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OFSTED Inspection, November 2018

FINAL REPORT

Read about our school full of “articulate, courteous and polite” students who display “excellent attitudes to their learning”. This is a journey of school improvement and we have only just got started.

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Our School...

Highest number of applications for places in Year 7 next year since 2005!

Thursday Letter - Issue 36

DEAR PARENTS

 

A PRAYER FOR GIVING THANKS

For our friends, our families and those who care for us, Lord we give thanks.  For each new day and the potential to see it to make a difference, Lord we give thanks.  For the examples of others that help us to walk the right path in life, Lord we give thanks.  For life's challenges as well as its rewards, Lord we give thanks.  For all that has gone before us, and all that is to come, Lord we give thanks.  Amen.

 

IMPORTANT FAMILY MASS NEXT THURSDAY - EVERYONE IS WELCOME

A reminder that next Thursday at 7.30 pm we shall be holding our termly Family Mass which will also be a Mass of Thanksgiving for two wonderful servants of our school, Mrs Nuala Jones and Mrs Irene Barclay.  Both Mrs Jones as Deputy Head and Mrs Barclay as Assistant Head are very well known to families in our school so it would be great if you would come along and join us next Thursday. 

 

MRS LYNN O'DONNELL RIP

On Monday the funeral took place of Mrs Lynn O'Donnell, wife of my good friend and colleague, Seamus O'Donnell who is the headteacher of Archbishop Ilsley School.  You may recall that Lynn died suddenly whilst visiting her parents in Australia and Seamus and their children, Christopher and Kirsty had the appalling task of travelling to Australia to bring Lynn's body back to Birmingham.  The funeral was at St John Fisher Church where Lynn and Seamus were married 38 years ago.  We pray for the repose of Lynn's soul and remember Seamus, Christopher, Kirsty and the whole family at this terribly sad time.  May she rest in peace.

 

MRS FREDA WARD RIP

Freda, the mother of Mrs Munro, Pastoral Officer in the Manion Centre, died recently.  We pray for the repose of her soul and think of Liz and the whole family at this sad time.  May she rest in peace.

 

WELCOME TO FR GEORGE

Today we were looking forward to the visit of Fr George, Parish Priest of St John Fisher West Heath.  I know that Father was looking forward to touring the school, meeting lots of staff and students, particularly those from his parish.  Full report next week.

 

ACORNS HOSPICE - A REQUEST FROM MR DENENY

Following the theft of goods intended for sale for the Acorns Hospice there is an appeal for us to provide any goods, clothing, books, videos, cds, dvds and household goods for sale in the many Acorns shops in the Midlands.  If any families can help with this appeal please deliver items to your local Acorns shop or directly to Acorns, Oak Tree Lane, Selly Oak.  Many thanks.

 

NON UNIFORM DAY - THANK YOU

Thank you once again for your incredible generosity.  Last Friday's non uniform day raised £716 which will go to support the wonderful work done by St Mary's Hospice including the love and care given to our good friend and colleague, Mick Fitzgerald who died earlier this year.

 

TWO WONDERFUL EVENINGS WITH YEAR 6 THIS WEEK

It's always a pleasure to welcome the children from Year 6 who will be joining us in September.  They arrived in force with their parents on Monday and Tuesday evenings and, in line with the longstanding Aquinas tradition, it was blisteringly warm on both evenings.  This year there was added excitement as we introduced the House system including a uniform display expertly modelled by some wonderful current Year 7 students.  After meeting their individual heads of house, parents and children then had the opportunity to buy the uniform from our two suppliers, Clive Mark and Mansuri.  As always, a huge thank you to the many staff who supported both evenings and well done to our models!  And next Wednesday we look forward to the Year 6 children joining us for the day.

 

AND AT THE OTHER END OF THE SPECTRUM IT'S GOODBYE TO YEAR 13

22 other staff and I joined lots of Year 13 students at the Novotel on Broad Street last Friday evening.  Parents will be surprised to hear that it is not where I spend most of my Friday evenings but on this occasion it was a pleasure to join our most senior students as they leave us to take their place in the world.  Most of them joined us as young boys and girls in 2003 and now they leave us as the fine young men and women they have become.  They will continue to be in our thoughts and prayers this summer and in their future lives.  A big thank you to Mrs Lockyear, Miss O'Reilly and the whole staff team for a really good evening.

