The Newsletter – 12th November 2021
Anti-Bullying Week – 15th – 19th November 2021
Year 8 HPV Vaccinations – 19th November 2021
Year 11 Academy Photos – 24th November 2021
Flu Vaccinations – 2nd December 2021
Year 8 Academy Photos – 6th December 2021
Week 1 or 2
15th November 2021 – Week 2
22nd November 2021 – Week 1
29th November – Week 2
6th December 2021 – Week 1
Dear Parents and Carers,
I hope the latest edition of the newsletter finds you all well. We’re already two weeks into November and it’s feeling autumnal. It will get colder and wetter now, so please be sure to send your child with a suitable outdoor coat.
Unfortunately I have been alerted to the issue of malicious TikTok accounts which have been created by some of our students. This is a nationwide problem, but nevertheless, I am deeply concerned and disappointed that a small number of our students have created, liked, commented or shared some of the offensive material. These accounts have either impersonated, mocked or made deeply hurtful and unacceptable allegations against members of staff in our academy.
Last Friday, I explained to all students how inappropriate and unacceptable using social media in this way is and that the accounts and material were not only a breach of TikTok’s community guidelines, but, in some cases were against the law. We have had to contact the police and initiate investigations in some cases.
So many of our students have not engaged with this material at all, which is a credit to them. I would ask all parents and carers to check that their child understands the seriousness of the situation and that there is always a digital footprint, even when an ‘anonymous’ account is created.
We will never tolerate abuse or malicious allegations against staff or students at Walkden. Your support with this is very much appreciated.
We have now installed 45 carbon dioxide monitors in classrooms and they are providing us with good data on the air quality in those rooms. The heating and ventilation system is having to work a bit harder with the colder weather, but the monitors are providing staff and students with a useful prompt to open windows and doors wherever possible. If we can keep the figures low, it will undoubtedly help to reduce the risk of transmission within the building.
We are continuing to strongly recommend face coverings, taking advice from Public Health Salford. As ever, students should wear reusable ones, if possible, but we continue to have a stock, should students need them.
Over the past two weeks, we have had a handful of cases in most year groups, but there are no obvious links between them and they appear to be isolated incidents. If there is a marked increase in any year group, we will send a specific notification to parents and carers to alert you.
Many of our students are now vaccinated against Covid and the number of 12-15 year olds having the vaccine at Walkden are just above the national average.
It was great to see so many of our Year 11 at our careers event on Wednesday evening. They were joined by a great range of providers. These included colleges, sixth forms, universities, and organisations providing apprenticeship routes. There was a real buzz amongst students thinking about the next steps in their life journey. We’re certainly excited for them. As always, any students can access our careers advisory service through Mrs Loughnan, who can be reached at email@example.com.
We shared a whole academy remembrance service during Period 3 on Thursday. Year 7 joined us outside the front of the academy and all other year groups joined via a live stream. With a few reflective and poignant words and poems led by our cadets, along with the ‘Last Post’ played expertly by Mr Logie, it was a short and simple service. I am glad to say all students observed it respectfully too. We feel it is so important to use remembrance day as a learning experience. We need to reflect on the freedoms we all enjoy due to the sacrifices of others.
In assemblies this week, we have also been exploring the diversity within our forces. This has been another great learning opportunity for staff and students. Challenging prejudice and promoting tolerance is a key feature of our personal development curriculum.
As always, I wish you all a safe and restful weekend.
Attendance Matters – Written by Mr Simpson – Attendance Manager
As we return from the half term break, we are focusing on good health & hygiene for winter.
A series of assemblies will be held to remind students about good hygiene and looking after themselves and others.
Whilst COVID remains a focus for all of us, we also need to be conscious of the increase in colds, flu, and stomach bugs that circulate during the winter months. Students are encouraged to continue to wash their hands regularly, not share bottles, and keep themselves healthy as much as possible.
As a reminder, anyone with stomach upsets that have caused vomiting or diarrhea should remain off school and not return until symptoms are clear. It is advised to return after 48 hours following the last bout of sickness or diarrhea.
We continue to have a lot of students absent due to illnesses other than COVID. This will mean we may take longer to process absence messages. We advise parents to use MyEd wherever possible to report absences.
If you would like to discuss any concerns regarding absences due to illness, don’t hesitate to get in touch with the Attendance Team. We can advise, support or signpost to those who can offer the help you may need.
