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Weekly email – 3 May 2024

2024 > May > 03 > Weekly email – 3 May 2024
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A message from Ms Greenhalgh

I hope you’ve had a good week and are looking forward to the long weekend. A reminder that school will be closed on Monday 6 May for the May Day Bank Holiday, reopening on Tuesday 7 May for a ‘B’ Week.

Sixty-one of our Year 8 students recently took part in the Junior Maths Challenge, and this week our Head of Maths Faculty, Mrs Tucker, reported that more than half of them received a certificate. Six students received a gold award, 19, a silver and 13, a bronze. A special shout out goes to Lewis Clarke, who did so well that he has got through to the next round, the Junior Kangaroo, which takes place in June. Well done to all those who took part!

Congratulations once again to the long list of students who have received a Golden Ticket this week and to those nominated by their faculty to have hot chocolate with Mr Beever, Deputy Headteacher and Mr Collins, School Business Manager today, including Harry, Charlie, Roxy, Immy, Sophie, Sofia and Val.

It’s wonderful to see so many of our students being respectful, responsible and ready and aspiring to be the best that they can be.

Have a great weekend.

With best wishes,

Gemma Greenhalgh

What is my child learning at the moment?

Please see below to find out what your child has been learning about recently in order to have productive discussions about their education:

Year 7 – Faculty: Creative
Conversation starters

  • Design & Technology: Year 7 are continuing their studies of Sustainability and the Environment, with Block 3 drawing to a close this week. Please ask your child which discipline they are moving to: Product Design, Graphics, Textiles or Food Preparation & Nutrition, and about the environmental factors they have studied and how we can reduce the impact of human activity on our planet. You can also ask to see what products they have made.
  • Fine Art: Year 7 have almost finished painting their African inspired masks. We have been impressed with the effort they invested in developing blending and fading skills with acrylic paint. We will then start our final Year 7 project ‘Art & Issues – Endangered Animals’ project. Students will study the screen print series of endangered animals created by Andy Warhol in the 1980s and research their favourite endangered animal as a starting point for a colourful personal mixed media study. Looking at Andy Warhol’s animal-themed screen prints with your child would be great preparation.

Year 8 – Faculty: Humanities
Conversation starters

  • History: We have recently been studying the Agricultural and Industrial Revolution. Why was an industrial town/city an unhygienic place to live? What were the main changes between 1750 and 1900? Who were the Luddites and why were factory owners so wary of their leader Ned Ludd?
  • Geography: Students have been investigating weather and climate around the world. Question: Why are the Monsoons important for India?
  • RE: Students are learning different beliefs about the afterlife to answer the question ‘Is Death the End?’ We have looked at what non-religious people could believe, as well as Christian and Buddhist beliefs about life after death. This week we have started to learn about humanism and how we should make most of the life we have now and how the students want to be remembered when they leave school in Year 11.

Year 9 – Faculty: Science
Conversation starter

Students have started their GCSE Science studies – learning about Cells, Atomic Structure and Energy. Can students name the parts of an animal and plant cell? Can students draw and label the parts of an atom? Can students name eight energy stores?

Year 10 – Faculty: English
Conversation starter

Year 10 classes have either started (or will soon start!) their study of poetry for their GCSE literature exam. Students will read and explore 15 poems in depth which focus on the themes of Power and Conflict.

Year 11 – Faculty: Performance
Conversation starters

  • Drama: Students are continuing written exam practice and preparation, focussing on stage configurations, stage positioning, roles and responsibilities of theatre makers, ‘Blood Brothers’ by Willy Russell and ‘Things I Know to be True’ by Andrew Bovell – not long to go now!!
  • PE: Summer sports are our focus. Students will be doing either rounders or softball.
  • Music: Set work – ‘Graceland’ by Paul Simon. Revision of tricky areas identified by students.

We hope that you will find this information useful when talking to your child about their learning.

Additionally, you might want to take a look at the curriculum section of our website which has lots more information about what your child is, has, or will be learning over the academic year.

Key Stage 3 End of Year Assessments

Our final term of the year is in full swing and we are approaching our end of year assessments for Key Stage 3 students.

Assessments will take place on:

  • Year 7: 20 – 24 May
  • Year 8: 3 – 7 June
  • Year 9: 10 – 14 June

We carry out formative assessment in most lessons through low stakes assessment strategies and then frequent summative assessments periodically to consolidate specific topic knowledge and recall previous learning. This assessment week should feel no different for students as they are used to testing their knowledge. However it is important that we incrementally and age appropriately prepare them for the exams they will encounter in Year 11 and focus on building good study habits, reviewing and relearning work they did earlier in the year. It is also a good opportunity for students to experience a larger scale assessment so they are able to cope with the higher stakes assessments of Year 11. Crucially the information both students and teachers gain from the assessments is invaluable to our planning and intervention.

Please note the following information:

  • Not all subjects will have end of year assessments due to the nature of their subject and curriculum plan.
  • Students will normally sit their assessments during their lesson in their own classrooms.
  • Students with access arrangements, eg a need for extra time for assessments and exams, will receive this.
  • Students will be informed by their class teacher when their assessment is and guided to revision topics.
  • We encourage students to revise using our ‘Fab Four’ revision strategies which can be found here.
  • Revision resources can be found in a subject’s Google Classroom and exercise books.

Further information on KS3 Assessments can be found here.

We also appreciate that some students may find assessments worrying or stressful. Please let us know if we can support your child further during this time.

Helping your child cope with their GCSE exams

We wanted to share some helpful links with parents and carers of Year 11 students as they embark upon their GCSEs. An excellent website for parents is:

There are also links for students below, and these have been shared with the students via the Prom Google Classroom (as we know that they will check this regularly!)

