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Friday 7th May 2021

Dear Parents and Carers

I am very pleased with the way students are approaching their revision and preparation for assessments this week, I hope all students give their best. With this in mind, it’s really important that students continue to attend all lessons so they do not miss vital information in the run-up to assessments. If a student is unwell and unable to attend an assessment, please make sure the college is aware by reporting the absence here

For our Access To Level 3 and Year 13 students, our Head of Teaching and Learning, Vicki Haigh, has put together a video explaining how we will assess grades. Watch it here

Our Access to Level 3 Co-ordinator will be writing to students to talk through progression plans and your final date with us at College.

Year 13 students should continue to attend lessons up until 14th May. Our Creative Arts students will take part in an online project the week of 7th May. All Year 13 students will be remote learning from 17th- 28th May.

We are impressed with how students are responding to our covid safety measures this term, so thank you all for your cooperation with this. Whilst we can see the rate of covid cases decreasing in the UK, our thoughts as a college will be with those in other parts of the world, for example, India, where the covid crisis is at an all-time high. I know that some of our students will have family members in India and may be worried at this time. Our chapel is always open for students and staff who would like to use this space for reflection.

The Department Of Education's has produced an update that outlines why it is important to continue lateral flow testing at schools and colleges that I thought might be useful for students and parents/carers. To read the article, click here

A gentle reminder to students that we continue to strongly recommend that face coverings are worn in classrooms and they must be worn in communal spaces. It is important to keep supporting and reminding each other of these measures to avoid future outbreaks locally and nationally.

Wishing you all a lovely bank holiday weekend.

Marian Curran (College Principal)

Teaching Learning and Assessment

Special Considerations Update - confirmation from JCQ about the arrangements for Special Consideration and the associated timeline.

Careers News

Welcome to Careers News!

Featuring the latest apprenticeships, university and college opportunities, career-related events and much more. Highlights of the 28th of April edition include:

  • Six top tips for getting virtual work experience
  • One-week corporate virtual work experience with Slaughter and May
  • Degree apprenticeship opportunities in Nursing, Surveying, and Marketing
  • Art History Summer Programme at the Courtauld Institute of Art
  • Pathways to Property Summer School
  • Creative workshop for young people identifying as LGBT+
This Week's Careers News
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St Vincent Relief Support Appeal

Many of you may know that there have been several volcanic eruptions on the island since 9th April. Lava has destroyed everything in its track, sulphur has contaminated water supplies, blankets of ash resting on buildings has destroyed infrastructure, and boulders shooting out the volcano has meant people are living in fear. The island is simply too dangerous to live on. The ash that is in the air from the volcanic is also dangerous to breathe in. The beautiful green island is now grey.

Items can be donated through our RPE team, drop off points are being arranged or items can be taken to the RPE classrooms.

To see what is needed click here

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Wheelchair Rugby with Bristol Bears!

Fancy A Go?!

We have a great opportunity over the next few weeks for any students who fancy trying out Wheelchair Rugby – right here in our Sports Hall at College.

Bristol Bears Wheelchair Rugby Club is coming to St Brendan’s for the next four Wednesdays from 2:30 – 3:30 pm to run taster sessions. The club has been established in Bristol for many years and offers social sport for disabled and non-disabled people as well as running competitive teams for classified players.

The sessions are open to all students, male or female – and you don’t have to have ever been in a wheelchair before – you will be shown how to use one by Head Coach Ian. The students who took part in the first session this week loved it!

If you would like to have a taster session in this action-packed sport, that was originally known as ‘murderball’ according to Great Britain Wheelchair Rugby(!) - email Sports teacher, Paul Ryan and he will book you in.


There are places for nine students in each session – which will be given out on a first-come-first-served basis.

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Café Max and Café Min - Important Information!

Good news - both cafes are now open!

Opening hours are 8:30 am - 3:30 pm Monday- Friday.

Whether it's breakfast to kickstart your day, a snack at break time or a tasty lunch, the Cafe Teams will be happy to serve you.


