Yesterday was the first day of trials of the new Readiness to Learn programme starting at Marlwood.  We are very pleased to let you know that this was embraced positively by both students and staff and an air of calm was felt around the school.  The programme will come off trial and be implemented fully on Wednesday, 3rd May. 

Information has been emailed home regularly to parents and is also available on the school website.  Mr Reed, Deputy Headteacher will be holding an information meeting for parents who were unable to attend the last one on Tuesday 2nd May in the school Learning Resource Centre (Library) from 5.30 – 6.30 pm.

Many of our Year 11 students have decided on the route they wish to take at the end of Year 11; whether that is staying on at school, going to college or taking an apprenticeship.   SGS College automatically sends out a prospectus at this time of the year to all Year 11 students so those who may still be undecided can look at other options.  You will receive this from them shortly if you are in Year 11.


Hundreds packed the Armstrong Hall in Thornbury for the Youth Showcase Awards.  Many organisations attending including Krunch, Jigsaw and the Army, Navy and Sea Cadets to promote groups available in the local area for young people.

Entertainment was provided by the street dance group BALPA and the Northavon Youth Theatre Show.

Well done to the 7 students from Marlwood who won awards


Abigail Crew is set to take the stage next month in the latest production from the English Youth Ballet.

Marlwood Student Abigail Crew, who has trained at the Sharon Phillips School of Dancing since she was two and a half years old, was casted for the double bill of Nutcracker Suite and Ballet Etudes, having proven herself over more than 150 other hopefuls in a series of auditions.

Having shown herself in what the company directors have said was an ‘electric’ series of auditions, Abigail, has joined the rest of the company at Bishop Wadsworth School for the first weekend of 10 days of intensive rehearsals to make sure the performance is perfect.

The shows themselves, a matinee and two evening shows, will take place at Salisbury City Hall on April 21st and 22nd.

We have also been told today that Abigail has been unconditionally accepted at Scotland Ballet West.

Well done Abigail – we are very proud of you!


Please follow the link below for the end of Term 4 Newsletter

BRECON BEACONS 24/03/17-26/03/17

Last weekend, the Peru team visited the Brecon Beacons for a training weekend in preparation for their overseas expedition in the summer. 

After arriving at Newcourt Farm campsite, they began learning the many skills involved which including putting up tents and planning the routes for the next day. Saturday included a 25km trek around the peaks and countryside of Wales whilst practicing navigating, carrying heavy loads and working together as a team to achieve our goals.

Sunday they trekked only a couple of hours carrying our bigger rucksacks up some steep gradients whilst finishing in the beautiful sunny weather of Brecon.

During the treks they got the chance to practice walking over a variety of terrains including rivers, boggy mud, forests, fields and mountains.

On reflection, the group felt that they all worked well as a team sharing out jobs evenly which included cooking, washing up and dealing with tents. Furthermore, they encouraged team members with group positivity and overcame all our obstacles whilst always keeping up morale.

Well done to all involved
Join Marlwood Music Students at The Fleece!

Monday 3rd April - Doors open 7pm

>>> The Gobos feat. Richard Sawyer <<<

>>> No Backstory <<<

Tickets £5 - available from Marlwood Music Dept. 


The 2015/2016 Academic Year marks the 50th Anniversary of St Helen’s Primary School, being located on its current site in Alveston.  To celebrate this occasion, the whole school community is concentrating its efforts on raising funds to build a brand new Multi Use Games Area (MUGA) on the site of a redundant outdoor swimming pool.  The aim is to mark this special year by transforming an area of the school site and leaving something for future generations of children in Alveston to enjoy.

To achieve this, £70,000 needs to be raised.  They are hoping to reach this target through a mixture of grant funding, school PTA and individual donations.

They are going to create a paved pathway leading up to the new Multi-Use Games Area and are inviting people to purchase their very own limited edition brick, professionally engraved with your name or special message. This will become a permanent legacy to St Helen’s 50th Anniversary project.  The pathway will be made from high quality paving bricks.  You can choose from a single paver (£50) or a double paver (£75) and then work out what message you would like to be engraved on your brick!

For more information click the link below:

For the fourth time, the Humanities Faculty took 45 students on a fantastic tour of the Bay of Naples, Italy to experience first-hand things that they had studied in class, or to enhance their cultural and historical awareness. Visits to Mount Vesuvius and Solfatara gave Geography students a rare glimpse into a volcano, along with the sights; very powerful smells (Sulphur) gave them a sensory overload. They had very enjoyable visits to Pompeii, Herculaneum and Capri which gave them insights to how the famous eruption of 79AD affected the Roman world.

