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  Term 1 - October 2023  
  Message from Mr Humphreys, Headteacher  

Another busy and purposeful start to the year. Year 7 have made a great start and been incredible ambassadors for the school at our Open Evening and Open Mornings. The impression they have made on staff and prospective families has been very positive and that reflects well on the school. There are now 1020 young people enjoying life at St Katherine’s. The school remains full with waiting lists for each year group getting longer each week. We are the most oversubscribed school in North Somerset alongside Bristol Cathedral Choir School in Bristol.

The school has taken much time to consider its approach and it is useful to remind ourselves of all the pieces of our curriculum that we have shaped at St Katherine’s over recents years. A deliberate journey which has given much thought to each element. Students now enjoy a very high quality curriculum experience at St Katherine’s.

Our curriculum is at the heart of our school with our expert teachers imparting important knowledge, skills and understanding, complemented by many opportunities and experiences throughout a student journey from Year 7 to Year 13.

Important knowledge, skills and understanding delivered through our taught curriculum - a rich three year Key Stage 3 with real depth of content, followed by a broad choice of options at GCSE and A Level.  A deliberate curriculum with increasing refinement about what is taught in each unit, which are the key concepts and what is the important knowledge to be delivered.

Reading is prioritised and our mission is for all students to enjoy and love reading, one which I know all parents/carers share with us. Ms Wild leads this work and her passion and belief will impact positively all students, including some who are more reluctant readers - we are on our way to support you. Our carefully selected Must Reads for each year group continue to engage and challenge our students, not to mention our St Katherine’s School Bucket List - must read before you leave - which is reviewed annually.

Enrichment continues to provide all students with a range of new experiences through Years 7-9; supports Year 10 with study skills and thinking ahead; and Year 11 with important subject specific intervention. Years 12 and 13 enjoy a leadership programme alongside a ‘giving back’ opportunity.  

Trailblazers provides all students with the opportunity to discover a musical instrument in Year 7 and many choose to continue with this in Year 8 and beyond, creating personal enjoyment and entertainment, not to mention the opportunity to perform in school and in Bristol Cathedral at CST events. This now forms part of your child’s enrichment and an opportunity to perform in an orchestra.

Sport is in our DNA and we want all young people to be involved in at least one sport to keep them physically and mentally fit. What club is your child involved with?

Our Houses provide a sense of identity and belonging and are now embedded in the life of students and staff at St Katherine's. A careful and deliberate choice of inspirational figures which carry important messages - we remind us all in weekly assemblies.

Respect, Responsibility, Resilience represent our core values and provide a baseline of expectation for all members of our community.

Outdoor Education promotes the great outdoors and allows friends to share moments and create great memories trying something new or indulging in something they enjoy. It was great to hear students reflecting on their Duke of Edinburgh experiences and the success of our Toubkal expedition. More than 160 students in Year 9 now enjoy Duke of Edinburgh and our Year 11 and 12 students who were involved in the expedition now look at life and the world through a different lens - powerful educational experiences.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion at St Katherine's has a clear mission; educate, give voice and celebrate. Our busy calendar includes many moments to help us fulfil this mission alongside the many groups we have established in school; PRIDE, Neurodiverse, Feminism to mention a few. A recent conversation with three passionate Year 13 students has highlighted we have important work to do after they were left disappointed with the profile of Black History Month at the end of this term. We listen, will reflect and make sure the future is better.

Reviewing our work and sharing this with guests is a pleasure and I encourage you to talk to your child/ren to make sure they are getting fully involved with life at St Katherine’s. Our passion and pride continues to burn in our hearts as we educate and prepare our wonderful young people for life beyond the gates of St Katherine’s.

Enjoy the newsletter which reflects on a great start to 2023/24.

Justin Humphreys, Headteacher

  News from the Library Resource Centre  
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Accelerated Reader Success

It's very early days yet, but students are quizzing away.  We already have 2 millionaires though, congratulations to:

  • Hamish, 7Y2 

  • Walter, 8T2 

All our quizzers win house points for each quiz pass for a fiercely fought house competition. Mr Court is particularly proud to see Stephenson currently in the lead but it's still all to play for, so get quizzing!

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Roald Dahl day quizzing fun

On 5th October we held the first Library event of the year, our Roald Dahl Day quiz. 12 Year 7 teams had signed up to pit their Roald Dahl knowledge against each other. The outright quiz winners were Tallulah (7Y2), Lola (7P2), Lili (7P1) and Alisha (7P2). They all won some Roald Dahl goodies, including chocolate, of course. The final fling (literally!) was for students to see who had the golden ticket under their chair - so Serena-Summer (7P2) won an extra chocolate bar!

Huge thanks to everyone who came along to this quiz and for making it such great fun - I hope everyone who took part enjoyed their first Library event!

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Reading ideas

Feeling a bit stuck for ideas on what to read next, or stuck in a rut and looking for something different? There are loads of ways to get

book inspiration! Come to the Library and take a look at the often-changing, themed displays. Look online - there are some great book ideas on the school website. Use the Library screen for new ideas.  Ask an expert - pop into the Library at break/lunch and ask Ms Wyld!

Book Buzz 2023

We are really proud to be able to take part in this project, which gives every student in Year 7 their choice of a free book (yes, free!!).

Our students have just been introduced to the 16 titles they can choose from, and there really is something for everyone in there. The orders have been placed, so now we are just patiently waiting for those exciting boxes to be delivered.  

If you have a student in Year 7 ask them which one they chose!

  Summer expedition to Morocco  

At the end of Term 6, a team of Year 10 and 11 students embarked on an international expedition, aiming to climb the tallest mountain in the High Atlas Mountains and indeed North Africa, Jbel Toubkal (4167m). They would spend two weeks in Morocco, completing voluntary work and trekking in the mountains to the South of Marrakesh. The expedition was intended to develop key skills such as communication, teamwork and leadership as well as independence and travelling skills. 

Many of the team would be making their first footsteps into North Africa. Going from a drizzly day in Bristol to the blistering heat of Marrakesh took everyone by surprise as they stepped out of the aeroplane. The team organised themselves into roles such as leader, accountant and those responsible for accommodation, food and for transport and security. The food team's first job was to navigate the streets of Marrakesh at night to find a restaurant for twenty hungry, hot and tired people!

