A very big thank you to all the staff and pupils for their support at Sixth Form Open Evening on Wednesday 13 October. We hope it gave our Year 11s and their parents plenty of useful food for thought. If you missed the evening, information will be sent to you directly and Year 11 pupils will be fully supported through the process.

With the end of this half term upon us, we wish everyone a good half term break and look forward to seeing you back at school on Monday 1 November.

Watch out for the next edition of the Flagpole on Friday 12 November.

Click here to email The Flagpole.


Headmaster's Message

Letter From The Headmaster

As we come to the end of the first half of term, I would like to thank you all for your support.

Trying to run the school “normally” has been a real challenge, but as is normal, all parts of the community have pulled together extremely well.

You will be aware that the number of positive cases of Covid-19 has been on the rise in some year groups in the past week or so and we have also seen a worrying rise amongst our staff with 13 positive cases now this term.

We held another meeting with representatives from Public Health England and the Local Authority this afternoon and they are recommending that ALL Year 10 and Year 11 pupils eligible to do so undertake a PCR test this weekend. They were optimistic that with this measure, the half term “fire-break” and the recent vaccinations taking effect, our case numbers will stabilise and hopefully reduce so that we can carry on next term without having to take any additional or more radical measures.

Please can I also ask that all year groups continue with the twice-weekly lateral flow testing and report in any positive cases to post@princethorpe.co.uk over the Half Term break (please be aware that we will not be able to undertake any track and tracing activities over the Half Term period from next week).

It is really important that all pupils undertake a lateral flow test on Sunday 31 October before returning to school.

Looking ahead, we are optimistic that events such as Prize Giving on Friday 19 November, the school production of Holes at the end of November, and our House Singing Competition and Carol Services at the end of term can go ahead as planned.

Again, many thanks for your continued support, I hope you and your families manage to have a good half term break.

E D Hester


Senior Hockey Girls Are In Fine Form

The Girls First XI Hockey team have had an absolutely fantastic start to the season. They are currently on a six-game unbeaten run with recent wins against Solihull (3-1), Ratcliffe (3-0), KES Birmingham (3-2), Kimbolton (7-0), Bablake King Henry's (4-2) and just this week an excellent win against the formidable Bromsgrove School (4-2).

Team Coach, Rachael Mack, said, “The girls are just going from strength to strength. They play an excellent technical game and work really well together as a team anticipating and capitalising on opportunities. The match on Tuesday was intense.”

The matches will keep coming thick and fast after half term, with an important cup match away against Rugby on Tuesday 3 November and a 'Friday Night Lights' match, with charity BBQ against Wellingborough on Friday 5 November.

Congratulations girls and keep up the great play!

Playing for the team this year are: Charlotte Brotherton, Anneliesa Douglas, Jess Evans, Eve Farquharson, Sophie Gray, Molly Harper, Millie Hemmings (Captain), Tilly Houghton, Mia Johnson, Jess Mackenzie, Lucia McCosker-New, Molly Minshull, Immy Morley, Evie Phillips, Emilia Scimeca, Grace Thomas, Lara Tripp-Smith, Sophie Tudor and Alice Whittaker

Emmi Accepted Onto New York Academy Of Sciences Programmes

Princethorpe College Year 9 pupil, Emmi, has been accepted into the prestigious New York Academy of Sciences Junior Academy and onto the 1000 Girls, 1000 Futures mentoring programme. Both programmes offer Emmi the opportunity to join virtual learning communities and work with STEM experts and leaders from around the world.

With only 1000 places available world-wide, Emmi’s selection bears testament to the strength of her application which included an essay on biological engineering and applying the principles of biology to real life situations.

As a member of the Junior Academy Emmi will take part in project-based learning, creating solutions to real-world issues. Emmi will participate in two 10-week challenges working in an international team alongside STEM experts. Emmi’s first challenge begins next week, and she is already enjoying networking with her peers in India and the USA as she prepares for the first project.

As part of the 1000 Girls, 1000 Futures programme, Emmi will participate in one-to-one mentoring with scientists and engineers, take coursework modules focusing on skills such as leadership, communication, and critical thinking and have the opportunity to network with peers and female STEM professionals.

Helen Pascoe-Williams, Da Vinci Co-Ordinator, commented, “It is fantastic to see Emmi’s passion and excellence in the realm of STEM recognised on an international level, we know she will make the most of this wonderful opportunity to further her knowledge and skills. We look forward to hearing news about the challenges Emmi works on and the solutions her team propose.”

Princethorpe College Is Full STEAM Ahead

STEAM education is an approach to learning that uses Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics as access points for guiding and developing pupil studies. Previously known as STEM (see article), the inclusion of ARTS subjects introduces skills such as wonder, critique, inquiry and innovation that delivers a more rounded integrated learning experience.

At Princethorpe College, STEAM encompasses all these subjects, and others also contribute to the development of STEAM associated skills, such as foreign cinema in MFL, the significance of inventions and their influence on History and the evolution of digital technology and its impact on Business Studies and Economics.  

For Princethorpe pupils particularly interested in STEAM, accessing learning and development opportunities is now easier than ever through the College pupil and staff STEAM Team. Here pupils can research and find events to attend, competitions to enter, places to visit, STEAM resources and share their ideas through the TEAM. They can even propose their own opportunities for learning via the TEAM. 

For younger pupils, getting involved with a broad range of STEAM activities helps them to find their interests and focus their future aspirations. As pupils move into Key Stage 4/5 active involvement in STEAM activities is great evidence for their CV and personal statement for University and job applications. 

