Principal's Letter - 26th May 2023

Date Published:
Friday 26 May 2023

Dear Parents/Carers,

The sun has been shining this week and the summer term has been going extremely well at Jesmond Park Academy.  This is the busiest time of year for schools as they help navigate Year 11 and Year 13 students through their final examinations, but I would like to take the time to say how fantastically our students are responding. Year 11 are extremely focussed and the attendance at all of the warm up sessions has been impressive. Year 13 are also really determined and they are coping extremely well with their final exam season at the school.  It is still early in the exam season, but we remain very optimistic for them in their forthcoming examinations and are proud of their efforts! 

Year 11 Notices

Mr Mason has written to all Year 11 students and parents/carers this week with final information regarding ongoing support, leavers’ events and GCSE results day. Parents/carers have received this via email and there is a copy on our school website. A number of our students have been invited to May half term revision sessions and we would strongly encourage our Year 11 students to attend.

We are not allowing ‘study leave’ until Wednesday 14th June once the majority of the exams have taken place and I know that many parents have written to us supporting the fact that we are supporting students with full time lessons right up until they have sat the overwhelming majority of their exams and from then we still have compulsory ‘in school’ warm up sessions before each remaining exam. An electronic copy of our examination support overview can still be found on our website.  There is light at the end of the tunnel for our Year 11 students with their final Leavers’ Assembly on Thursday 22nd June and their Leavers’ Prom on Friday 23rd June. Full uniform is required for the Leaving Assembly so please do not discard or donate this until after this event. As Mr Mason has said in his letter to Year 11 students, as we reach the half way point of the GCSE exams; ‘now is the time that our Year 11 students can pause briefly, plan productive revision time over the half term break and most importantly take time away from study to be with family and friends for fun and relaxation. We look forward to welcoming our students back refreshed and ready for the final challenge of the remaining GCSE examinations on Monday 5th June’.

Year 10 Notices

Following on from Monday night’s online event, “How to Support Your Child through the Year 10 Examinations” we will publish a recording of this and the slides on our website.

Year 10 Mocks are scheduled for the two weeks beginning Monday 19th and Tuesday 27th June (Monday 26th June is a Training Day and no students are in school).  Prior to this, all Year 10 students will have three compulsory guided revision sessions per week for the first two weeks after half term. Your child will be issued with the exam schedule and revision topic lists before leaving school for half term. Please help them to get the right balance of productive work time and time for their friends, families and hobbies. The year group has already been spoken to about this in assembly.

Year 13 Notices

There is no study leave for Year 13 students. They are expected to attend as many lessons as they can until they have had their final exam in each subject. Year 13 students are looking forward to their Leavers’ Assembly on Wednesday 28th June, where they will have a final get together in school with their friends and school staff. It is always a lovely event. Then their final hurrah to Jesmond Park Academy will be their Leavers’ Ball which will be a wonderful celebration of friendship and their time in Sixth Form.

Child on Child Abuse

It is important to recognise that abuse isn’t always perpetrated by adults; children can abuse other children too. This is referred to as child-on-child abuse and can include:

•          Bullying (including online/cyberbullying)

•          Sexual violence and sexual harassment (including online)

•          Physical abuse (such as hitting, kicking, shaking, biting etc.)

•          ‘Sexting’ (also known as ‘youth produced/involved sexual imagery’ or sharing ‘nude or semi-nude’ imagery)

•          Initiations, hazing type violence and social rituals

You can be assured that Jesmond Park Academy will not tolerate any form of child on child abuse. This behaviour will never be normalised, and will always be challenged. Issues such as these are addressed through our pastoral programme and within curriculum areas such as Citizenship (Key Stage 3) and Personal Development (Key Stage 4).  The pastoral programme and our curriculum equips pupils with the knowledge and understanding of what is right and wrong, how to keep themselves safe and how to report incidents.  Our staff have been trained to a high standard by providers such as the NSPCC, to identify these types of behaviours and to support students who are the victim of these behaviours.

If you believe your child to be a victim of peer on peer abuse please contact the school and ask to speak to Mr Aitken who is the Designated Safeguarding Lead in school or one of the pastoral members of staff.

After a report is made, the safeguarding leads will inform you of the next part of the process so that you can make the decision that is right for you and your child. This may include the school sanctioning students for inappropriate behaviour and working with local safeguarding partners to support students within school.  Child on child abuse incidents are very rare in school due to our robust systems and procedures, however, it is important that we signpost parents to where they can find support if they need it.

Online safety

Whilst there are huge benefits to being online many parents may feel concerned about the activities and content their children are accessing. We know that parents and carers have worries about their children accessing the internet.  There are some simple steps and key resources available to parents and carers which will help keep children safe from different risks online.

The following information includes links to additional advice and guidance.

1.         Do some research – the Internet is an amazing resource; however it can also pose a number of risks.  There are useful websites that will help you understand the risks and how to reduce the chances of your child being exposed to risky online content. Use the website, which is a very useful resource.