After a night in Marrakesh, we boarded a bus and began winding our way up and out on dusty mountain roads, climbing ever higher into the High Atlas. After spending a night in Oukaimeden, the team began a short trek to the next destination. Gaining a high mountain pass (Tizi n’ Ou Addi 2920m), the team were afforded stunning views, before descending down treacherous paths to the isolated village of Tacheddirt, where they would complete project work.

The project was organised in close connection with the village elders, who told the team what was most needed in the village. Once the job was decided and materials were collected, the team organised themselves into work groups. They were asked to assist in the construction of two new paths, connecting the lower and older part of the village, with the newer road. This would allow vehicles to deliver supplies from the market more easily, particularly in the harsh winters.

The work was physical, often moving heavy rocks and buckets of cement along long lines that snaked up steep hills and slopes. A typical day would start early, have a long pause for lunch before finishing up in time for the sunset and dinner. Regular refreshments came in the form of glasses of mint tea, biscuits, figs and dates brought by the locals. 

The team relaxed in the evening by watching the goats and sheep come in from the hills, or playing football with the competitive locals. The clear mountain air allowed for some unforgettable star gazing, watching shooting stars and satellites dance across the sky. 

Everyone ate very well at all times during the expedition. The team cooks, Omar and Abdul kept us fed with amazing traditional food. Every meal ended with the tea ritual, where gratitude and respect were shown by how high your tea was poured from. Eating, talking and laughing whilst surrounded by incredible mountain views was an incredible experience.

Whilst on project the team interacted with the locals; learning the local Amazigh language, visiting local homes, meeting and talking to young people about their lives, getting henna designs or witnessing local customs for the preparation of meat. They were given an amazing and real perspective on life in this small and remote village. In particular, speaking to Habiba, who studies in Marrakesh, about making the long journey to go to school. She spoke of how tradition and poor access means difficult decisions about education and family must be made.  

The project was finished with both paths being completed and ready for use. There was a ceremony with music, dancing and singing from the local workers before the team gave their thanks and said their goodbyes to the Tacheddirt elders. 

Next, began the long trek to base camp. This would take three days to complete, with an acclimatisation phase to adjust to trekking at altitude. Leaving Tacheddirt, the team moved over high passes and into deep glacial valleys in the heat of the sun to the village of Aroumd, south of the town of Imlil. This was to be the start of the trek, as they climbed up to the refuge at the foot of Jbel Toubkal. The terrain became increasingly more arid and the climbing was difficult as the air thinned. 

In order to adjust to the altitude, they walked up to a high pass at Tizi n'Ouanoums (3660m). This gave them a chance to experience the team work, communication and efforts that would be involved in the ascent of Toubkal. 

The team were camping at the foot of the steep ascent up to the summit of Toubkal. They were pitched in simple tents, and ate together under a shelter. All water was brought up from a small river of snowmelt water. The rough and dry ground did not make for a comfortable night of sleeping, and felt like a long way from the Biblins campsite in the Wye Valley where they had trained.  The conditions were tough and the team soon longed for the comforts of Aroumd and Tacheddirt! 

But soon it came to the team's ascent. With bags and equipment ready, they woke early, getting ready to leave early in the morning before the sun could make walking tricky. With the light of head torches to help pick out sure footing, they crept out of camp whilst the mountains around were shrouded in darkness. A tricky and sustained scramble gave way to a more gradual, but equally challenging bald scree path. As the sun begin to add glorious colour to the slopes around, the team slowly pulled their way out from under the summit.

Counting every metre of height climbed, and singing their way up, they finally caught sight of the summit cairn. With North Africa stretching out before them, they reached the top in cloudless skies. A phenomenal effort from the team who dug incredibly deep at times to reach the top. 

After a snack of figs, nuts and dates they picked their way down the slope to base camp and took a day's rest to recover. Many team members were rightly exhausted and camp was particularly quiet. With one final day of trekking, they made their way back to the lush greenery of Aroumd and the comforts of the gite. Saying goodbye to the support team who had taken great care of them during the trek, they packed up for Marrakesh. 

Walking slowly back to civilization was a surreal experience, and the air conditioning and music in the bus, a guilty pleasure. One final meal watching the sun set over Marrakesh allowed the team to reflect and say thank you to guides Mohammed and Aziz. Both men were experienced and incredibly knowledgeable. They had a great passion for not only safely exploring the mountains, but also sharing their Amazigh culture. They made the team feel comfortable and gave great learning opportunities during the expedition. 

With bags packed and the last of the dirhams spent at the airport, the team boarded the flight home and set off back to St Katherine’s. Bleary eyed and tired from the expedition (and also the 4am arrival time) they were reunited with their families and ready for the summer holidays.

A massive congratulations to the whole team. Everyone of you showed moments of sheer brilliance and character at different points. Whether it was excellent leadership, amazing sense of humour, slowly coming out of your shell or trying new things (e.g. soup!), you all did yourselves proud. You should be very proud of all your efforts and reflect on what an amazing experience you had! 

A massive thank you to Mr Hake and Miss McInerney who supported the team, keeping them safe and sound. These trips cannot run without staff who are willing to give up time away from their families to offer these opportunities to students. Thank you to the admin team, Mrs Crompton and Mr Francis-Black who have supported the organisation of the expedition. Our thanks also go to Matt Woodfield, the technical leader for the trip and the team at True Adventure who provided round the clock technical and logistical support whilst on expedition. And thank you to the parents and families of the team, who encouraged and supported them as they prepared to take part in the expedition.

St Katherine’s is looking forward to organising the next international expedition and if you are interested in taking part please look out for details. We are also planning other expeditions that will be a little closer to home, but will still offer fantastic character building opportunities.

In early September, the whole world was shocked and saddened by the devastating and tragic earthquake that struck Morocco and subsequent floods in Libya. The impact of this was even more chilling given the proximity to where the team had recently been exploring. We have made contact with the people that we met in Morocco. The news is that all are safe and well, and it is likely that the village of Tacheddirt is relatively unscathed being at higher altitude than a lot of the harder hit towns and villages. Our hearts go out to the people of Morocco and to the Amazigh villages in the High Atlas. The team will be organising some fundraising efforts in the near future.

