Academy Newsletter


Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Principals Welcome

Dear Parents and Carers

Here we are at the end of a long and busy term. We are approaching the moment when we remember the birth of Christ – The Wondrous Gift – God’s son born so that we might have life and salvation. This is the theme of our Carol Service which we have shared today with students, staff and our community today. You can find a link to it below. We pray that this year, when so may other messages crowd in we don’t lose sight of this message, this wondrous gift.

Below are a range of items to celebrate as well as updates and arrangements of academy events and the start of term. These have been shared with links to video messages or further information to help you find your way to the information that is most relevant for you.

May I take this opportunity to thank staff, students and parents for all their hard work and ongoing support over this challenging term. I hope that you all have a safe and joyful Christmas and New Year.

Mr Thelwell 

Carol Service 2021

Please enjoy our christmas carol service below. This years theme is “The Wondrous Gift”

Parents Ethos Survey

You will be aware that this term has seen a refresh of our ethos across the trust of Emmanuel Schools, framed in our Vision, Mission and Virtues. We are keen to gauge the views of students and parents in terms of the value that is placed on our ethos, and also so that we can see what impact our ethos has on the character development of students and staff. To this end, please take 5 minutes to share your views, using the link or QA code below. The survey is totally anonymous.

Parents’ survey and QR code:

January return arrangements

Please find linked HERE the letter sent to all parents regarding January reopening. Please bear in mind that this is subject to change, depending upon any government or local authority led changes to school re-opening arrangements. We will, of course, share any changes with you as soon as possible, should this be necessary. Year 8 and Year 9 will work from home on Tuesday 4th January and return on-site on Wednesday 5th January, and all other year groups will return for an 8.25am start on Tuesday 4th January.

Sixth Form bowling evening

Over 100 students attended the Sixth Form Christmas party last week. Students enjoyed a trip to the Metrocentre for an evening of bowling and a meal. There was a competitive edge as always as the Sixth Form tutors were aiming for lots of strikes! Mr Birdsall was the outright winner with the highest score of the night! All the students had an excellent time and were suitably dressed in Christmas themed clothing and Santa hats. A great evening was had by all!

The BIG Quiz

In the lecture theatre at the end of the term and indeed at the end of the year, three houses pitted their wits against each other in the BIGGEST quiz of the year. Six staff members, six sixth formers and all of year 7; the energy was palpable! Was Miss Anderson’s knowledge of the biggest dinosaur enough to secure victory? Or Mr Coulson’s understanding of the twelve days of Christmas; did that secure victory? Did Miss Tubby’s knowledge of Shrek 2 cut the mustard? It was a two horse race, with Aiden house taking the lead for the first three rounds, closely followed by Cuthbert with Oswald tripping and falling at the first hurdle. HOWEVER! In the final, Christmas themed round, Cuthbert took the lead and won the BIG QUIZ, much to the delight of Mrs Normanton. What larks!

House Chess

Standing room only as Autumn term’s House chess reached its spectacular conclusion. Knight takes rook, queen blocks check, knight attacks pawn, pawn takes rook; reveal check, king retreats, queen to the rescue but, oh no!, didn’t see the bishop taking aim diagonally from the other side of the board. Bishop takes queen. King retreats again. Rook blocks king in. Pawn makes meaningless move forward. Queen pins king, for the win.

Oswald house swept the top of the chess ladder coming first, honourable mentions to Aidan house for taking second, but Cuthbert house couldn’t do enough to do anything but come third.

No worries though, next chess ladder begins afresh on 7th January. 3:15pm in room 143. See Mr Harrison for details😊

Our Winning Christmas Card designs

Here are the top three card designs that won this years competition

Core Virtues at Christmas

Christmas Door and Christmas Cracker Results

Gingerbread house competition

Alfie (8 Jones) came 1st – Aiden House (with some help from Mr Elsworth 😊)

Summer (9 Thompson) came 2nd, with some help from Kiya (8 Fraser) – Cuthbert

Operation Elf and Residents Tea Party

The academy has enjoyed a particularly wonderful sharing of Christmas activities: decorating doors, enjoying a Big Quiz, competing in the Christmas Cracker competition, designing Christmas cards and sharing in events in the wider community such as the St Cuthbert’s Christmas Tree Festival and the Blyth Town Carol Service.  The Bede Academy choir was most appreciative of being able to share the joy of Christmas, singing once again publicly after such a long break.  Giving is very much at the heart of Christmas. The Residents’ Tea Party was unfortunately cancelled due to latest government guidance, but it was possible to deliver Christmas Tea Hampers to many who would have attended.  This sharing of lovely food and Christmas wishes was wonderful and the theme of giving was again to the fore with the Operation Elf appeal.  In spite of all of the generosity shown through the many charitable events during Autumn Term, the tables put out to receive donations, in the reception area, were crammed with Christmas goods.  Yet again this was testimony to the warm-hearted thoughtfulness of the school community.  The gifts will provide significant Christmas cheer for needy Blyth families. The Foodbank and the Operation Elf teams are most grateful for all of the support given in this way.  A huge thank you to all of you who have expressed the wonderful spirit of Christmas in this way.

