OBA Weekly Newsletter. Issue 143 - 11th November 2019

Issue 143 - 11th November 2019
Dear families and friends of OBA,

I hope you find the content of these newsletters as uplifting as I do being in the academy and meeting these fantastic students and staff. Every day, there is a real vibe about the place and, as I go about the site I can honestly say that, as well as being a safe, calm and orderly place to learn, it’s actually inspiring. We can, however, never legislate for random acts of individuals but, thankfully, serious incidents at Bolingbroke are extremely rare and they are always dealt with swiftly and in line with what are very robust policies. As a parent myself, I have always prized the safety and wellbeing of staff and students so I wanted to take this opportunity to reassure parents of my own very high standards. Great behaviour at OBA is an expectation, coupled with a passionate desire to achieve the very best. The vast majority of students that I meet are already matching these expectations so, as long as they maintain a positive attitude to learning, I expect that these newsletters will continue to be full of success stories.  

Best wishes,

Mr. Tony Rawdin
Acting Principal

Year 9 World Champion

Sophie B in Year 9 is celebrating being a Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) World Champion!

Proud Head of Year, Mrs Hasty said:

Sophie is very modest and does not like fuss, however, this year alone she has won the following;

Great Britain Grapplers Gold Medal
Great Britain MMA Gold Medal
Welsh Open Silver / Bronze in the Boys division 
European Champ for Brazilian Jujitsu

And over the Summer holidays, Sophie travelled to Rome and became the World Champion MMA for the IMMAF (International Mixed Martial Arts Federation)

Congratulations Sophie, the whole OBA family is very proud of you! 

It’s Cool to be Kind

In the run-up to the half-term break, Year 11 student Abby R made Halloween cupcakes for her peers in 11c. Each member of the form donated some money for their cupcake with the view to the money raised being used to buy something nice for neighbouring hospice Halton Haven.


BTEC Sport Sixth Form students recently visited Liverpool Trampoline Academy to expand their knowledge and skills in trampoline. 

They had two hours of coaching from a qualified coach which Head of PE, Miss Mc Auliffe described as “invaluable”. They also watched the British champions train on the trampoline beside them and met 3x World Gymnast Champion Beth Tweddle. 

Miss Mc Auliffe said:

The students were amazed at the talent of the trampolinists and gave all the skills a good go themselves!

Year 7 Breakfast Treats

Tuesday 22nd October - Reward Breakfast for 7A AND for achieving the highest OBA Way scores across Year 7.

Wednesday 23rd October – Reward Breakfast for 7H JBT for achieving the LOWEST negative scores across the whole academy!

Monday 4th November - Welcome Back Reward Breakfast for students across Year 7 who achieved the top overall points across the first half term.

Year Leader, Miss Cathcart said:

I am so proud of the start that Year 7 have made at OBA, the students have been working so hard to be the best they can be!  The competition for OBA Way points was very tight at the top, but 7A had achieved 16536 overall points at the end of the half-term – well done to Mr Dixon and 7A!  Mr Barrett’s form should also be very proud of their conduct across the academy, as they achieved the fewest negative scores as a form group out of Years 7-11.  This is a tremendous achievement and one that the whole form can be very proud of.  Lastly, it was lovely to celebrate with the highest-achieving students from half term 1 on Monday morning as a special reward and “welcome back” – I wish all the students in Year 7 the very best of luck in their endeavours this term and look forward to celebrating with even more of them at Christmas time!

Year 7 Settling in Event

Thank you to all our Year 7 families who attended the ‘Settling In’ event on Thursday 24th October.

Additional to a more formal Progress Evening scheduled later in the school year, this event was designed to provide an opportunity for parents/carers to touch base with key members of staff at the end of their child’s first term to discuss how they have settled into life at OBA.

The event provided an insight into what our newest students have been studying in their three core subjects; Maths, English and Science. Parents/Carers had the opportunity to view work in children’s exercise books and talk to their class teachers. Form tutors along with Year Leader Mrs Cathcart and KS3 Pastoral Manager, Miss Roberts were also available for families to speak to regarding their transition into the Academy. 

Please note that Year 7 Parents/Carers will be invited to attend a Progress Evening later this academic year where there will the chance to meet with all subject staff. 

