Birchwood Update 20/5/2019


Birchwood Update week Commencing 20/5/2019



Important dates for your diary:


23 May - Y13 Acting students present a Musical Theatre Extravaganza 7.30 in Performing Arts (£3 and £2 on the door)


6 June - Y12 Music students present live music from the 80s onwards 7.30 in Performing Arts (£3 and £2 on the door)


13 JuneYear 12 Which Way Now event


14 June Year 11’s last day in school. See Year 11 section below for more details


Week of 17 June Years 7 -10 Examination week


27 June Year 9 Performance Review Evening, 3.30pm – 7pm


28 June Inset Day (Warrington Walking day)


1 & 2 July – Year 6 Induction days at BCHS


2 July - Year 6 Induction Evening, 4.30pm – 7pm


4 JulyYear 11 Prom at Hallmark Warrington


9 JulyYear 7 Celebration Evening, 6.30 – 7.30pm


11 July - Year 8 Celebration Evening, 6.30 – 7.30pm


16 July - Year 9 Celebration Evening, 6.30 – 7.30pm


17 JulyKS3 show – Matilda, 7pm, Performing Arts Centre. AMMENDED DATE


18 July - Year 10 Celebration Evening, 6.30 – 7.30pm

Rhianna triumphs in the prestigious 2019 Clapperboard Awards


In October we reported that Rhianna in Year 13 was offered a place on the BFI (British Film Institute) Clapperboard Programme in Liverpool. This is a much sought after opportunity and offered Rhianna the chance to work with professional filmmakers creating films from scripting to the big screen.


We are incredibly proud to announce that after taking part in the programme Rhianna  as part of a production team of four other budding film makers created a short film entitled ‘404’ a futuristic drama in the nature of ‘Black Mirror’ which has been was awarded ‘Best Film’ at the 2019 Clapperboard Film Awards.


The judging panel of four included Nik Powell OBE, British businessman, and one of the co-founders of the Virgin Group with Richard Branson, and screenwriter Jan McVerry, a long-time writer on Coronation Street. They had a choice of 11 films so we are delighted that Rhianna’s film was victorious.


The award ceremony took place in the Capstone Theatre, Liverpool’s International Arts Venue on 3 May, where Rhianna and team were presented with their trophy by actress Sacha Parkinson, best known for playing the role of Sian Powers in Coronation Street.

If you would like to watch Rhianna’s film it can be found here.


Congratulations Rhianna on your continued success, we know that after leaving our College you will continue to work successfully in the film and media Industry.




Year 9 are welcomed warmly by the Warrington Sikh community


Last Wednesday, Year 9 learners had the opportunity to find out first-hand what it is like to be a member of the Sikh religion when they were warmly welcomed into to Sikh Gurdwara in Latchford.


This was a fascinating opportunity for the learners to learn about Sikhism, tie some turbans and take part in a Langar. Langar is the term used in Sikhism for the community kitchen in a Gurdwara where a free meal is served to all the visitors, without distinction of religion, caste, gender, economic status or ethnicity.


The food was a traditional Punjabi meal where everyone sat at the same level to show that we are all equal.

Learners were a credit to the school and really did show what BCHS is all about!  They were polite, listened well, took part in all activities, and demonstrated our respect for diversity and our love for learning about new cultures and religions.


Thank you to our friends at the Gurdwara for a lovely afternoon.



The flowers are blooming in the Locking Stumps Eco Garden with the help of our Eco–Committee.


Last week members of our Eco committee continued their successful eco partnership with Locking Stumps Primary School as they helped Year 4 children to create a beautiful eco garden from plastic bottles that had been collected on our successful litter pick last month.

The bottles were cleaned and prepared for painting by Miss Pennington in our DT department and the learners, Miss Connor and Mrs Hughes led the children in the activity.


Learners at Locking Stumps painted some creative designs to make their garden colourful and while the flowers were drying, Birchwood learners read ‘one plastic bag’ to the class. The book told the true story of how one African woman began a movement to recycle the plastic bags that were polluting her community.


The results of the joint venture were brilliant as you can see from the photos and are a blaze of beautiful plastic flowers that have pride of place at the Primary school.



Lexy really is a rising star in cheerleading


Last week we had great news about Lexy in 7LF after she competed in the Legacy Dance and Cheer Competition in Leeds.  Not only did Lexy and her team Rising Stars Cheerleading win 1st place in their age group, they went on to come first in the overall grand championship for the whole competition.


The Rising Stars are based in Stockport but hold training sessions every Thursday at Birchwood Community High School. Lexy is very proud of her role in the team and is dedicated and hardworking, really giving her all for the success of the team.


After their fantastic success last week, Lexy and her team at Rising Stars aim to compete in the Cheerleading World Championships, which are to be held in a few years in Orlando, Florida.


With a keen will to win, and a few years of training left, we wish Rising Stars and Lexy every success and look forward to you bringing home a trophy. Keep up the good work Lexi!




Important notice: Birchwood’s Matilda, change of performance date


Due to staff absence, Matilda will not be able to go ahead on Tuesday the 21 May as advertised. The performing arts staff are aware of how much work has gone in to preparing the show and do not want the learners to miss out on this fantastic performance opportunity but as we currently must prioritise older year groups and exam classes, we would like to postpone the show until Wednesday 17 July at 7.00pm.


For those of you who have paid for tickets, we will simply re-print tickets with the new date on.


