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Claires Court

Claires Court Maidenhead

from Nursery to Sixth Form

Weekly Words from Mrs Rogers

Every week the Bulletin newsletter is sent home from the School Office highlighting important forthcoming dates and events, along with a round-up by Mrs Rogers and the team about the week gone by.  Read below recent messages from the Head's desk.

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  • Head of Sixth Form Summer 7

    Published 14/06/19, by Kim Hall

    Sixth Former James has already begun accruing UCAS points! Following his impressive LAMDA 'Level 3 in Communication', with pieces entitled “Down in the coal mine”, “Poverty defines true wealth” and “ Soldier”, James was awarded the highest honour - a Distinction. He can be incredibly proud of this achievement and the added breadth of his offer to any university or employer which this qualification provides. 

    Year 12 students have been focused on their academic development throughout the year with regular exam and assessment 'checkpoints' punctuating each term, providing opportunities to master their subjects and invaluable feedback to ensure they continue to progress their knowledge and understanding. This week has seen them sitting summer internal exams which will form the basis of their predicted grades for UCAS, degree apprenticeships and employers. With so many ambitious and aspirational individuals in the year, targeting Oxbridge, Russell Group and mainstream universities, choosing to apply for vetmed, engineering, law and creative arts degrees, to name but a few, the next couple of weeks leading up to the end of this year have significance. Registering on UCAS, writing the first draft of their personal statement, considering degree apprenticeships and polishing CVs are key aspects of the Sixth Form FutureFocus during the final week of this term. What an exciting time in their lives!

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  • Head of Sixth Form Summer 6

    Published 07/06/19, by Kim Hall

    Sponsored Silence! What a marvellous way to raise money for the Gambia Project, a well used but brilliant idea Jacob in Year 12 had and which, strangely, staff and students were keen to support! It was a peaceful day in the Sixth Form and proved very profitable too with £118 now added to the funds the students are building up for their trip to Brufut in October.

    Our rowers have also had success, winning various races including the quad you can see in this week's photograph. James, Alec, Joe and Jake holding their winners medals and the well worn trophy which has been awarded to many other superb teams down the years. Congratulations to them and our other rowers who competed so impressively. 

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  • Head of Sixth Form Summer 5

    Published 24/05/19, by Kim Hall

    As this week's photograph demonstrates, our Year 13 BTEC students have a very demanding timetable! In fact, there have been rainy days on the lake too, but today they have been basking in glorious sunshine. The majority of the students have completed the multitude of assignments set and once final log book entries have been made they can consider their Level 3 BTEC Sport Extended Diploma done! It has been a pleasure to watch these remarkable young men and women master a variety of theoretical and practical skills over the past two years and to see them develop into mature young adults ready for University scholarships in the USA, the UK and in some cases, gap years and employment. Each one of them has contributed to Sixth Form sport, shown leadership and enriched the community as a whole - they have made a real difference. They move forward as confident, competent and personable individuals and I am certain they are going to be successful in the next phase of life.

    The rest of Year 13 continue to prepare for their exams, attending revision lessons and striving for those grades which will propel them onto the degree courses and employment opportunities they aspire to. No doubt they will appreciate the exam-free Half Term week in which they can focus on revision without the interruption of taking exams! Keep the tea and hobnobs coming! 

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  • Head of Sixth Form Summer 4

    Published 17/05/19, by Kim Hall

    “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” Poignant and timely words from Dr Seuss who certainly understands human nature and how to find the silver lining in every situation. As a 'glass half full' person myself, this phrase resonates with me as our Year 13 student's time in Sixth Form draws to a close. 

    We had a wonderful 'Leavers Celebration' last Friday, looking at photos of each of them from the distant past and more recent images too. For the first time in many years the students themselves created their own homage to Claires Court Sixth Form, putting together a montage of fond memories which prompted 'ooohs', 'aaahs' and raucous laughter for its duration. Their shy and retiring teachers (not!) produced a sequence of innovative and sincere farewells which included dramatic science experiments, tweeting, monologues and dancing! Behind every message was a sincere appreciation of each student's contribution to the life of the Sixth Form, the legacy they leave behind and recognition of the great promise and potential of each student. After some sage advice from myself including; looking for opportunities rather than waiting for them to fall in our lap; to be grateful every day and not to let a bad day define us - after all, we have lots of good days too!

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  • Head of Sixth Form Summer 3

    Published 09/05/19, by Kim Hall

    While so many schools are putting the squeeze on creative and performance based subjects, Claires Court continues to encourage students to develop and explore their myriad skills in arts based courses. Year 13 students have been focused on their A level exam work over the past few weeks and the standard and diversity of work produced is quite stunning.  Practical Drama and PE moderations are complete and Media coursework is a wrap! Photographers, artists and textiles students have brought their ideas to life in unique and original ways, with installations, canvases, stained glass, etchings, fabric, wood and paper. Later this term their work will be exhibited and I would encourage you to come and appreciate its variety and quality. 

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  • Head of Sixth Form Summer 2

    Published 03/05/19, by Kim Hall

    It's the time of year when I wake up in the middle of the night, in a cold sweat, wishing I had started my exam revision earlier! Thankfully, our students have been preparing sensibly and effectively for theirs which are now in full swing. It is their time to shine and 'show what they know' and I am sure they will not experience the same flashbacks I do in the years to come. 

