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Acting Headteacher Update

24th May 2024

Dear Parents/Carers

As I am sure you are now all aware, I will be taking over as Headteacher at Philips High School from the 1st September 2024. I am honoured to take up this role and I look forward to working closely with you to ensure that our children receive the highest quality of education in a supportive, respectful and ambitious school environment.

I am also pleased to announce that the DfE have now approved Philips High School joining the Oak Learning Partnership. These are exciting times for the school, and I look forward to working with the Trust to benefit our children and achieve academic success.

With these two imminent changes in mind, I would like to take this opportunity to make you aware of some additional changes that I will be putting into place over the coming months.

Education

My primary goal is to foster an educational setting where every student can thrive academically, socially, and personally. My vision for the school is built on three fundamental pillars: educational excellence, disciplined behaviour, and high standards of school uniform, underpinned by our STAR values.

I am passionate about providing all our pupils with a high-quality education regardless of any barriers they may face.  I want Philips High School to be a place where our children feel safe, supported and happy.

In the Autumn term, I will be reviewing the curriculum, to ensure that each child reaches their full potential. The curriculum will be designed to inspire critical thinking, creativity and application of knowledge and skills, preparing our children for not only academic success, but life beyond the classroom.

Excellent Expectations

Everyone at Philips High School has a right to learn and work without disruption. We will therefore be making some changes to our already strong School Behaviour Policy, and we will not tolerate any forms of behaviour that impacts on the learning of others.

A disciplined environment is essential for effective learning. I will insist on high expectations and uphold a strong code of conduct in school. Positive behaviour will be encouraged and rewarded, while any issues will be dealt with promptly and proportionately. My goal is to create a safe and nurturing environment, where our children feel valued and motivated to do their best.

Mobile Phones

As per Government Guidance dated February 2024 and as of the 1st July 2024, Philips High School will become a “mobile phone-free school environment”. This is in line with schools nationally. This means that although pupils can still carry a phone to and from school, they will not be permitted to use their phones on the school premises (inside and outside of the building) throughout the school day.  This includes during lessons, the time between lessons, break times and lunchtime.  A new School Mobile Phone Policy will be in force from July and you will be provided with a copy of this after half term. This policy will also extend to smart watches and ear buds of any type. As the expectation is that phones will be switched off, pupils will not be able to use them to check the time at any point in the school day. By doing this, we expect our pupils to improve social interactions and reduce the number of safeguarding concerns which are directly linked to mobile phones. Studies have shown that pupils make more progress in lessons when they are not distracted by phones.

Uniform

Uniforms play a crucial role in fostering a sense of community and belonging. They help reduce distractions and peer pressure, allowing students to focus on their studies. We will maintain high standards for our school uniform, expecting all students to adhere to the policy. Wearing the uniform with pride reflects our collective commitment to excellence and respect for our school values. From the 1st September 2024, Air Force One style trainer shoes and similar alternatives will be banned from school. In collaboration with the other Headteacher’s in Bury, we have decided that trainer style footwear should be banned from school, removing the pressure on families to buy expensive footwear during a time when a families’ finance is already being squeezed. Guidance regarding footwear will be sent out next half term.

Parental Engagement

s part of developing our working relationship with parents, I intend to hold “breakfast mornings” where parents will be invited in to school to informally meet with myself and the Senior Leadership Team about any issues you may have etc.  Further information regarding this will follow in due course.

Thank you for your support and cooperation as we embark on this exciting journey together. I look forward to my role as Headteacher and working with you and your child(ren) to make Philips High School a place of excellence and opportunity for all.

Yours sincerely

 Mr C Hibbert
ACTING HEADTEACHER

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