On the weekend of the 5th and 6th October, 35 brave and hardy Year 11 students successfully completed their Duke of Edinburgh Award Bronze expeditions.They showed exceptional navigating skills on the first day to get lost so often and yet still manage to get to the camp site at Kingsdown before nightfall! Day two was much better and a big thank you to the three assessors we had who worked tirelessly to support the students. Well done to all the students!
The 3rd October was National Poetry day and in the run up to the event, students took part in a National Poetry Day competition. This year’s theme was ‘Water’. Many students entered the competition and in the end it was a close call between 1st and 2nd place. I was incredibly impressed with the quality and originality of the poems that were entered. An extremely talented Tarren Brathwaite (from Year 11) was awarded first place with his poem “Safe place to cry” and gained 20 house points. In 2nd Place was Danielle Corner and third place was year 7, Jasmine Gibbons. Well done to all students for taking part!
Winner of the Y7 cross-curricular homework project in July was Mollie Edmead! Mollie won the ‘Key to KES’ which gave her a VIP day at the start of Y8, choosing any lessons she wanted, wearing non-uniform and having a free breakfast and lunch of her choice. Mollie visited lessons from Y13 Performing Arts, to Y10 Art and Design to Y7 Creative Design! Well done Mollie!
On Friday 27 September I was invited to the formal launch of Dementia Diaries. It is a book written by young people, primarily for young people but it is an informative read for all ages, to help them cope with a loved one who is suffering from dementia. The format is easy to read, it is funny and sad in places but it does show the challenges of caring for someone with dementia. There is also a YouTube clip called ‘The brain cell boogie’ to support the launch of the book. This book is available in all schools and libraries in Kent. One of our ex-students Raisa is a main contributor, giving her account of helping to care for someone who has dementia. Westgate is becoming a dementia friendly town. I was privileged to have been invited and it was fantastic to see an ex-student involved in such a worthwhile cause.
The visit was arranged to enable year 11 pupils to gather information and carry out research that will enable them to answer the three questions that make up their controlled assessment tasks. Each pupil was issued with a workbook that encouraged them to focus on the relevant features of the site. Pupils explored the following physical features of the site: the square stone keep, the forebuilding, the Roman Pharos, the Saxon church, the inner curtain wall, remains of the prehistoric fort, the medieval tunnels and main entrances to the site. This involved a great deal of walking up stairs and along steep tunnels. A few complaints of aching legs could be heard throughout the day. On the day of our visit we shared the site with members of a film crew who were preparing for filming scenes from ‘Into the woods’, starring Johnny Depp and Meryl Streep, the following day. This provided pupils with an extra interest for the day!