2014 December Newsletter - Saint John Fisher Catholic College

Saint John Fisher Catholic College
with humanities specialist status
Newsletter - Issue 26
December 2014
We wish everyone a Blessed
and Peaceful Christmas and
pray that families may enjoy
time together to relax and
restore their spirits.
Ms F Hegarty
Gordon Banks (former Stoke City and England
goalkeeper) visited SJF on 11th December to speak
in the Y9 & 10 assembly. He spoke about the
importance of being successful in life, and the role
that reading plays in engaging young people in
There were lots of photo and autograph
opportunities for students and staff with Gordon
This visit launched the new e-reading service that
will be available to all pupils in the New Year.
Headteacher: Ms F Hegarty B.Ed
Page 2 of 15
Rebecca Daniels, Y13 student at St John Fisher Catholic College, has recently been named as a coauthor in a research paper. The paper, entitled ‘The use of magnetic susceptibility as a forensic
search tool’, has been published in a peer reviewed journal (Forensic Science International) and will
be published in additional scientific journals in the future. The paper focuses on research into
forensic science and will contribute towards further advances in this area. For Rebecca to be a
published research scientist aged just 17 sets her up for great success throughout her future
studies and career. Publication in such an esteemed, international journal is very uncommon prior to
post-graduate studies. This opportunity was made possible through Rebecca’s time spent on a
Nuffield Research Placement, which she participated in to enhance her university application and
to give her experience of working as a research scientist. All at St John Fisher and Trinity Sixth
Form are very proud of Rebecca’s achievements.’
Mr J Niewiadomski
Visit of former student Rachael Kelly
Rachael Kelly visited the school on Monday
6th October 2014. She spoke in the Key Stage 3
assembly about the importance of hard work and
commitment, speaking about her experiences in
her swimming career, including her recent
involvement in the Commonwealth Games in
Glasgow. She also showed the students her many
medals, including her European Junior Champion
and World Junior Champion medals. Rachael
happily signed autographs and posed for
photographs with students (and some staff!).
She visited many of the other classes during
the morning, speaking to lots of students about
their sporting endeavours and encouraging
them in their development within their sport.
We thank Rachael for her inspiring visit, wish
her the best of luck for her upcoming training
and look forward to welcoming her to our school
again in the future.
Page 3 of 15
Visit of Neil “Nello” Baldwin
Neil Baldwin was the guest of honour at the ‘Be Your Best’ assembly on Thursday 23rd October
2014. As well as presenting the Be Your Best award to two of our marvellous Year 11 students, he
spoke to Year 10 and 11 about the importance of striving to be your best in all that you do for the
service of others, as well as speaking about the importance of having faith in God to support you in
your life journey. Neil’s glimpse into his life inspired many of our students and staff, and Neil was
very happy to sign autographs and take ‘selfies’ with both students and staff. This uplifting
morning ended with refreshments for Neil and other members of our school community, including
some parents and grandparents. Neil has been told that he is more than welcome to visit our school
again, and he has already taken us up on this for next year. We wish Neil all the best for the busy
months ahead, with an appearance on Sports Personality of the Year as well as various functions
including freedom of the City of Stoke on Trent upcoming.
Page 4 of 15
Boots and Shirts for Malawi School
Mr Kasiya, one of our IT technicians, asked our
students for football boots and shirts that they no
longer used so that he could send them onto his
old school football team, Kachamba FC. Our
student response was overwhelming, with 145
pairs of boots and 32 football shirts handed in. All
of these were packed into a container heading for
Malawi and are on their way to Kachamba FC.
Many thanks to all students and staff for their
generous donations. We look forward to
receiving photos of some students using these
donated shirts and boots (although they may not
wish to be photographed in a Stoke City shirt!).
Mr Murray
Chaplaincy section
The Youth Chaplaincy team is now up and running and has so far proved
to be a huge success. The YCT are a group of students who work
closely with me to promote and develop the Catholic life of the school,
which is at the centre of all we do.
All the pupils involved have been presented with their YCT badges, by
the head teacher during an assembly.
This is a wonderful opportunity for the pupils and they have so far decided that they will open up
the Chapel to pupils during lunch time on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The pupils take it in
turns to be present in the Chapel to make sure everyone is ok. They have also been working on
activities for people to do whilst the Chapel is open, including a prayer paper chain and making sure
They are currently working on posters and
displays to go up around school.
