This month has been a difficult one for Ribston Hall as we saw multiple cases of COVID-19 in the school community. This meant that a number of students in Year 11 and Year 8 having to self-isolate. Luckily, no one has suffered badly and we are looking to welcome most of the students back into school in the next few days. The students switched into 'live learning' easily and I would like to thank our teaching staff who have been working very hard to ensure all students receive the best learning experience possible both inside and out of school.
There has still been a lot going on in school with a successful Charity Week and Design and MFL challenges to keep students engaged. We have now submitted our plans for the Science block which was delayed due to lockdown and so you will see we are moving closer to this exciting build becoming actual bricks and mortar (please see below).
We are now preparing for Christmas which is usually a very busy time for us. We are still planning on capturing as much of the Ribston Christmas spirit as possible this year with a "12 days of Christmas" canteen menu as we cannot hold our usual dinner, a virtual "Ribston's Got Talent" that we always hold on the last day as well as a professionally filmed "Christmas Performance Evening". Thank you to all of the parents who have donated to enable us to have our evening captured so we can share it with everyone. We look forward to showcasing Ribston talents very soon.
New Science Block – 2021
I am delighted to share with you the design for our new science block. This new standalone building will be situated on the south side of the school site and will provide accessible accommodation for six laboratories, complete with two spacious prep rooms, staff workroom and office space.
In partnership with the Department for Education, Roberts Limbrick Ltd, Kier Construction Ltd and Gloucestershire County Council, plans have been developed over recent months that will provide state of the art facilties for all of our budding young scientists.
Our Curriculum Lead for Science, Jon Cole and Lead Science Technician, Julie Bishop have contributed to the design of the new building and are busy working with the design team on the internal specifications.
An application to Gloucester City Council for planning permission has recently been submitted and full plans of the development are available to view by following this link:
If you wish to leave any feedback about the development please email your comments, by Friday 18th December2020 to:
We look forward to sharing updates with you as the programme progresses.
Anti-Bullying Week (16th-20th November)
We believe that all forms of bullying are unacceptable as they are inconsistent with the ethos and aims of our school. Ribston Hall is committed to ensuring that all students have the opportunity to learn in a supportive, compassionate and tolerant environment.
Since April, the School Council have been speaking to senior staff about bullying, and its impact on young people. A series of activities for Anti-Bullying week were led by these students and included an assembly, which can be watched here.
Our week started by taking the opportunity to encourage people to express themselves and celebrate their individuality and what makes us all unique. We expressed this by wearing odd socks, here are images of some of the staff and students who took part.
Key Stage 3 students worked through activities in tutor time about the role each of us play in friendship. Key Stage 4 students looked at staying safe online and cyber bullying. Each form in school produced a jigsaw piece, we would like everyone to sign the puzzle to make a pledge in support of Anti-Bullying work in school. This is a great example from 8.4!
The week culminated in another opportunity for our school community to unite against Anti-Bullying, as staff and students were invited to wear something blue to show support. Thank you to all students who took part in any activities during the week.
Bullying, however, does not just happen during one week in the year, and I would like to draw your attention our Anti Bullying policy which is in place to support this work, and can be found here. Our work in school continues with our PSHE drop down day on the 9th December where year 7 will be looking at friendships and anti-bullying using the Girls on Board approach.
Ribston Charity Week for Children In Need
Even though we had the challenge organising and managing Charity week whilst all students are zoned in their year group bubbles, it was still a huge success! Thanks to all of the hard work by staff and students, we a Ribston record breaking £2368!
We asked each year to create different stalls, representing the houses and we saw stalls ranging from raffles to Nerf gun challenges! All of the fundraisers were attended by each year group and it was great to see everyone having fun as well as raising money.
The years could only purchase from their own bubble, yet Ribston still managed to raise an incredible amount of money for Children In Need.
