Half Term Update
10 February 2023
I would like to update you on a variety of school matters as we approach the February half-term holiday.
This week we have welcomed back Mrs Riley following her maternity leave. After half-term, she will resume the role of Head of Year 9. Mr Booth, who deputised in Mrs Riley’s absence, will assist in the handover of information in the week we come back after half-term.
In addition, you may well be aware that Miss Wilson has returned following a period of absence. To help facilitate this return, it has been agreed that Miss Wilson will not continue in her role as Head of Year 7 for the remainder of this year. Mrs Kelly has done a very good job covering for Miss Wilson, but after half-term she will return to her role as Pastoral Assistant. The position of Head of Year 7 will now be taken by Mr Booth.
Many of you will know Mrs Pilling, who has worked at St Mary’s for many years. She has now left us and decided to pursue a career away from the school. I would like to thank her for her years of service and I’m sure you would join me in wishing her well for the future. Her position of Assistant Headteacher has been advertised and an announcement will be made in due course.
Finally, the school is currently advertising for another Assistant Headteacher, to help secure a permanent replacement caused by the departure of Mrs Loftus last year.
I would like to give you advance notice that the last week of the next half-term (Monday 3 – Thursday 6 April) has been designated our Mission Week. Every number of years, we consider how our faith makes us unique as a school, and we work towards celebrating our distinctive Catholic ethos with a Mission Week.
During this week, pupils in all years will enjoy a series of talks and workshops, as well as regular lessons, which will centre on the key themes of Love, Peace and Forgiveness. Further details will follow after half-term.
FREE SCHOOL MEALS
We have once again been informed that funding has been allocated for the supply of Free School Meal vouchers for this half-term. Eligible families should have received either an email with the voucher, or it will have been sent in the post, depending on individual circumstances.
A reminder that jumpers remain a compulsory element of school uniform after half-term. This rule will remain in place until we break for the Easter holidays on Thursday, 6 April and applies to all year groups.
In addition, please can you ensure that when your child returns after half-term that their footwear and hairstyle (including length, colour and markings) match the school’s uniform expectations. Pupils can expect any breaches to be sanctioned in line with St Mary’s policy.
FUTURE STRIKE ACTION
You will be aware that the National Education Union (NEU) has announced its intention to call another strike of its members on Tuesday, 28 February. Once again, there will undoubtedly be further disruption to your child’s education on this day should the strike go ahead. As soon as the school is aware of the size of this disruption, I will write to you with final details. However, it is likely that any disruption will be on a similar scale to that faced earlier in this term.
Finally, I hope the forthcoming half-term holiday brings a well-deserved rest for all. We return on Monday, 20 February. Thank you for your continued support for the school, it is always very much appreciated.