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We begin this blog with some wonderful news that we are able to final share with you all – the official Ofsted grading and report has now been published and I am so pleased to announce that we remain ‘Outstanding’.

The week in which Ofsted arrived was my first official week in post. It was so fantastic to see how well all the sites within New Bridge worked so well together. The leaders of these schools supported the staff and pupils to ensure that the outcomes reflected the hard work that has gone in to shape the way in which New Bridge School, Learning Centre and the college site have grown since the last inspection. The whole process opened my eyes to how the three sites work reflectively and supportively in ensuring that the outcomes for all our students help them to reach their end destinations.

This was clearly seen by the inspectors and the report reflects on the hard work from each and every staff member within the schools. The report will be available on the Ofsted website in the next few days and you can also read it here, but I thought I’d share some of the positive comments from the report:

“There is a well-designed curriculum from Year 7 through to the end of sixth form, and beyond. This ensures that pupils can make an exceptional start in their next stage of education, employment or learning”

“Students in the sixth form benefit from an exceptionally well-planned curriculum. This includes the opportunity to undertake supported work experience or internships. The school uses a variety of placements in the local area. In the school’s own café, students showed us how they could apply their knowledge in mathematics to add up the cost of items on the menu. Following their internships, some students have gained paid employment”

This leads me onto sharing with you what the students have been up to this week, starting with our job coach Bethany..

This week our update comes from Paddy from Digit4ll. Paddy has been coming to the RSPCA shelter on work experience since September and has done really well with what he needs to do. In the last few weeks we have been looking at Health and Safety and how this applies to the workplace. Here is Paddy showing us what we do at the RSPCA to follow their health and safety procedures.

When we first arrive to the RSPCA we have to to sign in every morning when we get there. I know the importance of why we sign the register in case of a fire and I know where to assemble at the fire point.

After we have signed in we then go and put our volunteer t-shirts on, this is important so that any staff or visitors that come to the RSPCA will know who we are and why we are there. Once all this is done we go downstairs to the cattery where we decide which cat we are going to work with. It’s important that we look at the board as this means we can see which cats we are able to spend time with – we know that the cats which have ‘staff only’ next to them are too scared or nervous and need staff that they know to help them become ready to become rehomed.

After we have chosen which cat we are going to work with, we put a tick next to it and our initials. We do this so staff and volunteers are aware that this cat has had nurture time and to look for a different cat. Once we have chosen the cat that we are going to spend our time with, we then go and put our PPE on; this is important to help protect both the cats from us and us from the cats. We know which room to find the PPE in and what we need.

Once we have our PPE on it’s time go and spend some time with the cats! The nurturing time that the cats all have is some of the most important time of the day for the cats and as you can see, we have been giving them some quality nurturing time!

Once we have done our nurture time with the cats, we take off the PPE that we have been wearing and put it in the bin; it’s important that we do this as we need to prevent any cross-contamination between the cats and each time we go in with a cat we put fresh PPE on. When this has been done, we write our observation of the cats and what we have seen when we were in their cat pen with them. We need to write down exactly what has happened in the pen as this can help the staff find the right home for the cats and if any issues come up they can look at the observation reports to see if there are any correlations between any issues and their behaviours.

After we have done this it’s time to go back to Medtia, but before we leave we make sure that we put our volunteer tops in the wash basket ready for a wash and sign out so the staff know that we aren’t onsite in case of a fire.

As you can see above, we are able to demonstrate really good use of health and safety at the RSPCA and follow all the health and safety procedures that they have in place. We have all received positive feedback from the staff at the RSPCA and have settled in really well!

Now our job coach Diane has news of Dominic, one of our pre internship students..

A Day in the Life of Dominic
The Guinness Partnership – Cafe

After travelling independently from Medtia to the Guinness Partnership I arrive at the cafe at 10am ready to start my work placement. At the reception area I collect my badge and sign in, this enables me to go around the building as I have an electronic fob..

Once I arrive at the cafe which is on the 3rd floor I wash my hands, put on my uniform and get ready to start my day. In the mornings I check all the vending machines and make a list to restock with drinks and chocolate bars. This involves checking the dates and making sure everything is in the correct order, as pricing varies with all the drinks and sandwiches.

The vending machines are also based on floor 1 and I make a list of what is needed and restock, sometimes twice a day as there are hundreds of people who work here.

Another really important job that I have been asked to do is flush the hot drinks machine daily, make sure that all the compartments are clean, refill with ingredients and check that all the taps and pipes are in good working order. Lotfi the Catering Manager lets me have a Hot Chocolate – well, we have to test and make sure it tastes right!

The cafe can get really busy during the day. I make sure the iPads are charged as these are required for inputting the cost of items and taking money.

I am confident in dealing with money, customer service and using the tills.

Here are some of the other tasks that I do during the day..

I am enjoying my placement working at Guinness, it’s a great place to work and I would like to work here in the future.

Our Lumenus students have also been hard at work, as Miss Begum explains..

A day in the life of Bethany
Lumenus Key Stage 5 Pathway

Today is audition day everyone! I’m so excited to audition as I have been practising very hard for my audition piece. Here is a run through my day.

I arrived at Medtia in the morning and we did our morning routine. We got on the New Bridge bus and Wayne took us down to school.

When we arrived at school we joined KS4 and we did our mobilisation warm up and played lots of fun warm up games. Once we were all warmed up we practised some songs from We Will Rock You (which is our school show if you didn’t know already). Mrs Wilson played the piano as we all got the chance to sing a verse from ‘Don’t stop me now’. I really enjoyed singing and I have been singing this song all week long!

And then it was audition time, the moment I have been waiting for! I partnered up with Poppy and auditioned for the part of Killer Queen. Killer Queen is such a cool character. I practised really hard and I will be happy with any part that I am given!

In the afternoon we went through the script and everyone had a turn at reading. It was exciting to see the script for the first time and to discover all the characters!

We headed back to Medtia at the end of the day and I got ready to go home. It has been a super exciting day for me and I can’t wait to find out what part everyone’s been given!

Congratulations to our 2 ‘Workers of the Week’, our Bridging the Gap student Patrick and Sarah from our pre internship pathway – well done!!

Before we finish the blog, it is wonderful to be able to share with you that one of our Digit4ll students has been shortlisted as a Finalist at the British Education Awards 2020 in recognition of his brilliant academic results and extracurricular success within the Vocational (Special Achievement) category. The award ceremony takes place on the 30th January at the Hilton hotel in Manchester.

The British Education Awards is a national event with nominations from across the country, there is stiff competition with extremely high quality nominations – and they are all judged by an independent panel of judges, so we are incredibly proud to have come this far, fingers crossed! Further information can be found here.

Over the next couple of weeks I will be sharing with you snippets of Jordon’s life story so far. This will help you to understand his journey and why he was nominated.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend,

Head of Key Stage 5 Pathways

Click here for this week’s news from Graham

You can view our previous blog entries here

News from the Learning Centre and New Bridge School can be found here


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