In Memoriam, Mr Cary Owens

I regret to announce the passing of Mr Cary Owens, following his long battle with illness. During his 33 years of teaching History at Hawthorn, Cary worked tirelessly to support pupils, staff and families in our community.

As a past pupil myself, I recollect many memories of great wars  lifting off the page, as he marched us through the battle; of his cupboard telephone conversations that used to amuse us during lessons, and his kindness in preparing us for examinations.  He was a true legend!

He held many roles within the school, one of which was the gatekeeper of examinations, where he enabled every pupil to achieve, ensuring that we were ready to succeed.  He laid the foundations of success that many of us have built upon.

I know that he will be sorely missed by all of our Hawthorn community having touched so many lives.

Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time.

C Crockett

Headteacher

The world is a much poorer place with the loss of Cary Owens.

I often talk about Cary at parents’ evenings with former pupils he taught and who are now parents. When they speak of him the same words are said time and time again – kind, dedicated, amazing, a true gentleman, their favourite teacher. The word ‘legend’ is often mentioned too and in this case it very much deserves to be used, he was a true Hawthorn legend.

I arrived at Hawthorn in 1995 straight out of teacher training into Cary’s History Department. I am the teacher and Head of Humanities I am today because of him. From the very beginning he guided me with patience, support and understanding. He pushed me out of my comfort zone and showed me what was truly important about our role as teachers. His principles were those of good humour, fairness and absolute dedication to our pupils so that they could be successful. He had a passion for History that he transferred to many of our pupils, encouraging a lifelong interest and enjoyment of the subject. His contribution was not limited to the department either. He coached football teams and joined many residential trips, working hard to educate the whole child and not just the academic side.

Cary made a huge impression on any young teacher who arrived in school. He would lend an ear at any time to someone in need of help and guidance, often giving you just the right piece of advice to build genuine and long-lasting relationships with classes. For over 30 years at Hawthorn he was a trusted colleague who built a solid foundation of mutual trust and respect with both his colleagues and his pupils.

He was a mentor, a cheerleader, and a friend and he will be greatly missed.

Nic Chapman

We’re open for key workers and High Priority learners

The school is open for key workers and High Priority learners, whilst learning from home continues for the majority of our learners.

Eligible children include those:

  • that have additional learning needs;
  • are looked after;
  • are young carers;
  • are in need of care and support; or
  • with child protection needs.

Critical worker provision will be made available for families by appointment:

  • Blue light workers, including NHS, Police, Ambulance and Fire Service staff;
  • Social care workers (including care homes); and
  • Childcare or education staff.

Parents/carers wishing to access our Critical Worker provision

email alison.lambert@hawthornhs.co.uk. Please only apply for this provision if you clearly meet eligibility and are scheduled to work and have exhausted all possible childcare avenues.

As stated in the LA letter, we will be open for school hours between 8.30am and 2.50pm.

All other learning will be on-line via Hwb Google Classrooms.Pupil briefing HWB (Powerpoint)

Currently, all school clubs and our on-site Swimming Pool are shut until further notice.

School Website and Pupil Engagement

I am very pleased to share that our school website is fully functioning and live; an additional avenue for our communications.  All of our home/school correspondence will be available on this platform, as well as our Twitter page and email.

Thank you for the parental responses to our Digital Survey.  Families who require a device for distance learning will be contacted by our pastoral team throughout this week.

Pupil engagement with school and learning remains our priority.  Please could I ask that your child is encouraged to submit work on their google classroom platform.  Lessons are following the normal timetable of three sessions per day, and during this time our teachers are available in the session to provide feedback, answer questions and model responses.  We have adopted a synchronous approach to ensure pupils are supported throughout each session.  If your child is accessing work outside of the session time and requires help, please email the class teacher and/or their progress lead and they will ensure appropriate support is put in place.

A reminder that if you wish to contact the school our telephone number is 01443 841228, our switchboard is available between 8am and 4pm daily (Mon-Fri).

I want to reiterate that we are here to support our families throughout the lockdown period, please get in touch if you need us.

We will continue to work in partnership during these challenging times and remain committed to ensuring the very best for our pupils.

C Crockett

Headteacher

Using Xbox or PlayStation to Access Hwb

One of our learners, William in Birchgrove Comprehensive School in Swansea, has created the following guide for using a games console to access applications and resources on Hwb.

