Dear Parents & Carers
As the Academic Year draws to a close, it is important to reflect upon the events of the previous term. It has certainly been a busy one, and it would be impossible to list all of the events and achievements that our students have been involved in here. However, some events are particularly worth mentioning.
After two years of hard work our current year 13 students have departed from Workington Academy. An emotional farewell assembly was held bringing the group together before beginning their study leave, with many choosing to move on in September to university courses at a range of universities all over the UK. To all those who plan to go to university; to take up an apprenticeship or are entering into the world of work, we wish them the very best of luck for the future and encourage all our leavers to sign up to our alumni group through the Future First website.
Also this half term, we have welcomed a new cohort of year 12 students into the sixth form. Students had the opportunity to experience lessons in all their chosen subjects and thoroughly enjoyed their time in school. We look forward to seeing all students on results day to confirm their place in the sixth form.
Some of our current year 12 students visited Lancaster University this term. Students had the chance to use mathematical concepts and to understand how Mathematics is used technically within industry to solve problems and aid innovative design. Guidance on application to university was also offered to help students to prepare applications to study Mathematics and related subjects at some of the most prestigious universities in the UK.
During the first week of July sixth form students enjoyed a Science trip to Geneva, Switzerland. Whilst in Geneva the students embraced European city culture and visited the UN Palais des Nations where the Human Rights Council were meeting, the Red Cross Museum and enjoyed some leisure time swimming in the lake and enjoying Swiss cuisine. On the final day of the visit they went to the largest particle accelerator in the world at CERN. They then met and questioned some of the scientists who were in the team to discover it. CERN was set up at the end of the second world war to pool resources in scientific research, educate and unite people from all over the world. The students learnt about the history and mission of CERN, also seeing the first particle accelerator to be used on the site, the Synchrocyclotron.
Year 12 students have also had the opportunity to undertake a first aid course under the guidance of the Fire Service. The fire crew delivered hands-on training on CPR using resuscitation dolls. All students will be awarded a certificate for taking part which will be available at the awards evening in the next academic year. In addition to this, some Year 12 students have also completed a Level 3 paediatric or workplace First Aid Qualification.
A number of year 12 students have been selected to participate in the Sutton Trust summer schools with a variety of universities. Students made applications to the national scheme and were selected for experiences at Durham, Glasgow and Nottingham. All year 12 students have also completed a week of work experience, where they embarked upon a range of placements with a range of employers, some even travelling out of county. Students spoke highly of their experiences and the skills that they have developed, ready for making decisions on their path after sixth form.
To help all of our students think about the world of work, we hosted a Futures Evening which a range of employers and further education and apprenticeship providers attended. The evening offered students, parents and carers, opportunities to interact and ask questions in relation to student aspirations and their next steps needed to achieve these. A big thank you to all that attended and the positive feedback given regarding the event.
Year 11 were an absolute credit to themselves during the exam season, showing true resilience and responsibility in relation to their conduct and behaviour. Their positive attitude to learning and attendance at revision sessions was highly commendable and we all look forward to receiving the results of the GCSE exams in August. Year 11 also had much to celebrate at their awards evening where Alex Nicholson and Ebony Ritchie were recognised as our Outstanding Year 11 students for 2019. They were not the only winners that evening as over 450 certificates were awarded for a vast range of commendable achievements. The celebrations continued on our Leaver’s day where a rainbow of colourful hoodies was on display, only eclipsed by the dazzling display of gorgeous gowns and snazzy suits at the Prom. The Prom was held at Whitehaven Golf Club and was a great night for everyone who attended.
Year 10 have been equally busy as they reach the half-way point of their GCSE studies. They have been hard at work completing coursework in targeted intensive sessions so that they are able to focus more time on exam preparation in Year 11. They have been preparing themselves for the next stage of their lives participating in a ‘World of Work’ day that saw our young people engaging in a speed-networking session with future employers, workshops about aspects of employment and guidance from INSPIRA and Hello Futures. This careers focussed work has also helped to prepare them for their work experience this week and we look forward to hearing great things from their work placements about their engagement and progress in the “real world” of work.
Year 10 have also been celebrating their achievements this academic year at the awards evening that was held for them last week. Certificates and prizes were awarded for both academic and personal achievements. Aimee Niemand and Ace Wedgwood were recognised as the Outstanding students of Year 10 2019 for their commitment to study and extra-curricular activities.
Students in years 8 and 9 have been involved in a number of workshops exploring mental health. These were warmly received by our students and helped them understand challenges that they may need to overcome in the future.
