Dartford and Gravesham District Cross Country

Last week we took 9 students to The Leigh Academy for the annual Dartford and Gravesham district cross country. The team consisted of 2 year 7 girls, 3 year 7 boys and 3 year 10 boys.

The day was hugely successful with fantastic team spirit being demonstrated from all students. The students ran with true determination and showed resilience from the start to the end.

It was a delight to see students from different key stages cheering and encouraging each other and being outstanding ambassadors for the school. One student qualified to represent the district with a fabulous  yet exhausting run.

The students placings:

Year 7- Girls 7th and 22nd, Boys- 26th, 38th and 42nd.

Year 10- Boys 22nd, 23rd and 27th.

Well done to all those involved.
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Leigh UTC Students’ Success at Duke of York Awards 2017

The Leigh UTC proudly attended the Duke of York Awards, at which seven Year 13 leavers achieved gold awards. Students were presented with their awards by HRH Prince Andrew, Duke of York, who also spoke at the ceremony and gave up his time to chat personally to each of the students at the after post-ceremony reception.

This is the second year that the Leigh UTC have received these prestigious awards, where students will have gone through a screening process including having to impress at a final interview with local business representatives.

To gain the award students were required to gain excellent grades, which they all achieved through gaining a distinction or higher in engineering or computer science, as well as excellent grades in their other qualifications. Students provided further evidence through interview to demonstrate how they had excelled outside the curriculum, including working for companies on team projects, being team leaders and securing work experience within their chosen career paths.

We would like to thank all our business partners for helping us with the external interviews. We are also grateful for the many aspects of their continued support of The Leigh UTC since its opening in September 2014 which includes governance, provision of work experience work experience, mentoring and supply of materials.

As part of the awards process, students discussed their accomplishments in areas such as chairing meetings, collaborative work and working with a variety of companies in the field of engineering and computer science, which helped many to 

secure apprenticeships. Students also had to work closely with various companies and professional bodies to demonstrate group project management such as working together to design and build bomb disposal robots which they then had to test run under pressure conditions and present to the Ministry of Defence.

After giving out awards to students from five UTCs which included the Leigh, – the Duke said: “The velocity of change in the workplace is only increasing, which means that many of you aren’t going to be doing what you are doing now.”

“But the basis of knowledge that you have gained whilst at the UTC is probably the most useful basis of knowledge in any school system that we have in the UK. It gives you the greatest flexibility in being able to cope with that velocity of change.This country needs well-educated, technically-minded people. It doesn’t always need philosophers. It doesn’t always need people who can write perfect English. It needs people who are going to be able to use their skills.”

Steve Leahey, Principal at The Leigh UTC, commented: I am immensely proud of our students and their desire to succeed.  They thoroughly deserve this accolade.  It reflects well on the outstanding work going on across the UTC, I continue to be amazed by what can be achieved by our staff and students,

Leigh UTC students who achieved the prestigious gold award were Daniel Quinn, Kai Lewis, Oliver Lock, Akeem Rhoden, Greg Tindell, Justin Chapman and Yash Rusdharry.

During the interview process, our business partners continually praised the achievements of the Leigh UTC students consistently judging them to exceed the gold-award standard expectations by some considerable distance. We are extremely proud of each and every one of them.

Well done to all concerned!



Remembrance Service at The Leigh UTC

Throughout the week students from across Inspiration Academy and Leigh UTC have been learning about Remembrance and raising money for fallen and injured soldiers in support of the Royal British Legion. Students from all key stages have been selling poppies. Special thanks to Ruya Shukri (Y7) for making such beautiful crochet poppies that have been sold to staff and students.  

 

On Friday 10th November all students took part in a service of Remembrance. Mr Arnould led the event that included a 2 minute silence, and laying of the wreaths on behalf of students, staff and stakeholders. Traditional readings and poetry read by students Amelia Cockran (Y13) and Ruya Shukri (Y7). Josephs Fasgbons (Y13) excellent poem that he wrote  “Remembrance” (Below) was a huge highlight. Mr Clive Barker, CSB Logistics, Vice Chair of Governors was also in attendance and read ‘Taking a Stand’, by John Bailey. Mr Barker commented on the “Exemplary” manner in which the students took part in the event. Josephs beautiful poem “Remembrance”:

 

That time has come, but it’s also past

The Sacrifice they made, for our lives to last.

Wives turned to widows, families completely torn

Gave their lives, so for them we mourn.

