Head Teachers Christmas Message

This term, one of our main focuses has been around keeping children safe and in particular on-line safety; you would have received a letter from me earlier in the term in regards to this.  With your child’s academic report in November, you should have received a booklet produced by Cavendish to support your knowledge of on-line social media and games “Knowledge is Power”; I hope you found this a useful tool.   

As a school we are concerned as to the escalation of knife crime within London. Young people are considering it the norm to talk about stabbings and at times sensationalise knife crime.  This behaviour is encouraged by the music that many of them listen to.  With this in mind we ask that you pay particular attention to the music some of our young people are listening to outside of school – Is it offensive? Does it instigate violence and racism? Is it age appropriate?  We need to take an active stance in keeping our young people safe. The school will be implementing a number of knife crime workshops in the spring term, if you want to know more or become involved please contact us in the New Year.  With the threat of violence on the streets I understand why many parents keep their children in doors. However, many of the students are on online playing games that are not appropriate. Concerns as regards who they are speaking to and the aggressive nature of these calls are again a major concern.

Computer games are designed to be as addictive as gambling; it causes a definite change in a child’s behaviour – they become aggressive and short tempered, they find it hard to turn the game off and are unable to mentally switch off.  This impacts on their sleep patterns and they may experience significant mood swings. I would urge parents and carers to take great care and encourage and support their children to adopt sensible on line habits.

I know it can be a challenge getting our young people to wear coats in the winter.  However, it is really important for their wellbeing that they come appropriately dressed for the weather, they are predicting a very cold winter – if you need our assistance please contact us.

This term a number of new initiatives have been started at Cavendish School; we are currently working with Rugby Works, which is a charity that work with and mentors young people and helps them to achieve with a view to supporting them post 16.

Some of our students have been very creative, forming a working party with Talk Nightingale to design and test a new app that helps young people to track and communicate their wellbeing with school.  Two students from the group will have the opportunity to see the concept through to the end design and marketing in their Shoreditch offices.

Last week students and staff visited the theatre; Cardboard Citizens have been working with associate company Lyrix Organix to create a campaign with our Citz Storytellers called No Box No Label, supported by Comic Relief. It aims to tackle the labels, stigmas and stereotypes around young people and invites you to step outside your box and take action!

This week some our students had an interactive workshop with @mimu_gloves at @peckhamlevels organised by @makeshift. Our students learnt how to use Mi.Mu gloves, a new wearable technology for the composition of music developed by singer songwriter Imogen Heap.

We have more workshops planned to support our young students wellbeing in the new term… we look forward to keeping you posted.  Please make sure you visit our website www.cavendish-school.org and follow us on twitter @CavendishSE16.

During 2018 we have had the pleasure of hosting two Year Here Fellows, Tessa and Angie; Year Here is a Postgraduate course in social innovation based in London.  The course is a platform for entrepreneurial young professionals to build smart solutions to entrenched social problems. It’s immersive, action-oriented and grounded in experience. You’ll learn from, and design with, people at the frontline of inequality – in care homes, hostels and youth services across London.  Tessa and Angie have been based in reception and have supported a number of students in and out of class and introduced lots new initiatives to the school.

The Spring Term will be a very busy time for Cavendish; it’s the start of the exam period and we will continue to have a number of visitors coming to support extracurricular activities, especially around wellbeing.  During the exam period we may have later starts and earlier closing times to afford our GCSE’s students the best opportunity to succeed.  We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause parents and carers, we will write to let you know dates and times.


I would like to take this opportunity to say a BIG thank you to our parents and carers for all the support and help this term; I hope those parents that attended Academic Review Day found it beneficial.  It is really important that we work together to support our young people; the team and I are truly grateful for the partnership we have built up with our parents and carers.


I would like to say a big thank you to all the staff at the school who work hard so that your child can achieve and reach their potential. Their good humour and energy is an inspiration.


I would also like to take this opportunity to advise that PC Micky Houlahan our School Police Liaison Officer, who has been with Cavendish for a number of years and played an important role at Cavendish, will be moving on to pastures new in January.  We are hoping staff and student will be introduced to our SPLO at the end of January.  We will miss Micky’s kindness, good humour and good advice, and wish him well in his new position.

I hope that this Christmas is filled with magic, love, peace and goodwill and that all your dreams and wishes come true.


From all of us here at Cavendish we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy and prosperous New Year.


The team and I look forward to working with you in 2019.


Yours sincerely,