Easter sessions a success, radio stars and top mathematicians

We returned back to the Academy after what was a restful break as we prepare for the final push towards GCSE and A level success for our Year 11 and 13 students. Mrs Brenchley (Vice Principal and Raising Standards Lead) reported that over 75% of our current Year 11 cohort attended revision sessions over the Easter break. This figure is a testament to the commitment of both the students and the staff. I have received many positive comments from both groups about how useful the additional sessions were and how much progress has been made. In addition to this work Mr Iqbal (Progress Leader for Year 12) has been leading a team of sixteen mentors who have been working with targeted Year 11 students to help them with their studies. The staff involved come from the full spectrum of staff with the majority being support staff. The impact has so far been significant and I had the pleasure today (21/4/17) of presenting certificates and gift vouchers to the top 10 most improved students. All had increased by one full GCSE grade overall and they should be proud of the work that they have done to make this significant progress.

John Devine from BBC Radio Cambridgeshire interviewed two of our students on the topic of lowering the voting age in the UK to 16 or 17. Maddy Pooley and Morgan Chappell both gave very compelling accounts as to why the voting age should be lowered. Listening to them both was a real pleasure and I was incredibly proud to hear such measured and insightful answers to the question posed. The interview was broadcasted at 12.00 today (21/4/17) and is available on the BBC Radio Cambridgeshire iPlayer.

Four of our Year 10 students took part in the regional final of the UK Mathematics Challenge at the end of the Spring Term and they performed magnificently. Daniel Bradshaw, Alfie Curson, Mark Jenner and Archie Patterson were the team members and all competed with distinction. The event was held at The Kings School, Peterborough on 23 March. The team finished seventh out of twenty-two which is our best ever finish. The team defeated a number of independent and selective schools such as The Peterborough School and Bourne Grammar. The boys were a credit to the Academy and I received the following comments from a member of staff from another school that was taking part;

“I attended the UKMT regional final of the Mathematics Challenge today hosted at Kings Peterborough with my team from Bourne Grammar School. In this event teachers are placed with other schools to administer and mark the four rounds of the competition. I was placed with the team from Neale-Wade Academy and spent the day with them.

I felt I should write and say what a credit, Mark, Dan, Archie and Alfie were to your school. All of them absolutely splendid fellows, bright and eager to do well. They were extremely polite and they worked exceptionally well as team, especially on the cross-number round. Their enthusiasm did not wane throughout the day. Their seventh place out of a strong field of twenty-two was thoroughly deserved”

Mr Woollard was the tea manager for the event and he has done an excellent job in preparing the team for the rigours of the competition. He made the following comments;

“The boys took part in four rounds of competition where the pupils have to demonstrate teamwork and problem solving, as well as sound mathematical knowledge. Overall it was a fantastic achievement for the pupils involved and the academy. We are now a force to be reckoned with in the local maths competitions”

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