The year 9 students have now finalised their subject choices for their Key stage 4 studies and are very excited to be starting their GCSE courses in September. A selection of year 9 students have also completed a successful upcycle project. This was a practical course that lasted 6 weeks and students deigned and upcycled pieces of old furniture. The students experienced many practical skills and communication skills in a workplace environment. The staff at the centre were very complementary of our students in terms of their work ethic, punctuality and resilience. The Year 9 Young Sport Leaders have also been fantastic ambassadors for The Academy. This term they have officiated the Annual Primary Football Festival and assisted in the delivery of a Primary School Cricket Festival. The Primary Schools and Cricket Club were very appreciative of the professionalism shown by the students.
The year 8 students have also had a positive term. It has been lovely to see the amount of progress made in all areas of the curriculum and the responsibility that students have shown in relation to their own learning. The academy has been working closely with our primary schools, getting ready to receive our new year 7 students in September and it has made us extremely proud to see so many year 8 students take on the role of student ambassador, offering advice and guidance to the new students. There have been some notable sporting achievements too. The year 8 boys Football team were runners up in the Allerdale Cup and the Rugby League team made it to the County Cup Semi Finals. The Girls team was crowned Rugby League, County Champions with an excellent display from all involved.
Over the Summer term our year 7 students have continued to make big strides in their academic progress, cementing their knowledge developed in year 7 and readying themselves for their transition into year 8. They have continued to excel both in and out of the classroom, with students working hard to complete the challenges of their ‘Passport to Success’, continuing to engage in a high number of extra-curricular clubs and contributing to life across the academy. A number of year 7 students attended a trip to Clip and Climb on Tuesday 25 June, as a reward for their commitment to extra-curricular sports clubs throughout the year.
Year 7 has culminated in our annual End of Year Camping and Outdoor Activities trip, with our students descending upon the picturesque village of Eskdale, where they camped for two nights and took part in a range of outdoor activities over three days including; climbing and abseiling, canoeing, bush craft, archery, orienteering and some open water swimming. Our students had a fantastic experience on this trip, overcoming challenges, working with others, making new friends, enjoying an authentic camp fire and toasted marshmallows each night and most of all – making memories to last a life time and to take forward into the rest of their school career!
Even before our students start with us, they have had lots of tastes of academy life with over 300 Year 5 students from our feeder primary schools joining us for our “Shakespeare Day” on Wednesday 26 June, which was hosted by our English department. Students in year 5 have also recently visited us to take part in Art, Design and Technology and PE taster sessions, as well as year 5 students from our feeder primary schools continuing to attend our enrichment sessions for Maths and English.
We have also thoroughly enjoyed supporting our local community and specifically Flimby Primary School in their efforts at improving the décor at Flimby Train Station. Our Art staff and students have visited Flimby Primary school and supported the creation of mural designs to decorate the wall along the train station, working in conjunction with Network Rail and the Colourful North – watch out for our creations if you are passing through Flimby on the train over the summer!
Workington Academy have also recently celebrated their first ever ‘Word Quadruple Word Millionaires’. Dylan Walsh (year 7) and Connor Johnston (year 8), have now read over four million words each within the Accelerated Reader programme – a phenomenal achievement. Both Dylan and Connor are now currently battling it out to see who can finish top of the leader board with the most words read by the end of term – Good luck boys. A high number of students in year 7, 8 and 9 have continued to represent Workington Academy in a range of Allerdale and Cumbria competitions this term, including athletics, rounders and rugby league and all students in years 7, 8 and 9 took part in our Workington Academy Olympics on Friday 12 July.
As well as lots of other charity events and fundraising events that have taken place throughout the year, we saw a team of staff and students taking part in the 5K Race for Life at Bitts Park, Carlisle on Sunday 14 July, to raise money for Cancer Research. So far they have raised over £1300!
We are keen to stay in touch with former students of the Academy, Southfield and Stainburn through our Alumni group. To do this please visit the Future First website and enrol. We look forward to being able to bring in former students to help inspire all our young people into exciting and fulfilling careers in the future. If you would like to be involved with our careers programme but are not a former student please contact Mrs Andrea McAllister, Careers Leader, at the Academy to find out more.
Enclosed with this letter is some important information about the Academy uniform. Thank you for your continued support in ensuring that the Academy uniform policy is adhered to.
Finally, I would like to wish our whole Academy community a happy and restful summer break. The Academy reopens to students on Wednesday 4 September.
Mr D Bird