A guide who accompanied the trip wrote to me stating  - “I wanted to send a quick email just to applaud their behaviour and attitude to their studies during the trip, they were a real credit to Marlwood School and to Mr Helliker and the staff team, you should feel really proud of them.”

Well done to staff and students – it sounds like you had an excellent learning experience!


Well done to students and staff at Marlwood School who raised £197.50 for Brain Tumour Support.  A special thank you goes to Ellie Clark who organised this event.


A group of students from our joint Post-16 provision with The Castle School enjoyed a day out at Oxford University to give them an insight into life at university to help them make future choices.


Both students and staff alike were delighted to meet Oscar and BAFTA winning scriptwriter Bob Baker last Friday.

Mr Baker, who co-authored the Wallace and Gromit films and has written for Doctor Who, spent the day talking to students about life in the film industry.

Starting the morning talking to sixth formers studying creative and media courses before working with children from other years, Mr Baker shared some of his past experiences and answered questions as well as playing some of his work, including a short film he made when he was 16-years-old.

As well as copies of the Flora’s World books, he brought a range of his works and memorabilia to show the students, including a model of one of his creations, Doctor Who character K9, and two eye-catching BAFTA awards.


We were delighted to welcome Richard Hiscock and Richard Craddy from the Rotary Club into school on Thursday 2nd March to present to certificates and cheques to six of our students who had recently been successful in the Rotary Club Competition.

The winners were:-
Senior Competition
Georgina Lewis
Oscar Knowles

Intermediate Competition
Simon Kitson
Megan Handover
Pippa Sumner

These students entries were then put through to the District 1100 Competition, which Freya Bigwood went on to win the Senior Age Category.

Well done to you all!


On Friday 3rd March we welcomed a team in from Brain Tumor Support formerly known as Hammer Out into school to sell bandanas to raise money for families affected by brain tumors.  This is a local charity who we have supported for a number of years on their ‘Go Bandanas Day’


You may have seen in the national and local press articles related to the increasingly difficult funding situation faced by schools.  This is a national issue and schools across the country are faced with very difficult decisions.

It has been hoped schools such as Marlwood, that a government pledge to introduce a ‘National Fair Funding’ formula would alleviate the difficult financial situation we are facing.  Sadly this has proved to not be the case.

We each expect the best education for our children, quite rightly so, however all schools are faced with decisions around their expenditure as a result of the current funding that will require us to reduce the services we offer.  It is always difficult telling people that there is no longer enough money to provide the services that have been taken for granted for a long time but we have reached crisis point along with most other schools in South Gloucestershire and many across the country.  We will manage these decisions with the full intention of maintaining the quality of learning experience of our young people.

We ask for your support:
1)    Your understanding that the way our schools are run may need to change
2)     With our petition at Click here for the link
3)   By writing to your local MP asking them to voice our concerns in parliament.  If you feel so inclined I have placed a sample letter here and your MP will be either:

Jack Lopresti MP
29 The Courtyard
Bradley Stoke
South Gloucesershire
BS32 4NQ


Luke Hall MP
26 The High Street 
Chipping Sodbury
South Gloucestershire 
BS37 6AH
We hope that you feel able to support our campaign, and I thank you in advance.

Parent Consultation 2 will be taking place on Thursday 16th March.  Preparations are underway for the event and we look forward to meeting parent/carers then.  Information can be found on the school website or you can follow the link below.


Mrs Davies, Director of Post 16, Miss Thomas, Assistant Headteacher and I have been interviewing Year 11 students who have applied to attend Post-16 in September.  We have all been very impressed with the high quality of interviews taking place and will look forward to welcoming them back in September ready to start Post-16 study.


We have now had our list of new students from the local authority who will be transferring from primary school to us in September.  Initial paperwork will be sent out in the next few days and we look forward to welcoming them to Marlwood.  The Parents’ Information Evening will be held on Wednesday 28th June and the Student Visit Day is on Thursday 29th June for all those of you who like to plan!

Welcome back to Term 4 – this is a little late as the blog has not been working so far this term which is all tied into the IT infrastructure changes which took place over half term.  Term 4 is a busy term for both staff and students with exam preparation for when the external exams start in Term 5.


The latest version of our Newsletter is available on the School Website under the 'news' tab or you can follow the link below:

Marlwood Term 3 Newsletter



As you may have heard in the media, all schools are currently having to make difficult decisions regarding their budgets. The income that we receive from the government for each student has reduced in recent years, especially for Sixth Form students. At the same time, our costs are rising significantly, for example increased national insurance contributions, local government pension costs, the apprentice levy, and an additional charge for all schools in South Gloucestershire to repay a deficit in the council’s education budget. We had hoped that “national fairer funding” when introduced would relieve the mounting financial pressures, but the indicated increase for Marlwood  School is insignificant, despite us being located in one of the worst-funded authorities in the country under the current arrangements.

