News

NHS Cadets Programme launches in Hertfordshire

This September NHS England along with NHS Innovation, St John Ambulance and local providers, will launch their new national programme: The NHS Cadets.

The Cadet programme aims to support vulnerable young people aged 14-16 to access meaningful volunteer experiences within a healthcare environment while enjoying relevant training and development opportunities. 

The NHS understands that there are numerous barriers that can prevent younger vulnerable teens volunteering within health care, not least because of their age and by the time they are old enough to do so, they may no longer be interested. The NHS also understands that many people believe the only job opportunities within the NHS are for highly qualified health care professionals. 

The NHS Cadet and Summer Cadet Programmes are fully funded and open to all young people aged 14-16; the programme is particularly relevant to students who may be feeling quite lost in terms of academic options.  

Hertfordshire MIND Network - live Q&A for young people

Hertfordshire MIND Network are hosting a live Q&A session for children and young people on their Instagram platform (@hertfordshiremind), on Tuesday 14th July between 11am – 12pm. They will be discussing tips on how to manage boredom, adapting to change, and promoting ways to help manage our mental health, as well as answering any questions live!

For those who would like to remain anonymous or not on Instagram, MIND are encouraging people to send through questions to cyp@hertsmindnetwork.org and will provide answers to these individually and as part of the live chat. Deadline for questions sent in advance is Monday 13th July at 12pm.

Please join the live chat and/or send in your questions! MIND also be answering any questions that come through the Instagram story for the rest of that afternoon – follow them at @hertfordshiremind. The session will be recorded and available for people to watch later.

   

Coronavirus Monologue - the print version

This is Evie's monologue - you can still listen to the recording by scrolling down and clicking on the link:

Stay inside, save lives. Saving lives by staying inside. Quarantine, it’s like prison but with no bars, a week went by. Stories everyday about people being infected. I noticed something though. New case: 68 year old dies from corona virus! New case: 78 year old dies from corona virus! New case: 89 year old dies from corona virus! “People with underlying health issues, weak immune systems and old people are most at risk!” they said. I’m just a kid. My friends are just kids, we can go out. We won’t die. Our immune systems are perfectly fine!  So that’s what we did, a group of us, meeting up everyday for a week. We’re just kids, it’ll be fine! Until I got a message one night ”Guys, I feel ill, I can’t go tomorrow, I’ve been coughing, a temperature and feel like i can’t breath, it’s probably just my asthma though maybe another time.” That sounded familiar. Symptoms of covid-19: lack of breath, temperature, dry coughs. No, that’s not possible. It can’t of been. We’re just kids. That’s not fair, we have our whole lives to live. Test results: positive. Week after week, day in day out, she was kept in hospital, we didn’t know it was that serious.
 
It frightened us, made us realise how fragile life can be. When you're young, you think you're invincible! You're not! During the time when she was in hospital, I became overwhelmed with emotions. Thinking we might lose her. I felt angry with the world and upset, so upset. I remember crying and crying and I couldn't stop myself. Why would any god allow this to happen in our world? She had never done anything to deserve this. I felt empty. Speaking to her parents was the worst, you could hear in their voices that hope was fading. I've never seen an adult cry, my mum and dad always show me positives. Try to protect me from the harsh realities of life. I get it! BUT then how do you learn to deal with difficulties? No child should be in hospital battling for their life. That phone call I will never forget. It was on Thursday 16th April 2020, that phone call which gave me the biggest sense of relief. She pulled through. Fought this invisible evil. I have so much admiration for her. She is so strong! She did it! She did it without her parents being able to hold her hand, to visit her. She didn't give up! She is my super hero.  

I've been inside for 4 weeks now, only seeing a glimpse of the outside world through my window. Anyone can get it, anyone can be a carrier. Stay inside, save lives, it doesn’t matter if you’re just a kid.
 
Covid-19 has definitely tested us all here. I don't know if we will ever look at the world the same, but maybe that's a good thing. The media is full of images of nature replenishing. Human nature has become selfish, self-absorbed. Is this a way of it telling us to stop-that there is something bigger than us? I know, I will definitely look to the little things more-value my family and friends-not take anything for granted. How much a hug means. Look after each other, really look after each other. One day we will be learning about this in schools in the future, the History of the world and we will all be able to say we lived through that. I am sure I will tell stories to my grandchildren about what life was like but one thing I hope for the future is that we reflect and learn from this devastating experience to create a better world.

