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Head of School Letter 26th Feb 202426/02/2024

Dear Parents/Carers,

We’re back into the swing of school life, after the half-term holiday - so much happens during the school week! This half-term is a really important one for our Year 11 and 13 students (and those in Year 10 and 12 taking public exams this year) as they begin the final preparations before the summer exams. Assemblies last week focused on the reasons why students come to school, and the importance of following rules to ensure all students are well prepared to succeed in their aspirations, whatever they may be. The expansion plans are continuing, with weekly meetings being held between the school, Local Authority and the construction company to ensure disruption is kept to a minimum - including and especially during our summer exam season. When we have a confirmed start date for the work, I’ll let you know. 

Vaping and contaminated vapes

All Headteachers in Bucks have been contacted this week by the Local Authority to highlight the Public Health team’s concerns around contaminated vapes.  A separate letter has been sent to all families today regarding this very concerning matter; below is a summary. 

There have been a number of reports of vape liquids & pens containing very strong synthetic cannabinoids ‘spice’ which are likely being sold as THC vapes. These are causing unintended effects on those who use them. THC vapes are illegal in the UK. 

Here4YOUth, Buckinghamshire - Cranstoun a Buckinghamshire commissioned young people drug/alcohol harm reduction service has prepared a harm reduction information Drug Alert - Contaminated Vapes - Cranstoun about contaminated vapes that I would encourage every family to read and discuss as you feel age-appropriately with your child. 


As part of our assemblies last week, all year groups have been reminded that a student could face being permanently excluded for possessing, supplying or being under the influence of an illegal drug whilst on the school site. If you have any concerns about your own child or their peers, please contact our Designated Safeguarding Lead, Mrs Hankin. 


Happy Birthday Mr Bonser!

You may have seen a post on Social Media, celebrating Mr Bonser’s 65th birthday. Mr Bonser has taught Design Technology at The Cottesloe School for 41 years! He had a wonderful time on his birthday; the celebrations continued on Friday with cake and birthday wishes from colleagues and students.  


Headteacher’s Awards

One of the lovely bits of my role as Head of School means I get to recognise and celebrate student success via the Gold Thumbs Up badges, or Headteacher’s Awards. Although there are no specific criteria for a student to achieve a Gold Thumbs Up badge, it is always because they have gone over and above expectations, demonstrating either the 6Cs or an aspect of Healthy Relationships. The recipients of the Award this month include Kurtis in Year 7 for the confident way he spoke to all of Year 7 about his experiences with a hearing impairment during the Sign to Sing performance; Olive in Year 9 for her outstanding running in the county Cross Country Championships, and Sebastian in Year 8 for his fantastic description of what it means to be resilient during the year group assembly last week. 

Sports Fixtures The weather affected more fixtures this week but it was a great week for sport. U13 and U15 boys’ and girls’ badminton teams took on Buckingham School in a league match. The boys won 7-0 and the girls won 4-3; a brilliant result, well done to all the players. Four boys’ football matches were played against Waddesdon, with Team Cottesloe winning them all! Year 7 won 3-1, Year 11 won 6-1, Year 9 won 7-1. Year 8 played away, on Waddesdon’s astro pitch. Despite the home team having the advantage of being more familiar with the faster pace of the artificial grass, the Cottesloe Year 8 team won convincingly, with 10 goals getting past the Waddesdon keeper. In reply, Waddesdon scored just one goal. Super results, boys!  Year 7 girls won their netball match against Kingsbrook 9-4, well done to the team! Unfortunately, the U18s boys football team will go no further in the County Cup, having lost in the Quarter Final 6-1 to John Hampden, away. This week, we’re hopeful more outdoor fixtures will be able to go ahead, including football games, netball matches and two indoor cricket tournaments. 

Years 12 and 13

Mock Exams continue this week; keep going, everyone! 

Year 11

Mock 2 Results will be shared with students on Tuesday morning during their PSHCE lesson. As with Mock 1 results, the format will be the same as the actual Results Day on Thursday 22nd August 2024, to give students another opportunity to experience what it feels like to receive the piece of paper with their grades on it. We know that rehearsing every aspect of the exams process can help students feel more prepared for the most successful outcome. 

Year 8 

The Choices Process launched last week with further information available on our website: KS3 Choices within The Cottesloe School Curriculum. Tomorrow, Year 8 Parents Evening provide additional information to help inform decisions. 

Wishing you another good week, thank you for your continued support.  

Best wishes, 

Louise Baldwin

Head of School

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