OBA Weekly Newsletter. Issue 103 - 9th May 2017

Issue 103 - 9th May 2017
Dear families and friends of OBA,

I hope by now you have all received the letter informing you that I am retiring at the end of this school year, after 35 wonderful years in teaching.

The highlight of my time in education has undoubtedly been as Principal of OBA and I have felt honoured to serve this community as Principal since my appointment in April 2010. 

The governors appointed my successor, Mr Wright, who was Deputy Head at Weatherhead High School on the Wirral then Headteacher at a school in Belfast.  Mr Wright is from Liverpool and spent part of his childhood in Runcorn.

We have recently held our fantastic Dance Show, produced by Mrs Barker and it was, yet again, a huge success.  Well done to all those that took part and helped out. You can read more about this in next week’s edition of the OBA Newsletter.

I am delighted to say that OBA has been chosen to host the Radio 4 show ‘Any Questions?’ on the evening of Friday 2nd June.  This will be the week before the General Election and so we are hoping for some high profile panellists.  There are approximately 60 tickets available on a first-come-first-served basis, so please contact Mrs Collier ( should you wish to attend this prestigious event.

Tuesday 2nd May saw the launch of our new canteen ‘Bolingbroke Bistro with different menus.  We are now directly employing our catering staff, who were previously employed by Halton, to further improve the quality of service offered to our school community.

Mr. J Rigby
Executive Principal

Bolingbroke Bistro Launch

OBA held an exciting re-launch of the food offer on in the Canteen on Tuesday 2nd May.  The Canteen has been re-named Bolingbroke Bistro.

The brilliant catering team that we have always had are now employed by Ormiston Bolingbroke Academy, so as well as keeping familiar favourite dishes (lasagne, roast dinner etc.) we have also introduced some new and exciting dishes which offer even more choice and an even wider range of healthy food. 

There was a special launch menu for the launch, and we are now following a three week menu cycle. All menus are available on the Academy website –

We have introduced a new range called ‘tub be good to me’, a healthy and tasty fast-food service. This will sit alongside the more traditional dishes that have been served in the past. Other changes include an improved vegetarian offer, more fish dishes, such as salmon tagliatelle and Harry Ramsden’s fish, as well as regular hot puddings, including fruit crumbles. There is also an improved breakfast menu with porridge, fresh fruit and home-made yoghurts on offer.

Members of The Student Parliament have been involved and have had regular meetings with the Head of Catering and they were also helping with the launch by handing out new menus and directing other students and staff to the counter serving the food of their choice.

Executive Principal, Mr Rigby, said:

This re-launch will offer our students and staff so much more choice and we are all very excited to see an even greater range of food options on offer.  The Catering Team is very keen to be involved in this and will also be wearing new uniforms from now on.  We will also be able to offer some of our students who are following a Catering qualification the opportunity to do some work experience in Bolingbroke Bistro, which will be great for them to see how a school canteen operates behind the scenes.

OBA to host BBC’s ‘Any Questions’

Ormiston Bolingbroke Academy is pleased to be hosting BBC Radio 4’s Any Questions? on Friday 2nd June 2017 from 6.45 – 8.50pm. Admission is free and a limited number of tickets are available to the general public.

This broadcast, which is BBC Radio 4’s equivalent of the well-known, and long-running television programme ‘Question Time’ is a topical debate, chaired by Jonathan Dimbleby, in which guests from the world of politics, business, science, the arts and the media answer questions from members of the public on topical issues.

When The Prime Minister, Theresa May, unexpectedly announced that a General Election will be held on June 8th 2017, there was a sudden realisation that the Any Questions program to be hosted by OBA, will be one of the last opportunities to interview the major politicians before the public vote is cast. 

The show will go out live at 8pm on BBC Radio 4 and worldwide via digital broadcasts. A recorded version will also be broadcast on Saturday 3rd June at 1pm, to be followed by its sister programme ‘Any Answers’.

The names of who will be on the panel have not yet been released, but the possibility of seeing some of the leading politicians involved in a debate in OBA, just a few days before a General Election, is a hugely exciting prospect.

