During my drive into school every day, I reflect on lots of things that are taking place in my life whilst listening to the radio. During this time of year, one of the constant reminders that Christmas is coming are the Christmas songs that are played throughout December, which are a modern reminder that Christ's birthday will soon be here.
It is the most special time of our school calendar as we enjoy celebrating with each other, whilst being reminded through our daily Advent prayers of the importance for this celebration. This morning's Advent prayer was about holding hands and it was very poignant, as we have experienced social distancing for what seems to be the longest time now.
"Think about all the different reasons you might hold someone's hand. When crossing a busy street, parents will hold a child's hand to make sure they are safe. When in a large crowd, we hold hands to make sure we don't get separated from one another and people who love each other often hold hands, 'just because'. God holds our hand for those same reasons; for safety, to keep us close and just out of love"
School life is always very busy and seems hectic, sometimes I think we all need to take a pause and reflect on what is fundamentally important to us, prayer is my way of taking that pause – even if it is only for a couple of minutes.
It was my privilege to congratulate the Y11 boys' football team, who won the Wigan Schools knockout cup at Ashton Athletic last Thursday – a fantastic achievement and one that we are rightly extremely proud of. For me, it wasn’t about winning the cup, it was the fantastic way in which the boys represented themselves, the school and their families in their attitudes, behaviour and conduct – they were exceptional.
As we approach the end of what has been an extremely busy term (even without an Ofsted visit it would have been especially busy!), it is business as usual up to the final day of term.
Our Y11 and Y10 students have been very focused recently as they have just sat their mock exams. I would like to say a huge 'WELL DONE' as it has been an intense period of time for them, but they were all amazing.
The Y10 and Y11 students also recently took part in a Careers Fair so that they could start to have discussions about their future plans with external providers. I would like to thank our Careers Advisor, Jane Clark along with Mrs Paul for arranging this event and also those parents/carers who came into school so that they could join in with these discussions, it was a really productive day.
Our Y11 students have also taken part in a mock interview day event, where they were interviewed with a representative from a choice of over 35 organisations. The students had to complete a CV in advance as though they were applying for college, or an apprenticeship or a job, which was their first experience of this type of activity. The students were commended afterwards for their interview skills, also for the way they behaved, their manners and maturity within an interview setting were fantastic.
The focus for our Y11 pupils is moving to a point in time when their teachers and our school community will no longer be able to hold their hands, instead we will continue to support and encourage them as much as we possibly can, but ultimately it will be up to them to live up to their potential.
I am delighted to say that our school choir has taken part in the annual Cafod Christmas Carol Concert, but yet again this year it has been filmed for a virtual audience and it will be made available via the school's website shortly. Our Christmas Carol Service will take place on 20 December 2021 at St Oswalds' Church and information about this event will be sent out to parents shortly.
Christmas Jumper Day (Sweater's for Soweto) will take place on Friday 17 December 2021. For our Year 7 students, this is a day when we ask you to help us to raise funds for our partner school in Soweto, by donating a £1 for wearing a jumper to school – the staff join in too!
I will update my blog before we finish on Tuesday 21 December 2021 at 2.00pm, but in the meantime, please make arrangements for the early finish on this date.