Opportunities at Princethorpe include or have included in the past: 

  • School Competitions: Science Essay Writing Competition and the Anatomical Art Competition 
  • External Competitions: UKMT Maths Challenge, Science Olympiads, Arkwright Scholarship (Design Technology) 
  • Lectures: Warwick Christmas Lectures, subject specific lectures, visiting external speakers  
  • Educational visits: MAD (Mechanical Art & Design) museum, Leicester Space Centre and JLR (Jaguar Land Rover) 
  • Co-curricular clubs: Forensic Science, Coding Club and VEX IQ Robotics 
  • Hands-on experiences: ‘Careers in the Games industry’ event that includes designing your own computer game 

The economy of the future requires STEAM skills; the College is committed to providing pupils with opportunities to develop their STEAM passions and preparing pupils for jobs that don’t even yet exist.

We would very much like to hear from any OPs or parents who feel they could help support STEAM at Princethorpe College, especially as a speaker or by offering industry visits - if this is you, please contact Dan Lee at danlee@princethorpe.co.uk. We would welcome your ideas.

Dan Lee
Head of Physics and STEAM co-ordinator 


Success For Runners In Local Round Of ESAA Cross Country Cup

Princethorpe College was delighted to welcome runners from ten Warwickshire schools on Monday 4 October for the county qualifying round of the English Schools Athletics Association’s (ESAA) Cross Country Cup.

Runners competed in the Junior, Intermediate and Senior Boys and Girls races on a course that led the competitors out around the College’s playing fields. Despite the forecast the weather remained fair, which for cross country, gave the competitors perfect running conditions.

Competing were: Princethorpe College, Kenilworth School, Alcester Grammar School, Lawrence Sheriff School, Myton School, Southam College, King’s High School For Girls, The Kingsley School, King Edward VI School and Stratford Girls’ Grammar School.

Congratulations to the Inter Girls who finished in first place overall, with Kate Pomerleau in 2nd, Ava Farren 4th, Hannah Wildey 13th, Olivia Bacon 14th, Pip Evans 25th and Kaena Wasley 26th.

The Junior Boys who finished in second place, with Charlie Atkins 2nd, Sam Grindal 10th, William Smith 12th, Connor Darcy 16th, Henry Fox 20th and Soren Wasley 23rd.

The Inter Boys finished in third place with Felix Batty 3rd, Eddie Arkesden 11th, Albert Jackson-Bettles 14th, Jamie Capelett 17th, Ned Roach 22nd and Zach Hawkins 26th.

The Senior Girls also finished in third place, with Grace Darcy 5th, Molly Minshull 11th, Julia Loftus 13th, Jess Evans 16th, Lottie O'Connor 18th and Emma Sarkies 22nd.

The Junior Girls finished fourth, with Lily Hunter 9th, Rosa Davis 13th, Martha Summers 23rd, Jessie Murphy 30th and Ellie Maffey 37th.

Competing for the Senior Boys were Zak Johnson who finished in 11th, Alex Matheson 13th and Daniel Webb 17th.

Well done to all the participants for their excellent efforts - it really was fantastic to host the competition once again.

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European Day Of Languages Competition

This year the MFL and House teams challenged staff and pupils to take part in fun language-based activities. Staff were all encouraged to use a foreign language in their lessons, either speaking it or including it in the lesson activity with Princethorpe's pupils acting as judges and the results of the European Day of Languages staff competition are now in!

In 3rd place - Alef Rosenbaum, Maths department.
Mr Rosenbaum showed off his knowledge of French during his maths lessons by counting and giving instructions in his favourite language. Some pupils said "it was beautiful".

In 2nd place - Dr Emilie Onyekwe, Science department.
Dr Onyekwe left her Year 11 astounded when they realised that she spoke French fluently. "I didn't know that she was fluent; this was an unexpected surprise!" shared one of them.

In 1st place - Meg O'Gorman, RS department.
Miss O'Gorman not only used French in her lesson, but she included it in her class notebook, showing a skilled marriage between blended learning and languages. Her pupils loved being called "petits pois" and one could not help saying that they felt it was an amazing lesson, as always.

Berenice Galano, Teacher of MFL, said, "A huge well done to all that took part in this first staff competition for European Day of Languages and rising to the challenge of immersion learning. A special mention also to Mrs Moon, Mrs Pascoe-Williams and Mrs Munford who must be commended for the resources created for the occasion and their effort in making this day special for all."

World Porridge Day Fundraiser For Mary’s Meals

Princethorpe College pupils and staff marked World Porridge Day on Wednesday 6 October by raising money for the Scottish charity Mary’s Meals. Championed by our Sixth Formers and Assistant Head of Sixth Form, Rod Isaacs, pupils participated in a posse of Scottish and porridge fundraising fun.

At break time pupils were invited to dig deep and purchase a traditional Scottish breakfast, a pot of porridge, with a selection of luxurious toppings. Queues quickly formed for the steaming pots lined up along the counter in the Refectory.

The Scottish theme continued out in the grounds where only the brave participated in the annual William Wallace Welly Wanging Challenge. Organised by year group, there were plenty of contenders lined up ready to enthusiastically fling, hurl, chuck and toss the wellies across the fields.

A new school record was set with two pupils tying with matching throws of 34.10m each, congratulations to Upper Sixth, Charlie Crean, and to Year 10, Freddie Roberts, both of Benet House. Just behind them was Ed Sharpe with a throw of 33.5m for More. Lower Sixth, Molly Wincott-Thomas, also for More, threw her welly 23.3m to claim the longest throw for the girls.

Rod Isaacs explains, "Princethorpe College has raised over £110,000 for Mary's Meals in the last 14 years through epic sponsored walks, welly-wanging and cake sales. Last year alone we raised over £10,000 and we are committed to continuing our fundraising for the forthcoming year."

