Friday 30th September 2022

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Good afternoon / Prynhawn Da

Last night we hosted our New Intake Open Evening and what an amazing occasion it was!  Nearly 350 Castell Alun students attended the evening of their own free will to showcase their talents and their knowledge of a school, of which they are clearly very proud.  Our students have always been our best ambassadors and it was wonderful to welcome around 800 guests to the building to take tours of the school and sample learning experiences.  Diolch yn fawr iawn to everybody who made the evening such a memorable occasion and if anybody requires further information about the admissions process, please do not hesitate to contact the school at your earliest convenience.  We hope to see all Year 6 students who attended the evening and perhaps others soon, when we run a variety of transition events leading up to September 2023.  At the time of writing we have a number of further guests in school for our Open Morning.  Should anyone have been unable to attend either of these two events and still wishes to come and look around the school campus, please simply get in touch and we will arrange this for you as soon as we are able.

Next week students in Year 7 will be invited to visit the library on Wednesday, whereupon they will receive a voucher for £7 towards a book of their choice.  This is an exciting new venture.  It is so very important that students develop reading skills, and ideally a love of reading, as they grow.  This can bring so much pleasure, relaxation and assistance throughout life.  At Castell Alun this year we are placing a great deal of emphasis on the development of skills and perhaps especially oracy skills to support all of our students in becoming confident communicators.

On Thursday 6th October, beginning at 5.15pm in the school hall, we will hold a short information evening for families of students in Year 10, during which there will be input from core subjects and hints and tips for parents/carers on how to support students effectively as they commence their GCSE/BTEC studies.  We do so hope that Year 10 Parents/Carers will be able to attend this short event and we would encourage an ongoing dialogue on how we can work together to support students as they approach exam years with all families.

A number of Year 12 students will sit CATs tests on Friday next week in order to give us an accurate gauge of potential as we monitor progress across all subjects throughout Sixth Form life.

All departments in school have spoken highly of recent Year 6 visitors to school and their willingness to engage in all kinds of learning activities.  A number of staff have noticed the enthusiasm and energy that these potential new students exhibited when with us.  Our Expressive Arts Area staff are extremely excited about the wealth of talent they have observed in recent days and very keen for Year 6 students to slot into extra-curricular clubs and activities in particular.

In sporting news this week, well done to our Year 10 Boys’ football team who won their first-round game of the Welsh Cup against Darland 5-0, and hard luck but well done nevertheless, to the Year 9 Boys’ Team who were narrowly defeated by Hawarden in the same competition.

Our Year 9/10 Netball Team attended the Chwareaonyrurdd Netball Tournament in Bangor, with 24 teams participating.  Our team came second in their group event and thus qualified for the plate competition.  We lost in the final to a strong St. Joseph’s High School team but our girls produced an extremely creditable performance.  We also want to say a big well done to Issy and Nell (Year 11) and Sophie and Ruby (Year 10) who made it into the U16 Flintshire Netball Squad, and in addition congratulations to Ffion, Dottie and Alex (Year 9) who have been selected for the U14 Flintshire Netball Squad.

Castell Alun Athletics teams performed to a high standard at the recent Flintshire meet in Deeside, with our Junior Girls and Junior Boys both taking 1st place, and middle Boys and Middle Girls coming in 2nd overall.  A number of our students will now progress to represent Flintshire in North Wales competitions in the summer term.  Stand out performances were delivered from Daniel and Louis and Alexandra (Year 9).

In individual sporting performances, we are extremely pleased to be able to give a big shout out to Luke (Year 9) who has just taken 2nd place at the Welsh Golf Junior Ping Tour Final in South Wales in the U14s category.  Luke has only been playing golf for a few years and managed to score 38 stableford points over 18 holes against extremely tough competition.  Although not quite ready for the Ryder Cup yet, he is certainly one to watch for the future as his progress on the links is evident to all.  Great job Luke, we are proud of you!

Last weekend Robyn (Year 9) competed in her first ever Premier Division slalom race at the National Whitewater Centre in Bala.  She won the Junior U14 prize and also became the Junior U15 Welsh Kayak Champion.  Robyn is clearly destined for great things in the sport and we watch her progress with great interest.

Really well done to Josh (Year 9) who ended his cricket season with the highest number of runs in the U13s category in Wales and is actually the fifth highest run scorer across all U21 categories in Wales.  Josh scored an amazing 722 runs for Wales and North Wales in total, even making his debut in the Premier Division with a 21 run knock.

Although the weather looks somewhat dodgy today, let’s hope it clears up sufficiently for us all to enjoy a great weekend.

Diolch am ddarllen, mwynhewch y penwythnos.