Competition Winner Cara Scoops a Signed Copy of Popular Book

OBA student Cara M was recently presented with a signed copy of "The Lost Words" at Didsbury Library in Manchester. The talented Year 7 student who has been described as a “worthy winner” had entered a poetry competition whilst staying at her aunt’s house over the summer holidays. 

The Library was fortunate to have been given a copy of "The Lost Words" book as the prize for this competition by the publishers, that had been signed by both the author, Robert Macfarlane, and the illustrator Jackie Morris. This was part of a ‘My Wild Libraries’ pilot that was running at 3 Manchester branches in partnership with the Wildlife Trust. 

Jane McKelvey, Citywide Services Manager for Manchester City Council, said:

Cara's poem was called "Spring" and was beautifully illustrated as well as well written, and was a worthy winner. She had also made a really lovely lemon drizzle cake for our staff at Didsbury, which was a very thoughtful thing to do, and much appreciated.


Sunshine and showers bring new life and flowers Plants bloom and daffodils appear Rabbits spring from their burrows with joy Insects leap and hp in the grass excited for what life brings Nesting starts and displays of love call a mate new life erupts Growing, greedy chicks demand food, parents busy taking care of their brood

Cara M, aged 11 (7H)

Sports Students visit LJM University

OBA sports students from Year 11 and 12 have had the opportunity this week to take part in a day out at LJMU sports science labs. Students took part in 3 interactive workshops: 

The first session focused on Physiology: Exercise and Health. Students discussed the importance of exercise for health and barriers that lead to an inactive lifestyle. Students took part in high-intensity interval training (HIT) to show how it eliminates the major barrier to exercise which is lack of time. 

The second session related to understanding levels of physical activity within the population. Students took part in various activities wearing heart monitors and pedometers and compared the difference of measuring physical activity accurately. 

Students were asked to wear two common methods of physical activity measurement - pedometers and heart rate monitors - during a circuit of activity stations in order to gain practical experience of issues such as feasibility, validity and reliability.

Finally, the last session focused on Biomechanics. Students had a lecture on the role of muscle strength on sporting performance and wellbeing, followed by handgrip strength measurements in the audience and a demonstration of muscle structure in vivo by ultrasonography.

Head of PE, Miss McAuliffe said:

Students came out of the day with a broader sense of careers around Sports Science and courses they could attend.

CSI Day for Year 5 Forensic Scientists

On Monday 4th November, two Year 5 classes had the exciting chance to become Crime Scene Investigators and Forensic Scientists as part of a hands-on CSI day at Ormiston Bolingbroke Academy.

Pupils from Brookvale and Gorsewood Primary Schools looked at the scientific skills involved in piecing together the necessary evidence and facts in order to solve a crime. This included collecting fingerprints, observing microscope work, fibre analysis and a study of synthetic blood.  

Pupils donned personal protective equipment worn at crime scenes to stop cross-contamination and this included them sporting overalls, shoe covers and masks!

Scientist, Mr Houslay, who led the project day said:

I was really impressed with all the pupil’s meticulous approach and specifically their scientific art of deduction. Students were enthusiastic throughout each activity and really got into the spirit of the day.

#IWill Start Work to Improve Academy Environment

The #iwill project carried out their first event of the school year, where a group of 30-plus students and staff gave up their time after school to litter pick the school yard and surrounding area. Within 30 minutes the team had filled 11 bin bags worth of rubbish, which was predominantly plastic bottles and crisp packets. 

Although this was a great achievement for the team in their bid to improve the school environment it highlighted the continued work required by the team within the school to continue to raise awareness of the litter issue, in order to prevent such quantities of rubbish finding its way onto our school grounds again. 

Geography teacher and #IWill Coordinator for OBA, Miss Doyle said:

The aim of the #iwill team is to be able to expand these litter picks to the wider community and work with our local primary schools to try to improve the environmental quality of our local area.

National Poetry Day Competition Winners

Congratulations to our competition winners who have recently received their prizes following the National Poetry Day poem challenge.