 

Competition - Visions of a world after COVID-19

What is your vision for the world after coronavirus? The global pandemic has raised many questions, both on a personal level and about how society is organised, how public health challenges should be met and how economic uncertainty can be tackled.    
Given the thought provoking nature of the situation, UCL and openDemocracy would like to hear the views of young people and they invite you to have a say - putting forward your best ideas for what should come next by entering this competition. 
The competition, run by UCL and openDemocracy is open to school and university students (aged 14 and up) to share their vision of the future, with prizes of £200, £100 or £50 in book tokens plus the chance for personal mentoring from the panel of some of the world's foremost thinkers and some fantastic work experience with either UCL or openDemocracy.

Entrants can submit either a written article, a short video or image that describes their vision for the world after the coronavirus crisis has passed. For further info, please click on the link: World after COVID-19 

Covid-19 Monologue

Talented Year 10 GCSE Drama Student has written and recorded a brilliant monologue about the devastating personal and public effects of the Covid-19 Emergency. Click here to listen: Corona Virus Monologue  

The piece is fictional and was inspired by what Evie had heard about other people's experiences; it was written to be showcased in the Mayor's Celebrations this year. The character Evie has imagined and who speaks, is a 15 year old girl from Hertford who has experienced the worry and fear of having someone close to them hospitalised due to CV-19; she talks about the feelings this provokes and the consequent changes in her outlook and values.  

We hope you enjoy this moving and thought provoking example of a young person's viewpoint of the current situation.     

Key Stage 3 Creative Writing Competition - Summer 2020

Just launched is a new and exciting opportunity for students in Years 7, 8 and 9 at The Sele School, a sizzling short story competition with the theme 'Summer 2020'. We know our students have fabulous creative writing talents and plan is to launch a virtual anthology of their work.

As well as seeing their work in print there will also be prizes for the best story in each year group. Please click on the link to see the rules and some ideas to get you started: Summer Sizzler KS3 Creative Writing Competition 

Want to expand your horizons? The Headteacher recommends: 

Head teacher, Chris Quach, suggests that students wanting to expand their horizons or to understand the world from a different perspective, the following podcast run by two young women exploring human themes through the literary lens would make interesting listening. 
 
Click play and listen https://www.nts.live/shows/literaryfriction
Literary Friction is a conversation about books and ideas, hosted by friends Carrie and Octavia. Each month we interview an author about their book and build the show around a related theme.

Congratulations to Former Sele Students

Huge congratulations go out to former Sele School student, Alex Harris, who has, this month, achieved his Doctorate in Medicine from Cambridge University.
We are extremely proud of you and your tremendous achievement, Dr Harris, and wish you every success in a long and distinguished career in medicine.

 

'Happy as a Happy Thing' is how we feel about our extremely talented former student, Cedar Johnson, who has written, performed and produced this emotional and humbling song and video summing up our lives at the moment in this time of uncertainty and unknown. Please click on the link to visit Cedar's website to watch and hear this excellent production: Happy as a Happy Thing by Cedar Rose Johnson 

CRY Testing Event at The Sele School 

At the end of February, The Sele School was happy to host a screening event run by CRY in conjunction with Bengeo Tigers FC. CRY is a charity - Cardiac Risk in the Young and the screening was intended to help give advance warning of any undiagnosed heart problems that might exist amongst the 110 young people who attended the session. 

After the screening session the following message was posted on social media by Karen Blease, whose son Mathew passed due to a heart condition; the fund that Karen and her husband started in memory of their son helped to fund the event:

Cardiac Risk in the Young Screening Event 

On Saturday 29th February Bengeo Tigers FC hosted their first Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) heart screening event for 14 to 35 year olds at The Sele School, Hertford.  

The private event was funded from the Mathew Blease Memorial Fund held by CRY.

Myself and my husband Steve started the fund in memory of our son who died at the age of 13 through viral myocarditis. The same year there was also another pupil aged 14 at the same school that died through an undiagnosed heart condition, both were football players. We need to prevent this from happening to other children. 

There was a positive atmosphere on the day and I spoke to many of the parents and those who were being screened, before and after the event. the feed back was very positive. 

We screened 110 youngsters on the day which is fantastic. 

A big thankyou: 

To the CRY team that made the screening happen 

To everyone who made a donation to replenish the Mathew Blease memorial fund this will help us to fund another event in partnership with Bengeo Tigers FC. 

Bengeo Tigers FC, Committee, coaches, parents and players for their support. 

The Sele School who provided us with the rooms for the screening. 

Thankyou to Matt the caretaker for his assistance on the day. 

Statistics show there are 12 young people die a week of undiagnosed heart conditions. We need this message to reach everyone.  

Good Citizenship demonstrated at The Sele School

On Tuesday 11th February students at The Sele School participated in a Drop-Down Day where they participated in Citizenship lessons.  Each year group focused on a different theme. 

