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Alice in Wonderland at St Mary's

On Tuesday 3rd & Wednesday 4th March, St Mary’s students and staff presented an engaging adaptation of the much loved story Alice in Wonderland to audiences of parents, students and classes of children from local primary schools. Written in 1865 by Lewis Carroll, the story is well known and follows the adventures of a curious Alice as she falls down the rabbit hole and finds herself among enchanting characters of all kinds.

AliceGallery ClickHereFollowing the success of last year’s production of Charley and the Chocolate Factory, this year’s show did not disappoint, with much fine acting, singing and dancing throughout the show. Over months of rehearsals Mr Turiansky skilfully directed the production, supported by other staff leading the music and dance. Special thanks must be made to Miss Wheeler and Miss Adams. Behind the scenes thanks also to Mrs Wiseman, Mrs Goodwin, Mr Taylor and the site team for their work on costumes, set design and construction. In addition, thank you to all the additional members of staff who made this production possible.

Warmest congratulations to all the students from Years 7 – 10 who took part in the production. Your talent, hard work and enthusiasm made this show such a memorable success. The main characters parts were outstanding and special mention must be made for Belen who portrayed the main character, Alice.

Alice  Belen
White Rabbit Shauna & Akeelah
Cheshire Cat Ragshidaa, Alicja & Ellie
Mad Hatter Pawel
March Hare Aida
Tweedle Dee Allegra
Tweedle Dum Love
Caterpillar Brandon
King of Hearts  Serena
Queen of Hearts Sascha
Doorknob Ayvea
Principle Royal Cards/Chorus Lacey, Ellie, Sabina & Ellen
Rose Sara
Petunia Thando & Christie
Daisy Princess
Violet  Shakira
Lily Dominika & Favour
Chorus Kaychanel, Sarah & Neveah
Chorus Captain Angel & Paula
Mathilda & A.S.M Dakota
Sea Creature Captain Kara
Dancers & Party Guests Laura, Alicia, Lucy, Grace, Billan-Amina & Jennifer
   
Director Mr M Turiansky
Choreographer Miss M Adams
Conductor Miss J Wheeler
Deputy Stage Manager Conor
Sound Technician Elvis
   

 

 

 

 

Christmas Hamper Collection 2019

During Advent, as our school community prepared to celebrate the birth of Jesus, all tutor groups were encouraged to contribute food, drink and toiletries to the school’s annual Christmas Hamper Collection.

Once again, our students surpassed all expectations with the quantity their donations, which were delivered with great pleasure to two local charity groups for distribution to the those most in need in our community. 

On Wednesday, 18h December, Matthew Turner, our School Chaplain, accompanied a group of Year 10 students to the headquarters of Croydon Commitment's Christmas Appeal with boxes of toiletries for their Hygiene Bank collection, and further boxes of foodstuff was delivered to our local parish's St Vincent de Paul Society (SVP).

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The SVP is a part of an international lay Christian voluntary organisation actively working with the poor, disadvantaged and marginalised. It seeks to respond to the call every Christian receives to bring the love of Christ to those it serves in the spirit of the Gospel message. The SVP at St Mary's Church meets every 2nd and 4th Sunday at 4.00pm-5:30pm in the Parish Prayer Room

This Christmas Croydon Commitment are tackling three key social issues; homelessness, loneliness and isolation, and hygiene poverty, and we are working in partnership with Croydon Neighbourhood Care Association, The Hygiene Bank, Beauty Banks and Crisis. The Hygiene Bank and Beauty Banks to raise awareness for hygiene poverty and source toiletries for those living without access to such products.

Croydon Schools' Badminton Champions

Warmest congratulations to our badminton team who have won the Croydon Sports Partnership KS4 Boys 2019 Badminton Championship held on 28th November at the South Croydon Sports Club.

The tournament included all secondary schools from across Croydon. The St Mary’s team won ten out of their twelve games in the round-robin stage of the tournament, two out of three games in the semi-finals, and then won all three games in the final against the Thomas More School team.

