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As some of you may know, I have been known to partake in a little singing (and at times acting) in my spare time. So I was delighted to join in the first get-together of our very own Learning Centre choir headed up by Mr Thompson and Miss Wilson. A large number of students joined in and it was clear they loved every minute. The choir will also be taking part in the New Bridge Christmas Concert on the evening of Tuesday 11th December. Letters have gone home to parents and we hope lots of our parents, carers and friends will be able join us on the night. Here’s just a taster of our wonderful new choir getting warmed up..

There are times when I’m walking around the Learning Centre that I feel immensely privileged to be working with our young people. In today’s assembly we acknowledged the caring, helpful and increasingly mature side of our students, those like Nathan W. & Imnann who continually act as buddies to their peers in IB and those taking a lead within Sports like Kyle, Nathan W. & Sabiha who this week, in Mr Smith’s absence, acted as Sports Leaders, encouraging their fellow students in different activities. Sabiha did a great job helping to set up, organise and teach the PE group..

Continuing with the sporting theme, as promised there was a much anticipated rematch between Mr Hagan and Jermaine on the bleep test. They were also joined by Mr Edwards from the Nurture Group. They were soon on their own after everyone else had pulled out and, although clearly tiring, they remained determined and all three made it to the end..

I’ve now been tasked by Jermaine to set a new challenge – he not only wants to beat Mr Hagan and Mr Edwards, he is now looking to match Mr Smith. Good luck with that one, Jermaine!

I’m delighted to announce the launch of our first Learning Centre football team. Our very own Kyle has been tasked with the training and selection of ‘LCFC’ (Learning Centre Football Club) and he is already making plans with Mr Smith for their first match.

I managed to catch manager Kyle between training sessions and asked him how the plans are going so far and if it has been a challenge. Kyle filled me in..

Things are going well at the moment; I’ve already got lots of names and people are really excited. We’ve already had one nosebleed and a few knocks, however we have stuck together as a team. I’m proud of the enthusiasm the players are all showing in practice and I’m looking forward to our first match. I’ve found it a bit of a challenge at times, however I’m sure even Sir Alex struggled at the start, but with determination and a good team, he went on to achieve great success.

Kyle would like to thank staff for their support, especially whilst Mr Smith is off. We’ll keep you updated with the results as they happen. Good luck to everyone taking part!

This week we’ve had more pupils from both New Bridge School and Spring Brook accessing the Hortus programme. Today I observed the New Bridge pupils working really hard and obviously enjoying themselves. Mr Blackman explained that they have been digging out the compost from one of the bays and then tipping it onto the rotovated beds before raking them level..

I caught up with them later, here are just a few of their comments:

  • “I always listen to the teacher, I enjoyed tipping compost” ~ Umer
  • “I like gardening and I always listen carefully to instructions” ~ Subhan
  • “I like gardening, it’s great digging with a spade” ~ Adeel
  • “I like gardening because it’s great. I liked digging today” ~ Jason

Here’s a report from our job coach, Miss Whitehead..

When we arrive we have a chat about what we are going to be doing for the session. We then put on our PPE and make sure we tidy up our personal belongings.

Today we have today been digging the compost, piling it into the wheelbarrow and moving it to the beds. The students have all been working really hard on their work experience. We have now done three weeks and Mr Blackman has been fantastic at supporting the young people.

Staying with our horticultural theme, Mr Jackson’s IB class have been working on ‘The Secret Garden’ this term, although possibly not quite the version you might be familiar with – find out more here!

I’d like to say thank you to Harry who again fed me today. I have to be honest, my initial thoughts when I was told it was a Mexican Bean Burger were mixed, however I have to say that is one of the best dishes I have tried so far this year and I would definitely recommend this recipe from the BBC Good Food guide which can be found here.

Mrs Gillett was unsure if the students would like this, however she has been pleasantly surprised that all the groups have made and liked this very tasty and healthy burger. She said of her Year 13 group,

“After much moaning at making Veg Burgers the whole group ate them. Well done!”

We even got Jermaine cooking!! Joseph looked particularly pleased with his burger..

..and Terry and Jacob worked hard at washing up. Well done guys!

You may remember how last week we started our Tuesday Health Walk around the Learning Centre – we thought you might like to see some pictures of our morning ramble..

The Learning Centre staff team and myself would like to say what a pleasure it was to meet our families at Parents’ Evening on Tuesday. It’s always great to celebrate how far our young people have come on their journey with us and it’s also an exciting time as we start that journey with our Year 12 students and families. If anyone could not make it and would like to speak to key staff, please do let us know. I’d like to thank all our families for your continued support, it is this relationship which is vital in ensuring our students thrive during their time with us.

As promised, we now have the total monies raised by the different activities at the Learning Centre for Children in Need. I’m pleased to announce our total of £109.64. Mr Schiavo’s ice creams raised a further sum of £68 both from our donations and the other places he went on to visit across Manchester after coming to the Learning Centre…….which he then doubled to £140.00. We’re very grateful for his support (and those delicious ice creams!)

A big ‘Well done!!’ to everyone, thank you for your support!

Have a great weekend,



You can find Gavin’s blog for the school site here

For news on our Key Stage 5 pathway groups at Medtia Square please click here

Click here to read this week’s news from Graham

You can find my previous blog posts here


St Martins Road, Fitton Hill, Oldham, OL8 2PZ

School Hours

M-F: 8am – 4pm
Weekends: Closed

Phone & Email

0161 883 2402