In Key Stage 3 the Year 7's looked at the Rights and Responsibilities of Citizens; Year 8 investigated what makes up a community and Year 9 examined the Criminal Justice System.   Meanwhile, in Key Stage 4, Year 10 considered Human Rights and developed their understanding of the topic, while Year 11 looked at the Global Community, which included examining the role of the UN and of the EU and considering the impact of Brexit. 

Our Sixth Form Students demonstrated the role of leadership by supporting the Lower School in their lessons and taking a lead in group tasks.  The students were engaged with the variety of tasks they undertook during the day. 

Tasks included; designing community centres, carrying out surveys/questionnaires and participating in role plays and debates.  Students at Sele gained a good understanding of how these topics are vital in preparing them for their future as ‘Global Citizens.’

Volunteering in India

We are delighted to announce that Lily, one of our Year 13 students, has qualified to take part in an exciting volunteering adventure with Project Trust. To qualify, Lily had to independently travel to the Isle of Coll, Scotland, via train, ferry and road to complete a physically, mentally and emotionally challenging week in order to demonstrate to the charity she has what it takes.

Lily is now busy raising the £6,000 required to pay for her flight and lodgings for the year that she will spend in Hyderabah, India; working at a school for blind children. Lily is passionate about becoming a teacher for children with special needs and therefore has deferred her university offer while she takes this gap year.

We are immensely proud of Lily for taking on this huge commitment and all the volunteering work she currently does at Myddleton School, Ware alongside her A Level studies.

Thanks to Tesco, Hertford - Performing Arts Fundraiser

Thanks to Tesco, Hertford Key Stage 3 students will be able to enjoy drinks and snacks when they attend a special - for one night only - fundraising Movie Night at The Sele School on Thursday 13 February. Aiming to raise money for Performing Arts Equipment, Mrs Adams has arranged a series of fundraising events, of which this is the first. 

Showing - Jumaniji: Welcome to the Jungle we hope that students will have an enjoyable evening and would like to thank Tesco, Hertford for their generous support of the event.

Update on the Japan Trip Fundraising drive

We are now pleased to be able to acknowledge the generous donors who have enabled us to reach the current total of £2,900 towards the costs of the trip to Japan to be taken later this year. As previously reported our students have been working hard to achieve the funds needed to enable them to participate in this once in a lifetime opportunity and have enjoyed the support of Sele Governor, Stephen McEnally throughout the process. 

In addition to grants gratefully received from the Newton Exhibition Foundation, Hertford Town Council, Hertfordshire County Council's Locality Budget and the Rotary Club of Hertford, the four students and their teacher would like to give particular thanks to Tom McMullen (Joint Managing Director of McMullen's) for his very generous personal donation.        

Hertford Town Council supports Sele students 

We are pleased to be able to confirm that Hertford Town Council, through their Community grant scheme, has generously supported our fund raising drive to enable four of our Year 12 students to travel to Japan this summer. Recognising the fantastic educational opportunity offered through the Clifton Scientific Trust's UK-Japan Young Scientist Workshop Programme, the Town Council's Finance, Policy and Administration Committee voted to award The Sele School £1,200 to enable our students to participate in this prestigious scheme.    

Grants were also awarded to three other local organisations and good causes. The Chairman of the Finance, Policy and Administration Committee, Cllr Bob Deering, said “The Town Council are extremely pleased to be in a position to award grants to such a range of good causes in the Hertford area. It is such a wonderful start to the New Year and it is hoped that this additional funding will make a difference to these organisations that carry out excellent work in the community. These initiatives will help provide some positive cultural additions to the town and the community and support the Hertfordshire Year of Culture 2020.”

Julia Bateson, Chair of Governors at the Sele School added “This grant is a major boost for the four students who are currently involved in fundraising a total of £10,000 towards the trip to Japan. We are overwhelmed and delighted that the School has been chosen as one of only five schools across the UK to participate in this prestigious international Young Scientists Workshop and we thank Hertford Town Council for their generous contribution.”

Further details of the planned trip to Japan are in the News item below and for a full report of  Hertford Town Council's local grant awards please go to their website. 

Sele students heading for Japan 

Four of our Year 12 Science Students along with one teacher, will be heading for Japan in July at the invitation of the Clifton Scientific Trust. The Sele School is privileged to have been offered a place on this prestigious scheme for the third time, as this opportunity is only open to five schools nationwide. 

With the support of Sele Governor, Stephen McEnally, students have been working hard to obtain sponsorship and raise money to enable them to participate in this chance of a lifetime. To date the magnificent total of £2,900 has been raised and the students concerned wish to thank all of the donors and sponsors who have contributed for their generous support.     

