer rules of the sport before again being drowned out by the noise of enthusiastic play.

Book Club had a more sedentary feel, with students and staff playing a game of Book Bingo.  Miss Jackson was the enthusiastic bingo caller adding to the fantastic atmosphere.

Debate Club considered a ban on the use of slang terms in school.  There were some very interesting views on writing texts and the need for accurate punctuation and grammar.  The long-term aim of the club is to develop the debating skills of the students and enter local debating school competitions.

As part of  Global Wordsearch Day on Tuesday, Miss Mackintosh organised a giant 100 word wordsearch.  This proved very popular with students and as a team they completed the puzzle in rapid time!

Thank you to all parents and carers who attended the sleep workshop and to Dave Gibson for presenting the session.

There were some really useful tips for establishing an effective sleep routine.

If you were unable to join us for the session, or would like to view the presentation again, please click here.

Clubs were back in full swing this week after the Christmas break, with a distinct focus on fitness!  A number of students are improving their fitness as a New Year’s Resolution and joined Miss McCulley in the Fitness Suite.

The sportiness even spread to the chess club, not sure that PE kit was essential!

In contrast to the New Year /New Me approach in the Fitness Suite, the Drama students who had a very busy pre-Christmas rehearsing for their show, opted for a more sedate Wednesday club activity.  The warm of sleeping lions was a good choice for all!

The sports clubs running for the spring term can be found on this link.

 

 

Year 9 and 10 have made a start on their Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Award. Their first task is to complete their skills, volunteering and physical sections of the award. We are looking forward to seeing how the students progress and can’t wait for the expedition in the warmer, and hopefully drier, months!

Yesterday evening we welcomed family and friends and our Chair of Governors, Martin O’Connell, to watch students perform a ‘Showcase of Creativity’.

Students from Drama Club and Drama Enrichment have worked hard all term to write their own scripts and performed a Christmas themed comedy performance. We had an evil elf stealing Christmas, children running wild at the North Pole and Carollers with attitude arguing with two cheery elves all wonderfully performed by Aliona, Faith, Paul, Aiden, Sophie, Lana, Mina, Axel, Lola-Rose, Izzy, Betsy, Aaliyah and Gabe.

The music department had some great acts with Liam, Blaine and Rysz  performing a tribute to Metallica that had the audience rocking, Keira and Amelia showing off what they have been learning at keyboard club and treating us to a rendition of Jingle bells on the piano, and Toni performing a beautiful piano solo.

Lana’s mum had a brilliant surprise with Lana performing a solo on the flute after only having five lessons!

Dance club worked together to choreograph an emotional Christmas themed dance to ‘Have Yourself a Merry little Christmas’.  Our Dance Club performers were Abi, Annabella, Jorgie, Gabriella, Devon, Maisie, Mollie and Amelia.

The school Choir of Libby, Maisie, Bernadette, Amelia, Ellie-Bee, Mollie, Keira and Caitlin closed the show with a rendition of ‘It’s Christmas’.

A big thank you to Miss Blencowe for organising the show and helping the students put together fabulous performances.  Well done everyone!

Students have been rewarded for earning house points for their positive attitude and behaviour.  Those with an overall total of 15 positive points chose from a list of activities to take part in a reward afternoon of their choice.  The choices catered for all interests, with students choosing either a gym session, to take part in a dodgeball tournament, library time with books, board games and chess, and Christmas Crafts. The final reward of the term, a Christmas movie, saw a full house in the hall this afternoon.

Well done to all students who received a reward afternoon this term.

Last week Drama Club were busy with their final rehearsals for the Showcase of Creativity performance this evening.

Miss Blencowe and students have all been working really hard to put together this showcase of talent.

We hope you are coming along to join us for a truly spectacular evening!

Today has been a day of Christmas celebration at West Grantham Academy.

Staff and students have worn their Christmas jumpers in support of the Save the Children charity.  Students and staff have worn an array of festive designs, paired with festive ties, socks and hats!

This morning we walked to St Wulfram’s Church for our annual Christmas Carol Service.  The Service was led by Father Yuce with bible readings from the Head Prefects, Vivien and Lewis.  The staff and students joined the Choir in singing traditional Christmas Carols – a beautiful way to start of day of festivity.

