Weekly Update for Families – W/C Monday 13th October 2023

Dear Families

What a great first week back it has been! Our students have returned well and quickly got back into the swing of things, working hard and enjoying the great learning opportunities they have had this week. We’ve had some amazing expert sessions in and outside of school which continue to feed into current expedition work around student response to their guiding questions.

G30 – What do the communities of NE England owe to the miners?

Our year 7 students have worked with several experts this week. On Monday they worked with Alfie Joey who discussed how growing up in a mining community has coloured his life and what he thinks our communities owe to the miners. On Tuesday they worked with Mel and Geoff from our Comms team, respective experts in journalism and podcasting to prepare them for more interviewing members of the mining community. Students will take these stories and turn them into folksong.

On Thursday students went to St Mary’s Church, Heworth where they met with Reverend Lucy to learn more about the connection between the church and the Felling Pit Disaster and to see where they will carry out their presentation of learning in December.

G29 – What does it mean to be human?

This week Year 8 students carried out fieldwork at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Sheriff Hill. This fieldwork connected to the work students have been studying in STEAM sessions on gas exchange and circulatory  systems. Students enjoyed hands-on sessions  in the Respiratory Simulation Room and met the clinical lead for organ donation. They also got the chance to see the area where their final art product will be exhibited.

There has been some stunning artwork this week too from students, which will go towards the final product promoting organ donation in Gateshead Queen Elizabeth Hospital.


Climate Action Plan Launch

On Friday, all students met virtually with colleagues from SOS (Students Organising for Sustainability). SOS will be running workshops with all students across the year around their four foci:

  • Decarbonisation (Year 9)
  • Green careers (Year 9) 
  • Adaptation and resilience (Year 8)
  • Biodiversity (Year 7)

For example, soon Year 9 students will work on Energy Auditing our current building to determine how efficient it is, and make recommendations on their findings.

As a result of these workshops, a group of student leaders will develop a Climate Action Plan for our school. Students can apply to be part of this leadership group by clicking here. This will be shared with them through student notices too.

G29’s stunning Memory Lane Radio broadcast 

I think that the  biggest highlight of our week though must be our G29 radio  broadcast of unheard voices from WWI. This was played on Memory Lane Radio on Saturday 11th November at 11am as part of their Armistice Day programme. Listening to the beautiful voices and words of our students was simply stunning, their writing was powerful and really emotive. If you didn’t get the chance to tune in on Saturday, here is the recording:

I highly recommend you sit back and enjoy 30 minutes listening to their really important work. Well done to all students and staff involved in this piece of work.

Our week ahead 

G28 Student Led Conferences

This week and next, our Year 9 students will be presenting their SLC to families. 

PE sessions this week

Our PE sessions this week are as follows. Please ensure that your child has their  full PE kit.

  • All G30 students (Year 7) have PE on Monday this week.
  • All G29 students (Year 8) have PE on Wednesday this week.

For G28 students (Year 9)

  • G28 Class 1 students have PE on Thursday this week.
  • G28 Class 2 students have PE on Friday this week.

Extended Study and Clubs

There are some changes to our clubs this week due to SLCs (see the schedule below). We are really pleased to add a further two sports clubs on Wednesdays where we will be working with external providers.

If your child attends a sports club, they will need a full PE kit. For dance sessions, students can wear leggings, loose T-shirts and must be in socks or bare feet rather than trainers.

Remember, if a student attends an after school club or extended study session they must attend the full sessions until 4:30pm. 

As usual if you have any questions about your son or daughter please get in touch with your child’s Crew Leader in the first instance or email general enquiries to [email protected].

Julie Mosley


XP Gateshead