We look forward to further fundraising efforts by FOSS and by the students, as they work towards the total they need for the trip. We will report on their experiences of meeting international students and spending time in Japan later in the year.   

Sele students in Hertford Dramatic and Operatic Society Panto

Later this week (Wednesday 15 to Sunday 19 January) three Sele students will be taking part in the HDOS Traditional Pantomime, Sleeping Beauty, at Hertford Theatre. Our Head Boy will be taking  a role in the back stage organisation that makes the performance run smoothly, while one of his fellow Sixth Formers has multiple roles as a dancer, zombie and sprite.

Meanwhile one of our Year 7 students will be helping out with props while also taking a role in the chorus and appearing as a rat and a ghost. We hope that they all 'break a leg' as the saying goes.

Tickets for the pantomime are available from Hertford Theatre box office.       

Democracy in action at The Sele School

It was a Liberal Democrat victory for Joe Thomas in Sele’s very own mock election. With the real elections upon us, it was the perfect opportunity to mirror such an influential event for the entire country, giving students an insight into the procedures and the importance of a general election. 

Five Sixth Formers took on the role of candidates for the main political parties and along with their campaign teams, researched their policies and wrote their campaign speeches.  Candidates and their teams promoted their parties in various ways across the school, ranging from leaflets and posters to campaign songs, campaign videos and interrupting assemblies to promote their message. 

Behind the scenes other members of the sixth form were busy preparing the polling station; collating the school’s electoral role; producing the ballot papers and every other job that ensured a successful running of events. 

Finally, the big day arrived - Thursday 12th December 2019. The school was eagerly anticipating the long-awaited speeches from each candidate: Tom Gilbert (Conservative), Naomi Jay (Green Party), Joe Thomas (Liberal Democrats), Regina Vargacz (Labour) and Renee Walters (Brexit). 

Every speech was well researched and delivered, with a huge focus being on the Education, Health and Environmental Policies each party had.  Each candidate also had a fair bit to say about the other parties’ policies, as well as Brexit! 

However, there could only be one winner and after a day of student and teacher voting, the Liberal Democrat candidate, Joe Thomas, was declared the winner of The Sele School 2019 elections. Joe gave a very professional and inspirational speech that ensured a landslide victory with 212 votes (55%).  Joe was very surprised at his victory and thanked his opponents and his team for all their hard work.  He also thanked the voters for recognising the qualities he had as a candidate.  

The prize for the best campaign team was awarded to the Liberal Democrats who had spent hours producing very professional videos, leaflets and posters and who were leading the campaigning around the school.  They had also taken over the school canteen’s cakes with their Liberal Democrat flags!  Prizes were also awarded to the most organised team, which was the Conservative Party, led by William Quinton. 

With the results announced and the speeches over, it was time to thank each candidate for participating, as well as the rest of the sixth formers who volunteered to be a part of this important Citizenship event.  The whole school was involved in the election and students were able to see that every vote really does matter!

 

 

Sponsored read

Congratulations to Erin Morgan of 7JD the winner of our sponsored read who enjoyed a magnificent eight hours and 40 minutes of reading.   

FOSS - Raising Funds for Performing Arts Equipment

We have a wonderful Christmas Hamper donated by FOSS on display in Reception at The Sele School and tickets are on sale from Tuesday 10 December. 

Further details are on the 'Letters sent Home' page. 

Summertime Special Olympics Fundraiser

The summer seems a long time ago but Sele was delighted to host a netball tournament, earlier this year, to help raise funds to enable Special Olympics East Herts to send a team to the National Games, due to be held in Liverpool in 2021. England and Saracens Mavericks star George Fisher attended to help raise funds for this very worthy cause.  

Sele Open Day - Biscuit Brilliance

At our recent Open Day visiting children learned about religious symbols and were tasked with recreating them using only biscuits and icing; there were some excellent results.

 

Jeans for Genes Day - fundraising for Genetic Disorders UK 

On Friday 20 September 2019, the Sixth Form Senior Student Committee will be holding a ‘Wear Your Jeans Day’ as part of Jeans For Genes.  This initiative will raise funds for Genetic Disorders UK which provides services for families with a member who has a genetic disorder.

In order to support this cause, students will be allowed to wear their own jeans to school on Friday 20 September 2019 instead of their school trousers or skirt. They must, however, wear the rest of their uniform including their blazer, shirt, tie and school shoes on that day.

We ask that every student taking part and wearing jeans to school on Friday 20 September donates a minimum of £1. This will be collected in on the morning of Friday 20 September, during form time.

Thank you for your generosity and continued support.