All of the House Captains were very impressed by everyone’s efforts and are excited to announce the following results for money raised per house:
We also saw some amazing efforts made by the Sixth Formers, with the teacher car wash that raised a total of £63 and the chocolate hamper, which raised an amazing £242.
Our non-school uniform day on the Friday was a great end to a fantastic week as we raised a further £1316 through donations on Parent Pay.
We are so proud of all of your charitable efforts. Well done!
Sixth Form students in Year 13 have been completing their UCAS applications this term. This year, we are very proud to have twelve early entry students who are applying for Oxbridge, Russell Group and medical/veterinary courses, as well as to Conservatoires and prestigious overseas Universities.
Three of our students have already received interviews for Oxford and Cambridge next week are currently preparing for these. The rest are eagerly awaiting invitations to interview and offers of places. We wish them all the best of luck.
Some of this group are pictured below. From top left to bottom right:
Isobel Hill has applied for History and English at Oxford.
Jade Overthrow has applied for Psychological and Behavioural Studies at Cambridge.
Marli Allen has applied for History at Oxford and has received four offers, one of which is ‘unconditional’.
Zoe Sparkes has applied for Human, Social and Political Sciences at Cambridge.
Meghan Riley has applied for Adult Nursing.
Kaitlyn Smith has applied for Veterinary Medicine/Science.
Hannah Davis has applied for Biomedical Sciences at Oxford.
Katie Smith has applied for Veterinary Medicine/Science.
Lauren Smith has applied for Veterinary Medicine/Science.
Grace Johnson has applied for Chemistry at Oxford.
I am pleased to say that despite all the other study pressures our Sixth Form have to deal with, some of our mathematicians found time to take part in the Senior Maths Challenge recently.
Thank you to Hannah Paveley who helped us organise the event. This is a very prestigious competition testing students problem solving skills in unfamiliar and challenging contexts. All students who took part will receive a certificate for participation. I am very pleased to congratulate Daniel Smith for gaining a Silver award and Hannah Paveley, Jack Allen and Toby Dabenett-Widdows (all Year 13), who all gained a Bronze award. Thank you and well done to those who took part.
Mrs N Walker Curriculum Lead - Maths
Love Through the Ages Virtual Conference
On Monday 9th November, English Literature A-Level students were fortunate enough to attend a virtual conference organised by The Training Partnership. With doughnuts and coffee aplenty, students settled into the library for a day of lectures, exam preparation sessions and Q&As all centred around the theme of Love Through the Ages; the topic studied for Paper 1 of the A2 exam.
The day began with a talk from Dr Simon Avery, a lecturer from the University of Westminster who took students through romantic tropes as seen in popular 19th century texts such as Wuthering Heights. We then moved on to a specific love poetry session with teacher and author, Neil Bowen. The morning session ended with a fruitful discussion about exam technique from an AQA examiner. After lunch, was a session on love as presented in Shakespeare, by Professor Emma Smith from the University of Oxford. The day culminated with a number of readings from celebrated poet, Wendy Cope OBE, who discussed her own poetry and shared other topical poems on the theme of love.
Mrs L Brook Curriculum Lead - English
Design & Technology Creative Challenge
Before Half-term the Design Department set students a challenge create a unique pumpkin design and do a photo shoot.
The winners for the ‘October Half Term Design Challenge’ are as follows:
1st place: (D) Rosa Jolly - Yr8
2nd Place: (F) Scarlett Whelan - Yr8
3rd place: (G) Simran Nijjar - Yr7
Huge congratulations to the winners above. Superb entries! Thank you so much again to those that participated and I look forward to seeing the entries for our next challenge.
Mrs N Finch Design & Technology Department
A very generous Year 10 parent has made a substantial donation to the Wellbeing department. The team have already bought some books and a selection of sensory toys that can be given to students to help them feel a little calmer, focused and more at ease when they are feeling very anxious.