Mr Hodgson, Outdoor Education Lead

  Meet our new House Leaders  

Jack and Morgan are Pankhurst House Leaders


I wanted to be a House Leader to develop my leadership skills and make a positive contribution to the House. I also thought it might make me stand out when applying to university and jobs in the future. We have been helping out with assemblies and I spoke at awards evening, which was a bit nerve wracking! I’m looking forward to working with the tutor reps and helping encourage the younger students to participate in the House competitions. And of course I’m hoping to achieve a good set of GCSE results.


Well it’s fair to say that I was slightly hesitant at first but Mr Murdoch persuaded me that I had the skills to do the job and I decided to give it a go. It’s a good opportunity to develop my leadership skills and pass on my experience to the younger members of the House. 

We spoke at awards evening which was enjoyable. We have helped with settling people in assemblies and will meet with the lower school tutor reps next term.

My major focus is my GCSE examinations but I am looking forward to helping Mr Murdoch with the running of the House and encouraging and supporting the other students in the House.


Abdulrahim and Oliver are Stephenson House Leaders


The house leader role was appealing to me for two main reasons. Firstly, house leader would put me in the position to make a change according to what my friends and peers needed or wanted, almost being that middle man between teachers and students. Another reason is that I took an interest in the role and wanted to be part of the wider St Kath's community in Year 9 looking up to Jon and Daniel. Wanting to take risks and face challenges with the feedback that I have received from my tutor and tutees I know my strengths that will make me a great leader.

Since I was appointed I have been to numerous assemblies helping Mr Court, greeting the House as they come into a calm start. I've had my first public speaking where Oliver and I gave a speech to parents and carers at the House Celebration assembly.

In the long term, I'm hoping that Oliver and I can secure Stephenson and Mr Court his first treble. I am also looking to overtake Yousafzai in the House Competition, however. like Mr Thomas used to say 'It's a marathon, not a sprint'.


I wanted to be a house leader because I wanted to have more opportunities to suggest new things or speak about things that matter to me. So far, I have assisted in assemblies and been asked for ideas regarding Fun Fix Fridays. I am hoping to contribute more to the wider community.


Evie, Roary and George are Turing House Leaders


I wanted to be a house leader because I thought that it was a great opportunity to develop leadership skills and to take on greater responsibility. As well as this, I hoped that I could give students a voice to make them feel supported. 

Since being appointed, I have taken on many tasks such as welcoming students to assembly, reading a speech at the awards evening and also helping out at the school Open Evening with the house display. We are hoping to encourage many students to participate in many house competitions, in order to succeed in winning the House Trophy this year. Additionally, we hope to maintain a safe environment for the students here so that everyone feels supported.


I wanted to be a house leader because I wanted to expand my leadership skills and inspire others. Since I have been appointed I have taken on the task of welcoming students to assembly, reading a speech at awards evening and also helping out at Open Evening.

We are hoping to encourage participation in the many different competitions, in order to succeed in winning the House trophy and making an environment where students can feel safe, supported and able to ask questions when they need to.


I wanted to be a house leader so I could be the person people look up to. I really take pride in my sport and this is a good opportunity to express it.

Since Roary, Evie and I were appointed, we have supported Mrs Price in assemblies;  announcing the Tremendous Turing of the week, visiting tutor groups to ensure house notices are read out and there are Turing representatives in the house competitions. 

Together, we are aiming to foster a strong sense of community and participation within Turing House, as well as making sure everyone has a voice.

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Theeban and Mae are Yousafzai House Leaders


I wanted to be a house leader as I wanted to give something back to school. I wanted to use what time I might have left at St Kath's to make a difference. I also wanted to be a good role model to students in younger years - encouraging them to push themselves out of their comfort zones and to stand up for what they believe in! 

Since being appointed, I have cheered so loudly at sports events that I have lost my voice on a number of occasions. I have also enjoyed welcoming the new year 7 students into our school and have taken time to get to know them and help them as they navigate the site.  I have also supported Miss Andrews with assemblies and celebrating Malala's birthday. 

I would like to make a difference this year. I am keen to get a few community projects off the ground as well as just being there to help and support in any way I can.


I wanted to be a house leader to make myself more confident in assemblies and be a strong role model for students in younger years so if they ever needed advice or guidance they could come to me as a friendly house leader to listen to them. 

Since being house leader I have helped in every house assembly we have had, I helped decorate the school with fun activities for Malala's birthday (Theeban and I helped to provide ideas), we have supported Miss Andrews as much as we can with anything she needed. 

For the rest of the school year I am hoping to raise more awareness for young people's mental health and to also focus on more house sport activities and encouraging people to step outside of their comfort zone. 

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Year 11 Futures Day

Year 11 took part in Futures Day on the 17th of October. All students attended talks from inspirational guest speakers such as Junior Saunders who talks about growth mindset and Ollie Price, an ex St Katherine's student, who is now in the RAF and talked about the failures he endured before reaching his career goal.

Post 16 speakers also attended to talk about routes into apprenticeships and colleges, giving students key information about what they could study, how to apply and when the open days were. Throughout the day, students also completed a Unifrog task, looking at career options and took part in a mock interview with an external employer. 20 employers attended the mock interviews, asking students questions relating to soft skills such as initiative, teamwork, resilience and going above and beyond.

All Year 11 students took part in this process and the effort shown throughout the interviews was fantastic. Students were able to receive personalised feedback from the interviewers that can be carried forward when they do real interviews in the future.

As Year 11 Coordinator, I was really proud watching the students' involvement in those interviews. They represented themselves and St Katherine's fantastically with employers noting they were impressed by their fluency, confidence and ability to sell themselves for the amazing young people they are. 

We are so grateful to all the local businesses who donated their time and assisted with the mock interviews for our Year 11 students on Futures Day. We got overwhelmingly positive feedback from our students about their interviews, and really appreciate the efforts of all those who helped make the day a success. 

Miss Robinson, Year 11 Coordinator

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Hello Yellow 2023

At a time when it’s needed most, our school community came together for #HelloYellow on World Mental Health Day to support young people’s mental health. St Katherine's School joined thousands of other schools, offices and community groups on Tuesday 10th October who were also taking part in #HelloYellow. The school was awash in vibrant yellow with staff and students wearing something yellow to show our commitment to creating a community where mental health and wellbeing is valued.