Christian unity visits
Christian unity week takes place every year in
January. In 2015, the dates are Saturday 18th –
Saturday 25th January.
Here at SJF, we host a Christian unity liturgy,
which, next year, takes place on Thursday 22nd
January at 3:45pm.
As part of the preparation for this, I, along with some pupils form the SVP groups and the YCT
have been visiting local Catholic and non-Catholic primary schools to work with them. We deliver a
session about Christian unity and pupils from both schools work together to produce a collage of
the school badge, and to write some prayers based on Christian unity to be read out or displayed at
the liturgy.
Page 5 of 15
The school now has two youth SVP groups, one in Y12 and the other in Y13.
The pupils go out on visits to Rowan court the local care home, St. Mary’s primary school, Coloock
retreat centre at Stubbs gate and Holy Trinity Catholic Church.
We also work closely with the adult SVP group at Holy Trinity, whose members, as well as the
sisters at Coolock come in and join us for Masses and liturgies during the year.
Pupils in Y12 are currently working on an assembly to deliver to Y8 about body image, self-esteem
and having a positive view of ourselves.
I am also currently in discussions with the relevant people about
setting up a placement for the pupils with Chesterton Salvation
Army as many of them have expressed an interest in doing some
work with the homeless and disadvantaged of our community.
CAFOD Climate change Flexible learning day session
As part of our last Flexible learning day, the pupils had a session based on Climate Change. Some of
these sessions were led by Mr P Mayland, the CAFOD representative for this area.
A short write-up from one of Y12 students has been published on the CAFOD, Birmingham blog.
Below is the piece that Millie wrote, as well as the link to the CAFOD blog, where you will also see a
picture of Mr Mayland and some pupils next to the display that was put up by the SVP groups:
“Recently in school we had a flexible learning day, and there was a session about CAFOD’s climate
change campaign. Some of these sessions were run by Mr P Mayland, the North Staffs area
representative for CAFOD.
I enjoyed this session about CAFOD and the
environment because it was interesting, and
made me think how much electricity we
waste and how much my life could be
negatively affected if the climate continued
to change in the way it is now.
Also, I didn’t realise that CAFOD
campaigned about the environment; I
thought they focused on ending world
hunger, poverty and thirst.
I learnt that CAFOD’s climate change
campaign is about sharing the world’s
resources equally; it is about fairness and
Matt Allcock, Lucy Jones and Hermon Petros Y12 with Mr P Mayland.
Page 6 of 15
Lourdes fundraising
Every year Saint John Fisher Catholic College take a group of young people to Lourdes as part of
the annual Birmingham Diocesan pilgrimage. The 2015 pilgrimage will see the 8th group from our school
taking part in the pilgrimage and the diocese also celebrate their 75th year in Lourdes. Whilst they are there
the pupils work with and support the sick and elderly pilgrims; offering them companionship, friendship and a
helping hand in getting around Lourdes.
They work with the doctors and nurses to ensure the comfort of the sick and elderly pilgrims during Masses
and services, by providing blankets and water where necessary. The pupils will also spend time in the hospital
with the other pilgrims listening and talking to them, and it is these duties that are so simple that make a
huge difference to the pilgrims.
Every pupil that has been to Lourdes has talked about how the experience has changed them, by making them
realise how lucky they are or giving them a huge sense of responsibility, and how the atmosphere in Lourdes
made them feel very humble.
In order to be able to send these pupils to Lourdes a lot of fundraising has to be done: the pupils will attend
parishes in the locality and give talks to the parishioners about Lourdes and why they want to go.
We also arrange bag packs at local supermarkets which the young people attend, as well as holding events in
Harvest festival
As you may know, the school supported the Salvation Army at
Harvest time in October. Each form in school donated a hamper
that the pupils had put together. These hampers went to people
who are living in difficult circumstances in the local area.
worked very hard,
and donated a huge
Salvation Army –
there was so much
Christine Chadwick had to make two trips in her car to get all
the food to the local Salvation Army office.
As part of the
Harvest Mass attended by Y7 & 10, Christine spoke to the pupils
about where the food would go and the people that it would help.
Many of the pupils found this very useful, and said that previous
to Christine coming in to talk to them, they didn’t realise that
people in the local area can live in difficult circumstances, where
they have to choose between feeding themselves and feeding
their children.
