It's hard to believe that another school year is drawing to a close, with so much going on at Salesian the time always seems to fly by! Thank you to all of those who have supported the various end of term events that have taken place over the last two weeks, particularly the production of Joseph and our Creativity Festival both of which were excellent. Congratulations to all those who have been nominated for prizes at our annual Awards Evening this week. I am sorry that I wasn't there to present the prizes but I am currently on paternity leave following the recent birth of our son, Joseph – no, he wasn't named in honour of the musical! Please do look out for our Summer News Digest, now available, which will give you a flavour of some of the many other wonderful things that have been happening this term.
Quite apart from all those things that have been going on beyond the curriculum this year, our dedicated teachers and support staff have continued to work incredibly hard to ensure that the children benefit from the very best teaching and pastoral care. This has been particularly challenging this year with the introduction of new GCSEs and A' levels and I would like to pay tribute to our teachers for the manner in which they have set about rising to this challenge. Whilst in many schools these changes have caused chaos, at Salesian we are confident that our students have not been adversely affected due to the professional diligence and positive attitude of our staff; we are truly blessed to have such great teachers.
Having said what a great staff body we have, at the end of each year we inevitably have to say farewell to a number of them. This summer two long serving members of staff, both of whom are former students of the school are retiring; Adrienne Rickard joined the staff in 2000 and went on to become Head of Modern Languages. An exceedingly popular teacher and colleague, we are grateful to her for everything she has done to raise standards in the department and organise student trips to the continent. Carmel Barrett has taught Catering at the school for the last 14 years and been one of our most successful teachers, the quality of the work that students produce, the grades they achieve and the dishes they create are all quite exceptional and all this has only been possible as a result of Mrs Barrett's excellent work.
Conor Delaney first joined the school in 2007 and has headed up the teaching of Italian here since. Mr Delaney is taking a break from teaching but will be remembered fondly for his great teaching, results and participation in extra-curricular activities, particularly with guitar in hand! Chris Ball has taught P.E., and made an impressive contribution to the extra-curricular and spiritual life at Salesian for the last 10 years. Mr Ball will be missed but only down the road as he has been promoted to lead P.E. and Christian Ethos at Chertsey High School. We offer our congratulations to Matthew Goulborn who has been promoted to Assistant Headteacher at George Abbot School in Guildford. Mr Goulborn joined the History Department in 2010 and went on to become Head of Year, he has also made a huge contribution to the extra-curricular life of the school during this time which has been greatly appreciated.
Congratulations also to Laura Ridley who also joined the school in 2010 and has been promoted to Assistant Headteacher at Chertsey High School. Mrs Ridley has taught in the DT Department, gone onto head up Textiles, and become a Head of Year. As Head of Year 11 this year, we are looking forward to all her hard work being rewarded with some excellent GCSE results. Chris Howell joins Mrs Ridley on the Leadership Team at Chertsey High. Mr Howell joined the Languages Department in 2012 and as Head of Spanish has helped students get great results and enjoy some memorable trips abroad. Amy Jenkins joined the Music Department in 2011 and has been responsible for an array of musical performances, events and initiatives including "Battle of the Bands", and our boys' choir. We wish Miss Jenkins every success in her new role as a Primary Music Coordinator.
We are particularly sorry to be losing a number of excellent young staff who are relocating to different parts of the country (or beyond) due to family commitments; Amy Grattidge in R.E. and Zena Kekkouri in Maths as well as Patrick Ryan in Science and Karen O' Carroll and Anthony Gallagher in R.E. who are all returning to Ireland. Whilst these teachers have only been with us a short while, they have all made a great contribution to the school so we're sorry not to be able to keep them for a little longer. We offer our congratulations to the following staff on their appointments: David Fullbrook who is joining St. Paul's in Sunbury as Head of Business, Geraldine McKenna who is joining Hoe Valley School in Woking, Jen Hosford who is moving to Papplewick in Ascot and Anne-Marie Thornton who is taking up a special needs teaching post at Freemantles in Woking. We also bid farewell to Hannah Clark in Drama and Beth McHugh in Geography who have both completed temporary contracts at the school.
Each year we take on a number of Teaching Assistants who spend the year with us gaining school experience as part of their first degree or as a prelude to teacher training. We have had a particularly good bunch this year and we wish them all the best with the next steps in their learning. They are Kirstie Hamberger, Rosie Wood, Matt Smith, Ed Brewer and David Grant.
Finally, many of you will be aware of the excellent work Andrew Clarke our Deputy Headteacher has done at the school over the last 3 years. Mr Clarke currently commutes from the south coast to Salesian every day, which is not sustainable in the long term, and we have therefore agreed a secondment for him to St. Philip Howard, a Catholic School near to him in West Sussex. Mr Clarke's general presence, great Science teaching and good humour will all be sorely missed but we are delighted that he will be continuing his vocation within the Diocese.
We will also be without the following wonderful teachers for part of next year as they will be taking maternity leave; Cris Mourelle (whose daughter Victoria has already arrived), Sabrina Lalli (whose son James was born just a few days ago), Emily O'Farrell, Claire Ferguson and Domanique Bridglalsingh. We are always excited about a new baby at Salesian and we shall be keeping these staff and their families very much in our prayers.
Congratulations to the following staff on their internal promotions; Lizzie Ingram and Paul Bryce who have been appointed Deputy Headteachers, Ben McCann and Josie Haworth who have been promoted to Assistant Headteachers. Emily Rawlins who will be Head of Geography and Carly Griffin on becoming Head of Business & Economics. Rosie Lydon who will be 2nd in Maths and Pippa Hunt, 2nd in Geography.