    Our Y13 photographers have spent the past three days in exam conditions demonstrating their remarkable technical and creative skills, producing a variety of pieces of stunning quality. Oscar Akerman is one of those students and his recent entry into the Young Photographer Competition was awarded third prize. Congratulations to Oscar and also to Tom Hattam whose work merited first prize. I am immensely proud of them both and find their work inspiring as I am sure you will when you come to the exhibition later this term. 

    Other Y13s have been busy with A Level ICT and Language exams with Art and Textiles on the horizon, while Y12 Sports BTEC students have started external controlled assessments. There is an atmosphere of industry and focus in the Sixth Form Centre.

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  • Head of Sixth Form Summer 1

    Published 26/04/19, by Kim Hall

    Our Grand Quiz Final was a very exciting affair at the end of last term with Miss Bell's Year 13 Tutor Group dazzling everyone with the breadth and depth of their knowledge on all sorts of random categories. Did you know a hippopotamus has webbed feet?! It was a pleasure to award first prize to Sofia Volpe, Captain of her team. In fact what Sofia doesn't know about film and music is not worth knowing! 

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  • Head of Sixth Form Lent 11

    Published 29/03/19, by Kim Hall

    When you are absorbed in the work you are doing, time moves quickly and this term has certainly flown by, both for our focused students and dedicated teaching team. I'm not sure Usain Bolt could have kept pace! Looking back there is significant evidence of Year 12 and Year 13 aiming high, many achieving top grades in their mock exam series. Year 12s are beginning to identify university courses and apprenticeship opportunities which suit their interests, talents and skills while Year 13s have been confirming their firm and insurance university places and targeting apprenticeship and employment openings.

    The term is also punctuated with proof of increased self-belief as students impressed at Young Enterprise Trade Fairs, rowing in several Head of the River events, winning triathlons, performing in music concerts and the football 1st XI reaching the final of the SOCS Super 8 league pictured here. Our local charity, The Alexander Devine Children's Hospice and our global charity, the Gambia Project, have also been well supported, as have several PTA events at which students volunteered to help.

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  • Head of Sixth Form Lent 10

    Published 22/03/19, by Kim Hall

    On Monday, watching the Sixth Form charity netball match, I enjoyed one of my proudest moments as Head of Sixth Form. The boys’ team did not disappoint! After much bravado and confident pre match discussion about the rules of the game and the court positions, they donned the 1st VII netball dresses in true fancy dress style and began limbering up, ready for action. The girls opted for a multi football club and country kit, sporting the shirts of Italy, Chelsea and Manchester United (no agents present on transfer business). They spoke with knowledge and enthusiasm about how to play their own game and prevent the boys from making the most of their clear height advantage. 

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  • Head of Sixth Form Lent 9

    Published 15/03/19, by Kim Hall

    This week, much like every other week, I am brimming with pride at the diversity and quality of student activity inside and outside the classroom. On Monday our musicians and singers gave stunning performances at our annual evening concert, including stand out renditions of pieces on flute, piano, guitar, saxophone, voice and a variety of electric instruments too. 

    Our Gambia adventurers met on Tuesday to discuss the itinerary and fundraising options for their exciting trip to work on art and sport based activities as well as other ideas to support the literacy and numeracy programmes there. On Wednesday our sports men and women were scattered on pitches and courts county wide, competing in fiercely contested fixtures. The Year 12 students enjoyed the Higher Education Exhibition at Brunel University on Thursday, speaking to admissions tutors about the grades needed for the courses they are interested in and armed with prospectuses and a record number of freebies returned with increased motivation to succeed in their studies. And to round the week off we invited Helen Cole, our Careers Consultant, to talk to  students about the alternatives to university which include a myriad of apprenticeships at all levels including degree courses. Our days are always full of interesting and useful opportunities which give the students every chance to develop their personal qualities, transferable skills and optimise their future options. 

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  • Head of Sixth Form Lent 8

    Published 08/03/19, by Kim Hall

    National Careers Week and National Apprenticeship Week conveniently coincide and allow for added focus as we look to empower students choosing their next steps. In both Year 12 and Year 13, students are looking at the alternative routes to a degree and other level 3 & 4 qualifications which they can pursue at the end of Sixth Form. University remains the popular destination for most of our students but as the quality and number of apprenticeships improves, they are recognising the value and sense of considering this option seriously. To celebrate these initiatives we have welcomed both Charlotte Smith from Investment 2020 and also ASK Apprenticeships to meet our students and highlight the exciting 'earn while you learn' opportunities in the workplace. We have also tasked students with adding their future plans to a 'Careers Wall' which includes creative, sports based and science oriented jobs. This week the DfE have announced the introduction of a leaderboard to recognise and promote outstanding apprenticeship employers, which will only encourage employers to improve their offer further.

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  • Head of Sixth Form Lent 7

    Published 01/03/19, by Kim Hall

    The students who went on the Art and Psychology trip to Berlin were a credit to themselves and Claires Court. Here they are in front of the Brandenburg gate. The staff who led the trip commented on the engaging and interesting company the Year 12s and Year 13s proved to be and although the teachers (and probably students!) certainly needed to catch up on some sleep on their return they all thoroughly enjoyed the experience, including the East Side Gallery, an open-air gallery consisting of a series of murals painted directly on a 1316m long remnant of the Berlin Wall, located near the centre of Berlin. To the north of the city lies the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp where more than 100,000 Jews, communists, intellectuals, gypsies and homosexuals were killed by Nazis between 1936 and 1945. The students were able to witness the buildings which have been preserved in their original form and more importantly achieve a better understanding of social influence and conformity.

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