Year 9 Welcome Back Letter

September 2023

Dear Parent,
I am delighted to welcome back our Year 9 pupils and I hope you all had a lovely summer break. The students have made a good start to the academic year, looking very smart, displaying a mature attitude and a sensible approach to their classes.
This is the most important academic year your child has yet to face. In Year 9 pupils must build upon knowledge and achievements gained in the lower school and must also prepare for choices and life in the upper school. Pupils must be looking forward to and focussing on their option choices; further communication about this will be sent to parents later in the year.

This year the form tutor, myself and you as the parent, must work together to ensure that your child takes advantage of all that Blessed Edward Oldcorne Catholic College has to offer. In order to achieve this it is vital that we focus on the following:
● Maintaining good attendance and punctuality
● Continuing the excellent standards of school uniform
● Ensuring homework is completed and handed in on time
● Maintaining good communication between school and home
● Benefitting from the wide range of extra curricular activities

Firstly, please be reminded that when a student’s attendance is below 95% it is a cause for concern. As you can see from the table below, even at 95% attendance, nearly 50 hours of learning is lost plus all of the benefits of socialising and interacting with peers.

Annual Attendance Percentage Days Attended Days Missed Hours of Missed Lessons
75%142.5 47.5237.5

Ensuring attendance at school is a parent/carer’s legal obligation and we are keen to support you with this, not least because of the huge amount of national data that proves the correlation between good attendance and academic progress. Please can we ask parents to use the absence line to report any necessary absence. Punctuality will also continue to be monitored and pupils will be detained if they arrive late after the bell at 8.45am. Regular poor punctuality will result in further detentions and each time a child is late they will be given a behaviour point. Please can we ask parents to support us in encouraging good attendance and punctuality.

Secondly, we are excited to report that the school Synergy app is now live to parents and we hope it will improve communication with you, enabling us to share your child’s successes in school as well as informing you of any sanctions and the reasoning. It is important to us as staff to praise your child’s successes and offer rewards where possible. It will enable you to have a clear view of your child’s successes and behaviour log within school. You will also be able to view your child’s praise points awarded again for a variety of reasons eg a good piece of homework, good effort in class, an excellent report, good attendance, attendance at extra curricular clubs. The timetable of extra curricular activities available in school can be viewed on our school website. Let’s encourage our students to take advantage of the wide range of
free activities available to them.

Finally, we believe communication is the key to building good relationships between school and home and we are always keen to meet with parents to resolve matters face to face. We fully understand that urgent issues can arise but please bear in mind that we cannot always see parents who arrive without notice during the school day. Staff are often teaching or in meetings. Please call ahead to arrange a mutually convenient time to meet rather than arrive at school unannounced and risk disappointment if no one is available. Many thanks for your understanding on this matter.
If you wish to contact me or your child’s tutor via email for any reason, please do not hesitate.
Yours sincerely

Mr P Bryant
Head of Year 9

Important dates this term:
Thurs 28 Sept: Open Evening 5.00pm – 8.00pm
Wed 25 Oct: Pastoral Planning Afternoon: School closes at 1.35pm
Fri 27 Oct: Students finish for Half Term for 1 week
Thu 21 Dec: Students finish for Christmas at 12.30pm