Dementia Cupcake Day - fundraising for the Alzheimer's Society

The Sele School will be holding our cupcake day on Thursday 19th September. The objective is to raise funds to help with the costs of pioneering research, crucial support services and vital care. 

The Alzheimer's Society say that in the average time it takes to bake a batch of cakes, six people in the UK will develop dementia, which is now the leading cause of death in England and Wales. Dementia has overtaken both cancer and heart disease to be the UK's biggest killer; unfortunately, no cure for dementia has been discovered as yet.

We hope to do a little to help, with members of staff and students joining in the school's fundraising efforts.  

Year 10 Maths Enrichment Day at the University of Hertfordshire

In July Mrs Lee, Mathematics Teacher, took 11 students from Year 10 to the University of Hertfordshire for a day packed full of fun and challenging mathematics.

Throughout the day, the students participated in multiple activities which included a workshop that required them to create a pyramid with a regular hexagonal base using just a 20cm square piece of card. The challenge was to draw a net and construct a polyhedron that would give maximum volume from the small piece of square card supplied!

There was also had a workshop discovering the mathematics in magic. The students were taken through some magic ‘tricks’ and then introduced to the algorithmic nature of many of the tricks which relied on the properties of number in order for them to work.  The students had great fun and then satisfaction when they could understand how the ‘magic’ happened!

After lunch the students were given a talk on ‘The Creation of Number’ delivered by Ben Sparks from the University of Bath. He discussed and put open to debate whether numbers are created or discovered. This debate expanded into the wider philosophical reaches of the ideas of mathematics and made the students think about the fundamental concepts that build up our understanding and application of the complexities of mathematics today.   

Sports Day

After really bad luck with the weather caused Sports Day to be run in stages while dodging the summer downpours, we finally have a result:

              Year 7           Year 8           Year 9            Year 10       Overall    Points

1st          Bayley           Bayley             Castle            Castle          Bayley    1265

2nd        Castle            Castle             Bayley            Bayley          Castle     1217

3rd         Shire              Shire               Shire              Shire            Shire      1066

Sele in the News

It's always nice to get a mention in the national press and earlier this year we were delighted to be name checked by former Sele Student Emma Liu when she was interviewed in the Financial Times weekend magazine. Now the Leverhulme Research Fellow in Volcanology at Cambridge University's Department for Earth Sciences; Emma's research involves the measurement of the metals in volcanic emissions. When asked about her early education, Emma referred to attending The Sele School, followed by studying Earth Sciences at Oxford then a PhD in Volcanology at Bristol University.

Our other mention in the national press came in the Saturday magazine of The Guardian when a 'Let's move to' article featured Hertford and listed The Sele School as being 'good' in accordance with our most recent Ofsted report.          

University of Hertfordshire Pathfinder Day

Students in Year 9 recently visited the University of Hertfordshire to take part in a Pathfinder Day. The aim of the Pathfinder Days to introduce pupils to University life and inspire students to succeed.

Student took part in quizzes and discussion about University life as well as taking a tour around campus to see how students live on site. The day was summarised with them taking part in a group challenge to display what they had found out from the day by showcasing not only their knowledge but creativity and presentation skills.

The students were engaged and worked really hard giving the staff a tough job to pick a winning team Here is what some of the students had to say about the day:

“I liked the fact that they showed two point of views of the different accommodation there; living away from the uni or living on campus”

“I liked how the University showed us different careers we could pursue and what life on campus would be like if we went there.”

“Today started with some games including quizzes. I was put into the blue team. This was the start of a point scoring, which ever team got the most points through the day would win.

Next we had a break followed by a presentation on essentials of university life. This was followed by a tour of the university. I found this interesting as I could see what was on offer at the university.

After the tour we had lunch.

Lunch was followed by having to estimate the amount of budget for living in university. This gave me an insight into just how expensive it could be.

The winning team was announced at the end of the day, the blue team won. We were given a bag of random gifts.”

Sele Students raise funds for Charities

Year 11 students at The Sele School in Hertford presented cheques to representatives from three different charities during their assembly. Each of the charities were chosen after a vote by the students when they were lower down the school.

11 Castle supported Keech Hospice a local charity; 

11 Bayley supported Mind, a national charity and

11 Shire supported The Smile Train which is an international charity.

The form captains promoted their charities during their time at school by delivering assemblies to raise awareness about the work of their charity and arranged a fund raising event. The students arranged for students and staff to participate in a hoody day, where for a donation of £1.00 students were able to come to school wearing a hoody instead of their school blazer.

This was a popular event and a total of £375.00 was raised. All donations were distributed between the three charities and presented at the assembly.

