CRA Newsletter 07.01.2022 Half Term 3 - january 7th 2022

Principal's Update

Happy New Year! I hope you had a good Christmas break. We were really pleased to see the students back on Wednesday looking smart and refreshed for the new term.

In our whole school assembly we talked about the importance of thinking of others and being kind. We talked about small acts, that don't cost us a lot in time or energy, that can make a real difference to people's day, such as a smile or a polite 'Good morning', a kind comment or help with a task.

Clearly, we are experiencing a very challenging time at the moment and we talked about how sharing a simple act of kindness, on a daily basis, will be of benefit to our community.

One of the favourite parts of my school day is when I stand on the gate in the morning and greet the students as they are coming into school.

This is a very important term for year 11 with the touchstone assessments fast approaching. It is important that the year 11 students compile a revision timetable and pace themselves well in relation to their revision for the final exams, so they are not 'cramming' at the last minute. Mr Lovett will be discussing this in Year 11 assembly, and we would appreciate you discussing this with your son or daughter.

Mr Webb, our Games master took the students and staff through the various competitions planned for this term and I think The Cube was one of the favourite ones discussed. I am looking forward to seeing the students getting involved particularly in the speed stacking event to see how they have developed their skills over the year.

Finally, with the weather getting colder next week, and with having to keep the academy well ventilated, ensure your children are wearing layers under their CRA uniform to keep them warm. An outdoor coat for break and lunch times, plus their journey to school, is also essential.

I hope you have a good weekend,

Mrs Jones - Principal

Teacher Training Opportunities

At Charles Read Academy, we are pleased to be the lead school of the East Midlands Hub of National Mathematics and Physics SCITT and the East Midlands and South Yorkshire Hub for National Modern Languages SCITT. (School-centre Initial Teacher Training)

We want to share this with our school community, so that you and your wider networks can be aware of the opportunities to train to teach as Mathematics, Physics or Modern Languages Teachers with our hub.

Please click on the link below for further details on how to register your interest.

Home Lateral Flow Testing

Return to school testing - January 2022

The return to school testing held this week was a resounding success, and my sincere thanks goes to the entire testing team, support staff and of course the students; who all behaved impeccably and with a sense of maturity during the process.

We now continue with twice weekly testing for all students and staff in an effort to keep our community safe and well.


Please click the link below to review the latest information we have received from the NHS regarding student vaccinations.

Routine weekly testing

When you complete lateral flow tests at home on a Sunday and Wednesday evening, please report the results via these links to both the NHS and also CRA.

If you require further kits, students can collect these from reception.

Did you know that parents and support bubbles of school children, as well as anyone who has to leave home to go to work, can now get rapid Covid-19 tests twice a week. Order yours now here.

Further guidance from the Government and Department of Education in respect of home testing can be found below:

A copy of the risk assessment and privacy policy relating to Lateral Flow Testing can be found on the CRA website.

Mr Linforth - Academy Operations Manager


As an academy we made a great start to our new homework policy introduced during the Autumn Term. Each student who completed all pieces of Prep homework accumulated approximately 30hours of self- regulated learning. The homework policy not only supports students to develop self-regulation which is a fundamental skill needed in the work place and our personal lives but also a student’s long term memory of core knowledge.

During Spring Term 3 we are re-launching homework in assembly on Monday 10th January. Our focus this term will be on the general presentation and that all pieces of Prep Homework meet the expected standards. Students will be reminded of how homework should be set out in their Prep books and how to conduct the 30min session.

Please find the instructional video below which demonstrates how to complete the Prep Homework and the expected standards in order to support your child at home.

Those students who do not complete their Prep Homework (KS3-4) and/ or Additional homework (KS4) or who do not meet the expectations of the homework will receive a Prep Detention and will be informed during Roll Call by their Tutor. Two Prep Detentions in one week will result in an MCAS home and a phone call from the students Tutor. Three Prep Detentions in one week will result in an MCAS home and a day in IE. Please click to review the Homework Policy as a reminder of the responsibilities from all parties.

Frequency of homework

Yr7-10 students should hand in their first Prep homework on Tuesday 11th January during Roll Call. Yr11 students are now revising for their Touchstone assessments and their first prep homework is expected on Monday 17th January during Roll Call.

The online homework table will be is now available and can be found below.

Responding to some feedback from parents/carers and students we will also be issuing all students with a printed version of the homework table alongside their packs.

Thank you for your continued support with the homework policy.

Mrs Cooper - Whole School Teaching & Learning Lead


Students have now had 2 terms to get used to the detention systems.

