Birchwood Update 24/09/2018

Birchwood Update week Commencing 24/09/18





School early closure this Thursday, 27 September



On Thursday 27 September, we will hold our School Open Evening from 4.30pm. To prepare the school for our visitors, we will close to learners at 2pm that day












‘See Us in Action’ Open Mornings


One of our school mottos is ‘Pride in our school’ and to show how proud we are of our school, we are inviting prospective new learners for 2019 and their families to join us for a personalised tour of school with our Headteacher.


The tours will take place from next Monday 24 September to Friday 5 October between 9.30am – 12pm and must be booked in advance.


To book your tour email with details of your preferred date and time

Cerys wows at British Fashion week


Cerys in year 10 has again taken to the catwalk as part of The House of Ikons at London Fashion week as she travelled to London for a hectic, glamour-filled weekend.

The House of iKons supports emerging fashion creatives, models and emerging music artists giving them a platform to perform and providing exposure via events in London and abroad.


Cerys took part events supporting British talent in design spread over two day.


On Saturday a team of up and coming young models between the ages of 7 and 14 undertook a series of fashion shots to promote The House of Ikons around London’s most popular tourist hot spots including Buckingham Palace and The London Eye. The shoot drew quite a crowd with many tourists also taking shots of the girls.


 On Sunday, Cerys appeared on the catwalk at the Millennium Gloucester Hotel as part of the House of Ikons fashion show. The show attracted a huge following in the fashion world and press


Cerys’ mum said, “Press from BBC World News to CBN in America attended the show with over 20 photographers at the event. This didn’t faze Cerys one little bit. We are extremely proud of her.”

Well done Cerys on doing so well in pursuing your dream of modelling and acting. We are so proud of you too. Believe in yourself and your abilities and good things will come!



Cake sale in Aid of Macmillan, Friday 28 September


This Friday, 28 September, our Learner Officer Team are holding a cake sale as part of the Big Macmillan Coffee Morning. Cakes will be on sale at both break and lunch time outside college.


They are also appealing for any donations of cakes from learners, staff and parents, so if anyone out there is a star baker please support this great cause and send in your offerings for sale.


 Any donations are to be brought to the meeting room by the admin corridor at 9am on Friday morning.


 Thank you for your support.

Don’t miss the opportunity to Join Youth Speaks! 


What is it? Youth Speaks is a public speaking competition. You can come up with your own ideas and topics that you wish to discuss.


The best teams in the local competition go through to regional and national heats to compete with other schools.


Who can join?  All year groups 7 - 11


When?  After school on Wednesdays, 3-4pm


Where? M5 with Miss Fogg


Birchwood’s take on Beauty and the Beast


A schedule of this week’s rehearsals can be found here





Useful Contacts to keep by your phone:


  • Year 7 Team Office in Art Building

    • Year 7 Team Leader & Officer  – Mrs Butler: Telephone extension 202


  • Year 8 and 9 Team Office is at the top of main corridor

    • Y8 & Y9 Team Officer – Ms Hickson: Telephone extension 290 

    • Y8 Team Leader – Miss McAlinden

    • Year 9 Team Leader – Mrs Jones


  • Year 10 and 11 Team Office is in D&T/EPR building

    • Y10 & Y11 Team Officer -  Mrs Bird: Telephone extension 229

    • Y10 Team Leader – Miss Russell

    • Y11 Team Leader – Ms Gilchrist

BIRCHwood Team talk


We have had a great start to the year for uniform standards. Thank you very much to all parents and carers for your support. Please remember to clearly mark your child’s name and form on their uniform and any personal belongings they bring to school.


This helps our office staff enormously with items of lost property promptly returned to their owner. Thank you again.



 Signing out of school for appointments during the school day


If you wish for your child to sign out of school during the school day, Please ensure that they have a note, a copy of their appointment letter or that you have emailed school on to let us know. thank you for your co-operation.

Keeping your child safe


Safely using the roads as a pedestrian


Some of our learners, particularly our new Year 7s may be travelling to school on their own for the first time. It is important to get into good habits as a pedestrian before the dark evenings arrive.


For hints and tips on pedestrian road safety see here








Extra-curricular timetable


Please take a look at our extracurricular timetable to see what great activities are available for your child to take part in both after school and at lunchtime . 

Click here to access the timetable


Please remember to give your feedback on Parent View


Just a reminder that if you have a spare ten minutes in your day please complete the Ofsted survey about our school. Your views are important to us.


All you need to do is log on here then click on “Give your views” on the top tab and register. It will take about 10 minutes of your time but it will support us to give an accurate picture of our school at our next OFSTED visit and will also allow us to see more of your feedback.


Thank you for your support.



Years 8 - 12, Ski residential trip to France, Friday 15 February – Friday 22 February 2019


For your information, the remaining balance for this trip must be paid by 23 November. Thank you.


Year 7 


Maths Summer Challenge; congratulations Estelle in 7LF


Well done to the 35 Year 7 learners who completed and handed in their Maths Summer Challenge booklets. The winner out of the applicants was Estelle Ighayere from 7LF.


Well done Estelle, what a great start to Year 7, we are very proud of you.

Year 7 photographs; Individual and Form shots.


Please be aware that if you wish to purchase your child’s photographs through school, the last date for orders is tomorrow, Tuesday 25 September.


All orders and payment must be handed to the office by break. Orders received after this date cannot be fulfilled.


Photographs can also be ordered online via Kittle’s website here

Year 7, Show My Homework


Please be aware that Year 7 must use Show My Homework from today. This means the end of the paper planner. If your child experiences any issues with Show My Homework, please ask them to speak to Mr Nickson or Mr Lewis in the IT office opposite M15.


