Principal’s Update – 8th July 2022

Dear Parents/Carers,

A bumper update this week as there have simply been so many things happening across the academy and beyond. Unusually I will keep my introduction short and sweet because the students really sell themselves and represent us remarkably well, as always, we are incredibly proud of them all particularly after a bumper week of positive reward points too.

Sports Leaders in action!

Congratulations to our sports leaders who were fantastic at the recent Colour Fun Run in Dunorlan Park, Tunbridge Wells. Around 300 primary school pupils were participating in 6 different runs around the park throughout the day.

Our leaders were involved in setting up the course, manning the colour stations, guiding the runners and leading them around the course.

Once again, they were a credit to the school and a key part of another successful sports event for schools within West Kent organised by the Tonbridge & West Kent Sports Partnership. Mr Beck and Mr Cornwell were impressed with their teamwork and leadership and we look forward to future events prior to the end of term. Well done!

Mascalls Sports Leaders lead a run at Dunorlan Park.
Mascalls Sports Leaders lead a run at Dunorlan Park.

Mascalls and Paddock Wood Primary at Super 8 Athletics

On Thursday both schools joined forces to experience and compete against other local schools at Tonbridge track. The event was aimed at linking year 6 and 7 students and promoting teamwork and athletic development. All students worked in a positive manner and excellent effort and technique was on display whilst using the great facilities at the Tonbridge track. This will shortly become a base for the Australian team in preparation for the Commonwealth Games!

Congratulations to all involved.

Primary pupils take part in a Primary Athletics Day at Tonbridge Track.

Steve Sallis Workshop

Last Friday, a small group of students took part in a very special workshop led by Steve Sallis. Steve is a renowned educator, coach, and author, and he delivered a powerful, motivating series of sessions on developing students’ mindsets. ‘Everyone sees the world through a different lens’, he taught students. ‘One of the biggest challenges is alignment with others’ view of the world’. Regaling the students with stories of his own successes and especially failures, Steve encouraged openness and honesty. The result was a positive, humorous, and life-affirming workshop from which students benefited enormously. Interested in finding out more? Details about Steve’s work are available at solutions mindset, and Steve has also spoken on the High-Performance Podcast, in an episode linked here. Steve will undoubtedly return to Mascalls for more workshops in the future, but it’s probably best to sum up their impact in the students’ own words:

I learned so much about how to change your mindset for the better and knowing that if you set yourself something you can achieve it. Teamwork is key instead of just focusing on yourself, help other people around you because it might help you out as well.

I feel more confident speaking in front of people and it pushed me out of my comfort zone. It was also good to have a person to relate to in everyday challenges. What I found most interesting was when he talked about what happened to him when he was growing up and how he failed his GCSEs but still overcame it and kept on trying until he succeeded.

The workshop was an amazing experience for me and I will now stick up for myself more as a result. It was a truly life changing event to meet someone who coaches the top people in the world.

A group of students are pictured participating in a motivational workshop run by Steve Sallis.
Some feedback for Mascalls students from Steve Sallis shared on his Facebook page following a session with them.

Budding Chefs amaze during Mock Examinations

Our Year 10 students this week have been cooking their way through their practical mocks examinations. The outcomes, as you can see from the photographs are remarkable and needless to say there has been a queue of staff waiting to try the dishes, which have gone down very well indeed. Congratulations to all of
Those students involved, so very impressive.

Some excellent meals cooked by Year 10 Mascalls students.
Some excellent meals cooked by Year 10 Mascalls students.
Some excellent meals cooked by Year 10 Mascalls students.

Spanish visits to Primary Schools

This term the Spanish department has been to visit both Paddock Wood Primary Academy and Horsmonden Primary Academy to share some Spanish language and culture with their Year 5 and Year 6 students. It has provided a great opportunity to not only strengthen our links with some of our primary feeder schools but also to immerse the KS2 students in Hispanic culture and the Spanish language. These sessions have allowed us to become more involved in the local community, creating links and building positive relationships with future Mascalls Academy students. Throughout all the sessions, the students have been extremely involved and engaged and we are very excited to welcome our new cohort of year 7s in September.

We have received some amazing feedback from our sessions. Here are just a few:

‘The children really enjoyed their lessons again last week and now keep greeting me around school with Hola rather than Bonjour!’ – PWPA

‘I have had so many positive comments from the students, and the staff were very complimentary too. The students are super excited that you’ll be coming back again!’ – PWPA

‘Just a quick note to say my daughter was in the Spanish session delivered at PW Primary Academy and where usually she comes home and goes “stuff” when I asked about her day she raved about the session today.’ – A parent of a student at PWPA

Year 11 Prom

A week after we said our farewell to our Year 13 students we did the same this week to our amazing year 11 students. At the end of the two year GCSE courses these students have seen considerable disruption but arrived at their final examinations the most focussed and prepared we have seen for a number of years. Their resilience has been incredible. The event went by so smoothly and students had a wonderful time. My thanks go to all of the staff involved in organising and decorating the venue and for putting in a very late shift until 1am and still arriving back promptly the following morning. We wish all of the students the best of luck for their results this summer and look forward to welcoming our largest ever cohort back to our sixth form in September.

A group of Year 11 students are pictured in their dresses and suits for the Year 11 Prom.
A large group of Year 11 students are pictured sat down for a meal at their Year 11 Prom.

Sports Day, 12th July – PE Kit please

A reminder that our sports day takes place on 12th July. All students will need to wear the academy PE kit, minus the additional hoodies that occasionally creep in on those occasions. Please also keep an eye on the weather forecast and provide sun cream in the event that the promised heatwave arrives.

Finally, my thanks go not just to the parents and carers but also the staff at Mascalls for putting on so many events. Much of the preparation for these events occurs outside of academy hours at the end of the day or even at home and requires a significant effort to ensure they run smoothly. Our staff show relentlessly that they go above and beyond to provide the best education, the best opportunities, the best experiences and sporting fixtures for our students. We are happy and proud to do so for our wonderful students and they always represent us so well.

Yours sincerely,

Mr W Monk