We are now not operating a second chance detention. Students will be expected to attend their detention on the day of their detention.

Failure to attend will result in a day in IE (the usual sanction if a student fails to attend their second chance detention.)

CRA Senior Leadership Team

Humanities- Travel & Tourism

Yr11 students will be sitting their external exam Component 2: Influences on Global Travel and Tourism February 2022. Students should be revising from now until the exam using their Knowledge Organiser and the Prep Homework set. Students should also try to spend more time revising from the knowledge organiser using activities such as:

  • Flash cards of key terms
  • Mind map for each of the 3 parts (A, B, C)
  • Self-quizzing

Mrs Cooper - Head of Humanities

Year 11 Maths

From this week year 11 will only have one Hegarty task to complete for Prep work however they will also have a Half exam paper to complete each week. These need to be handed in every Wednesday in their maths lessons.

Also from the recent Mock papers, year 11 pupils have been sent home with a QLA (an example is below). This links to Hegarty Maths clip numbers, so if a pupil wants to do extra independent work they should look at the topics which are amber or red and then watch the Hegarty Video, then complete the task.

Mr Branch-Evans - Head of Maths Faculty

SEND Update

This week, support staff have been busy LFT testing all students on return to school; despite being short staffed we are working hard as a team to make sure we are covering what we can until we reach full staff capacity again.

The Assistant SENCO is working closely with the Attendance Officer in alleviating attendance concerns and we continue to work closely with the Pastoral Team to support all students.

Harrison, Logan, McKenzie, Kai, and Cameron have all achieved the Forest Explorers Bushcraft Fire Skills badge. They are the first students to get this award and they will be moving onto the First aid and knife skills awards this term. We are really proud of how the students are progressing in their interventions and how their confidence, especially in reading, is growing.

Please do get in touch if you have any questions about the SEN Department and how we can support your child within school.

Mrs Thurlby - LSA

CRA Values

It was a pleasure to celebrate so many students during our rewards assembly on the last day of term. Over 100 students received certificates and recognition for subject awards, ATL (attitude to learning), attendance, reading, sporting achievements, fundraising and resilience.

Principal's Resilience Award

Our Principal's Resilience Award for term 2 was awarded to Cali Warren in Year 10 who has coped well with some difficult home circumstances.

Cali is an excellent student with 100% attendance and zero behaviour points this academic year, an amazing achievement. Well done to Cali and here are her thoughts on winning:

Q - What do you feel you have done to deserve this award?I feel I deserved this award as I have had a really rough year with family losses and other things. Recently my parents and older brother got Covid, during this time I had to cope with looking after my younger brother, attending school and completing homework as well as trying hard in my lessons. I feel that I showed great resilience and courage throughout 2021 and will continue to do so.

Q - What does the award mean to you? - I was very surprised and very happy to receive the award. Even more so that my brother Max was able to present it to me whilst on Christmas leave from the Army. It makes me proud that the effort and hard work I have put in, has been noticed.

Q - What would you say to someone who struggles to be resilient? - I would tell people to keep trying because eventually what they are aiming for will happen. It doesn't matter how many times they fail because there will be one time that they get it right. I would also say that they shouldn't give up and they should continue trying because they will get there. Being resilient is so important in life.


Change to PE Kit Supplier

We have been advised by the Trusts procurement team that the manufacturer of the PE kits for our school is no longer able to fulfil their commitment to supplying us. We know some people experienced long delays in receiving orders this academic year, but had hoped the situation may improve.

Therefore we have ceased the contract with them and the Trust are searching for a new supplier that will be able to fulfil orders ready for the start of the next academic year.

We have been advised that anyone still awaiting a delivery will be refunded and should have already been contacted at the start of this month - please let me know if that is not the case (we will require your order number and item details).

In the meantime should your child need replacement kit we would ask you to observe the following uniform guidelines:

  • Plain black, navy or white t shirts - NO LOGOS
  • Plain black, navy or white shorts and socks - NO LOGOS

Failure to do so could so will be considered a breach of the uniform policy.

We appreciate your support on this matter and apologies for any inconvenience caused

Uniform Expectations

It is vital that we ensure everyone is adhering to the Academy Uniform Policy - details of which can be found here.

Students without a medical note will go into IE for incorrect uniform.

Outdoor coats

Outdoor coats can be worn during breaks and before and after school, but should not be worn when walking inside the academy. May we also remind you that hoodies are not appropriate, and shouldn’t be worn as a replacement for an outdoor coat.

