Weekly Letter from the Headteacher

Friday 23rd February 2024


I hope everyone enjoyed a pleasant holiday last week and managed to have some rest and relaxation ready to embark on the second half of the academic year. Our Year 13 students have been taking mock examinations this week, always a tense time for them, but essential so that they can experience and practise work in the examination room environment in preparation for the summer. The learning from these exams will inform them and their teachers about what they need to do and work on in their studies in the last few months of their A Level courses. With many students receiving university offers, the motivation to get to where they want to in the future is encouraging in these last few months.  We wish them well.

On the website this week there are a few articles featuring events that I have mentioned before including:  Winter Poetry Competition and winners Mia in Year 7 and Usmi in Year 10 need to be congratulated, the Year 11 Geography Field Trip House Drama and a new article this term about Akshaya, a student in Year 10, who has qualified for the finals of the Berkshire Singer of the Year Competition. Well done to all the students involved in these activities.

There are lots more activities to look forward to this term.  On Friday 8th March it is International Women's Day 2024 which this year’s theme is #InspreInclsion. As I have mentioned before, this year our focus is on women we know who have inspired us, for example, our mothers, grandmothers, aunties, sisters, people who have been or are role models in our lives. Several students and some staff have sent in photos and information about a person they wish to nominate, and it has been wonderful reading these profiles of women our students and staff appreciate and acknowledge as having had a great influence on their life. I look forward to sharing these with you in due course.

The Kendrick Society (KPS) Spring Raffle is being launched next week and our fund-raising focus this year is to raise £8k to improve athletics facilities for our students in KS3 and 4. As always, a lot of preparation and work has gone into planning this event and I really hope parents will respond to this opportunity to support the school. Hosted by KPS this week was another Drop- in with me for parents of Year 9. Altogether 22 parents joined the call and amongst other things, there was some discussion about the options process that our Year 9 students will be embarking on next week. The Options Evening for parents is next Wednesday 28/2, with a Parent Consultation event following a couple of weeks later. This is a key time for Year 9 students who will begin to make some decisions about subjects they want to study at GCSE. The curriculum choices for all students at Kendrick does not allow for bad or wrong choice to be made, so parents should be encouraged that whatever subjects their child chooses at GCSE they will have an excellent foundation for future qualifications and career plans. There was a question around the return to face-to-face parent/teacher consultations. My response to this question was that I do not see this format returning for the foreseeable future for very many good reasons. Besides the difficulties of getting to Kendrick in the afternoons/early evening, parking and general environmental factors, the gathering of so many people in one space where appointments never stick to the timings, where people’s special needs (students, staff, and parents) require special adjustments and many other factors, plus the impact of such live events on teachers’ workload mean that the arguments for live parent/teacher consultations are diminishing. We have information events for all cohorts across the school where parents are invited into school and meet teachers and we also are very responsive to email, phone and face to face communications with parents as required and necessary.

Other extra-curricular events this term include fund raising for Comic Relief activities in the week of 11th March and then on Thursday 21st March it is the annual Air Ambulance Concert which once again will be held at Kendrick. Details will be sent to everyone next week and tickets will be on sale on ParentPay soon. If you wish to donate to the Thames Valley Air Ambulance in advance of the concert the link is here. https://www.tvairambulance.org.uk/

Finally, I have now spoken to all students across the school about the Bursaries and Grants. Two out of the three grants are available to students from Year 7 -13, and I encourage everyone to read the details in the link. The deadline for applications is Friday 10th May 2024. These grants are available to students every year.  

Please read the rest of the update for more very useful information.

Wishing everyone a pleasant weekend.

Ms Christine Kattirtzi

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