Students used tutor time to talk about what they would do if they were worried about themselves or a friend and discussed scenarios that they may experience in school and what to do when this happens. This served as an opportunity to signpost the support on offer to students in school and in their communities and raise awareness of what we can do to help. Resilience is one of our school values and students were reminded that there are things they can do themselves to improve and protect their mental health including getting enough sleep, exercising, eating well and talking about their worries.

If you are worried about your child or one of their friends, you can speak to your child's tutor or another member of staff at school. You can also complete a Tell Someone form which is on the school website if you need to share a concern anonymously. We are still counting the money raised by the event that will go to Young Minds and hope we can beat last year's figure of £123!

Mrs Crocker, Assistant Headteacher

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  To read is to have the power to learn  

At St Katherine’s we’re prioritising reading, because we know that reading enables students to succeed in every subject. Here are just some of the ways that we are promoting reading:

Every Key Stage 3 student is expected to read for at least 20 minutes at home. This is set through their English classroom. Students record their reading on their reading log which forms the basis for individual conversations with an English teacher in their fortnightly library lesson. 

AM registration tutor time begins with ten minutes of Drop Everything and Read (DEAR) time.

Tutors celebrate students’ success with reading weekly, and support individual students who need more help by forming action plans to suit their needs. 

House competitions for reading log completion are celebrated regularly by tutors and Heads of House. 

In years 7 and 8 all students participate in the Accelerated Reader scheme. They are encouraged to quiz every book as soon as they finish reading and receive praises each time. There is a house competition for Accelerated Reader which is fiercely fought and celebrated regularly. 

In year 9 students are encouraged to read our Bucket List of ambitious reads, and participate in the Bucket List review house competition. 

Students benefit from regular access to our well stocked school library and knowledgeable, proactive librarian. 

Many students join secondary school without having gained sufficient mastery in reading. Reading is an incredibly complex skill that must be mastered to a high level. Students must gain automaticity to such a degree that the reading process occurs apparently instantaneously. 

In Year 8, students who do not have phonics gaps but need to improve fluency and comprehension to access the curriculum can be selected for:

  • the Herts for Learning Reading Fluency Project  - teacher led, intense sessions focusing on reading with expression.
  • the Lexia programme - online, personalised tuition supported by 1:1 face to face support.

In Year 7 students are tested for gaps in their phonological awareness. 

  • We support students with Read Write Inc Fresh Start - a catch up programme. 
  • Each student receives 30 mins every day with a specialist phonics-trained TA, mostly 1:1. Students are withdrawn from a range of different subject lessons. 

For more information about how you can support your child with reading, please contact Immalee Wild, Lead on Reading on

Ms Wild, Lead on Reading

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  Sixth Form Update  

This term could only be described as a whirlwind. A huge welcome to all of our fabulous new Year 12 students who have made a tremendous start to their new courses. We look forward to sharing their settling in checks with you shortly.

Some of the highlights have been our brand new Study Skills event that saw all of the Sixth form students attend a carousel of workshops from a range of speakers including Evolve. A special thank you to Mr Sugden who delivered an incredible session to our young people about the different methods of studying and their effectiveness. As part of the package that we have secured with Evolve, parents are invited to attend a series of workshops about how best to support the students with their learning at this stage in their education. We will communicate the different themes and the links to join in our parent communication each week.

We preceded the study skills day with a team building event delivered by the army, during which students were tasked with completing various challenges whilst reflecting on their leadership and teamwork styles. The feedback from students was overwhelmingly positive, despite the treacherous weather, and it was a joy to see the smiles on the day.

Our brand new CST Sixth Form rugby team have been training hard and have competed in a couple of fixtures already. 'It has been the best experience, we are just having a great time' Kanye and Waide (Year 13) Despite injuries, facing professionals and having very little time to practice, the boys have performed excellently and are thoroughly enjoying the opportunities that our trust has provided.

The Year 12 students have faced their early hurdles in their chosen subjects and Year 13 are well under way with completing their personal statements and preparing for those next steps. A huge thank you to all of the tutors who continue to provide our young people with the daily pastoral care to ensure they are on course to secure their best outcomes. As I write this, we are literally clicking the send button for some of our Year 13 students who are submitting early applications to Oxford and Cambridge. 

I am not sure how the students have found the time but they have also been instrumental in supporting and leading on the Macmillan Coffee Morning, Hello Yellow and training up to become literacy mentors and peer listeners. Like I say a whirlwind and we can't wait for term 2.

Save The Date

On November 2nd, parents and carers of Year 11 students are invited to attend our Sixth Form Open Evening from 6pm-7.30pm. We will be offering insights into a range of subjects, hearing many of our students share their experiences, and offering a small taste of sixth form life. Please register on here.

Mrs Weatherson, Deputy Head of Sixth Form

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Macmillan Biggest Coffee Morning

On Tuesday 26th September our whole school community came together to raise money for the Macmillan Biggest Coffee Morning. The weather was kind and the sun shone long enough for students and staff to meet on the field and buy a range of delicious cakes.  

The Sixth Form fundraising team did an amazing job decorating tables and setting up the tables for students to be able to buy from. There was a Fair trade table supporting the school group.

The selection was amazing and we raised £882.00 for Macmillan Cancer.

A huge thank you to all for supporting the event, those who baked and sent in cakes to sell.

Mrs Shephard, Head of Business

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Future Brunels

In the Faculty of Science we are very excited to share about our exciting, new partnership with the SS Great Britain: the Future Brunels

Each year, the Year 7 students that show the most enthusiasm for science, engineering and technology in their science lessons will take part in two exciting, all-day, STEM workshops, created by Babcock engineers and the SS Great Britain. Based on the students' teamwork, tenacity and innovation, the SS Great Britain team then selects three students to be a part of the programme. Last year, students said that they enjoyed the day enormously. 

If selected, the programme involves a number of enriching activities and trips with the SS Great Britain trust, such as visiting the SS Great Britain ship, trips to power plants, university labs, Aardman Animations and many more fascinating experiences. The first such activity involved making cameras using the chemistry of traditional dark-room photographic techniques. One student described the day as “simply incredible” and is already excited for their next trip to the ship. 

Congratulations to our first Future Brunels: Cass Casey, Arlo Edwards and Evie Sell. 

