WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 26 November 2021

Year 11 taster days 

A reminder that the deadline for booking a January Taster Day at York College is 28 November.

If your child is in Year 11 and is thinking of moving to York College in September, please make sure they have booked a Taster Day before Sunday. The documentation that students need to book places can be accessed here.

Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner (traditional turkey or a vegetarian option) will be served on Wednesday 8 December this year. Tickets, priced at £2.40, are now on sale via ParentPay.

Children who are eligible for free school meals will not have to pay but will still need a ticket so that we know whether they would like the meat or vegetarian option. Please log in to ParentPay in the normal way to make your choice(s).

Your child’s form tutor will distribute tickets to students on the day.

Wake Up Wednesday – A Parent Guide to Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency is a relatively new online software enabling the storage of digital coins which represent financial value. As today’s guide explains, it is something of a minefield, not least the risk of being permanently locked out of any accumulated funds if you forget your password.

Please have a read of this guide and discuss it with your child(ren)…it may also be handy for any adults who are using this software!

Coats for refugees 

One of our parents is collecting warm coats for refugees in Calais. If you have a coat to donate, there will be a collection box in the visitor reception for the next two weeks.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 19 November 2021

Year 11 Pre-Public Exams (PPEs)

Over the next two weeks, Year 11 students will be sitting PPEs (mock exams) in most subjects. Students have been given individual timetables for all their exams. Because of the timing of exams, Year 11 students will take their lunch in the earlier slot (12.20-1.00pm) during this period.

Year 11 taster days 

Information has gone out to parents and students about the two Year 11 taster days on 11 and 13 January 2022. The documentation that students need to book places can be accessed here.

Year 10 work experience

For those parents who were unable to attend the parents meeting yesterday, please click here for a copy of the presentation and the documentation that your child will need to complete and bring back to school once they have found a placement.

For any queries please contact Mr Noble or Mrs Anderson at school via e-mail. The deadline for returning forms is 28 January 2022.

Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner (traditional turkey or a vegetarian option) will be served on Wednesday 8 December this year. Tickets, priced at £2.40, are now on sale via ParentPay. Children who are eligible for free school meals will still need a ticket, but there is no cost. Your child’s form tutor will distribute tickets to students on the day.

Assemblies next week

We are running a reduced assemblies schedule next week because the Main Hall is being used for Year 11 exams. Year 11 will have no assemblies so they can focus on their PPEs.

On 25 November there is an international awareness day for the elimination of violence against women. We have invited IDAS (Independent Domestic Abuse Services) in to deliver assemblies to Year 9 and Year 10. The charity works with victims of abuse but is also trying to branch out into preventative work in schools. We have asked them to focus on ‘healthy relationships’. They will talk about what these look like and some of the signs that a relationship isn’t healthy and briefly look at abusive relationships. This will be quality assured so that it is age appropriate whilst not avoiding an issue that unfortunately affects so many. Although the assembly will look at the issue via a positive lens, we realise this topic could be difficult for some of our students. If you would rather your son or daughter does not to take part in the assembly, then please contact your child’s year team.

Key Stage 3 team building

Today, all Key Stage 3 students have taken part in fun team building activities with their form and form tutor. Each year group enjoyed two hours of fun: one hour on an inflatable assault course and one hour completing a series of challenges. The events were organised and hosted by their Head of Year and Deputy Head of Year and the students had a superb time. You can see a few photos here.

An enormous thank you to everyone who was involved – The Pastoral Team, Mrs Stanyon, Mrs Kuhn and Mrs Brown for the organisation and logistics, to the Form Tutors, and to colleagues who covered lessons to enable all form tutors to attend. Also, a huge thank you to the students. They participated in a lovely manner, encouraging one another and doing their best. It was lovely to see!

The Eco Laundry

The Eco Laundry, our store of preloved uniform items, has become a popular resource for families as students grow in and out of different sizes of clothes. For a small charge, you can get Millthorpe uniform pieces, including blazers (£3), shoes (£3), jumpers (£2), PE kit (£2), trousers/skirts (£2), shirts (£1) and ties (£1). Now the weather is getting a little colder, you’ll be glad to know that we have a good stock of Millthorpe jumpers and a selection of winter coats.

