As Christmas draws near and the term comes to an end this, the last blog of 2018, will begin with some thank yous. The first thank you is to all of the staff at LECA. We are a small team here but a team that works tirelessly both in the classroom and around the site to ensure the students get a great experience and are safe. We thank our parents too, for without their support the students at LECA would not make the progress they are making. It is small things that make a huge difference: talking to their children about their studies, encouraging reading, encouraging participation in sport and clubs, and getting them to school. I mentioned a few weeks ago now how important attendance is and how LECA's attendance bucks the national trend by some margin. This is down to the commitment of our parents to send their children to school but also the determination of our staff to ensure attendance is celebrated and rewarded.
Thank you also goes to our students who are a pleasure to teach and who surprise us every day with their 'never give up' attitudes. At the Christmas Showcase this was in clear evidence. The hall was packed and for some students stepping into the lights was a step too far. Then, as the show progressed, they took the plunge and that was fantastic to see. But it doesn't just happen in events like this - it happens every day in every class and all we ask is that students keep going and try to work through whatever challenge they face.
A special thank you goes to Mrs Radcliffe who had the great idea for students in her classes to write thank you slips to teachers. We cannot tell you what these meant to us and some of the comments - giving reasons for their thanks - genuinely moved us. Thank you for that simple act of kindness - it really meant a lot.
Well done to all who performed in the Showcase and thank you to everyone who supported us: teachers, parents, Clare Gathercole (our brilliant chef along with her team of helpers) and everyone who contributed prizes to the amazing raffle. We raised £230 over the evening in donations and raffle money and this will go straight back into the Performing Arts Faculty to ensure we can put on even more shows in the future. After Christmas, Mr Chris Jones will join us in the Drama department adding the finishing touch to a thriving Arts Faculty. Mr Jones has a track record in producing incredible shows and has acted on stage and screen before turning to teaching. We welcome Mr Jones and look forward to him working with our students.
This week is short but we have a lot packed in. On Tuesday, we welcome Rev Howard and his team from the Pop Up Church in for a Christmas Assembly. We will also be joined by representatives from Littleport Food Bank and we will be presenting them with seasonally decorated food boxes which have been made (and filled) by the students in tutor time. We have always placed charitable giving and fundraising at the heart of our ethos and this is one of the highlights of the year for us.
Finally, on Wednesday we are running a No Pens day for periods one to three, meaning that the teachers have to come up with creative ways of showing learning and progress in their lessons. Examples from other schools include building and modelling, filming, debating and acting. It should be a lot of fun and we look forward to seeing the students enjoying learning without writing anything. Then, during period 4, we have the first ever House Shout competition. This is the brainchild of Mrs Digby who brought the idea from her previous school. In the last few weeks, our four houses have been learning a song chosen by their house leaders and on Wednesday they will have a 'sing off' to which which house performs the best. Another first for LECA and, judging by the rehearsals, it should be brilliant. Watch out for photos on Facebook and Twitter. Finally, to finish the year, it is the House Quiz, a firm favourite with the staff and students. House Teams of 4 (plus 2 subs) will compete against each other and the winners will add precious house points to their year total. Every point counts so it is usually fiercely competitive and a really fun way to finish the term.
All that remains is for me, on behalf of everyone at LECA, to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Peaceful New Year.
Head of School, LECA