Morrisons also kindly donated £30 worth of vouchers to our
Mrs T Shannon - Lay Chaplain
Page 7 of 15
On the 18th November 2014, 90 Y8 students travelled up to Manchester to learn about
Students visited two sites - Salford Quays and the Etihad Stadium.
Salford Quays is an area of Manchester that has seen many changes; and the students learnt
about its history as a working docks and were able to see first-hand the transformation of this
once neglected area with apartments overlooking the quaysides and modern buildings that are home
to some of the UK’s most recognised shops and companies, including the BBC and ITV studios.
The Etihad Stadium continues to regenerate
the Eastlands area of Manchester. The
Geography department has taken Y8 classes
from SJFCC to the Etihad Stadium over the
last six years and the changes have been
amazing. The stadium itself has become more
glamorous and sophisticated in its technology,
but it is also the positive impact on the local
area and the local community which is striking.
A new Academy is currently under
development to help raise the education
standards in the area and there are numerous
links with the local community to get people
involved with sport.
The information gathered on the trip will
be used back in the classroom to help
understanding of how sport can be used
positively to regenerate parts of our
neglected urban areas.
Page 8 of 15
I Love Music
I’m Jack Marshall and I have just started Y9.
My favourite subject is music! I have just started doing GCSE music as one of my options along
with French and German. I think it is amazing!
I have started to learn braille music. It can be very confusing. I am OK with brailling but it’s the
reading that gets me confused because you are adding dot sixes and dot threes when you are
doing different signs. Also the letters are different. Here’s how it goes when it goes up in a
scale. C is B, B is E, E is F, F is G, G is H, A is I, B is J and then it just goes back to C again. I
also use a special software called Sibelius. It is music software where you can compose music.
It is amazing! I am getting a hang of the keyboard short cuts. A document on Sibelius is not
called a document; it is called a score. My support helpers help me get onto a new score. To get
into the instrument menu, you press the key I. To get into the time signature menu, you press
the key T. There is a vast array of instruments in the
instrument menu. It is a music paradise!
When I am ready to compose my piece, my support
worker helps me to start on the note I want and then
I am ready to begin composing! To get on to a
different thing I press the keys on the number pad.
For example, if I want a crotchet, I press the number
five on the number pad. If I wanted a triplet, which is
when you can make room for a third note in two
beats, I use the short cut control 3. When I have
completed the process of making my composition, I
press the key P to play back what I have done. If
there is something that I am not happy with, my
support worker deletes a bar or more for me and
helps me get back onto the note I want to start on.
When I am happy with it I save it and print it using
the normal short cuts you use on a screen reader.
I hope you have enjoyed my article about GCSE
Music. You never know, you might be interested in
doing it for one of your Options!
Jack Marshall 9N
Page 9 of 15
Maths Department
Senior Maths Challenge Results
Congratulations to the following Y12 & 13 students. The
senior maths challenge is the hardest of the challenges and to achieve a certificate is a fantastic
Y13 – GOLD- Jak Andrukowicz-Kearns
SILVER – Roman Huczok, Arvind Chandok, Victoria Johnson
BRONZE – Oliver Gardner, Jack Avramovic, Nyall Goodwin, Katie Fradley, Aiden
Ellerton, Daniel Dean
Y12 - SILVER – Joy Arlene, Elizabeth O’Leary, Joyal Davis, James Richardson, Michael
Changes to GCSE and KS3 curriculum
The present Y10 & 11 will take a terminal GCSE examination and still be awarded A*-G grades.
The present Y9 will be on the new number system from 1 to 9 with 9 being the top and 4 being a C
Y7 & 8 are now following the new national curriculum that can be found on government websites.
Help and Support
Remember that www.mymaths.co.uk can be used at home to help and support in lots of ways and
it’s not just for homework tasks. We also use the schools VLE moodle for some homework tasks
where you will find PDF files of books. The BBC website www.bbc.co.uk/schools/bitesize also has
many things to help for all ages.
Mr D Bailey
RE: Shisha pens/Electronic cigarettes.
The school has become involved in several incidents where learners have been buying and
using electronic cigarettes/shisha pens. If we are made aware that a learner has one of these in
their possession then we will confiscate them and inform parents/carers.
