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Cotham School

0117 919 8000

Weekly Mailing - Friday 26 April

Dear Parents and Carers

I trust that you all had an enjoyable Easter.

Please find below this week’s important information for Parents/Carers and Students as well as updates on School events, activities and opportunities for your reference.

Ms Jo Butler



Important Information for Parents/Carers


A reminder that the remaining school INSET days for this year are as follows:
Friday 5 April
Wednesday 10 July
The School will be closed to students for staff training on these dates.

Important- Our Mobile Phone Policy

Mobile phones and teenage mental health
Over the last few weeks there has been much media coverage about the topic of ‘students and their mobile phones in school’ and whether they should be banned completely.  There have also been articles on the dangerous effect that social media, mostly accessed by mobile phones, can have on young people's’ mental health with a number of very sad personal stories.
The Department for Education (DfE) has also raised concerns.  Damian Hinds, Education Secretary, has said that it should be down to individual Headteachers to set their own mobile phone policy although the DfE would support any school which did choose to ban student mobile phones.
At Cotham School we firmly believe that mobile phones, whilst  a really useful addition to modern life, can be detrimental to students learning, relationships and mental health and that they are not needed in school. We believe that young people should be learning and socialising in school without the pressures and distractions of mobiles.
However, we have adopted a sensible policy which we expect all students in Years 7-11 to comply with and parents and carers to support us with.
From the sound of first bell at 8.35a.m. until last bell at 3.05p.m. phones must be switched off (not on silent mode) and kept in students' school bags (not pockets)

  • Phones must not be used for any purpose (e.g. phoning, texting, surfing the internet, taking photos, taking films, listening to music) during the school day
  • Phones must not be taken into examinations.
  • If a student breaches these rules and they are seen by a member of staff:
  • The phone will be confiscated and placed in a safe at Student Reception.
  • The phone will be returned to the student’s parents or carers the following day.  It will need to be collected from Student Reception, no earlier than the end of the school day.
  • If a student persistently has a phone confiscated, the period for which it is retained will be extended, at the discretion of a member of the Senior Leadership Team.

We can make no exceptions to these rules.
The school accepts no responsibility or liability whatsoever, for theft, loss or damage to mobile phones. It is the responsibility of parents, carers and students to ensure mobile phones are properly insured.


Online Safety Newsletter: April 2019

Click here to view April’s Newsletter.


Free School Meals

Please click here to check if your child is eligible for Free School Meals or to apply.


GWR Student Rail Ticketing Scheme

We would like to remind parents/carers that Severnside Community Rail Partnership are continuing the Student Rail Ticketing Scheme in 2019. This partnership offers our students and families a huge saving on rail travel to and from the school on the Severnside Community Rail. An annual ticket costs £40.00 or families can buy their ticket in instalments. All the details are contained in the letter and application form here.

Free School Meals


School Uniform

Our Parent/Carer Committee are always looking for volunteers to sell Uniform on Parents Evenings and afterschool on the first Friday of every Term, if you can spare a few hours please contact Main Reception.


Lost Property

We have a display of Lost Property mainly jackets/coats in Student Reception, Cotham Road, with the better weather on it's way (we hope!) any items not claimed during the first 2 weeks of the new term will be donated to the Sigma House textile collection and the money donated to their House Charity.  Parents/Carers please feel free to come up during Student Reception opening hours to look through the Lost Property rail.


Library Books

If your child is feeling anxious about exams then there are books available in the library which provide coping mechanisms. Click here to find out more.


Inter House Competition - Design a Recycled Bottle Sculpture

Cotham School are taking part in a competition where students are asked to design a sculpture made from disposable water bottles, all students need to do is design a sculpture that connects people with the issue of marine plastic pollution
Students can paint, draw or event construct their design, but it should connect people to the issue, their actions and the oceans. Designs could say something about the problem of waste plastics, or the environmental impact, it could show a solution or highlight the statistics. The choice is up to the designer!

We are asking students to send a picture of their sculpture design in an email- they can draw it, design it in a computer package or even build it themselves. We need to make sure that their pictures are clear and annotated if necessary.
Please send  entries to Mrs Arnold

There are prizes for the top 5 entries and the overall winner will be Cotham Schools entry into a National Competition sponsored by Robeco in partnership with City to Sea.