Using Xbox or Play Station to access Hwb

Accessing your remote learning. An alternative method of accessing remote learning during times of lockdown.

Xbox

  1. Plug a keyboard in to the Xbox USB slot
  2. Go in to my games and apps
  3. Find Microsoft Edge and select
  4. Type in: Hwb and log in as you would in school
  5. You can then access your work through Google Classroom or OneDrive and use key packages including:
  • Word
  • Teams
  • Excel
  • PowerPoint
  • Your emails
  1. To move around you use the Xbox controller or plug in a mouse

PlayStation

  1. Identify the PlayStation internet browser icon (it is WWW with dots around it)
  2. Press the PlayStation logo on the controller
  3. Go to the library and find options for games and applications
  4. Go in to applications and you will find the internet browser
  5. Type Hwb into the browser and log in as you would in school
  6. You can then access your work through Google Classroom or OneDrive and use key packages including:
  • Word
  • Teams
  • Excel
  • PowerPoint
  • Your emails

Blended Learning

I understand that this is a difficult time, and that we all want to minimise the impact this period has on your child’s learning.  In light of this, I would like to take the opportunity to thank both you and our pupils for the tremendous effort there has been this week engaging in the online learning we have provided as a school.

In order to continue to maximise this learning from home, please continue to encourage your son/daughter to do the following:

  • Every morning at 8.30am, they need to log onto their year group Google Classroom and follow a link to a Google Form register.
  • They then need to follow their normal school timetable. At the beginning of each of the three lesson sessions, they will again be asked to register (following a link from their classroom teacher). It is important that they do this every day so that we, as a school, know that they are engaging in their online learning. A video explaining how to do this in more detail can be found following this link
  • At the end of every lesson (or when the work has been completed) their work should be uploaded back to their Google Classroom for their teacher to provide feedback to them.
  • All other learning will be on-line via Hwb Google Classrooms

I do understand that individual family circumstances vary, which might mean it is difficult for siblings to all adhere to the same school timetable. If this is the case, and your son/daughter is completing their work outside of their normal timetable, they still need to register at 8.30am and complete their Session 1 register. On this register, they will find an option to tick: I am completing the work after the timetabled session. This will then notify us in school that they are engaging, but at a different time.

If your son/daughter is not engaging in their home learning, or has not registered for their lessons, a member of our Engagement Team will be in contact to offer any support that might be needed. Our Engagement Team are also on hand at the school if you have any questions about the Blended Learning your son/daughter is receiving. Please do not hesitate to call if this is the case.

Once again, thank you for your ongoing support with your child’s online learning.

Kind Regards

Mrs R. Stephens

Assistant Head

New Headteacher Appointment

I am delighted to be appointed as substantive Headteacher of Hawthorn High School. I am incredibly proud to be leading our school and to build on our strong foundations that you, as parents have helped forge over the last 18 months. We are a school that stands proud at the heart of the community and I am excited to lead such a vibrant school.

The last 18 months as acting Headteacher have been insightful, challenging and a rewarding experience, that has developed and shaped our school. Our recent Estyn inspection quantifies the excellent practice that takes place daily across our school and places us in a firm position to make further progress.

Our key development priorities this year:
• Continue to develop skill provision
• Enhance quality teaching
• Enhance our curriculum offer
• Wellbeing: Recover, Refresh, Restart priorities

I bring a unique understanding and perspective to Hawthorn. Having been a past pupil at our school, many years ago…I fully understand our local community needs and how to support our learners, especially through these diverse times. I am thrilled to inspire our pupils to be their very best. I was fortunate to be afforded opportunities throughout my career to headship, but ultimately my values were formed and rooted in the belief Hawthorn teachers had in me during my time at our school. I will ensure that all of our pupils, irrelevant of ability or background have healthy and happy experiences at Hawthorn that leads them on to success in their own futures.

Our dedicated staff team work relentlessly to support our pupils. Our staff have and continue to work tirelessly to ensure quality provision for all learners, and this has been highlighted since the start of the pandemic. The focus for all of our staff centres on pupil development and engagement at all times.

Amongst all the chaos in the world at present, our school remains steadfast and committed to delivering quality education and wellbeing support for all of our families and staff. I am grateful for your responses to our recent parental survey. I believe that the voice of our parent community is important in supporting our drive for excellence. I am confident that together we can ensure the very best for our pupils, your children.

Mrs C Crockett