The last half term has gone swiftly and our new students have settled in really well and all are working successfully across the college, engaging with their learning and making good progress.
Students in the sixth form have been developing their café and cooking skills, Year 11 have been enjoying their placements at FE colleges and Year 10s getting to grips with their options. Alongside this students in Koa and Animus have been working really well with their communication and independence and I have seen great work from all in the college.
It is definitely starting to turn more autumnal so can I please ask that students come in with a coat and that this is clearly labelled with their name. It always amazes me how much lost property we hold with no names in it.
We are proud to have been chosen as one of the four places in West Sussex to have a tree donated to us to be planted in memory of The Late Queen. We had been pleased to be part of the Queen’s Green Canopy project working with Worthing Golf Club to plant trees in celebration of the Platinum Jubilee and we will host a formal tree planting ceremony early next half term.
Over this term we have had a couple of teachers who have been off work having operations and we wish a speedy recovery to Mia and June. An ongoing challenge for all schools, at present, has been getting supply staff. There are none available. This does mean that we have to juggle staffing each day for students and classes when we have colleagues absent. Our corresponding issue relates to recruitment and this continues to be a real challenge for support staff roles, ultimately this is linked to the issues we are all experiencing in relation to inflation causing costs to spiral and pay not keeping up with this. Your support when we need to be flexible with staffing and adjust the days slightly is really appreciated.
You will see lots of information in the press over the coming weeks about public sector pay and the professional association’s views on this. As a college we set our budget in March for the April – March financial year. Since setting this year’s budget I have had an extra £140000 in unfunded pay awards I need to find. We have also doubled the allocated budget for electricity and gas (and I am not sure that is enough). You will recognize all of these pressures from your own household and it ultimately will mean that we as a college will not be able to do all the things we would want to do. This is frustrating for us and I know it will be for you. We are all committed to ensuring that we provide students with a safe, positive and very high quality education.
Students are understandably tired after a busy half term and I hope you all get to have a good rest in the coming week.
With best wishes to you all for a lovely half term.