News Tue, 08 May 2018 11:04:00 +0100 en <![CDATA[Read our Annual Report 2017]]> Today sees the launch of our Trust’s Annual Report up to the end of 2017. The year saw many changes in the national examination and assessment arrangements so it was quite an uncomfortable and challenging year for children, young people and staff. I am pleased with the results overall but more important than that I am delighted that our academies are continuing to flourish and more and more parents and carers want to send their children to our academies.

In 2017, GCSEs changed considerably. We began to see a phasing out of the A*-G grading and an introduction of a new 9-1 scale. Grade 1 being the lowest attainable GCSE grade and 9 being the highest. With a Grade 4 roughly equivalent to the old ‘C’ grade the government insisted that a Grade 5 was now the expected level. In the past few years a new progress measure has been introduced called Progress 8. The national average Progress 8 score is zero with a minus figure indicating that a higher proportion of students were not not making the expected progress and a positive figure suggesting they were exceeding the progress expected.

The Progress 8 average across our academies is 0.02, which puts us above the national average but statistically close to the average. Our academies have a significantly higher proportion of students deemed to be in receipt of pupil premium funding In both primary and secondary age ranges the proportion eligible for pupil premium funding is around double the national figure.

In our Trust we’ve worked hard to close the gap between those children eligible for pupil premium and those who are not. This is a quasi indicator of economic and social deprivation. The progress our disadvantaged students make, which is measured as they leave secondary school, is scored at -0.02. The national average for students from disadvantaged backgrounds is -0.4. So whilst we’ve still not removed the gap between disadvantaged students and their peers we have narrowed that gap compared to other schools in similar circumstances to a point where their rate of progress is close to the national average for all pupils.

The progress made by pupils leaving our primary academies is even more impressive.

Reading progress scores being 0.02 (above but close to the national average), writing being 1.4 (above the national average) and mathematics 2.4 (well above the national average).

The message from these results is that our children are making good progress overall but I truly believe that there is more to a good education than just test results. We need to help our young people realise the benefits of good habits such as arriving on time to school, attending regularly and having a good attitude to learning and co-operating well with others.  Our attendance figures have improved annually, and that’s as a direct result of the high quality education that is on offer.

In the last twelve months we’ve experienced four Ofsted inspections. The first of these was at Co-op Academy Nightingale in Leeds – a school which we built and opened in 2014. Ofsted were impressed by the work the Trust had undertaken in establishing the school and awarded a ‘Good’ grade with outstanding awarded to the quality of care and support on offer. Ofsted also visited our other academies at Co-op Academy Stoke-on-Trent, Co-op Academy Manchester and Co-op Academy Brownhill in Leeds. The trend continued with all of these academies being graded again as ‘Good’. Ofsted inspectors commented on the outstanding leadership and management at the Manchester academy, the high quality provision for pupils from challenging communities at Brownhill and the excellent character education and person welfare support available at Stoke-on-Trent.

During the year, we welcomed three new academies to our Trust (Co-op Academy Priesthorpe, Co-op Academy Failsworth and Co-op Academy Beckfield). All three required additional support to help them achieve a Good Ofsted judgement and we believe we are making the progress necessary to achieve this at their first inspection as members of the Trust. There are many other schools/academies wanting to join our Trust. We’re in a good position to support them as on the 6th April the Co-op committed £3.6 million to support the expansion of the Trust and change the lives of even more young people in the north of England.

Frank Norris 

Director of Co-op Academies Trust

You can download the Annual Report below. 

You can also read more from our sponsor here 

Tue, 08 May 2018 11:04:00 +0100
<![CDATA[Take part in our Parent/Carer Survey 2018]]> As a parent/carer with our Academy, your feedback is very important to help us understand how we are doing, and where we need to improve. We would therefore be grateful if you could take a few minutes to give us your views.

Please go to the following website to complete the survey online. By completing the survey online in this way it will also enable you to enter a prize draw for a TV, provided by The Co-operative Electrical – an on-line business which is part of The Co-operative Group, our sponsor.

Click here to take part.

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 12:40:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Christmas community lunch]]> We held our annual Community Christmas Lunch last week, where student members of the The Prince’s Trust group served an early Christmas dinner to local senior residents.

They also sang carols, played bingo and presented each attendee with a hamper of delicious food. Some of which was kindly donated by our local Stainbeck Lane Co-op store.

The students made placemats and Chritmas cards for the residents, to make the day feel even more festive! 

It was a great afternoon, which students and local residents look forward to every year. A big well done Mrs Murphy and her team of helpers and thank you to Burmantofts Senior Action for helping to organise.