If your child needs new (to you) uniform items, you can email ecolaundry@millthorpe.southbank.academy with your request. Just let the Eco Laundry volunteers know the name of the student, what items you require and what sizes. Provided we have the correct item and size, we will then pack them up and let you know when it’s ready for collection from the school office. The cost will then be added to your ParentPay account.

The Eco Laundry is open to everyone in school. Reusing clothes is an easy way for us all to protect the environment, so we are always keen to receive donations of school clothing. Any donations can be dropped off at any time to the School Office. All donations are then sorted, washed and labelled ready to find a new home.

Further group chat concerns

This week, we emailed all Year 7 and 8 parents as we became aware of two highly inappropriate group chats involving Year 7 and 8 students across the City of York. We made direct contact with any parents/carers whose child was thought to be actively involved, but we wanted to ask all parents and carers to once again check their child’s mobile phone and social media use.

Young people are being sent or accessing material which is highly inappropriate so please do take the time to speak to your child(ren) and check their devices.

10 ways to share kindness online

This week is Anti-Bullying Week; students have received assemblies from Mr Bates on this theme. National Online Safety’s “Wake Up Wednesday” gives young people top tips about how to share kindness online. We have shared this with students in school, but would be grateful if you could also discuss this with your child(ren) at home to encourage positivity online.

Roots to Success

The Roots to Success programme which aims to increase the number of young people going on to Higher or Further Education is still recruiting eligible students – the deadline has been extended until 1 December.

This short film explains what the programme is all about.

The Uni Connect programme – privacy notice

Students in Years 9-11 will be given the opportunity to access advice about different Higher Education pathways, through the Uni Connect programme. This is a national programme funded by the Office for Students (OfS), which aims to promote the benefits of university and other forms of higher education, particularly among under-represented groups.

All students in Years 9-11 should be aware of the Privacy Notice which relates to this programme. Please could we ask parents/carers to bring this to their attention?

Bishop Burton College – new prospectus

Students in Years 10 and 11 may be interested in Bishop Burton College’s new prospectus. It can be downloaded here.

ISSP lecture

A reminder that the next ISSP lecture for students in Years 7-8 is on 25 November. The lecture, “What is endocrinology and who are endocrinologists?” is open to all students in Years 7-8, not just those on the ISSP register. Click here to find out more and sign up.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 12 November 2021

Millthorpe remembers 

Following on from remembrance assemblies led by Mr Baybutt last week, our whole school community fell silent for two minutes at 11.00am on Thursday to mark Armistice Day. Mr Jackson sounded the Last Post in the quad, as all students impeccably observed the silence.

Lest We Forget.

Parents’ Forum

Members of the new Parents’ Forum met for the first time last night to discuss the results of the recent Parents’ Survey. We’d like to thank those who gave up their evening to attend.

Participants shared their ideas on students’ learning journeys, student progress and personal development. There was a lot of great feedback which will now be taken back to the Senior Leadership Team (SLT). One idea that can be actioned straight away is to make parents aware of the week’s assembly topics. This will enable conversations around the dinner table on certain subjects, help them to reiterate key messages and to explore the topics further.

Every week students take part in two assemblies, one from a member of SLT and the other led by their Head of Year. Topics are mapped across the year to ensure all major personal development areas are covered as well as national/international awareness events.

The general themes are:

  • Broader Curriculum: developing interests and talents
  • Character Curriculum: Discuss traits like resilience and confidence
  • Next Steps: Careers and post-16 opportunities
  • Modern Britain: Discuss topics like protected characteristics
  • SMSC: Spiritual, moral, social and cultural
  • RSHE: Relationships and sex education
  • Citizenship: locally and as a global citizen
This week our assemblies covered:
  • SLT Assembly: Sexual harassment (Not covered with Year 7 due to today’s vaccinations)
  • Head of Year Assembly: Young carers (see later in this email for more details)
We had a great response to our request for membership of the forum; thank you to all those who came forward. Unfortunately, we were unable to include everyone as we wanted to ensure that all participants had the opportunity to contribute during the meeting and so took the decision to limit numbers on the Google Meet.

