Monthly Archives - October 2018

Over 100 Students Awarded Bronze Arts Award

101 Year 8 students from Blessed William Howard Catholic High School have been awarded the Bronze Arts Award in recognition of their hard work during the last academic year. The Arts Award, managed by Trinity College London, encourages young people to enjoy and engage with different art forms - from fashion to film making, pottery to music. To achieve Arts Award at Bronze level, a Level 1 national qualification, students have to collect and collate evidence of their experiences in the arts. It assesses their knowledge and understanding of the arts, as well as their creativity and communication skills. To develop their skills as both performers and audience members, students rehearsed and took part in both the carol service at St Austin's Church in Stafford (at Christmas) and the Blessed William Howard Music Festival (in summer). The students also had an opportunity to watch the school show, ‘The Wizard of Oz’, and to write a review of the performance. The third project that all students completed was a piece of research into the career and work of a chosen artist. The final part of the award required students to share their arts skills with other people. Some students returned to their old primary schools and helped younger children enjoy a new arts experience. The external Arts Award moderator commented on both the wide variety and high quality of the work produced by the large number of students. He also praised the enthusiasm of students as they spoke positively about their involvement in both music and drama. “There has clearly been an incredible amount of time and hard work spent on the children’s portfolios. The differing ways in which young people have presented their work is also enjoyable to see.” commented Chris Watt, Arts Award Moderator. The students were pleased with their achievements and proud to be presented with a certificate for their work. The opportunity is also available for them to continue onto Silver and Gold Awards.

St Austin’s Children help Launch Special Edition Postbox In Honour Of Poet

left to right: Lucy Jones, Felix Fleming, Poppy Newman, Elliot Frost and Kondwani Nkhomafrom St Austin’s reading poems at the launch of the new postbox in Stafford Market Square

To celebrate National Poetry Day, Royal Mail launched a special edition postbox in Stafford town centre, the childhood home town of poet laureate, Dame Carol Ann Duffy.  Students from St. Austin’s Catholic Primary School, which Carol Ann attended from 1962 - 1967, were invited to attend the launch and read some of her best loved poems, selected by the poet laureate herself.

The launch was attended by local MP, Jeremy Lefroy and the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of Stafford who enjoyed listening to the children’s readings.

Situated in the Market Square the postpox will be in place for just a month and is adorned with quotes from some of Carol Ann’s most famous poems.   The postbox will be in full working order for the duration of its customisation.

Mark Street, Head of Campaigns at Royal Mail said: “As one of the guardians of the written word, we relish the opportunity to celebrate the work of Britain’s most treasured writers. Carol Ann Duffy’s poetry is studied by children across the UK, so it’s fantastic that children from her former primary school can join us in honouring her in this way.”

Carol Ann Duffy said: “I’m thrilled to have my poems in the Market Square, a place dear to my heart. And I’m delighted that children from St Austin’s will be involved - as this was the school where I was first encouraged to write poetry by the wonderful Mrs Tilscher.”

St Austin’s Catholic Primary School is holding an Open Evening on 24th October at 6pm for parents interested in enrolling their children.


Music Mark Awarded to The Painsley Catholic Academy High Schools

Music teachers Miss Bennett and Mrs Reardon-Davies with some of the many students at Painsley Catholic College who enjoy taking part in Music.

The two high schools within The Painsley Catholic Academy, Cheadle based Painsley Catholic College and Stafford based Blessed William Howard are delighted to have been awarded the Music Mark Award, which allows the schools membership of this organisation.

Music Mark is an organisation who lobbies for, and champions, a government supported, high quality, music education provision for all school aged children and young people which addresses diversity, equality and inclusion at its core.

Both schools were nominated by Entrust Music Service, the local music provider, due to the value that they places on music.

The schools’ latest Music GCSE results were very impressive with a 100% pass rate and 78% ‘good passes’ (at the top grades 7-9) at Painsley and 100% of passes at grade 5 and above for Blessed William Howard.

“Both schools have always placed great value on music.  Not just as part of the curriculum, but also as an aspect that can enrich and add value to the school experience in a wider context.” commented Head of Music at Painsley College, Miss Hannah Bennett.