Congratulations to our boys: Jamal, Qasim, Syed and Hitarth.

Miss Adams reports: “The boys played amazingly well, displaying great skill and determination. It was so lovely seeing them working together and as a result were really proud of themselves! Each boy represented St Mary’s with pride and are great ambassadors for our school.”

It was a great year for Catholic schools in the tournament with St Mary’s winning the Boys’ Competition, and Thomas More as runners-up. Coloma Convent School were the winners of the Girls’ tournament.

New Views Theatre Course at St Mary's

On the 6th November selected Year 9 & 10 students were visited by the actor and playwright Yolande Mercy, who delivered a two-hour session on playwriting on behalf of the National Theatre’s ‘NEW VIEWS’ playwriting course.

By the Spring all will have written a 30-minute play, on a subject of their choice, to be entered into a competition where the best judged play will be performed by professionals at the National Theatre.

As part of the programme, a visit was arranged to see ‘Master Harold and the Boys’ on the Lyttleton stage at the National, in order to see how top playwriting and acting could influence pupils’ own efforts.

Through participating in the New Views programme our students will have the unique and exciting opportunity to:

  • Explore their talent and sharpen their approach to research, as well as their ability to develop and articulate ideas on key ethical questions and dilemmas.
  • Develop a sense of connection to the arts, a lifelong enthusiasm for theatre and an understanding of the power of theatre to engage audiences in serious debate.

SPEAKOUT! Challenge

On the 14th November, St Mary’s were host to Elaine Powell of the Speakers’ Trust for a day-long session on public speaking techniques as part of the Jack Petchey SPEAKOUT! Challenge, involving 25 year 10 pupils, who, by the end of the day, delivered a two-minute speech on a topic of their choice.

The key determinants for success were structure, enthusiasm and a strong call to action at the end. ‘All participants acquitted themselves really well’, reported Mr Turiansky, ‘and the less confident in the group surprised themselves and their peers with the fluency of their delivery.

’ Six shortlisted candidates will present their speeches in year 10 assemblies in the new year, with the highest-scoring individual representing St. Mary’s in the Croydon regional final around Easter.

The SPEAKOUT! Challenge is a programme managed and delivered by Speakers Trust, the UK’s leading public speaking organisation and is supported and funded by the Jack Petchey Foundation. The challenge gives free communication skills training to Year 10 students in every state school in London and Essex, empowering over 20,000 young people each year.

Runners-up in the London Mock Bar Competition

On Saturday 16th November, a team from St Mary’s took part in the Mock Bar Competition. The competition took place In the courtrooms of the Inner London Courts in Borough, where the pupils successfully prosecuted and defended their cases against teams from other schools.

A variety of roles were undertaken, including: barrister, clerk, usher, witness and juror. The pupils had been training for several months during lunchtime breaks and after school, with the expert help of a real barrister. Each case was tired in front of a real judge and the score based on the successful completion of the different roles.

The Mock Bar competition is for pupils from Year 10 through to Year 13. With a team drawn entirely from Year 10, our pupils knew it would be tough: ten teams competed in the London heat, each completing three separate trials. A final between the two most successful teams was the reward for a long Saturday of exciting work. The final was close and our pupils should be proud at how well they performed.

This is the first time the school has taken part in the Mock Bar competition. To come second in the heat was both unexpected and well-earned.

Well done to: Jaanai, Blessing, Dakota, Angel, Sofia, Brandon, Chelsy, Ashley, Gabriella, Janeca, Nada, Sascha, and Rosheda.

Netball Fixtures Return!

We are delighted that St Mary’s Catholic High School has re-established netball fixtures against other schools after a gap of twenty-five years. The school previously enjoyed a strong reputation for sporting fixtures across a wide range of sports for both boys and girls, so it is to the credit of staff and students that our school is able to offer these invaluable healthy lifestyle opportunities once again. You will recall that last year saw the introduction of rugby as a sport at our school. 

