Curriculum Enrichment Week 2022 – Updates

Final Updates

Isles of Scilly – Final Two Days

Report written by Mr Banfield:
Friday brought us outstanding weather for the last group to go to Penninis Head to try coasteering, it was quite a sight to see our students taking the plunge (literally) and overcoming their fears to jump off the rocks. Whilst this was taking place, on the other side of the island some well crafted sand sculptures were being created and more ice-creams being consumed! In the afternoon we headed off on the Seahorse to the Western Isles where puffins, a nesting pair of peregrine falcons, a huge range of seabirds and the first sunfish of the year were spotted. In the evening, both camps held their award ceremonies where medals and certificates were given out for almost anything you could imagine!

Saturday was a bit overcast and drizzly which summed up the mood on both camps – we knew the end was in sight. Camps cleared, rubbish sorted and we headed into town for some final souvenir shopping before boarding the Scillonian for a rather bumpy cruise back.

So there we have it, the end of our first Scilly Camping week. As always, our students were an absolute credit to Penrice, we hope memories and friendships were made that last a lifetime. I would also like to publicly say a huge thank you to the team of Staff who supported this trip, without you it would never have been as amazing as it was!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Arts Trip to London – Day 5

Some final pictures from the Arts Trip to London on Friday where the team enjoyed a guided tour of the Royal Albert Hall before walking through Hyde Park and beginning their journey home.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Skate Week

There were lots of flips and tricks as students enjoyed CEW Skate Week.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Friday 22 July 2022

Living London Life – Days 3 & 4

Plenty of sightseeing for our Living London Life students over the past few days in the capital!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Isles of Scilly – Day 3 (Thursday)

As the sun broke through the clouds, the air was rich with the smell of suntan lotion. Students broke off for coasteering, rock sculpture making, a leisurely amble through the nature reserve and plenty of lounging on the beach!

The Tresco group headed off on the tripper boat and basked in the amazing Abbey Gardens where the friendly animals couldn’t help but pose for photos.

Today, for the last day, we hear that the team are going on a Nature Cruise and are all very excited!
For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Kernow Week – Group 1

Kernow Week Group 1 have been busy exploring the best Cornwall has to offer throughout the week. Pictured below are a day at Healey’s Cider Farm (Tuesday), a walk around Fowey and the surrounding area (Wednesday), and today at Restormel Castle and Readymoney Cove.

Arts Trip to London – Day 4

Our creative students headed to the National Gallery on Thursday where they learnt how to make paint in a private workshop followed by time exploring the gallery

After the workshop and lunch, they walked down the Mall towards Buckingham Palace and the Queen Victoria Memorial before heading to Horse Guards’ Parade and Whitehall via St James’ Palace.

Later in the afternoon, they visited the iconic Hard-Rock Café and picked up some souvenirs. But they weren’t done there!!

Later in the evening, they headed to the Fortune Theatre to see a spooky performance of The Woman in Black with professional actors. What a busy day!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Kernow Week – Group 2

Our Kernow Week students had lovely weather on Thursday when they visited Readymoney Cove and Restormel Castle.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Action & Adventure Week – Group 3

It was an adrenaline-filled day on Thursday for Action & Adventure Group 3 who headed to Hangloose Eden!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

All Things Sporty

Our All Things Sporty students are still going strong despite 5 days of physical activity. They started on Monday with Rounders and Basketball. On Tuesday they played Volleyball and Football before taking on a Fitness Challenge on Wednesday! Yesterday was the turn of Dodgeball and Badminton.

Today, they have rounded off the week with a tournament of different sports. Here they are playing football on the Astro earlier this morning.

Plymouth Argyle FC Week – Day 4

It was a magical day for our PAFC students yesterday as they were given a guided tour of Home Park Stadium. A big thank you to Plymouth Argyle for this fantastic experience 💚

After the tour, the students then enjoyed a 5-a-side tournament in the Goals Centre, Plymouth.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Isles of Scilly – Day 2 (Wednesday)

On Wednesday, the Isles of Scilly team headed to Porthmellon for a watersports day! They were split into 3 groups – one doing stand-up paddleboarding, one doing kayaking and the other doing beach games. The students also had time to enjoy a leisurely stroll through Old Town.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

History Trip to Bristol – Days 3 & 4

We are delighted to report that our Historians have returned safely from Bristol! Here are a collection of photos from their final two days in and around the iconic city.

On Wednesday, the team enjoyed some downtime, heading to Longleat Safari Park to see some wild and exotic animals! On Thursday, for their final day, the students headed to Cheddar Gorge to see the majestic caves that have been carved over millenniums.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Coarse Fishing

The drizzly weather didn’t dampen the spirits of our Coarse Fishing students on Wednesday when they visited Gwinear Angling near Newquay.

Look at the size of some of those fish 🤯

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Around the World in 5 Days – Days 3 & 4

Our globe-trotters have been experiencing European cultures over the past few days including France, Italy, Spain and our own British culture.

On Wednesday, the team travelled to Institut Francais, immersing themselves in a variety of French language activities and a film. After this, they all enjoyed some fun team games in Hyde Park before an evening meal at Pizza Express.

On Thursday, they headed to the British Museum for a self-guided tour in the morning. But there was no time to rest! – In the afternoon, the team experienced Spanish culture in Pineapple Dance Studios with a Flamenco show! All of this resulted in some very hungry appetites and, continuing the Spanish theme, they all enjoyed tapas!

Wishing all of the Around the World team a fun-filled last day and a safe journey home.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Thursday 21 July 2022

Action & Adventure (Group 2)

Our thrill-seekers in Group 2 tackled a series of fun obstacle courses at BF Adventure yesterday. Great teambuilding exercises and smiles all around!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

The Great British Golf Getaway

Hello from the team in Devon on The Great British Golf Getaway! 👋

We hear that all of the training is paying off with noticeable improvements in our students’ games!

Riding at Barguse Stables

Some lovely pictures taken over the last few days from Barguse Riding Centre where students have been enjoying riding lessons as well as learning about horse management, stable care and horse care.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Robotics Week

The Robotics Week team have had a fleet of robots out in force ranging from MARS rovers to remote controlled buggies! Today they were programming Lego spike prime, creating dancing robots – they also had a hopper race. All of these robots are entirely coded by our students and it has been wonderful to see their creations.

This afternoon they are continuing the development of their computer games using scratch. So far we have flying cat games, horror games, and a zombie survival game!

Isles of Scilly Trip

Great news – The Isles of Scilly team have found some WiFi!! 😀 . Photos are beginning to filter through. Here are the pictures from Day 1 of the trip – the Scillonian journey and setting up camp!

More photos to follow shortly!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Arts Trip to London – Day 3

Did someone say ‘London Eye’???!

Our Creative Arts students enjoyed stunning views over the city centre yesterday afternoon as they took a ride on one of London’s most iconic landmarks!

Earlier in the day they visited the Tate Modern to see some of the finest artwork in the country. In the late afternoon (after the London Eye), the team headed to the National Theatre for a backstage tour!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Wednesday 20 July 2022

Farm Week – Day 2

The students participating in Farm Week visited Duchy College’s Future Farm on Tuesday. During the trip, the students learnt all about how cows are milked, where they live and what they eat. They also had the chance to milk Daisy the cow, have a tractor driving tutorial and check on the farm sheep whilst having a tractor and trailer ride! They ended the day by sampling some cheese made from the cows’ milk.

Chill and Thrill – Day 2

Our Thrill and Chill students enjoyed a day at Adrenaline Quarry on Tuesday! They started the morning on giant inflatables in the aqua park. This was followed by axe throwing in the afternoon.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Around the World in 5 Days – Day 2

Say cheeeeese!

The team started Tuesday with a guided walking tour of London – here they are by Covent Garden Market!

This was followed by a visit to a nearby Mosque where they were given a tour by one of the Mosque leaders.

The day finished with some relaxed team games in Regents Park before heading to a Lebanese restaurant in the evening.

Isles of Scilly Trip

Oh dear – we’re experiencing some Scilly internet problems! Mr Banfield has been taking many photos but we’re just having trouble sending them across. Stay tuned for a MEGA update when all of the images arrive!

Arts Trip to London – Days 1 & 2

After arriving at London Paddington on Monday and getting settled into their accommodation, the crew headed straight to the London Dungeon – full of talented live actors bringing 1000 years of authentic London history to life! This was followed by an evening meal at Wahacca and a leisurely evening walk up the River Thames, taking in the sights and landmarks.

On Day 2, the students headed to a theatre workshop in Covent Garden with professional performers. They stayed near Covent Garden all day in order to watch the professionals take to the stage in their production of The Lion King at the Lyceum Theatre straight after dinner.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Action & Adventure (Group 1)

On Tuesday, our Group 1 thrill-seekers headed to Hangloose at Eden Project! They had to be patient and wait for a while until the rain and thunder to passed, but pupils were kept entertained by passing time with the Rock Paper Scissors game, team Mrs Razzel Vs team Mrs Skyba. Mrs Razzel’s team were victorious, just in time to go back out and hangloose!!!!

Action & Adventure (Group 4)

Our students were put through their paces at BF Adventure yesterday in a variety of adrenaline-filled communication and teambuilding activities.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Living London Life – Days 1 and 2

Great to see everyone enjoying themselves!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

History Trip to Bristol – Day 2 Highlights

Our young historians had a jam-packed itinerary for their second day in Bristol. They started the morning with a buffet breakfast before heading to the Brunel’s SS Great Britain. From there, they received a guided tour, looking at the Dry Dock and the Being Brunel Museum.

After lunch, students headed to Aerospace Bristol and were amazed at the story of the retired Concorde supersonic plane which they had on display! But their day wasn’t over there…

In the evening, the team visited Café Rouge in Cribbs Causeway. A lovely way to end a busy day!

Tuesday 19 July 2022

History Trip to Bristol – Day 1 Highlights

Our budding historians have been busy exploring Bristol. They kickstarted the week with a walking tour around the city centre on Monday before heading to the Roman Baths!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Chill and Thrill

Zapppppp! – Our Chill and Thrill group had lots of fun at Big Dunk’s Laser Tag yesterday where they enjoyed a series of laser tag games in the outdoor arena and nearby woodland.

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

All Things Creative

Elsewhere, in school, our artistic students have been using vibrant colours to design their names. Some really eye-catching work here 👏

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Action & Adventure (Group 4)

It was beautiful weather for learning how to surf at Fistral Beach yesterday. Here are our Action & Adventure students in enjoying the waves!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Around the World in 5 Days (London Trip)

Our young explorers have wasted no time in immersing themselves in different cultures on their UK Residential trip!

Students take in the views of the London Eye

Yesterday, students started their journey by experiencing Africa, enjoying a drumming workshop before creating some African art at the Africa Centre.

