01 Dec

You may remember how we talked last year about a headteacher who described the children as being like bright colours that are woven into the fabric of the school. On Monday we were very sad to learn of the death of Thohura, one of our Year 10 pupils. Thohura was a much loved member of our Interactive Bases and her passing will leave New Bridge less bright. We will miss her greatly. Our thoughts and sympathies are with her family. Plans are now being made to create a Remembrance Garden, a special place where we can take time to think about the young people we have lost and celebrate our memories of them.

We held another extraordinary admissions meeting on Monday as next year’s intake looks to be growing each week. We are very proud of our school and its popularity is definitely spreading. Our Multi Academy Trust held Parents’ Evenings this week at all our schools, with the Learning Centre and Medtia welcoming families on Wednesday and the school site on Thursday. Parents’ Evenings are a wonderful opportunity to share with families the progress our young people are making and both events were really well attended. We would like to take this opportunity to thank our administration teams for preparing the packs and correspondence, and our Personal Care team for organising all the refreshments. Over 90 families attended the school site alone which is amazing support for our children, and we received some very positive feedback. If you have not had chance yet to let us know what you thought, please click here to complete our quick questionnaire.

Wednesday was a very busy day at the Learning Centre! Before Parents’ Evening, Michelle Lane, our Year 14 Pastoral Manager, held an extremely well attended talk about the transition from children’s to adult services. 15 parents and carers attended and those we spoke to afterwards really valued the session and even felt it would be useful to have a follow-up session as there was so much information to digest (something Michelle is not aware of yet!). Our next Parent/Carers group meeting is on Wednesday 10th January at 2pm at the Learning Centre, followed by a talk on Wednesday 24th January by Mrs Vleti from Touch Solicitors will be explaining legal matters such as Trust Funds, Power of Attorney and wills.

This week our curriculum focus is on two of our pathway groups, Digit4ll and Activ8..

On the IT pathway our pupils get to learn skills in a wide range of areas within multimedia and technical IT. The different units range from graphic design, web design, game design and video production. Pupils are undertaking a GCSE qualification and as part of this they have to research these different areas before planning and creating a product. This can be quite a challenge at times but, when it comes to the creative aspect, our pupils love learning. 

In Graphic Design pupils have been learning to use photo manipulation software ‘Serif Photo Plus’ to create a Sci-Fi landscape. Pupils had to learn how to work with layers of different images and crop, resize, and distort each graphic. Once they edited each image they started to use mask effects to create fading and gradient effects. Finally they used colour grading techniques to give other-world looks to their graphics. Take a look at Digit4ll1 as they are engrossed in their work! 

See some of the individual images they created and exported. They are all working so well and we can’t wait to see what other designs they create this year!

In Digit4ll with Mrs Dickson the Year 11s have been writing up their website projects, explaining in detail how they created their websites..

The Year 10 group have just started making a website advertising ‘EcoFest’. Having looked at what makes a good website, they have designed their own websites and are now creating their sites in Serif WebPlus..

In game design they have started making games in Scratch. They have made a Pong game and a racing game..

They had a lot of fun testing their games out..

Since our last update, Activ8 have been very busy. We took part once again in the One City Disability league at Manchester City’s stunning training complex. The lads enjoyed a competitive day with wins, draws and the occasional defeat thrown in..

You may remember that both groups in Activ8 have undertaken a little charity challenge the last few weeks in aid of Movember. Movember is a charity looking at health concerns in males, concentrating on prostate and testicular cancer and reducing male suicide rates. They had to complete a ‘mini-triathlon’ of 1k of running, 1k of cycling and 1k of rowing. We’re pleased to report that all of the guys completed the challenge (with a special guest appearance from our former head boy Jack Bayley) and we raised a total of £50 for the charity. Well done, guys..

The guys have continued to put in the graft on the rugby pitch too. Over the last few weeks we’ve looked at kicking the ball in various ways, including the Punt, Grubber and Bomb. We have also looked at how these kicks would be used in a game situation to gain field position or in an attempt to score points..