Our girls’ PE teacher, Ms Adams, reports: “It is wonderful to see so many girls turn up for netball training after school each week. Many were active netballers at primary school and are keen to continue the sport throughout their time at secondary school. While they are continuing to develop their skills, their enthusiasm for the game is terrific. They are keen to represent our school in the range of fixtures we have now established.”

While our first fixtures for Years 7 & 8 against Harris Purley ended in close defeats, it will not be long before they are catching up to the standard of other teams. It was a wonderful experience for the girls who deserve great credit for their hard work and commitment.

Macmillan Coffee Morning Success

St Mary’s Macmillan Coffee Morning, held on Friday 18th October, was a huge success, raising a grand total of £606. In preparation for the morning, students and staff brought in home-made and shop-bought cakes and biscuits for sale in the school’s court yard at break time. With so many donations received it was decided to continue the sale throughout lunchtime as well.

Each of our five school houses tried their best to raise the most money for Macmillan Cancer Support, and as a result were eager to sell the most cakes by creating wonderful signs tempting customers to their individual stalls in the courtyard.

The houses raised the following amounts:

  • St Bernadette £81.36
  • St John Bosco £ 36.77
  • St Thomas More £72.10
  • St Peter £54.76
  • St Theresa £122.32

The remainder of the amount raised came from the parents’ coffee morning and staff coffee afternoon events.

We were delighted that Ben from the Macmillan’s Coffee Morning Team acknowledged our school’s efforts in a tweet: “Please thank all those involved for their support! It means a lot. All the best - Ben - Worlds Biggest Coffee Morning Team.”

Year 11 Art students visit Banksy's pop-up shop in Croydon

Year 11 Art students, along with our Head of Art, Mrs Goodwin, visited Banksy’s pop-up shop in Croydon town centre. The exhibition, called Gross Domestic Product, opened in a vacant unit on the corner of Church Street and Frith Road early on Tuesday 1st October.

The shop featured the Union Jack stab vest worn by Stormzy at Glastonbury Festival earlier this year, as well as a Tony the Tiger rug and a cradle surrounded by CCTV cameras.

Banksy’s installation encouraged students to consider how to make their own GCSE artwork more imaginative and challenging. His collection of thought-provoking artworks is usually the centre of attention, so this was an opportunity not to be missed for our students. It's not often a famous artist opens a shop, without any prior announcement, on our doorstep in Croydon!

STEM Success for Year 9 Students

Year 9 students have taken part in the South West London Science & Technology Challenge Day at St Mary’s University, Twickenham. The event aimed to open their eyes to the vast array of STEM careers available. The students, split into pairs, had to work alongside pupils from another schools, to complete four challenges across the action-packed day.

The Robotics Challenge involved programming a Lego Mindstorm EV3 robot to navigate its way around the lab course. For the Medical Diagnostics Challenge students had to analyse patients’ symptoms, test and scan report to accurately diagnose them. Students also designed and built a battery powered vehicle as well as completing an E-Fit challenge using facial recognition software to create a computer image of a ‘suspect’. The students had a fabulous day developing their communication skills and challenging themselves to apply their in-school learning to real life, career tasks. All students worked exceptionally hard, with Kadir and Rafaela coming overall first and winning a place in the regional finals! We would also like thank St Mary’s University for making our students welcome throughout the day’s events.

Celebrating a fantastic set of GCSE results

St Mary’s Catholic High School is celebrating a fantastic set of results. They show very pleasing progress across a wide range of subjects, with the number of students achieving Grade 6 (B) and above improving significantly this year.

We are especially delighted for the students who achieved their target grades, allowing them to progress to Post-16 education with confidence in what they have achieved. These results will be a springboard for even greater achievement for these students and for our whole school community. We are proud of each and every one of them.

SMHS GCSE Aug2019 v2bWhile congratulating the students it is also appropriate to say well done to their parents and families for their support during these key years of their children's education. Particular thanks also to all our staff, both past and present, for all their hard work with this year group.