The financial position of Castle School Education Trust is currently secure, but we are having to take difficult decisions in order to maintain that position. Yesterday we initiated a consultation on staffing reductions, affecting some leadership and support staff posts at The Castle School and Marlwood School. This will be a challenging time for those colleagues who are directly affected, as well as for teachers who work alongside them.

You may be aware that Castle and Marlwood have shared some Sixth Form courses in recent years, with some students travelling between sites in order to access courses. We have decided that from September 2017, all courses for the new Year 12 from both Castle and Marlwood schools will be co-located at our Gloucester Road site, which will enable us to continue providing very high quality sixth form teaching whilst reducing costs by not duplicating courses across two sites.  Year 13 in September 2017 will continue to operate the same as they have in Year 12, eg using both Marlwood and Castle facilities.


Thank you to all parents/carers who attended the Year 8 and 9 Options Evening last night.

The hall was full of parents/carers who came to hear about the new Options Selection Process.

Feedback from parents/carers was extremely positive.


To catch up with the news from Severn Beach Primary School you can follow the link below:

Click here


I am delighted to let you know that I have received notification today from the Thornbury Rotary Club that following students from Marlwood have been successful in their recent Photography Competition.

Senior Competition
1st Prize - Freya Bigwood
2nd Prize - Georgina Lewis
3rd Prize - Oscar Knowles

Intermediate Competition
1st Prize - Simon Kitson
2nd Prize - Megan Handover
3rd Prize - Pippa Sumner
These winners have then been put forward to the Young Photographer District 1100 Competition ad after much deliberation from the judges I am pleased to announce that Freya Bigwood won the senior age category for the district.

Well done to all students who took part and especially to Freya

Please see information below about an interesting day out available locally in half term



I am delighted to announce that Marlwood will be working closely with JIGSAW and the Mayor of Thornbury, Helen Harrison on a pilot ‘Disability Awareness and Inclusion Programme.  Initially it will be used in schools but it is hoped that it can be adjusted to be used in the wider community.

The latest version of the Severn Beach Newsletter is available on the Severn Beach School Website or you can follow the link below:

Click here to view the Newsletter


Welcome back to Term 3!

The term started off rather chilly for staff on Inset Day as we returned to troubles with the heating system, but luckily the Site Team were able to get it partially working for the return of the students on Wednesday, so although some room changes were needed we were all warm.  The students coped admirably with all the room changes, which luckily were for only one day.

As usual this is another busy term for students and staff.  Details of events are available on the school website.


Many staff, governors and students had the pleasure of attending the Christmas show on Wednesday for which feedback has been excellent.

As well as showcasing the amazing musical and performing arts talent at Marlwood, the format of group tables allowed for Christmas themed quizzes, which made for a much more social and interactive event.

An evening filled with Christmas spirit!

Well Done!


The latest version of our Newsletter is available on the School Website under the 'news' tab or you can follow the link below:

The Newsletter for Term 2 gives you an insight into activities which have taken place during the term and also lists future events for your information.

Year 11 students have spent the last couple of weeks in PSHE lessons perfecting their CV’s for employment.  Today Year 11 students came into school in interview clothing and took part in a 20 minute interview with guests into the school from local industry. 

Feedback from our guests was positive about how well the students had performed.  Information was also given to students so that they could improve for when they start attending formal interviews.

We had over 30 guests from local industry attending and I would personally like to thank them for taking the time to support our students.


The latest version of the Severn Beach Newsletter is available on the Severn Beach School Website or you can follow the link below:

This year Post 16 students have organised the carol services for the school.  They have arranged for the school to go ‘out on the road’ to play to audiences in our local community.
These ambitious events have involved 70 performers from Music, Drama and Dance from all years, the whole of Year 7, local partner primaries and parents and friends of the school. On Tuesday they visited Olveston Parish Church.  The event was superbly managed by Post 16 leaders, and we are incredibly proud of everyone involved. Year 7 sang together really well - something they have been working very hard on in PEPA lessons and they understood what it was to behave appropriately and represent the school.

One parent has written in saying I very much enjoyed the Marlwood Community Carol Service at St Mary's Church Olveston this afternoon. The children sang beautifully (the soloists were brilliant) and both the band and the orchestra were very impressive indeed. Great entertainment all round.  I was impressed by the senior students who 'ran the show' and all the children seemed to be really enjoying themselves.  What a brilliant way to kick-start the Christmas celebrations!”

