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«Oaks Park High School At the time of writing we are just about to take possession of our new accommodation, the Craig Foster Building - named in ...»

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Oaks Park High School

At the time of writing we are just about to take possession of our new

accommodation, the Craig Foster Building - named in memory of Mr Foster, a

long-serving member of staff who sadly passed away in August 2014. The

building has some excellent facilities which will benefit our students for years to

come; providing us with the additional accommodation required to expand to 10

forms of entry and offering much needed facilities for our ever-expanding Sixth

Form. In addition, we will also enjoy a new 4G artificial pitch which will considerably enhance our sports facilities.

As usual it has been a very long term; a term in which we have had to work with a large part of the site effectively sealed off while the building works take place.

Generally students and staff have coped very well. In September we took 300 students for the first time and our Sixth Form numbers reached 400.

Following the dreadful events in Paris I am pleased to say that at Oaks Park we continue to work as a closely knit community. This is really important to us all and a great strength of the school is the quality of relationships between students and staff. I hope that we are teaching students to be tolerant of each other and respect views which may be different to their own.

May I take this opportunity to wish you all a restful break and enjoy any celebrations you may have.

I look forward to seeing everyone back and refreshed in 2016.

S J Wilks Headteacher D&T Fashion Show Year 11 Prom - July 2015 Year 13 Prom - July 2015 Redbridge / Melilla Evaluation & Sustainability Conference - July 15 The final stage of our Comenius Regio Project with Melilla, a Spanish town on the north coast of Africa, was an enlightening and productive conference which showcased our work to the Mayor of Redbridge, our staff and students and guests from other schools.

The aim of the project has been to build the entrepreneurial skills of students in both Redbridge and Melilla. Presenting their work at the conference were Oaks Park, Christchurch Primary and Redbridge College. We were also pleased to welcome Loxford School, with whom Oaks Park is involved in the Global Learning Partnership.

Following an introduction by the Mayor of Redbridge and a video welcome by the Deputy Mayor of London, staff and students presented their work. Year 10 students demonstrated their apps, which were designed during GCSE ICT lessons; our Travel Green Team showcased their Travel Green toolkit; Redbridge College talked about how we hope to further develop our Spanish links through student exchange work placements; D&T Construction presented a wooden toy train to the Mayor and Christchurch Primary displayed their excellent work on enterprise and aspirations, culminating in a heart-warming video advert. Their work also included bilingual stories and recipes developed with their partner school in Melilla. Careers fairs, business events, work experience, charity fundraising and Spanish video lessons were also key features. Mr Wilks summed up the work and highlighted future developments.

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Essex Schools Athletics Championships – June 2015 On Saturday 13th June, 4 students from Oaks Park represented Redbridge in the Essex Schools Athletics Championships at Melbourne Athletics Stadium in Chelmsford.

Year 7 representative Lomar Dewar competed in Javelin; Year 9s Antonette Bowen and Tyrell Holder represented the Junior Girls and Boys in Discus and Year 11 Shayne Dewar competed in the Boys 200m Intermediate.

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This year Oaks Park received a Jack Petchey grant to purchase two outdoor table tennis tables. We were also fortunate enough to receive a small grant of £750 which went towards the Oaks Park Boxing Club.

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James with Mr Wyre Mathumy with Ms Richardson Mia with Mr Dutch Deputy Mayor and Headteacher from Jiujiang visit Oaks Park Jiujiang is a beautiful area in eastern China on the Yangtze River, west of Shanghai. Oaks Park started links with Jiujiang in 2010 when Mr Thomas Chan, then Mayor of Redbridge, organised a video conference between students at Oaks Park and Jiujiang Foreign Language High School. We also set up some penpal links between their students and ours.

On Monday 14th September a delegation from Jiujiang came to Oaks Park as part of their UK visit. They were very keen to see us following our previous links. The group included Mr Li, Vice Mayor of Jiujiang;

Ms Zhou, Principal of Jiujiang Foreign Language High School and Mr Thomas Chan. They were met by Headteacher Mr Wilks, the Deputy Head Boy and Girl and some of our students who will be visiting China in October.

The delegation thoroughly enjoyed their tour of the school, which included the Maths, Art and Technology areas. We then met to discuss ways of developing further cooperation and signed a letter of intent promoting links between the two schools. This will provide more opportunities for students from both schools to develop an understanding of each other’s culture.

We also presented the delegation with some of the wooden toy trains made by BTEC Construction students in Year 10 with Mr Oliver.

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At the Tower of London, we examined various different punishments used throughout its history - and also saw the Crown Jewels!

The second part of the trip took us to the London Dungeons, where students experienced 1000 years of London's darkest and most gory history. Walking through the Dungeons and seeing some of the torture chambers and the beheading of Guy Fawkes and the gunpowder plotters was a little too scary for some of the students; however others were most definitely thrilled with the amount of blood and guts!

Well done to all the Year 10 students who took part in this trip. It was a great success and our students represented the school well.

Ms Caluda Head of Year 12 Oaks Park Geography Society Cinema Trip The Oaks Park Geography Society recently took a trip to Romford cinema to see the film Everest. After a quick bite to eat at McDonalds - followed by another stop for snacks at the cinema kiosk - the students were ready to conquer Everest and took their seats in anticipation.

The film is based on a true story, looking at the mountaineering disaster that struck Everest in 1996 when a number of climbers unfortunately lost their lives. The film was exciting, tense and in the end very sad.

Unfortunately there was no Hollywood ending as it was based on a true story;

however it gave our students an excellent idea of what glacial regions are like (something they have been looking at in Geography Society) and the ability to see the challenging conditions faced by the climbers.