He continued, “We had a lot of fun and laughter on the day. Many thanks to all the Sixth Formers and staff who helped to organise the events. We have raised £293.55 so far and still have the porridge sales money to come, all will contribute towards the College’s ongoing feeding programme at Makalanga School.”

World Porridge Day is a fundraising event organised by Mary’s Meals in aid of starving children in the developing world. The charity provides daily meals in a place of learning addressing both the immediate needs of hungry children whilst encouraging them to go to school where they can gain an education that can help them out of poverty. Through their school feeding programmes in countries across Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean they feed over 2 million children every year. It costs just £15.90 to feed a child for a whole year.

You can find out more about Princethorpe’s fundraising for Mary's Meals or make a donation here

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Year 11 Geography Field Trip Explores Shrewsbury And Carding Mill Valley

On Thursday 30 September 2021, our intrepid Year 11 Geography GCSE pupils set off for Preston Montford, one of the Field Studies Council’s specialist outdoor centres. Lying close to the Welsh border, to the west of Shrewsbury in Shropshire, the field centre was a fantastic outdoor classroom where the pupils were able to put into practise the geographical field skills they have been studying in their lessons.  The two-day trip supported the geographical investigations modules that pupils undertake within their Geography GCSE.

Pupils spent one day exploring human geography topics, investigating urban dynamic areas by comparing the quality of life in the Castlefields and Radbrook Green districts of the county town of Shrewsbury. As part of their investigations, they completed questionnaires and took photographs which they will now put together with secondary data sources to complete their analysis. They also spent a day investigating physical geography topics in Carding Mill Valley, near the Long Mynd. There they surveyed the rivers, undertaking measurements and investigating the changes downstream.

Mike Taylor, Head of Geography, said, “Preston Montford is an excellent Field Centre. We had a very busy two days and the trip has given pupils a fantastic head start in component 3 of their GCSE, Geographical Investigations: Fieldwork and UK Challenges.”

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A-level Inspiration At The Sixth Form Open Evening

This year's Sixth Form Open Evening took place on Wednesday 13 October. It was an ideal opportunity for Year 11 pupils to discover what Princethorpe’s Sixth Form has to offer. Over the course of the evening some 128 internal and external applicants and their parents toured the school, visiting the various A-level departments, meeting staff and current Sixth Formers and hearing more about subjects and the exciting enrichment and co-curricular opportunities here at Princethorpe. With over 30 different courses available there was plenty to choose from.

Headmaster, Ed Hester, gave a series of short overview presentations and it was great to see the Sports Hall so full of parents and prospective pupils. Excellent academic results are of course a vital feature of any Sixth Form provision, but Mr Hester talked about the College’s family ethos, the focus on adding value for the individual and supporting students to achieve their personal best. He also spoke about Princethorpe's strengths, such as the dedicated Careers team and the enrichment opportunities, that add so much value to students’ future university, apprenticeship or employment applications.

As always the evening was very busy with plenty of interest being shown across the subjects. Sixth Formers acted as tour guides for our external visitors and talked enthusiastically about their experiences.

Head of Sixth Form, Ben Collie reminded everybody, “The next stage is to decide on the subjects you might wish to study, as a rule of thumb you should focus on the subjects you enjoy and are doing well in. Current Year 11s will be well supported throughout the process.”

External candidates now have the opportunity to join us for Sixth Form Taster Days in either December or January. More information on these days is available from the Registrars at admissions@princethorpe.co.uk.

For anyone who was unable to make Wednesday's Sixth Form Open Evening, information packs and links to recordings of the presentations will be shared.

Primary Schools Take On Princethorpe College’s Year 5 Maths Challenge

A team from Ruckleigh School, in Solihull, took first place in this year’s Princethorpe College Year 5 Maths Challenge.

The competition took place on Monday 11 October 2021 and was run by Douglas Buchanan of DCBEAGLE Challenges who specialises in organising exciting and innovative maths activities for primary school aged children.

Competing were 18 pairs of enthusiastic and talented mathematicians from nine schools, the pupils took part in a series of puzzles against the clock. In five eight-minute rounds the children tackled Tangram Triangles, Broken Calculators, Domino Jigsaws, Card Order and Curly’s Cycling Circuits, before finishing with a bonus round of five final mathematical problems.

Ably supported and marked by a team of Princethorpe Year 10 pupils, the competition stretched and challenged the children with mathematical activities that required both reasoning skills and mathematical knowledge.

The event was huge fun for all who took part. The final results were:

1st place: Ruckleigh School from Solihull

2nd place: St Augustine’s Catholic Primary School from Kenilworth

Joint 3rd place: Stratford Prep School from Stratford upon Avon and Telford Junior School from Leamington Spa

The winning teams all received mathematical prizes and everyone who participated received a certificate and a special Princethorpe cookie.

It was a great opportunity for all to put their maths skills to the test and the College was delighted to host the event. 

Train To Teach At Princethorpe With The Lion Alliance

Thinking of becoming a teacher? Then why not consider training with the Princethorpe Foundation.

Whether you are a new graduate or contemplating a career change, we have a wide range of opportunities available across the subjects including: Art and Design, Biology, Business Studies, Latin, English, Geography, History, Maths, MFL - French and Spanish, PE, Psychology, RE and at Primary.

Though our association with the Lion Alliance, we offer a year’s training as part of the School Direct scheme, leading to Qualified Teacher Status. Placements would be at Princethorpe or Crackley Hall and also at other schools within the Lion Alliance. Our training is supported by Warwick University, Birmingham City University, Coventry University and by our experienced mentors here at the Princethorpe Foundation.