The boys have been working really hard in their Duke of Edinburgh’s lessons. They are developing their organisational skills weekly by ensuring they have the correct clothing for what has been a bitter couple of weeks weather-wise..

We have worked in a variety of locations including Ogden Reservoir where we worked on our map reading skills and Mossley, where we had loads of fun walking a trail that was like enduring a Tough Mudder course. All the pupils showed good teamwork supporting each other, especially when wellies got stuck in the mud..

Here we are racing towards Christmas! Letters have gone out regarding arrangements for the Christmas Showcase next week, an amazing opportunity to see your child performing pieces of Drama and Music they have studied in Performing Arts this term. It truly is a ‘showcase’ of your child’s curriculum. Unfortunately there are no longer tickets available but don’t worry if you weren’t able to reserve yours, the Digit4ll students from our IT pathway will once again be filming the performance and you can pre-order your own copy on DVD here.

On Wednesday 13th December we will be tucking in to our Christmas dinner wearing our best Christmas jumpers, followed at the school site by what appears to have now become our traditional New Bridge sponsored Santa Stroll! Letters have gone home to families with further details and you can also find out more here. At the Learning Centre our Student Council have agreed to raise funds through their Christmas Market on Friday 15th December. There will be a range of stalls selling festive items made by our Enterprise groups and bespoke items which can be ordered in time for Christmas from Digit4ll, our IT pathway..

The Christmas Market will be combined with a coffee morning and families will be receiving an invitation to join us at the Learning Centre from 10am to 12pm – we hope you will be able to pop in and see us!

The theme for our Learning Centre assembly on Friday was CHRISTMAS! We spoke about all the activities planned over the next few weeks, including our Super Learning Day based on ‘Christmas around the World’ which will be taking place on Monday 18th December. You may remember we mentioned a few weeks ago that our Learning Centre Student Council had agreed that, along with the national campaigns for Children in Need and Comic Relief, and raising funds for New Bridge through our very own Christmas Market, they would also like to support a cause closer to home, ‘Oldham Family Refuge’ which is part of the national ‘Touchstone’ organisation. Mrs Barbara Dignan will be coming to assembly next Friday to talk to students about her work collecting gifts for children and young people who may otherwise receive nothing and who may have left home quickly without the chance to bring anything with them, especially presents!. The charity would appreciate any gifts for all ages, from babies to 16 year olds, and all donations will go to families in crisis in Oldham.

When you are out Christmas shopping, if you could buy an extra, small gift (such as crayons, a colouring book, toy, book, game, makeup, toiletries, gloves, baseball caps etc.) our E-Base students will be taking the lead in wrapping and labelling. All donations of gifts (and any spare wrapping paper!) would be greatly appreciated and help families feel someone is thinking and caring about them over the festive period. If you are able to help, please could you send any donations or wrapping paper to reception at the Learning Centre over the next two weeks.

Last week Sam Jones came into New Bridge to take some pictures of our young people for the school calendars which will be going home to families at Christmas. The images are indeed delightful, here is a selection for you to enjoy:

On Friday Mrs Lamb welcomed our new Head of Site to the New Bridge School community and she is delighted to introduce Mr Gavin Lyons who will be taking over from her in January..

Mr Lyons will be a great asset to New Bridge and he will be able to bring in exciting new initiatives that will enhance the school. He is currently on the senior leadership team at Tor View in Haslingden. Mr Lyons spent Friday morning with Mrs Lamb and she was able to familiarise him with the pupils and staff as they made their way around the school.

The weather has turned cold and has bought its fair share of viruses and bugs. We work hard with infection control but please could we ask for your co-operation in ensuring your children are well enough to be in school and are not contagious.

We hope you have a lovely weekend,

Judith and Dawn

For news on our Key Stage 5 pathway groups at Medtia Square please click here

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