News, Messages & Stars from John & the PHS Team Friday 28th April

Welcome to Percy Hedley School's Whole School Blog!

Hi everyone

How’s it all going for you? Hope it’s been a good week for you. It has been here, with some great things like Careers Visits and other trips out, sports activities, and some great lessons all over the school. There are of course some pretty special STARs nominated, some dates for your diary starting to come in, and some quite amazing results – from you! All this plus the usual things, so please do have a read if you have time and I hope there’s a bit of it that you enjoy

Now, on Friday, we’re going to have a special lunch for the coronation. It’s the sort of thing that the kitchen and staff put on so well together, and those kinds of things are lovely here! If your children want to wear red, white and blue, that’s great, but no pressure at all, and certainly don’t buy anything new! From my point of view, I always want us to be doing what the rest of the country is in terms of celebrations, British Values and things like that, so I like it when we celebrate everything!

Have a lovely weekend and thanks for all your support. Take care


😊 …from John & the PHS Team 😊

Look after yourselves and each other……😉


Personal Development

I thought I should put this letter from Jo in again as it’s such an important topic. Have a read

As a part of your child’s education at Percy Hedley School, we promote personal wellbeing and development through a comprehensive Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) education program. PSHE education is the curriculum subject that gives young people the knowledge, understanding, attitudes and practical skills to live safe, healthy, productive lives and meet their full potential.

I would like to let you know that, over the next term, students will be taking part in lessons which will focus on ‘Puberty’ as part of statutory Health Education, across primary and secondary. The Department for Education are recommending that students are taught about puberty within mixed gender classes, as everyone needs to know about everything with an aim of removing stigmas, prejudice, and misconceptions. Ground rules will be in place to support the safety and wellbeing of students, ensuring no personal experiences or questions are discussed, however there will be anonymous question boxes available

PSHE education is taught throughout the school in every year group and is monitored and reviewed regularly by the staff and governing body. Please visit the school’s website to view our RSHE policy . All PSHE teaching will take place in a safe learning environment and is underpinned by our school ethos and values. I will be attending pathway coffee afternoons so you can find out more about what your child will learn, view the materials and resources being used in lessons and discover how you can best support your child to discuss these topics at home. As a school community, we are committed to working in partnership with parents; recent parental feedback has indicated that the overwhelming majority of parents continue to be highly supportive of the relationships, health and sex education program. If you would like to find out more or discuss any concerns, please email or call me. I look forward to seeing you at the coffee afternoons!

Jo Ferguson, Personal Development & PSHE Lead           0191 216 1811



Hello from The Leading Parent Partnership Award  (LPPA) team

Thank you to everyone who completed the communication questionnaire either online or hard copy.  Here is what you have told us:

  • You value regular progress updates and communication from all professionals who work with your child
  • You have let us know how you would like us to communicate with you
  • You find the school & PTA blogs a useful source of information
  • You have also given us some great points on how we can further develop the way in which we communicate with you and we will be working on this during this term
  • We are also going to provide you with a yearly calendar of events for the new academic year

Thank you in advance for your support.  We will keep you updated of any developments

Tracy and the LPPA team


Excellent! Thanks to the LPPA Team – this is really important stuff

Also I wanted to thank every single one of you who has responded to our questionnaires about Key Drivers and various questions. The results were really quite overwhelming. An amazing 90% of you fed back. And in all the key areas you gave us very clear feedback on how happy and safe you feel your children are; how you feel complaints are responded to; and if you feel your child is making progress. We have a long way to go, of course, and we have a lot to learn and improve still – I’m pretty sure we always will – but it is very special to have such feedback from so many of you. Thanks again


Outdoor Learning! Our Favourite!

On Monday and Tuesday of this week we were fortunate to have 12 volunteers from Virgin Media join us to help create an accessible allotment space in the outdoor learning area.  They made short work shifting nearly 30 tonnes of rubble and soil and laying a hard foundation for the wheelchairs to travel on.  They’re back a few weeks construct some planters for the new allotment area and hopefully plant some plants! This new space will really add to the outdoor learning area and be a great resource for the students to access for years to come. It’s great to have friends!


The draft policy is on the website, so do please have a look at it when you can. One of the main differences in terms of attendance across the country now is that fewer requests for absence are going to be authorised, most often when they are for simple holidays. The reason I’ve been mentioning this and other related matters in the blog each week for a while now is so that everyone understands why we are making changes to our procedures. We work with the Attendance Officer from North Tyneside, who meets some parents about this. We have to follow the same rules as everyone else in the country, and we have more “Persistent Absentees” than others, so we need to work hard with any of our pupils who have attendance figures of below 90%. We’d very much like to thank you all at home for your understanding and co-operation with what I completely understand to be a difficult and sensitive area. Ultimately we just want our school to be a safe, happy place where our pupils make progress and attend as much as they possibly can. Thanks again

Reading & Literacy

Let’s hear it from The Squad

With Personal Development week happening just before the Easter Holidays, and all of the wonderful reading that was taking place alongside it it seemed like a brilliant opportunity for students and staff to display our love of reading!

Have a look at the photos and check out the displays created across the school.

