Academy Newsletter


Principal’s Welcome

Dear Parents and Carers,

It is lovely to all be back together in the building after the Easter break, and to see the total focus and commitment to learning from students entering this busy exam season. We do, of course, recognise that exam readiness places a burden on home-life too, and we are grateful for the support provided, especially to our Year 11s and Year 13s, from their families. This week has seen an intensive week of examinations for our Year 8 students too, and I have been impressed at the way they have responded to the intensity of this week and quickly settled into the expected routines.

As we start a new term, we have taken the opportunity to share with you in this newsletter some of the many opportunities that are available to our students to grow their character and give back to their communities. You will see the range of summer term co-curricular clubs and the Personal Development themes for the term ahead, as well as some feedback from one of our intervention groups: The Girls’ Network. At the start of the year, we gave our students the challenge of taking part in at least one co-curricular activity and participating in at least one house event. We are pleased that over 80% of students have done so, and are encouraging the small number remaining to take on a new club or activity over the weeks ahead. We recognise that taking up these opportunities are hugely important to students in terms of growing their character as well as identifying and developing skills, gifts, and talents. It is by growing in character that our students are then able to give back, and have a positive impact on, the communities in which they live and serve.

In our next newsletter, we will be sharing with parents and carers a new video that we have produced with other schools in the Trust that explains “Why Character Matters” and we will invite you again to complete a survey to provide us with your views about this element of our work; thank you in advance for working with us on this journey.

Please also take note of the published holiday dates for the academic year beginning in September 2022, and may I take the opportunity to remind you that holidays in term times cannot be permitted, unless there are exceptional circumstances which have been brought to our attention in advance.

With my best wishes

Mr Thelwell 

In this week’s newsletter you will find:

  1. Personal Development: Challenged
  2. Middle of Year Impact Report
  3. Extra-Curricular Activities
  4. Family Tree
  5. Academy Term Times and Holidays
  6. Celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee
  7. Year 10&12 Work Experience
  8. Countdown to Kingswood
  9. House Newsletters
  10. Recommended Reading
  11. Weekly Menu

Personal Development: Challenged – Our Responsibilities to Ourselves and Each Other

As we reach the summer, with two terms of focus and reflection under our belts, we turn to a theme of responsibility in our Personal Development course.  Central to Bede’s Christian ethos is the knowledge that each of our students is valued for their common humanity, gifted with particular strengths, and morally responsible.  This half term, we therefore wish to challenge them to focus on their duties to themselves and to each other and how they should use their gifts for the moral good of all.  We believe that this is not a choice but an obligation we have if we wish to live in a community that is safe, supportive and thriving for all.  Therefore, each year group will be set a question considering the responsibilities they have. 

In Year 7, we will consider the responsibilities we have to ourselves: those to work well, spend our free time wisely, and to care for ourselves, including building our resilience. 

In Year 8, students will also reflect upon how well they are studying but will also look at how their free time can be used in the service of others at Bede, and how those in the uniformed services show responsibility to others.

In Year 9, we carry on the theme of caring for ourselves, with advice on managing examinations well and succeeding in the Duke of Edinburgh Award.  We will also look more widely at our responsibility to those who live with disability and to those of all genders.

Year 10 return to a focus on responsibility to themselves, or perhaps more accurately, their future selves, will an emphasis on exam preparation as they become the next in line to take their GCSEs.  They too, will consider our obligations to everyone and especially those with the protected characteristics of disability and gender.

Sixth Form also look ahead, with questions on how well they take responsibility for themselves, as young adults, and how prepared they are to take responsibility for others: friends, family and those they will work with one day. Overall, we expect this to be an important half term as we challenge our maturing young people to take the knowledge in their heads and the compassion in their hearts, and consider how well they are putting these into action with the work of their hands for all

Middle of Year Impact Report

Bede Academy’s work with the Girls Network continues to go from strength to strength.  The mentees recently completed their mid-year surveys and these revealed that all is going very well.

By this point, mentors and mentees have completed sessions on the topics of Goal setting, Growth mindset, Positive wellbeing, Confident communication, Being a courageous leader, Becoming a changemaker 

The data collected from this year’s group paints a very positive picture too: 

  • 100% said that their mentor is a good match
  • 100% say mentoring has helped them feel more positive about their future
  • 100% say mentoring is a good use of their time
  • 100% say their mentor is supportive
  • 100% say the mentor makes them feel more confident
  • 78% say their mentor helps them focus more at school

On a more personal level,

  • Two comments about the mentors summarises the experience well: ‘We get along great and she really helps me by giving me lots of opportunities to talk to people about careers for example’

‘My mentor is a very kind caring person.  She really helps me out and celebrates with me when I tell her some of my achievements’.

  • Another mentor has been going above and beyond, coming to support her mentee at her rugby matches and helping her organise her work experience placement

In terms of the workshops:

The first Smart Works workshop was on 28th March and the second one is now booked in for 13th July so all mentees have will have had this brilliant opportunity by the end of their year.  We are also in the process of arranging another workshop in school time on financial education, and mentees have all been invited to the following workshops online also: Getting into Law, Elevate Your Confidence, Get Comfy Managing Money part 1 and 2, Brown Girl Like Me Online Launch.

By the end of the year, this impact will continue to grow as mentees get more opportunities to build their confidence, skills & access to opportunities including work experience and conversations with professionals across a range of fields and workshops. This initiative is the sort of thing we all wish we all had had at school, so it is wonderful to see these Bede students making the most of their opportunity.  The Girls Network are always looking for women in different fields to train as mentors.  If you or anyone you know would be interested in supporting the next generation with your own experience, time and skills, please do get in touch with us and we will be glad to forward your details.