Late in the afternoon, the team walked alongside the River Thames and took in the views of the London Eye and Chinatown.

All of this activity, paired with the long trip up from Cornwall, resulted in some very hungry appetites! The students thoroughly enjoyed their Mexican evening which included tacos, burritos, enchiladas and much more!

For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Monday 18 July 2022

We’ve had an awesome first day of Curriculum Enrichment Week here at Penrice!

In Chef Week, local chef Craig Barrett joined our budding cooks in the Penrice Kitchen. On the Astro, coaches from Plymouth Argyle began the week by giving our students a taste of what it is like to train like a professional.

PAFC Week – Curriculum Enrichment Week (CEW) 2022

Elsewhere in Farm Week, students have been learning how to groom, clean and care for the animals. And finally, in Jedi Academy, our young padawans have been using the force in a variety of sensory based games (which just so happened to involve water pistols)!

We’re beginning to gather photos from our out-of-school trips, including our UK residentials, and we’ll start sharing these tomorrow – so do keep checking our page for updates! For more photos, please visit our Facebook page.

Team Porthpean Win Sports Day 2022

A great effort by our pupils yesterday who gave it their all on Sports Day! Congratulations to Team Porthpean on romping to victory by a clear margin!

There were an enormous range of activities on offer ranging from traditional track and field events to more obscure Sports Day activities such as Archery, BMX Riding, French Boules and even Cornish Wrestling.

1st Place: 739 Points, Porthpean
2nd Place: 775 Points, Pentewan
3rd Place: 785 Points, Charlestown
4th Place: 789 Points, Par
5th Place: 790 Points, Mevagissey
6th Place: 794 Points, Carlyon Bay
[Lowest points tally wins]

The end of the day saw Penrice teachers and support staff come together for a Tug of War competition before a hotly contested staff relay, receiving rapturous applause by all pupils who were cheering on by the side of the track.

Thank you to all of the pupils for really getting into the spirit of Sports Day and cheering each other on. And a special thank you to the Penrice PE team for organising a fantastic day.

Sports Day Image Gallery

A full image gallery from Sports Day 2022 can be found via the link below.

Introducing our New Head Students

We are delighted to introduce our new Head Students: Thalia and Alfie!

All of the prefects who were interviewed for positions / roles over the last two weeks did themselves proud and we wish them all the best in their new Senior Prefect roles.

Mr Kev Toms
Head of Year 10

“I am delighted to announce that Thalia and Alfie will be representing the school as our new Head Students. Both students have shown leadership, teamwork and fantastic communication skills throughout the selection process and I look forward to see them fulfil these roles and responsibilities representing all students at Penrice Academy.”

This year’s senior prefects were chosen following a rigorous selection process which included a teamwork and leadership day on Carlyon Bay beach.

Students Enjoy Three Days of Enrichment Activities

This week saw Years 7, 8 and 9 take part in three action-packed Enrichment Days here at Penrice.

The purpose of Penrice Enrichment Days is to teach and develop new skills in our students that they might otherwise not get to learn in traditional classroom lessons. This is all part of our mission to keep students safe and develop them into well-rounded, balanced individuals who are ready to make a positive impact in the local community and beyond.

Year 7

Over the course of three days, Year 7 enjoyed workshops on Careers, Wellbeing, Online Safety (Online Relationships) and Modern Foreign Languages – La Salsa. There were also sessions in PE, Computing and Business and Food & Nutrition. There was a visit from Solomon Theatre Company with their Time Out Production which discussed external pressures that Year 7 may face as they grow older. Finally, Mrs Donna McGrath, the schools First Aid Instructor, delivered her ever-popular Mini Medics First Aid Training, teaching students everything from CPR to the Heimlich Maneuverer.

Year 8

Year 8 explored Careers, Concepts of Substance – Caffeine, Healthy Relationships, Modern Foreign Languages – Festivals, PE, Mini Medics First Aid Training and Talk it Over (Online Hate). Ms Aimee Stevens also delivered an eye-opening workshop on the influence of Social Media on Body Image perceptions. Solomon Theatre’s Time Out Production completed the three-day itinerary.

Solomon Theatre performance at Penrice Academy

Year 9

Year 9’s line up included: YZUP (Drugs/Substances Talk), Wellbeing, Healthy Relationships, Modern Foreign Languages – The Apprentice, Solomon Theatre’s Time Out Production, PE, Computing and Business, A discussion on Sexual Health, a Mini Medics First Aid Refresher, and a Careers Workshop led by our Careers Lead, Mrs Turner.

Mrs Lorraine Turner delivering a Careers Talk on Level 3 Qualifications

Henry Orchard & Sons donate £10,000 to fund purchase of defibrillators in local schools

For any parent, hearing that your 11-year-old child has collapsed and suffered a cardiac arrest is the stuff of nightmares. That nightmarish scenario became a reality for Donna and Kevin Richards in December 2021 when their son, Finlay, collapsed at Penrice Academy due to a previously undiagnosed heart condition. Fortunately, this story has a happy ending.

The quick delivery of CPR by the school’s First Aid Instructor and, crucially, the use of the school’s defibrillator (purchased in 2018) managed to save Finlay’s life.

Following on from the incident in December, Cornwall Education Learning Trust (the Multi Academy Trust that owns Penrice Academy) has been campaigning to raise £20,000 worth of funds to purchase defibrillators for all 10 Primaries and 4 Secondaries under its care.

Today, the Trust are delighted to announce a generous five-figure donation of £10,000 made by St Austell-based scrap metal merchant Henry Orchard & Sons.

The donation came as a result of Luxulyan Primary School’s Mount Everest Challenge – a sponsored 47 laps around the school field that was the carefully measured equivalent height of Mount Everest.

Students from Year 1 all the way up to Year 6 encouraged and supported each other as they ran, jogged, skipped, walked and even cartwheeled their way around, signing their event cards at key checkpoints.

Emma Williams, Head of School at Luxulyan School, said:

“When Mr Orchard phoned, it started off like any normal conversation. He said that he had heard about Finlay’s story and our fundraising through some Luxulyan parents. I explained in more detail what we were doing and how the community were coming together to raise money for a defibrillator. Mr Orchard then said he would like to donate £10,000 and I was completely taken aback. I honestly don’t remember much of the conversation after that – I was lost for words. All I could do was express my sincere thanks and gratitude to Mr Orchard.”

During a cheque presentation on Tuesday 14 June, Mr Orchard said:

“I had heard of Finlay’s story and, as a family business, we feel it is important to give back to the local community. My brother and I both went to Luxulyan Primary and Penrice as a secondary school. It is nice to give something back to our childhood schools; it’s a brilliant cause. Defibrillators should be in every school, every village, and everywhere that is accessible.”, a UK supplier of defibrillators, state that if a person suffers a cardiac arrest their chances of survival are 5%, however when a defibrillator is used within the first 10 minutes this increases to 75%.

Mrs Donna McGrath
First Aid Instructor at Penrice Academy

Donna McGrath, Penrice Academy’s First Aid Instructor who revived Finlay, called for a reform in UK government legislation saying:

“The survival rates without defibrillators really do plummet. Nationally, there are 270 instances of what happened to Finlay in schools each year. Legally, you are required to have a fire extinguisher in school, yet despite the alarming statistics, schools are not legally required to have a defibrillator.
A key barrier to purchasing a defibrillator for schools is limited budget. We feel that defibrillators should be government funded for all schools, but in the meantime, we are doing all we can to raise funds and purchase our own. A massive thank you must go to Mr Orchard for recognising this need and supporting our campaign.”

Cornwall Education Learning Trust plan on installing the defibrillators just outside their school gates, making them publicly accessible in the event of emergencies.

Henry Orchard & Sons - Cornwall Education Learning Trust Cheque Presentation

[Caption] Cheque presentation featuring L-R: Finlay’s Mum, Donna McGrath (First Aid Instructor at Penrice), Nathan Cooper (Teacher at Luxulyan), Ewan (Year 5 at Luxulyan), Mr Henry Orchard, Geoff Brown (Chair of Trust Board at Cornwall Education Learning Trust), Oliver (Year 6 at Luxulyan), Emma Williams (Head of School at Luxulyan), Flora (Year 5 at Luxulyan), Finlay’s Dad, Finlay, Finlay’s Sister, Lucy Gambier (Headteacher at Penrice).

When interviewed at the cheque presentation, Mr Geoff Brown, Chair of Trust Board at Cornwall Education Learning Trust, was keen to share some myth-busting for members of the public who may have never used a defibrillator.

Mr Brown said:

“If you have never used a defibrillator before then don’t be afraid. If you open a defibrillator, it will talk you through the whole process. It will encourage you to stay calm, direct you on where to place the pads. Furthermore, if the patient is not suitable to receive a shock, it will detect this and not shock the patient; you really can’t go wrong. They’re purposely designed for use by people with little to no experience, so don’t feel daunted.”

Lucy Gambier, Headteacher at Penrice Academy, finished by saying:

“It is so amazing that we can all be here today with such a great news story to share and to help publicise the use of defibrillators more widely. A big thank you to Henry Orchard & Sons for their support.”

Members of the public and local businesses can donate to the Cornwall Education Trust defibrillator fundraising campaign by visiting their new JustGiving page.*

*NOTE: At the time of publishing, the previously donated sums of money are not updated on the Just Giving Page. The current fundraising total stands at over £12,000, with a further £8,000 to go to reach our target. We will work to update the JustGiving page as soon as possible.

BBC Spotlight Report

BBC Spotlight reported on Finlay’s story earlier in the year. The full video on their report can be watched below.

Year 10 Enter Phase II of Senior Prefect Selection at Carlyon Bay Beach

A select group of aspiring Year 10 prefects headed to Carlyon Bay Beach on Thursday 26 May for an outdoor challenge day as part of their senior prefect application process.

The day, which will contribute towards the decision-making process for Head Boy and Head Girl (in June), saw our Year 10s enjoy a wide range of teambuilding exercises including ice-breakers, knot tying, blindfolded guidance games, puzzles, logical team thinking challenges and a group discussion on what they thought made an effective team.

Making observations from the sidelines were Mr Toms – Head of Year 10, Mrs Sutcliffe – Pastoral Support Mentor for Year 10, and Mr Hammersley – Deputy Headteacher.

When asked which traits he is looking for most, Mr Toms, the recently appointed Head of Year 10, responded:

Mr Kev Toms
Head of Year 10

“I would say Integrity, Honesty and Reliability.
The students have never done today’s activities before. I am looking out for those students who can react positively to new situations they’re not comfortable with, and then I’ll be asking them to take that approach back into school life. I’m looking for senior prefects who can work well with each other, who are ready to take on leadership responsibilities and who can communicate their ideas effectively. However, most importantly, I am looking for individuals who are willing to put themselves out there, fail, dust themselves off, get back up again and succeed.”