You can preview the courses on offer here: www.gov.uk/find-postgraduate-teacher-training-courses by searching the database using the details: 1K1 – The Lion Alliance

Our Assistant Head for Teaching and Learning, Dr Liz Pyne is happy to offer advice about the different routes into teaching and what Princethorpe can offer you. Please email Dr Pyne at lizpyne@princethorpe.co.uk.

Further information about the Lion Alliance can be found at www.thelionalliance.co.uk.

Applications are through the DfE portal here: Apply for teacher training - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk). Applications opened Tuesday 12 October 2021.

Lower Sixth Visit To Dearne Valley

The Lower Sixth enjoyed a fabulous few days at Dearne Valley at the start of October. Their three day trip, from Friday 1 to Sunday 3 October, offered the students the chance to develop leadership and initiative skills, build personal resilience and gave them the opportunity to bond together as a group.

The 74 Lower Sixth Formers took part in a variety of outward bound activities including Canoeing, Zip Wire, Night Line, Climbing, Orienteering and Archery. In the evenings they enjoyed a scrap heap challenge and plenty of camaraderie around the campfire.

Everyone had fun and came back to school having made new friendships and discovered inner strengths. A great start to their time in the Sixth Form.




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113 Shoeboxes Donated To Christmas Teams4U Appeal

This year Princethorpe’s Chaplaincy Team has again supported the St Anne's, Wappenbury, Parish Shoe Box Appeal, to provide gifts for children overseas who would not otherwise receive a Christmas present.

A grand total of 113 boxes have been assembled and delivered to the local co-ordinator, ready to bring happiness and joy at this special time of year. They were packed full of little gifts and included educational and hygiene essentials such as toothbrushes, hairbrushes, paper and pens, every day, ordinary items to us but of great value to those who receive the gift.

The boxes will be distributed by Teams4U and will be given to a vulnerable child, or family, through schools, nurseries, hospitals and orphanages. T4U share the shoeboxes through relationships with local communities as part of a long-term commitment to their children. They also provide financing for pre-school programmes to support education and development.

Our thanks go to all the pupils, parents and staff who have donated to the appeal and to Marco Rodriguez Hernandez, Alex Sykes, Jemima Teeton, Sean Birtley and Andre Barnett for supporting the appeal by assembling, sorting and packing the boxes.

OPs October London Meet A Great Success

What a fabulous time was had by all on Friday 8 October at the eagerly-awaited OPs London Meet. The venue, Le Grand Salon Prive, on the first floor of French restaurant, Balthazar in London’s Covent Garden proved to be very popular indeed with some 45 OPs in attendance.

Past pupils from the 70s, 80s, 90s, 00s and recent leavers mingled and chatted happily together, reminiscing about Princethorpe and their time at the College. Tall stories were swapped, old friendships rekindled and new friendships made as the guests caught up with each other over some delicious food and drink courtesy of the OPs Committee.

Longstanding Assistant Head, form tutor and Physics teacher, Alex Darkes, who had travelled down from Warwickshire, was kept very busy all evening, chatting to his former pupils.

Just before ten o’clock the Princethorpe contingent, including Peter Rollason, Chair of the OPs, said their farewells before making a dash to the train for their journey home.

It was so good to have such an excellent turnout for our first face to face OPs event since March 2020 and we look forward to our next Meet on Friday 4 March 2022 at Inside the 22 in Rugby.

Any OPs interested in coming along, should sign up via Princethorpe Connect here

Old Princethorpian E-newsletter Out Now!

Click here to access the latest issue of the Old Princethorpian e-newsletter which was published on Friday 8 October.

The newsletter aims to keep our alumni in touch with each other and with news, developments and events across the Foundation. 

Please do share news of the newsletter with any Old Princethorpians, or former pupils of the Foundation's schools, including the legacy schools, that you know.

The next edition is due out in February 2022 and we welcome all OP contributions and updates for inclusion. 

If you would like to be added to the distribution list please email Old Princethorpians' Secretary Melanie Butler or sign up to Princethorpe Connect our online alumni community.

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Entrance Examinations Day For September 2022 Entry (Years 7 to 10)

Saturday 6 November 2021 - 9.00am to 4.00pm

Entrance Examinations for Year 7, 8, 9 and 10 entry to the College in September 2022 will take place on Saturday 6 November 2021 from 9.00am to 4.00pm. 

Parents of children who are registered to take the exams will receive further information about the day towards the end of half term.

If you have any queries relating to the exams or admissions process, the Admissions Team can be contacted on 01926 634201/262/297 or by email at admissions@princethorpe.co.uk.

Remembrance Service Friday 12 November

Friday 12 November - 11.00am 

On Friday 12 November at 11.00am the Princethorpe College community will gather together to silently reflect on the bravery and the selfless sacrifice made by so many of our country's service men and women.

This service will take place outside on the playground, so please can pupils ensure they bring a coat to school with them that day if the weather is cold. 

Beth Sharpe
Deputy Head - Pastoral





Parents' Reading Group

Wednesday 10 November 7.00pm

All agreed that the novel The Midnight Library by Matt Haig was both engaging and thought-provoking. In a time when mental health issues have become a concern for many, the book does offer a useful perspective on how we lead our lives suggesting that, whilst the choices we make are crucial, there is really no space for regrets, as we never know how our alternative lives might have worked out!

We will be meeting again in the library at 7.00pm on Wednesday 10 November. The book we will be discussing on that occasion is Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi.  The last book we read by this author was well received by all so we have good expectations of this one.  It is short enough to fit into a busy schedule yet covers some deep themes and is written with intelligence and insight. Please join us if you are able, whether or not you have read this particular book. We always welcome new faces and are always ready to try fresh authors.