Congratulations also to Emma Fitzpatrick in English, Hannah Thompson in Maths, Tom Corry in Science and Pina Fagent in History all of whom have been appointed as Subject Leaders at Chertsey High School but will continue to teach part-time at Salesian. Amy Jackson becomes Key Stage 3 English Coordinator; Jon Hicks is Assistant Head of Year 8; Adam Smith, Assistant Head of Year 10; Andy Carr, Assistant Head of Years 12 & 13; April Poulter, Head of House and Nat O'Brien and Matt Tunmore, Assistant D of E Coordinators.
Of course, one of the great strengths of the school is that we have a track record of attracting excellent new staff to join us each year. Once again, we have worked exceedingly hard since January to ensure that the school continues to be fully staffed with the best practitioners and I am delighted to introduce another great group who will be starting with us in September. They are, Paul Gower, Deputy Headteacher; Clare Forman, Deputy Head of Sixth Form; Rebecca Horridge, Head of English; Inma Alvarez, Head of Spanish; James Greggor, Head of Year 9; Rosana Long, Head of Year 8; Katie Hibbins-Durkin, 2nd in RE; Fr. Kevin O'Donnell SDB, RE & Chaplaincy; Alexandra Alessi in Textiles; Katie Murphy in Food Technology; William Hough in Science; Sophie Ross in Geography; Amy Hunter in Languages and Niamh Qualter in English.
We also have a number of newly qualified teachers, most of who have already been with us this year for their initial teacher training. They are, Alice Peterkin in Maths, Sara Nelson in Geography, Darcey Wynter in Music, Norah McKeogh in Art, Hannah O'Neill in History, Ashley Pascoe in DT, James Roberts in RE, Kiran Kandola in Science and Izaro Andres & Amandine Vardapin in MFL. Our new group of trainee teachers for next year are mainly former students, interns and Teaching Assistants; Laura Butcher and Angela Willoughby in Maths; Andrew Bamford in Science; Gail Larsen in Geography; Jon Batt in DT; Jordan Cella in Drama; George Moore in PE and Phillip Bond in Business.
Finally our new members of support staff are, Mark Isaia, Premises Assistant; Charlotte Greenwood and Deborah Maltby, Teaching Assistants; James Griffin, Maths Intern; Rhiannon Connop, Science Intern and Lisa O'Brien Sports Coach & Cover Teacher.
We look forward to welcoming all these new staff to our Salesian community and to the great work they will no doubt undertake with and for the students.
We employ almost 200 people across the school and college and, as you can see from the above, recruiting the best possible people to continue the great work that goes on here is in itself a significant undertaking. If you or anyone you know are interested in a career at Salesian then please don't hesitate to contact us to find out about opportunities that may not yet have been advertised; we are always happy to meet good people who may have something to contribute. If you would like to find out more about training to teach then please contact Jo Hawkins firstname.lastname@example.org or go to the website www.teachsoutheast.co.uk . If you are already a qualified teacher or are interested in a support staff role then please contact Pippa Carr email@example.com .
As part of our continuing drive to improve facilities at the school we are delighted to report that work on the new classroom block at Guildford Road has now started. We look forward to spreading out into the building, which will give us 12 additional classrooms, when it is completed in the new year. We are also putting in additional rooms at Highfield Road to meet the needs of our expanding Sixth Form College; as the college's reputation for excellence continues to grow so do the number of external applicants. As reported in our last newsletter, we are currently in the process of bidding to build a new Sports Hall at Guildford Road. We are hoping to persuade the English Cricket Board and Sport England to support the establishment of a centre for excellence for cricket at the school but we would be pleased to hear from any local sporting club or organisation who would be interested in exploring a joint venture. Continuing on the sporting theme, we are hoping to make an exciting announcement about the development of new playing fields at Guildford Road next term – watch this space!
These are definitely trying times in education, quite apart from the challenges of recruitment in the South East and the ongoing, centrally enforced changes to curriculum and assessment we are also having to deal with significant real terms cuts to school funding. Needless to say, we are determined that this won't stop us providing children at Salesian with a first-class education but it is becoming increasingly difficult to keep providing all the extras that requires. We aim to ensure that our children enjoy the same experience with us as they could expect at an independent school but whilst the average fees for private education are approximately £14,000 per annum, we only receive a little over £4,500 for each child every year. This just goes to show what effective and efficient operations most state schools run!
There are two things you can do to support us in this. The first is to sign up to our parental contribution scheme. We have over 800 families with children at Salesian but only a minority are currently signed up. We appreciate that these are tough economic times for all and some families definitely can't afford it but there are plenty who can (particularly those who would pay for private education if Salesian didn't make such good provision). If every family contributed £1 a day for each child, we'd be able to do amazing things! Our Business Manager, Ceri Murray recently wrote to all families about the scheme, please contact her directly, firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to sign up or review the amount you donate. The second thing you can do costs nothing and that is to email your MP and urge them to support an increase in school funding. Given the fact that the Chancellor of the Exchequer is the MP for the constituency that many of you live in, it would be well worth getting in touch!
The last thing I would ask for your support with is the Salesian parents' association, Friends of Salesian. We are truly grateful for the good work that current members do in building community, raising funds and giving us feedback about how well we are doing at Salesian. However, we are always looking for new members who will help us to improve on what we do. If you feel that you could contribute to this, even on an ad hoc basis, then please contact Pippa Carr, email@example.com.
As always, I would like to thank you all for everything you do to contribute to the education of the children and the success of the school; the positive, enthusiastic and supportive approach of the vast majority of our families is a key factor in making the school everything that it is and on behalf of everyone at Salesian I would like to thank you for giving us that again over the course of the last year.
Wishing you all and your families a very happy and restful summer holiday.
God bless you,
Download the Summer Message.