The RP Weekly: 14 January 2022
The weekly digital newsletter from Rydal Penrhos School - 14 January 2022.
The RP Weekly
14 January 2022
Rydal Penrhos Assessment Day
For September 2022 entry.
We warmly invite you to attend our Assessment Day, which is for all year groups and will take place on Saturday 22 January from 9am.
This is for any child looking to join Rydal Penrhos for September 2022 entry and the Assessment Day will all be conducted with consideration of COVID-19 safety protocols at the time.
Anyone wishing to register can do so by emailing email@example.com, calling 01492 530155 or using the online form: https://rydalpenrhos.com/admissions/rydal-penrhos-assessment-day/
Preparing pupils for expected return
It has not been easy for examination candidates over the last two years. The COVID-19 pandemic forced a different method of assessment for pupils, which has seen Rydal Penrhos react superbly to ongoing changes in an uncertain time for everyone across the globe.
Pupils and teaching staff have displayed outstanding commitment throughout what was obviously a stressful time. Something that’s enabled the school’s rich and proud history of examination/assessment results to continue with many A Level candidates also securing their first-choice university destination thanks to their sterling dedication before the next stage of their respective journeys.
With some semblance of normality now returning, the Welsh Government is making plans for examinations to return – although these are subject to change depending on how COVID-19 concerns develop or regress over the next few months.
Speaking to the BBC, Wales’ education minister, Jeremy Miles, said:
“The plan is to proceed with exams. Obviously, we will need to look at what disruption happens in our schools.”
Rydal Penrhos has been at the forefront of safety precautions throughout the pandemic and ongoing restrictions. Staff have gone above and beyond to provide pupils with every possible support necessary, with a comprehensive online provision and exceptional guidance upon returning to school something that’s benefitted every year group.
Pupils are participating in IGCSE Mathematics and Cambridge Technical (Business and Sport) examinations this week, with each candidate fully prepared for the challenges that lie ahead.
This is done by constant monitoring and evaluation from teaching staff, who cater to the individual and bring the best out of them on a daily basis both academic and throughout a wide range of extra-curricular activities designed to boost key skills outside of a typical classroom environment.
Everyone at Rydal Penrhos would like to wish our candidates the very best of luck during their exams and offer a huge thanks to the school’s teaching staff for exemplary guidance every step of the way.
Prep site smoothing the transition
“We wanted to say how pleased and grateful we are for all your efforts with the children. They have settled in very well and it does feel as if they have been at Rydal Penrhos much longer. We have noticed a significant overall improvement since being at Rydal Penrhos and they are all really happy at school. The breadth and quality of activities are outstanding.” – New Prep parent
Starting a new school can be an exciting and often nervous experience. At Rydal Penrhos, our staff look to make the transition process as smooth as possible in pursuit of making pupils an immediate part of the school community with every possible support and guidance throughout the process and their time with us.
Our Admissions team provide all the information needed to ready pupils and their families with enrollment, which includes a personalised digital welcome pack with vital information such as timetables, key contacts and login details that can be easily accessed on any device.
“I really think you should be aware of how great these are. We’ve never had anything like this from any private school. They are so helpful, useful and valuable. It’s genius, thank you.” – New parent.
At Rydal Penrhos’ thriving Prep site from Pre-School to Year 6, new pupils become a member of their own class on the first day, with teaching staff having the immediate responsibility for pastoral care and monitoring the progress of all of the children in their class.
All new pupils are involved in an induction programme when they join the school.
This includes guidance about school procedures and expectations and they will also be linked to their own “buddy” – a current pupil – that takes them through the early stages of day-to-day life across the school and provides an extra layer of support to assist with the settling-in period.
Pupils will also be assigned to a specific House.
This immediately gives them a sense of belonging, with house pride forming a key component of Rydal Penrhos life and something staff and pupils take a great deal of pride in.
It’s the little things that make a big difference at Rydal Penrhos. This care and attention to every detail go a long way to ensure each child or young person gets the very most out of their education.
Staff go above and beyond the call of duty on a daily basis to help our pupils reach their potential.
This is something that has brought a considerable amount of success through exceptional examination results, high value-added scores and encouraging academic and extra-curricular development across every year group on a daily basis.
Enhancing academic development
Although pupils of all ages are embarking on an ever-increasing digital age, the importance of reading to academic development remains unaltered.
