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Friday Letter - Issue 31

DEAR PARENTS

A PRAYER FOR PENTECOST - THE HOLY SPIRIT

O gracious and Holy Father, give us wisdom to perceive you, diligence to seek you, patience to wait for you, eyes to behold you, and a life to proclaim you, through the power of the Spirit of Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

EXCELLENT PARISH MASS AT OUR LADY'S LAST SUNDAY

A big thank you to Fr Latham, Deacons Pat and John and the whole congregation who were so welcoming as we joined the parishioners of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour for Mass last Sunday. We had a good turnout of singers, musicians and supporters who looked very smart in their summer uniforms. Thanks also to Mr Weekes, Miss Clapham and of course Anne-Marie for all their work. Well done to everyone involved.

AND THE FINAL PARISH MASS OF THE YEAR

Our final Parish Mass of this school year takes place at St John Fisher, West Heath at 6.00 pm on Saturday 19 June. We have numerous St John Fisher pupils in school so we look forward to a good turnout when we join Fr George and his parishioners for what is sure to be another lovely celebration.

YEAR 11 MASS AND EVENING OF CELEBRATION NEXT THURSDAY

By now all Year 11 parents should have received a letter in the post outlining our arrangements for Year 11 over the next couple of months. A key event is their final Mass and Evening of Celebration which will take place at 7.00 pm next Thursday, 27 May. It is bound to be a memorable and emotional evening as the whole year group celebrates Mass together for the very last time. We also hope to see an excellent turnout from parents and families. Full report shortly.

BABY DANIEL STEPHENSON RIP

We were all hugely saddened by the death of baby Daniel last week. Daniel was the nephew of Mr Stephenson and his funeral takes place next Tuesday. We pray for the repose of Daniel's soul and think of his parents, Paulette and Mike and the whole family at this very sad time. May he rest in peace.

MRS HELEN HUNT RIP

We were shocked to hear of the sudden and tragic death of Helen on Tuesday evening. Helen, a teacher at St Dunstan's Primary School, Kings Heath was involved in a dreadful car accident and sadly died. We pray for the repose of her soul and think of her family and the community of St Dunstan's at this dreadful time. May she rest in peace.

THANK YOU TO FATHER DENIS AND WELL DONE TO 7HGI

It was a pleasure to join the voluntary Mass this week which was celebrated by Fr Denis from Weoley Castle who replaced Fr Stefan. And well done too to Miss Ginns and her form 7HGI on an excellent turnout. Well done everyone.

FEAST DAY OF SS PETER AND PAUL ARRANGEMENTS

As you may be aware, the feast day of SS Peter and Paul on 29 June remains a holy day of obligation. Unfortunately, due to the examinations timetable there is no way that we can use the Sportshall as a venue for a whole school Mass. Consequently, to enable the pupils to attend Mass in their local parish we shall open for registration on that day at 10.30 am. I shall publish Mass times in our local parishes nearer the time.

LETTER TO YEAR 11 PARENTS

As mentioned above I have now written to all Year 11 parents outlining the practical details relating to the year group. We have been delighted with Year 11, particularly since Christmas and we believe they are on track to do exceptionally well this summer. Please read the details on www.stacs.org.

NEW SCHOOL DAY AND BUSES IN SEPTEMBER

I also wrote to all parents on Monday of this week setting out the details relating to the new school day that we will be following from September. Full details can be found on the website www.stacs.org but I can now confirm that I have had formal confirmation that Network Express will be providing a full bus service in September at 3.10 pm on Wednesdays as every other day. Naturally, the company will review the level of demand for the service but it will be there for anyone who needs it in September.

YEAR 10 REPORTS NEXT FRIDAY

This weekend the senior staff and myself will be checking and commenting on Year 10 reports in preparation for their distribution to parents next Friday. Watch this space.

IMPORTANT VISITS FROM GOVERNORS THIS WEEK

On Tuesday morning I was pleased to meet and welcome Miss Rebecca Coogan, the new Headteacher of St Brigid's Primary School to St Thomas Aquinas. I took Miss Coogan on a tour of the school and we discussed the important partnership between our schools. I am delighted to report that Miss Coogan has accepted the invitation to become a Foundation Governor of St Thomas Aquinas and I am sure she will be a great asset to us in the months and years ahead. On Wednesday morning I was also pleased to welcome Mr Gary Burns as our newly appointed Local Authority Community Governor. It was a pleasure to show Gary around and he was able to share some of his interests and expertise as well. Gary will become our Link Governor to the Science Faculty and he also has a particular interest in music and business. Again, I am sure that Gary will be a very welcome addition to the Governing Body.

ROAD SAFETY - A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH

The problem is that if I say it every week people ignore the warning. However, I ask everyone to pause and reflect on the road tragedy that took place on Tuesday evening. Too many of our pupils are failing to use the designated crossing at the lights on Wychall Lane and think it is fine to run across the road whenever they like. I ask parents once again to discuss road safety with your children - far better now than following a dreadful accident. Thank you.

WELCOME TO DAN PRESTON

It was good to see Dan once again this week. Blues fans maybe aware that Dan left us a couple of years ago to join Birmingham City and his football career has certainly developed since then. Following a loan spell at Hereford United Dan has now been offered a further contract at Blues for next season. He made a first team appearance as a substitute against Sunderland in the league cup wearing the number 30 shirt and Dan has been generous enough to pass it on to me. We shall be offering the shirt as a prize in the near future. Watch this space.

Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Practice Expedition - REPORT FROM MR MCINERNEY

Last weekend saw a strong army of 34 Year 9 pupils, 7 staff, 5 sixth form students and a baby descend on Earlswood for 2 days of walking and fun. Various skills were learnt throughout the weekend which included putting up tents, cooking on trangias and basic navigation skills. All the pupils were a credit to the school. For a full reportfrom Ursula Hardy along with pictures please see the website. Well done to: Tyrell Aldred-Jevons, Sophie Bates, Tegan Bates, Katie Boot, Courtney Burley, Reece Chapman-Carey, Hannah Cremin, Scarlett Darby, Amanda De Valliere, Pearse Duffy, Joshua Gannon, Katie Greaves, UrsulaHardy, Ellen Herbert, Hannah Higgins, Danielle Hodge, Hayley Hunter, Michael Kenny, Luke Kiely, Catherine Laverty, Benjamin Love, Molly McDonald, James McKee, Andrew Parkes, Tre'rail Peters, Declan Reville, Abi-Lee Roberts, Claire Robertson, Michael Sargeant, Leah Skerrett, Maddison Smith, Gregory Stanley, Kate Sumulong, Joanna Torlinski. Also thank you to our sixth form students Tom Farrell, Gerry Grandon, Andrew Kenny, Emily Monaghan and Emma Sergeant. Finally this could not have happened without the help from Miss Connolly, Mr Baker, Mrs Baker, Mr Flood, Mr Perry and Miss Stevens.

HEADTEACHER'S AWARD

This week's award goes to Miriam Gannon 13PHI who found herself in my discussion group at St Chad's Cathedral yesterday evening discussing youth provision in our Diocese. She was brilliant and a great ambassador for her school. Well done Miriam!

LAST WEEK'S QUIZ QUESTION

Michael Gove is the new Secretary of State for Education as we were correctly informed by Idris Ahmed of 8LSA who wins 5. Well done Idris!

THIS WEEK'S QUIZ QUESTION

It's the Champions League Final that Manchester United should have been contesting on Saturday evening - but I'm not bitter! Who are the 2010 Champions?

Yours sincerely

JIM FOLEY

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