April 12th 2019

TAHS Weekly Newsletter.

Dates for your diary


29/04/2019 School Reopens


 Headteacher blog:

On Thursday of this week I attended the Uttoxeter Learning Trust Annual General Meeting.

At the meeting we were provided with a summary of our work over the past 2 years which I have copied for you below. Converting to become an academy has been a very smooth process for us at Thomas Alleyne’s. In addition to building closer links with all the middle schools and first schools to improve transition, we have also been successful in achieving over £2.5 million to improve the quality of our buildings. The money was much needed but would have been unlikely to have been secured if we had remained with the Local Authority.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your support this year and wish you a very happy Easter.

ULT CEO Annual Report for AGM 11.4.19 Anne Tapp.

What have we achieved?

ULT Membership and Growth

ULT Schools

The Uttoxeter Learning Trust was established as a multi-academy trust (MAT) on 1st April 2017 with 3 founder schools: Picknalls First School, Windsor Park CE Middle School and Thomas Alleyne’s High School. 3 more Uttoxeter schools converted to academy status and joined the ULT on 1st January 2018: All Saints CE First School (Church Leigh), Hutchinson Memorial CE First School (Checkley) and Oldfields Hall Middle School. Ryecroft CE Middle School then came on board on the 1st April 2018. These are our 7 full member schools.

We now offer associate membership for a 12-month period prior to fully joining the ULT. The Richard Clarke First School, Abbotts Bromley have joined the ULT as an associate member. We are in very positive discussions with a number of other potential schools in and around Uttoxeter. We are a sponsored multi academy trust and therefore could be asked to support an underperforming school/s in the future.

New Free School Presumption Application

The three full member first school headteachers have been working hard on the application for a new 150 place first school land west of Uttoxeter. The local authority have established the need for this school with the new housing developments around Uttoxeter. The headteachers have taken advice from the New Schools Network and are on track for the closing date of the 12th April. Successful shortlisted schools will be interviewed in June with a prospective opening of September 2020 for a Reception class only and will then build each year by a year group at a time.

External Reviews

Ofsted Inspections

No ULT schools have received an OFSTED inspection since the last AGM. As schools may receive an inspection between their second and third year of converting our three founder schools could receive an inspection from 1st April onwards.

Current OFSTED grades for the ULT schools are:

Thomas Alleyne’s High School – good

Windsor Park Middle CE (C) School – good

Oldfields Hall Middle School – good

Ryecroft Middle CE (C) School – good

Picknalls First School – good

All Saints CE (C) First School – good

Hutchinson Memorial CE (A) First School – outstanding

Richard Clarke First School – good

School Categorisation Outcomes

Each year Staffordshire LA categorise a school based on key performance indicators available including trends over the last 3 years for all and disadvantaged pupils. Currently we have a majority of schools that achieved the highest categorisation. (This included Thomas Alleyne’s High School) We are working closely with our schools that showed some concern which are all showing strong progress in their key areas.

School Performance Summer 2018

We are very proud of all our ULT schools and the efforts they go to in order to support children in all areas of education. We are able to celebrate the strong personal development of individuals, our broad and balanced curriculum and the wider opportunities provided by all. We focus closely on school performance and our flight paths monitor the outcomes for all individuals and groups. We have some very strong areas to celebrate across the Trust such as KS1 and KS4 outcomes, but we acknowledge that in some areas we need to improve further and this work is underway. Progress in schools own action plans demonstrate the impact being made and any underperformance when compared nationally is monitored closely. All ULT schools aim to be in the top 20% when compared nationally.

External review of governance

All full member schools completed an external review of Governance during Autumn term 2018. Each school has received it’s individual reports and have completed action plans in order to address any areas for development. The outcome of the reviews were extremely positive. They showed that all our local Governing Boards have outstanding features and the action plans will further develop improvements. The reviewer stated that all Governing Boards were very professional and fully embraced the process.

External safeguarding review

Roz Randall (Education Lead for Families First) has completed an external review of safeguarding in 5 of our 7 schools. All schools completed an initial NSPCC questionnaire then had a one to one session with Roz. Schools completed an action plan as a result of the work and actions being completed.

External Health and Safety Audits

All ULT schools currently buy into a service level agreement with Entrust and get very effective support with health and safety. Schools are expected to aim for at least a level 3, which means they are establishing and managing health and safety. Level 4 indicates a school is performing well concerning health and safety and level 5 schools are continually improving.

School Improvement (Teaching School)

Thomas Alleyne’s was successful in being appointed as a Teaching School. All of the ULT schools, plus other partner schools, are part of the Teaching School Alliance headed by TAHS and are funded to broker and provide school improvement and training, including initial teacher training. The Teaching School has appointed key central staff and are working extremely hard to develop its offer to local schools and the wider community.

