Principal's Christmas letter to parents


Mark-McKelviePrincipal's Christmas letter to parents 

Dear parent and carer,

It has been a very busy half term since the students returned in November and I wanted to take this opportunity to share some of the highlights with you.

In November we supported the BBC’s Children in Need charity. The students and staff put in a tremendous effort and we raised over £2000 and managed to get mentioned on the BBC broadcast later that evening as a result. Our Sixth Form students and staff raised a significant amount of money by providing a cafe service for staff during morning break. Despite high demand from all staff this is a temporary feature although it did make another appearance this week and raised over £200 for Martin House!

Earlier this term our students participated in the British Heart Foundations’ Restart a Heart initiative which provided the students involved with potentially life-saving first aid skills. The staff who trained the students commented on the level of maturity with which they all approached this topic.

Our Sixth Form students have also completed a Reader Matters course which allows the selected students to work with younger students to support their reading skills.

West Yorkshire Fire Service visited the school and gave an excellent talk and demonstration to our 6th Form students regarding driving and road safety. The demonstration included an enactment of the procedure that the Fire Service go through to extract people from a car involved in a road traffic accident and included cutting the roof off a car they had brought.

As you may have seen in the media we hosted an event at the end of November where the Harry Potter star Matt Lewis who played Neville Longbottom in all of the films visited the school and answered questions from our students and other students from local primary and secondary schools. The event was very successful and was covered by various local media companies and also First News which is a national newspaper for children and young people which has a weekly readership of over two million people. The photos which were sent out on Twitter have been retweeted all around the globe and like 578 times.

Leeds Rhinos have been working with our year 7 students to improve their rugby skills and the work that the students have put in has been highly praised by them.

Earlier this term we supported the national Anti-bullying week and also celebrated diversity across the school. Our school values include respect, integrity and compassion and I was extremely proud of how the students responded to this excellent initiative.

We have started a series of after school revision sessions for all Year 11 students which have been very well received and attendance has been good. The sessions focus on supporting students with their homework and are particularly focussed around exam questions. We are looking forward to building on the start they have made this term to ensure that they make good progress by Easter.

We held our second annual Science Christmas Lectures earlier this month. This event was extremely popular and involved three sets of our students presenting science lectures with a Christmas theme. The lectures were followed by a highly entertaining and informative show by a physicist who works at the CERN Large Hadron Collider.

Our annual Sixth Form awards evening took place earlier this week and we were delighted to welcome as our guest speaker former student Lewis McDowell who won the male Undergraduate of the Year award at a prestigious event in London hosted by BBC Newsreader Fiona Bruce earlier this year. 

We are holding a series of rewards events this week for all Year 7 -11 students who have had 100% attendance over recent weeks. The event is a cinema experience for the hundreds of students who achieved this by allowing them the afternoon off to watch a film in the main hall.

Our catering staff pulled out all the stops earlier this week to provide students and staff with a full Christmas meal, including festive tablecloths, crackers and a prize draw for hampers of sweets as a treat.

The students have worked extremely hard this term and this is reflected in the amount of merits which they are achieving each week. The student on average are achieving approximately 22,000 merit points per week. This is around 22 merits per student each week – as we only have 20 periods in our timetable you can see that students are regularly producing work which is of a high standard and being rewarded for it. This is an excellent achievement.

I would like to finish by mentioning our Year 7 students who have reached the end of their first term at Pudsey Grangefield School. Moving from primary to secondary school is always a big step in anyone’s life and I have been extremely impressed at the way our Year 7 students have settled in so quickly and demonstrated a mature attitude and determination which will stand them in good stead into the future.

If you would like more regular updates on news from the school, please sign up to our Twitter feed (@PudseyGS).

In an effort to avoid printing off over a thousand letters we want to trial alerting you to our letters via a text message with the link to the letter (which will be on our website) embedded into it.  We would welcome your feedback regarding this method of keeping you informed.

The school will be open as normal to all students on Wednesday 4th January 2017.

Finally I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your family a very merry Christmas from all of the staff here at Pudsey Grangefield School and to wish you all the very best for 2017.


Yours sincerely,



Download letter

Christmas letter to parents December 2016


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