Some gone forever, but souls never lost

I guess freedom comes, with this heavy cost.

We enjoy the life, they did preserve

The fate they suffered, but did not deserve.

That time has come, but lest we forget

To them we own, our life in debt.         

Joseph Fasogbon    Year 13 Leigh UTC Student

 

Joseph Fasogbon    Year 13 Leigh UTC Student




Fujitsu competition

For the second year running, Fujitsu (in collaboration with partners Intel, Brocade and Kyocera) have run their Operation Innovation competition for teams of sixth-form students in Fujitsu Education Ambassador schools across the UK. Last week, a team of four Y13 students: Oliver Barnes, Amelia Cockran, Joseph Fasogbon, and George Waterman, headed off to the National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park (home of UK code-breaking efforts during World War 2) to compete in the finals of this competition. The brief was to generate and develop an innovative use of Fujitsu’s Internet of Things technology portfolio within one of three key areas: construction, education, or manufacturing. The Leigh UTC team wrote a 14-page proof of value document in support of their concept: Open.ii, a novel use of Fujitsu’s augmented reality head-mounted display to assist students with special educational requirements within a normal classroom environment, thereby reducing the need for specialist staff support.

The team’s report, as well as a carefully crafted presentation, was submitted at the end of the last module, and they were invited to the finals (with seven other teams from an initial field of 15) to present their idea to a panel of five Fujitsu and Intel executives. Aside from the presentation itself (and challenging questions from the judges afterwards), the teams were free for most of the day to practice, talk to Fujitsu interns and apprentices, and look around the museum (which included a selection of old games consoles and a very popular Crazy Taxi arcade machine). After lunch, The Leigh UTC team had the opportunity to tour a fully rebuilt Colossus computer (the first digital, programmable, electronic computer ever built), 10 of which were used during World War 2 to crack the Lorenz code, which German high command and army units used to encrypt messages throughout the war.
After all eight finalists had completed their presentations, and the judges finally finished deliberating, the prizes were awarded. The judges noted that the overall standard had jumped substantially in this year’s competition (enough that last year’s winners did not even make it to the finals this time around), and then presented trophies for the top three teams. Although the Leigh UTC team did not win first prize (which included a trip to a major Fujitsu conference this week in Germany and the opportunity to present their proposal to a senior Fujitsu executive), they were awarded third place and complimented on their exceedingly high level of teamwork (both throughout the presentation and in a previous video-conference with some of the judges in September). They returned to the school, still shocked by how successful they had been, bringing back a trophy for the school and a wealth of transferable skills and experience to enhance their CVs going forward. We are hopeful that Fujitsu will continue the competition next year, and aim to go all the way to Germany next time around!


Principal Blog – Module 1

I would like to start this post by welcoming new and existing students to The Leigh UTC. We are now into our 4th year as a University Technical College with our school continuing to grow and expand both in student numbers and opportunities that enable us to develop a more diverse curriculum.  

Our examinations that our former students have secured over the last 3 years proves that the value of a STEM based education in our current economy. Results on both GCSE and Post 16 are the best yet and maintain our position as one of the very best UTCs in the country. I am extremely proud of our Year 11 GCSE students reaching their potential across all their subjects at The Leigh UTC.  We have improved our performance from 2016 with our strongest set of academic outcome.

Photo left to right: Jason Wenden  2A*, Grade 8 in maths, 3A, grade 6 in English and 3 B grades.  Jason is returning to the Leigh UTC to study the Technical Baccalaureate route including L3 Engineering, A level maths and Extended Project Qualification.  Charlie Dring 2 A, 3B, Grade 6 in maths, Grade 5 in English  and 4C grades. Charlie is returning to the UTC to study the International Baccalaureate Career Pathway (IBCP).  Robbie White 2A, grade 6 in maths and English, 5B and 2C grades. Robbie is returning to the UTC to study IBCP pathway. Artur Bujok 1A*, 1A, 1B, Grade 4 in maths and English and 4 C grades. Artur is returning to the Leigh UTC to study the Technical Baccalaureate pathway including L3 Engineering, Core maths and Extended Project Qualification.  Ewen Johnston 1A*,2A, grade 6 in maths 3B, grade 4 in English and 2C grades. Ewan is starting a L3 Engineering Apprenticeship. 

The Leigh UTC GCSE Results

The new Inspiration Academy building is nearing  to completion with an anticipated completion date of March 2018, with last year being oversubscribed and with current demand for school places suggests the same for September 18/19.  This bodes well for the future as parents become more familiar with the benefits of a STEM based education (Science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and the career opportunity benefits this will bring.