This is something that is recognised by Rydal Penrhos’ outstanding teaching staff, who provide a balanced provision that incorporates the modern with the traditional with great success.
An emphasis on reading and pupil literacy helps develop higher levels of focus and concentration. It also forces the reader to sort things out in their own mind – including topics that might not be familiar to them.
Reading also helps pupils develop better critical and analytical skills, something that carries over even after they have put the book down. Enhanced reading also improves vocabulary and helps to strengthen memory retention skills, which is a powerful tool for pupils young and old.
The school’s Language, Literacy and Communications Faculty, led by Miss Fiona Earle, have organised a series of book and reading clubs for pupils to attend throughout the spring term. This new initiative began on Thursday 6 January in the Watkinson Library and has already received a significant amount of interest.
Year 10 pupils who enjoy books and want to expand their reading can do so during a session every Monday from 1.15-1.40pm, with Year 11 pupils considering Literature in Sixth Form (Key Stage 5) – or who want to read for research/exploration get the chance to enhance their respective skills on Tuesdays from 12.50-1.15pm.
Year 7 and 8 will be reading Carnegie Award-nominated books on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and the sessions conclude every Friday with Year 12 and 13 exploring and discussing fascinating texts alongside staff.
This is another fantastic academic development within the school that was implemented with pupil progress in mind. We hope they all involved get the most out of their experience and Rydal Penrhos remains indebted to our staff for constantly going above and beyond the call of duty.
Self-portraits draw inspiration from iconic Welsh artist
Learning through art enriches the experience of studying while at school as well as preparing pupils for life after they depart.
It encourages self-expression and creativity and can build confidence as well as a sense of individual identity, which is an important part of the curriculum from a very early age at Rydal Penrhos.
Our Reception-Year 6 pupils benefit enormously from the passionate and exceptional teaching of Suzy Morris. They also have the most beautiful Art room to learn and get creative with every tool imaginable in pursuit of achieving their goals.
Mrs Morris does an incredible job of incorporating some legendary artists – both modern and historical – for pupils to explore, discuss and draw inspiration from to improve their own artistic skills in a supportive setting.
Another fine example of this emerged from a recent Year 3 project, with the enthusiastic group creating their very own self-portraits in a style implemented by an industry leader, learning about texture in their work and using palette knives to paint.
Their work was based on that of Shani Rhys James MBE, a Welsh painter based in Llangadfan, Powys. She has been described as “arguably one of the most exciting and successful painters of her generation” and “one of Wales’ most significant living artists”.
In addition to dozens of critically acclaimed exhibitions featuring her work, Mrs James was elected to the Royal Cambrian Academy of Art in 1994. In the 2006 New Year’s Honours, she was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for “services to art”.
Each pupil worked exceptionally hard on their respective pieces. Their creations will now be added to the colourful displays situated both in the Art department and throughout the Prep site at Rydal Penrhos.
Year 3 are all bringing on their artistic skills throughout the academic year, building key skills and also improving confidence and expression along the way.
Here are some examples of their fabulous work. Well done to all!
Sponsor regiment to make first official visit next week
One of the most popular initiatives launched by Rydal Penrhos in recent years is the school’s Combined Cadet Force, which now has a thriving Army Section with cadets ranging from Year 8 right up to Year 13.
Each pupil involved benefits enormously from a range of tasks, expeditions and other activities under the supervision of qualified staff, with the CCF going from strength to strength since its inception as a result.
Even with COVID-19 restrictions making things difficult over the last two years, the CCF group has still managed to progress effectively and hold activities under strict guidelines to ensure their development remained on track and targets could be met.
Cadets will get the opportunity of another incredible experience next week with the first official visit of Rydal Penrhos’ sponsor regiment, the 1st Queen’s Dragoon Guards, on Tuesday 18 January.
The school was the first CCF group in the country to boast the QDG badge on their uniforms, and during the visit, there will be lessons taught by Troopers during the afternoon and even a chance to see the regimental mascot, which is a Welsh Mountain Pony.
The 1st Queens’ Dragoon Guards (QDG) is a cavalry regiment of the British Army. Nicknamed The Welsh Cavalry, the regiment recruits from Wales and the bordering English counties of Cheshire, Herefordshire, and Shropshire, and is the senior cavalry regiment.
The regiment is part of the Royal Armoured Corps and is paired with the Royal Yeomanry.