The National Competition Prizes are as follows; the winning sculpture will be built and displayed in the City of London during plastic free July, a water fountain for your school or location of choice and a £1000 donation to a school project to improve the environment at the school.

Closing date for entries is Friday 26 April.


Word of the week

Each week at Cotham we promote a Word of the Week. This is to help students expand the range of vocabulary they use. Please find the word for the week ahead by clicking here.


Staff Vacancies

Cotham School are currently recruiting new members of staff to work with us at the school. We are currently looking to hire a Maths Teacher and 3 x Learning Co-Ordinators at Cotham School.


For more information about school roles please click here.

Key Stage 4 News


Year 11


Well done to all our Yr. 11 students who came along to Easter revision sessions. Classes were well attended and the time productive. We were impressed by all the students’ excellent work ethic and commitment to doing their best.


German Speaking Exams

Speaking exams for students studying German take place next week. All exams take place at Charnwood House Post 16 Centre. Please remind your child to check their time and arrive 5 minutes before the exam is due to start. Good luck to all our German speakers.


English Revision

The timetable for English Twilight Open Door Revision for Term 5 is now available. Please click here to view the timetable.


GCSE Summer Exam Timetables

Individual GCSE Summer Exam Timetables have now been issued to students. These show the dates and times of all their summer examinations. A further timetable will follow shortly with their final tiers of entry and seating information.



The final GCSE exam is due to take place on Wednesday 19 June. However, the Joint Council for Qualifications have stipulated that all students must be available to sit exams until Wednesday 26 June.  This is to ensure that any GCSE exams which may have to be cancelled as a result of a national emergency or disaster can be rescheduled.  Please bear this date in mind if you are planning on booking a holiday for your child or your family.  


Essential Examination Equipment

Your child will be more successful in their summer exams if they have the correct equipment. Please support them by purchasing any missing items over the next month:  

  1. Clear pencil case, black

  2. Pens x2, pencils x2, eraser, sharpener, ruler, protractor, compass,
    highlighter, working non-programmable scientific calculator (preferably Casio).

  3. Students taking examinations in Design and Technology will also need coloured pencils.

  4. Students should have calculators with them for Maths, Science, DT, Geography, Psychology, and Preparation for Working Life.


Supporting your child’s revision

With just a few weeks left until final GCSE examinations begin, students’ revision preparations should be well underway.

If you are worried that your child is not revising enough at home then the following may be helpful resources:


  • Support your child in preparing a summer exam preparation schedule so that they complete revision tasks - a template revision schedule can be found here   

  • Ensure that all homework assignments are completed

  • Ensure your child has revision guides that can help to support their learning - a list of these is enclosed and attached here along with details of useful revision websites for each subject

  • Read and discuss the Examination Command Words document attached here with your child

  • See the Top Tips for Parents sheet attached here which contains useful reminders about ‘what to do’ and ‘what not to do’

  • Year 11 November mock exams can be accessed here.  There is value in students re-completing these and demonstrating that they can recall knowledge previously assessed, and act on feedback already given to them to improve their original raw mark.  Our school challenge is for all students to increase their recent mock exam result by 10 or 15 or 20 marks over the February Revision week break. 

  • Use the Subject ‘to do’ sheets which highlight the type of acts that students should be completing as part of their revision


Student Well-being

Maintaining a healthy diet, getting plenty of sleep, taking regular exercise and making time for relaxation will all help your child manage the demands of GCSE revision and the exam season. See some top tips on how to help your child ‘prepare to perform’ here

Study Leave and Leavers Arrangements

The final day of school for Year 11 students will be Friday 17 May. Lessons will continue as normal up until this date, after which students will only attend school to sit their remaining exams and attend subject
revision sessions (details of which will be communicated in May). Students must continue to wear full school uniform, including their lanyard, whenever they are on the school site.
Our Year 11 Leavers’ Assembly will be held on Friday 14 June, following the morning’s physics exam.  The assembly will finish before 1pm and all Year 11 will leave the school by that time. We ask that students return
all textbooks to the library prior to the Leavers’ Assembly.