As of tomorrow (Friday 27 May), students are invited to apply for a range of senior prefect roles over half term including Head Boy, Head Girl, Year Group leaders, Charity leaders and so much more. Final decisions will be made roughly 2 weeks after half term.

Mr Toms finished by saying:

“The students have done Penrice Academy proud today – fantastic attitude. And we also say thank you to Sweat Cornwall for hosting such an enjoyable day.”

Boys’ Athletics Teams Clinch County Title

News coming in from the PE Department where both of our Boys’ Athletics teams were victorious against 17 other Cornish schools as they lifted the County Cup last week!

As a result of both teams winning, we will be taking them to compete against the other county champions from across the southwest at Millfield School on Wednesday 15th June. An amazing opportunity for 30 of our students!

There were a plethora of events in which our students triumphed in including 100m, 200m, 300m, 800m, 1500m, Hurdles, Relay, Shot Put, Discus, Javelin, Long Jump, High Jump and Triple Jump.

Consistency is Key

The title was secured by accumulating points over the course of the day by getting times and distances. It was a fantastic team effort – it was the consistency of the whole team that won the event for Penrice.

When asked about how Penrice has achieved this feat, Mr Jenkin said:

Mr Adam Jenkin
PE Teacher at Penrice Academy

“This year, we started doing Athletics training in March in lessons and after school twice a week. We have taken over 80 students to Par to use the facilities there and the local Athletics club in Par have offered/provided 4 coaches to help develop our students fitness/technique. We also have Elite Penrice Plus Sessions on a Friday where we invite high performing athletes to do advanced training. But the main ingredient to success is students’ hard work. They have identified their areas of strength and pursued this with dedication, commitment and hard work.
The PE Department are extremely proud of all of the athletes. This is their achievement and we are really excited that they now get to represent Cornwall at the regional finals on Wednesday 15th June at Millfield.”

The Girls’ competition takes place later this week having been postponed previously due to bad weather.

Students Complete Ten Tors Challenge 2022

Huge congratulations to all 3 of our Ten Tors teams who successfully completed the 35-mile challenge this weekend!

Our determined students began training for the expedition at the start of the academic year and all of their hard work paid off as they navigated Dartmoor under the energy-sapping sunshine.

Ms Penrose, Ten Tors Leader at Penrice Academy, said:

“Congratulations! What a fantastic team effort under very difficult conditions with the sun being extremely hot.”

Mr Rogers, Ten Tors Assistant, added:

“Every student embodied the Penrice values – Pride, Respect and Success.
Pride – In themselves and representing the School in the Ten Tors Challenge
Respect – Respect for Team members and other participants in Ten Tors along with the challenge ahead of them.
Success – Achieving their goal of completing the Ten Tors Challenge.”

Well done to all of our students and a special thank you to all of the staff members who have contributed their time over the various weekends to make Ten Tors 2022 a successful event.

To find out more about Ten Tors at Penrice, visit the website page here.

Year 11 Conquer the 24-Hour Charity Challenge


The last dance!!! – Congratulations to Year 11 on completing the #24HourChallenge!!!! 🥳 🥳

Dancing, cycling and rowing, non-stop for 24 hours! ✔️

Over £3,000 raised in total for Young Lives vs Cancer, Kidney Care UK and The Brain Tumour Charity, all of which have close personal ties with students/staff at Penrice ❤
Have a happy Easter everyone!! 😀

You can view the video of Year 11’s final dance on our facebook page using the link below.

Views from Mr Potter

Mr Matthew Potter
Pastoral Support Mentor for Year 11

“They have all worked really hard. Thank you to every student for their dedication and for working tirelessly over the last 24 hours, being the best they can be.
The students are very very tired, but they have all had a really good time and have smiles on their faces. Well done everyone!”

Views from Kidney Care UK
Laura Toop, Community Fundraising Manager at Kidney Care UK said:

“What a fantastic achievement and to have raised over £3,000 for Kidney Care UK, Young Lives vs Cancer and Brain Tumour Charity is incredible. Your support makes a huge impact. Thanks to you, we will continue to be there for anyone that is struggling physically, mentally or financially.
Wishing you all a well-earned, relaxing Easter break.”


We’re super proud of our Year 11 students. It’s currently 9:30am and they have exactly 4 hours left to go. They are showing tremendous endurance, stamina and, most importantly, positivity!


Almost sunrise! Thumbs up 👍


Entering the night shift! Thank you for all of your support on social media so far, it means so much to our Year 11 students!

We are Go!!

13:30!! Here we go! Cycling, rowing and dancing, non-stop for 24 hours!!!!

In the Build Up…

On Thursday 7 April, Year 11 will be taking on the traditional Penrice 24-Hour Charity Challenge. The event is a real test of each student’s endurance and stamina as they are required to take shifts cycling, rowing and dancing, non-stop for 24 hours.

This year’s event is in aid of three charities:

All of these three charities have played a key role in the lives of particular students and staff who are taking part in the 24-Hour Challenge and we look forward to raising as much money as possible for these worthy causes.

Mr Matthew Potter
Pastoral Support Mentor for Year 11

“It has been a number of years since we last held such an event at Penrice, so it’s certainly been a long time coming. We’ve all had a weird couple of years with so many of the usual yearly highlights cancelled or endlessly put back.
I very much share the students’ excitement about the Year 11 24-Hour Challenge and hope that together, with the students’ friends and family, we can raise a substantial amount for the three charities which have links with our year group.”

We look forward to following the students’ progress as they work through the night in this test of endurance and stamina.

Messages of Support from the Chosen Charities

Year 11 have also received some words of encouragement from the selected charities.

Stephanie Parker, Fundraising Events & Engagement Team Manager at Young Lives vs Cancer, said:

“By taking part in this exciting fundraising challenge pupils will be helping young cancer patients when they need it most. We hope everyone enjoys taking part and we can’t wait to hear how it all goes! Thanks to Penrice Academy we will be able to help even more children and young people find the strength to face everything cancer throws at them. Good luck to you all!”

Laura Toop, Community Fundraising Manager at Kidney Care UK added:

“Wishing all the incredible students and staff at Penrice Academy the very best of luck taking on this 24-Hour Challenge and raising vital funds and awareness for Kidney Care UK. The money raised will have a life changing impact on the kidney patients we support. We can’t thank them enough!”

Gina Almond, Director of Fundraising at The Brain Tumor Charity, said:

“We are grateful for all the efforts Penrice Academy students are putting into their fundraising and challenge. We thank you all for taking part in your 24 hour event – we hope you have a fantastic time and can’t wait to hear how you get on – good luck!”

About the Chosen Charities

Young Lives vs Cancer

Young Lives vs Cancer support everyone under 25 with cancer, and their families. Their mission is to ensure those with cancer will get the support and help they need during their cancer treatment and beyond, including bereaved families living with emotional pain. An extract from the website reads:

“We know everyone’s different, so we work hard to make sure each family has what they need to get through cancer. It could be a financial grant for a parent struggling to keep their child warm through their treatment or for a young person who can’t afford to get to hospital. Or helping a family stay together at one of our free Homes from Home close to the hospital where their child is having treatment.”

Kidney Care UK

Kidney Care UK is the UK’s leading kidney patient support charity, providing practical, financial and emotional assistance for kidney patients and their families throughout the UK.

Kidney disease affects three million people in the UK. It is a lifelong condition that can impact anyone regardless of their age, gender, or race. The challenges and treatments kidney patients face are tough and relentless; there is no cure for kidney disease. Living with a chronic illness like kidney disease will have a huge impact on how you feel physically as well as your mental health and could also have an impact on how much you’re able to earn and how much money you have to live on and look after your family. Lots of people with kidney disease tell us that they don’t think there is enough awareness of the condition and how it can affect you; we exist because we believe that no one should face this alone. That’s why we are so grateful for the support of Penrice Academy.

The Brain Tumor Charity

The Brain Tumor Charity is the UK’s largest dedicated brain tumour charity, committed to fighting brain tumours on all fronts. They fund pioneering research to increase survival and improve treatment options as well as raising awareness of the symptoms and effects of brain tumours to bring about earlier diagnosis. The Charity also provides support for everyone affected so that they can live as full a life as possible, with the best quality of life.

Thank you for reading. If you would like to donate and are not in contact with one of our Year 11 fundraisers, please contact: Mr Matthew Potter via

Update – Kaydon (Year 11) Elected as Youth Parliament Representative

Update – Wednesday 6 April 2022

On Wednesday 6 April, Cllr James Mustoe visited Penrice Academy to meet Kaydon in person and congratulate him on being elected as a Member of Youth Parliament (MYP).

Cllr James Mustoe and Kaydon standing outside Penrice Academy

The pair chatted for over half an hour, discussing Kaydon’s aims in Youth Parliament as well as tackling the key issue of what more can be done to support teachers/pupils with Special Education Needs in Cornish schools.

At the end of the meeting, Mr Mustoe said:

“It was absolutely brilliant to meet Kaydon today and talk about his work as a Member of Youth Parliament. It is clear that he is a fantastic ambassador for Penrice Academy and the wider community. I wish him all the best for his first Youth Parliament meeting on Saturday 30th April and for his future.”

Full Story (March 2022)

Kaydon in Year 11 has been receiving plaudits from teachers and classmates over the past week after being elected as a Member of Youth Parliament (MYP), representing Cornwall.

His manifesto, which focussed on championing autism, clearly struck a chord with young voters across the county and the 16-year-old is now one of three MYPs to be elected for Cornwall.

Kaydon’s key goal is to achieve more clarity for people with autism. He will particularly be campaigning for funding to deliver specialist training for teachers and schools.

He explained:

“As I am someone who lives with Autism, I really want to give young people with autism in Cornwall a voice as I feel so much more can be done.”

He continued:

“Everyone has been supporting me throughout. In particular, I must say thanks to my Penrice tutor Miss Rice, my Penrice keyworker Mrs Rogers, and my St Blazey club leader, Mandy Hiscock. Lots of my classmates at school have shown their support by voting for me in the election. I’ve also received lots of support from my clubmates in St Blazey.”

Kaydon is one of three new MYPs for Cornwall and he will meet his two colleagues for the first time on Saturday 30th April during their first parliamentary meeting.

He will hold the position as a MYP for the next 2 years.

Miss Rice, History Teacher and Kaydon’s Tutor, said:

“Kaydon has been a fantastic ambassador for Penrice Academy for many years. He has represented the tutor group on the Year Council in Year 10. More recently, in the past 12 months, he has been and great addition to the Prefect Team. This new appointment is testament to Kaydon’s dedication and commitment to issues close to him. I am so proud of what he has achieved and wish him every success in his new role!”

