Dear Parents


I’ve just had a preview of the newsletter which will be winging its way to you next week.  Once again, it re-enforces how busy the children are: it’s fantastic to see them participating in so many areas of school life.  I do wonder though if the printed newsletter has had its day. Our social media accounts are updated on such a regular basis the stories in the newsletter almost seem dated.  If you have a strong opinion on this, please do let me know.


Academic Review – Years 7-11

As many of you will be aware, the specification for GCSEs has changed recently.  We thought it an appropriate time to review our academic provision in the Senior School.  In particular, we are looking at the length of each lesson (35 minutes does seem rather short) and the time allocated to each subject.  It’s vitally important we provide sufficient teaching time for each subject so that we can maintain our high academic standards and make the most of the time the children are with us.  I do not envisage there will be any fundamental changes to the length of the day or the number of subjects we offer: it’s a chance to freshen up our timetable rather than radically alter what we do.  Once we have reviewed the school day I’d like to consider the thorny topic of homework: how much is set and how effective it is – watch this space!


A Masquerade Ball at Wynyard Hall – Friday 12 May

Details of the PTA Ball are attached and we’d love to see as many members of the Red House family there as possible.  Please remember: it’s open to friends, former pupils, parents of former pupils and anyone else who’d like to have a good time in excellent company!


Library – Prep & Senior School

The PTA has kindly agreed to help with a mini refurbishment of the library.  We’re hoping to create a more inviting learning space for the children which will facilitate collaborative learning.  Ideally, we’d like the work to be completed during the Easter holidays although this may be a little ambitious!



The PTA has also kindly agreed to part fund a defibrillator to strengthen our first aid provision.  All schools in Australia have them (which is where I first trained to use one) and the effect they can have on survival rates is quite astounding.  We will also be informing the local community when we have the device in school so that the local community can have access to the device.  However, we sincerely hope we will never have to use it.


Half term

Please remember: no school for the children next Friday (10 February).  The staff will be learning to save lives and sharing good practice.


With best wishes


Ken James



Whole School Letters


PTA Masquerade Ball – 12 May 2017


P&S School Letters


DofE Carlton Outdoor Education Centre Visit – 1 April 2017 – Mr P Heaton


Year 11 English Workbooks and Revision Guides – 3 February 2017 – Mrs C Fryer


Years 4-6 Invitation to join the chorus of Oliver! – 3 February 2017 – Mrs E Auty


Year 5 Visit of Beamish Museum – 23 March 2017 – Mr P Heaton


N&I School Letters


Year 3 Invitation to join the chorus of Oliver! – 3 February 2017 – Mrs E Auty

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