This year’s Year 7 selection day is due to take place in March and I look forward to updating you all on the exciting adventures of our St Katherine’s Future Brunels soon.

Mr Sugden, Science Teacher

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Jess enjoys London Fashion Week

Despite only heading up to the London School of Fashion in September, former Head Student Jessica Stanley has already started taking over the world of fashion. 

She managed to get a job as a dresser for a couture fashion show at the London School of Fashion, and has already met the show's creative director, the legendary designer Jimmy Choo. 

Jess has also recently competed in the finals of the Miss Teen Great Britain after winning the title of Miss Teen Bristol earlier in the year. Jess placed 8 out of 63 girls as well as gaining a side award. - Huge congratulations to Jess from all of us at St Katherine's, please do keep on updating us with your news!

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Year 10 Business Trip St Nicholas Market

This term Mrs Shephard and Mr James took 65 year 10 business students to St Nicholas Market in Bristol. Students learnt about how businesses meet customer needs and wants, how different businesses attract customers and how businesses compete with each other.  The students were able to interview business owners to find out how they stated their business.

Mrs Shephard, Head Of Business 

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  Gold DofE students complete their expeditions  

Students in the Sixth Form are working to complete their Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award. This is the highest level of the world-leading youth achievement award. Participants must complete months of voluntary work and physical activity as well as other committed efforts towards self improvement. 

This work then culminates with an extended expedition in wild country, which takes in a minimum of four days and three nights camping. 

As part of their training for the expedition, the small team of Year 13 students headed out into the southern end of Eryri (Snowdonia National Park) to the area around Dolgellau. Completing a three day journey from Dinas Mawddwy across Cadair Idris before finishing on the northern side of the range.

The team braved incredibly arduous conditions, with tough terrain under foot and driving wind and rain. Carrying large packs and climbing steep hills, they dug deep to reach the summit at Penygadair (in fortunately glorious conditions). 

Ten days later, the team were back in the minibus, this time heading north on the M6 to Cumbria and the Lake District. With the forecast looking bleak for their expedition, the team set off from Eskdale hoping to make camp on the shores of Wastwater. Strong, arduous winds, very poor visibility and constant rain meant the team had to make rapid changes to their plans in order to remain safe. 

Despite this, they kept in good spirits and pushed on to climb to the summit of Scafell Pike, the tallest mountain in England. The conditions were atrocious, but the team managed themselves incredibly well. On the final day, the team got the clear skies they had been hoping for, and some fantastic views of the peaks that had been hidden in the clouds!

Congratulations to Dylan Hewett, Daisy Medder, Scarlett Newby and Balint Fekete. They are an incredible team and showed real character, strength and resilience. The staff are incredibly proud of them, and they should be proud of themselves. 

Thanks should go to Jake Drysdale, who was unfortunately injured in training for the expedition, but met us at school on our return to welcome the team home. Thanks too to Mr Francis-Black for assessing the team and for showing some excellent driving skills, which were hard not to be impressed by. 

Next step is to get assessor’s reports written and completed. The team will be the first to complete the Gold award in St Katherine’s history (as far as Mr Parsons can remember anyway!), which would be a monumental achievement for them and we wish them all the best for getting it finished.

The next Gold team has started signing up and more information can be found on the google classroom

If you are interested in completing the Duke of Edinburgh Award at Gold, Silver or Bronze level, or would like to know more please email

Mr Hodgson, Outdoor Education Lead

  Headteacher commendations  

Key Stage 3

Year 7: Alex Lincoln, Hamish Culverhouse and Ella Bolton.

Year 8: Eve Ward, Walter Rogers, Michal Spurrel and Seb Giza.

Year 9: Kayleb Perkins and Mckenzie Daniel.


Key Stage 4 and 5

Year 10: Buddy Escourt, Faisa Ismail, Isobel Charlewood, Luke James, Fatima Butt, Khalid Bulaleh, Anaiya Brady, Manon Herzog, Leyton Jarrett, Elsie Reed and Fin Kelly.

Year 11: Rhys Parr, Casper Delve, Olive Pearson, Isaac Lee, Ikran Issa, George Wilkinson and Zakary Olivier.

Sixth Form: Kanye Christie and Alfie Steadman.

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  House Championship  

Time has flown since returning to school in September and it is hard to believe that we are already one sixth of the way through the House Championship for 2023-24. 

As I write this piece for our newsletter, I am looking out over our beautiful playing fields and watching our Year 8 students taking part in the annual cross country competition. Year 7 have already run the course and Year 9 compete on the last day of term. The cross country results will be added to the scores from Term 1 and may change everything in terms of the standings in the House Competition. The students and the Heads of House know this and wait with baited breath to see how all of the runners get on.

As always, in Term 1 we focus on punctuality to lessons. We place a great deal of importance on students making the most of every learning opportunity available to them and getting to lessons on time is one way students can do this and show responsibility, which is one of our school values. The House Competition is won and lost on the ethos competitions and I have been delighted to see that this first ethos competition has been very closely fought with each Head of House giving students weekly updates in assembly about their performance.

Pankhurst House should be congratulated for making huge improvements in their punctuality to lessons compared with last year. However, it was Stephenson House whose students showed the greatest responsibility and they took the win this time.

We have a renewed focus on reading at school. We know it is the single most important thing that students can do to ensure their success. Therefore, the House Championship competition is heavily loaded with competitions that promote reading for everyone - the Accelerated Reader Competition, the reading log competition for Years 7-9, and the Bucket List reading competition for Year 10 will weave throughout this academic year. Stephenson House won the accelerated reader competition. Stephenson, Turing and Pankhurst Houses had wins in the reading log competition for Years 7-9 respectively and Stephenson and Turing House tied for first place in the bucket list reading competition for older readers. 

We have a broad range of competitions that run alongside the ethos and reading competitions and these are aimed to give everyone their moment in the spotlight. Some highlight important events like the European Day of Languages bake off competition that coincided with our Macmillan coffee morning. Pankhurst House bakers took the win here. Some competitions are just for fun and allow students to experience friendly competition and make new friends. We have done this in the hula hoop and ping pong cup challenge this term. The hula hoop competition had to be stopped as competitors from both Stephenson and Turing Houses can hula hoop for longer than lunchtime lasts and so a draw was called as the result.

