Friday 25th November 2022   Recently updated !


Bore da,

We have nearly reached the middle of this half term and the lighter evenings are now a thing of the past. However, we are very encouraged to be able to tell you at last that our new all-weather pitch will be partially opened to all students who wish to play football at lunchtimes from Monday. Students have been informed that they must wear their trainers to be able to use this area, and bags must not be taken into the enclosure. Furthermore, it is essential that food and drink are not taken into the all-weather area either. We are excited about finally being able to use this most valuable resource once again, albeit in part, and we would ask for your support in ensuring that students keep to the above rules for everyone’s safety and to ensure that the school insurance policy remains valid at all times. Students should not wear their trainers around school, only on the pitch at lunchtime.

Over recent weeks there have been a couple of very concerning incidences of students crossing the road near the White Lion Pub without due regard to traffic. This section of the road is a bottle-neck for traffic and visibility is poor for crossing also. We want all students and indeed motorists to be safe at all times and we will be getting this message out through our assemblies and group-tutor sessions. Please be so good as to reinforce a similar message to your children also.

After an excellent second half performance against the USA (we won’t mention the first!), Wales take on Iran today. At the time of writing the vast majority of our students are gathered in their year groups to enjoy the game and, for many, this is a demonstration of pride in their heritage, which is very much in keeping with the spirit of the New Curriculum for Wales. Pob Lwc Tim Cymru!

Indeed, this week in our gwersi Cymraeg (Welsh lessons) we have turned our attention to the Cwpan y Byd (World Cup).  We’ve had Urdd youth officers visiting our key stage 3 classes to do some creative activities.  The students participated in an origami session following Welsh language instructions.  The students produced some Welsh football shirts to show support to our Tim Pel-Droed Cymru.

Following the theme of the Curriculum for Wales, we’ve seen excellent attendance at our new Lower School (Years 7,8&9) STEM club. One of the first themes covered was ‘Plastics – how slime is made from thermoplastic’. As you can see from the photos, students were very much hands-on and loved the experience. There are plenty more sessions to come, so please encourage students to join the fun on Wednesday lunchtimes. Science and Technology teachers will supply all the details or just ask Group Tutors for more info! We have also just been awarded a grant from LEGO to assist with the running of this club and are now taking part in Learning Aluminium’s? ‘Binfluencers’ national competition, looking at effective recycling methods.

Tonight, Friday 25th November, is the night of the CAFA Fashion Show. Tickets are available to purchase on the door for anyone who hasn’t yet bought them. Doors open at 6.30pm and the show starts at 7pm. Refreshments are available.

The deadline for orders for the Christmas trees and wreaths has been extended to Sunday 27th November. These have proved really popular in the previous years as they are great quality at a very reasonable price. Orders are online. Please see the link here: https://castell-alun-friends-association.sumupstore.com/

Our new Student Council has been elected and they have had a very successful first meeting. This body plays an essential role in the running of our school and provides an effective conduit for ideas and suggestions, which guide school decision-making. All year groups are represented and feedback is taken forward from Year Council meetings also.

Our Lower School link with Collège Louis-Augustin Bosc in France is still going well.  So far this year we have exchanged two pieces of work – one a postcard, one a paragraph with students introducing themselves. As well as the students receiving work from France we take photos and they are on a shared ‘Padlet’ for the teachers to show to their students. Please follow the link below to view some of our work. We will also be sending Christmas cards and making nameplates for our French students early December: https://padlet.com/stephaniequattri/djdtqkohu1m2iinn

Perhaps now is also a good time to promote our Lower School Languages Club.  The club is for students in Years 7, 8 and 9 in T15 with Miss Lumsdon and Miss O’Neil.

Looking forward, we are delighted that so many parents / carers of our Year 7 students have made appointments for the virtual Group Tutor meeting on either Monday or Tuesday afternoon next week. These sessions have always proved highly informative and helpful in developing our partnership to support all students effectively. Then, on Thursday, we will hold our (face-to-face) Year 12 Parents / Carers’ Evening at school, starting at 4pm. Thank you to those who have already made appointments.

Sixth Form students are now at an advanced stage in their trial examination preparations. We would encourage all to study effectively and also maintain a good work/life balance during the lead-up to their exams, and indeed throughout the assessment period of 5th – 14th December.

Have a great weekend.

C’mon Cymru!