Following the half term break the staff and students returned refreshed to begin continue the term's work. This term, like all terms, we have lots of work to do. the first assessment point of the year follows next month and for the next few weeks the teaching team will be preparing students and providing them with everything they need to make that next step of progress. We've talked this term about being progress driven and showed the students a graph of what most people think progress looks like. It's an arrow going in a diagonal line from bottom left to top right. Of course that's not what progress looks like at all. It's a line that sometimes goes in the right direction then does a u-turn, goes round in circles for a bit then continues on the trajectory until, eventually, it reaches the top right position. We get there in the end. But there are many pitfall and setbacks along the way and everyone makes different turns. At LECA we ask the students and parents to accept the pitfalls as part of the journey to success. Progress isn't linear and never has been.

During my walks around the academy this week and my discussions with staff I was struck by a real sense of purpose in lessons. Year 9 especially have taken the responsibility of being the elders of LECA seriously and clearly understand the importance of their positive role modelling to the younger students. They are focused in lessons and know that they only have this year to prepare themselves for the intense rigour of Key Stage 4. It's time to lay the foundations for that success now and also to make the most of those subjects they may not take in year 10 and 11. A three year Key Stage 3 means that students can experience a broad curriculum before it narrows in Key Stage 4. This should be embraced as a strength of LECA's curriculum offer and one that means that all students gain a wealth of cultural capital and knowledge before specialising.

On the subject of Key Stage 4, we are currently finalising the Options programme for this year and this half term there will two events, one for students and one for parents and students. The first is a careers fair for all students on Thursday 28th of November and on the same day, at 6pm, we will hold an Options Information Evening for both students and parents.  This week we also tested the online choices platform, Options Online, which will be used by students (and parents) to make their their Key Stage 4 choices. It's a brilliant platform which simplifies the whole process for everyone and we will be showing a preview of it on the 28th. Once we have configured it to suit LECA, we will inform students and parents that it is 'live' and choices will be able to be made. This is likely to happen in February and we can begin the process of grouping students and timetabling them for the following year. We're really looking forward to this next step in the LECA journey. It marks a significant point in our development as a school and begins the next phase for our students - the journey to GCSE success.


Scott Gaskins

Head of School, LECA