Celebration of Success evening

We had a fantastic evening on Thursday 26th November - our first 'Celebration of Success' event.  The evening kicked off with a bang when the fantastic Marlwood Samba Band treated us all to the Batucada Fanfare.  Year 13 House Captains Ella Cottle and Thom Harris-Lee guided us through proceedings with style.  Further musical contributions came from Emily Davis, flute soloist, Calvin Preston, guitar soloist and a wonderful sneak preview of our school production 'Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat' with Liam Green leading the choir and orchestra with 'Any dream will do'.  We were also treated to inspiring words from Year 13 House Captains Dominic Webb and Devini De Alwis who reflected on how an education at Marlwood has positively impacted on them.

Of course the main event of the evening was the prize giving.  Recipients were called onto the stage by Rhona Allgood, Chair of Governors, and a long procession of students, present and past, came to receive their prize and hearty applause from the audience.  Over 180 prizes were awarded for attainment/progress in subject areas and for community contribution at Marlwood School.  A huge congratulations to all the winners, whether you were able to attend or not, next year we are determined to make sure everyone can attend.

The evening finished with some lovely refreshments and an opportunity to meet and chat informally.  Thank you to all those of you who have provided feedback on how much you enjoyed the evening.

A huge thanks to all of the staff who contributed to the organisation of this event.

Marlwood School - Time For Reading

Marlwood School receives the Time For Reading - Bronze award.

Marlwood School's commitment to reading continues.  The Time For Reading scheme was set up by the Local Authority to promote an enjoyment of reading.  There were a number of criteria the school had to meet in order to achieve this award, needless to say we successfully met them! The benefits of a high level of reading for our young learners are obvious and we use the Accelerated Reader system to track our students' progress with their reading.  Huge congratulations to all involved and thanks to you as parents for supporting us from home.  We have the Silver Award firmly in our sights.

Parent Feedback Survey

A large number of you took the time at last Wednesday's Parent Consultation to complete our Parent Survey.  This feedback is very useful to us and therefore gratefully received. It was especially pleasing that the overwhelming majority of you stated that you felt your child/children were safe, happy, learning well and making good progress at Marlwood School.  As a consequence you would recommend Marlwood School to others. 

We will make a comprehensive summary of the survey available on the website and in this term's newsletter.

Parent Consultation Evening

Many thanks to all of you who attended on Wednesday 18th November.  Many of you commented on how valuable you found the conversation in helping you to understand your child as a learner.  We have since had a steady supply of feedback by e-mail with the majority reinforcing the view that the event was very useful.  You have made a number of suggestions that you feel would develop the evening further.  These will be taken into consideration by the staff working party.

The Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal

Marlwood School remembers all of the men and women who have fought to protect our freedoms.  Poppies have been sold around the school throughout this term.  On Sunday 8th November we placed a wreath in Thornbury in memory of the fallen.

On the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month the school fell silent for two minutes.

“At the setting of the sun and in the morning, we shall remember them”

House Badge Competition

The house system is becoming an integral part of school life and students are increasingly engaging with their house to develop an identity.  To support this process students have been asked to design a house badge or emblem.  We received almost 100 entries across the four houses.  On Friday 6th November students were invited to judge the entrants to pick a winning design that best represented their house.  The four winning designs have now been identified. 

The winners will spend a day with a local design company, one of our premium business partners, to see their initial ideas developed and transferred to an e-design that will be used for many years to come.  Well done to everyone who contributed.

Visit to the George Spencer Academy

Before half term break I was fortunate enough to be able to visit the 'George Spencer Academy' school in Nottingham with Mr Hardy from the Maths Faculty.  The link to this academy comes about through our 'Whole Education'  network, which is focussed on innovative approaches in education.  A geographical feature of the academy is that their school site is split by a very busy dual carriageway, I'm sure that this has presented some logistical and health and safety barriers for the academy to overcome!

It was an inspirational day at a truly excellent school.  I for one came away impressed by the culture and ethos of the school.  They have very high aspirations for all of their students and believe that through developing the learners they can achieve them - the data certainly validates their approach.  Many of the strategies that have been employed align with ours - not least their focus on student led learning conversations which help students to understand how they can improve their progress and grades.

It was extremely useful to see the impact that the strategies we have employed at Marlwood will have over the coming years.

Year 11 Pre-Public Exams

Our Year 11 Students are in the middle of their pre-public examinations.  They appear focussed, serious and prepared.  We hope that students are taking advantage of the support that is available from teachers, tutors and the 'Marlwood Mountain' group mentors. 

If parents/carers are looking for ways of supporting students from home please do take a look at the 'Revision Blog' which is accessed through the 'VLE Links' tab on the website homepage.

We look forward to seeing how they have performed. 

Staff INSET day

On November the 2nd we enjoyed a very busy and very productive Staff INSET day.  The focus for our training was 'Learning Conversations' which will be a key feature of the Parent Consultation evenings this year.  With input from the 'Achievement For All' organisation, one of our key partners, we feel equipped to hold high quality conversation with students and parents/carers that focus on the student as a learner and the progress they are making in their subjects. 

We are all looking forward to the 18th November and the first of these conversations.


The School attendance continues to be above our target of 95%.  A huge congratulations to every individual student who has attendance above this level, you are currently being celebrated on our attendance notice board out side Student Reception.

Absence from school for a sustained period of time or sporadically is a key reason for student underperformance.  Whilst absence for good reasons can be unavoidable I hope we can all work together to ensure that absence is minimised for the Students at Marlwood School.


The latest version of our Newsletter is available on the School Website under the 'news' tab.  If you haven't seen a copy, please do take a look as it is a comprehensive summary of a very positive Term 1.