When we have contacted home parents have been unaware that their child has been in
possession of the pens. Please discuss this with your child and stress how serious the health
issues are and the consequence should your child have involvement with such activities.
It is recommended that under 18s should not use them and they are not permitted within
Page 10 of 15
On Wednesday 3rd December we welcomed the
fabulous ‘Onatti Theatre Productions’ into school
to perform their current KS3/4 play ‘Erreur
d’identité’ (Mistaken identity). The company are no
strangers to SJFCC and this is the 4th year we
have been fortunate enough to view their work.
The play is set in the struggling ‘Hôtel du Marais’,
which hasn’t seen a single client in two weeks.
The owners Pierre and Rose-Marie are over the
moon when a guest finally arrives. Their
enthusiasm soon wanes when they discover that a
prisoner has escaped from the local jail and he
seems to resemble their new guest! Cue lots of
panic and slap-stick comedy!
French students from years 8, 9, 10, 11 and 6th
form were captivated for a full 50 minutes, by the
two French-speaking actors who performed this
lively and hilarious piece.
Audience participation was a must and two Y11
boys Daniel Gibbs and Ben Durham didn’t
All in all, a fabulous morning’s entertainment and
we look forward to welcoming the theatre group
back in March with their KS3/4 German play.
Mrs A Higgins
Sky Sports for Living Programme
Mrs Rundle and the Mentoring Team would like to
congratulate all of the Y10 & 11 students involved in the Sky
Sports for Living Programme. They have all shown fantastic
development of their leadership skills, over the last half
term. They are continuing to visit our Primary feeder
schools in order to help support the students in their PE
lessons with Mr Stevenson. All of these students have
represented Saint John Fisher in an amazing way. Well
done to:
Matthew Box
Jade Spencer
Megan Letton
Rob Rowley
Anisa Afsar
Zidane Zaccariah
Joseph Urie
Chloe Hilditch
Ryan Smith
Calla Beeston
Henry Burton
Thomas Urie
Page 11 of 15
The Learning Express Dept
We would like to say a big thank you to all the pupils who have been working hard and
have completed work to a very high standard in the Y7 English and Maths Booster
The English group has focused on reading and punctuation skills.
The Maths groups have targeted number work skills.
The booster groups will continue throughout this academic year and we
look forward to lots of successful learning in 2015!
Merry Christmas from Mrs D McGee and Mrs J Tinsley
Before School Club
Every morning
8:00am - 8:50am
After School
Art and Craft Club
Wednesday 3:15pm – 4:00pm
(Parental slips are available from Mrs Williams or Mrs Boon)
Coffee Mornings
Our Coffee Mornings are extremely well attended by parents of pupils who need some extra
support. Parents of Y5 and 6 pupils from feeder Catholic Primary School are also invited and this
supports the transition of pupils into St John Fisher Catholic College. SENCo’s from our feeder
Catholic Primary Schools and representatives from outside agencies also attend and provide
parents with information and support.
Coffee Morning dates:
Wednesday 17th December, 2014, 9 am – 11 am
Tuesday 14th July, 2015, 9 am – 11 am
Mrs L R Cartwright - SENCo
PE News
Lauren Gregory 9O has competed for Staffordshire in the Inter County Cross
Country match today against West Midlands, Cheshire, Cumbria, Merseyside,
Surrey, Warwickshire, Shropshire, Kent and South Wales. She ran a great race
and came 18th.
U14 and U16 girls St John Fisher are Newcastle schools League Netball
Page 12 of 15
PE kit – a reminder
The same high standards in P.E. kit are insisted upon as for school uniform. Clothing with designer
labels (Adidas, Umbro etc) is unacceptable.
All pupils must have the following
• Plain white polo or T-shirt (SJF badge optional)
• Royal blue long sleeve games shirt with reversible gold band (SJF badge optional)
• Plain navy shorts and long socks
• White ankle sports socks
• Trainers (not fashion pumps)
• Football boots (ideally black)
• Shin pads (compulsory for hockey and football)
• Gum shields for rugby or hockey
• Towel (for all lessons)
• Navy tracksuit trousers (optional and to be worn at the discretion of P.E. staff)
• Plain navy sweatshirt/drill top (optional item as is the SJF badge)
• Lightweight water proof plain navy jacket (optional).