After the Carols, we had our festive Christmas Lunch of roast turkey and all the trimmings.  The catering team served up an amazing meal and were ably supported by the Year 10 Hospitality and Catering students.  Well done to everyone who helped cook, serve, tidy and dance along to Christmas songs.

Happy Christmas everyone!

Mrs Pearson’s GCSE art group have experienced a very active art lesson inspired by the First World War German expressionist artists’ printmaking.

Students cut out Lino tiles based on their self portraits creating repeated patterns on painted backgrounds.

The results are amazing!

The Academy Choir have had a lovely morning singing Christmas carols with the residents of Red Court Care Community.

Andrew Morton, from the Earlsfield Community Church, accompanied the Choir on guitar.

The residents were delighted to receive a gift of a hand crocheted blanket made by students.

The Academy would like to thank Andrew and Grace Morton from Hope Community Café for the generous gift of cakes this morning.  They were a much welcome treat to staff.

Well done to our fabulous Year 10 Hospitality and Catering students who this week have mastered the chocolate yule log.

They look great and tasted even better.  We hope their families managed to get a slice before they were all gone!

The West Grantham Academy Choir have been rehearsing in their enrichment sessions with Mo Power from St Anne’s Church.

This Friday, the Choir were invited to sing Christmas Carols at the Hope Cafe Christmas Lunch, organised by Andrew and Grace Morton.

The Choir sounded amazing and were each gifted with a selection box as thanks for sharing their Christmas.

The fitness suite continues to be a popular club, with the PE department running three clubs a week to accommodate our active students.

STEM club moved on from making pH rainbows to investigating the mechanics of a human hand.  Students each made a fully operational hand, complete with tendons and bones – a great ‘hands’ on way to learn!

As part of our Stay Safe programme, outside agencies have presented a variety of safety awareness workshops to our Year 7 students.  Important subjects covered were:

  • Anti-Social Behaviour
  • Alcohol and drug awareness
  • Online safety
  • Healthy relationships
  • Fire safety

7ALH were really involved with their session on Anti-Social Behaviour.

On Wednesday 5 December, the INEOS Go Humans Academy came to the academy to deliver workshops to Years 7, 9, 10 and 11.

The aim of the workshops is to:

  • Give the students life skills that will help them better understand and support their mental, physical and emotional well-being
  • Ensure students have an accurate positive perception of how they can make incremental changes that help build confidence and self-worth
  • Complement our PSHE programme and help teach acceptance, tolerance and empathy which result in higher levels of respect for each other, and young people who are supportive of one another’s well-being

The Academy is taking part in Bookbuzz, a reading programme from BookTrust that aims to help schools inspire a love of reading in 11 to 13-year-olds.

Year 7 students have been asked to choose a book each from a selection of 16 books chosen by the BookTrust.  Students have chosen a wide range of books from from Dread Wood, a chilling high-school horror, to Onyeka and the Academy of the Sun, a fantasy which combines the best of Percy Jackson and Black Panther to tell the story of a Nigerian girl with superpowers. For those looking for a something a little more factual, we had The Awesome Book of Animals, a colourful guide to all things awesome in the animal kingdom including tree-climbing fish and jellyfish in space. Or they could take a look at Kay’s Marvellous Medicine, a gruesome history of medicine which will have our students squirming in their seats.

This week the books arrived – just in time for Christmas! The children are thrilled with their choices and quickly became engrossed in their chosen book. eagerly sharing facts, pictures and stories with each other.

The BookTrust have also kindly sent us two extra copies of each of the 16 books for our library.

The Year 8 football team, with a sprinkling of ambitious Year 7, have completed in the first round of the Lincolnshire Schools County Cup.

Every player performed brilliantly and competed to the very end of the game, despite playing against a strong opposition.

Unfortunately, the result did not go our way.  However, the students can be really proud of themselves and look forward to future success.

Ms Mackintosh has been busy decorating the library area, with the focus of reading being the inspiration for the Christmas tree.

The Advent Acts of Kindness is a lovely idea with one student a day opening the door to see the day’s act of kindness.