We're off to a great start and the early results show that Stephenson are leading with Yousafzai and Pankhurst in hot pursuit in 2nd and 3rd pace and Turing in fourth.

Mrs Crocker, Assistant Headteacher

  Pankhurst House Update  

Well it's hard to believe that Term 1 is at an end already as it seems only yesterday that we started the new term bemoaning our lack of sunshine in the summer holidays; they say that time flies when you're having fun so maybe that is the answer! 

Pankhurst students have certainly had some fun competing in various house events this term and the hula-hoop competition was a particular highlight with some students being so good they could probably still be going now! Jayden Bebbington, Year 11, in particular stood out as a student with excellent technique that put others to shame (the less said about my efforts the better). Alongside the Hula-Hoop competition we won the Bake Off competition with an entry from Chloe Strange, Year 7, and we were pleased to finish second in the Roald Dahl quiz, which represented another sterling effort from our year 7 students who have settled into life at St Katherine's very well. 7P1 in fact are the Pankhurst tutor group of the term and have set a superb example for other students to follow with a bucketload of praises and positive attitudes that are an example to all. They have set a high bar for others to step up to. 

The main Ethos competition this term was based around punctuality to lessons. As I have frequently reminded the house, being on time is in the top three qualities employers look for and 43% of employers have sacked people for lateness. It is a basic courtesy and takes no skill and I was therefore pleased that we finished second this term which is an improvement on the fourth we finished this time last year! This has helped us reach third in the House Championship overall with very little between us and Yousafzai in second place. I feel it's going to be very close this year.

One area I have challenged our students to improve in is with the competitions around reading. With the exception of Year 9 we had a disappointing performance in the Accelerated Reader competition, the reading log competition and the bucket list competition. I've set all groups the challenge of improving this because as we all know reading is vital and of course it will bring us points towards the House  Championship. I'm looking forward to the brief break and the start of term 2.

Mr Murdoch, Head of Pankhurst House

  Stephenson House Update  

A new era in Stephenson house history began this term as I took over from Mr Thomas. We have welcomed our new Year 7 cohort, as well as two new Stephenson tutors in Mrs Mathai and Mr James. Welcome to the team!

The journey to retaining the house championship for a third year in a row began with the tutor noticeboard competition. Wonderfully, 8S2 got a special mention for the quality of their Stephenson eagles. Buoyed by this, Stephenson teams performed well in the hula-hooping contest, ping pong challenge and the Roald Dahl quiz.

In the last couple of weeks of term, the mighty red of Stephenson house really kicked into gear as we won the riddle me this competition and also took the points for this term's ethos contest for punctuality.

As an English teacher, my proudest moment of the term was when we took the title for accelerated reader quizzes in Years 7 and 8. It is a testament to our house’s resilience that you have already read over 4,500,000 words in one term. Well done and thank you! The combination of these feats means that Stephenson House finishes term one in pole position for th championship. 

Raising money for charity was also on our minds this term. We contributed to mental health awareness with Hello Yellow and had an amazing cake sale for the MacMillan coffee morning.

Without a doubt we will end the term on a high with the annual Year 10 v Year 11 football match. This has become a tradition as we mark Black History Month and unite behind the beautiful game.

I am deeply proud to be leading this group of students through their time at this school and I know that together we can achieve great things because through adversity comes progress.

Mr Court, Head of Stephenson House 

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  Turing House Update  

Unity, determination, and community spirit have always been essential ingredients for success, both academically and in the sporting arena. The analogy of Team Turing starting the school year with the same dedication as athletes in a relentless game is fitting. It encapsulates the energy,  determination and commitment required by every student, teacher and member of the house and school community.

As we welcome our new members of the house in 7T,  it is important to remember that their transition into a new environment can often be daunting and yet they have not only coped but have also excelled, showcasing a commendable approach to lessons and a strong sense of unity. Such an attitude in the nascent stages of their academic journey augurs well for the future.

It's also heartening to see older students embodying the spirit of empathy and support. Remembering their own apprehensions and challenges when they were in Year 7, they have taken it upon themselves to provide comfort and guidance to the newcomers. This not only highlights their maturity but also showcases the close-knit community spirit of St Katherine’s.

Turing House would also like to welcome our new 7T Turing Tutor, Mr Marks. The pastoral staff are repeatedly supported by the students who form the leadership team. It is with great pleasure that I introduce to you the amazing Turing Leadership Team:

  • House Leaders: Evie Roberts, George Wilkinson, Roary Gallagher
  • 10T1: Bella Norman
  • 10T2: Samuel Mwangi
  • 9T: Kelisa Palmer and Ohemam Gyimah-Sarpong
  • 8T1: Jaihan Singarda
  • 8T2: Nathan Pitt
  • 7T: Baptiste Herzog and Eesha Glen-Sawlani

The members of Turing House have once again risen to the challenges put to them and I always take great pleasure in celebrating the successes of Turing House members in the school newsletter. All of their achievements have been based on the house values and motto:

Turing Values: Determination, Acceptance, Unity

Turing Motto: “The strength of the team is each individual member, the strength of each member is the team”

Turing Spiritual Animal: The Wolf for loyalty, pathfinding, never ending journey and sense of family.

Congratulations to the students of Turing House for their commendable achievements! Praise points are a testament to hard work, dedication, and commitment, and it's clear that many of the students have demonstrated these qualities in spades.

Special commendation goes to the seven standout students who have truly gone above and beyond in their pursuits. Walter Rogers, in particular, deserves a round of applause for leading the pack and setting a high standard for his peers. His achievements are indicative of the effort and determination he has put into his studies and extracurricular activities.

Top praise earners in each Turing tutor group:

  • 7T: Sofia Mueller - 145 praises 
  • 8T1: Ziggy Gardner - 170 praises
  • 8T2: Walter Rogers - 222 praises
  • 9T: JEmily James - 199 praises
  • 10T1 : Leyton Jarrett- 127 praises
  • 10T2: Jackson Burbridge- 158 praises
  • 11T: Roary Gallagher - 128 praise

Another week, another round of applause for the stars of our house! The 'Tremendous Turing' accolade is not just a term we toss around lightly; it embodies dedication, hard work, commitment, and most importantly, the spirit of our house. This week, I am thrilled to bring attention to 42 outstanding members who have exemplified these qualities. Each individual has made significant strides, not just academically but in character and in the community, that merits this distinction.