As Ofsted identified when they last inspected our school: ‘Pupils feel motivated by the teaching. Staff often go the extra mile to show that they really value the pupils and that they truly seek to understand their needs and personalities, well beyond a set of data. This is a great gift to the pupils, who recognise and appreciate it.’

 

A more detailed analysis of our 2019 GCSE results will appear in due course.

St Mary's supports The Catholic Children's Society

St Mary’s Catholic High School is delighted to support the work of The Catholic Children’s Society with a donation of £250. All the money raised by students and staff has gone into the Southwark Diocese Crisis Fund, a fund which provides immediate emergency support for local families facing a crisis in their lives.

Founded in 1859 the Catholic Children’s Society is one of the oldest charities supporting disadvantaged children and families in the UK. Its mission is to bring hope and change to children and families living in poverty, as well as those experiencing emotional and psychological distress.  It seeks to address material, relational and spiritual poverty.  Through its services they help children overcome disadvantage, achieve their full potential and have better chances in life.

The Catholic Children’s Society work with people of all faiths and none, drawing inspiration from Christian values derived from the Gospels and the teaching of the Catholic Church.

To find out more about The Catholic Children’s Society CLICK HERE

Rebecca visits 10 Downing Street

Year 10 student Rebecca had an experience to remember on Monday, 15th July when, as a representative of the Palace for Life Foundation and PL Kicks, she was invited to 10 Downing Street for an official reception. She met with the then Prime Minister Theresa May, who was very interested in finding out about the Palace for Life Foundation and PL Kicks as well as the other youth groups represented at the meeting.

Just before the meeting the representatives of Palace for Life and other clubs, including Manchester City and Aston Villa, had an impromptu kick-about outside No10 – possibly the first time this has ever happened in such famous surroundings! Rebecca has recently signed for Sutton Utd FC.

For more information about Palace for Life Foundation CLICK HERE

The Foundation’s website reports:

The reception followed the Government’s recently formed Ministerial Taskforce on Serious Violence and recognised role models, volunteers and frontline workers across the country dedicating their lives to reducing youth violence.

Mark Bright, Under-23 Director at Palace, said: “I was honoured to represent Palace at Downing Street and to help shine a light on the positive work being done by the Premier League and our Foundation to create safer communities for young people through sport.”

PL Kicks regularly engages children and young people of all backgrounds and abilities, in football, sport and personal development – providing a trusted, positive influence in high-need areas across England and Wales.

Malachi and Daniel, both 11, and Rebecca, 15 were selected to attend Downing Street thanks to their hard work and dedication at sessions this year, with Rebecca having recently signed for Sutton United FC.

George Henry, who also attended PL Kicks football sessions when he was younger, said: “PL Kicks is an excellent community initiative that provides access to free sport and social activities in areas where there isn’t always much for young people to do.

“I was really pleased we were able to bring Malachi, Daniel and Rebecca, it was amazing to see them playing football on Downing Street and enjoying the experience!”

The group joined representatives from Manchester City and Aston Villa to take part in a kick about before meeting the Prime Minister, Theresa May, to talk about PL Kicks and Palace for Life.

St Mary's Prize-Giving 2019

On Thursday, 16th July the school community celebrated the achievements of our students at our annual prize-giving evening. For each curriculum area teaching staff nominated one student in each year group to be rewarded for their hard work and achievement. 

This year’s prize winners are a true representation of everything that we stand for here at St Mary’s Catholic High School – these hard working, committed students are a credit to the school and their families. It is through such achievements that we are clearly able to see the skill, high expectation and commitment of the staff and students at St Mary’s and these prize winners are great examples of what we hope for from our students.

In addition to the subject awards, special pastoral awards were made for a student from each form group. These awards were given for outstanding engagement, exemplary behaviour and positive contribution to Form, Year Group and Whole School.