As the excitement mounts, we have already had a BBC engineer conduct a site visit and he was very pleased with the venue and facilities that OBA is able to offer. The event will be an opportunity to showcase the academy and a good deal of preparation will be taking place over the next few weeks to comply with Radio 4’s requirements and to arrange for the distribution of all the available 210 tickets.

If you would like to attend and have the opportunity to ask a question on the live broadcast, please contact Mrs Ann Collier, at the Academy, at Tickets will be allocated on a first come, first served basis and the minimum age of the audience is 14. If you are allocated a ticket and are then unable to use it, please return your unused ticket to Mrs Collier.

Bronte Classic Impresses Students

OBA’s A Level and BTEC students went to see the National Theatre during the Easter holidays to enjoy a production of 'Jane Eyre' at the Lowry Theatre.

The play is a modern day version encompassing a multi-functional set and physical elements to convey Jane's struggles and strength throughout her life.

This Charlotte Bronte classic is retold in a way that allows the audience to see Jane in a new light. It was an absolutely fantastic performance and the students are now busy writing up their analysis of this wonderful performance.

Brother and Sister Sporting Successes

The hard work and training of a brother and sister from OBA is really paying off as both students are achieving great sporting success.

Congratulations to Year 8 student, Jadon Allen, who recently represented Cheshire in the Under 13 North West Sports Hall Athletics Final. Jadon’s team came 1st and as a result will now compete in the national finals at Sport City in Manchester.

Congratulations also go to Jadon’s sister, Year 10 student, Charlotte Allen, who took part recently in the National Junior Sculling Championships, representing Runcorn Rowing Club in the J17 squad.  The event took place at Dorney Lake which is nestled amongst scenic parkland, just outside Windsor; it is a world class sporting and events venue with an inspiring Olympic Heritage.  The 3k course was covered in an impressive 14:48 minutes and Charlotte rowed brilliantly.

Well done to both Jadon and Charlotte and we look forward to letting you know more about their sporting successes in the future.

Year 13 Geography Fieldtrip

Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

On the 24th April, Year 13 Geography student Zoë Thornhill travelled to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London, with Mr Butcher, to conduct her primary data in preparation for her independent investigation on which she will be examined in the summer.

Zoë’s aim was to see how the regeneration project had improved the local area since the successful Olympic bid in 2005. In particular, Zoë questioned people on their perception of the area and researched crime rates, as well as environmental quality surveys. Whilst walking to a number of iconic venues, including the Olympic Stadium, the Aquatics Centre and the Velodrome, Zoë was able to gather a mass of data as well as clocking up an impressive 14km! 

This is the final step in Zoë’s Geography journey at OBA before she takes up a place at Liverpool University to study Geography, with the aim of becoming a Geography teacher in the near future. The whole Geography team wish Zoë the best of luck in her upcoming exams!

Years 7 and 10 Running Wild!

On Wednesday 19th April Year 7 and 10 students went to the Lowry Theatre to see a production of 'Running Wild' by Michael Morpurgo which was produced by the makers of the famous play ‘Warhorse’.

According to The Telegraph, "The puppetry is exquisite, with full-sized animals manipulated so they seem to breathe with documentary life." 

This visual spectacular was outstanding to watch as it featured a range of puppetry, moving set and creative lighting and sound.  This transported the audience into the jungle in Indonesia in December 2004 at the time of the Tsunami hitting South East Asia.

Mrs Noon, who accompanied the students, said:

The plot told the story of a girl separated by death from her parents and her unlikely friendship with a wild elephant who saves her life. It is a real ‘must see’ for families in particular. The students loved the performance and their behaviour was a credit to the school.

Inspirational Business Advice

Julie Kennealy, Executive Director of the Sutton Housing Partnership, visited OBA recently to address Year 12 and 13 BTEC Business students.  Julie is a Chartered Accountant who specialises in applying commercial skills in non-profit, social settings to help secure long-term, financial sustainability for organisations. She has over 25 years of experience at the most senior levels in large organisations, both public and private, and in not for profit settings in housing, regeneration and added social value industries.