Face Masks

Masks are to be worn to be worn on all school transport, during transitions between lessons and in communal indoor spaces as well as lessons. Please ensure you have a spare mask just in case it requires changing throughout the day. We appreciate that communication whilst wearing a mask can be tricky, so please see the poster below for tips on effective communication whilst wearing a mask.

Masks should be blue or black and plain and worn at all times whilst inside the school buildings.

Parent Governor Vacancies

Charles Read Academy are now looking for two parent governors.

The role of parent governor is an important one. School governors play an important role in supporting the school. They can influence the strategic vision and direction and hold the senior leadership team to account.

Why become a school governor?

Benefits include:

  • Developing your professional skills and experience such as strategic planning, and team working, both of which are valued by employers and can assist your own career development
  • Building relationships and networks in your locality
  • Supporting children and young people in your community.

There is one meeting every half term. The meetings usually last approximately an hour and a half and can be accessed via Teams if coming into school is too difficult due to transport or child care issues.

We would love to hear from you if you are interested in this role by completing your declaration of interest in the Governor election procedure below:

Thinking Ahead – My Future, My Choice

Attention Year 8 & Year 9!

  • What are your future plans & career possibilities?
  • What plans to do you have after you have completed your GCSEs?
  • Do you plan to go on to further/higher education? If so what courses might you study?
  • What career ideas do you have for the future at the moment?

In year 7, 8 and 9 you will be learning new skills and knowledge that will give you the confidence to help you plan your next steps. This process starts with your careers education in school which will encourage you to think about your strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes. You will also start to make some important decisions that could influence your future career path as you will be choosing your subjects to study for GCSE. This process will begin for all Year 9 students early next year.

Each week we will show you examples of the various careers linked to the subject you are studying. This week’s career idea is ‘Jobs related to Hairdressing and beauty therapy"

Mr Rees - Career's Support


Welcome back to all of our wonderful students!

This week we have been celebrating some excellent attendance from some of our tutor groups. Terra 11, Aqua 9, Terra 8 & Terra 7 have all achieved 100% attendance during this week with Terra achieving 95.1% attendance overall.

Please see the link below for up to date NHS guidance for COVID related illness and subsequent isolation procedures.

Covid Absence Reporting

Please can you support us by following the correct CRA procedure for reporting absence for their child. If you are leaving a message or sending an email- please give the specific reason for absence (see below) and make sure this is done as soon as you are aware of the absence.

Please use the following code to help us understand the absence:

  1. Suspected case of coronavirus (COVID-19)
  2. Confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19)
  3. Required to remain at home or isolate in line with government guidance This includes pupils required to isolate after returning from abroad
  4. Absent due to isolation for other reasons
  5. Absence not related to COVID.

In short: When you contact us, please provide the following infomration:

  • child’s name
  • their form group
  • The number from 1-5 that explains their absence (see above.)

Please do not hesitate to contact me on 01476 550333 ext 502 or kcoleman@charlesreadacademy.co.uk to discuss ways to support your child's attendance.

CRA - Lets work together to make every day count!

Mrs Coleman - Attendance Manager

House News

House NEW YEAR CUP underway

The CRA Virtual Tour of Route 66 is underway as students and staff have been getting active in the trust wide ‘New Year Cup’ competition. So far we have covered almost 400km but we need your support to reach our target of 3,200km by the end of January, the same distance of Route 66 from Chicago to LA.

To enter, all you need to do is record and screenshot the distance of a walk, jog or cycle and email housechampionship@charlesreadacademy.co.uk with your name and distance. Every little helps and we are even encouraging students to record their morning walk to the bus stop – if everyone did that every morning we would easily reach our target.

Two Cups will be awarded to the school which covers the highest number of kilometres during the month by either cycling, walking or running, and the school which covers the largest average km per head. Medals will also be awarded to the highest individual pupils and staff members for walking, running and cycling.

250 House points are on offer! Get involved and play your part.

Terra Top Totaliser

Terra begin the new year in top spot of the House Championship leader board with Aqua and Caeli hot on their heels.

There is another 1,650 house points on offer this term with a number of exciting competitions lined up, including; Speed Stacking, Table Tennis, Master Chef and The Cube.

Heads of House and the Games Master will be sharing more information of how to get involved in the upcoming competitions soon.

Term 3 Competitions

Please keep an eye on our social media platforms (Twitter and Instagram) - for updates @CRA_HouseChamp

Mr Webb - Games Master

Table Talk

In whole school assembly this week, we spoke to the students about kindness and how it takes very little effort to smile, be polite, hold open a door, say good morning etc.