Sharn Tomlinson accepted the cheque on behalf of Keech Hospice; Sally Patterson accepted the funds raised on behalf of Mind in Mid Herts and Ian Vallance collected the donation on behalf of The Smile Train. Each representative spoke about what the money could do for their charity; Sharn  Tomlinson exclaimed "We were very impressed with the school; it was a pleasure to meet the young people."

Elaine Buxton, Head of Years 10 and 11 who arranged the initiative, said "It is fantastic to see our young people so engaged in choosing and supporting these causes. It has been so successful that we hope to repeat this in the future with up and coming year groups." 

New Mini-Bus for The Sele School

The Sele School is delighted to have been able to purchase a new mini-bus recently, with both students and teachers now looking forward to travelling in style. We are very grateful to The Friends of Sele School (FOSS) who kindly donated £4,000 towards the cost of the new vehicle and would also like to thank Councillor Bob Deering who arranged for the school to receive a further £1,000 towards the purchase from the Herts County Council Locality Budget Scheme. 

Should you be interested in becoming involved in FOSS details of who can join and how to get in touch are on the FOSS page of our website.

Year 8 PGL Trip to Wiltshire

On Friday 17th May, 45 students and five members of Staff set off for Liddington in Wiltshire.

The weather for the weekend looked promising with no forecast of rain. Although it was a bit drizzly on arrival, it didn’t dampen our spirits and over the weekend the weather got warmer, with the sun eventually coming out on Sunday.

On our first day we took part in Raft Building and Giant Swing. Raft Building ended up with everybody getting very wet in the lake as the rafts we made with barrels and rope unfortunately did eventually fall apart.

Giant Swing is a huge swing for two. With the help of the group the ropes are pulled making the swing go as high as possible; the chord is then pulled, causing the swing to fall and then rock forward and backwards.

Saturday was another busy day enjoying Zip Wire, Orienteering, Crate Challenge and Course Challenge. Ending with dancing the evening away at the Disco!

Sunday was an early start, up at 6.30am, with rooms to tidy and breakfast in the restaurant, before finishing our weekend with Sensory Trail and Abseiling.

The coach journey home was a very quiet one and although most of the students were very tired they all agreed that they had enjoyed a great time away.

Year 7 Castle Challenge

Year 7 student Niamh writes enthusiastically about a recent history project.

'Year 7 took part in a fun project where we had to design & build a castle. We had to choose a location and think carefully about the population, movement of people and goods as well as ensuring that the castle could be easily defended. Then we were tasked with writing a letter to the builder, detailing what we wanted to be in our castle and how we wanted it designed. Next, we were given a castle shopping list and told that we had 130 shillings spending limit, making sure that we had the necessary structures for a well-defended castle. These included: a keep, portcullis, barbican, towers, curtain wall, moat and many others.

We had to complete two drawings – a side view and a floor plan. These had to be labelled and have everything drawn on. In order to succeed in preventing our teacher from attacking our castle, we had to match everything up. The floor plan, letter to the builder and the budget sheet had to show all the same items.

The final task was to bring the castles to life. This could have been done as a drawing, model or it could have been a virtual castle. Building a castle was challenging because you had to follow the plans exactly. So if you had made your plan complicated, then it would be a harder job to create it. Creating the castles was also fun because it was a task that encouraged us to be creative.'

The winning castles, judged by Mrs Winship were as follows - 

1st: Harry and Niamh, 2nd: Leonie, 3rd: Natasha, Honourable Mention: Lilly, Virtual Castle: Gareth, Students' Choice: Lola and Most Creative Media: Amy.

Wear Red for Comic Relief

Sele Students were literally seeing red on Friday 15 March when the 2019 Comic Relief challenge was to exchange an article of their school uniform with something red instead. Articles of red clothing could be accessorised with a red nose for those who didn't mind being partially 'red in the face'.

Students rose to the challenge, paying a small fee for the privilege and raising over £200 for Comic Relief. We congratulate them on their sometimes imaginative interpretation of the 'wear red' brief and on their fund raising efforts.      

Year 7 PGL Trip to Wiltshire

Between 8th and 10th February, Year 7 students went to PGL in Wiltshire where they took part in all sorts of activities. One of the firm favourites with the group was the very exciting giant swing and zip wire where students wore safety harnesses and were clipped on to a metal bar.

As well as a variety of sporting activities, there was also evening free time fun, which included a disco and several rounds of party games. One student stated “My favourite part of the night was when we played Splash; in the game, we had to wrap up a water balloon in cardboard boxes and tape to protect it and then test if it would pop when being dropped from a high height.”

Overall, the trip was an adventurous and exhilarating expedition that the students  would love to do again.