  • 7T: Adele Lacey, Rahma Abdi Mohamed, Azumi Lucas, Fenton Burbridge, Reece Thompson and Millie Matthews
  • 8T1: Ziggy Gardner, Jaihan Singarda, Amelia Jay, Lili Solymosi, Leo Richardson and Lara Bray
  • 8T2: George Lange, Walter Rogers, Michal Spurrel, Aariz Zafar and Devon Davis
  • 9T: Kelisa Palmer, Alex Horseman, Karell Gillard-O'Donnell, Mabel Challice, Noah Roberts and Maddie Pasco
  • 10T1: Liam Davies, Edie Davidson, Bella Norman, Bo O'Callaghan, Leyton Jarrett and Rudy Gardner
  • 10T2: Joe Cook, Sam Mwangi, Bella Perales- Morris, Manon Herzog, Luke James and Buddy Estcourt
  • 11T: Alice Clarke, Olivia Stanley, Roary Gallagher, Evie Roberts, Lucas Matthews and Keir Sutton

The Magnificent Termly Turing award recognises and rewards students who exemplify the true values of Turing House and is a significantly powerful way to motivate and maintain a positive environment. Celebrating these individuals not only acknowledges their efforts and contributions but also sets an example for other students to emulate. Congratulations to the seven Magnificent Turings, on their achievement. It’s crucial that the efforts are recognised and that the positive behaviour of a few can lead to an uplifting effect on the whole community:

  • 7T - Reece Thompson - Reece has settled quickly and has had a great start at St Katherine's. He is eager, positive and goes out of his way to help anyone that may need it. He is an example of a caring member of the school community and gives 100% to both his subjects and the tutor-group.
  • 8T1 - Ziggy Gardner - Ziggy has had a fantastic first term in year 8 and has shown a positive attitude to learning. He continues to work hard in lessons and this is seen through the numerous praise postcards he receives. Keep up the great work.
  • 8T2 - George Hallford - George has had another great start to the school year. He has taken up his well deserved role as sports captain again this year and is giving 100% to all subjects. George always has a positive attitude and spirit!
  • 9T - Alex Horseman - For making a brilliant start to St Katherine's and settling in really well - Alex has set the bar high in his first term so I am looking forward to seeing him continue to work to the same high standards going forwards.
  • 10T1 - Bella Norman - Bella has made an excellent start to year 10! She has shown a huge improvement towards her attitude to learning and has gone above and beyond to involve herself in St Kath's community. We are very lucky to have you as our tutor rep this year and I can't wait to see what else you achieve!
  • 10T2 - Lucas Whitfield - Exceptional start to his GCSE courses, continuing where he left off from last year. Lucas has shown a real maturity to learn whilst still being Turing's Sports Captain which Lucas performs with exceptional leadership qualities.
  • 11T - Lucas Mtthews - Lucas has made a great start to Year 11. He is conscientious in his approach to lessons and is striving to achieve the very best he can. Lucas is also a great friend and champion of others; he is supportive in lessons to his peers. He genuinely wants them to achieve to the very best of their abilities. Lucas is a true role model to others and I know his hard work is going to pay off at the end of this year. 

Finally, I would like to turn my attention to the on-going House Competition. Turing House has enjoyed some success in the Inter- House Championship over recent years. However, last year saw Turing finish in a credible second place.

However, poor punctuality in Term 1 and Term 4 last year were the key elements that significantly dented our challenge for the top spot. This has been tested again this term with the first House Ethos Competition. Punctuality to school and lessons has been the focus and worth a substantial amount of house points. Despite the huge efforts of many Turing House members, Turing has already faltered, with a disappointing fourth place in this competition. As a house we have missed out on a valuable 150 points. This is so disappointing that a fraction of students have had such a significant impact on the overall house. As well as impacting Turing's position so early on in the House Championship, they have most importantly reduced their learning opportunities and therefore their overall attainment. These students will be spoken to and parents contacted by tutors and myself. I would like to recognise the 175 Turing students who lead the way for all by arriving on time to school and attending lessons on time. Well done to those of you that achieved this. For those that did not, punctuality is a basic expectation and important life skill and this must improve. 

There have been notable successes in other areas of the House Competition, particularly in the reading competitions: Accelerator Reader, Reading Logs and Bucket List. We, at St Katherine’s School, emphasise the importance of reading - improving vocabulary,  comprehension and developing critical thinking skills.  Therefore I want to make a special shout out to 8T1 and 8T2 for finishing first in the Reading Log, and 7T for coming second. Fantastic work!

The commitment and dedication that each individual shows towards their academic and co-curricular activities not only benefits them but also uplifts the entire school community. It's a collective effort where every contribution, no matter how small, plays a part in shaping the bigger picture.

In returning after the holidays, it's essential to hold onto the lessons learned in the past term and use them as stepping stones for the next. Whether it's academic pursuits, house competitions, or broader school objectives, growth and progression should be at the forefront of every endeavour.

So, to all members of the Turing House community: Relax and rejuvenate, but also look forward to the exciting opportunities that Term 2 will bring. The path to success is a continuous journey of learning, improving and striving for excellence. Enjoy your break, and come back with a renewed spirit and determination to achieve your goals!

Mrs Price, Head of Turing House

  Yousafzai House Update  

How it is the end of Term 1 already? I have no idea, it feels like yesterday when we were welcoming our new Year 7 students to St Katherine's. This has been a real highlight this year having 60 new students join Yousafzai House. Between the two tutor groups they have been passing the coveted elephant trophy for best tutor group back and forth. 

Assemblies have been some of my favourite moments this term. Seeing the whole house together and saying hello to each student as they come in is one the best bits of my week. We have been reflecting this term on how diamonds are made - that they are made under high pressure and heat. We have taken this and tried to apply it to our own lives - that we can welcome and push through our own ‘pressure and heat’ knowing that it is making us the best individuals that we can be. Each difficult thing we go through adds a facet to our character and makes us shine that little bit more. We continue to sing happy birthday to each other -  a massive shout out to Liam Hacker who is one of the loudest and most encouraging singers there is in the house! 