Chris Kerrigan
Head of English

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Crescent School Reception Open Evening

Tuesday 16 November 2021 - 7.00pm to 8.00pm

The Foundation's Junior School in Rugby, the Crescent School, is holding a dedicated Reception Open Evening on Tuesday 16 November from 7.00pm to 8.00pm.

The evening is aimed at giving parents an insight into the Early Years at Crescent and the firm foundation the school gives children for their future learning. 

To book your place please click here.

If you can't make the Open Evening but would like to visit the school, please call our Registrar, Mrs Helen Morley, on 01788 523851 and come to see the school on a day to suit you.

For more information visit www.crescentschool.co.uk.

Crackley Hall Nursery And Reception Open Evening

Thursday 18 November 2021 - 7.00pm to 8.00pm 

Crackley Hall and Little Crackers, Princethorpe's Junior School and Nursery in Kenilworth are holding a Nursery and Reception Open Evening on Thursday 18 November 2021 from 7.00pm to 8.00pm.

This is an opportunity to gain an insight into the Early Years at Crackley Hall and Little Crackers.  Parents will be able to visit the Nursery and Reception classes, see examples of children's work and activities and to talk to the Headmaster, Rob Duigan, and Assistant Head Early Years and Key Stage 1, Susan Glen-Roots and meet members of the Nursery and Reception Team. 

To book your place click here.

If you can't make the Open Evening but would like to look around the school, please call our Admissions Secretary, Mrs Jenny Vaughan on 01926 514410 or alternatively email admissions@crackleyhall.co.uk and come on a day to suit you.

For more information visit www.crackleyhall.co.uk.


Prize Giving Ceremony

Friday 19 November - 7.30pm

We are excited to announce that invitations have been posted out today for our annual Prize Giving Ceremony, which will take place on Friday 19 November. The ceremony will be held at Warwick Arts Centre, University of Warwick, Coventry CV4 7AL, commencing at 7.30pm.

Traditionally, the vast majority of last year’s Upper Sixth return to collect their A-level examination certificates. Most will have embarked on their first year at university, apprenticeship or employment and this is a good opportunity for them to catch up.

GCSE examination certificates will be presented to last year’s Year 11, as well as a number of other awards and prizes, including our most prestigious, The Princethorpe Shield. The Year 7 Chorus will be singing, and the String Orchestra and Concert Band performing. 

An RSVP link will be emailed out to all those invited next week, please reply promptly to ensure we can get your tickets to you in plenty of time.

Shellagh Dodds
Examinations and Assessment Manager

Year 11 GCSE Revision Evening For Parents And Pupils

Monday 22 November 2021 – 6.30pm to 8.00pm

As part of our VESPA strategy, Princethorpe College will be holding a virtual, interactive GCSE revision evening, on Monday 22 November between 6.30pm and 8.00pm, for the parents and pupils in Year 11.

It will be hosted by Martin Griffin and Steve Oakes who have worked with more than sixty schools to develop effective character education systems using the VESPA model. During the session, Martin and Steve will explore the key principles of having a positive and proactive learning mindset and share tools and strategies for effective coaching and intervention with parents and equip parents and pupils with practical ideas and strategies to support their children throughout their GCSE courses. We do hope that Year 11 parents and pupils will be able to join us for what promises to be a very useful and informative evening.

We look forward to you joining this event. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me at lizpyne@princethorpe.co.uk

Dr Liz Pyne
Assistant Head - Teaching and Learning

School Production - Holes

Thursday 25 November to Saturday 27 November - 7.00pm

We will warm your hearts with a little help of the heat from the Texan desert in the cold dark November nights....Princethorpe Drama Department will be presenting a wonderful creative adaptation of Louis Sachar's Holes.

The Story  

Stanley Yelnats is in the wrong place at the wrong time….. 

When a pair of sneakers fall from the sky Stanley is convicted through the juvenile courts and sent to Camp Green Lake. 

Camp Green Lake is a boys’ juvenile detention centre in Texas.

There is no lake there.  

The boys spend each day digging five-foot holes in the dried up lakebed.  

Stanley believes his bad luck is because of a curse placed on his family after his great-great-grandfather, Elya Yelnats, stole a pig from a gypsy, Madame Zeroni. 

The action transports us from New York City to Texas and Latvia of old in this wonderful creative adaptation by our Key Stage 3 cast and creative team.

Performances will take place on Thursday 25 November, Friday 26 November and Saturday 27 November at 7.00pm in the Clarkson theatre here at Princethorpe College. Please click on the day you require in order to book tickets on My School Portal.  

We do hope you can join us for this event.

PTA Christmas Fair

Sunday 28 November 2021 - 2.00pm to 4.30pm

The PTA Christmas Fair will take place on Sunday 28 November - a fun, festive event for all ages including:

  • Christmas shopping market – choose from a range of artisan crafts, jewellery and gift
  • Christmas craft room – make a Christmas table decoration
  • Refreshments – mince pies and mulled wine, hot drinks and cake
  • Bottle and Chocolate Tombolas
  • Many other fun stalls

You can also participate in the Christmas Raffle and tickets will be sent out after half-term.  We have some fantastic prizes:

  • 1st Prize £250
  • 2nd Prize Fortnum and Mason Champagne and Chocolate Hamper
  • 3rd Prize £100

Plus, many more….

We would be very grateful for donations of bottles and/or chocolates in order to run the ever-popular tombolas - these can be sent in to school via the Student Hub.

Help Needed:

If you love decorating for Christmas and would like to help in the preparation for the Fair or even at the Fair itself, we’d really like to hear from you. Setting up begins after school on Friday 26 November and runs through the weekend. We greatly appreciate any help, so even if you can only spare half an hour we’d love to see you. Please email PTA@princethorpe.co.uk for more information.

