Year: 2017

Weekly Newsletter – Important dates and information

Dear Parents/Carers


Important dates and information


I would like to inform you that the summer term will end at 2:00pm on Friday 21st July 2017. Students will be dismissed directly following our whole academy assembly, where we will be celebrating the achievements and successes of our students over the past year.


The new academic year will commence for students on Wednesday 6th September 2018 as below:

  • New Year 7 students only  – 8:40am
  • Students in Years 8, 9, 10 and 11 – 10:00am


Term dates and INSET Days are listed below for your convenience, and the times of the day are outlined overleaf.

Autumn Term 2017 Students’ year
Academy opens to students Wednesday 6th September

Year 7 – 8:40am, Year 8, 9, 10 & 11 – 10:00am

Half Term Monday 23rd October – Friday 27th October
Autumn term ends Tuesday 19th December
Spring Term 2018 Students’ year
Academy opens to students Thursday 4th January
Half Term Monday 19th February – Friday 23rd February
Spring Term ends Thursday 29th March
Summer Term 2018  Students’ year
Academy opens to students Monday 16th April
May Day Monday 7th May
Half Term Monday 28th May –  Friday 1st June
Summer Term ends Friday 20th July




Monday 4th September 2017


Tuesday 5th September 2017


Wednesday 3rd January 2018


Thursday 12th April 2018

(Year 11  Students TBC)


Friday 13th April 2018

(Year 11 Students TBC)

Please note that on both Wednesday 19th July and Friday 21st July, ALL students must be off the Academy site by 2:00pm.

May I take this opportunity to thank you for your support for our academy over the past year, and to wish you all a pleasant and restful summer break.


Kind regards


Holly Hartley



Times of the Day


Monday to Friday – excluding Wednesday

Academy opens – 8:15am


Registration 8.45am – 9.00am
Period 1 9.00am – 10.00am
Period 2 10.00am – 11.00am
Morning Break 11.00am – 11.20am
Period 3 11.20am – 12.20pm
Period  4 12.20pm  – 1.20pm
Lunch Break 1.20pm – 2pm
Period 5

(Reading 2pm-2.15pm)

2pm – 3.15pm



Academy opens – 8:15am

Registration 8.45am – 9.00am
Period 1 9.00am – 10.00am
Period 2 10.00am – 11.00am
Morning Break 11.00am – 11.15am
Period 3 11.15am – 12.15pm
Lunch Break 12.15pm – 12:45pm
Period  4

(Reading 12.45pm-1pm)

12.45pm  – 2pm

Weekly Newsletter – Staying Safe online


Dear Parent/Carer

RE:Staying Safe Online

I would like to draw your attention to two social media apps that have recently come to my attention.


The first is ‘Live.Me’. Following a recent incident with a young secondary age pupil, this app has become of interest to Staffordshire police and the CSE unit (Child Sexual Exploitation). This application allows a live stream of the user that others can ‘follow’ and then view. This has been exploited by ‘followers’ encouraging users to perform inappropriate sexual acts whilst hundreds of people view it.


The second app is a little older but appears to be gathering momentum: Yellow. This is linked to Snapchat and is being described, by our young people, as ‘Teenage Tinder’. The app is free to download and only asks for a date of birth, which students can make up, a name and picture, the app then matches them with persons of the same age in a 60 miles radius of where their phone is plotting. They can swipe their phone to accept or decline if they like the look of them. The NSPCC has expressed concerns about this app as it allows strangers to send photos to children or vice versa.


In the current climate of social media saturation, please discuss these apps with your child to ensure, if at all, they are being used sensibly and appropriately.


Please visit the following website to help your child stay safe online


As always, I appreciate your support in being vigilant and raising awareness with your child. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact myself at school.


Yours sincerely


Darren Sanders

Assistant Principal

Staff Training Wednesday 21st June 2017

Dear Parent / Carer

Staff Training Wednesday 21st June 2017

I am writing to inform you that due to staff training there will no extra-curricular provision on Wednesday 21st June 2017.  Therefore all students will be required to be off site at 2pm.

Should this cause any issues please contact the Academy directly so that alternative arrangements can be made for your child.  The usual Wednesday provision will continue from Wednesday 28th June.

Thank you for your continued support.

Yours sincerely

Mrs C Reid

Vice Principal

Weekly Newsletter – Term Dates and Attendance Information

Dear Parent/Carer

Term Dates and Attendance Information

I write to inform you of the Academy term dates for 2017-18, which are outlined below.

