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Posted on: 09/10/2020

Head of School Blog - Week 5

COVID Update

This week we received notification of one positive test in Year 10 which resulted in 12 students being notified to self-isolate for up to and including Friday 16th October.

The symptoms

Thank you for your continued support in ensuring that we keep our community safe and well. The most important thing for us as a school community is that you do not send your children to school if they or anybody in the household has symptoms. Those symptoms are high temperature (37.8 C), a new continuous cough and loss of taste or smell. A “new continuous cough” is defined HERE. Sore throats and a “runny nose” are not symptoms. I urge you again to keep updated with local and national guidance.

COVID19: A guide for parents

A parent guide has been produced to support you when or if your child displays COVID symptoms or comes into contact with the virus.  Please click HERE to read the guide.  You will also find this information on our website.  

Coats and PE kit for winter

As we have started to experience more inclement weather, please ensure that your son/daughter is wearing a suitable coat and gloves for their journey to and from school.  They should also now be wearing a plain black hoodie and jogging pants/leggings on PE days.  A small number of children have arrived wearing just their PE kits and have been extremely cold during the day. 

Reading Initiative

This week we launched our Year Group Reader initiative, ‘Access all Areas’ with Year 7 and Year 8. Through reading together as a class, and discussing the events and developments of the novel throughout the year, we hope that students will develop a love of reading as well as strengthen their skills as active readers. Both texts have been selected to complement the issues and themes explored across the entire curriculum. In Year 7, students will be reading Nowhere on Earth by Nick Lake, whilst Year 8 will be reading Patron Saints of Nothing by Randy Ribay: both are highly acclaimed, recently published texts and they have already caused a reading buzz amongst our staff, who are looking forward to talking about these books across the school!

Mobile Library

This half term the school librarian has been running a mobile library for Year 7 students at lunchtimes. After drawing some curious glances (is it a book sale?) the mobile library has been a huge hit with students and staff! When the weather allows (and it has been very kind until this week) the librarian sets up a selection of books on one of the picnic benches in the Year 7 yard. When the weather is inclement the mobile library moves indoors and students can be seen eyeing up the select feast of books on offer as they queue for lunch as well as while they eat.

Students have been delighted to be able to choose any book and talk about their reading likes and dislikes. It is wonderful to see the huge smiles when students spot books they have been itching to read. The Year 7 mobile library is attracting new faces every day and there are lots of smiles and waves for the librarian which shows just how much students are enjoying having books to read and talk about!

Year 7 Welcome Service and Settling In Event – Wednesday 14th October

One of our favourite events of the year is our Year 7 Welcome Service when we come together, as parents, carers, students and staff, to celebrate the children’s journey into secondary education and officially welcome them to our Hope community. 

Not being able to welcome families to the Academy is not going to stop us hosting this wonderful event!  I urge parents/carers to join us at 1.20pm via Microsoft Teams to celebrate the beginning of your child’s new journey.  The service is open to families of all faiths and none.

On the same evening, Wednesday 14th October, we would also like to invite Year 7 parents to attend a ‘Settling In Event’ with the Year 7 Pastoral Team and other senior members of Academy staff.  Again, this meeting will take place via Microsoft Teams at 6pm and the access link will be e-mailed to Year 7 parents.  We hope you are able to join us.

Year 11 Raising Achievement Sessions

Today, I met with our Head Boy and Head Girl, Sam and Tamara and shared the proposed Raising Achievement Sessions timetable. Their feedback was invaluable and together we have ensured that students have the opportunity to take part in as many sessions as possible.  Sessions will run before school and after school with virtual sessions also taking place in the evening.

We are looking forward to inviting Year 11 parents to attend our virtual Preparing to Perform event on Wednesday 11th November, starting at 6.00pm.  Parents/carers and students are invited to attend presentations providing vital information to help students to prepare for their GCSE examinations. This event is always very well attended and the feedback from both parents and students from previous years has been excellent.

There will be a welcome from the Head of School and Head of Year 11 as well as subject specific presentations from Heads of Faculty, providing hints and tips to help students prepare for their exams.  During the evening families will also have the opportunity to attend live Q&A sessions with senior subject teachers.

More information will follow in the coming weeks but in the meantime…..SAVE THE DATE!

Caterlink – Meal provision

This week we have introduced a full menu selection for our Year 9 and 11 students.  From Monday 12th October, Breakfast items will be available, from the outside catering hub, for Year 7 students only.  The following items will be available: Sausage Barm, Waffles, Toast and drinks. These will be available to purchase from 8.10am until 8.30am.

We are regularly reviewing the provision of hot meals and plan to extend this to other year groups in the not too distant future.  Can I please remind students who qualify for free school meals that the daily allocation is available at lunchtime and not for any breakfast or break service.  If your child does use the full daily amount, it is not carried over to the next day.

Year 5/6 Primary Roadshows and Virtual Open Event

Primary Roadshows have continued again this week.  Mr Robinson and I have hosted 2 further primary school Teams meetings for Year 5 and 6 children, with the final school being next week.  The meetings have been very successful.  The following Year 8 students also attended meetings with their previous primary schools to answer a wide range of questions: Will F and Angel H.

We are incredibly proud of each and every one of the students who supported these important meetings - they certainly were ‘Outstanding in all we do’. 

We are unable to host our normal open event this year but we have created a wonderful 3D Tour. Click HERE to access the tour.  Since adding the 3D tour to our website we had 1,165 visitors in just TWO weeks, with 475 hits in one day!

Further information about our Virtual Open Event can be found on our website. Click HERE.

Mr Shepherd

Due to personal reasons, Mr Shepherd has made the decision to step down as Vice Principal at Hope Academy. Although he has only been with us for a short time, we would like to thank him for the support he has provided the Academy throughout the challenging time of COVID and we wish him all the best for the future.

Kasia’s Reflection

In our world of 24-hour supermarkets it can be easy for us to take food for granted. We can forget the work that goes into planting the seeds, nurturing the ground, growing the plants, and harvesting the crops. This week in Inspire as we celebrated the Harvest, it was a great opportunity for us to recall and celebrate together the origins of these good gifts – to express our gratitude for the land and people who produce them, and to thank God from whom they all spring. Harvest time helps us appreciate the food we have, and also think about those who do not have enough to eat.

Since the pandemic, the use of food banks has risen by 89%. So many more people in our area are in need. The charity ‘Business for Youth’ in Newton-le-Willows delivered 33,805 packed lunches to our local area over 14 weeks since lockdown began in March, with at the peak over 600 lunches being delivered a day. That is why our Harvest Food Appeal this year is so necessary; so many more families need our help: ‘Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.’ (Philippians 2:4)

Let us use this time to help those around us by offering gifts of food and prayer. This week we launched our annual Harvest Appeal and until the 21st October we will be collecting food for St. Helens Foodbank.

Please consider making a donation to help those who do not have enough.


Thank you for our food and for your continuous care.

May your peace and love rest upon us. Help us to help those who do not have enough

By sharing with them the food we have so that no one goes hungry.



Take care and stay safe.

Mrs Adams

Please see below important diary dates from now until the end of December

Wednesday 14th October

Year 7 Virtual Welcome Event

Wednesday 14th October

Year 7 Settling In Parent Meeting @ 6.00pm

W/b 19th October

Year 7 CATS Tests/KS3 Progress (Lit & Num)

W/b 2nd November

Year 7 CATS Tests/KS3 Progress (Lit & Num)

Wednesday 11th November

Year 11 Virtual Preparing to Perform Event 1

Monday 30th November

Year 11 Mocks until 11th December



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