Governors understand that uniform costs can be substantial and it is acceptable for
tops/sweatshirts to be plain i.e. without the St John Fisher badge as long as items are the correct
style and colour. Please do not buy any PE kit with designer logos. Pupils who fail to bring kit will be
required to use kit provided by the PE department. This is not optional.
All PE kit should be labelled with the pupil’s name or initials, this makes returning any lost kit to
the correct pupil much easier. If you think your child has lost any PE kit please ask them, to
enquire in school and they can look in the lost property section. Many thanks.
There will be a GCSE PE theory revision club running every Monday night starting Monday 12th
January 2015 from 3.15 – 4.30. This will run for a total of 12 weeks.
Page 13 of 15
Jessica Koch 7T and Ellie Mae Martin 7S have written this
about KS3 Praise Assembly.
“On Monday 10th November we have our first praise
assembly. The assembly helped us to think about how we
should work hard to succeed. We enjoyed listening to the
Gospel story of the Paralysed Man because it showed us that
we can be our best if we work together. We also enjoyed
watching people be praised for everything they had done, like
hard work in different subjects, good behaviour and taking
part in different school activities.”
We have the following items of lost property that remain unclaimed:
An IPod handed in 17/12/13
A Samsung phone handed in 07/02/14
A black Nike Wallet handed in 20/03/14
A phone handed in 10th April 2014.
If anybody has lost these items or knows to whom they belong please contact Mrs Mountford in
school on 01782 346325, or see her in the finance office.
Harry Potter Quiz – book 1-4
Quizzes are always very popular in our library, and we recently held a HARRY POTTER quiz for
all our Potter Swotters!
The winners were Holly Madden 9O and Isabel McDonald 9S – Congratulations
Watch out for another Quiz in January JJJJJ.
Page 14 of 15
School Terms and Holiday Dates 2014 / 2015
Spring Term 2015:
Staff & Pupils:
Staff & Pupils:
Easter Sunday:
Monday 5 January – Friday 13 February
Monday 16 February – Friday 20 February
Monday 23 February – Thursday 2 April
Friday 3 April – Friday 17 April
Sunday 5 April
Summer Term 2015:
Staff & Pupils:
May Day:
Staff & Pupils:
Monday 20 April – Friday 22 May
Monday 4 May
Monday 25 May – Friday 29 May
Monday 1 June – Friday 17 July
Monday 20 July – Friday 4 September
School Terms and Holiday Dates 2015 / 2016
Autumn Term 2015:
Monday 7 September – Friday 23 October
Wednesday 9 September – Friday 23 October
Monday 26 October – Friday 30 October
Staff & Pupils:
Monday 2 November – Friday 18 December
Monday 21 December – Friday 1 January
Spring Term 2016:
Staff & Pupils:
Staff & Pupils:
Easter Sunday:
Monday 4 January – Friday 12 February
Monday 15 February – Friday 19 February
Monday 22 February – Thursday 24 March
Friday 25 March – Friday 8 April
Sunday 27 March
Summer Term 2016:
Staff & Pupils:
Monday 11 April – Friday 27 May
May Day:
Monday 2 May
Monday 30 May – Friday 3 June
Staff & Pupils:
Monday 6 June – Friday 22 July
Monday 25 July – Friday 2 September
Pupil absence line
If your child is ill
please ring the
school pupil
absence line 01782
346333 – which is
available 24 hours
a day. Don’t forget
to send a note in
when your child
returns after an
Page 15 of 15
Please come and join us in the
Our opening hours are:
8am – 5.30pm
Monday to Friday
Students are able to read and do their homework in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere in the
before and after school club. We especially look forward to welcoming our new Y7 students.
Students who use the after school club need to comply with the following rules:
• Students need to sign in and out of the library in order to comply with health and safety
• Students need to work quietly and respect the needs of other library users.
• Mobile phones are not to be used in the library.
If students choose to disregard our code of conduct then future library access will be restricted.
Mrs Owen and Ms Lambe
Ms Hanrahan
Articles contributed by staff and students
Compiled by Ms Lambe
The newsletter is available in full colour on the school website. If you would like the
newsletter in a printed format, please let the office know.
Ashfields New Road Newcastle Staffs ST5 2SJ
Tel 01782 615636 Fax 01782 346339
E: [email protected] or [email protected]
Web site: www.sjfcc.net