Year 11 Prom
Final few tickets remaining - Payment can be made by Wisepay under General Payments or by cash at the office. Please click here for the letter that must be be signed in order for your child to attend. Paper copies are available at Student reception.

                                            Post-16 News

Year 12 Mock Exams

Year 12 mock exams start the week beginning 29 April. Students must arrive 15 minutes before their exam and wait in Charnwood canteen.  They must have their equipment in a clear pencil case/bag and have their lanyards.  


Most exams are in G001, all students have been issued with their timetables with seat numbers on them.

There are no year 12 lessons or registration during week beginning 29 April except BTEC and visual art lessons. If your son/daughter has a BTEC /visual art lesson when they have an exam they must attend the exam.

For more exam information please click here

Mental Health and Wellbeing

A reminder that there is a school counsellor, a Post 16 Reflection room and many places that your son/daughter can study alone should they wish to. Please see Mrs Kempt for more information. There is a also a mindfulness drop in session on a Thursday lunchtime.


Core Programme

The Year 12s and 13s enjoyed an excellent talk from the BBC TV presenter Susannah Streeter who discussed her career path, the jobs market and how to get into journalism.


Young Enterprise

The final for the Young Enterprise (YE) is Thursday 1 May. Their recipe book is still available and is brilliant. We wish all the YE team lots of luck  

For more information from Post 16 please see the "This Term at Post 16" section of the website here.



Bristol Jobs Fair Bristol Jobs Fair will be held on Wednesday 22 May 2019 at the Colston Hall from 10.00a.m. to 2.00p.m.  There will be more than 25 local employers attending this event.


The Jobs Fair is free to attend for those looking to gain employment and suitable for anyone ages 16- 65.


Please find attached a poster for the upcoming Jobs Fair here. You can also click  here for the Bristol Jobs Fair Facebook event.



Many of the apprenticeships offered by top companies are closing very soon so students should be quick if they want to apply. See here for some great opportunities.

Here's a downloadable guide containing useful information about the application process, plus details of the work experience, school leaver and apprenticeship offers of their Top 100 companies.


Also, Which? University has a useful Guide to Higher & Degree Apprenticeships which can be downloaded from here.


BBC Bitesize

A useful careers resource can be found through BBC Bitesize here


Students looking for Saturday jobs can find good advice through this website


Subject Area News




Extra-Curricular Clubs

Please click here for a list of all of the PE/Sports Extra-Curricular activities available to students in Term 5.

Please click here to view all of our recent results and the upcoming fixtures for the week ahead.

Follow @CothamPE on Twitter for all the latest news and updates from the Cotham School PE department


Community News


Online Consultation: Safeguarding and Community Safety Partnerships Transformation

As part of the Safeguarding and Community Safety Partnerships Transformation project involving proposed changes to Bristol partnership boards we are now launching a public consultation for the Bristol population.


They want to hear public opinions on the proposed changes, as well as priorities, improvements to services and how to work better with the public. An online questionnaire is now live and can be found here.


This will remain open until 10 May. If you require this questionnaire in Easy Read or a different format, please contact Bristol Safeguarding Children Board on  0117 35 76257 or


They will also be holding a number of drop-in sessions where members of the public can attend to hear about the plans and let us know their priorities about the future in discussion. Click here to view the drop in sessions, where you can hear about the plans.



Junior Bake Off

Love Productions, the team behind the UK’s much loved baking show The Great British Bake Off and The Great British Sewing Bee, are delighted to announce that a 5th Series of Junior Bake Off is coming soon and applications are now open for this new Channel 4 show!


They are seeking talented young bakers between 9-15 Years old. Filming is due to take place from late July 2019 and applications close on Monday 6 May 2019.  


If you know of any budding young bakers that you think should apply then please encourage them to do so through this link.  


Please do spread the word about this very exciting opportunity! It would be amazing to have a student from Cotham School involved in the show. Click here for more information.


Friends of Alalay

Ex-Cotham student Annie Syrett has provided an update on her charity, Friends of Alalay. To read more about the work with the street children at Alalay at the moment, please click here


Community Choir

The Bristol City Singers is a new community choir that welcomes singers of all abilities. They are open to absolutely anyone, regardless of ability or experience, and offer a light-hearted, friendly, and relaxed atmosphere to enjoy singing. You don't have to be able to sing to any particular level and you don't need to be able to read music.If you love singing then this could be for you.