  • Best Overall poem – Isabella C Year 7 – The Truth About Fairy Tales
  • Best Limerick – Rhys T-B Year 10 – Leftover Peach Pie
  • Best use of the topic of Truth – Isabel M & Sofia M Year 7 – The Truth About The Earth
  • Most meaningful poem– Joseph M Year 7 – Black and White, Dark and Light
  • Most emotive poem – Mollie C Year 8 – The Little Leaf

Year 11 Meet their Mentors

The Year 11 Academic Mentoring Support Programme officially launched this week with students having their first introductory mentor meeting whilst enjoying a hot chocolate after school! The aim of the academic mentor is to support and guide students in their preparations and work towards their GCSEs and help them achieve positive Progress 8 scores. The mentor role is an added resource to the pastoral team to give a more rounded support network to each student beyond their studies as we recognise that many factors can create a barrier to students’ academic achievement. Students, during the last half term, gave preference to the Year and senior leadership team as to who they might like as their academic mentor and where possible this has been granted.

Head of Year 11, Miss Dutton said: 

I hope that the Year 11 students find this additional support helpful and beneficial as students in previous years have found.  

The Lovely Bones

On Wednesday 16th October 15 Year 11 drama students were taken to see The Lovely Bones at the Lowry Theatre, Salford Quays. In their final year, it is important that students see as much live theatre as possible in order to meet the requirements of their course. This performance, in particular, was originally written as a novel by Alice Sebold then transformed for the silver screen as a film adaptation and eventually a stage adaptation in 2018. It has since toured all over the country gaining a strong reception from all audiences young and old. 

Miss McKevitt, Drama teacher said: 

All students thoroughly enjoyed the performance and had the opportunity to make notes and comment on the interesting set and staging as well as some hard-hitting themes and issues the play explored.

The Brilliant Club 2019-2020

A select group of pupils recently attended Manchester University for the launch of the Brilliant Club. They were given a tour of the University by student ambassadors who were able to answer any questions from the courses they could study to the societies they could join. They met with their PhD tutor Rob and got started gaining the information they needed to tackle the question “Nuclear Power: Friend or Foe …?”. OBA Pupils will now attend 6 tutorials with Rob to avail of his wealth of knowledge on this subject matter in order to produce a University style dissertation on this very interesting topic. 

What a fantastic opportunity - Good Luck to all involved!

E-Safety Update

YouTube is the largest and most popular video sharing service in the world with over 1 billion users and is owned by Google. It hosts both user-generated and commercial content via its website and mobile apps.

YouTube is hugely popular with people of all ages – one reason for this is the incredible variety of content which can be found there. 

With over 400 hours of content uploaded to YouTube every minute, inevitably some of this content will be inappropriate for younger viewers. Because of the amount of content being uploaded to the site, other filters (including filters through your internet provider) may not function effectively enough for YouTube. In this article we look at the things you can do to help your child stay safe when they’re watching YouTube.

YouTube Community Guidelines

YouTube uses a set of 'common-sense rules’ – their Community Guidelines – to help content creators determine what is and isn’t appropriate to post. The Community Guidelines include guides on nudity or sexual content, hateful content, harmful or dangerous content and violent or graphic content.

What is Restricted Mode?

Restricted Mode is an additional setting which can be enabled on the YouTube website and app. If enabled it restricts the availability of potentially mature or objectionable content.

How does Restricted Mode work?

The primary method for filtering content in Restricted Mode is an automatic system using algorithms. These algorithms, or rules, determine what content might be considered inappropriate by checking different elements such as the title, language and metadata used in each video. Metadata refers to information about the video such as the upload date, creator, video description, and tagged keywords.

YouTube themselves acknowledge that automated systems are never perfect and that their algorithms “sometimes make mistakes when assessing which videos to make available in Restricted Mode.”

How do I use Restricted Mode?

Restricted Mode can be turned on by:

  • Signing into YouTube with an account.
  • Then you need to go to the account icon in the top right corner on the YouTube site or app.
  • Toggling Restricted Mode to the ‘on’ option.

Our Advice

It’s important to remember that no filter is ever 100% effective on its own and any controls should only be used if they work for you and your family. Please contact Mr Hussey at OBA if you have any queries or need support in setting up YouTube restricted mode. 

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