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Week 29

Friday 21st April 2023

Hello Everyone!

Welcome back to Term 3!. I hope you all had a lovely relaxing and happy Easter with your family. The weather wasn’t great but at least the school Term has begun with lovely sunshine - it is so refreshing.

Last minute preparations have arrived for exams and Years 11 -14 received very helpful tips and guidance for exam preparations and revision during their Assemblies this week. Whilst students should be studying as much as possible now, they also need to look after themselves – get plenty of sleep, space out the studying, eat healthily and do that detox with social media!. Well done to the PE and Music GCSE Students whose practical work was assessed today. I would be confident that these students will have been well-guided by their teachers and will do themselves proud.

I referred to funding cuts in a previous Blog and sadly it continues - with Extended Schools Funding being cut at the end of June. This is a devastating loss – no more pupil support, mental health programmes, family support initiatives, after school clubs and so on – such an impact this will have on our young people both academically and emotionally. Where will it end?

There were lots of sporting activities this week – Year 8 Netball, Year 8 Boys football, Golf Tournament, U14 Girls Football who played extremely well but lost by a point for the Qualifiers, and skills development with Year 13 Sports Studies students and our Primary pupils in a range of coaching sessions. It’s great that so many students are involved in these activities and let’s not forget their teachers who give up so much personal time re coaching etc. Well done Everyone!

Congratulations to Years 11 and 12 who received very favourable GCSE Science Modular Exam Results yesterday in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. For Year 11, this was their 1st set of Exam results and they certainly have ‘banked’ good grades. Well done Everyone including your teachers – a lot of hard work undertaken by all.

A number of our Year 8/9 pupils and many of our Primary Schools listened with great interest to Gopher Lab discussing biodiversity, sustainability, eco systems etc as part of the STEM Enthuse Project yesterday. This is a fantastic project enabling our STEM Ambassadors to deliver the training themselves to our Primary pupils – taking ownership of the learning and increasing their confidence.

The best news this week was that the appointed contractor had started Health & Safety work on the pitch site in anticipation of the new school build commencing on 2 May 2023! What a long and difficult wait we have had to get this date – and to get started. It’s over 20 years ago that the need for a new school was discussed! But here we are at last – ready for our young people to enjoy ‘state of the art’ facilities and with resources, which staff will be completely in awe with – to deliver the best education possible and transform Catholic education in the Cookstown area. Exciting times ahead!

PS Don’t forget it’s a Staff Development Day on Monday 24th. Pupils do not attend on this day.

Have a great weekend

Isabel Russell

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