Pastoral Focus – Written by Mrs Simpson – Head of Year 9
Year 9 have made a great start to the current academic year. With the bubbles now removed, it’s been nice to see students back accessing whole school facilities for lessons and activities – it’s lovely to see them engaged and enjoying their learning across the academy, again.
It’s encouraging to see so many Year 9 students joining in with the Combined Cadet Force and it’s lovely to see them all looking so smart in their uniform. Enrichment activities are now back up and running in the Academy, therefore I’d really like to challenge my year group to take a step out of their comfort zone and try something new, learn a new skill and meet new people. There are lots on offer. You can find out more here.
We also have twenty girls who are currently taking part in the ‘Girls Out Loud’ mentoring project. The feedback from the girls is really positive and they look forward to seeing their ‘Big Sister’ Mentor every month.
Ten Year 9 students also attended Jamie’s farm, experiencing the variety of activities on a working farm. This was a positive experience for all students.
We are currently running a variety of awards. Every fortnight students in the year group have the opportunity to win a £5 Love2Shop voucher, they are awarded these for zero lates to lessons and zero behaviour points in a week.
Ways of Being Awards
Do what matters most – Stefania 9SMS – Stefania had the confidence to speak at open evening.
Be yourself, always – Dillon – 9DLO – Dillon always comes into school with a positive attitude, looking forward to his day.
Show you care – Benjamin 9DLO – Ben supports and looks out for younger students who may be struggling.
Succeed Together – Lola – 9DLO – During a performance, watched by the Year 9s, Lola had the confidence to get up in front of the whole year group and try out an activity.
Remembrance Day Commemorations
On 11th November 2021, we commemorated Remembrance Day at the Academy with a service led by the Cadets. The service was attended, in person, by Year 7 students and was held outside—other year groups had the service live streamed to them.
Students and staff took time to reflect on the sacrifices other people have made to give them the lives they enjoy.
Further, our Combined Cadet Force will be representing us in the community on Sunday 14th November 2021 at the annual Remembrance Sunday service, alongside the Walkden Legion.
Our students have the chance to win big throughout December with our Advent prizes.
Every day that we are in the Academy, students are in with a chance of winning fabulous prizes. These include chocolate, Christmas jumpers, speakers, and vouchers; that’s 16 big prizes to play for.
All students can be in with a chance to win! All they need to do is:
- have 100% punctuality to form time and all lessons
- accrue no behaviour points
Good luck to all students!
What’s Going On
Between 15th – 19th November, we are promoting Anti-Bullying Week in the Academy. This is in conjunction with the Anti-Bullying Alliance.
Students will be having an Anti-Bullying Week assembly and there are lots of activities to get involved with, including wearing odd socks, nominating Anti-Bullying Pioneers and sending staff and students ‘one kind word’.
You can read more here.
Black History Month Activities
In October, we celebrated Black History Month. We hosted our first Black History Month Group and offered students the chance to choose books for our library that were Black British authored.
Two of our departments got involved in creating their own Black History Month projects too.
The staff and students in the Inclusion Centre worked on some beautiful art to show their learning about Black History and the Food Technology staff hosted a workshop, cooking up a feast of traditional African dishes.
Well done to all staff and students involved!
The National Arboretum Museum Trip – Written by Captain Murphy
On Thursday 4th November, 12 senior Cadets visited the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire.
The aim of the visit was for the Cadets to see how the Arboretum honour the fallen.
The Arboretum has over 400 memorials so as you can imagine the Cadets could only see a selected few.
The image shows the Cadets at the ‘Shot at Dawn’ memorial. This is a statue of Private Herbert Burden who lied about his age to enlist into the armed forces and was later shot for desertion. He was later identified as having PTSD and was pardoned in 2007 with a further 309 soldiers who faced the same fate.
After the guided tour, the Cadets had free time to wander around the Arboretum. On this walk around, they collected information for a team presentation. This presentation will be delivered to the rest of the Combined Cadet Force and in a Year 7 assembly.
The Cadets were well behaved, showed respect to the memorials and used good manners to other visitors. Well done to all of them who represented our community in an exemplary way.
Congratulations to our Music department who have achieved the Music Mark.
This is awarded to schools that offer a high-quality provision.
Students can take advantage of the excellent groups and opportunities offered by the Music department by joining an extra-curricular group.
The Music department currently offers:
- Rock School
- Pop Choir
- Ukulele Club
- Academy Band
as well as peripatetic music lessons covering a range of instruments with MAPAS.
The extra-curricular timetable can be found here.