 

TOMORROW IT IS TARGET REVIEW DAY

As you know, tomorrow is Target Review Day and all students from Year 7 to Year 10, without exception, are expected to attend at the appointed time.  They should be in place 15 minutes before the interview in full school uniform armed with their planner.  Of course, parents are more than welcome and I know that many of you place a high priority on this interview, even on a busy working day.  Full report next week.

 

AND OUR UNIFORM SUPPLIERS WILL BE HERE

Further to the text that you should have received yesterday I can confirm that both of our suppliers, Clive Mark and Mansuri will be in the School Hall all day selling school uniform.  As you know, the clip-on tie in house colours is compulsory for September although new sweatshirts are not required.  I can tell you that both suppliers are making incredible offers that expire at the end of July so this is a real opportunity for a bargain.  Good luck!

 

WHAT A FANTASTIC ART AND DESIGN EXHIBITION

Every year we are stunned by the quality of our students' work in Art and Design.  Following the moderators' visit for both GCSE and A Level it is such a privilege to see the work on display as it was after school on Monday.  I was not surprised to hear that the visits went extremely well and we look forward to some exceptional results in the summer.  Congratulations to all our students and of course to the talented teachers from the various disciplines in the Technology Faculty.

 

YEARS 7 AND 8 REPORTS

Congratulations to the vast majority of our younger students who seem to be doing exceptionally well at St Thomas Aquinas.  In recent weeks, like all the staff, I have been knee deep writing and checking reports and even though it's an onerous task it is always worthwhile to celebrate the amazing achievements of our young people.  I ask parents to take the time to sit down with your son or daughter, congratulate them on what they have accomplished and discuss any areas for improvement.  Thank you.

 

DANCERS DISPLAY THEIR TALENT

Last Friday six of our Year 9 students took part in the celebration of a cultural week at Our Lady and St Rose of Lima Primary School.  As well as giving a demonstration of Irish dancing the girls also were stars in leading small workshops with the students from the school.  Well done to Katie Boot, Jade Bridgewater, Hayley Hunter, Hayley McCabe, Alice McIntosh and Leah Skerrett.

 

ROME 2010 - REPORT FROM MR TOAL

Last weekend 38 students from Years 8 and 9 left school in the early hours of Saturday morning to leave for the Eternal City with Mrs O'Connell, Miss Samuel, Mr Toal and Mr Smyllie.  This is usually a wonderful trip and we are sure the students will come back with many memories of their visit.

 

POETRY CAFÉ AT THE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF BIRMINGHAM - REPORT FROM MISS ARTHURS

Last Tuesday afternoon, nine poetry competition winners were invited to the University of Birmingham to collect anthologies containing their published poems and spend time reading and looking at different forms of poetry. Following a prize giving (and a variety of snacks!), the students from schools across the city were given a range of stimulus and then helped by University students to hone their writing skills. Congratulations to all of our winners from Year 10 and Year 7!

 

EXCELLENT PRIMARY INDOOR ATHLETICS EVENT ON WEDNESDAY

Once again, a fantastic contest as our Catholic Primary Feeder Schools battled it out to be 2010 Indoor Athletic champions.  Our MC Mr McInerney did not draw breath for two hours until the eventual winners emerged.  Congratulations to St Mary's who defeated St Edward's by a single point. Well done to everyone involved particularly Miss Jordan for coordinating a fantastic tournament.

 

LAST WEEK'S QUIZ QUESTION

Oh the pain!  As we now know, the first goal in last Sunday's game was scored by Miroslav Klose of Germany.  It was so well defended I could have scored it myself!  Congratulations to Connor Anderson of 7GME who wins the £10 rollover.

 

THIS WEEK'S QUIZ QUESTION

A quick change of sports is required as the nation's hopes now rest on Andy Murray.  For £5 who is the 2010 Wimbledon Men's Singles Champion?

 

Yours sincerely

 

JIM FOLEY

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