This is a fantastic honour for or CCF initiative, which aims to promote the qualities of responsibility, self-reliance, resourcefulness and a sense of service to the community.
We look forward to welcoming the 1st Queens’ Dragoon Guards to Rydal Penrhos for what promises to be a memorable occasion for those involved.
Celebrating an action-packed schedule!
Music is more vital now than ever at Rydal Penrhos and across the globe. In a world where citizens can communicate on a global scale so rapidly, access to music from diverse cultures is ubiquitous.
We now have such a wealth of music to listen to, play and create that we find ourselves in the position of having to rise to the challenge of not devaluing the currency. Neurologists such as Daniel Levitin and Anuh Patel have studied its beneficial effects on the brain. Susan Hallam relates its benefits in the development of literacy within children.
It is with this understanding and sensibility that music is taught at Rydal Penrhos, both in a theoretical sense and allowing our pupils to express themselves practically both during lessons and through concerts put on by the school throughout the academic year.
Despite current COVID-19 restrictions, the school’s teaching staff have devised an action-packed after school clubs schedule relating to music, with all sessions taking place in the spacious St John’s Church to ensure every possible precaution is taken.
The Senior Choir get the chance to build friendships and vocal prowess during two separate sessions on Monday and Tuesday, giving pupils the freedom to explore other extra-curricular interests alongside their music commitments. Another popular group is the Rydal Penrhos Jazz Club, which performs within the school and across the community and will hone its skills every Wednesday, with Thursday’s slot reserved for individual ensembles.
This is something to be celebrated after so much change over the last two years. Something that will benefit our pupils enormously in terms of their confidence, their studies and for any upcoming Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music assessments.
Available to blow away the cobwebs!
“The great facilities at Rydal Penrhos have enabled me to offer my clients an elite, spacious and focused environment to train in. The new modern equipment, big space and high level of cleanliness have allowed me to grow my business offering a wider range of fitness option to more people.” – Simon Lacey (Personal Trainer)
Once the Christmas season comes to a conclusion and the cheeseboard, wine and other treats become a distant memory, the time comes to focus on health and either maintaining or boosting fitness levels.
New Year’s resolutions about getting in shape are commonplace throughout most households in the United Kingdom. Blowing away the cobwebs in January after the festive period is something many aspire to but find difficult to accomplish for one reason or another.
It can be quite overwhelming – with social media filled with posts about body transformations and adverts for cut price gym membership. Couple this with work and family commitments and it’s not hard to see why many people fail to meet their objectives.
There are a plethora of fitness groups and trainers that can help you accomplish your individual goals in the short and long-term.
For any groups such as this looking to expand, Rydal Penrhos has first-class facilities to give them and those attending another major boost.
The school was recently used by three-time defending Super League champions St Helens for a special pre-season camp to further testify the outstanding facilities available that are used weekly by local clubs and teams in addition to prestigious organisations such as Cricket Wales and Glamorgan Cricket Club, who recently held a coaching day at Rydal Penrhos.
This also includes Welsh youth rugby, cricket, netball and hockey squads who hold residential training camps with us.
The school’s incredible New Field sporting venue -which has its own pavilion – regularly hosts Cricket Wales youth matches and has seen iconic figures such as Andrew Flintoff attend.
Rydal Penrhos has a vast array of facilities, including a Sports Hall and Fitness Suite that can be used for netball, basketball and indoor cricket nets, with the astroturf surface providing a floodlit training area for pupils and clubs across the region to utilise.
The school also has its own outdoor cricket nets area, no fewer than five immaculate rugby pitches, seven outdoor tennis courts, two squash courts, four Eton Fives courts and a dedicated short game golf area for anyone wishing to hone their bunker, chipping or putting skills.
If that wasn’t enough, Rydal Penrhos has an RYA accredited Sailing and Water-Sports Centre as part of our campus and this is available to visiting groups.
Our instructors can put together taster sessions or a day on the water for our more qualified visitors, which has been part of the school’s history for more than 60 years and something pupils absolutely love all through the academic year.
The school’s sporting facilities are available for evening and weekend hire and during all school holidays. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01492 530155.
Pupils help Eirias Hockey Club reach Welsh Cup semis
Rydal Penrhos pupils have been busy developing in and out of the classroom during the academic year so far.
It’s been an uncertain time with ever-changing restrictions, but progression has continued encouragingly across subjects, within outdoor education and in a sporting environment.
