Headteacher’s Blog 02/11/2018


Important Dates



Year 10 Science trip to the Sanger Institute, Cambridge


A group of 29 students visited the Sanger Institute in Cambridge on 30th October, with a focus on the the work being carried out on genetics and particularly the Genome project. The day started with an introduction to DNA and genes including a genome challenge task. The students heard an inspirational talk from a researcher about their work on human gut microbiota and the discovery of alternative treatments avoiding the use of antibiotics. An activity to map the potency of microbial bugs using gene data and a tour of the facilities concluded the rewarding day. The visit provided an excellent opportunity to explore how some of the work being studied at GCSE is being applied to solve real, life enhancing problems.


Brilliant Club visit to St John’s College Cambridge


A group of year 9 students have started a course, which began at St John’s a college at

Cambridge University. They went on a tour of the college and looked at what it would be like to be a student at Cambridge University. They have started a project looking at the link 

between music lyrics and poetry. They will be working with a PhD tutor over the coming months on their project. I’m excited to see the outcomes of their projects!


Making Post-16 Applications


All Year 11 students are reminded that they should be planning to submit applications to their intended Post-16 sixth form or college by Christmas, to ensure they have a plan in place which will enable students to then focus fully on studying for your GCSE’s through the spring and summer terms.


Applications to any Norfolk college or sixth form can be made on www.helpyouchoose.org  All students were introduced to this website at our Post 16 event at Ryston in July, however if you need further support with this, a leaflet was distributed to all Yr 11 Tutor Groups this week, which details step by step how to register and submit applications. 


To register, students will need their Unique Pupil Number which they were given during the Post 16 event at Ryston or during our post-16 parents event in October. Their Unique Pupil Number was also given to each student on the final page of their Assessment Reports, also distributed via Form Tutors this week.


If students are unsure which pathway to take post-16, advice can be found

on www.helpyouchoose.org as well as from our Careers Advisor, Mrs Sue Downing. Sue is in school every Wednesday and appointments with Sue can be made directly by contacting her on s.downing@beacon-east.co.uk or via Joanne Dickerson.


PISA Assessment


Well done and thank you to the 25 Year 11 students who took part in the International PISA Assessment on Wednesday 31st October. The external assessors who conducted the test were really impressed with their excellent behaviour and the hard work they put in. 

Year 13 University Offers

Well done to all of our year 13 students who have received offers from universities. It is also great to see the students working so hard to finalise their applications. To support their university applications we had a visit from the UEA outreach team to talk to the year 13 students about student finance and making choices on Wednesday. 

The year 13 mocks commence on the 12th November – we are supporting them in their studies by holding a revision skills session next Thursday.

Year 11 Exams

Year 11 exams start next week with REAL exams in engineering and cooking followed by MOCK exams for all subjects in the three weeks that follow. It is important that all students are here for every exam and that they give their best so we can use these papers to construct effective revision programmes for each student over the next few months. Students were reminded in assembly this morning about the importance of doing their best and this includes being prepared for the exams by way of punctuality and equipment and also their conduct in and around the exam venues. These exams are a good practise for the very strict conditions that will be enforced during the exam period next summer. We will be collecting students who are absent without very good reason during the exam period and ask for parents support in ensuring full attendance and engagement with these exams.

100% Attendance


A huge well done to our competition winner Connor Melton in year 11 who was rewarded for his 100% attendance record during the first half term with a Nando’s voucher!


Bus 6 Temporary Route Change


We have been made aware of an emergency road closure at Highbridge Road, Stowbridge which will start on Monday 5th November and is estimated to finish on Friday 9th November.

As a result of the closure Downham Market bus 6 will not be able to operate it’s normal route. Instead, during the closure, the bus will operate the following route:


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