Six cadets from the RAF Section of the CCF attended a flying course where they learned the principles of flight, control surfaces and the types of movement of an aircraft before learning the various aircraft instruments that feature in a Viking glider.
After receiving a thorough training session the cadets moved to the simulator which accurately models a real glider. Here they were able to practice manoeuvring in the air and landing in the safety of the simulator. Each cadet had a minimum of four flights, two in a Viking glider and two in a Cessna 172 four seater, powered aircraft.
Four of the cadets had previously done an air experience flight and were awarded their Blue Wings which they will wear on their uniform to symbolise their achievement. The Blue Wings are the first stage of learning to fly which will lead the to solo flights at the age of 16.
As we celebrate ten years of International Projects a variety of activities have been taking place within the Academy, including the Fair Wear Workshop, the latest transnational visit to Austria, an International Evening and international themed competitions within Tutor Groups. During the International Evening, Dr Faulkner re-visited the many international projects that have already taken place, updated students, parents and carers on the status of the ongoing projects and awarded students for their commitment to International Ambassadors’ Scheme.
Congratulations to gold awardees, Oliwia Kula, Vicky Wojcik, Rui Simoes, Luke Welch and Will Meddings, silver awardees, Maisie Pitt, Monica Grabowska and Noor Ul-Nissah Mahmood and bronze awardees, Imad Hussain and Molly Simpkins.
Since the Academy opened in 2007, TDA has worked on thirteen projects with partners from China, Taiwan, Albania, Russia and the Ukraine. Three of these projects are ongoing with partners from Europe and the latest transnational meeting took place last week in Austria. There are discussions for three new projects to commence over the next few years.
The Year 7 basketball team travelled to Ken Stimpson for the semi-final and final of the Peterborough Schools’ Cup.
In the semi-final match TDA faced Hampton and it was clear that the opposition were in it to win taking the lead by 8-0 at half time. TDA weren't going to give up without a fight and evened the score up to finish 10-6 by full-time.
In the next round TDA played QKA and this time they were focussed and determined. The boys scored several baskets in quick succession, demonstrating great skill on the ball, both in their movement and passing. The score at full-time was 0-8, with TDA taking the win.
Next up it was Hampton vs QKA in a game that would decide who would finish in 2nd place between TDA and QKA. The QKA team showed true grit against a strong team but they couldn't compete with the pace and on-point shooting of the Hampton boys.
The tournament finished with Hampton in 1st place, TDA in 2nd place and QKA in 3rd place.
Students Celebrate Further Exam Success at Thomas Deacon Academy
The proportion of students gaining a good pass in both English and Mathematics has improved again this year, rising to 53%. The overall GCSE pass rate has also risen by 3% and the number of top grades achieved has seen a significant increase. For example, the proportion of students gaining the very top grades has tripled in English to an all-time high of 23%. Other subjects performing particularly strongly, securing over 30% A*-A grades, are History, German, Computer Science and Spanish.
For the first time in the Academy’s history, every single student this year has achieved a qualification in English, which is a testament to the hard work of the staff and students across the Academy in developing good literacy. Geoff Walls, Principal, said: “It has been a pleasure to see students and staff celebrating this year’s results. It has been a huge team effort to bring about further improvements across the board at Thomas Deacon Academy this year. The progress we are making as an Academy is fantastic and our staff and students deserve the very highest praise for their achievements.” Emma Taplin, Vice Principal , said: “We are so proud of the achievements of all our students. They have worked very hard this year and this has paid off. The rigour of the new English and Mathematics examinations has been incredibly demanding for both students and staff but we have risen to the challenge and achieved a fantastic set of results.”
Impressive individual performances include:
Leon Kist Chancellor - 2 x 9 grades, 7 x A*
Lara Wade - 3 x 9 grades and 6 x A*
Poppy Richardson - 2 x 9 grades and 6 x A*
Maya Patel - 2 x 9 grades, 5 x A*
Jawad Abbas – 1 x 9 grade, 5 x A* and 2 x A
Tayo Ali - 1 x 9 grade and 5 x A*
Neelam Patel – 1 x 9 grade and 6 x A*
Zulaikha Al-P'neeli - 5 x A* and 2 x A
‘Further significant improvement’ celebrated at Thomas Deacon Academy
42% of students achieved grades A* to B and the overall pass rate improved, rising to 98.7%.
