Our week began with a bang, literally, as students in Year’s 7 and 8 enjoyed participating in our Wonderstruck science event. Full details of the event will be published shortly, including winners of each of the competitions.
The team from Barclay’s visited this week, working with Key Stage 4 students as part of their life skills programme. Students enjoyed a range of activities, engaging in debate and questions, and discovering some useful hints and tips along the way. Feedback following the event included how useful students found the sessions, and the knowledge of the team in supporting them.
Students enjoyed a lively debate with 2 of the candidates standing for election this week. David Chalmers from the Liberal Democrat’s and Siobhan Strode from the Labour party presented their policies for the key areas of interest for our students, before answering questions. Our student body have expressed their interest in improving the environment, better support for mental health and increasing local employment opportunities; to hear how these parties would address these needs if they are elected prompted further debate and discussion.
Student questions ranged from provision of affordable and accessible transport for rural communities, to local economic development. Many of the questions reflected students’ interest in environmental sustainability, particularly the drive for a plastic free Torridge, reducing the use of plastics in supermarkets and issues surrounding electric vehicles.
The candidates were impressed by the range of questions asked by students, their interests and how they were reflecting on the issues which will affect future generations. We thanks David and Siobhan for their time, and trust that the voices of young people, including our students, are firmly in the minds of local and national decision makers.
We are really proud of the leadership opportunities we offer our students in a range of different areas. We currently run the Sport Leader Awards at both level 1 and 2, with many of our KS4 students getting involved. During the last 12 months, 18 learners have participated, resulting in 63 hours of volunteering to improve sports participation for the wider community. The highlight of the year for many students was supporting Woolsery Primary with their Sport’s Day.
Many thanks to local employers who have given up thier time to speak to students as part of our careers programme. This term we have hosted speakers from the sports and leisure sector, conservation, vetinary science, accountancy and the RNLI. These sessions are valuable to offer all students the chance to find out about different careers and the routes people can take to access them. Students really enjoyed the event and we look forward to further engagement with employers over the coming months.
We are pleased to announce that Atlantic Academy has gained a silver award in recognition of our support for the National Citizenship Service. This requires over 25% of our Year 11 students to complete the NCS programme in the summer after completing thier GCSEs. Speaking to these students, we understand what an incredible programme this is, and how it has development many skills, including resilience, confidence and leadership.
Well done to all involved – we will aim for the Gold award next year!
Our new menus launched this half term have met with approval from the students. Tasting activities have encouraged students to try something new, including from our ‘meat free Monday’ menu. All of our food is cooked fresh on site every day, please use the school gateway app to order lunches.
KS3 art students have been busy creating a shoal of herrings, for the art competition held on at Clovelly this weekend. Forming part of the Clovelly Herring Festival, students studied the form and colours observed on herrings before using a variety of techniques to create their fish. The shoal will be displayed at Atlantic Academy after the event.
Student leaders started this half term by leading an assembly on charities, including why they have chosen the different charities this year and the fund raising which has come from this. This was then followed by a ‘spooktacular’ Halloween themed non-uniform day in aid of children in need. We will be holding a bake sale on the Children in Need day, and welcome other fundraising ideas from students.
On Wednesday 30th October we welcomed three members of the Royal Marines Visibility Team (RMVT) to Atlantic Academy to inform students of the opportunities and pathways available to them at post-16 level. The students who signed up to this event have expressed an interest in becoming a part of one of the Forces and felt that this was an experience that would help them consider their career pathway further. Initially the students engaged in a presentation with videos and real life accounts of what is what like to be a Royal Marine. This then led on to Sgt Tom sharing his knowledge about the skills and qualifications required to be successful in the Forces. The second half of the visit saw the students move outside and participate in a physical training exercise where the students certainly seemed to have been tested on their physical ability.
Sgt Tom stated “the students are a credit to the school. They were fully engaged throughout the entire process, asking relative questions and giving their all during the physical session. Many have a lot of potential and I have that some of them can pursue this is the future”.
Feedback from the students:
“It was an interesting experience. A lot of questions I had were answered and they treated us like young adults. The PT was very difficult but it was worth it at the end because you know you have done training that people in the Marines do and that was a great achievement. They were also really friendly and supportive.”
“It was a great opportunity and I really enjoyed it because it was all the things I love. Lots of training and hard work! I have always wanted to go in to the Army but having this opportunity made me think that I might want to join the Royal Marine Commandos.”
“I found today an amazing experience to show me what support the Marines can give to young people like myself and how it can help your mental and physical fitness. I feel that everyone should have this experience to see how hard people train for our country.”
“I have learnt dozens of new things from determination to teamwork. It has hugely inspired me to give 100% with everything I do and I think I will try and get in to the Marines as I loved everything about it, especially the challenges and people you meet.”