Autumn Term 2017 Students’ year
Academy opens to students Wednesday 6th September
Half Term Monday 23rd October to Friday 27th October
Last day of Autumn Term Tuesday 19th December
Spring Term 2018
Academy opens to students Thursday 4th January
Half Term Monday 19th February to Friday 23rd February
Spring Term ends Thursday 29th March
Summer Term 2018
Academy opens to students Monday 16th April
May Day Monday 7th May
Half Term Monday 28th May to Friday 1st June
Summer Term ends Friday 20th July


Monday 4th September 2107
Tuesday 5th September 2107
Wednesday 3rd January 2018
Thursday 12th April 2018 (Yr 11 TBC)
Friday 13th April 2018 (Yr 11 TBC)

Please can I take this opportunity to remind you that all holidays and medical appointments, wherever possible, should be taken during the school holidays.  Progress in education depends on good attendance at school.  It is the responsibility of parents/carers to ensure that their child attends school regularly and on time.

With best wishes

Holly Hartley


Student Safety in the Wider Community

Dear Parents/Carers


Student Safety in the Community


Following consultation with Staffordshire Police, please find attached to this letter an information leaflet for parents/carers about youth violence and street gangs.   Please do take the time to read this information.


Staffordshire Police are committed to tackling the issues of gang related crime. Clearly as a school we are committed to securing the safety and welfare of our students – both during and beyond the Academy day.  Some parents may be concerned about their child and we would urge them to contact the numbers on the information leaflet or the Academy to seek support.


I am sure that many parents/carers watched the BBC1 drama last week called ‘Three Girls’.  This programme told the upsetting tale of the exploitation of young girls.  Whilst we do not wish to frighten or alarm parents/carers we would urge everyone to take note and be aware of the risks facing young people today.  It is vital that we maintain close scrutiny of the whereabouts of all children and that we are vigilant about who they are in contact with. This includes social media.


Should you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact Mrs Kelly Whitfield, Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead, at the Academy.


I would like to take this opportunity to wish you a pleasant half term break. We look forward to seeing students back in school on Monday 5th June, at 8:40am.


With best wishes


Holly Hartley


Weekly Newsletter – Punctuality / Mobile Phones

Dear Parents/Carers

Punctuality / Mobile Phones


The Academy and the Governing Body of Thistley Hough Academy place great emphasis on students being punctual to school and to lessons.  Lack of punctuality affects the learning and behaviour of students who arrive late, and impacts on the learning of others also. Please support us in ensuring that your child arrives to school on time every day, in full uniform and with the correct equipment, ready to work hard.

The Academy expectation is that students are in their form rooms or assembly at 8.45am. Therefore, those students who enter the Academy after 8.45am are deemed late and as such duty staff will take their names and they will be placed in a break time detention on the day they are late.  Any student who is late on more than two occasions in a week, and/or fail to attend break time detention, will be automatically be placed into Senior Leadership Team (SLT) detention for one hour after school on a Friday.

Mobile Phones/iWatches/Electronic Devices

May I take this opportunity to remind parents and carers that students are not permitted to use mobile phones for any purpose whatsoever whilst in the Academy. This includes making calls, texting, using the internet, taking photos/videos, and checking the time. Mobile phones must be switched off (not on silent mode), and out of view of all fellow students and staff at all times, and preferably kept in the student’s locker or personal bag. This also applies to iWatches and any other electronic devices or web enabled sources of information.

Thank you for your continued support.


With best wishes


Holly Hartley


Weekly Newsletter – Website/Social Media, Uniform and Important Information

Dear Parents/Carers

Website/Social Media, Uniform and Important Information

Academy Website

As you may have noticed we launched our new academy website last week (, which contains lots of useful information for parents and carers including term dates, uniform information, THActive club timetables and ways to support your child’s learning etc.  Please have a look around our new website for all of this, and further interesting and important information.

Thistley Hough Social Media

Regular updates and Academy News articles are also published on our social media channels. These can be found at:

  • Facebook – Thistley Hough Academy
  • Twitter – @thistleyhough

Please follow us to stay up to date with all academy events.


Please could I take this opportunity to remind all parents/carers that students should attend the Academy in full school uniform at all times. Full academy uniform information can be found on our website at and is included on the reverse of this letter for your convenience.

Fidget Spinners 

We have seen an increase in the number of students bringing Fidget Spinners into the Academy. The Academy policy is that students are not allowed to have them in school unless they have been given permission by our SENCO, Mr Paul Hughes. Staff will confiscate spinners from any student who does not have specific permission to use one whilst in school.

With best wishes

Holly Hartley





Thistley Hough Academy Uniform:


  • Purple blazer with school badge.
  • Plain white shirt with stiff collar and a top button.
  • School tie – this must be clean and free of graffiti.
  • Grey school trousers (not leggings, tight fitted trousers or jeans).
  • Grey ‘A’ line school skirt – knee length (tight fitted skirts are not acceptable). Skirts must not be rolled up at the waist.
  • A plain grey or purple Dupatta may be worn (tassels and embroidery are not acceptable). Headscarves must be plain grey.
  • Plain black tights or black or white ankle socks.
  • Plain black leather/leather looking shoes (not platforms, boots, trainers or any sports/fashion branded footwear. Canvas shoes or pumps are not allowed). Ankle boots may be worn under trousers, but are not allowed with a skirt.