We have still have 2 more Community Carol Concerts next week:
Monday December 12th: St. Helens Church, Alveston
Tuesday December 13th: St. Mary's Church, Almondsbury


 Thank you to all parents, staff and students who attended the Christmas Fayre yesterday.  Year 7 students were excellent at running the stalls and had come up with some very novel and good ideas.  Post 16 had organised the event with great skill and in doing so have raised almost £500 toward the Expedition to Peru in 2017.

 All students involved were a credit to the school and this is an excellent example of students working together.

 Well Done!


Congratulations to Nadia Woodman in Year 7 who won the House Competition to design the School Christmas Card this year.

For the first time this year Marlwood will be only sending cards digitally to reduce our carbon footprint. 


We had a fantastic evening on Thursday 1st December at our Celebration of Success event.  The evening kicked off with a bang when the fantastic Marlwood Samba Band treated us all to the Batucada Fanfare.  Year 13 House Captains guided us through the evening and we were treated to music from soloist , Chloe Gould who sang ‘On My Own’ from Les MisĂ©rables by Claude-Michel Schönberg and  from soloist – Calvin Preston, who played Etude No.17 by Fernando Sor. We were then played out by our school band ‘No Backstory’ who played Anything and Everything.

Of course the main event of the evening was the prize giving.  Recipients were called onto the stage by Charles Reed, Deputy Headteacher, and a long procession of students, present and past, came to receive their prize.  Over 200 prizes were awarded for attainment/progress in subject areas, 100% attendance and community contribution at Marlwood School.  A huge congratulations to all the winners, whether you were able to attend or not.

Please follow the link below to catch up with the latest news from Severn Beach Primary School.

Press here to view the newsletter

Well done to everyone involved who helped CSET/Premium Partners win the British Chamber of Commerce Education and Business Partnership Award.


OLYMPIC medal winner Sally Conway has paid a visit to Marlwood today to speak about her triumph in Rio, winning a bronze medal for Great Britain in Judo.
The 29-year-old judo star, a former student, returned to the school and spoke passionately to students about her career, and what it was like to take part in two Olympic Games.
Sally commented that “It seems so strange to be back here,” she said. “But at the same time, it feels like I have never left.”
Students and staff were left inspired after Sally’s visit.


Parent Consultation 1 took place last Thursday, 17th November.  The event was well attended and there was a positive atmosphere around the school as appointments took place.  Feedback from staff, parents and students has also been good.

The next Parent Consultation event will take place on Thursday 16th March 2017

Please follow the link below to catch up with the news from Severn Beach Primary School: -


Preparations will be starting with students next week for our first Parental Consultation of the Academic Year, which is due to take place on Thursday, 17th November 2016.

Further information is available on the school website or you can follow the links below:
Letter to Parents

Please follow the link below to catch up with the news from Severn Beach Primary School: -
Link to Newsletter

Please follow the link below to view the latest Marlwood School Newsletter:

Please follow the link below to catch up with news from Severn Beach Primary School: -

Severn Beach Newsletter

Please be reminded that Marlwood will be closed to students on Friday 21st October as this is an Inset Day.  Staff will be undertaking training within CSET.


New Year 7 students have been enjoying a new way of learning at Marlwood School.  Interest has been such that the new learning space called ‘The Hive’ has been featured in the local paper, the Gazette.
Please follow the link below:

The Hive - The Gazette

October has been a busy month at Marlwood, with a very well attended Open Evening on October 6th, followed by 2 weeks of Open Mornings, which we have had to extend into this week due to popularity.  Thank you to all prospective pupils and parents who have attended and all the positive feedback you have given us.  A BIG thank you, of course, goes to the Marlwood School students who have acted as tour guides for these events.

More good news on the reading front!  Sam Newington-Wise has now also become a word millionaire and Mr Douglas’ class are only half a million words off their first class prize.
Well done to you all – I just hope the Learning Resource Centre doesn’t run out of books!


We have seen a busy week in the Learning Resource Centre this week, with Year 7 going from strength to strength with the Accelerated Reader Programme.

In assembly on Monday, Daniel Tsoucalas, Stanley Willmott, George Shrimpton and Tom Claridge were all awarded their certificates as they became Word Millionaires.  Laura Evans was awarded her certificate for 2 million words.

7A have also achieved their second class prize, as they have read 10 million words since the beginning of term! 

7C will receive a certificate for a new school record - the earliest ALL members of a class have taken an Accelerated Reader quiz. Term 1, Week 4

I am looking forward to presenting the certificates to 7A and 7C in the near future for their fantastic achievements.

Congratulations to all students involved!