Science is the focus for club news this week.

Students in Science Club have investigated acids and alkalis.  They used a magnetic stirrer to understand how the pH of liquids can be changed. he students were then given a task to create a ‘pH rainbow’.  The results were very impressive.

Due to injury and illness the Year 8 boys football team have exited the County Cup.  Some Year 7 boys joined the team but they were drawn against a highly organised team. Well done to all for participation!

The Boccia club are looking for a new name as they plan to compete against other schools. Mr Gillion is confident that the skills of the team are rocketing and will soon be ready for competitive matches.

This week the Royal Navy have visited the academy to lead a group of Year 10 students in a Ready Steady Cook Challenge.

Students enjoyed cooking their own quiches and mini pavlovas against the clock and then presenting their dishes at the end of the challenge for a taste test.

For some, this was their first time piping and blind baking and they did a superb job!

At the end of the challenge, representatives from the Royal Navy logistics corp and the Royal Marines gave a careers talk about the exciting range of careers and apprenticeships available through the Royal Navy.

Students who have 100% attendance for this term are invited to take part in their choice of reward activity.  They can choose from:

  • A Christmas movie and hot chocolate afternoon
  • Christmas crafts
  • Gym session
  • Dodgeball tournament
  • Science experiments
  • Library time with board games and chess

Well done to all of our students with 100% attendance!

It continues to look a lot like Christmas in the drama and Christmas decorations club, although the thespians atmosphere was much more serious than the more light-hearted ‘elves’ production line. All students are having a great time!

STEM club investigated combustion in different forms this week, Mr Manning has less hairs on his arm as a result!

Hydrogen balloons were a big success, producing a large enough bang for Miss Hajnal to investigate the source of the noise.  Combustion was at the heart of the last experiment (which will be further investigated next week as a means of propulsion).  Propranolol is highly flammable and always an eye-catching demonstration.

Year 10 and 11 BTEC Construction students have been working hard in preparation for their assessments.

Kaden, Year 11, has completed his latest project and is pictured below proudly displaying his hard efforts.  Kaden has been very focussed during this project.

Congratulations go to Toyin Arilewola (Year 9), Holly Bradley (Year 8) and Oliver Kingston (Year 7) who have all been awarded a Certificate of Reading Excellence.

During the first half of the Autumn Term, Toyin, Holly and Oliver have borrowed and read the most books in their respective year groups.

Year 7 and 8 students have taken part in the nationwide TT Rockstars tournament, with three Year 7 students taking the top 3 places.

Nathan Pulford scored 393 points to take 1st place, with Lukas Kuzas coming a very close 2nd with 369 points.  Bowe Wharf scored a highly commendable 296 points to take 3rd place.

Congratulations to all students who took part.

Our enrichment activities continue to go from strength to strength.

This week the food enrichment group have made Arancini balls which got a big thumbs up from Alfie and Jack!

Christmas is not only a focus of our afterschool clubs – our cake decorating group have made a start on Christmas themed edible biscuits.

This week we have been ‘Making a Noise about Bullying’.

Today students and staff have worn odd socks as a symbol of our uniqueness and to promote the acceptance of diversity.

In assemblies, our Anti-bullying Ambassadors and Mental Health Ambassadors were presented with their badges.  Our Ambassadors receive ongoing training and are available during break and lunchtimes to support students who may be struggling with bullying or mental health concerns.

This week the academy has been raising awareness amongst students on the importance of keeping their minds healthy and not just their bodies.

Staff have shared several strategies during the week to encourage students to maintain a healthy mind and have self-awareness of their own mental wellbeing as part of the national NHS Self Care week.

During reflection time next week, students are going to make a self care pledge by choosing one of the strategies shared with them to try and implement in their own lives to aid them in maintaining a mentally healthy lifestyle.

On Monday, Year 8 had their first football fixture against Sir William Robertson Academy.

Despite being 3-1 up at half time, the game went to William Robertson with a 4-3 win.

The team played brilliantly and can be very proud of their performance.

We wish them the best of luck in their first County Cup match next Monday, kicking off at 2.00pm.

Christmas appears to be coming early to West Grantham clubs.