Mrs Rodgers, a SEND Support Specialist at Penrice Academy, said:

“This is an amazing achievement and I know how hard he has worked to get it, I for one cannot think of a better, well deserving young person to participate in updating the UK Youth Parliament Manifesto!”.

Next year, Kaydon plans to head to St Austell College and study Introduction to Motor Mechanics Level 3. Kaydon enjoyed working in a garage for work experience and wishes to pursue this avenue further.

Penrice Academy wishes Kaydon the best for his role as a MYP and in his future endeavours.

For more information, please visit the British Youth Council website.

Ukraine – Cuddly Toy Appeal

Thursday 31 March 2022

An update from Mrs Malcolm…

Mrs Sarah Malcolm
Teacher and Lead Liaison with Holy Trinity Church

“I am so overwhelmed with how many beautiful cuddly toys have been donated to our second Ukraine Appeal!
It has been a delight to see kindness and thoughtfulness in action. One Year 8 student has labelled all her cuddly toys with names and the statement, “I am going to be your best friend” along with a little backpack of sweets! Another student has delivered cuddly toys in beautiful knitted outfits with sweets in pink stripy bags.
These lovely toys are going to be delivered to Holy Trinity Church this weekend, for immediate delivery to children affected by the war. However, our appeal for more cuddly toys and sweets is still on. The opportunity to bring a smile to a Ukrainian child’s face with a surprise present can still be part of your agenda before the Spring Term finishes.
Thank you so much!”

Tuesday 22 March 2022

Can you help with phase two of our Ukraine appeal as we begin our search for cuddly toys?

If you have cuddly toys at home, please donate them to your tutor and we will help them reach displaced Ukrainian refugees fleeing the conflict in Eastern Europe.

If you can help, please check these rules:


  • Your donated cuddly toy MUST be clean OR freshly washed.
  • Your donated cuddly toy should not be bigger than 30cm, which is the size of a long ruler. This is because she or he will be shipped with other important items such as food and too big won’t be sent.


  • If you can include a small (40g) packet of sweets with your cuddly toy then that would be greatly appreciated by the child. Please make sure they are gummy sweets and nothing that will melt (chocolate).
  • You could put a gift tag around your toy’s neck or wrist with his or her name. A small child would love this.
  • Thanks in advance for your continued support. Further information is below regarding our first Ukraine appeal.

    Friday 11 March 2022

    Thank you to the Penrice Community who have made donations in support of Ukraine 💙💛. Our second batch of donations were delivered to Holy Trinity Church in St Austell on Friday 11 March.

    The donations included:
    • Bandages
    • Slings
    • Plasters
    • Antiseptic cream
    • Burn ointment
    • Crutches
    • Water purifying tablets
    • Space (foil) blankets
    • Nappies (disposable)
    • Baby wipes
    • Sudocrem
    • Sanitary items
    • Soap (soap not shower gels. The bar needs to be in its packaging).
    • Baby milk
    • Powdered milk

    VIP Visitor
    Our Academy Council were joined by a special visitor on Friday 11 March when Chris Gardner, from the Holy Trinity Church and Supporting Ukraine, St Austell, came into school to see our donations so far.

    Chris took the time to explain to our Academy Council where the donations will go, as well as discussing ideas on what the Academy Council can do next to help. Some great fundraising ideas were put forward, so stay tuned for future updates!

    The Academy Council and Chris Gardner pictured by our second batch of donations to the Ukraine appeal

    Mrs Malcolm, Teacher and Lead Liaison with Holy Trinity Church, said:

    “We have been incredibly proud of the generosity of our Penrice community this week. We have been able to deliver an enormous number of necessary items to Holy Trinity Church on two occasions and as such we have witnessed Character Education in action. It has been wonderful to see our community responding to the conflict in Ukraine with resourcefulness; knowing that their neighbourliness, their compassion, and their citizenship is part of what we can do at this present time to serve others.”

Curtain Rises on Penrice School Production of Mary Poppins

What a fantastic week it has been here at Penrice! The Assembly Hall was filled to capacity on all three nights of Mary Poppins and every show was greeted with rapturous applause by each audience.

This was the first school production since pre-Covid times (2019) and it was certainly worth the wait with classics including Step in Time, Jolly Holiday, Feed the Birds and so many more. We were also delighted to see the audience join in the singing to Let’s Go Fly a Kite, waving their custom-designed programme booklets that turned into kites!

From the cast to the backstage team, the set design team to the sound and lighting technicians, plaudits must go to everyone involved in the school production; it was truly exceptional and you can all be very proud of your performances.

Image Gallery

All of the pictures can be found in an online image gallery via the link below.

SongFest 2022 – Pupils Take to the Stage at The Plymouth Pavilions

A musically-talented group of 15 students performed live on stage at the Plymouth Pavilions yesterday as part of SongFest 2022.

The event was organised by Cornwall Music Education Hub and saw schools come together from across Cornwall and Devon to sing in one giant ensemble.

SongFest took place across 6 locations – Penzance, Falmouth, Wadebridge, Truro, Launceston and Plymouth. Penrice Academy were delighted to be chosen to join schools showcasing their talent at the magnificent Plymouth Pavilions.

Mr Brodey, Music Teacher at Penrice Academy, explained:

“Songfest is all about developing students’ confidence and skills to perform in front of an audience. It was great for them to see other schools, other children, and experience that sense of ensemble. It was a fantastic experience for our students to perform at such an iconic venue; it’s not everyday that pupils can go home and tell their parents that they have been on stage singing to such a large audience.”

The SongFest Team at the Plymouth Pavilions Stage Door

All students had been learning the SongFest 2022 songs in their music lessons since Christmas. Volunteers were then invited back to the music rooms during breaktimes and lunchtimes (Tuesday and Thursdays) if they were inspired to get on stage and participate in the big event.

Student Views

Jack (7JS) said:

“I thought it would be a bit of fun, a great experience and an opportunity that I would not get to do again”.

Lacey (7IHC) said:

“I was a bit nervous when stepping on stage at first. But then it was really fun, especially doing all of the actions for the songs”.

Izzy (7IHC) said:

“My favourite song was Empower Me, because you felt like you had the power on stage standing in front of everyone.”

Final Words

Following the event, there is unanimous agreement amongst the students that they would all have the confidence to perform on such a large stage again. Great bravery team!

Izzy and Lacey finished by saying:

“Thank you to Mr Brodey and Miss Smalley for the opportunity to perform in Plymouth, it was really fun.”

Year 10 Compete in UK Space Agency ‘SatelLife2022 Challenge’

Over 100 Year 10 students took part in the SatelLife2022 Challenge today as they searched for new, innovative ways in which satellites could improve life on Earth.

Promoted as a nationwide search for young space entrepreneurs, the competition is open to ages 11 – 22 and has a prize fund of up to £50,000 available to turn students’ ideas into reality.

The day kickstarted with an assembly which provided a broad overview of satellites, their existing uses and the all-important judging criteria. At 10am, the students then split into teams of no more than 4, all searching for the next brainchild invention that could transform the world!

Dave Pollard, our VIP visitor and judge from SpacePort Cornwall (Newquay) explained:

“Today is all about demonstrating to students how satellites are used on a daily basis and how they can be used in the future for the greater good through innovation.”

A Promising Track Record

Penrice Academy has tasted success in previous years of the competition when, in 2020, Grace, Emmy and Maddie won a prize of £5,000 with their concept of a festival wrist band called Safely. Their idea, judged to be one of the best in the competition, was a wrist band that could be used for payments, emergency GPS locating, and drinks spike testing, helping women to feel safer in large crowds.

The trio of girls were then given the opportunity to take their idea to meet the dragons (leaders in the field of satellite applications) and have opportunities such as mentoring, visits to satellite factories and legal advice to further develop their idea.

Elsewhere, at one of our other CELT schools in Newquay, four teenage boys won an investment of £7,500 in 2018, concepting an app to find public toilets. The toilets could be rated by users, and the idea was particularly helpful for people who have hidden disabilities such as inflammatory bowel diseases.

Results to Follow…

The day finished with a series of presentations delivered by the teams of students with a judging panel consisting of visiting guest speaker Dave Pollard, Mr Round and Miss Garrod.

The shortlisted entries will be announced next week so stay tuned!

Miss Garrod, Science Teacher at Penrice, finished by saying:

“Our students did really well today. They came up with some really imaginative, innovative ideas and solutions to everyday problems. We’re really proud of the work they have put in and we look forward to sharing the shortlisted competition entries next week.”

School Closure – Friday 18 February 2022

Dear Parents/Carers

As I am sure you aware, a Red Weather Warning has been issued for tomorrow meaning that there is a danger to life from flying debris. The current forecast indicates that winds as strong as 83mph may occur in the St Austell area. As such, we have taken the decision that due to the risk for your children of travelling to and from school, Penrice Academy will be closed to all students and staff on Friday 18th February.

Remote learning will be set via Show My Homework following the four lesson timetable tomorrow.

Students in Year 10 who were due to take their History exam will have this rescheduled to the morning of Tuesday 1st March.

Year 11 students were due to have a Silent Disco, this will be reorganised as soon as possible.

Once again we thank you for your understanding and support in yet another unprecedented situation.

Year 8 Girls’ Team Compete in FIRST® LEGO® League STEM Challenge

A team of Year 8 girls presented live to a panel of judges earlier this morning as part of their entry into the FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge.

The FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge develops STEM learning in children aged 9-16, inspiring young people to develop their critical thinking, coding and design skills through hands-on STEM learning and robotics.

The 7-strong team of Isla, Molly, Meredith, Emelia, Tabitha, Amelie and Chloe, have all met on numerous occasions after school in preparation for today, researching for both aspects of the competition – the Robot Game and the Innovation Project.

Isla and Chloe testing the team robot

Mr Johnson, Teacher of Computer Science at Penrice, said:

“We are actively trying to get more girls into STEM and Computer Science, not just here at Penrice, but nationally. We decided to take part in this competition as Key Stage 3 is where we can lay the foundations, teaching essential skills like coding and critical thinking.”

The girls first delivered their presentation on clean water, demonstrating how technical innovation can lead to major breakthroughs benefitting the whole world.

Team member Chloe said:

“I feel we did really well. We were all very worried during rehearsals; I was panicking all breaktime today, but now we have done it we have overcome our fears and feel a lot more confident.”

She added:

“We all took it in turns to speak to the judges and answer any questions they had and we all spoke an even amount.”

The Year 8 girls’ team presenting to the judging panel

The presentation was followed by a live robot test, showcasing a Lego robot the girls had hand-built and programmed to complete specific tasks, such as emptying Lego cargo containers.

