Dear Parents, Guardians, and Friends,

At long last it seems as though Autumn has arrived, there was a definite chill in the air yesterday, not long followed by torrential rainfall that I think signifies the start of a change to cooler weather spell. As always at this time of year we celebrate the harvest festival at school.

Once again students bought in a vast array of food as well as specific items requested by the Wokingham Food Bank. As you can see from the pictures below everyone was very generous and there was plenty for our Year 11 students to deliver to the local community, a tradition that has continued for many years now. In total we delivered harvest boxes to 95 households and took 3 carloads of donations to Wokingham Food Bank and Wade. A great effort!

As well as sharing information about harvest the theme of the assembly was COP26, the climate change conference that is due to happen in Glasgow in November. This was reflected in the House harvest display competition when each House was allocated a country and needed to display the progress that that nation had made towards achieving their climate goals. The top 4 are pictured below.

1st Lacemakers
2nd Tanners
3rd Goldsmiths
4th Haberdashers


Climate Change is an important topic and will be our Global Learning Focus for 2021-22, so I hope that everyone will be able to learn more about climate change and get involved with a climate action project during the school year.

In addition to harvest most of the extracurricular clubs are now up and running, I thought I would focus on a few here. It is never too late to join!

Miss McNally writes that – “Geography Club has been really popular so far! We did a quiz on the first session, about landmarks, countries and geographical facts. We have now started students on their big project for this half term, where they are designing a country and they are going to present them to the geography prefects in a few weeks’ time.”

In History, Miss Howard said – “History Club are going to be building their own model version of ancient Rome. We are currently studying Rome and the Romans in lessons for Year 7 so they’re going to use this and their own research to do so. The club started last week, and they are currently researching what they might want to include in their model. The girls made a very good point that they should choose a century during Roman rule (as there were so many and a lot of changes!) so they have chosen the 1st century AD. They also said that their research showed images of the colosseum in ruins, but that at that time it wouldn’t have been ruins so they are trying to find images of it in its original form. It is very exciting!”

In addition, in humanities, Dr Barwah is running a Business Club for Year 10 and a debating club for Year 12 Economics students and a student-led mythology club is going strong, this week asking, ‘what makes a hero?’.

Esther Lamey, a Year 11 student has set up a club she says – “The board games and social club is a student led club where anybody can come to join in group board games or card games. It is a great way of building relationships between forms and years and is open to all. It is currently being run in M1 on Monday and Tuesday lunchtimes.”

There are of course many others to choose from!

It is always great to hear from ex Holt students and Ms Kostaki has invited some in to talk to students about their STEM careers, thanks go to Maisie Murphy last week who talked about midwifery and Niamh McCarville is going to share her experiences as a medical doctor.

There are also many one-off events to keep us busy – Year 7s were able to attend a biology week microscope activity at lunch time today and Year 9s had a virtual visit from author Simon James Green who was answering questions that The Holt students had asked.

We encourage all students to do at least one extracurricular activity, there are so many to choose from I am sure there is something for everyone to enjoy. I suggest that a planner is an essential piece of equipment so that students can keep track of all the opportunities available!

Yvonne Smith
Assistant Headteacher