I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Happy Christmas and prosperous New Year.

It has been a busy half term at CCHS since my last article, with staff and students focused on working hard to be the best that they can be.  We have had a number of highlights, one of which was when the whole school community came together on the 10 November to hear the last post and observe a two minute silence to collectively pay our respects. 

On the previous day, Year 7 and Year 8 were honoured to take part in a Remembrance Assembly presented by the Mercian Regiment, returning to CCHS for the second year.

On Remembrance Sunday we were the only school who took part in the parade in Cannock to lay a wreath both in town and at the service at St. Luke's Church. 

I am also continuously impressed by the way in which our students come together to support those who are less fortunate than ourselves, particularly evident by our harvest festival service which led to a significant donation of food to our local food bank and, this week, Christmas jumper day where we have raised over £900 for the Scope charity.  Our harvest festival service was conducted by the Rev. Hart, for the last time, and I would like to publicly thank him for all of his support for our school and the Cannock community and wish him well as he heads over to his new parish.

In lessons, staff have worked hard to understand the requirements of the new GCSE specifications and fully prepare our Year 11s for the new 9-1 grading system, although they do have an advantage over most of the country as all students have already sat their GCSE English and Maths, which they will resit next summer and, therefore, have a real experience of how the exam will feel. This will obviously negatively affect the school in the performance tables, as their first entry will count, but we continue to do what we feel is best for our young people and having more than one go at a key exam that can affect their future is an important belief that we hold dear.

Our younger students have also embraced our core values: Integrity, Teamwork, Responsibility, Excellence and Resilience.  We are having a real focus on resilience and an emphasis on the key word of 'yet', and that perseverance at something that is hard will be an essential value of a successful adult in any occupation. Therefore, when we get 'stuck' in any lesson or element of life we don't quit, but work out how we can resolve or move forward. I am immensely proud of how keen all of our young people are to be the best that they can be in all that they do.

Obviously, the last week has been exceptionally challenging with the adverse weather conditions that has seen the school closed for two days and the cancellation of both our Christmas Concert and Carol Concert. However, the manner in which Team CCHS have pulled together to clear the site and support each other as we try to operate as close to normality as possible has been exceptional. We have fostered a real team spirit in which everyone - students, staff, parents and governors - work together to support one another in our goal of achievement for all.  It may not be in the right order but, whilst looking forward to a relaxing and enjoyable family Christmas, I am excited about what else, other than our Carol Concert in January, the New Year will bring. 

I Turnbull