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Opening Letter from Dr. Penny Barratt OBE, CEO

What a strange year this has been.  We are really proud that we have done our best to keep our schools open.  We are also really pleased with the way our pupils have adapted to learning at home when they have needed to.  Thank you for the role you have played in this.  We have all pulled together to minimise the disruption to the children’s education.
It has been really strange for us to not have whole school events which we could celebrate with visitors.  We managed a few celebrations online but I am looking forward to seeing everyone together in person again.  
I’m glad we’ve still managed to put our newsletter together and you will see, despite the pandemic, that some exciting things have been happening across our schools.
We don’t know what the next school year will bring.  However, I think our schools have shown their resilience and creativity this year, and whatever the new year brings I’m sure they will manage well.  Hopefully it will be a full return to ‘normality’ but if not we will make sure the children keep having fun and learning.
I hope you enjoy the summer holidays and look forward to seeing you in September.


by Dr. Penny Barratt OBE
Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Penny Barratt OBE, Honoured in Queen’s Birthday Honours
by The Bridge Trust

Dr. Penny Barratt, Chief Executive Officer of The Bridge London Trust has been honoured in the Queen’s Birthday Honours with an OBE for services to education.

Penny has over 30 years of experience in the field of special education, both in the USA and in England, and has held a wide variety of roles working with children and young people of all ages, in both mainstream and specialist settings.

Penny has written a few words below:

“I am absolutely delighted to be included in the Queen’s Birthday Honours – and for me, this is recognition of what the whole team at The Bridge London Trust has achieved. We are an ambitious family of schools that embraces the individuality of everyone – children and adults.

“We are committed to getting learning right, and we’re always looking for new and better ways of doing things. Everything is about doing the best for our children and young people. I am very proud of what we have achieved to date but we don’t stand still we are continually looking at how we can further develop and achieve.”

Read the full article about the honours here

Michael's Suffolk Saunter for our Charity
by The Bridge Charity

Michael Streat from Woodbridge School, a super cyclist and fundraiser for The Bridge Charity, is raising funds for his latest effort in support of our children and young people. 

Michael will be cycling 84 Miles across Suffolk to raise money for our Charity. You can read his own words below and visit his campaign via this link to find out more.
My name is Michael Streat and I seek your support more keenly than ever, and for the 24th year running!  My friends and I are raising money for the Bridge School in Islington, a place I and my school, Woodbridge School, have very close links with forged through shared work and friendship.

Why does the school need money?

With resources immensely stretched by the cost of necessarily high staff-to-pupil ratios and the need to provide a vast range of highly specialist bespoke equipment (often only appropriate to one child, and then only for a short time while they grow), the children and  buildings remain woefully under-resourced in terms of many of the things other schools would take for granted as part of normal budgeting.

What will the money you donate be used for?

Your contribution will help in a small way to the bottomless financial needs of the Bridge children.  Money raised helps fund expensive sensory equipment, playground facilities, theatrical lighting and much more – all things that make an enormous difference to the way the children can enjoy their time at School; all things that would not have been bought without charitable support.

Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving - they'll never share them with anyone or send you unwanted emails. Once you donate, they'll send your money directly to the charity. They'll make sure Gift Aid (an additional 25%) is reclaimed on every eligible donation by a UK taxpayer, too. That means more money goes to the charity, faster, with JustGiving.

So please dig deep and donate now.

Michael Streat
Woodbridge School

Back to full days next year

by Dr. Penny Barratt OBE, CEO

As you will be aware most pupils have gone home early on a Friday afternoon in all of our schools this year, in response to the Covid situation. 
Doing this allowed us to prepare high quality online learning materials. Teachers have needed to offer a face to face teaching experience as well as online activities and materials.  Sometimes the switch to online due to lockdown or partial closure in response to a positive case have needed to be rapid.  The Friday afternoons have allowed teachers to have materials ready and for there to be a seamless switch between school and online teaching. This made sure we kept the focus on learning and  avoided losing time.
We were also able to limit the number of different adults who children came into contact with which was both Covid safe and provided additional security for many of the pupils.  During a regular school week, staff would have time out of class to plan lessons and assess pupils. This is often covered by a different teacher.  Where possible we have limited this cover this year and the Friday afternoons have supported us in doing this.  It has been a rough year for all and particularly our pupils.  Having consistent people in the classrooms supports children and provides them with a sense of security.
Fridays also provided an opportunity for deep cleaning the school buildings to provide the safest possible environment.
We feel the early home-time for pupils has really benefitted all of the school community, but also appreciate that it may have been a challenge for some of you. 