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Geography Society is held on Wednesday lunchtimes at 1.30pm in D6 - all students welcome Budding Brunels: An opportunity to gain an insight into the Construction Industry and construction projects being undertaken in East London (organised by The Construction Youth Trust and Laing O’Rourke).

The Budding Brunels three-day project took place from 21st - 23rd September and our Year 12 students day were very excited and full of enthusiasm for all of the tasks that had been planned for them (we spent almost all the lesson discussing what had been done and what insights had been gained from their time!)

The day by day highlights were:

Monday: Q&A sessions with different members of the team and a site visit. Insight into careers/day to day tasks that need to be completed/interaction with colleagues.

–  –  –

Wednesday: Masterplan completion and presentation planning.

The booklets were of great use. The presentation itself was very popular and the feedback from Kieran Lock from the Construction Youth Trust backed up the students’ learning and fulfilment.

Aside from the activities mentioned above, our students really understood so much more about the roles and responsibilities within the network of different careers and the interaction of team members on any construction project.

I look forward to hearing about any similar opportunities can be arranged to further enhance the bout enthusiasm and learning of the students.

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This opportunity also helped us overcome our own fears about giving presentations and attending interviews. The structure of each day’s events gave us more experience than we thought possible. We learned how to improve our teamwork skills; share ideas and focus on listening to other people. We also discovered how to create unique ideas for projects within the constraints explained to us.

We now have an understanding of how the construction industries work, along with an overview of the careers w involved within the different areas. Many of the careers that were explained to us, and that we needed to explore, have given us clear ideas on which opopportunities we should pursue in the future.

–  –  –

A highlight of this trip was the guided tour at the Gestapo Prison where Prison, students were able to go into the cells to examine the impact of Nazi terror.

Camp Vught revealed the horror of the Holocaust and the stories about the treatment of women and children shocked both students and teachers.

The visit to the Olympic Museum was very interactive and students were incredibly excited when we took a tour around the Lindt chocolate factory!

Students enjoyed their evening activities, including an Italian buffet, bowling and a traditional meal in a German restaurant.

The trip was a great success and the students were a credit to Oaks Park because of their focus, hard work and positive attitude.

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Emre and Elise were excellent team leaders and Elise’s team managed to claim victory by one point.

Mr McDonnell and I were both very impressed with the calibre of answers our students gave during the workshop - well done!

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In preparation for the trip to Switzerland in February 2016, 45 of our students recently spent 3 evenings at Brentwood Dry Ski Slopes. 9 students had already had skiing lessons and were able to improve their skills by free skiing; however 36 of the students were new to the sport and had 6 hours of lessons. By the end of these all the students had improved considerably and were looking forward to trying out their new skills on the snow in Switzerland!

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Bangladesh visitors come to Redbridge Recently teachers from three schools in Pabna, a rural north-western district in Bangladesh, enjoyed 7 days in Ilford. They visited Oaks Park, Mayfield School and Fullwood Primary. During the visit the teachers met senior staff, observed lessons and had discussions on a range of topics with students and staff. Fullwood also gave a special assembly held in their honour and there were cultural visits organised by Oaks Park. We also exchanged story books and pictures which the students in both countries created about their own experiences and culture.

Everyone had a great time and it was a really valuable experience. One member of staff said “It’s a fantastic way to share teaching techniques across cultures”. The visitors were very impressed with our students and the hospitality they received.

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They took turns at guiding the group around this big city and loved every minute of haggling in markets to obtain the cheapest price possible for their gifts and souvenirs.

In school we saw students who were passionate about learning and viewed it as a privilege rather than a chore. All students had a ‘can do’ attitude, which had helped most of them rise above any adversity they had faced.

Our students were overawed by the friendliness and openness of the Chinese students and the way they were accepted into their community. They were also shocked to hear of the pressures that students their age faced - and relieved that they were not experiencing the same demands. They discovered that Chinese students their age attended school for 10 hours every day and also received homework every day for every subject, often staying up until to 10’o’clock to complete it! When asked what they did with their spare time, the Chinese students responded ‘what spare time?!’ This trip opened our students’ eyes to the truth about people and education across the globe.

R Jutley nd 2 i/c Maths Department After three years of commitment to the school’s Maths Club, I was given the opportunity to travel to the opposite side of the world and visit China, where I explored the lives of Chinese students and experienced, for the first time in my life, the bewitching historical landmarks such as the Great Wall, the Temple Of Heaven and even the Forbidden City.

The trip was mind-boggling as I expanded my understanding of Chinese culture whilst also developing a deeper understanding of the range at which our mindsets differentiate from those of students in China.

Their entire youth is based around education, with the drive and determination to better themselves.

This in turn creates an efficient working environment and leads to them being drastically further advanced than us in subjects such as Maths and Science. In China, 40minutes spent in the class equals precisely 40minutes of learning.

The Chinese culture is equally astonishing. They base their lives and views around superstition, with heavy faith in luck and hope. Power is represented in specific ways - for example, the colour gold is forbidden in clothing because it portrays the Emperor’s power. These things blew my mind as a British citizen, yet in China it is seen as normal. A repeated phrase our group mentioned throughout the whole trip was "Could you even imagine that in England? There would be utter chaos!" Luke Dodd 12L A Lifetime Trip to China It gives me immense pleasure to share the unique experiences of my trip to China, which will stay in my memory for many years to come. I was accompanied by two teachers and four students and we all experienced Chinese culture in many ways, such as a vast variety of foods, haggling in markets for the best prices and various forms of Chinese music.

During my stay I explored many historic sites in Beijing, including the Great Wall of China;

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