Subjects performing particularly strongly, with more than a quarter of all students gaining the highest grades of A* and A, include Mathematics, Art and Product Design. Equally pleasing was the continued strength of vocational qualifications, with an impressive average grade of Distinction+ across all subjects. Principal Geoff Walls said: “These results represent further significant improvement in the academic achievement of students in our Sixth Form and is a real testimony to the hard work put in by both students and teachers. “It shows the depth of academic rigour at TDA when 52% of students studying Chemistry gained an A*-B grade and 60% of Further Mathematics students also gained an A*-B grade. This represents real academic achievement and is reflective of the ethos and culture in the Sixth Form at TDA.”
Ben Treverton, Head of Sixth Form, said: “The hard work of students has paid dividends with a record number of students getting their first choice place at university. “Students reported that they felt very well prepared for this year’s examinations and this has been reflected in the results at TDA. We are seeking to improve our results year on year and, therefore, students and staff have been very happy with this year’s outcomes.”
Impressive individual performances include:
Misha Folker - A*, A, A in Psychology, Biology and Chemistry
Maddie Wallace - A*, A, A in Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics
Thomas Hamlyn - A*, A, A in Physics, Mathematics and Chemistry
Suraj Patel - A, A, A in Biology, Economics and Mathematics
Ellie Twiggs - A, A, A in Politics, History and Psychology
TDA6 Business Studies students have been working on setting up their own business for their coursework. This week we saw the Asian Fashion Show which not only demonstrated the business skills of the students involved but also raised money for charity.
The show saw friends and family come together to enjoy a beautiful range of sari’s and dresses on the catwalk of the drama theatre. This was a really fun way for the students to experience the complexities of running a business and they certainly did a fantastic job raising £200 for Addenbrookes Hospital.
Y9 spent the weekend completing their bronze award qualifying expedition. The weekend didn’t get off the to the greatest start in terms of weather, with the students hiking 10km in rain, then sunshine, then more rain followed by more sunshine. A combination of the rainfall and the subsequent wet environment resulted in majority of the students returning to camp very wet, but still in high spirits. After setting up camp and cooking an evening meal, the students settled down in the hope of getting a good night’s sleep for a second day of hiking.
Day two saw a complete turnaround in the weather with clear blue skies, although rain overnight still meant tents and kit were damp. One by one, the groups set off on their way and despite a few wrong turns here and there all eight groups reached the finish point by mid-afternoon. The look of delight/relief on the faces of some of our students was priceless. Well done everyone.
The Children’s University opened its doors to 40 children from the Junior Academy and Main Academy this weekend.
Y5 and above learned about the Arabic language. They were introduced to the alphabet and the sounds of the letter. They then used playdoh to make the letters of their name in Arabic and practised speaking and listening. The session ended listening to “ Let it go” from Frozen sung in Arabic.
Children from Y3 and Y4 learned the Russian alphabet, they wrote their names in Russian and made name badges. They learned to write and speak the numbers one-ten and played memory games to test which numbers they knew.
Look out for the next CU session where there will be an outdoor activity and members taking part in the Young Pioneers camp at TDA will gain 10 extra learning hours to log in their passports followed by a Summer Tea Party in July to celebrate another successful year of Children’s University at Thomas Deacon Academy.
Parents can drop in and find out more at our Children’s University open afternoon on Friday this week at 3pm in the main academy. Passports cost £6 per child and membership is for Y3-Y9. For more details email: firstname.lastname@example.org
A small group of Y9 students have been taking part in a programme called Sound Training, in which complex words in the English language are explored and broken down through a variety of fun games and activities. The purpose of the programme is to train students to decode complex words quickly and effortlessly improving their reading skills. The results of the programme are very positive, with reading ages improving by several years in many cases.
Over the bank holiday weekend, 42 Y8 students attended the PGL STEM trip where they took part in a variety of team building activities, many of which are designed to stretch the students, pushing them out of their comfort zone.
It certainly looks like the students had an amazing time, taking part in raft building, climbing the high ropes, abseiling, archery and much more.
It is fantastic to hear of their adventures and even more satisfying when the students give such positive feedback on their experiences;
'I feel like I can do anything now!’ Alice Hodson (abseiling)
Y5 took part in their first Peterborough schools hockey tournament (Y5/6) this week. TDAJ entered two teams and both teams came 5th out of 6 in their pools, which is a fantastic achievement considering the teams they were up against were all in Y6!
The students played with determination and kept their heads up in the face of defeat. The experience has been great preparation for next year, which they are already looking forward to.
The annual Battle of The Bands concert took place at TDA last week. With over 300 tickets sold in advance and more sales on the night, the Atrium balconies filled with students while the atmosphere filled with anticipation. Each band performed according to the running order defined by the band draw and after a night of fantastic live performances from the House bands and the staff band, the winners were announced.............................well done Castle, you are BoTB champions 2017. More photographs can be seen in the Gallery.