Isla, one of the robot programmers, highlighted the difficulty of the project and said:

“There was lots of testing during the coding. Trying to get the robot to stop when it detected an object on its sensor was a real challenge. When we figured it out it was a real breakthrough, ‘eureka’ moment for the team! Programming a robotic arm to move up and down was another big test for all of us.”

The team’s robot in action

Mr Johnson finished by saying:

“The girls have done brilliantly. We have all been working together for a number of weeks and to see the end product today is fantastic. The girls have shown great resilience too; the burst water pipe yesterday meant that they lost crucial preparation time, yet they have all remained level-headed and worked tirelessly this morning to catch up and be ready for the judges – great determination.”

Judges’ Feedback

Confidence was brilliant and the knowledge of their design exceeded expectations.

Girl Power!!

Minimal input from teachers. Pupils knew exactly what they were talking about!

Thank You

Finally, a big thank you must go to Soroptimist International – St Austell for their support in sponsoring our team in this competition.

School Closure – 9 February 2022

Dear Parents,

We are pleased to inform you that the mains water supply to the school has now been fixed. Our Site Team have checked over all of the facilities and have confirmed that clean water is now running as usual.

Thank you to parents and pupils for your patience and understanding throughout today.

We look forward to seeing everyone again tomorrow morning (Thursday 10 February, 8:30am registration) for a normal school day.

Year 9 & 10 Take On National UKMT Maths Challenge

There have been faces of concentration in the computer room over the past two days as our Year 9 and Year 10 students have competed in the national UKMT Maths Challenge.

The UKMT Maths Challenge is an annual event that Penrice is proud to take part in and acts as an enrichment opportunity for our students who compete in a 60-minute test involving a series of problem solving questions. The online competition encourages mathematical reasoning, precision of thought, and fluency in using basic mathematical techniques to solve interesting problems.

Annually, the UKMT have over 700,000 entries for these challenges making it the most popular school mathematical event across the country. We run two events, the Intermediate Challenge (Year 9 and Year 10) in February, and the Junior Challenge (Year 7 and Year 8) in April.

This year we had 120 students take part in the Intermediate Challenge in a bid to achieve one of the prestigious awards.

Mrs Johns, Deputy Head of Maths, said:

“The students have put fantastic effort in over the last 48 hours and we wish them the best of luck for their results.”

We will share news of any prestigious Gold, Silver and Bronze awards when the results are released later in the year!

Year 10 Catering & Hospitality Students Taste Army Life

Year 10’s Catering and Hospitality students were visited by the Army this morning as their cooking skills were put to the test using real Army ration packs.

The workshop began with a presentation on Army careers, focussing on the Royal Logistics Corp and what life is like being a Chef in the Army. Students learnt how the Royal Logistics Corp is the largest division of the Army, made up of 12 divisions, with one being Chef (Catering).

The class was then asked to demonstrate how they might operate in the field with 10-man ration packs. The challenge was duly accepted!

Racing against the clock, students produced some fantastic dishes with meatballs and chilli con carne featuring as well as other tasty delights.

When asked about Army careers, LCpl Ryan Goodwin, who is also a former Penrice pupil, said:

“Use your time in school wisely and gather as much information as you can about careers in the Army, including use of the Army Jobs website. This will help you to make an informed decision.”

Mrs Sainsbury, Catering Teacher, said:

“Today was an opportunity for our students to find out how the skills they are learning can be used in real career paths such as the Army. The Year 10s participated really well and were thoroughly engaged throughout the workshop.”

Character Development Day Kickstarts the Spring Term

Today we welcomed back all year groups to Penrice Academy as the Spring Term got underway with our Character Development Day. As you may be aware, character development is a big part of our mission here at Penrice; we want all of our students to develop as well-rounded individuals with education both inside and outside of the classroom.

‘Character is a combination of the traits that set people apart so they can achieve their dreams’

With this in mind, there were a wide range of activities in place across all ages today with mystery challenges, VIP visitors and insights from Penrice alumni.

Year 7 – Courage

Year 7 were challenged to identify their weaknesses and think about how they are going to turn them into strengths through courage. The focus was not just limited to academic weaknesses, but the wider picture too, such as social development and friendship groups. Year 11 were on hand to help out with short 60-second videos on how they have shown courage during their time at Penrice.

A highlight for Year 7 was undoubtedly the blindfolded assault course where the pupils we challenged to work in pairs, guiding each other through the course.

Year 8 – Citizenship

Year 8’s start to the day didn’t quite go to plan. With the weather forecast showing Period 1 as the only window of opportunity for clear skies, the year group headed out to take on their fun run as part of their learning surrounding local citizenship, raising money for the school’s chosen charity for 2022 (the RNLI). Unfortunately, in true Cornish fashion, the heavens opened as soon as the starting whistle blew! We commend our Year 8 students for showing great determination and resilience in completing the challenge despite the elements being against them.

Later in the day, students were set a challenge by Waterhaul, a company in Newquay, who turn beach waste into sunglasses. The students were tasked with creating a logo and a slogan to put on bins around the school site. They were also challenged to take part in a litter pick.

Year 9 – Choices

Year 9 spent the day on getting GCSE-ready. They were asked to think about their GCSE choices and, with January being the month for new resolutions, they were asked to think about positive habits they can adopt in their learning moving forward.

A key highlight from the day was a Microsoft Teams seminar with a wide range of Penrice alumni, discussing career paths and choices. Guest speakers included Richard Whitehouse – Local Democracy Reporter for Reach PLC (Cornwall Live), Stefan Richards – Music Teacher at Looe Community Academy, Joanne Retallick – Registered Veterinary Nurse at Penmellyn Veterinary Group, Tom Liddicoat – Health Improvement Practitioner at Healthy Cornwall and many more.

The main takeaway from the session was for our students to remain curious and open-minded when considering careers, trying to expose themselves to a range of experiences whilst also not being afraid to fail.

Year 10 – Civic Responsibility

Year 10 learnt about the power of voice and the privilege of living in a democracy. The day started off with some teaching of the context and history of Britain’s democracy, including its struggles, remembering the times at which many have had to die to protect our democracy. The students were then given a unique opportunity to meet with Steve Double, our local MP from the Conservative party, asking him some challenging questions including:

  • Should the age of voting be lowered to 16?
  • Should there be a tourist tax in Cornwall? And…
  • Should there be a new hospital built in Cornwall?

The day ended with Year 10 being challenged to call out things that aren’t right, to have a voice and not be a bystander.

Ms Coleman, Deputy Headteacher, finished by saying

“The level of student engagement has been fantastic today. This is not a one off, standalone day. Character is something that we will be working on throughout the year and this is simply the start. We look forward to building on the momentum of today as the year progresses.”

Year 11 – Careers

And let’s not forget our Year 11s! They spent the day with Mrs Lorraine Turner, our Head of Careers, focussing on their next steps when they leave us later in 2022.

We look forward to seeing everyone on Monday when we return to the regular timetable.

Return to School – January 2022 COVID Testing

Ahead of students return to school in January, the Department for Education have requested that all secondary schools test students in person, with the aim to reduce transmission and increase testing uptake. We are one of a small number of schools that have been able to secure PCR tests for our students to further improve the accuracy of our testing programme. Testing remains voluntary, but we would strongly encourage all students to come into school for tests to help keep our community as safe as possible

To facilitate the enhanced in-school testing, students will work from home on Wednesday 5th and Thursday 6th January, with work provided on Show My Homework. They will then be able to attend in school for their test on the dates below. All year groups will return to in school learning on Friday 7th January.

Return to School Testing Overview

Wednesday 5th January 2022

In School PCR Tests for Years 7, 8 & 11.
All Students learning at home – Just attend for test.

Thursday 6th January 2022

In School PCR Tests for Years 9 & 10
All Students learning at home – Just attend for test

Friday 7th January 2022

All Students return to in school learning

Monday 10th January 2022

All Students in school learning (Week A)

Testing Timetable

Wednesday 5th January 2022
8:30  7SA & 7AF
8:50  7IHC & 7SS
9:10  7RW & 7JS
9:30  7LC & 7FB
9:50  7CB & 7KH
10:10  8LP & 8JS
10:30  8JH & 8AJ
10:50  8RC & 8DJ
11:10  8SW & 8AS
11:30  8SM & 8ST
11:50  11EB & 11AT
12:10  11PB & 11DH
12:30  11TG & 11ZG
12:50  11TD & 11HR
13:10  11EC & 11KT
Thursday 6th January 2022
8:30  10SL & 10VT
8:50  10JN & 10SSH
9:10  10MM & 10JK
9:30  10AB & 10GW
9:50  10ELC & 10AS
10:10  9RW & 9LM
10:30  9KW & 9DW
10:50  9AM & 9LG
11:10  9GS & 9NK
11:30  9FS & 9AH


  • My child has recently tested positive for Covid-19, what shall I do?
    If your child has had a positive PCR test on or after Friday 8th October 2021, you will not need to attend the testing in January. Any positive tests prior to the 8th October should still attend for testing.
  • My child will still be aged 11 on the testing days, what shall I do?
    Students aged 11 should still come in for a lateral flow test only.

Consent Form for Dual PCR/LFD Testing

Further Information

Year 9 Take On Energy Quest Workshop

Year 9 have participated in an immersive Science workshop led by Tomorrows Engineers called Energy Quest over the past two days. This was a really exciting workshop giving Year 9 students the chance to find out all about sustainable energy and learn about associated engineering careers, whilst trying to solve the problem of how to power a mobile phone with only the equipment you might find in the bottom of a rucksack.

Year 9 unlocked their inner engineers and came up with some truly innovative suggestions to the problem!

VIDEO: Mary Poppins Set Design Team Need Your Help

Penrice Academy’s Mary Poppins will be performing on the 22nd,23rd, and 24th of March.

With assistance from Ms Morse, the set design team have been working on adapting the script in a real performance. The Media Team is going to be interviewing the Behind-the-Scenes teams throughout the year to show their involvement in the production, and the process behind the amazing scenery they have been creating!

They have some special requests in preparation for the main show. Can you help the Mary Poppins Set Design Team with some props on their wishlist?

Lights, camera, action!

Report by Adriana
(Year 8 – Student Media Team)

Contact Mrs Morse via: if you have any of the named items!

Prop Wishlist

A full list is below:

  • Red Scarves
  • Holdall
  • Smart Coat
  • Briefcase
  • Umbrella
  • Fancy Tea Set
  • Large Metal Utensils
  • Metal Kettle
  • Tea Trolley
  • Plastic Flowers
  • Bunting
  • Baskets
  • Picnic Blankets
  • Parasols
  • A Message Bag
  • A Policeman Hat and Jacket
  • A Locket With A Chain
  • Colourful Clothing
  • Fridge Magnets
  • Old Fashioned Desks
  • Carpet Bag
  • Oven Mits
  • Layered Teacake Stand
  • Medicine Bottles
  • Old Fashioned Sweet Jar
  • Pink and Blue Single Bedding
  • Top Hats
  • A Feather Duster
  • A Large Artificial Pot Plant
  • Hatstand
  • Waistcoats
  • Flatcaps
  • A Rocking Horse
  • Brightly Coloured Children’s Toys

Keanu [Year 8] Crowned Junior National Judo Champion

Penrice Academy student Keanu (Year 8) enjoyed a weekend to remember after winning Junior Under 50kg Gold at the BJC Open National Championships in Kettering on Sunday.