At the start of term our house council was voted for. There is a tutor representative from each tutor group joining our house leaders, Theeban and Mae, to help make the house as best as it can be. Our tutor representatives meet with Mrs Crocker each enrichment session to discuss important matters and make changes to the school. Both Theeban and Mae have done an excellent job at speaking to the house each week in assemblies. 

We would love Yousafzai to win the house championship this year. We have had some mixed progress in this and so currently sit in third position. One of our biggest achievements was winning the noticeboard competition. Each tutor group has personalised their tutor noticeboard - big shout out to 11Y1 who have added bunting to theirs! It is a brilliant way to show the important feeling that we belong to the house. We have had a good turn out to Fun Fix Friday competitions over the last few weeks which has been brilliant. Ollie Newman hula hooped for over 10 minutes - I thought I did well with 9 minutes! Our Year 7 students did an amazing job at representing and winning the Roald Dahl quiz - thank you! 

There are some areas for improvement. We have come third in the ethos competition of punctuality. This is a real shame as these competitions are awarded the highest number of points. All our Yousafzai students should be striving to be the best they can be which includes being on time to all lessons and engaging with the lesson. The ethos competition will be our main focus next term. Please do have conversations with your children about the importance of being the best they can be - and also winning the house competition. As parents of Yousafzai students - you too are in Yousafzai House! To look ahead to the coming terms, we need to ensure that our attendance and behaviour is the best it can be - particularly as these will be ethos competitions in the future. Our Year 7-9 students need to ensure they are completing their reading logs and quizzing their books and all students need to enter as many competitions as possible so that we can win as many points as possible! Our Year 9 have come second for their reading logs but Years 7 and 8 need to improve this next term.

I have said this a lot to the house this term in assemblies - I absolutely love being head of Yousafzai House and I am so thankful for each student who makes up the house. They are what make the house what it is. A big thank you to all parents and carers of Yousafzai students for your continued support. 

Have a lovely half term and let’s come back fighting for that house cup in Term 2! 

Miss Andrews, Head of Yousafzai House

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  PE and Sport News  

It has been a typically busy start to the academic year in PE with lots of opportunities for students to get involved with

  • We held our annual Sports Awards Evening which is now in its ninth year! It was lovely to celebrate with some of our brightest and best students, their families and their friends. My thanks to everyone involved and also to our special guest, Liz Johnson, who made the evening that extra bit special. 
  • It's been cup competitions galore with students in knockout action on the football and rugby pitches. Most of our cup action this term has been in the English Schools FA National Cup where our U13 boys and U14 girls are still in the draw and will contest matches after the half term holiday. At the time I am writing this update, the U15 boys are preparing for a trip down the M5 to Huish for their Somerset Cup rugby clash so we wish them well on their travels too. 
  • We've had students representing the school in football, short mat bowls, hockey, rugby, netball and basketball matches already this year with well over 200 students earning caps to add to their collection. It has been really lovely to see our youngest students making their school debuts so congratulations to all 45 of the students in Year 7 who have represented the school in term 1. A special mention to Year 8 who have the highest number of students who have represented the school so far this year.
  • Short mat bowls is still going strong at St Katherine's and in the final week of this term a team of players from St Katherine's will be taking on an Avon select team in their first competitive fixture of the school year. We have plans to widen our offer to the local community later this year and are looking forward to sharing those with you in due course.
  • Our students have been busy leading at a number of events already this year including the NSSPEA fun fitness, cross country and tag-rugby festivals. We have been overrun with students looking to make the most of the leadership opportunities that are on offer in PE and we've already had lots of students giving up a huge amount of their time to support opportunities for others. Special thanks to the hugely committed group of leaders who supported the school Open Evening in PE and then came into school on their INSET day the following morning to help with the primary fun fitness festival.
  • We have appointed 68 students to house sport leadership roles this term and we can't wait for them to get their houses going! The first house sport competitions of the year are due to kick start in the last week of term as students take to the cross country course in their masses. We're already excited to share all of the stories from those races including winners, no-doubt records, house triumphs and most importantly, stories of student personal bests of which I am sure there will be plenty!
  • We have also got some incredible stories of student sporting success to share with you in our term 1 newsletter including everything from rugby to BMX, football to cheerleading and dance to open water swimming! There are no ends to the talents that our students have! You can read about these stories plus all of the rest of the action from term 1 in our PE and School Sport newsletter. If you haven't already subscribed then fill in the form at this link and we'll do the rest!

Mr Cook, Head of PE

  Term 2 dates for your diary  
  • 30 October: INSET day
  • 31 October: Students in school for Term 2
  • 02 November: Year 8 trip to Education Programme Roadshow
  • 02 November: Sixth Form Open Evening -register here
  • 08 November: Year 8 Future Brunels
  • 13 November: Careers Fair, Trinity Academy
  • 15 November: Year 9 Virtual Progress Evening
  • 23 November: Coffee with the Head Teacher, 15.00-16.30
  • 29 November: Year 8 Virtual Progress Evening
  • 30 November: GCSE and A Level Art and Textiles trip to Bristol
  • 01 December: St Katherine's Festive Market
  • 05 December: Flu vaccinations
  • 06 December: Ski trip talk for parents/ carers, 17.30-18.30
  • 07 December: Sixth Form art trip to London
  • 12 December: Warner Brothers Studio Tour visit
  • 15 December: End of term 2. - Early finish buses leave 12.30pm
  • 12 December: Photography students tip to Warner Brothers Studios
  • 12 December: Photography students tip to Warner Brothers Studios
  • 12 December: Photography students tip to Warner Brothers Studios
  • 02 January: INSET day
  • 03 January: Students in school for Term 3
  We're looking to expand our team of exam invigilators  

We need examinations invigilators during exam seasons (including 'mocks') through the year. Hours are flexible between 8 am and 4 pm and can vary according to your availability and the examinations timetable. 

Contract: Casual, required as soon as possible.

Further information about the school, the post and how to apply can be found on the school website, please contact Mrs Bean, Exams Officer, with any queries.

St Katherine’s is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. The post is subject to DBS Barred list and Enhanced Disclosure checks.

  Keep in touch  

There isn’t enough space here to showcase the huge variety of student experiences and achievements this term. Keep up to date by visiting the ‘News and Events’ section on the school website, check the school Facebook page or follow us on Twitter (@stkathsschool)