Home Language Examinations – Year 9 to 11
- Is your child in Year 9 – 11?
- Can they speak another language?
- Can they read and write fluently in this language?
If so, they may be able to take an exam in their home language.
To express your interest, please fill out this Google Form before 1st December 2021.
Parents and Carers – Can you speak another language? Are you interested in improving your English?
Salford City Council has an ‘English for Speakers of Other Languages Service’ which can help you, as a parent or carer, to improve your English.
There are various different groups available such as social English, which focuses on speaking skills, and groups to help you get into employment.
If you wish to find out more information, please visit this website https://gmesol.org/esol-in-salford/
Alternatively, you can contact the ESOL team at Salford City Council using the following link and selecting Salford.
Jamie’s Farm Trip – Written by Miss Garner
On Monday 4th October, Mr Paulden, Captain Murphy, and I set off for Jamie’s Farm in Monmouth along with 11 students. Surrounded by rolling hills and some amazing views, Duffield’s Farm is nestled above the stunning Wye Valley and the Forest of Dean.
On arrival, we met the team around what could be the biggest table I’ve ever seen! There, we were given our first tasks, which mainly included getting to know the furry residents and how to behave around them.
All of our students were excited, and they were naturals around the animals.
Every day the students were up at 7:30 am and ready for 8 am to start their jobs. On the first morning, we were split into groups. In our groups, we began mucking in (and out!) on the farm before breakfast.
One group went off to wake and feed the chickens, ducks, and pigs; another walked and brushed the horses before checking on the cows. The final group prepared our two-course breakfast.
After a much-needed breakfast, we moved on to the second round of jobs! These jobs included gardening, log chopping, and fence making. We also got involved in making dinner, getting to know the horses, going off to the market to sell/collect sheep, sheep herding, and sometimes even sheep vaccinating!
All of our mealtimes were spent together around the ginormous table, and all of the food we ate was locally sourced.
After dinner, we would set off for an afternoon walk/hike. On the Wednesday, we walked a total of 7.5km as we trekked through The Forest of Dean, leaving Wales and entering England by hopping over a stream! We spotted all sorts of wildlife, including deer tracks, on our walk, but unfortunately, we were a little too chatty for the deer to stop and say hello. When we reached our destination, we sat and took in the spectacular view with some hot chocolate and homemade flapjacks.
In the evening, after we had showered, we headed down for tea. Tea was prepared by the Jamie’s Farm chef Luke. Every morning and night, we would do a ‘check in’ whilst enjoying our food. Everybody, including the adults, would give a number and explain why they felt like that particular number. We then gave a ‘shout out’ to someone else on the trip; this could be for hard work or a thank you for something that had happened that day. The students got to know each other because of the team-building activities, and by Friday, nobody wanted to leave!
Some nights we played games. On other nights, we watched a movie on the projector in the lounge with blankets and a fire to keep us toasty.
After all that excitement, it was off to bed. By 9:30 pm, we were worn out!
Whilst I was at Jamie’s Farm, I realised that being somewhere remote was good for your mental health. We had no phone signal, no artificial light outside at night, and plenty of walking. All of this helped me reset and made me realise that I needed to get back into walking and hiking.
The Jamie’s Farm staff were unbelievably welcoming. They instilled a family feeling amongst everyone there, especially at 9:30 pm when they would bring Mr Paulden, Captain Murphy, and me a brew for bed.
After the trip, one of the staff from Jamie’s Farm came to visit us at Walkden.
They came to catch up and see how things how were. He also handed us our postcards. The postcards consisted of us with our favourite animal/activity whilst on the farm. I chose Whizz, the resident Springer Spaniel who wouldn’t leave my side during our morning jobs.
We had a fantastic week, and I can see why Mr Paulden signed up to go back again this time around. The students had a great time, and I know they loved every moment.
Leading the Way
Our students take part in activities online that enhance their learning beyond the classroom. These activities are delivered through online platforms that track their progress, improving motivation through praise and reward.
Our students are amazing! They work so hard, and we want to shout about their success on these platforms.
In our newsletters, from this edition onwards, we will be sharing some of the stats and improvements from three of these platforms, Bedrock, Tassomai, and LanguageNut.
The stats and rankings in this edition were correct up the W/E 5th November 2021.
Our students are reading more than ever!
In fact, they are reading 15% more this month compared to last.
A huge congratulations to 8S/Li2! You made the most progress this month, with a 74% improvement.
Keep up the great work, and we will keep shouting about your success!