Even more impressively, Keanu won all of his fights by Ippon; the judo equivalent of a knockout punch in boxing.

Keanu’s memorable run to title glory was very swift, with his quarter-final lasting 20 seconds, his semi-final lasting 60 seconds and his final being concluded in only 30 seconds.

Despite only being 12 years old, Keanu is already a green belt which is seen as a mid to high level rank on the journey to becoming a black belt.

Aaron Marks, Director of Sport and PE at Penrice Academy, said:

Keanu embodies all of our school values of Pride, Respect and Success. He is extremely dedicated to all the various sports that he represents the school in. He has the utmost respect for his friends, teachers and community. We are exceptionally proud of him, and wish to congratulate him on his most recent success.

Keanu currently trains with the Regional England Development Squad (REDS) and feels this has contributed towards his development at such a young age.

He explained:

“For example, in our last session with REDS we spent one hour on technique, one hour on randori [free-style practise], followed by another two hours focussed on groundwork.”

Moving forward, Keanu has already turned his focus to competing in The English Open in 2022, taking place on the weekend of 4th-5th December in Sheffield.

The upcoming competition represents a whole new challenge for Keanu with the minimum entry level required as a green belt.

Keanu finished with a message of gratitude for those who have helped him on his journey so far. He said:

“I would like to thank my dad as he covers a lot of miles in taking me to the various events. I must also mention Polkyth Judo Club who I have trained with since I was 4 ½ years old, so a big thanks to my coaches Ronan Byrne as well as Danny Byrne. Drake Judo Club in Plymouth have also been very supportive, offering extra training opportunities and my whole family in general have all been a positive influence.”

Harry and Gemma Lead Year 7 to Victory in Times Table Rockstars Competition

After a hotly contested competition between Year 7 and Year 8, it is our newest cohort of students that clinched the Times Table Rockstars title this academic year – congratulations Year 7!

Times Table Rockstars is a maths competition where you play to see how many sums you can answer in different timeframes to gain points.

Two Year 7 students in particular are worthy of a special mention, having made outstanding score contributions to the Year 7 victory.

Harry (7RW) scored a whopping 60,667 points to be crowned Top Boy, with Gemma (7CB) in close competition with 55,343 points to win the title of Top Girl.

The pair’s effort and contribution to the Year 7 victory cannot be overstated, with the total score from all students amounting to 351,667. Now, if our maths is correct, that’s an outstanding 33% contribution towards the total Year 7 score just between the pair of them!

Harry said:

“I particularly liked the different game modes. There was ‘garage mode’ – where you get as many coins as you can, and ‘studio mode’ – where you try and get the fastest speed possible answering sums.”

He continued:

“It was a good feeling to know I am top boy. There are a lot of students in Year 7 so to be top of the leader board is really nice.”

After being congratulated on her achievement, Gemma commented:

“We studied the times table at my primary school and we used to have competitions with the class next door. So when sir introduced the Times Table Rockstars competition, I thought I should have a go at this one! I’ve always loved maths so I played it whenever I had any free time. It has helped me to improve my speed a lot.”

In addition to certificates being given to the top year group and the top students, there was also an award for the top maths class (07DP), scoring an average points per user of 11,174 – great work!

In Year 8, Felipe was the highest scoring whilst Meredith was the top scoring girl.

Penrice Maths Teacher Mr Stokes finished by saying:

We like the fun, competitive element of Times Table Rockstars. Well done to all of the students that took part in this year’s competition; it was great to see so many pupils involved.

Author and Storyteller Katy Cawkwell visits Penrice Academy

Devon-based author and storyteller Katy Cawkwell visited Penrice Academy on Friday 12 November in order to lead workshops with the Year 7 and Year 10 students.

Katy’s workshops are fast gaining a reputation amongst the school community and English teacher Mr Newton was keen to share Katy’s infectious enthusiasm for storytelling with Penrice students.

Mr Newton explained:

“The whole idea of today’s visit is to spark an interest in storytelling in our students. English can often be stereotyped as being, dry, dull and boring, so we want to challenge this concept. We want to get our pupils excited about literature and take English outside of the classroom.”

During the morning, in the first of her storytelling performances, Katy brought to life the story of Odysseus and Penelope; one of the oldest stories in Europe. The story was chosen as it accompanied pupils’ studies of Greek myths in English.

Katy explained:

“It’s often a story that goes down well with young students in Year 7 with Odysseus and the cyclops which is exciting and grizzly. You’ve also got a really strong female character (Penelope) in this story which isn’t always the case in older stories.”

She added:

The real power of storytelling is the storyteller’s ability to enter the world of the story, see it as if it is going on around them, and communicate that to the audience in a way that creates pictures in everyone’s minds.

In the afternoon session, Katy plans to captivate a Year 10 audience as she tells the tales of some of Shakespeare’s plays to help students visualise the plots of relevant GCSE stories.

She explains:

“It’s not trying to re-enact the whole play. It’s about trying to take the story within the play and tell it really clearly and dramatically so that it brings it to life for students and helps with their understanding of key texts.”

Katy has a wealth of experience in leading storytelling workshops for schools having started almost 25 years ago.

When asked to give one piece of advice to aspiring young storytellers, Katy said:

The key to storytelling is practise. Find opportunities to give storytelling a go with friends and family; it can be a great low-key way to improve your skills and you will learn as you go. You can practise at home, on a family walk, or on a long car journey; there are so many opportunities.”

Penrice Academy Remembers

On Thursday 11 November, Penrice Academy staff and students came together in the garden square for their annual Service of Remembrance.

Students from all year groups and a variety of organisations – from Scouts and Guides to Army and Sea Cadets – paid their respects to service men and women lost in combat around the world, dressed in full uniform.

The ceremony started with The Last Post, performed by Music teacher Mr Jones, followed by a poignant 2-minute silence observed by staff and students.

Students within their various organisations then took turns in laying wooden crosses by the memorial that contained individual messages written by tutor groups across the school. Inscriptions included promises such as: ‘we will forever be grateful’, and ‘Lest we forget’.

Mr Johnson, English Teacher and Scout Leader, said:

“We are incredibly proud of the students. They have done themselves proud and the school proud by choosing to wear their uniforms and represent their organisations. They have shown real respect today at the commemoration ceremony.”

Race Across the World 2021-22

We return to school after the half-term break full of optimism and excitement as we launch our latest extra-curricular initiative: Race Across the World.

Students in Years 7, 8 and 9 will embark on an educational journey through Europe, South America and Africa respectively.

Miss Garrod is on hand to explain more…

Students Shine at Open Events

Senior Penrice students have been busy showcasing the academy this side of half term as we opened our doors to welcome over 450 families for guided tours.

Year 11 prefects acted as outstanding role models and tour guides during our two open evenings on Thursday 23 September 2021 and Tuesday 28 September 2021. The school was a hive of activity with dissection in science, song rehearsals for Mary Poppins in drama, Mars Rover Robots in Computer Science, earthquakes in Geography and so much more!

A special thank you must also go to our Year 10 students who have contributed massively over the past 2 weeks, greeting approximately 175 families during daytime tours, allowing prospective Year 6 students to see the school in action!

The positive atmosphere around the campus has been tangible and the tours simply would not have been possible without the impeccable and welcoming attitude of our student volunteers.

Visitor Feedback

“We loved the tour of the school, it was very impressive. The prefects were amazing guides. My son can’t wait to come in September.”

“10/10 from my daughter. We were very impressed. The prefects were lovely and very patient”

“We would just like to say a huge ‘Thank you’ to your team and your pupils for putting on such a fantastic Open Evening Event last night. We were shown around by two lovely Year 11 girls. They were very friendly and engaging. Our daughter came away from the Open Evening in no doubt that Penrice is the secondary school for her!”

Well done to all involved.

Sports Report – Week Beginning Monday 20 September

An excellent week of Sports Fixtures with Penrice students participating in Rugby, Netball and Hockey matches away at Truro School. There were boys playing Rugby in Year 7, 8 and 9. We also had girls playing Hockey in Years 7 and 8, plus students in Year 9, 10 and 11 playing Netball.

The Year 8 Boys was the Rugby game of the day which ended in a thrilling draw. There were also some excellent performances in the Hockey, with the Year 7 and Year 8 Hockey girls playing their first games for Penrice, and in the Netball, where there were four teams including the two Under 14 and two Under 16 teams. The best game was one of the Under 16 teams who lost by just a single point.

Next week, our sports players are making the short trip to Brannel for our next set of fixtures. We have Rugby matches and Netball matches played across various year groups. Students will be leaving Penrice at 2:55pm and returning at 5pm. Training for all of the sports clubs continues as usual next week.

We look forward to introducing more prospective parents to Sports and PE at Penrice at the school open evening on Tuesday.
Sports Players of the Week

Boys: Bailey (Year 8) – Scored 4 fantastic tries in an excellent whole team performance where the team showed great togetherness and determination to draw in the Year 8 Rugby match.
Girls: Poppy (Year 11) – Brilliant work rate and a strong, solid performance from a really competitive game at centre.

Should you wish to let us know of a student’s sporting achievements out of school, please email them to

GCSE Results 2021

There was excitement and tears of joy at Penrice Academy today as the Class of 2021 opened their GCSE results.

National GCSE Exams were cancelled this academic year due to Covid-19 restrictions, meaning that this year’s results were based on a range of evidence collected by the school including mock exams and in class assessments, moderated and standardised internally.

Miss Gambier, Headteacher at Penrice Academy, explained:

“We have undertaken a thorough and robust process, firmly rooted in evidence, to ensure these grades are as fair and accurate as possible. Students have worked incredibly hard, in exceptional circumstances this academic year, studying throughout the global pandemic, at times working remotely. Today’s results are a testament to their hard work and dedicated attitude throughout their 5 year journey with us at Penrice. We are so proud of all our students and wish them all the best in their future endeavours.”

She continued:

“A special mention must also go to all of our staff and indeed all those working in schools across the country who have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to support and guide students through these uncertain times, teaching remotely and navigating a unique assessment system this year. Well done to all involved in making this year possible and massive congratulations to the Class of 2021!”