School Improvement (Uttoxeter Pyramid)

We continue to work closely with the pyramid of Uttoxeter schools, whether or not they are part of the ULT, especially on training and transition. Heads have formed triads which enable them to visit partner schools, learn from them and provide external critiques of work.

Capital Projects – CIF (Condition Improvement Funding) bids

Successful CIF bids for 18/19 included TAHS (£900K and £1.5M) and WPMS (£2.1M). Thomas Alleyne’s has received a second capital investment of £370,000.

Headteachers’ Professional Board

ULT Headteachers continue to meet every 3 weeks to discuss leadership, management and pedagogical issues. They make recommendations to the ULT Board relating to teaching and learning and finance. They have excellent working relationships and are proactive and dynamic in driving improvement. The CEO chairs these meetings and the Board Chair often attends.

School Representation Board

ULT Chairs of Governors meet half-termly, supported by the Heads. Currently, the chair of Windsor Park Middle School chairs the meetings and the CEO and Board Chair attend and update all present. The group tackles a number of key areas and ensure that all Chairs of Governors are up to date with key information. It is an opportunity to feedback updates from Trustee meetings, and as they meet a week prior to Trustee meetings, it is an opportunity for chairs of local governing boards to feed up to the Trustees.

DFE Review of the Uttoxeter Learning Trust

The Chair of the Board, Julie Rudge and myself attended a meeting in Coventry on 27th March. This was the first review we have received and the agenda included:

Welcome and Introductions

School Performance and Improvement

People and Leadership

Governance Arrangements

Strategic Vision

Future Ideas for Growth (if applicable)


They asked many questions about our leadership, performance, finance, capacity etc and really tried to get to know us as a relatively new MAT. They seemed genuinely interested in our local issues.

It was a very positive meeting when concluded with the statement ‘The ULT are one of their stronger trusts.’ This was great to hear after everyone’s hard work and having been going only 2 years.



Our thought for the week for the first week back after Easter is:
“Positive mental health begins with me.”
Assemblies are being led by Heads of House and the NHS.


Year 13 now have just five full weeks until their A Level examinations begin, they should ensure that they have revision timetable or schedule which allows them to utilise their time efficiently over the Easter holidays.  It is key that students do not spend the two weeks breaking working extra shifts.  This is a short-term situation with long-term benefits and should be treated as such.  We have sent work home to students on Insight and from lessons so that they have sufficient resources to revise over Easter.


6th Form Parking Update

Tesco have very kindly agreed to allow our 6th form students to park for free on their car park.  There are certain conditions.  Students should park near to the recycling bins and not anywhere near the store as this area is for customers only.  Students need to be respectful of the general public and not play loud music, not speed and must be polite at all times.  If these conditions are not adhered to, we risk losing this privilege.

Bradley House car park is still available even closer to school at a cost of only £1 per day which could be divided within car shares.  Permits are available from Mrs Walton in the 6th form office.

We would like to thank both Bradley House and Tesco for supporting us and showing their community spirit.

Volunteer Opportunity

Uttoxeter Gateway Club as looking for Sixth Form volunteers to help at the club. This club is a registered charity and they have been running for 25 years. They support adults with learning disabilities and meet every Tuesday evening between 6.30pm – 8.30pm in the Guild Hall in Balance Street. They are looking for some volunteers who could help out on a regular basis with activities, the tuck shop, fund raising etc. Full training will be given for which volunteers will receive a certificate. Ideal for student/s looking to going in to medicine or any other caring professions.

Anyone interested in helping or would like further information, please see Mrs Walton.


School Lottery

Have you signed up yet for the chance to win BIG money and support your school?

Well what are you waiting for?


Play in A Day! 

Wednesday 10th April saw the first ever Drama department ‘Play in a Day’ project.
4 year 11 captains facilitated a cast of up to 20 students from years 9, 10 and 11 in a student lead drama project. This project asked year 11 captains to cast and direct Mary Wheeler’s play ‘Hard to Swallow’. A play based on the true story of a girl with anorexia.
On Thursday 11th, they showed the piece to an invited audience of 100 students.
The play was hard hitting in nature and inspiring in its commitment from students. Audience comments included “that was inspirational” and “I can’t believe they did that yesterday!” 
The Play in a Day project replaced the annual House drama competition, in order to allow students to participate in the performing arts and still commit to their academic studies.
I am so proud of them, and it constantly a pleasure to watch the talent we have in this school.


Supporting Your Child During Exam Time (Young Minds)

As we start to move towards exam season, Young Minds have launched advice for parents about supporting their children.