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 10:01:48 +0000
<![CDATA[Student Voice: staying safe in the dark]]> As the darkness sweeps over the country in the early evening, car lights and streetlights come to life.  Students and workers make their way home as the sun sets on the horizon. The workers head home for the night, whereas the nightcrawlers are getting ready to come out and play.

For some, night time can be fun and memorable, but with laughter also comes a wide range of unacceptable activity that causes harm to an individual, to their community or to their environment. This could be an action by someone else that leaves you feeling alarmed, harassed or distressed. It also includes fear of crime or concern for public safety, public disorder or public nuisance. The most popular examples include: causing nuisance, vandalism, littering, firework misuse, drunk or inconsiderate driving and being physically or verbally violent. 

It's important that someone you trust knows where you are at all times and when you are planning on returning home, just in case if anything happened. Other things you can do to stay safe during the dark include: sticking to well-lit busy streets where you can be seen, don’t walk through alleyways or anywhere where no one can see or hear you. Also, try to avoid situations that could harm or get you into trouble. If you’re walking and you see a big gang on the pavement, walk on the other side of the road if possible, or avoid eye contact or anything that could give them the impression you’re looking to cause trouble.

You need to make sure that before anyone, you make sure you are safe, that is the most important thing, and then make sure other people are too. If possible, find a friend or someone who lives nearby to walk home with and split off to your own homes at a point where the distance for both houses is around the same, just so neither of the people has a higher risk of being in danger.

Not only is it getting darker earlier, but the weather is also becoming colder and paths and roads are icing. To reduce the chance of slipping or freezing to death, wear sensible shoes or boots with good grip, a thick winter coat and gloves, so at least if you fall, you won’t cut your hands. Another tip would be to walk on the grass or the side of the road, as close to the path as you can, but walk on the side of the road where traffic is coming towards you, so you can watch out, instead of traffic coming from behind. 

Stay safe and have fun this winter season.

By Tegan Hudson, member of The Stephen Lawrence Committee. 

Thu, 07 Dec 2017 14:18:04 +0000
<![CDATA[Making Christmas cards for our Community Lunch]]> Mrs Thura's PSHCE group are working on their Archbishop of York Young Leaders Award today and supporting the Prince's Trust Christmas meal by making Christmas cards for the hampers. 
They've been working hard gluing and sticking festive cards to brighten up the days of the local residents invited to the Community Lunch with The Prince's trust next week. 
Every year Ms Murphy and her Princes's Trust students host a Christmas Community Lunch where they invite local elderly residents into the Academy for some fun, food and festivities! 
Fri, 01 Dec 2017 10:26:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Understanding sexual consent with Victim Support Yorkshire]]> Shannon from West Yorkshire Victim Support unit visited the Academy to speak to Year 10 students about relationships, social media, young people, consent and the law. Understanding the importance of these issues is vital to maintaining healthy relationships.

Shannon gave the students examples of how two people can see the same situation in two very different ways, explaining that even if you think someone is ‘suggesting’ something you should never act without explicit and verbal consent.

The students watched a video that used a cup of tea as an analogy for sexual consent. The video reasoned that you wouldn’t make a cup of tea for someone if they didn’t want it, and you definitely wouldn’t force them to drink it, neither would you pour it down their throat if they were unconscious. So, the video asked, why would you treat sexual consent any differently?

Shannon also took the chance to bust some myths surrounding sexual consent. She explained that about three quarters of sexual assaults are committed by someone the victim knows. She also explained that regardless of how drunk someone is, it is a crime to engage in sexual activity with someone who is incapacitated by alcohol and drugs. The same rule applies to clothing, regardless of what someone is or isn’t wearing, engaging in activity without consent is a crime.

The students then learnt about the risks of ‘sexting’ and sending personal, sexual images or videos of themselves over messages or social media. Shannon encouraged to the students to think about the consequences of this action before sending anything, including the risk of bullying, blackmail and having no control over the images. She also advised students on what they can do if they had already shared images, directing them to the Victim Support website.

Shannon shared with the students what they could do if they feel like they are a victim of sexual assault, bullying or something related. Students can speak to one of our dedicated Child Protection Officers in the Academy, or a trusted Teacher.

If anyone wishes to speak to someone in confidence about this content, then please contact Victim Support on 0300 303 1971. 

Thu, 30 Nov 2017 12:36:43 +0000
<![CDATA[Ronaldo Vieira goes back to school...]]> Co-operative Academy royalty Ronaldo Vieira came to visit last week, speaking to Year 10 and 11 boys about his journey from Academy student to professional footballer. 