“I got much higher results than what I was expecting, I’m over the moon. I’m really happy that I passed my A/S level further maths a year early. Mrs Johns has been terrific, so I say a big thank you to her. It was an amazing opportunity and she dedicated a lot of time to me when she didn’t have to.”

Dillon next heads to Exeter Maths School to study his A-Levels.


“My results are better than I thought they would be. I am delighted with the three Sciences (Biology, Chemistry, Physics) where I achieved 9s in all of them (the highest grade possible). I’d also like to say a special thank you to my English teacher Mrs Taylor who helped me to get a 9.”

Ocean next heads to Truro College Chemistry, Biology and Geography.


Since joining the school 5 years ago, Dominic has demonstrated an excellent work ethic and this is evident in his well-deserved GCSE results. Dominic is a determined and resilient young man who is positive in his outlook and an ambassador of the school. His cheery disposition, tenacity and love of learning will ensure his successes continue at the Royal National College for the Blind in Hereford, where he will carry on his studies Post 16 and have the opportunity to develop his independence into adulthood.

“I am proud of my results and what I have achieved. I’m delighted with Maths which I have passed.”

We wish you well Dominic and hope that you keep us posted with your future achievements!


Ellie’s jaw dropped when she opened her results, achieving the top grade in all subjects.

“I got 9s in everything which I definitely wasn’t expected. I put a lot of effort into my GCSEs but I never expected this. I just want to say thank you. We’ve had it difficult being in lockdown for two of our academic years, but the school has managed to put together amazing teaching over the whole time; because of this I’ve managed to get these results.”

Ellie next heads to Truro College to study A-Levels in English Literature, French and History.


Having only joined Penrice at the end of Year 9 Michaela has excelled in her GCSEs and exceeded all expectations. Michaela embraced everything Penrice had to offer and has flourished, whilst bringing smiles and laughter to her fellow students and staff.

“I did a lot better than I thought I would, especially in Geography. I thought I’d get a 5 but I got a 7! If I were to say a special mention to specific teachers then we’d be here all day – a special thanks must go to all staff. If it wasn’t for them”

Michaela next heads to Truro College to study A-Level French, Chemistry and Illustration & Digital Graphics.

National Performance Comparison

The following figures are from the most recent sat examinations in summer 2019 (pre-covid).

Progress 8 Score

Penrice Academy: 0.49 (above average)
National: 0.0

Attainment 8 Score

Penrice Academy: 53
National: 46.7

Percentage of pupils achieving a strong pass (grade 5 or above) in English and Maths

Penrice Academy: 52%
National: 43%

Percentage of pupils entering the English Baccalaureate

Penrice Academy: 12%
National: 40%

EBacc Average Point Score

Penrice Academy: 4.45
National: 4.05

Pupils staying in education or entering employment

Penrice Academy: 93%
National: 94%

Compare Data with Other Schools

Students Help to Renovate the Student & Family Centre

Thank you to all of the students who have helped us renovate the Student & Family Centre this week as part of Curriculum Enrichment Week – it looks amazing and even includes a new home for the school tortoise!

Ms Adams attended the official unveiling ceremony to cut the ribbon on her penultimate day in school after over 20 years of service.

A special mention also goes to Maizie in Year 8 who painted the entire chalet on her own.

VIDEO: Behind the Scenes with the Year 7 Media Team

Article written by Meredith
(Year 7 – Media Team)

The Year 7 Media Team (Meredith, Isla, Molly, Adriana and Emelia) have been working hard to showcase all the skills they have learnt this year.

Throughout the year they have filmed, edited and interviewed students and staff in their roles as part of the Penrice team across the school. For one final challenge before the end of term, we helped the team to produce a short video documenting their hard work and what goes on behind the scenes. Take a look at the final product below…


The team are looking forward to working together next year.

Students Celebrate Success at Lit REBEL Awards Ceremony

Our inspirational young readers celebrated their passion for the books they’ve loved reading throughout their lunchtimes this half term, giving book reviews and presentations to our senior members of staff and heads of years earlier today.

The event started with an awards ceremony which was then followed by some student speeches and a pizza party. There was also a special thank you to Mrs Jones, our literacy support specialist at Penrice, who has helped to coordinate the Lit REBEL programme.

Mrs Jones explained:

The Lit REBEL initiative stands for Reading Every Book Extends Language. Aside from encouraging young pupils to read, the aim of the programme is not just about reading any book, it is about reading different types of books and books from different sources to help the pupils widen their vocabulary.

Congratulations to all those students who received certificates today.

Pentewan Win Sports Day 2021

It was a lesson of never giving up for our winners of Sports Day yesterday. Congratulations to team Pentewan who, after being bottom of the scoreboard at lunchtime, had a resurgent afternoon to secure the trophy.

1st: Par Bay
2nd: Carlyon Bay
3rd: Charlestown
4th: Mevagissey
5th: Porthpean
6th: Pentewan

1st: Pentewan
2nd: Par Bay
3rd: Charlestown
4th: Carlyon Bay
5th: Porthpean
6th: Mevagissey

And it wouldn’t be a Sports Day without the traditional staff events at the end of the day! A big thank you to the PE team, the ground staff and all of the teachers who made today possible.

New Head Boy and Head Girl Announced

Penrice Academy are delighted to announce the appointment of Jake and Freya as the new Head Boy and Head Girl for the 2021/22 academic year.

The announcement follows a lengthy, three-stage selection process which involved applications, interviews and team building challenges.

Freya said:

I hope that Jake and I can be the best examples of Head Girls and Head Boys, particularly to the new Year 6 students who are starting Year 7 in September.

Jake added:

I hope we can inspire others to be stood where we are today and for them to try as hard as they can to be the best they can be throughout their time at Penrice.

Paralympian Visits Penrice Academy

It was an honour to meet Great Britain Paralympian triathlete David Hill yesterday as he led a PE coaching session with our separate Year 7 & 8 girls’ bubbles as part of the Healthy Lifestyles Champions initiative from Youth Sport Trust

David’s visit marked the pinnacle of a seven week after school sports programme for aspiring Year 8 sports coaches. Previous sessions had included Rounders, Badminton, Athletics, Capture the Flag and other fun, active games.
The Year 8 students have gained valued experience from David, learning how to coach and lead PE sessions with younger students.

Pupils Take On Rainbow Run Challenge for Children’s Hospice South West

Throughout last week, students across all year groups took part in the Children’s Hospice South West’s Rainbow Run challenge during their PE lessons. The event was a huge success and thoroughly enjoyed by all that embraced the challenge. There was a real community spirit and a sea of rainbow colours running around our 1-mile circular route.

Clare Razzell, PE Teacher and Head of Year 10, would like to say a massive heartfelt thank you to each and every student that took part with a positive, smiley face. Super proud as always to be part of TEAM Penrice!

On Friday, for the final day of the Rainbow Runs, Kiley Pearce and Bernadette Chambers visited us from Cornwall Hospice South West who officially started each Rainbow Run. The big reveal with regards to miles covered and money raised will be announced in the near future. Thank you to the entire Penrice Academy community for supporting this challenge.

We’ve done the maths and can confirm that Team Penrice have raised an incredible £1153.22 plus 4,500km towards CHSW’s 30,000km target!
Thank you for your support.

Year 10 Undergo Phase II of the Senior Prefect Selection

Twelve shortlisted Year 10 students spent an afternoon at Carlyon Bay beach on Monday 14 June as they undertook team building and leadership exercises led by Sweat Cornwall.

The group enjoyed 8 different challenges where they not only got to work together to further develop our strong Team Year 10 ethos, but also had the opportunity to showcase their individual leadership skills and qualities.

Commenting on the selection process, Mrs Razzell, Head of Year 10, said:

“I am not necessarily looking for the three strongest individuals, I am looking for the three individuals that work best as a team.”

There will now be a selection process where 6 of the 12 will reach the interview stage.

Mrs Razzell said:

“Team Year 10 are an exceptional year group. Thank you for making what is already a challenging decision even more challenging. I feel they have all fully embraced it – they’ve come with the right attitude and approach and I wish them all the best for Phase III.”

Years 7 & 8 Enjoy Curriculum Enrichment Days

Years 7 and 8 took time out from their usual school timetable from Wednesday 9 June to Friday 11 June in order to take part in Curriculum Enrichment Days.

The programme included a range of activities, including one full enterprise day focussing on responsible consumerism, along with two days of life skills workshops including first aid and lifesaving, alcohol, drugs, online safety, and positive relationships.

Enterprise Days

Wednesday 9 June saw Year 8 take part in the Enterprise Day focusing on sustainability with topics including:
– Renewable energy
– Fast fashion
– Food

The students learnt how effective campaign skills can influence decision makers and were challenged to create campaign materials to raise awareness of their chosen hot topic, developing employability skills including teamwork, communication skills, research skills and group presentation skills. The day culminated with a series of presentations to the whole year group in the assembly hall.

Congratulations go to form tutors 8RE, 8WB and 8LM who finished first, second and third respectively, securing a special day trip to Tregothnan Estate. Penrice Academy would also like to say a special thanks to Darcie Dawe from Tregothnan Estate who assisted in the delivery of the Year 8 Enterprise Day and acted as a judge on the presentations.

8RE Winners

The same format was then repeated on Thursday 10 June for the Year 7s with form tutors 7AS, 7RC and 7JH finishing 1st, 2nd and 3rd. Thanks go to Francesco Rigolli from Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Careers Hub who acted as a guest judge.

The next key milestone in the provision of careers guidance comes in Year 10 when the students will embark on their work experience placements next month.

Life Skills

In addition to the Enterprise Days, students also enjoyed a range of workshops on key life skills.

One particular highlight was the First Aid and CPR training led by Ms McGrath. Workshops on alcohol, drugs, online safety, and positive relationships were also included.

VIDEO: Isaac (Year 10) Releases Song for G7 Summit

Huge congratulations to Isaac in Year 10 who has had his song, ‘Kids Like Me’, selected by Cornwall Music Education Hub to be part of ‘7 Songs for G7’.

The collection consists of seven unique, diverse songs, all home-grown, composed by Cornish composers from the age of 15 through to well-known Cornish songwriters and composers.

We caught up with Isaac earlier this week to interview him about his toe-tapping earworm…

The lyrics and chords to ‘Kids Like Me’ can be found on the Cornwall Music Education Hub here.

Penrice Bid Farewell to Year 11

There were heartfelt hugs and tears on Friday 28 May as Penrice Academy held a special leavers’ day for Year 11.

The day started with a year group assembly at 8.30 where students were shown pictures from various highlights during their time at Penrice alongside a special performance from the Penrice band led by Mr Newton!

The students then enjoyed a silent disco in the sports hall followed by food in the form of a pizza van before departing the site through a guard of honour, led by our Year 10 students.