Maths Club

One of our Year 9 Students writes about the enjoyment and challenge of Maths Club.

Every Tuesday after school from 3pm to 4pm the school’s Year 11 mathematicians run our Maths Club. Students from Years 8 to 11 who are very able in mathematics are invited to attend the club where we learn and practice problem solving skills with various types of puzzles like crossnumbers and relays and we race to see who completes the most problems in the hour. We also play maths games like Chess, Otrio and Mastermind or we complete Tarzia maths puzzles.

This is all practice to prepare for the national UKMT mathematics competition which takes place at Cambridge University each year. There are only four members per team so we work hard in order to be chosen to represent the school. I attended last year and I hope to be chosen again this year.

Race for Life - 14 December 

One of our Year 9 Students writes about our annual fund raising Fun Run - the Race for Life.

Every year, the PE Department holds a Race for Life at the school, where everyone is invited to take part and raise money for Cancer Research. We are encouraged to get sponsored to do the run and we can even wear fancy dress on the day!

The race itself is three laps around the perimeter of the school’s fields; which is a lot more challenging than it sounds! Most teachers took part in the race and the others are placed along the course cheering you along the way, however, if you are like me and jog the whole route, you won’t have much breath to talk back!

At the beginning of the race I wanted to walk, but when we were encouraged to jog at least some of it, once I’d got started I didn’t want to stop jogging. When I finished, I realised some of the others I had just gone past still had one more lap to go, which made me feel even better about what I had accomplished.

I managed to achieve 3rd place in my year and in the first fifteen of the whole school! I then also enjoyed cheering my friends on to the finish.

Year 7 Trip to Verulamium

One of our new Year 7 students writes about a school field trip to the historic site of the Roman town of Verulamium.

In the first term of Year 7, we went on a trip o St Albans to visit the Verulamium Museum. After arriving in St Albans, the year was split into five groups and we explored the museum.

At the beginning we watched a video about the history of the city. We then were given a worksheet, full of questions about the information displayed about the many items on display in the museum and gradually we all completed the worksheet.

We were took part in a workshop with the museum staff where we learnt more about the artefacts and even had the opportunity to touch and hold them! It was great fun and we all really enjoyed the day.

Sele triumph in the VEX Robot Rumble 2019

At the VEX Robot Rumble, held at the University of Hertfordshire in January, The Sele School Year 10 Robotics Team beat fifteen other schools to win the overall competition. This was the culmination of nine months of weekly sessions spent designing, building and programming the robot and was a first time win in this Tournament for The Sele School. 

One of the team reports that the Sele robot had four wheels and a claw that operated with brutal force but it seemed as though the team might be down and out when the claw stopped functioning while the team was lying in third place. However, there were alliances to be made and by working together with John Warner School and both teams playing to their robots respective strengths there was a points bonanza propelling the Sele robot through the quarter and semi finals and into first place. 

Congratulations to Izzy who built the robot, Callum the programmer, Bruno the strategist and to Tom, Josh and Megan who drove the robot through 14 challenges to take the title. We congratulate them all on this fantastic achievement.  

Sixth Form Enrichment Day 2018

Head Girl, Gemma reflects on a recent visit to Tate Modern

On the 24th October 2018 The Sele School Sixth Form travelled to the Tate Modern in London for a day of modern art. We split up into smaller groups allowing us to better investigate the various art installations that were within the converted powerhouse. For the A-Level Art students it gave them a chance to take photos to help with their portfolios and, for the rest of us, it was a day away from school where we could view art that we wouldn't normally see.

One of the first rooms that we explored was a room with nothing in it. It was an exhibition that took a slightly different form to the art that you would normally expect to see. The room had been filled with an organic compound designed to make us cry. Its goal was to have you think about the immigration crisis currently impacting the world, to think of all those that had been displaced by the various wars. The organic compound was certainly overpowering and some did cry. Many of the pieces throughout the galleries were designed to be thought provoking, forcing you to stop and think for a minute. Others were simply demonstrations of the amount of time, dedication and effort people have to put into their work. However, there were also some that were just peculiar, including a Sainsbury’s receipt for a transaction amounting to just over £53.00.

This Enrichment Day certainly had been interesting and we all came away from the day better informed.

For more images of the Sixth Form visit to Tate Modern please see Galleries.

Sele Science Students experience Japan

Two sixth form students from the Sele school, accompanied by teacher, Robin Atkins, spent ten days during the summer taking part in a prestigious UK - Japan cultural and scientific exchange.  The school was selected for the second year running by the Clifton Scientific Trust in Bristol, as one of only six schools in the UK to be invited to the 2018 exchange.  After a rigorous selection process Victoria  and Jordan were invited to represent the school in Japan.

