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Weekly News – Friday 18th January

Message from the Headmistress

Dear Parents,

Mock exams are ongoing and Senior School is calm and purposeful.

This week we were delighted to welcome the Sheriff of Nottingham, Councillor Catherine Arnold, to the school for a look around. The Sheriff is a former pupil and she will be our Prize Giving speaker in October this year. It was fortuitous that we remade this connection. She spotted our junior pupils on the front row at the Goose Fair and made herself known to us. Subsequently, a group of pupils also met her at a Primary Parliament event at Nottingham Council House.

I was also pleased that Neil Roskilly, the CEO of the Independent School’s Association came to visit this week and he thought our school was just lovely! Indeed it is.

Year 8 boys and girls and Year 9 boys have been competing in football fixtures this week. They played brilliantly and whilst we are still developing some of our skills, we clearly have some exceptionally talented young players.

On Monday next week, we will be welcoming to Senior School our prospective pupils for September’s Year 7. We are doing something quite different this year, offering an immersive experience into a full day of small group teaching to give them a flavour of real life at Hollygirt and to demonstrate to us how the children fare across a range of academic and practical lessons, teambuilding exercises and interview. We will be testing our potential scholarship candidates with the rigour of formal testing on the Wednesday.

Following their mock exams, pupils in Year 11 will have a conference day on Tuesday. Conference Days are one of the mechanisms we use to teach all the elements of curriculum which don’t necessarily fit into the academic programme of study. They are an essential part our provision ensuring our children develop life skills and a deeper understanding of some of the issues they and society face.

On Wednesday, all the Year 10 and Year 11 will attend the ‘Poetry Live’ event supporting their English studies.

Friday is the first Friends of Hollygirt meeting of the term. The committee puts in sterling work to support the school in its social and fundraising activities. If you would like to lend a hand, please let us know. New committee members are more than welcome!

This week I have a job opportunity at Hollygirt to announce:

Pupil Development and EHCP Co-ordinator

Mrs O’Looney has decided to step down from her current role. She will remain in school as an English Teacher and will continue to do the assessments for access arrangements for GCSEs.

Full details of the post, the skills and experience required and a person specification are now on our website. This is quite a unique role and we are flexible in some of the professional skills desired to complement our existing staff. Please share it with anyone you know who might be interested in this part time, term time only role.

Next week, on what is publicised as being the most depressive week of the year, Hollygirt is going all out on its mission to SPARKLE. Children throughout the school are being asked to partake in random acts of kindness and to log them. The aim of this is to raise awareness of mental health and well-being with pupils. Helping others can be beneficial to all of our mental health by reducing stress, helping others to feel good about themselves and helping to reduce negative feelings and anxiety. Pupils are allowed to wear a sparkly or bright coloured accessory to school each day of the week.

Finally, a quick reminder about bad weather: should we have any extreme weather this term, we will post on the website, social media and through a notification on the Hollygirt app, first thing in the morning if school is closed. This is an extremely rare occurrence (once in last 12 years). The only circumstance in which we would call closure would be if we were unable to get caretakers and staff on site to ensure the buildings are unlocked and warm and your children can be safe.

Have a fabulous weekend.

Mrs Hutley

Message from the Head of Juniors

Click here to view this week’s Stars of the Week

Dear Parents.

On Tuesday, our Year 3 and 4 boys’ football team played against St Augustine’s. It was a tough opening third but our boys played really well and we are very proud of them. They were sporting the new Hollygirt football kit, kindly bought by the Friends of Hollygirt, a big thank you to them for supporting us.

On Wednesday, Mr Goodhead took a junior and senior team to the Nottingham City Inter-School Cross Country at Wollaton. Lola in Year 4, who ran in the Year 5 and 6 Girls category, finished an amazing 12th out of 140 and qualified for the Nottinghamshire Schools Cross Country competition. In the Year 5 / 6 Boys category, Mordecai came 15th and Cassian, 36th, out of 165. In the Year 7 Girls category, Amara finished 24th and Angele, 29th, out of 65. Excellent efforts by all!

A reminder that next week is ‘Sparkle Week’ when we will be raising awareness of mental health and wellbeing with children demonstrating acts of kindness. Children can wear a sparkly or brightly coloured accessory to school each day.

Year 6 will be spending the day in Senior School on Monday for the Year 7 Entrance Day. They will have the opportunity to take part in different lessons whilst getting to know other children who may join them in Year 7. I am sure they will have an enjoyable day.

On Tuesday next week, Miss Cooper and Mr Ockleford are taking a team for a Dodgeball tournament.  We are looking to develop competitive sporting opportunities for all and involve everyone who is keen to participate. If your child is not selected for a particular event, there will be many other chances at other times.

There are a few bugs around at the moment. If you child has had a stomach bug, a reminder that children should stay off school for 48 hours after the last episode, following NHS advice that you are most infectious from when symptoms start until two days after they have passed.

Have a lovely weekend.

Mrs Wright
Head of Juniors

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"Pupils are self-confident, self-aware and have a good sense of who they are."

ISI Inspection February 2013