It has been hugely satisfying to see our new intake of year 7 settle in so quickly. Students came from 27 different primary schools made history as the first to transfer to a University Technical College in the country.

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I am excited by our new build which will provide state of the art facilities across the Key stage 3 curriculum.  The sports fields are also making good progress with all 5 acres currently being cleared ready for levelling. 

The Leigh UTC will be upgrading its management information system during the half term to reflect our growing intake. This will provide parents with online access to pupil reports, calendars and parent pay.  We will continue to use classcharts, which provides parents with full online access to the behaviour trends of students across all subjects.  Our business partners fully support the use of classcharts and provide the range of rewards students can achieve.

Inspiration Academy @ The Leigh UTC currently has vacancy for a Parent Governor to serve on the Governing Body of Inspiration Academy @ The Leigh UTC. We would like to encourage parent/carers of registered students to nominate themselves if you feel you can add value to this role. If you would like to stand for Parent Governor please contact the office by info@theleighutc.org.uk or by telephone phone on 01322 626600.

On a final note….

With regards to the current  government performance measurement system, Progress 8, it does not take into account that The Leigh UTC takes pupils aged 14.  In the 18 months we have with them before they take their GCSEs, we make excellent progress but this is then compared to all other schools who have 5 years.  I also feel that destinations should be reflected in performance measures as it would show the number of students securing apprenticeship programmes and university places.  That said, I have increasing faith in parents that they too can see beyond this flawed measure.  Being able to take students aged 11 will benefit us in the next few years, as they will have secured the skills we hold dear at the UTC.

Students return back for Module 2 on Monday 6th November with the next module requiring students to sit mock examinations along with the opportunity of parents to meet with tutors to discuss your child’s progress on Wednesday 8th November.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support of The UTC,  have a restful half term enjoy and I look forward to seeing everyone back ready for Module 2 on Monday 6th November.

 

 





Preparing for Success Evening – Year 7’s

It was wonderful meeting so many year 7 parents last night for our ‘Preparing for Success’ evening. So many wonderful comments from parents and students about how much they are enjoying their learning experience at Inspiration Academy at The Leigh UTC so far. All details from presentations will be emailed to all year 7 parents. We look forward to seeing you all again for our first Parent and Tutor day on Wednesday 8th November 2017 in module 2.
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Head of College wins employer engagement super-user award

Carina Lindars, Head of College at the Inspiration Academy at The Leigh UTC won the Founders 4 Schools super-user accolade last night for her consistent efforts in accessing useful business engagement for students at the academy.

Super-User Award:

Carina Lindars from The Leigh UTC, South East LEP, England

Our Super-Users are widely renowned within the F4S community for using our services consistently and prolifically. They also possess a strong understanding of the value and impact of careers education. Key findings about careers and enterprise programmes suggest that they can: improve young people’s ability to make career decisions and their optimism about the future; help young people to increase their attainment and be more likely to enrol in post-secondary education; reduce young people’s likelihood of becoming unemployed; increase young people’s earnings after they complete their schooling. Our Super-Users are well on their way to ensuring that the students at their schools are given every opportunity to succeed in the future.

Carina Lindars from The Leigh UTC has facilitated 475 student-employer encounters since 2015 which far exceeds the national average of 289 per school!

Ms. Lindars has made it a priority to provide each students with three employer encounters in 2016 and four in 2015, which is one of our highest records ever. These encounters have been part of a motivational ‘Route to Success’ week, which is organised to provide them with more information on a wide range of STEM careers available through Apprenticeships, University or workplaces. Ms. Lindars is clearly well aware of the research which shows that four student-employer encounters helps to make young people more prepared for the world of work. The students at The Leigh UTC are well on their way to being employable.

Judges’ Comments:

 

  • Nominated for the volume of encounters.
  • To facilitate such a high number of student-employer encounters is impressive in itself, but we also love the way Carina has created a theme called ‘Route to Success’ that is so inspiring and relevant to the students. All the nominations in this category are super impressive, but Carina stood out for us.
  • We commend the sheer passion.
  • The volume of encounters and Carina’s commitment to giving her students access to business professionals is impressive.

 

As a result, Ms Lindars was interviewed by local radio station KMFM as part of a news item.

Congratulations to Ms Lindars on this recognition of her invaluable work in assisting students at The Leigh UTC.

 

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