Ronaldo now plays for Leeds United and has played for England's U20 squad, but he attended our Academy with his twin Romario, who is also a football player. Mr Buckley invited Ronaldo into the Academy to speak to some of our Year 10 and 11 boys about what it takes to be successful.  

Ronaldo sat with the students whilst he talked about the five key areas he tries to live by, respect, determination, organisation, personality and communication, explaining that these apply to all areas of life, not just that of a footballer. 

Ronaldo was honest and open with the boys, talking about his struggles and how he overcame them. From realising he needed to work harder for his GCSEs to spending hours training without even knowing if he would get to play a match. 

He encouraged the boys to show respect not only to other people, but also themselves. As building positive relationships with people is the best way to achieve. He credited his own determination for getting him to where he is now, using his own experience to highlight that when you find something you love, nothing should stop you wanting to achieve your goals. 

Organisation, Ronaldo said, goes hand in hand with determination, "being organised helps you prioritise tasks and meet deadlines. Its communicates a positive impression to others around you and builds your reputation."

Knowing more than most how important teamwork is, Ronaldo emphasised how important your personality can be as well. Being friendly, considerate and supportive of others is the best way to show people you care. He said that communicating this to others means they will want to support you, "be polite, show manners, if you communicate well the messages you want to deliver will come across successfully". He used his recent red card in a match as an example of why communication is so important, "I owed it to the fans and my team to apologise", explaining that you have to take responsibility for your actions. 

He then answered questions from the students from "how does it feel to be on FIFA?" to "what inspires you most?", answering each with honesty and integrity. "It was great that our pupils got to hear from Ronaldo, and the inspirational messages he had. Providing guidance on skills and attributes needed to be successful in life will stay with them for a long time to come" Assistant Principal, Mr Buckley.

It's always great to see our alumni doing well, but it's even greater when they take time out of their lives to come back and share their experiences. The session was a great way for the students to see first hand that everyone starts somewhere, and that somewhere might just be our very own Academy. 

Thank you to Ronaldo for taking the time to visit us, and we hope to see you again soon, be that on the pitch or back in our classrooms! 

Mon, 27 Nov 2017 12:02:31 +0000
<![CDATA[Designing Co-op christmas crackers with Hallmark]]> Some of our most talented artists were invited to Hallmark Cards in Bradford to help design next year's Co-op Christmas crackers! 

They got a tour of the building, spoke to the designers and artists and got to see where all the Hallmark magic happens. Hallmark have a room that is just for glitter and buttons and other accessories that make their cards so great. 

Like real designers, they were given a brief to work from including the Co-op's Christmas theme for next year. After some guidance from the Hallmark designers, they all got to work coming up with several designs, which will be sent for approval. Then a selection will be chosen to be put in to production ready for next year. Each of the students will receive a box of crackers as a thank you for their hard work. 

We can't wait to see the students designs be turned into the real thing, hurry up Christmas 2018! 

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 12:13:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Student Voice: The effects of bullying on mental health.]]> Did you know, 1 in 4 people are effected by a mental health problem every year? What if that was your friend, or your family member. Now, what if you were the cause? 

Mental health and bullying can be linked in many ways. For example, they both can make people feel worthless inside. Not only that but bullying can negatively affect a person's mental health.

Sometimes, the bully doesn’t know what they’re doing, they think it’s just a joke, but the thing is, a joke is something both parties find funny. It’s important to realise what you are doing before things go too far.

But, of course, you do get bullies that know what they’re doing, they can bully for attention, jealousy, or because they were once a victim themselves, or currently a victim. It’s good to know why someone is bullying and talk to them about it rather than just shouting at them for it. 

Mental health is a very important part of someone. It’s controls them and can effect how a person thinks or acts. A few examples of the causes of mental health problems can be, sleep difficulties, bullying, abuse, stress and everyday struggles.

The best way to help someone with a mental health problem is to offer help, and someone to listen to them, you can’t force them to talk because they might not be ready but it’s good to let them know you will listen.

Finally, perform an act of kindness today, you can do anything, just do something nice that someone doesn’t exactly have to pay you back for.

-Tegan Hudson, a representative of The Stephen Lawrence Committee

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 10:06:11 +0000
<![CDATA[Ada.Ada.Ada, the woman that time almost forgot.]]> Ms Frost's textile class took a trip to Leeds Central Library to watch Ada.Ada.Ada, a play about Ada Lovelace.

