December 2018 Newsletter
December 2018


Dear Parents/Carers

The autumn term is always the longest and demands great energy from us all as students get used to new teachers, systems and more challenging courses. I hope that you and your families find time to relax during the Christmas festivities to recharge your batteries ready for the spring term which, for students, begins on Monday 7th January 2019.

Ofsted
As you will be aware we were inspected by Ofsted at the end of October, many thanks for all of you who filled in the parent’s views feedback. Although the timing of the inspection was somewhat unexpected it was a very positive inspection and the inspectors were hugely impressed by our students, our teaching and our wonderful atmosphere where students thrive.

I am very proud to be the Principal of a College whose ambience and focus provided the inspection team with an experience that they described as ‘so rare’.

January pre public examination tests
During the spring term we continue to ensure that every Varndean College student
is successful in their academic life and in their future progression. Thank you for your ongoing support: it is vital to the success of everything we are doing in support of high ambition, individual achievement, and the development of good work habits. With this in mind we will be having an increased focus on punctuality and ensuring that the study habits students have continue to best support their success.

Many Year 2 students will be taking pre public examination tests in their classes to help them prepare for their final external examinations. For most Year 2 students, these will take place over 2 weeks beginning 21st January.

PARENT GOVERNOR VACANCIES
There are two Parent Governor vacancies on Varndean College's Governing Body (the Corporation). Earlier in November, we informed all Parents/Carers about this and invited nominations from interested parents.  Unfortunately we did not receive any responses by the deadline. If you would be interested in becoming a Parent Governor, please contact Louise Pennington (Governance Director and Clerk to the Corporation) on lep@varndean.ac.uk  to discuss the role.

Autumn Update
Please see the latest copy of our Update here.

For an update on our capital developments please click here

A few reminders:
Absence Procedures:
Students or parents are expected to inform the College if they are unable to attend on the first day of absence and on any subsequent day of absence. The College should be contacted by 10am. Notifications received after this time will not be registered and absences will remain unauthorised.

The College can be contacted in the following ways:
Contacts for absence (this can be done by students or parent/carers)
Tel:         01273 546645    (telephone calls only - texts to this number are not recognised)
Text:       07537 402048
Email:     registry@varndean.ac.uk
Parents/Carers are informed by email of absences, whether or not we have been notified of the absence.
 
Parent Portal
In addition to real time attendance, our Parent Portal provides access to the report card and a day by day account of what is happening in the student’s academic life through ‘Collective’. You can register using your unique login through our website or request help from the IT team from the same page.

Email
Over 90% of parents and carers now receive communications from us by email and we would prefer to use email for all our communications: it is more reliable, faster, cheaper and greener; if you are still receiving this as a hard copy and would like us to use email please respond to Briony Velloms-Hodgson  bbg@varndean.ac.uk

Dates for Your Diary
I have attached an updated list of important dates for the year, including term dates (click here).

And finally
On behalf of the College I should like to wish you all a happy festive season and a peaceful new year.

Yours faithfully
Phil Harland
Principal
©2019 Varndean College, Brighton, United Kingdom

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