We do hope that you and your family and friends are able to come along to what promises to be a wonderful festive event.

Christmas Wreath Fundraising Evening

Wednesday 1 December - 7.00pm

To support our next Sports Tour fundraising effort, Mrs Harrison is organising a Christmas wreath making evening on Wednesday 1 December, in the Sixth Form Centre. Arrival time will be 6.45pm for a 7.00pm start. Cost for the evening will be £22 per person and includes all materials to make your beautiful wreath, a welcome tea/coffee and mince pie.

It is open to all Princethorpe parents, staff and friends. In order to book your place(s) please click here by Thursday 18 November. One person can book for a group of people – recommended if you would like to sit together for the evening.

There will be a raffle on the night, so if anyone has a raffle prize they would like to donate, please get in touch with Mrs Harrison. Any questions, please email Louise Harrison at louiseharrison@princethorpe.co.uk



Year 7 Journey And Key Dates 2021-22

We wanted to write to you at the end of this first half term to give you some key messages and information as your child embarks on this new academic year.

We hope that by the time this reaches you, your child has settled in well to life at Princethorpe College. It is likely that by now, they know their way around the campus, have played their first sports fixture, and have been through the full two-week timetable a couple of times. The first few weeks at any new school can be a daunting time but we have been enormously impressed with the way in which they have embraced school life and supported each other as the term has progressed.

Year 7 is an exciting time on the academic front. It is a time for pupils to explore and express themselves in and out of the classroom. It is a time to develop their passions and understanding to help begin to lay the foundations for the academic adventure ahead. 

Whilst we hope for a more stable year than the last two, please rest assured that no matter how the national covid picture evolves we will ensure that the Year 7s are very well cared for and fully supported in their learning.

We thought it would be helpful for you to see some of the key events ahead at this stage so you can note them in your diaries and get a sense of how the bigger picture is likely to unfold. Please find attached here a table guide to the key events.

We hope you find this information useful and thank you in advance for your support for the year ahead.

Ed Hester                 Tom Marriott
Headmaster             Deputy Head - Academic


Year 8 Journey And Key Dates 2021-22

We wanted to write to you early in the year to give you some key messages and information as your child embarks on this new academic year.

Year 8 is an exciting time in your child’s Princethorpe journey. In Year 8 they are no longer the youngest year in the school, having ascended the first rung on the ladder towards the middle and senior parts of the school. Hopefully, they feel confident and happy in their place in the school community. School should be serious fun; Year 8 is a time for hard work, but also a time in which there is space to explore and develop the passions that will underpin success at GCSE level and beyond. 

Whilst we hope for a more stable year than the last two, please rest assured that no matter how the national covid picture evolves we will ensure that the Year 8s are very well cared for and fully supported in their learning.

Later in the year there will also be decisions to make regarding some options choices that pupils will need to make as they move into Year 9. We thought it would be helpful for you to see some of the key events ahead at this stage so you can note them in your diaries and get a sense of how the bigger picture is likely to unfold. Please find attached here a table guide to the key events.

We hope you find this information useful and thank you in advance for your support for the year ahead.

Ed Hester            Tom Marriott
Headmaster        Deputy Head - Academic


Year 9 Journey And Key Dates 2021-22

We wanted to write to you early in the year to give you some key messages and information as your child embarks on this new academic year.

Year 9 is an exciting time in your child’s Princethorpe career. They have successfully navigated life in Year 7 and 8, and are taking their place in the main body of the school community. This experience will be invaluable over the course of the next year because Year 9 marks a new phase in their academic life. 

Going into Year 9, pupils will have had the opportunity to narrow some of their subject choices to focus on specific areas of interest. This is a process that will continue throughout Year 9 as they come to make their final choices for GCSE. This is an important decision-making process and over the course of the next few months they will be guided closely every step of the way with input from the teachers, tutors and our careers guidance office. 

Year 9 is also an important year because it lays the foundations for the main GCSE stage in Years 10 and 11. It may also be the case that during Year 9 some subjects begin the syllabus content of the GCSE course. Consequently, it important to hit the ground running and embed the right habits and behaviours for success from the outset. This is something we will revisit and work with Year 9 to develop over the course of the year.

Please find attached here a brief overview of the key events ahead so you can note them in your diaries and get a sense of how the bigger picture is likely to unfold. Do please talk to your children over the weekend about the year ahead and any concerns they have.

We hope you find this information useful and thank you in advance for your support for the year ahead.

Ed Hester                  Tom Marriott
Headmaster              Deputy Head - Academic


Year 10 Journey And Key Dates 2021-22 - Reminder

We wanted to write to you early in the year to give you some key messages and information as your child embarks on this important year.

Year 10 marks the start of the formal GCSE cycle and, as such, is a critical stage in your child's school career. Last week, we delivered an assembly to Year 10 on the importance of getting into the right work habits and behaviours to make the best start and strike a healthy balance. The message was very much that the GCSE years are a marathon and not a sprint; pacing is vital. A recording of this assembly can be found by following this link.

Assembly Video

We hope that, in comparison to the last two academic years, Year 10 will enjoy a more stable and settled GCSE experience. However, if the last two years have taught us anything it is that we must be prepared for all eventualities. Please rest assured that no matter how the national Covid situation evolves we will ensure that the Year 10s are very well cared for and fully supported in their learning.

To this end, we thought it would be helpful for you to see some of the key events ahead at this stage so you can note them in your diaries and get a sense of how the bigger picture is likely to unfold, please see the attachment here. We went through these with the pupils in their assembly last week – do please talk to your children over the weekend about the year ahead and any concerns they have.

More detailed information regarding specific events such as the 360 Evening with tutors and the Year 10 Parents’ Evening will be emailed out in due course.

