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Principal's Blog 15th March 2019

15 March 2019
Principal's Blog 15th March 2019

County Line Assembly

On Tuesday 12th March, AlterEgo Creative Solutions came into to school to deliver their innovative production of ‘County Lines’. County Lines gangs pose a significant threat to vulnerable adults and children upon whom they rely to conduct and/or facilitate this criminality. The 60 minute production and post show Q and A including what county lines is, the grooming process, the similarities and potential crossovers between criminal exploitation and child sexual exploitation and how young people can spot the indicators of these. I would like to thank Miss Blackler and the English and the Science Faculties for allowing the whole of Year 9 out of lessons to experience this production. Mr Wakefield.

Students reflections of the production are below:

The acting was very good and relayed the message clear.

Good to make it relevant to them – made them think about it and the fact that it is close to home.

Interesting to see how different people are involved in the chain.

Thriving Through Venture Exhibition at the Ridgeway School & Sixth Form College

The Ridgeway School and Sixth Form College is currently hosting an exhibition displaying work from a local project called Thriving Through Venture. Thriving Through Venture (TTV) engages young people with: ‘real life purposeful projects’, (the 2018 year – developing skills in photography, writing and business for international development) moving beyond classroom and text books onto preparing them for the adult world by practical engagement with it, and with connecting and developing their awareness of the importance of having a sense of belonging through connecting with different people in their communities in Wiltshire but also further afield in the very different, predominantly Muslim and relatively poor community of Gunjur thus deepening their perspective of the world and giving them an essential experience of the global environment in which ultimately they will inevitably work. Through this type of work, resilience and self-confidence develop and thrive, helping our young people find their right place in the adult world – so important in a world which is ever changing, and challenging but where these two needs (having a sense of purpose and belonging) remain.

Why is The Ridgeway School hosting the exhibition?

We are proud to say that this exhibition displays a small piece of the work of two R6 students – Toby Leslie and Ellie Beale. They were involved in the Thriving Through Venture Project last year, whilst in Year 12

Ellie Beale was on the Storytelling team. She writes: Thriving Through Venture has been an amazing experience for me for so many reasons. For a start, I’ve made the most incredible friends that I never thought I would and made the best memories that will stay with me forever.

Before leaving for the trip to The Gambia, I thought it would be easy to leave home for two weeks, and for the most of it, it really was but there definitely were times that were harder than others. Everyone had a point when they struggled, but we all helped each other and managed to get through it together.

While we were there, we had the opportunity to visit the British High Embassy, got taught how to play Djembe drums which was so much fun and even got to teach our Gambian partners how to swim. For me, that is one of my favourite memories as it wasn’t a planned activity and it was nice to see how they progressed from the first time, when they were terrified, to being able to jump in the pool and have competitions to hold their breath for the longest, by the end. We could see how grateful they were and it definitely felt like that was the most worthwhile part of the trip.

TTV has proven to me that I’m a lot more resilient than I thought as part of my role as a storyteller was to interview people in and around Marlborough and compare them to interviews in Gunjur, then write a reflective piece on them. For me, I struggle to write for hours on end and, with the added heat, it felt like forever but I worked through it all and finished so that now my work can be included in a book that will be sold.

I’m proud to say I’ve been a part of TTV, especially it being the first year, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to have taken part.

Toby Leslie was on the Photography team.

Toby writes: TTV is an amazing life changing charity aimed towards those in need of a little lift in life. It offers collaborative programmes for young people that gives them skills and promotes confidence and mental well-being. The youth of the group work together within three different groups. Storytelling, where they develop their writing skills with the older generation by listening to their stories. The Mango Business, which is a start-up Fair-Trade business that exports Mangoes to the UK to increase the countries economy. Lastly the Photography, this gains a meaningful lifetime skill that fundamentally influences the vision in photography capturing a moment alongside the storytelling. The journey is through the year where the Mentors and Teenagers bond together with a weekend away and many catch-ups, before a memorable trip to The Gambia in August.

R6 students are getting involved in the project again this year. If you would like to find out more, please visit:

Basketball News

Well done to both the Year 7 and U15 Basketball teams who beat Royal Wotton Bassett Academy in our fixtures last week. Both games were closely contested and it was fantastic to see great sportsmanship between both schools as some students played their first ever Basketball match. The final scores were Year 7 – Win 8 – 6 and the U14 match – Win 12 – 4.

Nominated most valuable players were Cameron Rankin – Acosta for the U14s and Millie White for Year 7. Remember Girls’ Basketball club is on a Tuesday from 3.30 – 4.30pm.

Thank Yous

Following on from you kind donations, we have the following message from the charities that your donations have contributed to:

Thank you for your donation of £141.00 to Stonewall (reference W0645667). We simply couldn’t continue to do the work that we do without your generosity and we’re hugely grateful for your support.

Your contribution is particularly important to us now. Despite achieving almost full legal equality for LGBT people in Britain, we now face the even tougher task of changing hearts and minds here and around the world.

Kindest Regards, Tom Evans, Fundraising Assistant.

Wiltshire Mind
Many thanks from all the staff at Wiltshire Mind for your kind donation of £141. Wiltshire Mind is a Mental Health Charity providing much needed services to mental health sufferers across the county of Wiltshire. Our support groups provide a friendly place where anyone can find support and friendship.

Every year thousands of animals suffer from neglect, cruelty and abuse. With your help, we can end their misery. RSPCA rely on voluntary fundraising and donations to carry out our vital work. Thank you for your donation of £141.00. It is already on its way to changing an animal’s life.

McMillian Cancer Support
Thank you so much to The Ridgeway school & 6th Form College, thank you for your £211.50. Your donation will help Macmillan to be there for people living with cancer and their families, giving them all sorts of support when they need us most. This could be anything from a chat with someone who understands, to providing expert cancer information they can trust. Remember that we’re here to help if you need us. We have a team of experts who can answer any questions you have, offer support, or simply listen if you need a chat. Call us free on 0808 808 00 00.

Save the Children
Thank you for your generous donation of £647.91. Your gift will go towards helping some of the world’s most disadvantaged children. Claire Rowney, Director of Fundraising.

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