Young Carers

All year groups have received an assembly this week on Young Carers awareness and we are really pleased to announce that our Young Carers drop-in sessions have also returned. The sessions run on Wednesday ‘A’ Week, from 12.30-1.00pm for students in Years 7 and 8 and 1.30-2.00pm for students in Years 9, 10 and 11.

If you would like to know more about support available for Young Carers through Millthorpe School or York Carers Centre, or you would like your child to access this support, please contact Miss Johnson or Mrs Hurst for further information.

Christmas Concert

The Music Department are hoping to stage a short Christmas Concert on the evening of Wednesday 15 December. Full details will follow in the weekly email over the coming weeks.

Outstanding Learning Conduct

Teachers of students in Years 10 and 11 have recently completed the Learning Conduct tracking for these year groups. Year 11 students have received their data and Year 10 will receive it on Monday. The results are amazing!

In both Year 10 and 11, 94% of students have an average learning conduct of 3 or better. A 3 is awarded where students are meeting all expectations and are working hard in lessons, completing all of their work and homework, responding to challenge and seeking to improve. Students who work at a learning conduct grade of 3 historically achieve their target grades in their GCSEs.

Additionally, more than half of both year groups have an average learning conduct of 3.5 or above. Year 10 have slightly edged it with 54% of Year 10 achieving this remarkable feat, compared to 52% of Year 11. These students will have achieved 3s and 4s in every subject and in subjects where their learning conduct is a 4, historically, students surpass their GCSE targets.

We are really impressed with our KS4 students as they are clearly working incredibly hard on their GCSE courses. Well done to both year groups!

Ecological project

Building on the connections our Art Technician Mr Fletcher has with the Vangarde Shopping Centre, the retail park’s site management team are very keen to work with Millthorpe School on an ecological project.

The team at Vangarde are taking part in an ecological challenge, which involves creating natural habitats for bees and other insects, and are competing with other shopping parks around the country to win a prestigious prize for the York site.

The project breaks down into the following stages:

  • Build six bird boxes, four small bee hotels, two large insect hotels made from pallets, and the care and maintenance of a large planter on the site which is currently neglected.
  • Create bird box kits and bee hotel kits which can be customised and assembled by Millthorpe students.
  • Source twelve pallets to create two large insect hotels, to be assembled by students.
  • Once all the items are completed, a handover to Vangarde Shopping Park will be arranged, with possible press involvement and an article explaining and promoting the project.

We are asking for three student volunteers to take on the large planter. Students would be involved in the initial design stage, plant selection, getting their hands dirty and occasional maintenance as the seasons change. We feel that this a brilliant opportunity to give some budding David Attenboroughs the chance to support local wildlife as they try and make it through the winter.

If your child is interested in the above or you simply want to find out more about the project please email Mr Fletcher directly on E: j.fletcher@millthorpe.southbank.academy

Year 8 boys’ football team

Congratulations to the Year 8 football team who followed up their impressive 8-1 win over Jo Ro with another convincing win, this time against Bootham.

Mr Boothman said “The lads were on the front foot from the off, scoring within the first two minutes. Bootham came forward straight away for a well deserved equaliser but this was the only resistance that the team came up with. A barrage of attacking football put Bootham to the sword with Millthorpe coming out with a 10-1 victory. A confident performance from the Bootham centre back and goalkeeper saved the Bootham team from an even heavier defeat! There were many standout performances but credit has to go to the whole team for an outstanding evening of football! Well done!”

Parent Guide to Netflix

Netflix is an incredibly popular on-demand streaming service which saw a surge in use by children during the pandemic and beyond. Today’s Wake Up Wednesday guide from National Online Safety highlights some of the risks involved in using Netflix, and also some really helpful advice for parents and carers.