BAME at St Brendan’s

Commonwealth War Graves

Many soldiers from all over the world, of many different ethnicities, fought and died for Britain and the British Empire in the First World War. When the Commonwealth War Graves Commission was set up it was based on the principle that everyone’s sacrifice was equal and should be marked equally.

However, this principle was more honoured in the breach than the observance. A special committee convened by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission has found that at least 116,000 black and asian casualties, and perhaps as many as 350,000, were not commemorated by name and some were not commemorated at all.

The Times newspaper has reported the scandal, to find out more click here

Bank Holiday Activities

With an upcoming Bank Holiday, there is an opportunity for a bit of relaxation and fun. It's especially important for those with key assessments to take a moment to decompress and clear your head. Below are some events that might offer a few hours of break, some to leave the house and some virtual covid-safe ideas too!

Click here to find out more!
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SU Elections

The SU elections take place in May, so if you would like to put yourself forward for any of the 8 roles available you need to get in touch as soon as possible!

If you are diligent, responsible, a contributor and care about your peers and their experience this is the role for you. It is also a fantastic development opportunity and CV-Booster.

You must be at St Brendan's next year to run, so this is only open to 3Y1 and ATL3 students.

For more information or to put yourself forward as a candidate, email Stanford or Laura as soon as you can!


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Get Involved!

The Hay Festival

As in 2020, the HAY Festival will again be a digital event providing a fantastic opportunity for students to enjoy a wide range of lectures and discussions free online. The 34th Spring edition brings writers and readers together for an inspiring array of conversations, debates, workshops and performances online, Wednesday 26 May to Sunday 6 June. Over 12 days, more than 250 acclaimed writers, global policymakers, historians, poets, pioneers and innovators will take part in this year’s Festival, launching the best new fiction and non-fiction.

It will interrogate some of the biggest issues of our time, from building a better world post-pandemic to tackling the compound crises of climate change, inequality, and challenges to truth and democracy.

Festival-goers can explore the programme and register for free now at www.hayfestival.com/wales

Over 12 days, more than 250 acclaimed writers, global policymakers, historians, poets, pioneers and innovators will take part in this year’s Festival, launching the best new fiction and non-fiction.

It will interrogate some of the biggest issues of our time, from building a better world post-pandemic to tackling the compound crises of climate change, inequality, and challenges to truth and democracy.

We would recommend all students register for this event and choose which sessions they wish to attend hayfestival.org/wales

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Get Involved!

Medical Schools Council Summer Schools

Medical Schools Council is working with four leading medical schools across England to offer a series of free summer schools. The initiative is funded by Health Education England and is aimed at young people from areas of England where few students apply to study medicine. There is a particular focus on reaching young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

At an MSC Summer School, students can learn about becoming a doctor or health care professional and whether it would be the right career for them. They will receive the information, skills and above all the confidence they need to submit a strong application to medicine. The summer school will take place during the week of 5 July 2021. Applications for this summer are now open and can be made here

Improving Wellbeing – A self-study course for students

Dr Iro Konstantinou at The Tony Little Centre for Innovation and Research in Learning (CIRL) has created 8 x 10-minute well-being sessions for school students to do in their own time and at their own pace. The link to the sessions is here

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You can find our College Chaplain Ann Morgan in room B209, all faiths & no faiths welcome!

If you would like to follow any of the Chaplaincy social media accounts - the links are below.

Chaplaincy Twitter

Chaplaincy Instagram

Chaplaincy Facebook

Chaplaincy Youtube

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Key Contacts

Marian Curran Principal

Svetlana Bajic-Raymond Vice Principal

Vicki Haigh Head of Teaching, Learning & Assessment

Kerry Mullinder Head of Learning Development & Safeguarding

Sue Rees Head of Data and Exams

Laura Howe-Haysom Head of Support Services

Sarah Hinder Finance Manager

Alison Rayner Exams Officer

Claire Woodhouse Attendance Officer

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