Headteacher’s Update – December 2016

As we approach the climax of the festive season it is worth reflecting on some of the key activities of this term. These include a range of events in school, a series of extra-curricular visits, the opening of our new Dining Hall and most recently the conclusion of our consultation on our proposed move to academy status.

Photographs of our new Dining Hall have been posted on the school website and this new facility has truly transformed both lunchtimes and breaks in the school. We can now seat almost 500 students in our new facility compared to just over 240 in the previous space. This new facility is proving very popular with our students and is now looking very festive due to its current decorations. It was used to great effect last week when over 300 Christmas dinners were served each of the days these were included on the menus.

Fulford once again took part in the annual CPR training via the Restart a Heart day organised by the British Heart Foundation. All Year 7 students were trained in four sessions by staff from the North Yorkshire Ambulance Service. Fundraising linked to the day raised enough funds for Fulford to buy the fourth defibrillator for the school site to provide quick access at the far end of site, and the school playing fields. In addition to this, over £300 was donated to the British Heart Foundation from fundraising on the day.

Our school community has again shown its hard work and generosity in our charity support work this term. Over £1600 was raised for Children in Need through the Great Fulford Bake Off where staff donned their aprons to bake a variety of dishes. We have also raised over £300 for Cancer Research via the Sixth Form Pink Friday. Special mention must also go to Annie Aldous and Charlie Rice who have been nominated for awards as Community Fundraising Heroes for their participation in the Great North Swim to support the Cancer Care Centre at York District Hospital. Both Anna and Charlie are featuring in York Hospital Trust’s drive to encourage more people to become in involved in raising funds to support their work and that of other groups in the community.

The culmination of our charity work can be seen to great effect in our significant contribution to the recent LIfebag lifebagAppeal for Syrian Refugees which was launched across the school by our Young Leaders. This appeal saw the completion of 175 bags containing gifts and essential items such as waterproof jackets, torches, hats and gloves. I would like to thank all those in our school community who have supported these excellent causes and for their efforts to provide support for those in need.

In an item where we have received rather than given, the Science department would like to express their thanks to Smith and Nephew at the York Science Park for their generous donation of a large amount of used Science equipment.  This equipment included glassware together with more specialist equipment such as two desiccating chambers, a heating mantle and a hotplate stirrer.  These goods are worth a significant sum of money and they will benefit our students directly while enabling the department to retain money to spend on purchasing additional items that they would otherwise have had to go without.

Congratulations go to Josh Fernandes for his victory in the York heat of the Great Debate. Josh competed against students from Bootham, The Mount and Ripon Grammar where he debated the impact of the First World War on the community.  He will now compete in the National Competition in London at the Imperial War Museum in March next year.

Our recent success in the Senior Maths Challenge means we will be sending a team of Sixth Form students down to London to another National Final. In a similar vein, our team of Year 8 girls will compete at the National Final of the Big Bang Engineering Competition in Birmingham in the new year. I know you will all join me in wishing our students every success in these competitions.

Thanks must go to Ms Bowen and to all the staff and students who are helping the school host the Anne Frank Exhibition between 5-16th December. All students in the school will have the opportunity to be guided round this highly powerful exhibition by our trained student guides. We will also be opening up the exhibition to several of our partner primaries. The message of this exhibition is one that stands the test of time and that is particularly important today given the changing national and international climate.

The recent York Cultural Awards saw Fulford students and staff gain the Best Education Project Award for our img_1474year long work on a transitional music and dance piece created in partnership with the Balbir Singh Dance Company from Leeds. This project culminated in the students involved performing their devised piece across a range of our partner primary schools. We are delighted to have been awarded funding to enable us to continue the work of this project into a second year.

Our Fulford School Christmas card this year, which I have attached, shows the winning Christmas Tree design in the competition, run by Persimmon, to design a Fulford School Christmas tree for St Oswald’s Church to feature in their Christmas Tree festival. This cleverly designed and beautifully decorated tree uses mostly recycled materials to make the decorations.

On behalf of all those in the school, I wish you and your family a fabulous Christmas break and good health and every happiness for the New Year ahead.christmas-card

Lorna Savage