Congratulations to all the prize winners:

  Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10
Religious Studies Patricia R D’A Ethan S Kingsley A Verdia A
English Jakub L Barira Z Ana R Maria-Lavinia F
Mathematics Vanessa F Rosa F F Rafaella B T Jeymibel R
Science Daniel M Muvah B Ragshidaa K Ilirjan K
Art & Design Jade D Richard R O J’Adore A Yilei D
Drama Allegra A Belen V-F Elvis Z Breea A
French Skye A Jennifer T Tyler N Andreea L
Geography Freddy D R Zoro G Neekaiya M  
History Christie K-M Luis R C Sabaoen S Amber C
IT Ioana S Oreoluwa A Rares B Kiara M
Music Love N-P Hania S Leon H Aiesha A
PE David O Tyler S-P Janeca W Emmanuel O
Spanish Cara Q Hisham R Conor L-D Meggy  T
Business Studies       Ronaldo B
Citizenship       Lais F
Enterprise       Imran T
EAL Gabriela M Mariam T Jamal K Mehari T
Library Award Hope A Mihai D A Alvin M Ebvia A

 

Pastoral Awards

Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10
7B  Emmanuel A 8B  Kadijatu B 9B  Jaanai R-H 10B  Chantelle G
7P  Jade D 8J  Barira Z 9J  Pawel L 10J  Anpu D
7T  Sara N 8P  Belen V-F 9P  Neekaiya M 10P  Bryanna C
  8T  Zara M 9T  Syed A 10T  Maria C

 

 

Years 9 & 10 Rewards Visit to the South Bank

As a reward for Year 9 & 10 students who recorded achievement points for behaviour, attendance and hard work a special trip was arranged for them to visit London’s South Bank in the last week of this busy term. For some students, despite living relatively close, it was their first visit to this part of our capital city.

London’s South Bank is a hub of cultural activity. A two-mile procession of diverting arts and entertainment venues and events, popular with Londoners as well as the millions of travellers who visit every year. The area’s modern-day life began in 1951 with the Festival of Britain. 

Students took in The Royal Festival Hall, which has now expanded into the Southbank Centre, the concrete ziggurat of the National Theatre, the London Eye, HMS Belfast, the Tate Modern, Millennium Bridge and more. Students and staff then crossed the river to visit St Paul’s Cathedral.

As well as being a great place to soak up some London culture, the South Bank was just perfect for our students to wander along the River Thames and drink in the view of the city skyline -a reward for a year of hard work and achievement.

International Showcase at St Mary's

St Mary’s students, parents and staff celebrated the rich diversity of our school with a special International Showcase and Talent Evening on Thursday, 11th July. The school community has students and staff from well over sixty different countries across the world, each one adding to our special ethos, showing that we are a truly universal community.

Taking advantage of the recent warm evenings, the showcase was held on the upper playground, adjacent to the school hall. The main feature of the International Showcase was a catwalk display of wonderfully coloured international costumes, with both students and staff proudly showing off their own special heritage. In addition to the fashions, our community shared the tastiest dishes from across the world, all of which were prepared with great skill by students, parents and staff.

SMHS IE July2019 3bThe entertainment for the evening was provided by a students’ talent show with some excellent performances, many in various languages, accompanying the fashion and food. This was another wonderful opportunity to show off our students’ God-given talents.

Well done to the following students who participated in the Fashion and Talent Show:

Year 7

Portia, Cassidy, Sara, Allegra, Jade, Favour, Nery, Princess, Zana-Lee, Thando, Sean, Kyrece, Marieclaire, Akeelah, Vanessa, Prince, Emmanuel, Malachi, Nicole, Shakira, Christie, Dominika, Cara and Rebecca.

Year 8

Belen and Brandon.

Year 9

Ikimot, Luc, Princess, Paula, Blessing, Zef, Nada, Angel, Mario, Rodrigo, Jemma, Ana, Leon, Sofia, Neekaiya and Cole.

Year 10

Feranmi, Aphinayaa, Dilkushan, Chantelle, Hannah, Roshini, Anika, Bryana, Hitarth, Hamel, Dylan and Michael.

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