Tips include:

  • Encourage your child to take revision breaks and find a balance between studying and doing things they find enjoyable and relaxing.

  • Make sure they are eating and drinking at regular intervals.

  • Reassure them – reinforce that you are and will be proud of them no matter what happens.

  • Remain positive and hopeful!

  • Let them know their feelings are valid and normal, but also offer support and solutions where possible.

  • Anxiety is often worst at night and this means it is useful to encourage good bedtime routine

You can find out more here: https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/for-parents/parents-guide-to-support-a-z/parents-guide-to-support-exam-time/


Safeguarding advice for parents as your child takes examinations,


Year 9 Options

We have been unable to complete the options process for Easter, we have had to make some final changes to the options. We will be sending out letters notifying students of what subjects we can offer them in the first week back. Apologies for the delay and we appreciate your cooperation.

Geography Year 11 and Year 13

Revision for Year 11 will be taking place on Monday 15/04/19 in room 6A, 6B and 7 between 9 and 12am. During this time Miss Robinson, Mrs Goodwin and myself will be delivering 3 sessions that students can opt into in order to improve their exam knowledge and understanding. The 3 areas we will be focusing on;
1) Paper 1 with Miss Robinson
2) Paper 2 with Mrs Goodwin
3) Urban redevelopement and regeneration and Paper 3 with Mr Washbourne.
A drop in session for Year 13 will take place between 9 and 11am. This will be a 1-2-1 session for individual support on areas of development.


Well Done Aaron!

Congratulations to Aaron Gwynne who completed a swimathon in aid of Cancer Research. He successfully completed a 15k swimathon challenge (300 lengths over 3 sessions).

He also did his final 2 lengths in butterfly! Aaron so far has raised over £350, congratulations on an amazing achievement and a worthwhile cause.

Well done.



Intervention Timetable

The latest timetable for interventions and revision in linked below. Make sure you make the most of the opportunities that are presented to you.

Interven TT March19

The following is also on offer over the Easter holidays….

Easter Intervention


RS Examination 

The first RS exam in on Monday 13th May and to support revision further all students have been sent knowledge organisers on a page for each topic area.  These have been shared via Insight.  Please make use of these in short bursts of revision to top up you knowledge of key words and concepts. These will support all the other materials in your revision guide. Make you are ready!



ICT & Computer Science Exams

These exams, ICT and paper one CS are also on Monday 13th. All students have knowledge organisers for each topic area, numerous online resources shared via Insight, past papers and questions. Make sure you use these constructively over the Easter holiday to be properly prepared for your examinations.




French GCSE Intervention


Monday 15th April 10.00-12.00 in room 10. 




This week’s Science Students of the Week selected by Mrs Pavey are:

Year 9

Charlie Hallam and Erin Hough for consistent hard work in lessons. For Charlie specifically for his contributions to questions in lessons.

Year 10

Ryan Kenny – for his consistent resilience shown in lessons and good work.
Martha Murray – for her consistent progress and determination to succeed.

Year 11

Maria Loaring – for her positive approach to revision
Danielle Ashmore – for her ‘growth mindset’ attitude towards Physics; you’re doing great – well done!

This week’s Animal Care Students of the Week selected by Mrs North are:

Year 10

Spencer Reeves and Chloe Yates for all their work on stock duties with the sheep and lambs this week. Spencer did a fantastic job when he lambed one of the sheep on Monday morning.

Year 11

Kenzie Paterson and Sasikan Jaenprakhon for all their hard work in course work, achieving well above their target grades.

Well done!



News from PE

U16 Football

Sentinel Cup Semi-Final Tuesday 30th April at Foley FC 6.30 ko v Painsley.
Revision work will be posted on Insight each day over Easter. First exam is on May 15th.
U18 Rugby 7’s
Well done to our U18 Rugby team who reached the plate final of the Staffordshire rugby 7’s.

Art Exam Season

GCSE Art 10hours exam will take place on Wednesday 1st and Thursday 2nd May. A Level Art starts on Friday 3rd May and A Level photography starts Thursday 9th May, both 15 hours over 3 days.
We know that many students have been working really hard to devise interesting responses the exam boards theme. Make sure you are ready with any images printed off and equipment needed before they start. 
When the exam starts students must hand in all their prep work. 
Best wishes and good luck from the Art Staff. 

Elkes Achievement


Special mentions for Elkes students Sam Long and Lucy Shaw on their extra-curricular commitments (skating and race driving), showing us how best to balance work and life!


SEND Easter Fun

The SEND department had an Easter Party and egg hunt around the garden outside Keeling House.  All the students had a fantastic time and got handfuls of eggs to take home.  



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Thank you for taking the time to read our newsletter. If there are any changes you would like to see please let us know.




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