05 June 2013: At the last Parkside Governors' meeting in May, the Governors were proud to witness the launch of our very own Parkside App for both Apple Ipads and Iphones. This App, which is available free from the Apple Store, links to our own website and will be a quick and easy way for students, staff and parents to gain a quick update from Parkside on many areas of school life. The creation of the App was in the hands of one of our own Year 10 students, Nick Harris, and the Governors were full of praise for his initiative. The initial idea arose out of work within our own Digital Leaders Group at Parkside. This group led by Mrs Murray engaged students from across the school in developing their own expertise in the new technologies and sharing this knowledge with both students and also staff! Nick attended a training course for the school on App Design and this is his first project. The App currently contains all the information on the school diary and immediate news.
03 June 2013: Just before the Spring Bank holiday I was pleased to be asked to present the awards to students from the Keighley area who had taken up a college course alongside their normal school studies. The college offers a good range of courses for our Year 10 and Year 11 students that are not really practical for most schools. Motor Vehicle Maintenance and Hair and Beauty are two popular ones, but they also offer Fabrication and Welding and Construction. On the day as well as presenting course certificates to all of our Parkside students I was delighted to present special awards to three of our students. Student of the Year in Motor Vehicle was Ben Sutcliffe, Student of the Year in Health and Beauty was Kelsey Elliot and Most Improved Student of the Year in Health and Beauty was Robyn Oxley. Well done to all our students at college.
28 March 2013: With good wishes for a happy Easter break. The students and staff on the ski trip in Austria also send their best wishes.
15 March 2013: Parkside Goes Dutch... Part 2: Parkside staff moved over to teach on the continent in March as Mrs Harness, Mrs Laoufir and Dr Rickwood all visited our partner school in Rotterdam to deliver Maths lessons to their students. The project focuses on the delivery of lessons in Mathematics through the use of ICT, particularly Apple iPads, and has the wonderful name "Weird to Wired". The Dutch students, who fortunately for our school were all bilingual, enjoyed the lessons and found using the technology a real bonus in their understanding of Mathematical concepts. All this work and the lesson development is also being shared with our own students. The staff from Comenius College return to work with our staff and students in July this year.
The photograph shows Mrs Harness, Head of Mathematics at work with some of the Dutch students.
04 March 2013: Just before half term we had a special review day for Year 9 and Year 11. This day was planned to allow the students to present their own view of their progress in school. There has already been a lot of feedback to this different addition to our regular consultation evenings and we will be reviewing these for the summer term. Your views are valuable so please keep them coming in to us. John Tomlinson, who has organised these days, is collecting the views together for a report.
The process for appointing a new Headteacher for Parkside is underway and Governors will be interviewing at the end of March. A letter will be sent out to all parents by the Chair of Governors following this process.
15 January 2013: Welcome back to our New Year at Parkside. Currently we are in the grip of some icy weather and traveling to and fro from school can be difficult, particularly if you live in some of the outlying areas. We will always try, via the website and email particularly ParentMail, to keep you informed of our situation and act to keep our students and staff as safe as possible
The New Year brings a host of news for our Post 16 students gaining offers of places to continue their studies after Parkside. For many the next two terms will be crucial in terms of work to gain the grades to take up these places and we will be doing all we can to support them. This week I have had a "Breakfast with the Boss" with a group of them and they are very excited about their future.
Our current Year 11 students are also very much focused on exams and coursework with their GCSEs to move them towards their chosen courses and opportunities for the next academic year. Our own Post 16 Taster Day is coming up for students on 04 February which will help them with their own choices of subject.
21 December 2012: The school term ends this week with a number of traditional events. We have enjoyed an excellent school Christmas lunch, sang carols at lunchtime and at the local church carol service. The Post 16 students particularly have been in a festive mood and a group of students with Mr Phil Logan and Mrs Clare Murray supported the Cullingworth Village Christmas Lunch.
11 December 2012: The school celebrated last year's GCSE results on Thursday 06 December with Dr John Smith presenting the awards and certificates. The event was streamed live on the internet but if you missed the evening there are some great photographs available on line at http://www.ordermyphotos.co.uk/orders/index.asp
Saturday 08 December saw the Christmas Fair at Parkside which was a great day of fundraising for all. The Parkside Parents' Association really did the school proud with 30 stalls and Santa making a guest appearance.
19 November 2012: On Friday 16 November groups of Year 7, 8 and 9 students were subjected to a grilling from four "Dragons" as part of a day's activity as potential "Dragon's Apprentices". The students, working in groups, had to come up with a marketable idea, a campaign, video and a presentation. The winners were a group calling themselves Revolution. A great day was enjoyed by all who took part. Special thanks to our visiting "Dragons" and Mrs Laoufir.
08 November 2012: To celebrate our return to the autumn term our Post 16 students, pictured below, created a fantastical, ghoulish environment for our new Year 7 students to experience a Halloween Disco. The disco combined music, specially created food treats and games to entertain our newest students. It was a great success and our Post 16 students certainly looked the part.
22 October 2012: Half term is approaching and it seems to have flown by this year. Many school trips have taken place as usual, with two in particular in these last two week, which deserve a mention. We had our Year 8 Adventure Trip to Condover Hall in Shrewsbury, during October where 120 Year 8 students took part in a wide range of activities supported by the Centre and our staff. We have also had a fantastic trip to the Isle of Mull for some of our Duke of Edinburgh Award students. The photo below shows the group on top of Ben More (966 metres) which is an official "Munroe" mountain. You can catch their blog on http://isle-of-mull-2012.posterous.com
04 October 2012: We had our Prospective Open Evening for next year's students and parents. It was a very positive evening with all departments showing off their expertise. I particularly wish to thank all our students who participated by helping on the evening and showed pride in being part of Parkside.
07 September 2012: We were finally able to hold our School Sports Day during the first week back and it was a tremendous occasion. Based around tutor groups representing the countries who participated in the summer Olympic Games, many students excelled themselves both in their own events and in their spirit of cheering others on. The event winners gained specially produced Parkside Olympic drinks bottles with the logo from the Games and the motto The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win, but to take part..." Our event coincided appropriately with the final week of the Paralympic Games.