Lucy Gambier, Headteacher said:

On behalf of all of us at Penrice, I wish every member of the Class of 2021 all the very best as they embark on the next stage of their lives, and I hope that college and future studies go well. We look forward to hearing about all the amazing things they get up to and hope to see them again as they inspire the next generation of Penrice students.

Results Day 2021 will be on Thursday 12 August. On this day, students will be able to come in and collect results from 10.15am. (Providing government restrictions remain as they are now).

Superb work in Year 9 Art Project

Year 9 Art & Design students have been very busy this week designing and constructing their own clay sculpture, for their ‘Surface’ project. Their work was inspired by the artists Peter Randall-Page, Luciana Rondolini, Kate Malone and Yayoi Kusama, as well as incorporating ideas, skills and techniques they have learnt this year.

Their clay sculptures explore form, structure, scale, pattern and texture. Students were focussing today on decorating and embellishing their work, using a wide range of marking making tools and 2D relief techniques.

Their teacher, Ms Elliot, said:

“I have been so impressed with how creative and imaginative the Year 9’s have been in their design and clay construction work. Everyone has designed and created something very different, quirky and unique, based on their own original ideas. Super work Year 9!”

Their work will now be put into the kiln and students will then glaze their clay sculptures next week.

National Citizen Service Visit to Launch Summer Programme

Last week, a team from the National Citizen Service (NCS) joined us to promote this summer’s programme that is now taking bookings. Year 11 students have a fabulous opportunity to take part in a two week programme that includes outdoor activities, a community project and much more! Students from Penrice are regulars on the NCS programme every year and, judging by the sign up forms this week, this year will be no exception.

To find out more about the NCS programme, go to

Penrice Academy recognised for outstanding provision of mental health and wellbeing support

There was cause for celebration at Penrice Academy this week after it was announced that they were the first ever UK mainstream secondary school to achieve the Trauma and Mental Health Informed Schools Award.

Accredited by Trauma Informed Schools (TIS), the award recognises Penrice Academy for outstanding provision of mental health and wellbeing support.

A trauma informed school is one that is ‘able to support children and teenagers who suffer with trauma or mental health problems and whose troubled behaviour acts as a barrier to learning.’

Penrice now joins the ranks of only a handful of primary schools and a few specialist education providers up and down the country to be recognised with this accolade.

An extract from the report reads:

Promoting positive mental health and supporting vulnerable children and young people is at the heart of the work of Penrice Academy. It is embedded in the culture and the ethos of the school. Senior leaders understand that this has to be in place before effective learning can take place. It is key as to why the school achieves the outcomes it does.

The school’s official inspection took place on Thursday 29 April with the TIS inspector observing the school’s ethos and atmosphere, performing lesson drop-ins, conducting student panels, staff panels, two focus groups, and a meeting with the Principal and the designated safeguarding lead.

Mrs Kirsty Taylor, Head of Year 7 and Emotional Mental Health and Well-being Lead at Penrice Academy said:

“We are delighted to receive this recognition from TIS. For us, as a school in Cornwall, to be ahead of the game at something as important as mental health and wellbeing is imperative.

Helping young people to become more resilient and to help them build that range of strategies to cope makes a huge difference. We all get anxious, we all have times when things don’t quite go right, and to teach the strategies for how to cope during challenging times is a skill for life.

The Trauma Informed School’s programme has acted as the scaffolding to support the existing mental health and wellbeing infrastructure within Penrice Academy, ensuring that everything is in place to support our young people.”

Trauma Informed Schools UK are the workforce training provider for HeadStart Kernow, part of a £9.8 million Big Lottery funded programme aimed at developing resilience and mental wellbeing in young people aged 10-16 years.

The project was launched off the back of research which identified rising numbers of children presenting mental health difficulties in schools with half of cases of diagnosed mental illness beginning before the age of 14, and 75% before the age of 18.

The research found that many children have a high ACE score (meaning multiple adverse childhood experiences) known to leave children at risk of mental and physical ill-health later in life and even early death.

With children spending 190 days a year at school, TIS believe that schools are very well placed to pick up the baton and help these children.

The journey to becoming TIS accredited

The accreditation on Thursday 29 April was a key milestone in Penrice Academy’s provision of mental health and wellbeing that represents just the tip of the iceberg to years of hard work.

There were 33 distinct aspects of emotional health and wellbeing support that needed to be evidenced in order to reach the final assessment day.

Ms Hooper and Mrs Taylor were the first teachers at the school to be trained up to become Trauma and Mental Health practitioners back in 2018. This involved a 10 day training course taking place over a number of months.

Mrs Taylor explained:

“A lot of the course content focused on the learning process and the neuroscience behind learning behaviours. At the end of the course we had to put into practice everything we’d learnt, and then we studied a further two days in order to gain our diplomas.”

Since 2018, the school has continued to work tirelessly in this area, training up a further four members of staff in order to absolutely embed, develop and enhance the infrastructure that was already in place.

Mrs Taylor said:

“We’ve completed a lot of work on something we call Compassionate Classrooms. This is aimed at training all Penrice teachers on the neuroscience behind child behaviour. We’ve also brought in our student mental health and wellbeing policy and our relationships policy, so that’s the paperwork that supports and underpins everything.

We’ve launched support initiatives at both ends of the age spectrum. For our youngest students, we have put in place specialist practitioners that focus on Year 6 students ahead of starting in Year 7, working on their anxiety and self-esteem, building that confidence. For GCSE students, we’ve hosted anxiety and pre-exam nerves groups to help them cope with the pressure of assessments.”

The news of the award arrived in the same week that Penrice Academy launched its latest mental health and wellbeing initiative, having just trained their inaugural cohort of Us Plus student mentors; an 18-strong Year 9 team of young people able to support the emotional, mental health and wellbeing of their peers, particularly those in the younger year groups.

Scarlett, in Year 9, commented on the Us Plus scheme and said:

“It is nice for people to be able to have students in Year 9 that they are able to talk to. It offers a different channel to a teacher; it doesn’t have to be a big thing and they can talk to us if they’re feeling low or having an off day.”

Final words

In recognition of being the first mainstream secondary school, Julie Harmieson, Co-Director of TIS UK said:

“The journey to becoming a Trauma and Mental Health Informed school is just that – it’s not a destination that is ever arrived at – we look for embedded practice and a reflective environment that supports further development and this is evident in the ethos and culture at Penrice.

Promoting positive mental health and supporting vulnerable children and young people is at the heart of the work of the Academy, from the meet and greet policy to support connection with every student, to tutor time dedicated to wellbeing with the teachers who know them best. The school has adopted the term compassionate classrooms and significantly children report that staff prioritise them feeling safe and well.”

Penrice Academy will now hold the TIS accreditation for 3 years before they are assessed again.

Budding Engineers Submit Entry to the Big Bang Project

A team of seven Year 7 students have recently been hard at work on their designs for the Big Bang Project, a competition aimed at inspiring young people in the STEM subjects.

Taking place after school in the DT classrooms, the students have been challenged to design filtration devices to cleanse rainwater for people to drink and wash their hands in countries where clean water is in short supply.

The requirements for the design are Cheap, Effective, Waterproof, Hardwearing, Easy to Make, Easy to Maintain, Easy to Use, and Stability.

On Tuesday 27 April the students were tasked with the difficult decision of whittling down the concepts to their final design.

After much deliberation, the team opted to proceed with a merger of Jessica’s and Meredith’s ideas. The seven-strong team have now started working on their project presentation as the final entry to the Big Bang Competition.

Mr Watson, Design Technology teacher at Penrice Academy said:

“I think it’s really important for Year 7s to get involved with a project like this because it shows their burst of creativity and shows how they can apply themselves to a challenge outside of the day to day curriculum. I wanted students who were really keen and enthusiastic and Year 7 have that in abundance, particularly with the lack of time they’ve spent in the classroom this year.”

We wish the best of luck to Jessica, Emelia, Meredith, Chloe, Leo, Ben and Melissa with their entry ahead of the deadline on Monday 3 May.

Penrice Launches Us Plus Student Team

There was an exciting development in Penrice Academy’s Emotional Health and Wellbeing support infrastructure this week where 18 Year 9 students were trained to become the school’s first ever Us Plus student team.

The aim of the programme is to create a team of young people able to support the emotional, mental health and wellbeing of their peers, particularly those in the younger year groups.

Based in the Thrive Room and led by Mrs Taylor, the training involved the development of teamwork, listening and safeguarding skills.

L-R Poppy, Scarlett and Katie

Poppy explained:

“Today we’re training to become the school’s first ever Us Plus student team. We’re going to be here to help people who want to talk to someone, just to get their feelings out and make them feel a bit better.”

Katie added:

“We’ve been working on how to make aspects of the school more approachable and more accessible to all people, trying to make sure that everyone understands that students and teachers are all affected by mental health.”

The long term plans are for the 18-strong team to remain in place as Us Plus student mentors until the end of Year 11, when they will then aid in training up a new cohort of Year 9 mentors to continue the scheme.

Scarlett finished by explaining her reasons for volunteering for the scheme and said:

“I just thought it would be really nice for people to be able to have students in Year 9 that they are able to talk to. It offers a different channel to a teacher; it doesn’t have to be a big thing and they can talk to us if they’re feeling low or having an off day.”

Nadine Donates her Lockdown Locks

Do you ever remember returning to school after a long holiday to find that your classmate looked different? New trims, radiant sun tans and fresh new uniform are just a handful of examples where classmates take a second glance before recognising a friend’s new look.

Well that’s exactly what happened to Nadine in Year 9 this week who returned from the Easter break looking very different indeed – all in aid of a great cause.

Having flaunted long locks for many years, Nadine bravely asked the hairdresser to cut off 19 inches of hair in support of The Little Princess Trust.

The Little Princess Trust is a charity that provides real hair wigs, free of charge, to children and young people who have lost their own hair through cancer treatment.

The trust is actively promoting their #WeLoveLockdownLocks campaign, encouraging people of all ages to donate their excess lockdown hair.

Nadine explained:

Lots of my friends from primary school and Penrice have only ever seen me with long hair. It was a big shock to them when I returned to school after the holidays. Lots of people have said the new haircut looks nice.

Nadine was initially planning to support The Little Princess Trust back in Year 6, but admitted that she was too scared at the time. However, a close friend of the family recently suffering with Leukaemia gave Nadine the motivation to donate her locks to charity so that it can be used to make wigs.

If you would like to get involved and donate your hair to The Little Princess Trust then watch the video below.

COVID-19 Student Testing

COVID-19 Student Testing:

For information about Penrice Academy’s Student Testing timetable and process please click here.

Remote Learning & Parental Updates

Remote Learning & Parental Updates:

For information about Penrice Academy’s remote learning structure and copies of the most recent parental update letters please visit our Remote Learning page here.