We would love you to have the discussion over the dinner table this week about what acts of kindness you appreciate at home and in society and if there is something big or small you could do to make someone's day.

Mental Health Intent

We are currently working on our Mental Health intent and would be interested to hear any feedback on this. Please see the statement in the attachment below.

Word of the Week

Phys: Nature, body, natural science (Greek word root)

  • Physiology - the branch of biology that deals with the normal functions of living organisms and their parts.
  • Metaphysics - the branch of philosophy that deals with the first principles of things, including abstract concepts such as being, knowing, identity, time, and space.
  • Geophysics - the physics of the earth.

Miss Brealey - Head of English Faculty

Year 11 Focus

A big welcome back to year 11 students, I hope you have all had a restful and enjoyable Christmas break and are well prepared to embark upon a very important term as we move towards the Summer exams.

Touchstone assessments will take place next week, this will help teachers identify improvements and areas for developments since the last round of mocks. We will then be looking towards the full mock exams which take place the week after we return from February half term.

Career's Meetings

All year 11 are benefitting from face to face meetings with a qualified career's advisor, Niki Tolhurst, starting on Monday 10th.

All students have been sent a letter detailing the time and date of their meeting, as well as a link to this Google Form for them to consent or decline to the feedback Niki produces being shared with the academy careers team.

This is an invaluable chance for students to discuss their career hopes and aspirations with someone who has over 30 years experience in Career's advice and support.

Even if a student has made up their mind on their next steps, please encourage your child to fully embrace the opportunity as we have had fantastic feedback from last years students in how it made them consider, and subsequently apply and be successful, in alternatives careers and courses.

Mr Lovatt - Assistant Principal

Teen Support

Please see the link from Young Minds where you will find some fantastic resources.

Times Tables

At the end of all lessons students stand behind their chairs in silence to prepare for themselves for the next lesson. From September, on a weekly rota, Years 7 and 8 will be reciting their timetables to help embed them in their long term memory.

Week commencing 10th January - 9 times table

Accelerated Reader

Week commencing 10th January during period 1

The Sporting Post

Our club timetable has changed. On Monday and Tuesday our students will be taking part in rugby, hockey and dance. On Wednesday and Thursday we have made some changes to the sports clubs we are offering.

On Wednesdays it is table tennis and rowing club. On Thursday it is football and netball. If students attend afterschool football or netball it will increase their chances of being selected to attend the DRET Winter Cup. If they wish to stay on a Wednesday or Thursday students must report to the PE department at 3.15pm and get changed into their kit. They must then be collected by parents/carers at 4.15pm.

Students also have the opportunity to take part in sport at lunchtimes.

Mr Addlesee - Sports Enrichment Officer

Updated Transport Policy

Transport provision for the academic year ahead is finalised in July.

Should a student move house that impacts on the transportation requirements (either to a DRET service from another DRET or LCC service) after the arrangements have been agreed between DRET and the transport providers; then places on a revised service will be subject to availability.

Should places not be available on the preferred service then either parents would make their own arrangements, or an alternative will be offered in the same town where possible, even though this may not offer the most convenient stops for the student.

At present we have a waiting list on one of the AC Williams Grantham services and are having to place students on the other Blands Grantham service

We appreciate this may cause some additional logistical issues for parents, but we cannot accommodate services that are not required at the time of the procurement of transport for the year ahead.

Mr Linforth - Academy Operations Manager

Dates for your diary

Please click on the parent calendar to see the full list of upcoming events and activities at CRA


Created with images by congerdesign - "board slate blackboard" • Wokandapix - "teach education school" • KlausHausmann - "hand disinfection disinfection mouth guard" • ejlindstrom - "coffee school homework" • geralt - "emoji smiley bad mood" • jossuetrejo_oficial - "map topography geography" • PublicDomainPictures - "albert einstein physics relativity" • jarmoluk - "hands friendship friends" • Peggy_Marco - "refugees economic refugees financial equalization" • ringsfoto - "stationery clip cooperation" • geralt - "bulletin board stickies post-it" • anncapictures - "pocket watch time sand" • sakulich - "light lamp warm" • TotalShape - "mental health mental wellness mind" • Wild0ne - "typewriter vintage write" • josephredfield - "people friends together" • geralt - "integration volunteer hands" • geralt - "to learn a notice information sign" • guisdesouza - "rugby ball water" • oli2020 - "school safety signage" • tigerlily713 - "calendar date time"