Drama club had an industrious atmosphere with scripts written for the Christmas Performance and  attention on students honing their skills, learning lines, and rehearsing the scenes. The performance on Monday 18 December is eagerly anticipated.

Learning supports elves were equally busy in their Christmas decoration production line.  Mrs Hicks is pushing production hard as the red faces testify!

Next Monday sees the start of the football County Cup, with a home game kicking off at 2.00pm.  A full match report to follow next week.

Music clubs have also started this week:

  • Year 7 and 8 Music – Tuesday lunchtimes
  • Keyboard Club – Friday after school

To attend the after-school club students need to be signed up via the MCAS app.

Today, year 10 students in hospitality and catering tried a range of milk alternatives as part of their work on intolerances and special dietary needs.

Caitlin and Liliana were not impressed with the almond milk while oat milk came out as the firm favourite for all.

Students were selected to represent the Academy on Wednesday 8 November at an event organised by The Ogden Trust. The Ogden Trust is dedicated to increasing the uptake of physics post-16 by supporting education and engagement for all young people.

The students travelled to The King’s School, to participate in a Year 10 STEM day.

They spent the morning learning about the physics behind how a skeleton bob works, before designing and creating their own model skeleton bobs.

These were then launched using pressurised air cannon and fine-tuned in a competition attempt to achieve the greatest distance.

The students then created a poster in their groups detailing their build process and the key forces acting upon a skeleton bob, such as friction and air resistance, as well as investigating other factors in an attempt to answer the hypothesis of the day: what is more important in the skeleton bob event – athlete or machine?

The girls did incredibly well throughout the day.  They were impeccably behaved, worked extremely hard and truly did the school proud.

STEM club launched the electricity project this week, the project will run until Christmas culminating in reverse engineering of a motor to make renewable energy from wind. With access to Mr Butt’s 3D printer, various wind turbine blades will be investigated to generate electricity efficiently.

This week students built a ‘wiggly wire’ steady hand game.

Mr Gillion’s Boccia club has is proving to be highly competitive, especially with staff! Similar to French Boules but for hard indoor surfaces. A perfect sport for experienced hands and newcomers.

Music clubs start next week, permission is needed for after school clubs. Keyboard club has limited availability, 15 places available and sign up with Miss Jackson-Keirle in the music room.

KS3 (Y7, 8) Music Tuesday lunchtimes and Keyboard Club Fridays 3-4 after school.

Monday sees the start of the schools FA cup, year 8 are in action at home and match report to follow.

On Friday we will be wearing our Odd Socks to celebrate our uniqueness!

On Friday staff and students joined in remembrance to remember sacrifices made by those who served in times of war.

David Orridge, Supply Chain Manager at BGB Engineering, has kindly donated a cheque for £500 to the academy to use for its engineering apprenticeship.

The generous donation will be used to support students who are taking the engineering apprenticeship route at GCSE with equipment, such as protective clothing and books to help with their studies.

The school is delighted to be supported by local businesses and looks forward to continued partnership in the future.

This week is National School Meals Week.

The last twelve months have seen the academy review its menus to meet the School Food Standards and receive certification for our Autumn 2023 and Spring 2024 menus.

Our aim is for all students to have a healthy hot dinner every day and to encourage more of our KS4 students to eat in our canteen we will be inviting them to help us develop our menus for Summer 2024.

Throughout the year the academy has themed menu days and this year we have planned themed menus for Diwali, Christmas, Chinese New Year and World Day for Cultural Diversity.

Our daily menus are nutritional and diverse, offering cuisine from around the world alongside a weekly traditional roast dinner and fish and chip Friday.

We have reduced our food offer at break time and offer smaller, healthier snacks that are fruit or oat based. This is for two reasons; we want students to opt into the free breakfast scheme and fill up before lessons start and we then want them to have access to a smaller, healthier snack at break but be hungry at lunch for a healthy, filling meal.

For more information on our catering provision and weekly menus, please click here.

Contact Us

The West Grantham Church of
England Secondary Academy
The Avenue
Grantham
Lincolnshire
NG31 7PX

T: 01476 405200

E: office@wgacademy.org.uk