Well done to our Year 10 and 11 Scientists who are storming the Tassomai leagues!
Year 11 have answered 31049 science questions this fortnight!
Well done to Grace and Izabela, who were both in the top three students who achieved the highest daily goals in Year 11.
Year 10 have answered 15578 science questions this fortnight!
In Year 10, the top three students, who achieved the highest daily goals, are Finn, Abbey, and Ruby.
Congratulations to our students who are working hard on developing their language skills.
Currently, Co-op Academy Walkden sits in the Top 100 schools in the world ranking.
The top three classes for this fortnight are:
- 8E/Sp1 – 625700 points
- 8E/Fr1 – 625700 points
- 7E/Sp2 – 519200 points
A focus on our 2021 leavers success
On GCSE results day, we caught up with some of our students to ask them about their time at Walkden and celebrate their exciting prospects. In this edition, we want to shine a light on the success of Ruby and Matthew.
Hi Ruby, well done on your fabulous results! What’s next for you?
I am now going to go to Winstanley College.
Excellent news, what are you hoping to study at Winstanley?
I am going to study A-levels in Economics, Politics, Sociology and History.
And what do you hope to do after college?
I want to get on to a degree apprenticeship.
What has been the best bit about being a Co-op Academy Walkden student?
The relationships that I have made with the teachers and students have been the best bit about being at the Academy. I have never had any issues, and it’s such a friendly environment to go to school in. The staff have been great, making up for lost time this year. They have given us more independent work to complete, which has helped.
What piece of advice would you give to our new Year 7 students?
Always work hard because you never know what might happen!
Thanks Ruby, we wish you all the best in the future.
Hi Matthew, well done on your fabulous results! What’s next for you?
I’m going to enrol onto A-levels at Winstanley College.
Excellent news, what subjects are you hoping to study at Winstanley?
I am going to study Biology, Chemistry, and Computer Science.
And what do you hope to do after college?
I want to go to University and study medicine.
What has been the best bit about being a Co-op Academy Walkden student?
I have enjoyed learning lots of new things, and I have enjoyed making friends too. The staff at the academy have helped me to reach the best grades. I have had such great teachers, and I want to thank them all.
What piece of advice would you give to our new Year 7 students?
Focus on your lessons.
What piece of advice would you give to the Year 10 students who are just starting their GCSE courses?
Don’t worry too much; just work hard and it will pay off.
Thanks Matthew, good luck with your future.
Sonny’s Mum got in touch to let us know about Sonny’s Maths success.
Sonny’s Mum said, “Last week the year group (Year 7) were involved in a Maths competition, competing against the other form groups at Walkden and also other academies. Sonny was determined to do well and worked hard most evenings answering questions. Not only did his form win the competition but Sonny got first place and was top of the leaderboard! Super proud of him and the rest of his form. Hard work does pay off!”
Well done Sonny – we are super proud of you for doing what matters most!
Over the half term holiday, Tomas and Carter were involved in the North West Counties final playing for local club Folly Lane Crusaders held at Crossfields, Warrington.
After going behind in the first 10 minutes the team pulled back an amazing win with tries from Tomas and Carter to bring home the trophy with a score of 22-6.
They are now in with a chance to win the league in the Under-13 table.
Good luck for the double!
Holly’s Sale Sharks Rugby Success – Written by Mrs Quinn
I was delighted to spot ex-student Hollie Bawden flying up the wing on Saturday to score a whopping four tries.
Hollie transferred this season to Sale Sharks Women’s Rugby team from Loughborough and she is clearly showing off her talents to her new team.
Hollie is in her final year at Loughborough University.
What an inspiring and talented young lady!
Word of the Week
This half term, we’re introducing a further six words to the students via word of the week. We encourage the students to engage with the word of the week by setting activities.
These are the first three words:
We’d encourage parents and carers to talk about these words and encourage their child to use them in conversation and their work.
Maths Puzzle – Provided by Mrs Meah – Maths Teacher
How can you add eight 8s together so that it equals 1,000?
Email your answer to Mrs Meah via firstname.lastname@example.org and get a shout-out in the following newsletter.
The answer to the last maths puzzle was three apples and eight oranges.
Well done to Sophie who got the correct answer!
Has your child done something amazing inside or outside the Academy?
Why not get in touch and let us know about it?
We want to feature our students’ successes in the newsletter and let our community celebrate with you.
Email success stories and feedback to email@example.com.
Got feedback about the newsletter? Let us know at the same address!
We always appreciate your feedback.