This year the trip was centred in Sendai a city in the North of Japan at the renown Tōhoku University.  Here the students attended workshops where Victoria investigated cellular viability using fluorescent probe technique and Jordan researched and produced innovative science supported defence and avoidance strategies in the wake of natural disasters.  The science workshops culminated with each workshop presenting their findings to their peers, university professors and sponsors representatives including Tetsuya-Kodama, Chair of Barclays, Japan who addressed the presentation event.

The exchange also included a full cultural programme of visits and activities. There was a trip to Tsuruga Castle and visits several sites in near Sendai affected by the Tsunami caused by an earthquake of the Pacific coast in March 2011.

There were newly constructed Evacuation mounds 11 metres high as the tsunami of 2011 had reach a height of 8m and penetrated 5km inland.  Alongside the new defences was a memorial to those who had lost their lives in the tragedy.  At these Millennium Hope Hills Victoria said, “I have felt inspired by how the Japanese work as a community to restore their lives and prevent future devastations.”  Adding “Japan is a very beautiful country and I have loved every second, so I am very grateful for this opportunity.” 

This part of the itinerary culminated at the Yuriage Junior High School where over 800 people sheltered from the tsunami on the top floor school roof. Whilst the first two floors were inundated by water and debris.

Having left Sendai on the Shinkansen “bullet” train the students travelled to Tokyo for an overnight stay and a day of sight-seeing.  Here the Sele students accompanied by teacher Mr Atkins visited the Tokyo Skytree, one of the world’s tallest buildings at 540m, the Pokemon Mega Centre in Sunshine City and a shrine dedicated to Benzaiten.

Reflecting on the trip Jordan said “Japan is beautiful. That first bus journey was an awesome showcase of the natural beauty of Japan: green, glowing, healthy rice paddies as far as the eye could see. Meeting the Japanese students was nerve wracking but looking back the trip has been one of the most influential starting points for any event of my life so far.”  Neil Dunn the Head of The Sele School is confident that his students will once again be invited to participate in the 2019 exchange planned for at both the UK workshops in Cambridge University and the Japan workshops in Kyoto city, the ancient capital of Japan.

 

Sele Students visit the Big Bang Fair 

Recently Mrs Lee took a group of Year 8 and 9 students to The Big Bang Fair regional event held at the University of Hertfordshire.

The Big Bang is a UK-wide programme led by EngineeringUK to bring science and engineering to life for young people.

The students had a great day exploring science, technology, engineering and maths! They dipped into the Heavy Metal Mayhem of the Marine World in ‘The Blowfish’ seminar. They attended the ‘Night School’ presentation by Professor Richard Wiseman where they explored the new science of sleep and dreaming. In The National Space Academy lecture they explored the ideas and concepts of space and what it is like to be an astronaut. In the ‘From Cradle to Grave’ dynamic and interactive presentation, engineers showed how engineering improves our quality of life from before we are born!

Ivy from 8 Shire said I really liked the Night School because it was talking about how your brain reacts to different things and we got to look at illusions and we learnt more about what happens in your brain when you’re asleep.

Eni from 8 Shire said I found the Royal Veterinary School information station really interesting because I like how the people informed us about the different animal bones and organs. We held sheep’s brain, pig’s brain and giraffe toe! I also held a horse jaw! The station was fascinating and the Vet at the stall was telling us about her research. It was great.

Sele Students meet Prince Edward

There was delight and excitement when five students from The Sele School were invited to take part in the Duke of Edinburgh Award exhibition at the University of Hertfordshire, which took place in June. The event was run especially for Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex, who was there to see the excellent work that schools from Hertfordshire are doing for the Award. 

The Prince, who has taken over as patron for the Duke of Edinburgh Award, took a keen interest in the students’ performance.  After watching The Sele School students perform a dance which was based on the values of the Award; challenge, teamwork and independence, he then spent a few minutes speaking with the dancers about their experiences of doing the Duke of Edinburgh Award.  

Frejya Coltman-West, one of the Sele dancers, said ”We had an amazing experience performing in front of the Prince; it was an occasion I will never forget”. Josh Mockridge, Brooke Mills- Ward, Teagan Fossey, Freyja Coltman-West and Daisy Corbett, who are all doing their Bronze award, produced a flawless dance routine, which they had spent many weeks preparing under the guidance of their dance teacher Erin O’ Dell and with the support of Richard Eversley, Design and Technology teacher and Duke of Edinburgh leader, Richard Eversley.

For more images of the Duke of Edinburgh Exhibition Event please go to Galleries.