Ofsted Report 2017

Dear Parents /Carers Ofsted

Inspection – March 2017

As you are aware the Academy was inspected by Ofsted on 22nd – 23rd March 2017.

The report has now been finalised and will be published on the Ofsted website on 26th April 2017.

I am delighted to announce that Thistley Hough Academy has been graded as Good with some Outstanding features.

I would like to thank all those members of the school community who shared their comments with the inspection team and also those parents/carers who took the time to share their views on Parent View, Ofsted’s on-line questionnaire.

The full report is now available on for you to read and hard copies can be collected from Reception.

Copies will also be emailed home to parents/carers.

Please do let us know if you would like us to post one home to you. Please find below a summary of some of the key points from the inspection report:

• “The school’s work to promote pupils’ personal development and welfare is outstanding.”

• “Pupils benefit from an extensive range of activities which help them to develop selfconfidence and high aspirations for themselves.”

• “Pupils are well cared for at the school and parents agree.”

• “Leaders place a high priority on developing pupils’ self-confidence and aspirations. The wide and diverse range of extra-curricular activities has an impact on this.”

• Relationships across the school are positive and highly conducive to good learning. Pupils work hard and are polite, courteous and well-mannered.” • “The school prepares pupils very well for the next stage of their education or employment.”

• “Leaders are successfully unlocking the academic and personal potential in all pupils.”

• Teaching, learning and assessment have improved considerably since the last inspection and as a result “Teaching is Good”. As a result, pupils make consistently good progress. Teaching in English is now a ‘significant strength’. The Creative Education Academies Trust is a company limited by guarantee Registered in England and Wales no 7617529 Registered Office: 7 Sicilian Avenue, LONDON WC1A 2QR The Creative Education Academies Trust is a charity, regulated by the Secretary of State for Education

• In 2016 every Year 11 pupil made progress that was “well above average across a range of subjects, including English” and every Year 11 pupil who has left the school over the past three years has moved on to higher education or employment with training.

• “All groups of pupils make good progress across year groups”.

• Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities “make good progress because they receive effective support”.

These points are just a small snapshot of the full report and I do hope that you take the time read it in its entirety.

I am absolutely delighted with the findings of our inspection and this is a great moment for everybody at Thistley Hough; staff, students and families alike. Walking around the school every day, I see great dedication, ambition, high expectations and acts of brilliance and kindness, big and small. This is the Thistley Hough that I know and love and I am delighted that Ofsted saw the same.

As I have always maintained, our vision is to be graded as ‘Outstanding’ overall and the findings of this inspection are a significant step on this journey. As we start the next chapter in the proud history of Thistley Hough, I look forward to working with the whole-school community to realise this but, more importantly, making sure that every student that leaves us is enabled to do great things with their life.

Yours sincerely

Holly Hartley

(A very proud) Principal

Ofsted Inspection

Dear parent or carer

Inspection of Thistley Hough Academy by Ofsted

We have just told your child’s school that we will inspect it on 22 March 2017. The lead inspector will be Richard Sutton. We are writing to you because we would like to know what you think about the school. Please take a few minutes to read the leaflet which came with this letter. It explains why we inspect schools, and what happens during an inspection.

Your views about the school are important to us

If you are a registered parent or carer of a pupil at the school (including pupils on sick leave or who are temporarily excluded), you can tell us your views about the school by completing Ofsted’s online survey, Parent View, at:

Parent View asks for your opinion on 12 aspects of your child’s school, including the progress made by your child, the quality of teaching, how the school deals with bullying and poor behaviour. It also provides a free-text box for you to make additional comments, if you wish. The inspectors will use the online survey responses when inspecting your child’s school. Written comments can also be sent to the school in a sealed envelope, marked confidential and addressed to the inspection team.

To register your views, you will need to provide your email address, which will be held securely. It will not be used for any purpose other than providing access to the online survey. Neither schools nor Ofsted will have access to any email addresses.

Please complete the online survey by 11am on 22 March 2017 as this will give the inspection team more time to consider your views. However, we will consider all online responses that are completed during the inspection, although the free-text box facility will not be available after noon on 23 Mar 2017.

Speaking to an inspector

If you are unable to complete the online survey, it may be possible to speak to an inspector during the inspection, for instance at the start of the school day, or to pass on messages to the inspectors if you are unable to speak to them in person. Inspection administrators will be happy to make the necessary arrangements. If concerns are raised about child protection, we may have to pass the information we receive to social services or the police. You can contact the administrators on 03000131358. Inspectors will be pleased to receive your comments, but cannot deal with complaints about individual pupils or settle disputes between you and the school.

Thank you in advance for taking the time to complete the online survey.

Yours faithfully

Cathie Mair