This week over 300 Year 9 students and many staff had the honour of listening to Holocaust survivor, Anne Super, share her life story, as part of a visit organised by the History department and The Fed (the leading social care charity for the Greater Manchester Jewish community). Anne is one of 35 Holocaust survivors and refugees resident in Greater Manchester who have worked with The Fed as part of the My Voice project. Students in Year 9 have been learning about the Holocaust through 5 of the My Voice stories, so it was a wonderful opportunity for them to meet Anne after studying her life.
I’m writing this on Friday morning at the end of the last ‘full’ week in school before the summer break. And what a week! I’m sure I’ll have forgotten something, but this week:
On Monday students and staff took place in the whole school elections for student leaders. Expertly managed by Mrs Wilson, over 1200 votes were cast and counted. Congratulations to all the candidates who did a wonderful job, and to the winners. Amelia D (Y9), Will M (Y9), Jemima W (Y8) all join the leadership team, Lilly B and Charlie B (Y11) became the two Head Students and Issy B-M and Harriet R (Y11) became the two deputy head students.
On Tuesday the whole of year nine and around 30 members of staff had the privilege of meeting and listening to Anne Super, a Holocaust Survivor, who told us about her experiences as a young girl before answering questions from the students. Anne was amazing, and so were the 300 members of the class of 2025 who were impeccable in their manners and so mature with their questions. It was a very special moment for me as a headteacher and history teacher.
On Wednesday we welcomed the nine members of staff who are joining the team in September. It was great to meet them and support them in getting ready for next academic year. We also had our first official ‘Celebration Evening’ since 2019, which is so long ago! It was a pleasure to be able to hand awards to around 80 students who have gone above and beyond this year. As I said at the time, there are hundreds of brilliant students and MHS and I would have liked to have had them all there…but sadly that isn’t possible.
Between Monday and Thursday new years 8 to 10 had their ‘celebration assembly’, where prizes are awarded and students perform a variety of pieces to entertain their peers. It’s always nice to see the year groups get together and celebrate their peers.
On Thursday the Geography team took the second half of the new Year 11 cohort out on a very successful ‘Rivers’ fieldtrip, while the PE Department took a team of U13 girls cricketers out for the next stage of their competition. Thursday night also saw our annual Spark night, a festival of the arts with an exhibition, debating, busking, art auction and of course a full performance with group numbers, soloists, dancers and more. The staff even took to the stage but the less said about that the better! If was wonderful to see Bradshaw Hall full again, for what is rapidly becoming my favourite night of the year. Oh, and tickets for October’s ‘Bugsy’ performances go on sale next week on the website – don’t miss out, it’s already looking great!
The only cloud this week has been the literal ones that are sitting over school right now as I type this blog. We ought to be a few hours away from the main event of the week – the Spark Day festival on the field. Sadly, after a lot of preparation from so many people, the weather forecast is against us and we’ve had to scale it right back to the bare bones. Students are taking part in creative lessons during period three, we have some additional events on at break and lunch, but the organised afternoon events are not taking place. It’s a shame, but the event is so big it simply won’t fit indoors. Hopefully we’ll have better luck next year!
So, all in all a busy week – especially as on top of all of the above we’ve also taught lessons every day and carried on learning right to the end. Our new Year 11s head off to work experience next week, 400+ students are on trips away from school and the rest will be taking part in 3.5 days of activities designed to help them experience different things and work with different people. I’m looking forward to it!
There won’t be a blog next week, so I’ll sign off by saying THANK YOU to everyone who has supported us this year. We couldn’t do it without you.
Wishing everyone a safe and peaceful summer,
Student Leader Elections
Congratulations to the following students who were elected this week on to MHSL: Amelia D (Y9), Will M (Y9), Jemima W (Y8)
Head Students: Lilly B and Charlie B (Y11)
Deputy Head Students: Issy B-M and Harriet R (Y11)
Thank you to everyone who applied for a position on MHSL this year and to the whole school community for voting.
The end of June and start of July is always a busy time of year in a secondary school, marked out by a very clear ‘end’ and an equally clear ‘beginning’.
Last Thursday night, myself and over 50 colleagues had the pleasure of helping the wonderful ‘Class of 2023’ mark the end of their five years in school. The Concorde Conference Centre has been home to two Year 11 Proms now and we love it. It’s a fitting venue to hold what is a really important event, and it was fantastic to see students enjoying themselves and celebrating alongside the staff who have helped along the way. We’ll see most of the students again of course, not least for the nerve shredding exam results day in August, but it was lovely to be able to share their final event with them in style.
Move forwards exactly a week and yesterday we welcomed 340 new starters to school on their official transition day. We had great support from primary schools to enable every member of the new Year Sevens for September to attend, and it was a brilliant to see them all jump in with such enthusiasm and confidence. I had the pleasure of teaching one class for a spot of History, and having seen the whole year group at break and lunch they have a bright future here at MHS. Not long to go now before they join us for real. It was also great to meet so many parents and carers in school yesterday evening, for some the start of a new journey as well as their eldest child starts secondary school. Exciting times all round!
Today of course is an odd day with only the new Year 11 in school due to strike action. I’m looking forward to the whole school being back in for one final week before enrichment week, and in particular looking forward to celebration evening, spark evening and spark day – it’s going to be busy!