Saturday’s Open Morning was extremely positive and visiting parents spoke highly of both the pupils they met and the staff. One parent noted the sincere pride their student guide had in the school. I should also note how delighted we were to have former pupils return to act as guides. Their loyalty to Stoke and belief in the value of the education they experienced is a real testament to the commitment of the whole school community.

Whilst we were disappointed to hear that our expected visitors for the coming week are unable to join us due to visa problems, the 5 little Chinese boys who spent last week with Mrs Milnes’ class had a tremendous time. Their teachers were sad they had to go, feeling another week would have really helped them attune themselves to the Stoke style of education. It was, nevertheless, a valuable week and memorable for our Key Stage 1 pupils too.

One interesting comment the visitors made was that their boys weren’t used to so much space or fresh air. Life is quite different in Beijing and it reminded us how lucky we are to have our children in such a beautiful, healthy environment and to be able to run around outside so much.

On Thursday we opened the conversation with our Year 11 students, holding our sixth form information evening. It also coincided with a similar event at Stour Valley School where we took a lot of enquiries. We very much hope that not only will a good number of our own students study for their A levels and BTECs at Stoke but also that they will be joined by other local students, keen to have such high quality education so close to home.

This week we are holding our Sixth Form taster day for Year 11s and they will have a chance to experience six different A level lessons. We expect it will be a key day for students as they start to form their ideas on what they wish to do post GCSE. We will follow it up with a consultation exercise with parents and pupils to help us draw up the best curriculum offer possible for 2018. Any parents of Year 11 pupils (or younger) who wish to find out more, please contact Mr Stuart.