Frequently asked questions
How long is the school day?
Tutor time starts every morning at 8.45am. We ask that all students are in school by 8.40am at the latest. School finishes at 3.00pm Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, at 3.50pm on Thursday due to our Enrichment session and 1.50pm on Friday.
Which way do I come into school?
The main pedestrian gate is situated at the front of school in Brook Street. Staff will be there to welcome you from 8.30am each morning. For your own safety, please do not walk through the larger vehicle gates into school.
Can I ride my bike to school?
You can ride your bike to school. Please come to the pedestrian gate and dismount. We have bike racks in the school car park. Please ensure you have a sturdy lock for your bike and if possible make sure it is security marked. Please wear a helmet.
How long are lessons?
Every lesson is one hour long. Our Enrichment session on Thursday afternoon is 50 minutes long.
How many lesson are there in a day?
On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday there are five lessons. On Thursday there are five lessons and Enrichment. On Friday there are four lessons.
How will I find my way around the school?
You will have been sent a map of the school to help you get familiar with where everything is located. All classrooms have numbers – no two rooms have the same number – and staff and older students will be more than happy to help you if you are unsure. Room numbers will be shown on your timetable and you will quickly get to know your way around. For the first few days, no one will be cross if you arrive a little late to lessons if you couldn’t find you way.
What lessons will I have?
You will have an exciting mix of many different subjects, some of which you will have studied at primary school, some you will not have done: English, Maths, Science, Art, History, Geography, Design and Technology (including Food Technology), PSHCE, Performing Arts, PE, ICT and Spanish.
How long is lunchtime?
Lunch is from 1.20pm – 2pm Monday to Thursday and 12.15pm – 12.50pm on a Friday. That is time enough to have something to eat (either a packed lunch or from the Restaurant) and to catch up with your friends. There may also be some lunchtime clubs you would like to attend. These could be for a particular sport, ICT/coding or just somewhere quiet where you can do some of your homework.
Can you play football at lunchtime?
Yes, our 3G pitch is open every lunchtime for students who want to play football. There are also basketball hoops and outdoor table tennis tables. Make sure you bring trainers with you and that you are not late to your lesson after lunch!
What kind of food is served in the canteen?
There is so much to choose from in the Restaurant. It is open in the morning for breakfast and open again at break (11.00am – 11.20am) for hot and cold snacks, cakes, pastries, baguettes, sandwiches, wraps, pasta pots, fruit and drinks. At lunchtime in addition to baguettes, sandwiches etc. there is also a choice of hot meals and a hot dessert. There is usually a roast dinner on Wednesdays and always fish and chips on Fridays! The canteen can and will cater for all dietary requirements.
How do I pay for my lunch?
We operate a cashless school. No cash or cheques can be used in school. Instead we operate a cashless system. Every student has a lunch card with their picture on. Your parents/carers will need to set up an account via The School Gateway and can top up your card with money. They can also check what you have been buying! To pay for your food, just present you card at the till and the value of your meal will be deducted from the balance on your card. If you are entitled to Free School Meals, you just need to present your card at the till. There is a daily limit of £X.XX. Your parents/carers can still put money on your card to allow you to buy extra items if you want to. Until the cards have been issued you will need to give you name to the staff on the tills.
Can I bring food into school?
You can bring a packed lunch if you wish. You can eat it in the Restaurant with your friends or outside on benches around the playground. We recommend that you bring a healthy snack with you as lunch is quite late. We do ask that students do not bring chewing gum, fizzy drinks and large quantities of sweets into school. There are plenty of bins around school – please use them for all your litter and recycling.
When do I find out who my tutor is?
We will be writing to you very soon with information about your tutor group. When you arrive with us you will have lots of opportunities to get to know your tutor really well. Don’t forget you will be seeing them every morning, so it won’t take long to get to know each other.
When do I find out who will be in my tutor group?
On July 2 we will be holding a virtual Meet the Tutor evening. Not only will you get the chance to meet your tutor, you will meet Mr Upton, Head of Year 7 & 8 and the other students in your tutor group.
What do I need to bring on my first day?
Please bring a pencil case with basic equipment (blue or black pens, pencils, ruler, sharpener, eraser etc), water bottle and trainers. Please ensure all items are named. You may want to bring a healthy snack to keep you going. Most importantly bring along bags of enthusiasm and a little bit of courage. There will be lots of people on hand to help make it a really great day!
Where do I go if I need help?
Ask any member of staff if you need help. Your tutor will see you first thing every day so they will be a really good person to ask if you are unsure about anything. Mr Upton (Head of Years 7 & 8) and Mrs Concannon (Student Manager, Years 7,8 & 9) will be around a lot too to help out. Staff on Reception will also be happy to help at any time, especially if you feel unwell.
How much homework will I get?
You should normally get two or three pieces of homework each night and these might take up to an hour in total. Homework will be published for parents and students via an online system called ‘Show My Homework’. Knowledge Organisers will be given to you which contain key information that you will need to learn and will often form the basis of your homework.
Where should I go if I lose something?
Lost property is usually taken to Reception. If the item has your name on it we will get it back to you as soon as we can. If it is not named that makes it much harder to reunite you with your things. If you have lost something please go and check with Reception. Also think about where you last had it - it may still be there. Make sure you have a safe place for your important things (phone, bus/rail pass, lunch card) and get into the habit of checking they are safe.
What clubs are there?
There are different sports clubs running throughout the year and teams you can sign up for. We will be able to give you more details when we see you. If sport isn’t your thing then there may be other clubs running that take your fancy, for example an ICT or Coding club at lunchtime.
What if I feel unwell when in school?
First tell the teacher or staff member you are with. They will send you to Reception to be checked by a First Aider. If you need to go home or be collected they will ring and make arrangements with your parents/carers. Please do not leave site without telling anyone.
I am worried about travelling to school on the bus/train on my own
Make sure over the Summer you find out exactly where and when you need to catch your bus or train. Maybe make a few practice journeys with your parents/carers or a friend. Is there anyone you know who will be travelling on the same bus/train? You could consider travelling together. Once you have joined us we will make sure we introduce you to boys who travel from the same area as you. Very soon there will be familiar faces to and from school each day.
What is Enrichment?
It is the chance to try new activities, make new friends across the year groups and meet different members of staff. Our activities include learning how to debate, watching films from around the world, learning first aid, tinkering with old electrical equipment to see how it works or understanding the world of the stock exchange! Our aim is that Enrichment provides you with a chance to challenge yourself, feel success, and be given the opportunity to find out more about your interests and passions, as well as discover new pursuits. You will get the chance to change activity three time a year.
Can I bring my mobile phone to school?
Mobile phones are allowed on site but should not be seen or heard in lessons. You can look at them at break and lunch to play if necessary. We take online safety very seriously. Young people need to understand how to use mobile devises and social media safely and the responsible and appropriate use of mobile phones in school is part of that process. If you need to contact home during the school day, please ask permission and you will be given the opportunity to do so. We ask that parents/carers ring school if a message needs to be passed to a student, so their learning is not disrupted by phones going off in lessons.
Are there lockers available?
We have lockers situated around the school site, which are available to be hired for a three year period. The charge for this is £15 and is paid online via our School Comms system. Replacement keys are charged at £3.