As quarantine rules change on August 16th it is unlikely that we will have a lot of school closure going forward. We have therefore decided to return to a full day on a Friday.  However, if things change again, then we may need to rethink this. We will keep you informed.

by Dr. Penny Barratt OBE, CEO

As you may already know we are opening a new school in Norwich.  This school is a special school which will eventually cater for 170 pupils.  It is planned to open in January 2023 with 60 pupils.  Here are some images of what it will look like.

Back To School Dates
by The Bridge Trust

Children return to school on these dates


Monday 6 September 2021

Thursday 2 September 2021                                        

Monday 6 September                                                   

Thursday 2 September 2021

Monday 6 September  

The Gruffalo Screening
by Mica McQueen, Senior Teacher

As part of the Islington 11 by 11, The Bridge Primary enjoyed watching a special live streamed performance of ‘The Gruffalo’ based on the classic book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. 

At a time when theatre visits were not possible. The Bridge Primary transformed the hall into our very own theatre where some of our students took on the roles of Ushers and box office staff. A big thank you to Tall Stories Live who offered all schools in Islington this fantastic opportunity which our children thoroughly enjoyed.  

Sports Day for Primary
by Zoe Elliot, Teacher

This term at the Primary Site the children took part in an Olympics Week. Each class took part in a daily challenge and learnt more about the Olympic Games. Olympics Week finished with our school sports day, where there children took part in races, target throwing, hurdles and a tricky obstacle course. Well done to all the children for trying their best in all our sports activities!

Open Orchestra
by Mica McQueen, Senior Teacher

Despite restrictions, our music Tutor Fred and Orchestra Lead Sarah have been working hard to create The Bridge Primary’s first ever Open Orchestra. 

At the end of the summer term, Pupils received the opportunity to show off all their hard work during a live streamed zoom for parents and KS2 pupils. We are very pleased to announce that Music Education Islington has secured funding to continue the project at our school next year. We are proud of our student's progress and look forward to watching and continuing being a part of their musical journeys 

Tall Stories
by Mica McQueen, Senior Teacher

The Bridge Primary had an amazing week participating in the 11 by 11 Festival: Celebrating our creative community.  We have been working in partnership with Tall Stories theatre company who have a new stage production of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s picture book 'The Smeds and the Smoos' A charming tale about star-crossed aliens who fall in love with an entertainingly conveyed message about difference and tolerance. 

We planned lots of exciting activities around the story including a sensory story, themed attention autism, Sensory art sessions and at the end of the week we celebrated difference by having a purple parade.  

We are super excited that we have been invited to view a relaxed performance of the show in Autumn!  

Forest School 
by Jessica Hegarty, Senior Teacher

During the past year and a half, many of us have come to appreciate the outdoors more so than ever! Lockdown has forced us to go outside into nature and enjoy the benefits that nature can bring. We have recognised this at The Bridge Primary too and have been working to develop an outdoor learning curriculum that allows the children explore the outdoors and learn in a range of ways within nature. We are very fortunate to have some woodland area close to the school and Jubilee Class have been making the most of it during the summer term! We walk to the woodland together, taking the opportunity to apply and practice road safety and other community awareness skills we have learned throughout the year.

Once we reach the woodland, we search for our favourite spot. It has two trees at the top of a hill which is perfect for setting up our ‘base camp.’  We work together to build our tent; this is the spot we come back to after we are finished exploring the woods. We have done lots of different activities at base camp so far, including printing with paint and flowers and making magical tree heads! We learn lots of different skills at forest school including listening and attention skills, counting, fine motor skills and reading. Being outside also provides lots of sensory feedback through all of our senses. We even go out in the rain too, this can provide lots of new sensory experiences! Thanks to funding secured by Garden Grants we were able to buy waterproof overalls for everybody to wear. Next year we plan to extend our outdoor learning to all classes at Primary so that more children are able to access the outdoors in an exciting, safe and meaningful way.

Sports Day 
by Julian Matthews, Headteacher

This year we held an Olympics Day to replace our usual Sports Day which had to be cancelled due to difficulties associated with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. However, we didn’t let that small matter stop us from having a fantastic, fun-filled day!! With some excellent planning from Nikolaos our PE teacher and tremendous support from all the school staff we set up sports, games and activities all over the school and ensured that there was something for everyone to get involved in. The day started off with a very competitive football match in the hall between Gold Class and Purple Class. A couple of beautiful goals were scored by Purple Class – after some rather dubious defending by Gold Class – but then, after a lovely passing move through the midfield Gold Class managed to score one of their own and make a game of it.

Next came the basketball match in the atrium with students from Yellow, Bronze, Green, Gold and Silver all taking part. Amazing to see how many students were able to score close-up and long range shots, dribble and pass the ball to their peers with great accuracy.

On the third floor students were able to run around the atrium on our indoor hurdling track. This was one of the most popular activities during the day and both students and staff loved having a go jumping over all the hurdles.