Ada Lovelace wrote the first complex algorithm in 1843, but was then almost written out of history. Written, directed and designed by Zoe Philpott, the show has Ada Lovelace telling her story using an LED dress which she operates- live on stage- using her wearable tech satin gloves.

The aim of the play is inspire future Adas to engage with tech and think about STEM as a career. The students also got to take part in workshops where they got a tour of Ada's dress, Raspberry Pi, circutery, LEDs, conductive fabric and thread that make the dress work.

They also got a chance to recreate the patterns on Ada's dress with Codebugs and coding progrramme Scratch.

It was a fascinating session learning about modern technology and how Ada Lovelace made it all possible.

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 15:01:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Year 10 meet their Ahead Partnership Business Mentors]]> Today some of our most able Year 10s had their first session with their Ahead Partnership Business Mentor. Throughout the year they will meet with their individual Business Mentors to help them gather valuable careers experience and advice. 

The programme focuses on bringing ideas and inspiration through real-life, hands-on experiences. Working with the Ahead Partnership is always a lot of fun and gives our students so many valuable experiences. 

As this was the first session, students and mentors worked together for a number of team-building activities to help them get to know each other. Building real relationships is the first step in making sure the students and mentors get the most out of this experience. 

We think this year's cohort are going to get along great! 

Check out more photos here.

Fri, 03 Nov 2017 15:01:00 +0000
<![CDATA[A visit from Oakwood Year 6 teacher, Mr Giddings]]> Mr Giddings, is a year 6 teacher from our sister Academy, Oakwood. Some of his students last year are now Years 7s here at the Academy. 
He came to visit his ex-students and discussed how they were settling in. The students were very excited to see Mr Giddings again and tell him all about what secondary school life is like. They also very proud to show him their books and work from this year. 
Thu, 02 Nov 2017 11:38:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Healthcare Futures Programme with DuPuy Sythes]]> Some year 10 and 11 students visited DePuy Synthes, part of the Johnson and Johnson group, to take part in their Healthcare Futures Programme delivered in partnership with MyKindaFuture.

The programme aims to inspire young people to consider careers in healthcare and life sciences and to educate them on the range of different opportunities available. 

During the day they took part in several activities including a Health Dilemma team challenge, tour of the site and laboratories and a team STEM challenge. 

They also took part in a question and answer session with Johnson & Johnson employees where they were able to find out about specific roles and experiences.

Thu, 02 Nov 2017 11:22:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Meet Richy, our Year 7 Ambassador]]> Richy is our Year 7 student ambassador. As part of his role, he prepared a speech about his first days at The Co-operative Academy of Leeds and visited his old primary school, Hovingham Primary yesterday to talk to Y6 pupils about his experiences here.  

It was a great event, with Richy demonstrating great leadership skills when speaking to pupils and leading the Q&A session. 

We are so proud of Richy for being a wonderful ambassador for the Academy and having the confidence to represent us in the community. Well done Richy! 

Wed, 01 Nov 2017 12:17:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Henry Barran Centre go to Angel Square]]> Students from our Henry Barran Centre have been focusing on attendance this year, and they've been doing great! Every week their attendance has been getting better and better, with some days being 100%. 

As a well done, our Trust Director Frank Norris invited Mrs Horler, her team and students to visit him at the Co-op headquarters, 1 Angel Square, in Manchester. 

Students were taken on a tour of Angel Square and got to sit in the big meeting room where all the important decisions for the Co-op are made. Some were inspired to ask Frank how they could one day end up working there! 

The day was a great way to reward the students and staff for their self-help and self-responsibility improving overall attendance and for working together to make every learning day count. 

Wed, 01 Nov 2017 10:50:15 +0000
<![CDATA[Our scientists visit The National Graphene Institute]]> Last term, three of our budding scientists travelled to The National Graphene Institute in Manchester to meet Nobel Prize Laureate Sir Konstantin Novoselov. 

They were joined by students and science teachers from our sister academies for a day learning all about the fascinating material, Graphene. They were also joined by Trust Director Frank Norris, Board Chair Russell Gill and Head of the Co-op Steve Murrell. 

Graphene research has been pioneered by Sir Novoselov and his team at Manchester University, and it was for this research that they received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2010. 

The students (and teachers) learnt about how Graphene can be made, and the many uses including as a super conductor and in phone screens. Graphene is also the strongest material ever tested, making it a very exciting material to study. 

All of the students had completed a physics homework in order to attend the day, and for the first (and probably last) time this homework was marked by a Nobel Prize winner. 

