A message to year 12 from Sarah
Dear Students, Parents and Carers,
Ron Dearing UTC breaks up for the Christmas holidays on Wednesday 20th December at 12.30 p.m. We re-open for students for the Spring term on Tuesday 9th January at 9.15 a.m. when normal timetable resumes.
Our first term has been really busy, exciting and successful. The overwhelming majority of students have settled in extremely well. Attendance is very high at 97% (2% above the national average), although we’d prefer 100%! Behaviour around school and in lessons is calm and purposeful – it really does feel like a business environment rather than a school. Our first attainment data entry shows that students are making very good progress towards their challenging end of Year 13 targets. We are in the process of collating this data into a report which students and parents/carers will receive by email in January. Students will also be reviewing progress towards their academic and employability skill targets with their Academic and Business Mentors in January. Our Subject Parents Evening will take place on 22nd February. This is when you and your son/daughter will have the opportunity to meet his/her subject teachers to discuss progress in each subject s/he is studying. Representatives from our Governing Board will also be available to meet with parents/carers and students.
As a brand new school, we are monitored closely by the Department of Education (DfE) who will carry out termly monitoring visits until our first Ofsted inspection, due in Autumn 2019. This is to check that we are providing a high quality education which justifies the multi-million-pound investment the DfE and our employer partners have put into the school. Unfortunately, the DfE do not allow us to publish the reports form these visits. We are gutted about this as we have received a great report from our first DfE visit which took place on 21st November. As I would have expected, our students were a credit to the school, our employer partners and you. Very positively, the DfE confirmed that, providing the school continues to maintain standards and implements the school development plan, we are on track to realise our goal of being judged ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted.
The positive report from the DfE was supported by our anonymous student and parent questionnaires. I have enclosed feedback from both of them. We were delighted with the feedback, particularly the following statistics:
- 100% of students stated they fell safe at RDUTC
- 100% of students stated they are well looked after at RDUTC
- 97% of st7udents would recommend RDUTC to other students
- 99% of students stated that RDUTC is well-led and managed
Thank you for completing the questionnaires. We really value your opinions and use them to review and inform our policies. In order to involve parents/carers more in the leadership of RDUTC, we would like to recruit two parent governors to our Governing Board. Further information about this will follow in January.
As we draw near to the end of a first term, we are reviewing the progress we have made. The priority for this term was to: settle into our new building; establish routines; implement policies; get teaching and learning off to a great start; get to know our students and set them meaningful academic and employability skills targets to work towards; complete the procurement process for the expensive mechatronics and virtual reality equipment. We are confident that we have achieved these goals, although we underestimated how long the procurement processes would take – well done to Steve for driving these though! The £50,000 Library facility and £360,000 VR Suite will be finished by mid- January.
Our focus for next term is to develop our project-based learning and expand our enrichment curriculum to maximise the use of our state of the art facilities. A number of projects have already started:
- Agile Project Management – our first Employability Skills project involving C4DI, KCOM, RB, Siemens Gamesa, Smith & Nephew and Spencer Group
- Bridge Project – Spencer Group
- Cyber Security – KCOM
- F1 Challenge
Next term we will be launching the following projects:
- Fundamental British Values involving the Human Resources departments at our employer partners
- Gaviscon Project – RB
- Wind Power – Siemens Gamesa
We are also in the process of working with a number of new employer partners who have come on board. These include:
- APD Comms
- Sonoco Trident
- Sewell Group
In terms of enrichment, we currently offer:
- Combined Cadet Force (CCF) which now has 23 members;
- Adobe Illustrator training led by Sarah Daniels, a local Hull artist and designer who produced the beautiful piece of public art in our Reception area;
- Open workshop time in Engineering;
- Gym membership at Latus Training;
- Sports at Latus Training
We have conducted a questionnaire asking our Y12 students to comment on what they would like to see introduced to further enrich their 6th Form experience. Whilst many of the issues raised were already in hand, some other really useful points have been brought to our attention. Consequently, the Spring Term is going to be very busy with lots of new initiatives. These include:
- Dedicated 6th Form Room with 6th Form Noticeboard;
- Student Council;
- Social Committee to energise the social aspect of the 6th Form to encourage students from different courses to mix;
- Drone Club with Octovision Media Ltd;
- PixelBots Coding with Rob Myles from C4Di;
- Reading Circles;
- Virtual Reality Club which will take place in the Greenport Hull VR Suite;
- University Aspiration Programme in conjunction with the University of Hull;
- Increased workshop time for Engineering Students;
- Work Experience Programme;
- Jobs for 6th Form Students.
We will also be developing our partnership with Latus Training in the New Year to set up a health and well-being programme for our own students and staff to ensure we are all leading heathy lifestyles, maximise our own productivity in the work place and work off our Christmas excesses! More information about this will be emailed to you in January.
Finally, all that remains for me to do is to thank you very much for your support this term and, on behalf of all our staff, wish you a very happy Christmas and New Year.