Two items of news stood out to me last week. The first was The Queen’s message referring to and encouraging simple recipes such as “speaking well of each other and respecting different points of view; coming together to seek out the common ground; and never losing sight of the bigger picture”. The second was the very worrying report that five per cent of UK adults do not believe the Holocaust took place and one in 12 believe its scale has been exaggerated. At Willink we do take seriously our role in educating about the past and projecting values of respect, tolerance and equality. Last week we commemorated Holocaust Memorial Day with Year 9 participating in a streamed national presentation on the Holocaust. We also, building our international credentials, hosted all week a group of students from the Admiral Farragut Academy, Tianjin, China. Students and staff together learnt about each other’s customs, language and cuisine. Our present plan is to visit China again at Easter 2020.
In all the Brexit news you may have missed last week’s publication of school performance tables. You can access this information direct from the Department of Education website or via our website – please look up DfE Performance Tables (you can look up any school from this link). Of course, this information tells you only part of the picture of a school. The annual parent survey carried out during Learning Review Day, with a sample of 625 parental responses tells us a great deal (see attached document). Pupils’ enjoyment of school, school-home communication and quality of co-curricular activities have improved, whilst parents’ understanding of our assessment and reporting has dropped a little to the mid 90% satisfaction. Overall satisfaction levels are in the high 90% and we thank you for the trust and support you have in us. The school’s promotion of a healthy lifestyle remains greatest concern – something we are working on through our re-focused tutor programme.