Parent Governors

We currently have vacancies for parent governors on the school’s Local Governing Body (LGB). The LGB takes responsibility for the success of Millthorpe School. Whilst not closely involved with its day-to-day running, it ensures that it is being run effectively so that its students can be successful. It acts as a “critical friend” to the Headteacher, discussing the strategic direction of the school and, with the trust, its long-term plans.

Meetings are held at school around eight times per year, starting at 4.30pm and lasting around one-two hours. If you are interested in putting yourself forward, please email an expression of interest to the Head’s PA at by 12pm on Monday 20 May and we will send you a nomination form by return. You do not require another parent to nominate you or second your nomination. We will circulate voting details after half term.

Water safety

A couple of weeks ago we let you know that students in Years 9-11 had been learning about water safety in assemblies, which included a video from the Royal Lifesaving Society UK. As previously communicated, we will be showing the video to our younger students in Years 7 and 8 in assemblies next week to ensure they are aware of the dangers. As the video is quite hard-hitting we wanted to share the video link with you once more so that you can watch it before next week if you’d like to. Please note that we have decided to only show the first six minutes of the film as some of the following shots are rather graphic.

We will also be showing the RNLI’s film, Float to Live, which can be viewed here.

Form tutors have been notified about the assembly content so they can have a conversation with students beforehand.

Any parents/carers with concerns should please contact Mrs Cooper.

Warmer weather

Now the weather is finally getting warmer, please send your child(ren) to school with a refillable water bottle which they can replenish at a number of points across school during the day.

Bake sale

A group of girls in Year 7 and 8 are holding a bake sale next week to raise money for Breast Cancer Research.

The bake sale will take place on Wednesday 8 May at lunchtime in B1.5. All items will be priced between 50p and £2.00. Please encourage your child(ren) to pop along to get a home-baked treat!

Time Out for Parents – Children with Additional Needs

Family Matters York is offering a five-week parenting course for parents of children with additional needs.

Sessions last for two hours and are run by two trained facilitators (volunteers or employees) from Family Matters York.

For further details, please take a look at the attached flyer or contact Jen Wootten, Parenting Support Lead E: or T: 07393 147259.

To book a place, please contact the school office.

To find out more about the resources used on all the Family Matters parenting courses, please click here.

Parent Carer Forum

To find out more about events and support available from the Parent Carer Forum, please take a look at their latest newsletter here.

Job of the week – Neurologist

This career focuses on all things to do with the brain! In this job, you’d be looking at how the brain functions and using your understanding of this to diagnose disorders of the brain and help support people through their recovery. Sounds like a career for you? For more information on becoming a neurologist, you can watch this video.

Northern Powergrid’s Youth Insights Panel 2024

Northern Powergrid is currently looking for young people aged 14-19 who would like to apply to become a member of their Insights Panel 2024. Deadline for applications is 10 May 2024.

The Youth Insights Panel will give young people a voice in Northern Powergrid. Perspectives from the panel will shape decision making and future thinking in energy delivery. The panel agenda will be developed in partnership, leading to meaningful and relevant engagement, which will provide a real opportunity for young people to influence important decision making.

Further information can be found here. Anyone interested in joining the panel can apply at:

If you require any further information, please contact:

Opportunities through the National Citizenship Service

Last week our Year 11s had an assembly with Ben Hilton from the National Citizenship Service (NCS), who talked about their ‘Experiences Away From Home’ opportunities.

You can find out more in the attached flyer and letter. Should you have any questions, please email Ben directly E:

York College apprenticeship vacancies

York College is currently advertising a number of apprenticeship vacancies which can be seen on the attached pdf. Each vacancy has a hyperlink to the Apprenticeship Service website, where you will find full job details and where you can submit your application.

Also attached are Hair & Beauty and Construction vacancies, which require an email or phone call directly to the employer.

A note on closing dates: vacancies often close earlier than the stated date, so if you are interested please make sure you apply as soon as you can.

You can also read the attached guidance on how to write a strong application to ensure the best chance of success.

Make Space for Girls Festival

The Make Space for Girls Festival is a month-long programme of over 30 FREE events aimed at 10-18 year olds.  It includes sports and exercise, arts and crafts, health and wellbeing, the performing arts, social awareness events and more. The festival is about creating a welcoming park for teenage girls and reducing the drop off of park use as girls enter their teens. The Festival encourages girls into the public space trying new things, meeting new people and having fun.

The programme goes live tonight for those on the mailing list, and public booking opens on Sunday. You can sign up to the mailing list here.

#WakeUpWednesday – A Parent/Carer Guide to Ofcom’s Media Report 2024

Ofcom’s Media Use and Attitudes Report for 2024 is here. The UK’s regulator for communications publishes a comprehensive annual compendium of the results of several surveys they’ve conducted regarding the activities and experiences of children when interacting with entertainment: from TV to video games to social media platforms.

Contained in the report are numerous statistics relevant to children’s online safety, with data covering a wide array of topics such as young people experiencing harassment, their habits in online games and parents’ most common concerns. National Online Safety’s guide includes some of the key statistics and lays them out in a quick, easy “cheat sheet” for you to consult at your leisure.

Students at Millthorpe School receive lessons about staying safe online but we felt that this would be helpful for you to inform discussions with your child.


If you have significant concerns for the welfare of a child, in addition to being able to contact Mrs Cole, Mrs Cooper or Mr Beever during school hours by emailing, you may wish to make direct contact with the York MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) on T: 01904 551900, option 3. They operate an out-of-hours service so concerns can be raised with them at any time.

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