If you have already paid for tickets but will be unable to attend the performance on the new date, please get in touch with Carol Walsh via email here (


We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause but in the meantime if you would like to join us for our outstanding Birchwood College students’ assessed performances, you will be most welcome, details below


Thursday 23 May - Y13 Acting students present a Musical Theatre Extravaganza 7.30 in Performing Arts (£3 and £2 on the door)


Thursday 6 June - Y12 Music students present live music from the 80s onwards 7.30 in Performing Arts (£3 and £2 on the door)



 Keeping your child safe


Social media plays a huge role in most young people’s lives, and over the next few updates we will look at the most popular social networks that young people use. We hope the resources will support you to keep your child safe in today’s digital world.




Minecraft is a game that retains its popularity with young people. The game lets you build and create a virtual world using building blocks. Other activities include using the multiplayer function to explore the worlds created by other users and to combat, chat and play with them.

To find out what you need to know about Minecraft and to ensure that your child is using it safely, 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

 Learners of the Week


Well done to the learners below who were selected Learners of the Week for last week by our languages, science and English department.







Year 8 


Year 8 Girls HPV vaccination


Today, all girls in Year 8 will receive a permission slip in their form box for the HPV vaccinations that will take place in school in June. Can you please check that your child has handed this to you and please read and return your permission for your child to receive the vaccination immediately please.

The documents can also be found here


More details regarding the date for vaccination will follow shortly.


Year 9 -


Year 9 Performance Review Evening Thursday 27 June, 3.30pm – 7.00pm


This valuable event gives you the opportunity to speak with subject teachers to discuss progress and achievement at a vital stage in their school life.


Your child should have brought home a letter regarding booking an appointment, which you can also find here. 


We hope to see you all on the evening.

Year 10 - No specific information

Year 11


Important information Year 11 parents, regarding arrangements for Year 11 in their final weeks in school


A letter has been given to your child today in their form box with regard to the arrangements for their final weeks in school.  A copy of the letter can be found here


Looking to the Future and next steps for Year 11


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

If your child is considering the apprenticeship route please be aware that many apprenticeships are now being advertised for school leavers on the site, Find an apprenticeship, which can be found here

Important reminder for parent and carers of Year 11 regarding Prom


Year 11 Leaver’s Prom, Thursday 4 July 2019


Parentpay will be open for last minute Prom bookings until tomorrow evening, Tuesday 21 May. On Wednesday orders will be placed and final numbers confirmed to the hotel. Orders cannot be taken after this date so if Prom has slipped your mind please ensure that you place your bookings immediately.

A letter with booking details can be found here, alternatively your child can collect a copy from the general office.



 A letter with booking details can be found here, alternatively your child can collect a copy from the general office.



A date for your Diary.Year 11 last day in school, Friday 14 June 2019


For your information, the last day that your child will be in school is Friday 14 June. On that day there will be a science examination in the morning followed by our Leavers Celebration Assembly.


Please be aware however, that there are still 2 GCSE examinations after this date - German on 17 June and Polish on 19 June.


More details will be sent out nearer the time.

2019 Examinations


A full timetable of all summer examinations has been released and can be found on our website here


Results days 2019


A level/BTEC - Thursday 15 August 2019


GCSE/BTEC – Thursday 22 August 2019


More details will follow with regard to collecting your child’s results nearer the date.

Birchwood College 


2019 Examinations


A full timetable of all summer examinations has been released and can be found on our website here


Results days 2019


A level/BTEC - Thursday 15 August 2019


GCSE/BTEC – Thursday 22 August 2019


More details will follow with regard to collecting your child’s results nearer the date.


Other School information:


Please support us in ensuring that our facilities are the best they can be


Please be aware of rules regarding learners being on the school site outside school hours.


Some damage has been caused to the site and a learner has been hurt trying to climb over the fencing. We would like to remind you that learners are not allowed on the school site at any time unless they are with a member of staff. The rule about this is below:  


Unless there is a member of staff running a special extra-curricular activity, the school site is out of bounds for all learners on weekdays after school clubs have finished (usually after 4.30pm) and at weekends and during school holidays. 


Please support us by making you child aware of this rule so that our facilities are the best they can be for us to use in school time and for the community to book and use out of school hours.


Thank you for your support in this matter



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 Phones, Earphones and Speakers in school.


Phones and headphones may be brought in to school but must be kept in bags or zipped in blazer pockets out of view at all times. Learners must not use phones at any time on the site between the bells at 8.50 and 3.00pm unless they are asked to do so by a teacher in a lesson for a reason that is related to learning. In this case, the teacher will issue instructions on the use of phones or headphones, which must then be followed. If a phone is out during the school day, even to check the time, this will be confiscated. There is a staged system of sanctions and mobile phones, earphones and speakers are counted as identical items.  If you think a learner is using a smart watch in the same way as a mobile phone, please speak to their Year Team Leader or Year Team Officer. 


If a learner is concerned about an issue at home and feels they need to speak to a parent, they need to go to the Year Team Office and discuss this with Year Team Officer. Staff should confiscate mobile technology items that are visible and in use during the times specified.  They should be taken to the school office.  The system of sanctions are:


Stage 1 - First offence

  • The item is confiscated and locked in the school safe

  • The item is collected by the learner at the end of the day

  • One behaviour point is issued by the Office

Stage 2 - Second offence 

  • The item is confiscated and locked in the school safe

  • The item is collected by the learner at the end of the day

  • One behaviour points issued by the Office

Stage 3 - Third Offence

  • The item is confiscated and locked in the school safe

  • Parents/carers are informed and asked to collect the phone at the end of the school day

  • One behaviour points is issued by the Office.

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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