There is no sign up fee, no subscription fee and no subs to pay up-front for a whole term. You simply pay when you attend the choir, which just £5 a week.


The first rehearsal with Bristol City Singers Community Choir starts on Thursday 2 May at St Stephen’s Church Bristol, BS1 1EQ at 7.00p.m.-8.30p.m.


Please send an email to if you would like to attend the first rehearsal.Further information can be found by visiting their website here.


This is Classical Bristol

Click here to see Issue 29 of ‘This is Classical Bristol’ which features a series of boastful performances from performers such as Bristol Bach Choir.



Useful quick links

Keep us posted

It would be great if parents/carers could let the school know of any student achievements outside of school please. It is sometimes only at parents’ evenings that we find out what students are doing in their own time. Email us:

Key Dates

Please click here to view the Key Dates by year group for the 2018-19 academic year. You will be notified of any significant changes/additions, but please can we ask that you check the dates for your year group regularly as they are subject to change.

Parents’ Evening Booking System (PES)

Please click here to access the online appointment booking system for Parents Evenings/Family Consultation Day. Please note this is only available if an event is due. We will email you to let you know when booking opens. If you encounter any difficulties with booking your appointments please contact the admin team by email to or tel: 0117 919 8000

Assessment Calendars for KS3

We have created Assessment Calendars for 2018/19. Each Assessment Calendar contains details of the class assessments that will take place in their subjects. The final column contains a link which gives information about each of the assessments.
To see the Year 7 Assessment Calendar click here
To see the Year 8 Assessment Calendar click here
To see the Year 9 Assessment Calendar click here
To see the Year 10 Assessment Calendar click here
To see the Year 11 Assessment Calendar click here

Parents Information Sessions

KS3 Parent Information Session 4th October 2018 - click here
KS4 Year 10 Parent Information Session 20th November 2018 - click here
KS4 Year 11 Parent Information Session 8th November 2018 - click here
KS4 Year 11 Parent Information Morning Session 7th February 2019 - click here
KS4 Year 11 Parent ‘Post Mock’ Information Session 7th February 2019 - click here

Homework and Independent Learning timetables

Please see the attached link describing our Homework Guidelines for students in the school.
In KS3 we do not have homework timetables.
Homework and Independent Learning Timetable for Year 10
Homework and Independent Learning Timetable for Year 11


WisePay is the Online Payment Service at Cotham School which allows you to pay for trips and visits as well as to add credit to your child’s Cashless Catering account. Click here to access your account now. If you have any queries about your account please contact the support team by email to

School Uniform

Please click here to view the compulsory uniform requirements of Cotham School, along with visual examples of uniform and details of our uniform suppliers.


Click here to access GCSEpod which contains lots of revision resources for most GCSEs. Students self register through the website using their name and school details.

Diagnostic Questions

Click here to access. This site contains self marking quizzes with lots of templates including some from a range of exam boards. It’s easy to make your own questions in Microsoft PowerPoint too. Students sign up with their school Google account using the G+ button to automatically create a school account


Edmodo is an application that can be used on both mobile devices and in the web environment to create an online community of practice. Edmodo is a free social learning platform that allows students to access the course content uploaded by their teachers.


All students and teachers now have free access to Seneca - a revision and homework platform making studying more fun. Seneca is an interactive way to learn official course content. Their web app covers 150+ exam board specific courses condensing what students need to know for their exams. The software is able to identify gaps in learning. For instance, when you get a question wrong, the platform will repeat the topic in different formats and their smart algorithm has proven to make students remember topics 2x faster. Seneca is totally free for students, teacher and parents. You can sign up via

Contact Details

Please note the following contact numbers and email addresses if you need to contact the school:
Main Reception - 0117 919 8000/
Student Reception - 0117 919 8013 /
Absence - 0117 919 8019/
NBP16C - 0117 919 8100/
Finance - 0117 919 8016/
Exams - 0117 919 8024/
Admin Office - 01179198053/