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Weekly bulletin 17/02/2023

Please see the latest weekly bulletin below:

Dear UCC Families

This week we had the pleasure of welcoming Spanish guests as part of our exchange programme with our partner school, IES Alba Longa, in Granada. This is the first trip we have been able to complete since the start of the pandemic and it gave our GCSE Spanish students a great opportunity to practice their speaking skills with the students and staff who visited. Foreign exchanges are very rare in schools these days, as they require a huge amount of organisation and coordination between the 2 schools and all the families involved. I am very grateful to everyone who contributed to a very successful exchange and gave both sets of students such a great experience. 

Our PE department took 45 students to the Netball Super League event in Nottingham last Saturday and it looked incredible. I have enjoyed speaking to the students and staff who went on this trip and witnessed elite standard netball in a fabulous venue. 

I managed to watch our Year 8/9 Rugby team compete superbly against Kibworth on Wednesday. The scoreline finished 20-20 and it was a brilliant game, with outstanding leadership and teamwork on display. Unfortunately, the competition rules state that the away team progress to the next round in the event of a draw, but all of our players involved can be proud of an excellent performance. 

The progress on our new teaching block for MFL, Business Studies and SEND classrooms is very positive. The project remains on track for completion at the end of April. Some time ago now, our student Eco Club asked me if we could install solar panels at the school, to help become a more environmentally friendly organisation and I am delighted that we have been able to incorporate these within the new building design. 

I'd like to wish all of the students and staff who are embarking on the senior ski trip to Austria, the very best of luck, as they leave later today. I hope everyone has a fabulous time. 

My final message is to update you on our plan for the industrial action due to take place in March. Talks between the NEU and the Secretary of State for Education did not end with a positive resolution earlier this week, therefore the planned strike days on March 1st, 15th and 16th will go ahead. Following our assessment of our staffing capacity, after the first strike day, we are planning to open the school to the following year groups on the following dates:

Wednesday March 1st: Years 7, 8, 10, 11 will be in school. Year 9 will be at home completing work on Satchel:One.

Wednesday 15th March: Years 7, 9, 10 and 11 will be in school. Year 8 will be at home completing work on Satchel:One.

Thursday 16th March: Years 8, 9, 10 and 11 will be in school. Year 7 will be at home completing work on Satchel:One.

We have prioritised Key Stage 4 students as they are the examination year groups, and then selected each Key Stage 3 year group to remain at home for one day each. Year 9 have been selected as the first cohort to remain at home, as the strike days on 15th and 16th March fall just before the Options forms are due in and we think Year 9 students will be wanting to speak to teachers frequently during these last few days about their GCSE choices. However, these plans are subject to change and will depend on the levels of staff absence we are experiencing. If there are to be any changes to these proposed plans I will let you know as soon as I can. 

Please take the time to read through the newsletter.

Take care,
Mr Solly.