My time has been taken up with buying a minibus for KWS, meetings and visiting our new students at the junior schools.
On the Friday as we broke up for half term, several of the governors and I went up to the DfE for our ‘Ready to Open’ meeting. Not only was the DfE building eerily deserted, so it seemed was most of London. Thankfully the climate march added numbers to the infrastructure as they strode past parliament with lots of students on the march.
I was back there a few days later to take advantage of a rather unique experience, a visit to No10! Not a lone visitor, but part of a group of Headteachers and sponsors who are opening new schools this September and the following year. I have to say having swapped a few stories with others present, I reflected on the long journey to get to where we are today. I was just beginning to tingle with a feeling of self-righteousness when Theresa walked in, and if there’s anyone who has shown resilience ……….She spoke well. I resolved to stop being quite so sanctimonious, got a quick photo of myself outside the front door and scuttled back to the underground.
We have asked some catering companies to tender for the food offering at KWS. We aim to provide a healthy balanced choice of foods and to provide a service with a low environmental impact as we will focus on recycling, reducing food waste, no single use plastics and minimal food miles. We aim to provide a variety of foods to meet all dietary requirements. Oh, and the food needs to be tasty!
Slowly getting around schools to visit our students now that their SATS are over. I have to say that the schools and staff are very welcoming and the students are fantastic.
Our next events are a parents evening on 27th June at Roundwood (further details will be sent out shortly) and a single joiners evening for those students who are coming in ones or twos from junior school on 1st July at SJL.
Finally, the new website is up and we are slowly populating it with content so please have a good look through. If you spot any typos, don’t be shy in letting us know at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please click below to download the latest newsletter from Kier:
Things are moving so quickly, that I have been remiss and not written anything for a few weeks. So, let me make amends.
We have begun to visit schools to meet students joining us in September. It will take us a good few weeks to see everyone as our intake has reached our expected number of 180. It is a real delight to see the enthusiasm and engagement of students as they complete their SATs and look forward to transition to secondary school, the next step in their education journey.
Last week I spent a day with one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors from Ofsted as she looked at all our plans for opening in September. It was a really enjoyable day because I got to talk about all our values, our hopes and the passion of our staff, parents, students and the community to ensure this school supports everyone to exceed their own expectations. Kier allowed us to set up base in their committee room on site and you would be forgiven for thinking that the soundtrack of heavy machinery rumbling past thoroughly suited the discussion about developing students to thrive in a changing world.
When I’m not visiting schools to meet our first student intake, I’ve been appointing support staff. As I hoped, people of exceptional quality have been watching and patiently waiting to offer their considerable skills to drive our school forward. It’s been a delight to appoint a Chief Financial Officer, senior administrator, school administrator, receptionist and finance manager, all joining us between now and September. It has also been humbling to say no to some exceptional candidates, whom I sincerely hope remain interested in working with us as we grow. In the coming weeks we will advertise for teaching assistants, caretaker and cleaner.
We are working on a new version of the website which will go live in the next couple of weeks. It will have all our policies, curriculum, behaviour expectations, how we will handle students medical needs and much more. Alas, it won’t have photos of our students but we will remedy that in September.
On 27th June, we will hold a parents’ evening for our ‘founding’ parents, whose children join us from September. We will provide more information on our Camp Wilderness adventure, music lessons, how to purchase a Chromebook through the school (we hope to encourage every student to have one) and Katherine Warington School Transition Day on July 11th.
Finally, the building programme is running to schedule and Phase One is on track for hand over to us on 19thSeptember. Phase Two remains on track for completion in the summer of 2020.
Please click the link below to view the April Newsletter.
For parents who did not attend our Taster Day at the start of March, there is a meeting at 7pm on Thursday 4th April at Roundwood Park School in the canteen. It will cover details that are also on the website.
This is a repeat of the presentation delivered at the Taster Morning on Saturday 2nd March so if you attended this you do not need to attend.
Steel frame for the Sports Centre
It has been rather hectic since half-term when I accompanied some Yr12 students to Russia on a Roundwood Park trip. The students were an absolute credit to themselves and the school and a delight to share time with (I have to say that in case any of them managed to smuggle any photos of me on stage with a traditional Russian folk dancing troupe!).
In the last couple of weeks we have recruited more teaching staff as the new Heads of maths, English and science added to their departments. Our appointees are exceptionally talented and come with many additional skills in geography, history, drama, Mandarin, FA coaching, netball and hockey to name a few.
The Funding Agreement is now signed, ensuring that Katherine Warington School opens in September 2019 and National Offer Day saw all the available places allocated to local Year 6 students. The Continued Interest list will see two further recruitment runs as parents make their final decisions for the September intake. Further information regarding Continued Interest is available under the APPLICATIONS section of the website.
I met Terry Douris on the site of KWS for some promotional photos last week. Terry holds the Education portfolio for Hertfordshire County Council and has been a supporter of the project, recognising the need for local secondary school places. We were taken to the highest point of the 47 acre development in a 4×4. It was the kind of off-roading experience people pay good money for. The steel structure for the sports centre is already up, water attenuation pond dug and the student courtyard cut out in the centre of the school (this is where the outdoor table tennis tables, giant chess set, basketball hoops and picnic benches will be located).
Finally, we held our Taster Lesson morning on Saturday 2nd March when students and their parents met the new staff and got a feel for what we aim to achieve at the Katherine Warington School. It was a great event for me, being able to meet our students and introduce the teaching team – it’s a real milestone. I can’t wait to hold further events with the KWS parents so their voice is fully heard in our development. Click Here for photos.
Katherine Warington School
Lower Luton Road
Herts AL5 5FH