For an easy log on info sheet see here



Year 8 - No specific information

Year 9 - No specific information

Year 10


Year 10 photographs


Please be aware that if you wish to purchase your child’s photographs through school, the last date for orders is tomorrow, Tuesday 25 September. All orders and payment must be handed to the office by break. Orders received after this date cannot be fulfilled.


 Photographs can also be ordered online via Kittle’s website here 


Year 11


Looking to the Future and next steps for Year 11


According to the Government, young people must stay in education or training until at least the age of 18. See the information here


 They must do one of the following:

  • stay in full-time education, for example at a college/6th form

  • start an apprenticeship or traineeship

  • spend 20 hours or more a week working or volunteering, while in part-time education or training


Learners have been following a careers programme throughout year 10 to prepare for this and will continue to learn about post 16 options, through Learning4Life lessons this term, assemblies and presentations.


You are also warmly invited to attend the Birchwood College Open Evening on Thurs 4 Oct 6-8pm where you can find out about the many courses offered here at Birchwood College. There will be a presentation by the Head of College at 6pm.

Warrington Borough Council have also organised a Careers and Apprenticeship Fair which takes place on Thursday  20th September, at Orford Jubilee Neighbourhood Hub, 4pm - 7pm. Last year's event attracted over 40 exhibitors and 650 young people and their parents.


So far exhibitors include: Waterside Training, Toni & Guy, Morthyng, Morrisions, NPL Football Academy, University of Chester, Priestley College, UTC Warrington, Aldi, Prince's Trust, Warrington Youth Club, Unilever, Bell Group, Derwen College, Riverside College & Cronton 6th Form College, National Careers Service, Jobcentre Plus, Little League Sports, Warrington & Vale Royal College, Army Recruiting, Glyndwr University, Babcock International, Ps Coaching, St Helens College and University Centre, Body Focus Training, O2/Telefonica, Mantra Learning, Northwest Education and Training, Lifetime Training, Armstrong Works, Barclays, Street League, Changing Lives in Cheshire, The Growth Company, SGI, Sellafield Ltd, Cunningham Training, People Plus and Careers for Young People.


To confirm attendance and book a slot visit here 


If your son/daughter requires a careers interview to discuss post 16 plans please contact our Careers Adviser, Mrs R Morris

Media Studies tour to Prague 14 - 17 February 2019

Please be aware that the final payment for this trip should be made before 7 December 2018

Birchwood College 


Don’t miss out on our College Open Evening.


Visit our college to talk to our staff and students and see the personalised programmes we are able to offer. This year our results were fantastic, our best ever.

  1. 100% of A-level Geography, Maths and PE students at Birchwood College achieved the top grades of A*-C.

  2.  Our acting students results were 100% Distinction*, the top grade possible, in the Level 3 BTEC Acting course

  3.  Our music students all achieved Double Distinction*, the highest grades possible, in their Level 3 BTEC Music Diploma course. Three of the students are going on to study at the Royal Northern College of Music in September, which is an outstanding achievement. No wonder Birchwood has such a fantastic reputation for the Performing Arts! 

  4. Health & Social Care students at Birchwood College have performed at the highest level. All the BTEC Sub. Diploma and Diploma students have achieved on or above their target grades.

  5. Level 3 BTEC Sport students also achieved some excellent results, many of them receiving a Distinction* grade. Sporting courses continue to be a real strength at Birchwood College, providing a platform for students to progress into the sports industry.

 Just a few reasons why Birchwood College is a force to be reckoned with in post 16 education!




Other School information:


Keeping in touch gets even easier with the introduction of the Xpressions website


We are pleased to announce that Groupcall Xpressions is now available to access on your computer via a website. The login page can be found here.


This gives you a further way, as well as accessing the APP on your mobile phone and tablet, to view information about your child

Once you are set up you will be able to see information such as:

  • Free messages sent by the school delivered to the app

  • Attendance and absence information

  • Attitude to learning (“ATL”) scores for each lesson.

  • Daily/Weekly timetable information

Xpressions is completely free of charge to you and supports Apple iOS, Android devices and now Windows operating system.


In order to use the Xpressions, school must have your correct mobile number and email address on our school system. Forms are available from the school office to check and update your details or you can simply email them to the school. You will need to make sure you keep these details up to date in future to maintain access to the service.


We hope that you take advantage of this new service, which has replaced our ParentsLive system.  If you have any issues or need to know more please contact Mr O’Reilly here at school on



Mobile phone sanctions


We would like to remind parents and carers about the school rules on using mobile phones.


Learners must not use mobile phones between the 8.50am and 3.00pm on school days. Teachers will confiscate mobile phones where a learner breaks this rule. The only exception to this rule is when a member of staff asks learners to use their phones in a lesson to support their learning


Confiscated phone are taken to the school office and process below is followed:


First offence: The phone is locked in the school safe where it can be collected at the end of the day by the learner.


Second offence: As above but a Year Team Leader after school detention is issued and parents and carers are informed.


Third offence: The phone is confiscated and locked in the safe and school inform a parent or carer who are asked to collect the phone at the end of the school day. The learner will also receive an after school detention with a member of our Senior Leadership team.

Children on site out of school hours


As a Community School, we welcome clubs and booked activities to use our facilities and school grounds outside the school day. We have become aware though that there are groups of both learners and ex learners on site in the evenings. Please make your child aware that learners are only allowed on site after the school day, if they are part of an organised and booked group. Thank you for your co-operation.


School Nurse: Please note that the school nurse comes into school every Wednesday from 12.15- 1.30pm and is available in the BSR Mentoring Room if any learners or students have any health related issues they would like to discuss.


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