We hope you find this information useful and thank you in advance for your support for the year ahead.

 Ed Hester                              Tom Marriott
 Headmaster                          Deputy Head - Academic


Digital Device Scheme

The College’s Digital Device Scheme, which offers the Surface Go 2 (M3/8GB/128GB), type cover, stylus and 36 month insurance, is currently open for orders.

If you are planning to order then please remember that the online store, which can be accessed at https://princethorpe.edutechstore.zone/, is open until 10.00pm on Monday 18 October.

A reminder that all Year 7 pupils should come to school equipped with a device from the start of the Lent Term. This scheme is an excellent option for pupils in Year 7, but is open to parents of children from all year groups. Many children in the school use this device having purchased in the first wave of the scheme, and the feedback on the device is excellent. Additionally, the insurance provides peace of mind in case of accidental damage or theft.

Andy Compton

Assitant Head - Director of Digital Strategy

Year 11 360 Meetings

Tuesday 2 November 2021 - 6.00pm to 8.30pm

To support the progress of our Year 11 we will be offering face to face meetings in the Sports Hall with your child’s tutor to discuss progress and future targets. During the meeting tutors will have information to share about current progress for your child.  It will be an opportunity for you to discuss all subjects and overall study skills. Importantly, targets will be made for further improvement and for the mock exams and therefore it is expected that pupils will also attend the meeting.

Parents will be given the opportunity to book electronically a 20 minute slot with their child’s tutor. Parents will also be able to attend a series of workshops on how best to support their child whilst at Princethorpe. An email will be sent out to parents with more information and booking details during half term.

Michael Spencer
Assistant Head – Director of Studies


Half Term Homework Expectations

Years 7, 8, 9 expectations: 
No formal homework will be set for the half term (although some pupils may have to complete homework set for the last week of the half term). Pupils will be expected to catch up on any missed or incomplete work and sort any files or folders.


Year 10 expectations: 

Homework may be set for certain subjects. Pupils will be expected to catch up on any missed or incomplete work and sort any files or Teams/OneNote folders.


Year 11 and Sixth Form expectations:

  • Work priorities for each subject
  • This is based on 2 hours work on each weekday of the half term
  • Complete homework set
  • Complete coursework set
  • Complete any outstanding work
  • Sort out your Teams folders/OneNote into good order
  • Keep on top of revision for January mocks (Year 11)

You want to come back from half term refreshed but up to date. 

Good luck and enjoy the break.

Dr Liz Pyne
Assistant Head - Teaching and Learning

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Flu Vaccinations For Year 7-11 Pupils - Monday 15 November 2021

The Immunisation Team will be in school on Monday 15 November 2021 to offer pupils in Years 7 - 11 the flu vaccination. Consent forms and further information will be sent out nearer the time.

Paula Greig
Senior Matron

Detentions - Reminder

This year we are still managing our detention system in the same way as last year. 

Detentions will be held daily as follows

Year 11 Monday P4L1 in G21

Year 7 Tuesday P4L1 in G21

Year 8 Wednesday P4L1 in G21

Year 9 Thursday P4L1 in G21

Year 10 Friday P4L2 in G11

Detentions will be set if a pupil receives three LLCs (which includes late to lessons, uniform and mobile phone violations) or one HLC.

Three detentions equals a Saturday morning detention. Parents will be notified in advance if their child is expected to attend an after school detention via an isams email message.

Please can we take this opportunity to ask parents to remind their children of the importance of good conduct and organisation in school. Pupils failing to comply with the Princethorpe College Code of Conduct may put themselves and others as risk of harm.

Mrs Beth Sharpe  
Deputy Head - Pastoral




Universities and Careers

Year 11 Work Experience - Reminder

We are still hoping that Year 11 pupils can undertake some work experience this year.

I know that this is a very challenging time, and that getting some work experience could be less easy for the next few months, but as things start to open up, it could be possible.

Placements can be undertaken during the early part of Lower Sixth, for example October half term 2021.

I would also suggest looking at the website Springpod which offers a virtual work experience programme which has been highly recommended by our Careers Advisor.

Many thanks to those who already have managed to help their son/daughter obtain a placement; in the meantime please could you let me know if you have managed to arrange something by emailing miketaylor@princethorpe.co.uk

Mike Taylor
Work Experience Co-ordinator


Christmas Fair - Help Needed Please

Our friendly PTA here at Princethorpe College are keen to welcome new volunteers. There are a wide range of events and activities that are organised and run throughout the year that help raise important funds for the school.

The Christmas Fair is the biggest fundraiser in the school's calendar and this year it will be held on Sunday 28 November. It is a fabulous festive event that is a treat for the whole family and if you are able to come and help out at all we would be delighted to hear from you.

For more information about the PTA and getting involved in any aspect, please email pta@princethorpe.co.uk or fill in the form here to send the PTA your details.

Thank you.


Princethorpe College PTA - Easyfundraising - Reminder

Please don’t forget that Princethorpe College PTA is registered with easyfundraising. So, although we’ve been unable to get together and hold fundraising events in person for a while, we can continue to raise free funds, at no extra cost to you.

When you shop via the easyfundraising website or app, with over 4,100 of your favourite retailers, including John Lewis & Partners, eBay, Amazon and many more, you will raise FREE donations for the school.  

If you’re not already registered, please visit our easyfundraising page here:

This will really make a difference to our school! Thank you for your support.

Join The Princethorpe PTA Community

Our friendly PTA here at Princethorpe College are keen to welcome new members. 

By joining our PTA community, you are not committing to volunteer, but just to joining our community and if you do wish to volunteer you will receive emails when we require help to run our events.

