Letter from the Headteacher – May 2024

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Dear Parents and Carers,

I write to you to update you with some important information. This includes: a slight amendment we need to make to our mobile phone policy which will come into effect next half term; changes to our uniform policy, and to raise awareness of some proposals for the future of our uniform. I also need to make you aware of some concerning behaviours we have seen from a minority of students.


In schools we often have to respond to new trends and technologies, which can, if we are not careful negatively impact on the positive behaviours we need students to demonstrate in a school environment. We are noticing that more and more students are now starting to bring Air Pods and other Air Pod type headphones into school. I need to be clear that such devices are not allowed to be worn during the school day, anywhere on the school site. As these headphones are inextricably linked to mobile phone usage, any student found to be wearing them will be asked to hand over both the headphones and their mobile phone as per policy. Mr Whalley will be speaking to all students about our expectations, and we will start to enforce this after the Half Term Holiday. We are having to deal with incidents of students discreetly listening to music in lessons, and students holding conversations with staff and fellow students with at least one headphone still in. I am sure you would agree, this does not demonstrate the positive attitude to learning or the good manners that we would want to see from our students in school.


Summer Uniform 2024

We have made some changes to our summer uniform policy which has taken into account the views of our students. The summer uniform is allowed when we start to see a significant rise in temperature. We will write to parents to confirm when it goes live.

When we make the switch to summer uniform, girls will be able to wear plain black (no bows) knee length socks instead of the usual tights. If girls choose to wear knee length socks, they are expected to wear their dresses at an appropriate length.

Students should continue to wear their blazers, shirt and ties as normal in the summer months; however, should the weather become hot, we will take a common-sense approach and we will not expect students to wear blazers on extremely hot days. We will communicate this in the event of it happening.  We would also advise short sleeved shirts if possible. Ties must still be worn but top buttons can be loosened.

This year, at the request of students, we have made the decision to introduce black, tailored shorts as part of our summer uniform. These are unisex and are available from our suppliers. Sports shorts, cargo shorts or casual shorts are not allowed. Students will be allowed to wear the tailored shorts for school but must wear shoes, and smart black socks with the shorts.

Thinking Ahead – Uniform Changes for September 2025

We take our student feedback seriously and like to act upon concerns when it is viable to do so.  Student council feedback has told us that our girls do not like the dresses and that students would like jumpers back in the winter months.  We are aware that the pressure to wear skirts and dresses incorrectly (rolled up) has been difficult for some of our girls to navigate.  The short lengths of dresses can also pose a modesty problem which in turn can present safeguarding concerns both inside and outside of school.

As a result, we are going to remove these barriers and respond to student voice. From September 2025, we will be expecting all students to wear trousers for school.  We are not the only school in our region to be considering this step. I have been communicating with other Headteachers who are also making similar plans.

We are currently in communication with our suppliers in relation to jumpers and further updates about this will follow in due course.

Do you know where your children are in the evenings and at weekend?

As you are aware, your children are very fortunate to be the beneficiaries of several million pounds of public money that has been spent to provide them with a superb new school building and other additional facilities.  Unfortunately, over the weekend we have become aware of approximately 30 to 40 young people, many of whom we believe are students, who have been trespassing on the school site. We have found discarded cans of alcohol, evidence of drug taking and damage to school property. We are working with the police to identify the individuals involved and we will pursue charges of criminal damage when appropriate to do so. I must stress that we understand that this behaviour does not reflect the behaviour of the majority of students in our school; however, sadly, this is not the first time in recent months that I have had to raise an issue of this kind because once again, the actions of a minority are adversely impacting on the rest of the community. As parents can I please ask for your support by checking the whereabouts of your children in the evenings and at weekends, and to ensure that they are not involved in any anti-social behaviour and/or potentially criminal activity. If you are concerned about your child or their friendship group, please do not hesitate to contact us. As a community, we all have a responsibility to prevent behaviour of this kind.

Yours sincerely,

Mr P Davies