Extra-Curricular Clubs available over the Summer Term


  • Assembly Choir and Band: Main Hall 08:15 – 09:00
  • Music Theory: R150 15:15 – 16:15


  • Assembly Choir and Band: Mail Hall 08:15 – 09:00
  • XCEL: Main Hall 11:00 – 11:50
  • Rock Solid: Main Hall 11:50 -14:20
  • Raise Your Voice: Lecture Theatre 12:00-12:50
  • Bass Band: R151 12:35 – 12:50
  • Tennis Yr7&8: MUGA 15:15-16:15
  • Rounders: Field 15:15-16:15
  • GCSE PE Club: R35 15:15 – 16:15
  • Cricket Yr8&9: Astroturf 15:15 – 16:15
  • Cantata Choir: R151 15:15 – 16:15


  • Assembly Choir and Band: Main Hall 08:15 – 09:00
  • Tennis Yr9&10: MUGA 15:15 – 16:15
  • Rounders Yr9&10: Field 15:15 – 16:15
  • Cricket Yr7: Astroturf 15:15-16:15
  • Jazz Band: Drama Studio 15:15 – 16:15
  • Japanese Club: R218 15:15 – 16:15


  • Assembly Choir and Band: Main Hall 08:15 – 09:00
  • Arts and Crafts Club Yr9: R47 3:20 – 4:15
  • Be Her Lead: R212 15:15:16:15
  • Athletics: Field 15:15 – 16:15
  • Tennis: MUGA 15:15 – 16:15
  • Fitness: Fitness Suite 15:15 – 16:15
  • Ultimate Frisbee: Field 15:15 – 16:15
  • Production – Joseph: R150 15:15 – 16:15
  • Guitar Club: R151 15:15 – 16:15
  • Orchestra: Main Hall 15:15 – 16:15
  • Computer Science: R102 15:15 – 16:15
  • Civics Club R219 15:15 – 16:15
  • Young Historians Club: R219 15:15 – 16:15


  • Production – Joseph: R150 15:15 – 16:15
  • Drum Club: R148 15:15 – 16:15
  • Chess Club: R143 15:15 16:00
  • Keyboard Club: R159 15:15 – 16:15
  • Woodwind Ensemble: R151 15:15 – 16:15

Family Tree

Celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee

As the Jubilee celebrations near, St Cuthbert’s church is preparing for a service of thanksgiving.  At the heart of this will be music reflective of the Queen’s long reign, from her coronation in 1953 to today.  Some of you will no doubt love singing, and this is an opportunity for you to join the choir for the occasion.   Choir practices are at the church on Plessey Road from 6 – 6.50 pm.

You might also like to get involved in other ways.  Here is a link to the official website for your information: The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee 2022

Academy Term Times and Holidays

Academic Year 2022 – 2023

  Staff Training Day  (Students on holiday)  Monday 5 September 2022 Tuesday 6 September 2022
  Autumn Term begins  Wednesday 7 September 2022
  Autumn Half-Term holiday  Monday 24 October – Friday 28 October 2022
  Staff Training Day (Students on holiday)    Monday 31 October 2022  
  Autumn Term ends  Friday 23 December 2022
  Staff Training Day (Students on holiday)  Monday 9 January 2023
  Spring Term begins  Tuesday 10 January 2023
  Spring Half-Term holiday  Monday 20 February – Friday 24 February 2023
  Spring Term ends  Friday 31 March 2023
  Summer Term begins  Monday 17 April 2023
  May Bank Holiday  Monday 1 May 2023
  Summer Half-Term holiday  Monday29 May – Friday 2 June 2023
  Summer Term ends  Friday 21 July 2023

Students start academic year 2023/2024 on Monday 4 September 2023

Year 10 and Year12 Work Experience

Well done to those who are continuing to bring in their Work Experience forms. Just a reminder that you should now have moved from requesting work experience placements to completing the “Work Experience Placement for Employers”. Time is fast approaching for all forms to be submitted back to the Academy. The deadline to have placements finalised is 23rd May 2022.

Please remember the steps below for the Work Experience process

  1. Your “Request Form” will be handed back to your tutor through your tutor folder
  2. The request form will have a “Work Experience Placement for Employers” form attached to it (These forms need to be completed by the business and signed by the students’ parent/carer. This form allows the academy to contact the business and check that it is safe for the student to partake in WEX)
  • Students need to take the “Work Experience Placement for Employers” alongside their Cover Letter if needed and CV to the business that they want to apply to (They can either post the forms or take them directly to the business)
  • Once the “Work Experience Placement for Employers” forms have been completed and signed off, please return the forms to Mrs J Taylor via your form tutor.  

A reminder of the dates for work experience:

  • Year 10: 20th – 24th June
  • Yearr 12: 13th – 17th June

If you need support, please see:

Your Tutor

Mrs J Taylor

Mrs L Johnson (Careers Advisor)


“Mrs Taylor I have completed and handed back to you my Work Experience Placement for Employers form what do I do next?”

If you have handed back a completed Work Experience Placement for Employers form this is added to the FutureWorks website. This is the company who check that the work placement you wish to go on is safe. Once they have contacted and verified the placement you will be given an approval form from reception that lets you know your WEX is now fully complete. All you need to do is wait for this form to come back to you.

Year 8 Countdown to Kingswood

7 Weeks!

House Newsletters

Oswald House
Aidan House
Cuthbert House

Key Stage 3

Band of Brothers – Stephen E. AmbroseReview
Unwind – Neal ShustermanReview

Key Stage 4

The Lost Child of Philomena Lee – Martin SixsmithReview
How We Ricochet – Faith GardnerReview

Key Stage 5

Close-Up on War: The Story of Pioneering Photojournalist Catherine Leroy – Mary Cronk FarrellReview
The Woman Who Split the Atom: The Life of Lise Meitner: Marissa MossReview

Lunch Menu