Dear Parent/ Carer
Here we are at the start of Holy Week. During this week, we will have our end of term services, when we will draw to a close our Lenten journey as a school community. During the service, students will be invited to come to the altar to take a thorn (really a cocktail stick!) and place it into a crown of thorns, wonderfully made by Alan our premises manager.
In the lead up to the service, students will be asked to think about something that they have done or a way that they behave that they would like to leave behind, something that they are sorry for. We will be reflecting on the central message of the story of Holy Week, that God loves us as we are and that His love and forgiveness is bigger than our faults and failings. By adding our ‘thorn’ to the crown of thorns and leaving it at the altar, we are also looking forward to the joy of the Easter message, that we always have the offer of a ‘new life’.
Last weekend was the sleep out at Abbeydale picture house, in support of the St Wilfrid’s centre. It was a wonderful evening, with some great entertainment and a real sense of joy. It was certainly cold overnight during the sleep out, but a great experience to join with people of all ages coming together for different reasons to do something in support of people in a time of need. I was deeply proud to be associated with the students and staff of our two Sheffield Catholic High Schools. I have attached a lovely message from Madeleine Thomas to the end of this blog. Madeleine leads on fund raising at the centre and she was the inspiration and driving force behind the event. I would like to thank Madeleine for all her work and for the inspiration she has provided to our students and staff.
Last Tuesday we had our annual Spring Concert, which was another truly joyful evening and a celebration of the talent and hard work of so many students. The quality and diversity of music was incredible, from Mendelsohn to music from the West End musicals, through Jazz, Haydn and the Kinks! I would like to say thank you and well done to all the students, along with Mr Ward, Mr Wilkinson and all the music teachers who work with them.
As you will note from the diary dates below, there is another evening coming up where our students will share their talent in the performing Arts. The Notre Dame Dance Show on 26th April is being put on by Miss Wilde’s dance club. Having seen some of the dancers perform at other times in and out of school, I can confidently promise another entertaining and fun evening. I hope you will be able to join us.
Before I finish, I will just highlight the letter that went out to parents of Y11 students regarding arrangements during the exam period. It outlines the range of things that students should be doing in the run up to and during the exam period and the ways we will support them in school. If you have a child in Y11, please make sure that you have seen a copy of the letter.
All that remains from me, then, is to wish you a peaceful Holy Week and to look forward to a joyful Easter. For our students and for any families who have a holiday to look forward to, I hope you have a good break and return renewed and refreshed.
Dates for the diary
Last day of spring term; Thursday 29th March
First day of summer term; Monday 16th April
Dance show; Thursday 26th April 7pm-9pm at Notre Dame
May Day bank holiday; Monday 7th May
Spring Ceilidh; Friday 11th May 7pm at Notre Dame
Last day before half term break; Friday 25th May
First day back after half term break; Monday 4th June
Summer Festival including
Summer showcase and art exhibition; Thursday 28th June 5pm at Notre Dame
INSET Day; Friday 29th June
Some things going on in school in the coming weeks
End of term Lenten services; Wednesday and Thursday 28th & 29th March
Easter assemblies; Week beginning Monday 16th April
Y11 leavers’ mass; Wednesday 9th May
Last day of normal timetable for Y11; Friday 11th May
St Julie’s Day; Friday 11th May
GCSE exams begin; Monday 14th May
Y13 leaving day; Friday 25th May
A Level exams begin* Monday 4th June
GCSE & A Level Exams end; Friday 29th June
*Please note, there will be some examinations before this point, but this marks the start of the main A Level exam period.
Message from Madeleine Thomas from the St Wilfrid’s Centre
A MASSIVE thank you for taking part in the St Wilfrid’s Sleepout on Friday night at The Abbeydale Picture House. It was such a tremendous night and there was such a buzz in the air throughout the evening. Your support and enthusiasm was absolutely fantastic and we could not have done the event without you. On a personal level, for me it was really wonderful to have so many teenagers engaging in the event and their enthusiasm was brilliant. I am thrilled that they took part in the main event at The Picture House and they were a credit to their families and their respective schools. They should be very proud of themselves.
Whilst we can never re-create what it is like to be homeless: sleeping rough or living in precarious temporary accommodation, we hope that you gained a little insight into what it is like to not have the comforts of your own home and space for one night and how being ‘homeless’ made you feel and I hope that the students have had time to reflect on their experiences too.
With everyone’s amazing support on the fundraising, we are aiming to raise well over £10,000 for St Wilfrid’s Centre. These funds are vital to the work that we do and will really make a difference to our community. Over the last 12 months alone, the number of rough sleepers coming to the Centre has doubled. Our services are a critical life line and support to many people in dire need in Sheffield.