Our pupils also benefit enormously from participating in clubs, teams and organisations outside of school hours. This gives them plenty of useful experience that stands them in good stead during their time at Rydal Penrhos.
Another impressive example of this recently came in the field of Hockey, with a number of aspiring stars assisting Eirias Hockey Club U16s to a notable tournament triumph and booking their place in the Welsh Cup semi-finals.
Competing in the Northern qualification pool, the squad produced the goods throughout a series of fixtures to emerge unbeaten with a 100 per cent record and come away with the crown.
Eve Durrans (captain), Lily Davies, Martha Hind and Keira Luke were the Rydal Penrhos representatives for Eirias Hockey Club, who started the competition with an outstanding all-round display to beat Bangor Hockey Club 2-0.
This was followed by an exceptional attacking display en route to a 4-0 success over Bala Hockey Club, and Eirias finished off in style with a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Caernarfon Hockey Club to move on to the next stage of the competition.
Preparations are now underway for the semi-finals, which will take place on Sunday 27 February and will see the squad aim to reach the prestigious finals later this year.
Everyone at Rydal Penrhos would like to congratulate Eve, Lily, Martha, Keira and the entire Eirias Hockey Club team on their win. We wish you the best of luck in the semi-finals!
Suzy Drane named co-captain of Welsh Netball squad
We are always delighted to hear about former Rydal Penrhos pupils flourishing. Whether it’s in business, the performing arts or in a sporting environment, our alumni build on the exceptional foundation they receive at the school and go on to great things as a result.
A shining example of this is Suzy Drane, one of the country’s most decorated netballers who has once again been named as co-captain for the 17-strong Welsh squad for the upcoming International Test Series.
Wales will face Gibraltar, Isle of Man and the Republic of Ireland in a Home Test Series which will be played at Ebbw Vale Sports Centre from 14-16 January. In this exciting competition, the four international sides will be looking to triumph and get their hands on the Wendy White Trophy.
This will be the final opportunity for Wales to play in ranking Test Matches before the announcement of the remaining nations that have qualified for the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham this July.
A tweet from Suzy following the squad announcement, read: “Very privileged to be named in the squad for the upcoming series. This is a great opportunity for us to get out on the court against quality opposition.
“Extremely grateful for all those who are making this happen and super excited we get to play at home, there’s no better feeling.”
Suzy is currently playing for Team Bath Toucans after a sensational stint with Celtic Dragons. The former pupil is currently a lecturer in Sport Development and Performance Sport at Cardiff Metropolitan University, a role she took up in 2011 following the completion of a BSc and MSc in Sport Development and Physical Activity and Health respectively.
Everyone at Rydal Penrhos wishes Suzy and the Welsh Netball squad the best of luck this weekend!
Stars of the Week
- Reception – Kit
- Year 1 – Tiffany
- Year 2 – Ellis and Poppy
- Year 3 – Jacob S
- Year 4 – Toby
- Year 5 – Clara
- Year 6 – Ella
Rugby vs Wirral Grammar School
Couch to 5k gets underway!
Health & Wellbeing Faculty Leader
Health and Wellbeing Faculty Leader
- Full Time, Permanent
- For September 2022, or earlier
A dynamic, enthusiastic and highly motivated individual is required to teach, lead and manage the Health and Wellbeing Faculty for pupils age 11-18 from September 2022, or earlier, if possible. The role calls for cohesive, strategic thinking to enable the highest level of pupil progress, attainment and engagement within the wider school.
The successful candidate will join a Faculty which includes Physical Education and Outdoor Education. The ability to teach Physical Education up to and including A Level, or A Level equivalent is essential. The ability to coach Rugby Football or Hockey would be advantageous.
You will be responsible for an excellent and wide-reaching extra-curricular programme for all pupils, ensuring it is varied, fulfilling and supports pupils’ physical and mental well-being.
You will be required to co-ordinate and communicate effectively with many key stakeholders both within the school but also to develop links within the local community.
Rydal Penrhos and follows Maintained Schools’ salary structure for Wales. A TLR 2C (£7,140) is commensurate with the role. The school is also a member of the Teachers’ Pension Service, with other benefits available to staff to be discussed at interview.
The school is in a glorious position between the beautiful North Wales coastline and the mountains of Snowdonia and is within easy access of the major cities via the A55.
Completed applications should be emailed to Kay Walters: email@example.com.
FULL INFORMATION AND HOW TO APPLY