Accelerated Reader

Year 7 Accelerated Reader

I have been so impressed with Year 7 and the progress they have made over this half term with their reading and Accelerated Reader (AR) quizzes.  Each half term I award a prize to the tutor group who has passed the most AR quizzes; this half term the prize goes to 7 Wylie who have achieved an outstanding 87.3% pass rate!  This is an amazing achievement and is testament to the commitment this tutor group have shown towards their reading.  Well done 7 Wylie, some chocolatey treats will be coming your way!  In second place is 7 Anderson with an 83.8% pass rate and in third place hot on their heels, is 7 MacKinlay with 83.2%.  There have also been some outstanding individual performances from our Year 7’s too; a special mention must be given to the following students who have absolutely smashed their personal reading targets:  Maddi (7 Stonebanks) achieved 54.7 points , Scarlett (7 Stonebanks) achieved 45 points, Harry (7 MacKinlay) achieved 32.3 points, Tom (7 Stonebanks) achieved 30.4 points, William (7 Townend) achieved 27 points, Alfie (7 MacKinlay) achieved 23 points, Denujaa (7 MacKinlay) achieved 19 points, Eve (7 MacKinlay) achieved 18.2 points and Jayden (7 Tubby) achieved 11.3 points.  A massive well done to you all!

I hope you all, young and old, receive some fantastic books in your Christmas stockings this year, and I wish you many happy hours of reading!

Merry Christmas,

Mrs Watson

Author Ele Fountain

Friday 3rd December saw us welcome, albeit virtually, children’s author Ele Fountain into the academy to talk about her novel Boy 87, which our Year 8 students are currently studying in English.  Boy 87 follows the journey of Shif, a young boy who is forced to flee his country due to unrest in his homeland, and finds himself on a perilous journey to freedom and safety.   Inspired to write Boy 87 whilst living in Ethiopia during the height of the refugee crisis, Ele saw first hand the plight of many locals who had no choice but to leave everything they knew behind and find a new life in a strange country.  

Our students were gripped listening to Ele talk of what life was like in Ethiopia for her and her family and how she came up with the story of Shif and what it was like for her to write some of the most harrowing scenes in the book.  Year 8 have shown a great understanding of the themes within the book and this shone through in the questions they asked Ele and also in class discussions, where they have shown a real level of maturity.

If you would like to learn more about Ele Fountain and see what other books she has written, then why not take a look at her website

Boy 87:

Shif is just an ordinary boy who likes chess, maths and racing his best friend home from school. But one day, soldiers with guns come to his door – and he knows that he is no longer safe.

Shif is forced to leave his mother and little sister, and embark on a dangerous journey; a journey through imprisonment and escape, new lands and strange voices, and a perilous crossing by land and sea. He will encounter cruelty and kindness; he will become separated from the people he loves.

Boy 87 is a gripping, uplifting tale of one boy’s struggle for survival; it echoes the story of young people all over the world today.’

Y13 Gallery Visits

On Wednesday the 8th December Y13 Art students had a much belated opportunity to indulge and develop their cultural capital and take in the exhibitions of a range of galleries in Newcastle and Gateshead. The group visited the Hatton and Laing Art galleries, the Baltic centre for contemporary art, Newcastle Arts Centre and finally the Biscuit Factory commercial gallery. Here’s what they thought of it: “The experience was super informative and inspirational and I look forward to implementing techniques inspired by what I saw today into my work.” “Going to see different artistic presentations has expanded my view on art as a whole. I was especially drawn to the Guerrilla Girls and their political views about art, and I hope to implement that in my own work.” “Going to visit galleries across the local area gave me a great insight to past and current art which has been an exciting experience.” -Billie ledger “My experience today has been really fun and interesting, I got to see artists work relating to my work in class. The materials I got for art were very high quality for a good price too.”-Luke Bolton “Today’s experience was very fun but also informative, presenting me with a range of art that I could use as inspiration for my own work. I especially enjoyed being able to get close and personal with the exhibitions at the Baltic.” “There was a lot of inspiring pieces at the galleries today that will help me progress with my own sketchbook. I found the many of the works in The Portraits of an Artist exhibition in the Laing incredibly fascinating and I really appreciated the opportunity to get more art materials and supplies along the way.” – Josh French “Visiting the galleries today, has provided me with a wider experience of art. It was interesting seeing the diverse mediums and styles. My favourite piece I saw today was The Bard because of its wackiness and juxtaposition of the old man playing the harp and the army marching down below.” – Luke Stevenson “We got to feed our hunger for seeing the art ,details, artists and having that experience was great. The interior screen print on paper by Richard Hamilton and Francis Dodd portrait by Charles Cudnall were my favourites.”

Support over the Christmas holiday

Northumberland County Council – Families supported during the Christmas holidays

The welfare of our students is at the heart of all we do at Bede and our care and concern does not end with the end of terms. With this in mind, we would like to remind you that Welfare support can still be reached via or by leaving a voicemail on the Welfare line, accessed via Reception. Emails and voicemail will be monitored by an on-call DSL each day. Furthermore, we recommend the Kooth app Home – Kooth for individual support, the Be You Text service on 07507 332 258, and the wider sources of support linked on the Academy’s Welfare webpage. This year in particular, we want to highlight Northumberland Communities Together that offers support and connections in the local area.

Northumberland County Council – Families supported during the Christmas holidays Response Hub: • Phone: 01670 620015 between 9am to 6pm, seven days a week. • Email: As we continue through a difficult time, may we wish all our Bede families the very best for the festive period and every blessing for the coming year.