Eborienteers Club

Orienteering club, Eborienteers, holds its club night at Millthorpe School every Monday evening during term time. It is run by a British champion, Steve Whitehead and they would love to welcome members along. (Children must be accompanied by an adult.)

For further information, please visit the Eborienteers website or email Bryan Greener (one of the organisers) at contact@eborienteers.org.uk

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 5 November 2021

Proposed merger consultation

A reminder that the consultation on the proposal for South Bank Multi Academy Trust to join with South York Multi Academy Trust will run until 3.00pm on 12 November 2021.

This letter contains full details about the proposal and consultation and you can complete the feedback form here (please note this will download as a Word document). Please email your completed form to consultation@southbanktrust.co.uk by the deadline.

‘Reducing the pressures of Year 10’ workshop and team building events

This morning, Year 10 participated in two events which were planned and delivered by their Head of Year, Ms Hodgson and Deputy Head of Year, Ms Bramwell. Students worked with their forms and form tutors on a series of team building challenges and also received a ‘Reducing the pressures of Year 10’ workshop to help them as they juggle the demands of the start of GCSEs.

Both events were a roaring success and you can find a couple of photos here. Thank you to Ms Hodgson and Ms Bramwell for planning and delivering these events, to the Year 10 Form Tutors for their encouragement and participation (you can see Mr Black joining in one of the challenges on one of the photos!) and to Mrs Kuhn and Mrs Brown for all of their help with arranging the logistics.

Year 11 ‘Exploring Pathways’ event, managing exam stress and team building

Today, Year 11s have spent the morning participating in an ‘Exploring Pathways’ event, where they learnt about lots of opportunities that are available to them once they leave Millthorpe.

There was a Careers Fair in the Main Hall, with stalls, informative talks and workshops from local colleges, sixth forms, universities, apprenticeship providers and more.

In the afternoon, students received a ‘Managing Exam Stress’ workshop from their Head of Year, Mrs Parr, which is timely as students are busily revising for the imminent Pre-Public Examinations. They then also took part in team building games with their form and form tutors, organised and delivered by Mrs Roberts, their Deputy Head of Year.

A huge thank you to all of the staff who were involved in making these events happen. The students took a lot from it and it will really benefit them moving forward. You can see a few photos here.

Student Leadership – application deadline extended

Due to circumstances beyond our control, we are aware that some Year 10 students have not been able to apply to become a Student Leader. To ensure everyone has the opportunity to do so, we have extended the application deadline to Friday 12 November.

The application form can be dowloaded here, or students can get a copy from their form tutor, Mr Black or Mr Sloan.

Language GCSEs 

Every year several students are supported through an additional GCSE in their home language. If your son/daughter has a home language which is not English and in which he/she is fluent, please contact Mrs Domin-Boci E: a.domin-boci@millthorpe.southbank.academy for further information.

Instrument Donation Scheme

Due to the success of the Millthorpe School Instrument Donation Scheme, we now have a few instruments available for pupils to try out. If your child would like to have a go on a trumpet, violin, flute or cello then please contact Mr Jackson E: b.jackson@millthorpe.southbank.academy or Mrs Wright E: c.wright@millthorpe.southbank.academy for further details.

PE/Games reminders: cold weather clothing

As the weather starts to change, parents/carers and students are reminded that:

  • wearing two layers for outdoor games is a good idea, ie a t-shirt/skin/thermal layer under a reversible games top or a school navy fleece.
  • a suitable pair of gloves and/or hat may also be appropriate, especially for students who struggle with the cold.
  • all students are permitted to wear navy blue or black skins or leggings under their navy shorts in outdoor Games lessons during the colder months.
  • students may also wear the uniform tracksuit bottoms (available from Keal Teamwear).
  • students should always bring navy shorts, as this is a compulsory item of PE/Games kit.
  • wearing the additional items is optional.

Please note that the indoor PE kit remains unchanged. 

Students must bring the kit to all lessons and if they are unable to participate, they need to produce a medical note each week.