Julie visited OBA to describe her journey from a humble background growing up in Liverpool, to her current position as an Executive Director. Inspiring students with her story of how, as an unemployed young mother, she turned her sense of injustice on her lot in life into ambition and drive.  She returned to education, produced a set of goals of what she wanted in life namely to buy her own house, to own a car and to be able to go on a holiday – and then she just went for it!

Students were inspired as Julie described how, through hard work and determination, she was able to return to education and secure a qualification that allowed her to get a job, with a relocation allowance allowing her to move to London as a training officer. 

Julie went on to say that she soon aspired to rise up the ranks of management. She described to students how she looked at those in higher positions and planned what she had to do to achieve a similar position. She then undertook the necessary qualification and rose up the ladder of success, inspiring her employers to pay for some of her education along the way, to promote the role of women in business.

Julie also described how she had overcome personal adversity on the death of her daughter and twenty years later on the death of her son in a car crash.  However, she spoke about how she never gave up but rather used the anger she felt inside to drive her forward to be even more successful.

Julie outlined to students some of the amazing places her work had taken her to and the people she had met though her career.  She spoke about meeting the Queen in her role as Chief Executive of a charity, being invited to Downing Street for tea to meet the Prime minister, dining at the House of Lords and being a guest in a private tennis match between Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic just a week before Andy Murray won Wimbledon.

Julie went on to explain to students that these were things that money cannot buy and that these privileged experiences were available to her as result of her hard work and determination.

To help students further, Julie offered them an insight into what employers are looking for in recruitment these days and gave them advice on how to succeed at interview. She then held a question and answer session with the students who benefitted hugely from her outstanding presentation.

Running to Success

Six members of OBA’s Running Club tried out the local Phoenix Park Run on Saturday 22nd April. On a bright sunny day the students negotiated the challenging 2.5 lap course with Olivia Lewis reaching a personal best time of 36:38 minutes, which was over 6 minutes quicker than her previous record.  An astonishing result, so well done, Olivia!

Mr A Bird said:

The students were congratulated for their behaviour and effort by the Marshalls who wanted to know when they are doing the run again, as they made such a good impression.  Each one of them puts in so much effort to achieve personal best records and I am very proud of every one of them.

Exam Timetable

The 2017 Exam Timetable is available to download from our website as a PDF or Excel file. 

Puzzle Challenge

In the last newsletter we gave you a puzzle to solve. Did you crack it? Check your answer below:

Have a go at this week’s Maths Puzzle Challenge:

You will find the answer in the next issue of OBA’s newsletter. 
Good luck from Miss Arends and the Maths Faculty.

Tech Talk

Welcome to Tech Talk @ OBA, the part of the weekly newsletter where we share useful apps, websites and devices. 

This week’s Tech Talk is going to focus on ensuring your Facebook account is as safe as possible. Facebook is extremely popular with over 1.5 Billion people using Facebook throughout the world. It’s a great way of keeping in touch with friends, family colleagues and sharing some of life’s biggest moments.

However, there have been many cases where people have had problems because of something they have shared on social network. The simple rule for sharing things on Facebook is that if you would be embarrassed to show a picture or a comment to your family, then this is really something you shouldn’t be putting on the internet!

We would urge all students to ensure that your Facebook is made private to avoid any such issues. Below are some screen shots that will guide you to making your Facebook visible to friends only. You need to login to your account using a computer (not using a mobile phone or iPad). 

Privacy shortcuts can be found at the top of the Facebook homepage.

We recommend that you set your posts to friends only and only allow friends of friends to send you requests.

The timeline review feature allows you to block any embarrassing pictures or posts from appearing on your Facebook page.

Finally you should only allow friends to see the posts tagged on your timeline. 

Remember that if you are concerned about something you have seen online, you should report it to your parents/carers, any member of OBA staff or PC Williams. Also, please speak to Mr Hussey if you need any help with making your Facebook account private.

Do you have a piece of technology that you would like to share or that you may have heard of and would like to see explained in Tech Talk? If so, contact Mr Hussey via email:

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