We particularly love the Bookflix display. Showing off all of the books that each of the ELTBA classes have been reading. (I especially agree with Abi in 2RC’s recommendation of Hugless Douglas)

Another display shows some of the different reading and writing events that we’ve taken part in so far this year. Some avid blog readers might remember the Poetree and the Jolabokaflod (Christmas Book Flood)

Those eagle-eyed observers might spot that there is room on the displays for more. And it’s a good thing too, because there’s plenty more to come in the world of reading

Thank you to the students and staff who helped put these displays together and continue to celebrate reading in all its forms.

The Literacy Squad

Thanks to Abi and The Literacy Squad….Love of Reading is the best thing!


Trip of the Week – Kingfishers out and about!

This is from Hannah!

Kingfishers have been out and about in the local community, getting the shopping in!  We like nothing more than a walk up to the shops to see what’s on offer.  Some of us like to take a shopping list and look for what we need to buy and some of us just enjoy browsing.  We can practise our communication skills by smiling and looking at the people in the shops, and using our VOCAs to ask for what we would like.  We like to scan our items at the checkout and pay with our money.  Sometimes there is an unexpected item in the bagging area!  When we have finished shopping, we sometimes have time to go to the café, or the library to choose some books to bring back to share at school


Lovely stuff, Woodpeckers!


Lesson of the Week – Careers! One of the very best!

This sort of thing is extremely important to us


A whopping 55 students from KS4 and post-16 attended the Future Focus Event at The Parks, North Shields this Thursday. They got to talk to a lot of training providers, volunteering opportunities, colleges and some prospective employers. Nikhit said, “It was really good. I learnt a lot about the options available to me.” All of the students enjoyed their time there. Here are some pictures of the event:


Stars of the Week!


That reflect our School Values!

The ELTBA star of the week goes to …


 Evan has shown fantastic resilience this week. He swam a few lengths in the larger pool at Lakeside AND jumped in at the deep end. Great work Evan! STAR!!!!!


ENGAGEMENT STAR!!! of the Week!

 It’s Jay from Woodpeckers!



Jay has been demonstrating such consistent communication across the curriculum, using his voice, his body language and his VOCA.

He initiates interactions (with staff and his friends!) all the time and is always keen to be first at any activity, giving his all in whatever he does. And he does it all with the biggest of smiles!

His determination to do well is fantastic – he is totally amazing and a massive STAR!




Andrew for using strategies to help himself stay calm when things get tricky


Callum for being a great team player in his class by being positive and cheering up his peers

Brian for helping ask if his friends need any of their specialist equipment for their lessons and then finding it for them


Noah and Jak for thinking about ways of keeping a member of their staff team Donna safe



Here they are…….

……and there some great ones! Some really good stuff here!



For being incredibly resilient and dealing with changes in a mature and sensible way


For being respectful and answering questions in class


Has been very resilient and worked so well in ELS


For being very resilient and dealing with difficult situations


THERAPY STAR of the Week!


It’s Joseph!

Out on his bike for his MOVE session!

Well done, Joseph – a complete Therapy STAR!!!!!!!!!!!


St George’s Day lunch!

Our fabulous catering team have been at it again with a lovely spread for our celebrations, this time for St George’s Day. Some lovely traditional dishes for everyone to enjoy! The children (and staff!) enjoy these days and as usual Mark has taken some great pictures! Have a look!

Mm-hmm….fish & chips! And trifle! Yum



Duke of Edinburgh First Aid

This week, the KS4 Duke of Edinburgh students and some special guests had some first aid training courtesy of a free St John’s course. They learnt how to check a casualty, put them in to the recovery position, perform CPR, deal with bleeding and about mental health. They all seemed to get a lot out of the session


PE stuff! Of course!

This week in PE, the Tuesday KS4 group took part in a carousel of activities. The activities were aimed at a range of core skills, including accuracy and balance. The students were free to decide which of the activities that they wanted to participate in. Here are a couple of quotes from the students:

Nikhit: The best bit was table tennis

Faith: The bowling was good because I enjoyed rolling the ball

Lovely stuff, and here are a few pictures to show all of that

Prom #2! And we’re 70!

This year’s Prom will be a combined celebration of our 70th birthday celebrations as well as celebrating our leavers and achievers. Formal invitations and further information will be winging their way to all upper school students to allow for us to have RSVPs well enough in advance to book tables and buffet for the right number of students. It will be a great night, and anyone who attended last year’s Prom will agree how much fun the students had! Any questions please contact Rebecca at


Makaton Signs of the Week

And perhaps with the arrival of spring the theme of the week is Gardens and Parks, with the key vocabulary being:

Garden, park, flower, tree, plant, gardening, garden centre



A plant

A flower

A tree


Centre Garden


Keep signing everyone!


Dates for the diary!

Coffee & Catch-up afternoons with Kasia, Sarah, Rebecca and Claire!

These are terrific! Please do come along!

  • The ELTBA Coffee & Catch-up morning is planned for Monday May 22nd2-3pm
  • The Engagement one is on Tuesday from 2.15 – 3
  • Post-16 on the Wednesday
  • KS4 on the Thursday


There’ll be loads of stands with exciting, interesting and relevant things on them, and the staff will all be there! There are letters about them, and Eileen also mentions them on her blog

These are great, and really important for keeping in touch. Please do come along if you at all can

All the very best to all of you at home, from all of us here at the school – we’re pushing on now with the second half of the school year, with the weather getting a bit better as well, and hopefully seeing you here some time at Consultation Evenings, Coffee & Catch-up afternoons, or other funky events



from John & the Team here at PHS


*** look after yourselves and each other ***