Are you back on the school run? Do you always switch off your engine whilst waiting?

Every year, air pollution causes up to 36,000 deaths in the UK.  The World Health Organisation and the UK government recognise that air pollution is the largest environmental health risk we face today with children especially vulnerable to the effects.  Air pollution has been linked to low birth weights, poor lung development and may even contribute to reduced IQ and mental health issues.

Sitting outside school with an engine running creates a polluted environment for your child and others to walk straight into. You may also be breaking the law and causing disturbance to local residents. Council officers in York are able to issue Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) for idling offences on the public highway.

We have recently received a complaint about idling engines in the local area, so please help us to keep our children safe by switching off your engine when waiting. Further information about idling is available on City of York Council’s website at: www.york.gov.uk/engineoff

A parent’s guide to TikTok

TikTok is incredibly popular with young people and the Wake Up Wednesday sent by National Online Safety during half term is a really useful guide for parents and carers so that they know everything they need to know about this addictive social media platform, and how to keep their children safe.

Read the guide here.

Wake Up Wednesday – Snapchat

Parents and carers will be aware from our last weekly email that we have significant concerns around students’ use of Snapchat. The guide sent to you on Friday 22 October is excellent, but we also wanted to share this guide from National Online Safety which further explains the concerns around Snapchat, and how parents and carers can keep their child(ren) safe if and when using this incredibly popular app.


#AskTheAwkward is a brand new resource from ThinkUKnow for parents and carers of secondary-aged children.

#AskTheAwkward aims to help parents and carers have regular conversations with their children about online relationships and more. The resource includes three short films created in a social experiment style, with real parents and their children to capture their reactions to a range of questions.

You can find lots of great information and guidance on the ThinkUKnow website.

Islamophobia Awareness Month

November is Islamophobia Awareness Month. Islam is the second biggest religion in England. We have been asked to share the attached poster with students and their families to increase understanding of Islam, Islamophobia and how to report a hate crime. These posters have been displayed around school and will be shared with students by their Form Tutors, but we also wanted to share it with you so that you can support us in sharing this message with your child(ren).

The MCC Foundation Hub is back in YORK for both boys and girls!

By joining a MCC Foundation Hub, you will get up to ten weeks of high-quality cricket coaching and have fun whilst being supported to reach your full potential on and off the cricket pitch.

To be eligible, you must:

  • be aged 11-15 (in school years 6-10)
  • attend a state school
  • not have played in a county team this summer

Girls’ hub
This will take place at St Peter’s School, York, YO30 6AB from January – April from 7:30-9:30pm. To register your daughter, please click here.

Boys’ hub
This will take place at St Peter’s School, York, YO30 6AB from January – April from 6.00-8.00pm. To register your son, please click here.

For more information on the programme, please email the HUB Manager, Mick Pickering E: Picko73@sky.com

Brilliant behaviour!

We are delighted to report the following behaviour for learning figures from last half term – they paint a brilliant picture!

We have been incredibly impressed with the way our students support one another, focus in the classroom and ultimately strive each and every single day to be the best that they can be. It’s been a pleasure to watch them enjoy all that Millthorpe has to offer once more and do this with a level of maturity, respect and resilience well beyond their years.

You’ll know that we introduced a behaviour and attitudes system from September 2021. In this system, students are given a ‘point’ for minor misdemeanors. Over the course of the seven-week half term, an incredible 819 students didn’t reach the 5 points threshold that would result in a detention. From this group 516 students recorded either zero or only one point.

This is incredibly impressive and says so much about the conduct of our students. During this same period we were able to give out 470 Golden Tickets for academic progress and students’ wider contribution both inside and outside of school. We expect this figure to rise even further as more extra curricular opportunities open up for our students to explore. We would love to be able to share with parents the total number of ‘Rs’ awarded but the computer is struggling to cope with such a large number!

We would like to thank you for the major part you play in helping Millthorpe School embed these new systems so that all students feel safe, enjoy the learning experience and can achieve their full potential.