Kostya, as Sir Konstantin goes by, showed students how graphene can be mass produced with just a simple strip of scotch tape. Kostya applied a small blot of graphite on to a piece of scotch tape, as the students repeatedly applied the blot to the tape it spread, getting thinner and thinner. By doing this they were getting the graphene down to as thin as possible; graphene is actually only one atom thick.

Everyone was also given a tour of the Institute's state of the art 'clean labs' where most of the graphene research takes place. The labs are so specialist that even the floors are specially made to counteract any interference from passing cars that could affect the measuring equipment. 

The day was an extraordinary chance to meet some of the world's leading scientific minds and learn more about a world-changing material. Not only did the students get expert insight, they actually got to take part in some real experiments in a scientific field that is still relatively new!

Thank you so much to Steve Murrell, Co-op Academies Trust, The National Graphene Institute and Sir Konstantin Novoselov for inviting us to be a part of the event. 

Tue, 31 Oct 2017 11:45:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Tackling religious homophobia with the Naz and Matt Foundation]]> The Naz and Matt Foundation was set up in 2014 after the tragic death of Matt's fiancé, Naz, who took his own life just days after his deeply religious family confronted him about his sexuality. 

In Naz's honour, and to prevent something like this happening again, Matt decided to campaign for and empower fellow LGBTQI individuals and their families. 

Matt works with charity Karma Nirvana, for which we are a beacon school and Mr Mitchell is a patron, supporting them in their tireless work to promote tolerance, acceptance and love. 

Through this partnership, we were lucky to have Matt visit our Academy and deliver some eye-opening talks about the real effects of religious homophobia. 

He spoke to students about his experience, and how it's so important for schools to provide a space for conversation and increased understanding and acceptance of LGBTQI. 

We firmly believe in Equality and Equity for all, and it was wonderful to have Matt in the Academy talking to us about how those values can actually save lives. 

Wed, 25 Oct 2017 15:32:00 +0100
<![CDATA[Black History Month]]> As you all know, this month is UK Black History month, when we celebrate and take pride in the past and present black people, all around the world.

Our world has grown, from being segregated and sexist, to being more open and welcoming, where people have the opportunity to feel comfortable in their own skin.

There is still a way to go until all people in this world feel equal and safe, but we take our time this month to think about the many role models; Martin Lutherking Jr, Barack Obama, Rosa parks, who inspire us to carry on fighting for equality and equity. 

The Stephen Lawrence committee hope you have a safe and happy month and think about our role models and what they have done for us, and how we as citizens of this world can honour them. 

Words by Tegan Hudson, Stephen Lawrence Committee Member

Tue, 24 Oct 2017 09:24:00 +0100
<![CDATA[Black Diamonds are champions of lunchtime football league finals]]> This term Mr Blair and Mr Gregor have been running a football tournament at lunchtime.

Students have competed in short 7-a-side games, with teams have battlling it out over the last couple of weeks.

But today was the decider.... with Black Diamonds beating No Name FC 1-0 to be crowned champions. 

As you can see, their celebration was quite something!

Wed, 18 Oct 2017 15:46:05 +0100
<![CDATA[Year 11 tolerance workshop with The Sophie Lancaster Foundation]]> The family of Sophie Lancaster set up the Sophie Lancaster Foundation after she was brutally murdered just for being different. Her family wanted to ensure a lasting legacy, and to help make sure that this tragedy would never happen again. 

The Foundation works with young people to deliver educational workshops that highlight tolerance, acceptance and discrimination. Mrs Kaur's Year 11 sociology class had been discussing these issues in class.

Using flashcards of different people, the students were asked to pick three people they would want to spend time with and why. They were then asked to pick three people they wouldn't want to spend time with. 

The aim of the activity was to get the students thinking about how they judge people just from what they can see. The facilitator Dena explained that whilst first impressions are important, but they aren't always right. She picked some of the cards students had chosen not to spend time with and gave the class some facts about their life. 

Some students were surprised to find that the person they had labelled an 'emo' was actually a mechanic that liked football and computer games. Likewise, many were shocked to find that Sophie, the girl they had said seemed 'weird' or 'unapproachable' was in fact looking forward to university and volunteering at a community centre when her life was cut short for just being different. 

The aim of the session was to get the students to think twice about what they were saying and how they were judging people that they didn't even know. At the Academy we believe in Equality and Equity, and by working with other organisations that share these values we are helping break down barriers and stop more things like the murder of Sophie from happening. 

Thank you very much to Dena and Adam from The Sophie Lancaster Foundation for running this valuable and moving session in the Academy. 

Thu, 12 Oct 2017 14:27:00 +0100