Newsletter January 2018

The Edge Academy – Shaping futures                                    January 2018

  1. Principal’s message – Karen Slater

As ever, the students at The Edge Academy continue to work hard on improving their attendance and behaviour. So far this term, we have significantly increased our attendance rates and reduced our internal and exclusions. This all contributes to raising standards and giving students the best chances of securing good outcomes when they leave. Many students remain with us until the end of Year 11 and achieve a range of high quality qualifications. It is important to the staff at The Edge to ensure all students have the skills and qualifications to go on to further education, training, or employment. For those students on short term placements, our aim is to give them the skills and resilience to be successful when returning to mainstream education.

Alternative provision plays an important part in educating students who have had difficulties in mainstream education. The personalised approach and providing students opportunities to achieve success, are vital in re-engaging them with their education.

  1. Half term holiday

We break up for half term on Friday 16th February. Students return to school at 9:15am on Monday 26th February. Details of the rest of the academic year can be found on our website.

  1. Health advice via text

Young people in Birmingham have access to wide range of health advice and support via mobile devices. ChatHealth text message service was launched in April 2017. It allows young people in secondary school a quick and easy way to request advice about a range of health issues, make an appointment with a school nurse and find out more about other support services in the area.

All young people in Birmingham aged 11-19 can receive confidential support on physical and emotional wellbeing.   To access support, service users simply send a brief text message to the ChatHealth number for Birmingham – 07480 635485. The service will be available from Monday to Friday between 9am and 4pm, excluding bank holidays.

Messages are forwarded to the school nurse covering ChatHealth for that day, who will respond within one working day.

Outside these hours, anyone sending a message to the service will receive an automated reply with advice on where to get help if their enquiry is urgent.

  1. Vocational learning opportunities

We continue to develop our curriculum offer for all students through high quality academic and vocational opportunities. Year 10s have recently started a placement at Southside Learning to develop practical skills within the construction industry. Students have taken to this with incredible enthusiasm and skill.

5. Cookery Masterclass -Thurs 8th Feb

Our latest community cookery class was another success! We love opening our doors to our enthusiastic local community that is clearly full of creative types. A particular thanks to those that donated prizes for our students to support our positive behaviour management strategy.

  1. Joshua Ribera Awards night

Edge Academy staff were incredibly proud to represent the academy at the awards night on 2nd February. The night was a celebration of achievement by students in alternative provision. Congratulations to our winners:

Savannah Baker – Achievement

Savannah completed her education at the academy in July 2017.  During her time in Key Stage 4, Savannah became a young mum to a beautiful baby boy.  She constantly astounded staff with her commitment both to her child and to her studies showing remarkable focus particularly around the exam time.  After leaving The Edge Academy Savannah has gone on to an apprenticeship in hairdressing.

Personal progression – Ryan Lawmon

Ryan joined the academy in July 2016.  He is a quiet, polite student who consistently impresses staff with his attitude to learning.  Ryan has had a number of challenges to overcome and has demonstrated a quiet, steely determination to do this.  He is mature beyond his age and a pleasure to have in the academy.

Ryan represented the academy brilliantly on the night alongside his incredibly proud family and teachers.

7. Volunteers

We have recently been approached several local community members regarding volunteering their time at the academy. This is something we are keen to encourage as our students always benefit from the experience and skills from a variety of adults. Please contact the Principal if interested in giving up some time, however small this may be.

8. Welcome to new staff

The following staff have all recently started at the academy:

Selwyn Calvin – Associate Headteacher

An experienced headteacher, Selwyn is providing The Edge with additional leadership capacity through the Birmingham Education Partnership.

Charlotte Poynton – Senior Teacher

Charlotte has extensive experience in SEN teaching and is a highly experienced teacher, currently leading our Key Stage 3 programme.

Shazad Gulfam – Teacher

Shazad has vast experience of working within the alternative provision sector and is already a popular teacher amongst students.

Shavaughn Best – Interim Attendance Manager

Shavaughn has made an immediate impact since joining the academy. Attendance continues to improve week by week. This continued improvement needs the support of parents and carers, however! Please do not hesitate to contact Shavaughn if you wish to discuss the attendance of your child.

Matt Calbreath – General Assistant

Matt is providing vital extra capacity across the academy to enable us to run smoothly.

  1. Communication with parents/carers

Please remember that as well as handing letters to students regarding academy news, we now put all letters on our website ( and text links to you each time this happens. We also post reminders on Twitter (address @edgenorthfield or go to website at and Facebook (address @edgeacademynorthfield or go to website at Please follow/like our social media accounts as they provide exciting additional snapshots of academy life! Finally, we now also have a parent/carer electronic mailing list- if you have not already signed up for this, e-mail Vice Principal Andrew Wakefield at and we will then e-mail all academy letters to you.

5. Cookery masterclass – Thurs 8th Feb