2.         If you do become worried about something specific or want to know more about your child’s ‘online life’, have a calm and open conversation in an honest and supportive way. Talk about what your child loves about using the Internet.  It is important to have regular conversations about staying safe online and to encourage children to speak to you if they come across something worrying online. The website has further information for parents and carers.

3.         If you continue to have concerns, the following websites give guidance for parents and carers to keep children safe online. They will, amongst other things, support you to talk to your child about a range of online safety issues, set up home filtering in a child-friendly way and set up age-appropriate parental controls on digital devices.  Check out which has a wealth of advice for parent and carers.  There is also information at relating to online safety.


We continue to emphasise the importance of reading with our students and staff as it continues to be widely shown that students who read more widely will do better at school.  This year, we have managed to gift free books to our Year 7 and 8 students to encourage them in their reading endeavours.  Moreover, we have promoted a broad culture of reading in the school by creating reading zones across all departments in the school, thus broadening access to good quality, subject specific, fiction and non-fiction. We would welcome any donations from parents and students to achieve our aims. Mrs Henderson, our Reading Leader, is happy to collect them from reception or if students bring donations directly to her. They will be rewarded with PRAISE stamps for every book donated. It's worth remembering that students who read 20 minutes per day will be exposed to 2 million words a year more than a non-reader which will make a significant impact on how well they will do at school.

Our aim is to make sure students develop a love of reading that will last into later life.

School uniform supplier for Gosforth Group schools

We have already written to you regarding our change of uniform supplier, but I wanted to repeat the message.  Following a procurement process (in compliance with the Education (Guidance about Cost of School Uniforms Act 2021), from 5th June 2023, all academies within the Gosforth Group will move to a single uniform supplier, Michael Sehgal & Sons Ltd. However, with immediate effect, uniform items can be viewed and purchased by visiting the Michael Sehgal & Sons Ltd website.

Michael Sehgal & Sons Ltd will stock and sell all branded uniform items including PE/sportswear and the school rain jacket and outdoor fleece. Non-branded school approved style uniform items can also be purchased from Michael Sehgal & Sons Ltd. However, parents/carers still have the option to buy these non-branded items from other retailers as long as they meet our uniform policy criteria.

Michael Sehgal & Sons Ltd are based in Kingston Park, near to Tesco Extra, and offer an in-store measuring service (by appointment only), or if the size required is known, orders may be placed by telephone or via their website. They recommend that orders are placed before 31st July 2023 to guarantee delivery before the start of the new term.

Supplier details:

Michael Sehgal & Sons Ltd

Unit 17 Airport Industrial Estate

Kingston Park

Newcastle upon Tyne


Tel: 0191 230 2320

I would like to stress that the uniform remains the same, so items purchased from the old supplier are absolutely fine.

Work Experience

The majority of our Year 10 students have been able to successfully secure a work experience placement for work experience week. For those students who have not, attendance to school in work experience week is compulsory as normal and we are holding ‘in school’ work related learning activities for those students. Mr Holmes will write to parents/carers with further details of this after the half term break.

For our parents/carers of students in Year 9, it is not too early to start thinking about work experience for when they are in Year 10. Although we have not finalised our calendar for next year yet, it is likely to take place in our penultimate week of the summer term 2024.  We will be launching work experience to our new Year 10 students at the end of September 2023. For the majority of our Year 10 students, we will be asking for parent/carer support in finding their child a work experience placement. In terms of health & safety, we work with an external company who will be able to approve the placements. 


Please click on this link ( to be taken to our enrichment programme for the summer term.  We currently have over 630 students attending enrichment activities across the school each day, which is fantastic.  The purpose of enrichment activities is to provide students with the opportunity to study concepts with greater depth, breadth and complexity, while also helping students to pursue their own areas of interest and strengths.  If your child has not taken part before, why not encourage them to start this summer!  This is the first year in a long time that we will be taking part in competitive cricket matches. Our under 15 cricket enrichment group will be undertaking their first competitive matches against other schools at the ‘University Medicals’ cricket ground in Heaton after half term against the like of St. Mary’s, Wickham and Emmanuel College.  We will be introducing cricket for the younger year groups after half term.

On the note of enrichment, I wanted to take one chance to promote our summer performances:  

These include:

Tuesday 27th June – Shakespeare in School performance @ The Peoples Theatre.  Our talented students will be performing a modern take on Macbeth.  Tickets can be purchased directly from the theatre.

Thursday 29th June – Musical Showcase @ JPA.  Last year we had more than 100 students performing and this year promises to be even bigger and better.

Tuesday 18th July – Matilda @ JPA. A performance based on the Roald Dahl book Matilda which is turning out to be an amazing collaboration between Dance and Drama.

If your children are participating in these events then please come and support them and be amazed at their talent!

I hope you have a relaxing and enjoyable half term break.


Yours faithfully,