All round a fantastic success and we look forward to our next Olympics Day!

Secret Garden at Secondary
by Anna Hewitt, Assistant Head

We have renamed the green space outside the school ‘The Secret Garden’ and use it regularly for student well-being, relaxation and games. This term Bronze Class have also used it for gardening and have planted seeds of aromatic plants and cherry tomatoes. We are looking forward to watching them all grow.

The School Band
by Steve Mills, Teacher

This term, sixth form students have been working hard, practising songs for the school band, 'Bottle Flip'. They have managed to get a set of ten popular songs together which they will hopefully perform at the school sixth form prom along side staff members.

They have already had success earlier in the year, performing in a small concert to a limited number and have expanded their repertoire since then. 

Outdoor Education at our Forest School 
by Julian Matthews, Headteacher

Returning to the woods in Spring, having been in lockdown for so long, was a significant moment for our Forest School group this year.  The therapeutic benefits of nature were evident as the students explored the woodland and revisited their favourite places, noticing all the changes and spotting the signs of the new season. 

The group has worked exceptionally well together to take risks, play team games, build shelters and dens and develop their knowledge of and connection with nature.
All the students have become so much more confident, sharing their ideas and nature finds, and being willing to take the lead in activities.

Two of our 6th formers have accompanied the group as ‘Forest School Leaders’ and have done a fantastic job of supporting and encouraging their younger peers.

The Bridge Times
by Julian Matthews, Headteacher

This year Gold Class have been producing a weekly newspaper – The Bridge Times – with the help of Joanna and her team. Every student in the class has responsibility for an article and each week we get updates about sport, computer games, food, animation, TV and film, technology, jokes and countries.

This is an excellent way for students to understand what is happening in the world around them and also focus on their interests. This year we have been giving it away for free but next I think we should start charging for it as it is so good!

New Sensory Room at ILS
by Ed Ashcroft, Headteacher

We have a lovely new sensory room being installed in the summer for the ILS. It has taken some time in coming but we are thrilled that this will be open to students from Sept 2021.

The room is being installed by Southpaw over August and is part of a wider project across Bridge Trust Schools funded through a charity bid.  

Our next plan for the ILS is to put some climbing structures out in the garden area and transform our small gardens into learning spaces run by our students.

Living Space Update
by Ed Ashcroft, Headteacher

The INLS is thriving. We are now in our 3rd year of offering after school and holiday club provision. This summer we have 14 young people coming over the 3 weeks of August.  

Matt Hart our Head of Care is working closely with the local authority and parents to develop the provision further. Our hope is that within the next year we will be able to offer some ILS students overnights during the week.

Hungerford turns 125!
by The Bridge Trust

Hungerford School turns 125 years old this year, and we have been celebrating throughout the school. The Deputy Mayor of Islington and Cllr Jackson visited the school to mark the occasion. Stay turned to our social media channels for more pictures and celebration! 

Football Tournaments
by Jody Tranter, Assistant Head

Over the last few weeks, years 5 and 6 have played in
Islington Council football tournaments. They have represented our school values exceptionally and given their all. We’re really proud of them!

Science Fair
by Jody Tranter, Assistant Head

On the last Friday of term, the whole school took part in our first science fair since being part of The Bridge London. 

The children talked about their PBL project learning over the term with the large assembly of parents asking lots of questions to develop their oracy.

Virtual Tour

by Danielle Kirkpatrick, Teacher

The Bridge Satellite Provision at Highgate Hill have been leading the production of a new virtual tour video of their site. Keep an eye out for the video which will be posted on our social media channels and our website!

This term for English, the topic was Travel Writing. Both Aura and Navstar classes (based at the secondary satellite) created virtual tours of both the School and Elthorne park. They really enjoyed the experience, and it gave them a good insight into travel writing and blogging. 

The Satellite Sewing Bees 

by Gillian Goodfellow, Senior Teacher

This term students in Astra class have been learning about textiles through the topic Puppets. First, the students made a finger puppet, which included creating a design, cutting the fabric, joining the two pieces together with glue and adding details such as eyes.

Next, we had a go at sewing. Students learned about running stitch and over stitch. This took a lot of practice and patience but the students didn’t give up! One student even created a lovely bag.

Finally, we used all the techniques we had learnt in the previous weeks to make hand puppets. Students planned their designs on paper before gathering the materials they needed. Then it was time to get creative. Some students used glue to join their fabric together, while others sewed.

I think you’ll agree that the students worked incredibly hard during this topic as the results show. Maybe we have some future designers here at Satellite!

Every Mind Matters

If you want to find resources from the NHS for mental health and well-being,
please do visit the Every Mind Matters website below.
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