Our Wellbeing area is due to be refurbished soon with a new relaxation and cool down area created. The rest of the money will go towards making this area a peaceful and relaxed space away from the bustle of school life for a few moments of calm should they be needed. This area will include the books already purchased plus posters and inspirational materials to motivate and encourage our students. Such a welcome and kind gift.
The Wellbeing Team
Dance Showcase - One of our student's Richa in 9R is preparing for her performance in our Virtual Christmas Concert.
Richa's chosen dance style is Bharatanatyam, which she has trained in for 9 years and has now reached expert level, Grade 5 in her examinations. In the pictures you see Richa wearing one of her three beautiful sari's which is traditionally worn for performances and productions.
For the solo performance, she will be dancing to a remix of the Christmas classic, O Come All Ye Faithful, and fusing cinematic dance with the classical Indian Bharatanatyam. Don't forget to look out for her in the showcase!
Ribston Art Corner
This month, Mr Collins wanted to share some fantastic Year 7 Artwork inspired by Andy Goldsworthy.
Modern Foreign Languages - Great MFL Bake-off
The MFL Department set a Bake-off Challenge this month.
After much deliberation, we were pleased to announce the winners of the Great MFL Bake-Off. Annie Nielsen (7.3) and Lucy Carter (8.5) are the joint Star Bakers for their creative and topical designs. Bravo!
All entrants will receive a certificate, and the MFL Department will be in contact with the winners directly. We were amazed by the standard and only regretful that we could not eat them! Thank you to everyone who participated!
The MFL Department
Ribston Spirit - Students keeping up morale in their form groups!
"This Girl Can" with the PE Department
Following on from our last ‘This Girl Can’ page in Ribston Roar, the PE Department wanted to find out what new ‘lockdown’ activities are going on amongst Ribston students and staff. Here are some examples of the range of activities that are helping to keep us physically and mentally healthy. Exercise is especially important in the current climate because it can reduce stress, boost the immune system, and improve sleep.
On the 11th November, Ribston Hall marked Remembrance Day with a two-minute silence at 11am as well as some activities during form time that were put together by the History department. Some of the information that was discussed with the students is detailed below:
After the battle of Somme in the First World War, soldiers returned to see the trenches covered in bright red poppies. This is why the red poppy became the symbol to remind us of those who have gone.
At 11 0’ clock on the 11th day of the 11th month people stay silent for two minutes to remember all those who died during the war. We stay silent for two minutes to remember, have gratitude and to consider those who fought in wars past and who still suffer as a result of wars in the present.
But, history has not always remembered ALL people who fought for our freedom…
After Britain joined the First World War on 4 August 1914, Black and Asian recruits could be found in all branches of the armed forces, but in the history books, their contribution has largely been overlooked.
Some of these servicemen made the ultimate sacrifice but, with the passage of time, with the exception of a few, the contributions they made remain untold.
1.3 million Indians served in world war one and 74,187 Indian soldiers died. By the war's end in November 1918, a total of 15,204 black men, had served in the BWIR (British West Indies Regiment). Some more information about these brave soldiers can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3lg0mAX0FOM
In 1920, there was a proposal that the body of an unknown soldier, sailor or airman lying in an unmarked grave abroad be returned to England for burial in Westminster Abbey. This was to symbolise all those who had died for their country, but whose place of death was not known, or whose body remained unidentified. A short video about this event can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tN06NctDdTA
So many stories, so many unknown warriors, so many who made the ultimate sacrifice to give us the freedom we have today. We all have histories, families, a shared past. We should, and will remember ALL of those who served for us.
Mrs L Derbyshire Curriculum Lead - Humanities
The Eco Committee Team are collecting plastic bottle tops which will all contribute to a big plastics awareness outdoor mural.
Students should bring these in and put them into their designated House Bottle-top bin adjacent to the House Noticeboards in the corridor by Wellbeing. Each has the name of the House on the front - it is a contest to see which house donates the most plastic tops.