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Hinchingbrooke School

Week B – Beginning 18th September 2017

A twinning trip to Hungary, the importance of failure and our fantastic winning debaters stand up and speak in front of 1900 delegates....

I couldn’t be prouder of our students.  Last week whilst at a meeting in London, our three national debating champions, Layla, Stefania and Craig stood up in front of 1900 delegates (mainly vice principals and headteachers) and spoke eloquently about their debating experience.  After being introduced by Geoff Barton all three spoke passionately, calmly and collectively about the virtues of debating and how much they had gained from the experience.  They received a rousing round of applause and couldn’t get out of the building for professionals stopping them to congratulate them on their amazing speeches.  Well done!

 ​As we settle into the new term new opportunities start to present themselves.  Of course all the new clubs are starting up, and I saw lots of very excited Year 7 students searching for the Creative Writing Club last week.  Great to see students taking advantage of the plethora of extra-curricular events taking place around the school site at all times of the day.  Some 21 Year 13 Biology students are off for their Biology fieldtrip this week.  They travel to Dale Fort in Pembrokeshire on Wednesday to complete vital work for the practical element of their course.  Also out this week are a lucky few representing the school at the Town Twinning Youth Art Festival in Hungary.  This lucky bunch travel out on Tuesday along with Mr Reed, and I have no doubt they will come back with many tales to tell and experiences gained.

A reminder that all homework is now set through Doddle for all year groups.  This does not necessarily mean that the actual homework needs to be completed on Doddle, just that an outline with due dates is recorded on this platform.  As parents you can log in and see what your son/daughter has been set and track as they complete the work.  Please contact Mrs J Moore ( if you have any issues getting onto Doddle.

This week there is also an Internet Safety Parents Evening on Thursday (21st) in the PAC from 18:30-20:00 for those of you interested.  Our young people spend every increasing amounts of time on the internet, and it is vital that we try to keep up with both the technology and more importantly how to keep them safe whilst online.  This evening is an information giving event which will help you to ensure they are safe and taking the necessary precautions.  It is amazing how quickly things change online and how vigilant we all need to be.  Students also receive guidance on internet safety though their ICT lessons and PSHCE.

A new literacy initiative has also started this year.  This week teachers will specifically be focusing on the use of capital letters and the spelling on common words.  Look out for these in students work and remind students at home to check these two key issues.

This weeks’ theme is centred on reminding students about the ONE school rule.  This is all about respect; respecting themselves, each other and the environment in our aim to creating well rounded, useful members of both our community and indeed the wider community.

As lessons start to really get going another key message we are trying to implant is the vital need for students to embrace failure.  I know it sounds a little strange, but students need to experience failure on a regular basis.  They need to know that it’s OK to get things wrong; that indeed this is part of the learning process.  More importantly they need to learn resilience; to pick themselves up, dust themselves off and try again.  I was fascinated to learn that when Dyson invented his first Dual Cyclone vacuum cleaner, which hit stores in 1993, he spent 15 years creating 5,126 versions that failed before he made one that worked. The payoff was a multi-billion dollar company known for its creativity and forward-thinking designs.  I’m not sure our initiative will reap the same rewards, but it’s a lifelong lesson which will stand our students in good stead!

   Frustration and failure fuel success!

…and on that note have a great week!

Anna Nightingale

Vice Principal