For more information about the PTA and how to join please email pta@princethorpe.co.uk

Princethorpe PTA


Michaelmas Term Celebration Of Achievement

It is always great to hear about the successes that take place outside of school; please do keep us updated if your son or daughter has won a competition, is performing in a show or competing at a high level with a sporting team outside of school, we would love to hear more.  We would like to invite parents to submit this information to us via a nomination form by clicking here so we might celebrate these achievements in school too.  

Neil McCollin
Assistant Head - Co-Curricular

Celebrating Pupil Achievements Outside School

It is great to be able to share another round up of pupils' co-curricular successs outside of school.

Year 8 girls, Bella Ward, Amy Farquharson, Rosie Moreton and Lily Carroll play for Leamington Netball U13A team. They took part in a pre-season League Tournament at Kings High School on Sunday 10 October. The girls played four matches, winning three and drawing one. A great achievement after so long without competitive matches due to Covid restrictions. They are looking forward to the Coventry and Warwickshire League re-commencing on the Sunday 7 November.

Rosie Moreton also represented Princethorpe College at the Schools Equestrian Eventing Championships at Calmsden near Cirencester on Saturday 25 September.  Rosie was competing against riders up to 18 years of age and from schools from all over the country who had all qualified for this Championships in previous events. Rosie did a good dressage test and a clear round show jumping and clear cross country in the allocated time, which was over a testing course. Huge congratulations to Rosie who finished fifth overall. We were delighted she flew the flag for Princethorpe College. 

Two boys ran in the Southam Triathlon on Sunday 10 October. Year 8 Soren Wasley swam 800m, cycled 3.2km and then ran 2km. He finished sixth in a very competitive field. Year 9 Adam Chambers, also competed against a field of competitors that included a Junior GB team athlete. Adam doesn't belong to a triathlon club yet, nevertheless, he raced around pool and the fields. He completed the course in under 40 minutes picking up a Runner’s Up trophy for his efforts. He has now got the triathlon bug and aims to compete in more events next season.

Year 10, Freddie Roberts has just had some good news as he has been selected for the Wasps Rugby U15's Developing Player Programme. A really fantastic achievement.

A huge shout out for all these young people we are very impressed to hear off your endeavours.

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Duke Of Edinburgh’s Award - Complete Your Award 2020-21 - Reminder

Please continue to prioritise signing off your volunteering, physical and skill sections.  Many have already completed their award in full.  Guidance can be found on a DofE Completion email sent to you and your parents, the advice documents below are also available on MySchoolPortal.

For help, please refer to this eDofE Completion Guide and the Electronic Assessor Report Guide. You may also find it useful to refer to the Temporary Changes Summary or Gold Temporary Changes Summary documents.

The Y10 Bronze eDofE lunchtime drop-in clinic continues this week on Thursday 13.05 in LG01.  The Y11 Silver clinic takes place on Tuesday 13.05 in LG02.  The Certificate Presentation Evening will take place on Tuesday 18 January 2022.  However, the final deadline for completion for those aiming to move from bronze to silver is October half term, for those stopping at bronze it is Christmas.

Will Bower 
Head of Outdoor Education – DofE Manager 

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Duke Of Edinburgh’s Award - Signing Up 2021-22 - Final Reminder

Please click on this link to view the DofE Parents’ Information Evening video, information booklet and enrolment form on MySchoolPortal.

The deadline for enrolment is today, Friday 15 October (half term).  Please complete the form and submit the £50 deposit as soon as possible. Instructions regarding payment of the deposit can be found at the back of the Information Booklet. I will be in contact after half term to explain the next steps and hand out course materials.

Here is a reminder of the eligibility criteria: 

Award Stage        Age Requirement 
Bronze                  Year 9 
Silver                    Year 10 
Gold                     16 years old (must be in the Sixth Form) 

Will Bower 
Head of Outdoor Education – DofE Manager 


IT Security Incident Reporting Policy - Reminder

As a Foundation we take IT Security very seriously, for the benefit of all stakeholders including pupils, parents and staff. As we move into the new school year we wanted to remind you of our IT Security Incident Reporting Policy and highlight once more some key elements of this, in the unlikely case that you encounter anything that could constitute a possible security incident in your use of Foundation systems such as My School Portal, or receive any suspicious emails that pertain to be from the Foundation.

IT Security incidents are any incidents which may risk compromise of personal data, attempts to imitate Foundation IT Systems or unauthorised access to Foundation IT Systems. This could include incorrect communication of information, for example via email, information being available publicly, unauthorised access to Foundation IT Systems such as My School Portal through password cracking or sharing, or the theft/loss of portable media such as unencrypted USB drives or laptops.

Should you or your children become aware of any of the above incidents, or similar, please contact either servicedesk@princethorpe.co.uk or a member of staff at the school attended by your child/children. The Incident Management Procedure will then be initiated.

Pupils will also be informed of the need to tell a member of staff, such as their tutor or teacher if they suspect any IT security incident such as those above, and staff are also made aware of this.

Of course, we hope this will never be necessary, but felt it important to inform you of the correct procedure if you do encounter any IT Security Incidents relating to Foundation systems.

Eddie Tolcher
Foundation Bursar 

School Shop - Closed During Half Term - Reminder

Please note that the school shop will be closed during the half term break.  If you have any uniform requests please email uniform@princethorpe.co.uk.  All requests will be dealt with when the shop reopens on Monday 2 November 2021.

Barbara Bromwich
Foundation Shop Manager

Cleaner Air At Princethorpe

Thank you to all the parents who turn off their engines when they are waiting for pupils to come out of school. As a community we are striving to reduce the impact that we have on our world and turning of engines reduces our carbon impact and the emission of smelly exhaust fumes.

Eddie Tolcher 
Foundation Bursar