Giving our Year 6 students a taste of Secondary Education
Thrilling science experiments, sports challenges, music, poetry and laughter were enjoyed by 138 students at the first-ever Impact Education Multi Academy Trust Year 6 Conference, held at Castle Hall Academy in Mirfield.
The conference brought together Year 6 students from primary schools across the Trust, with the aims of supporting the transition to secondary school, promoting self-esteem and well-being, raising aspirations and providing a sense of belonging to the family of schools within Impact Education.
The day began with a welcome from Mick Kay, CEO at Impact Education who spoke about the importance of working hard, aiming high and treating others with kindness, reminding the students that they are role models for other young people.
Following Mick Kay’s speech, Paul Brook, Headteacher at Castle Hall Academy addressed the children, describing his experience of transitioning from primary to secondary school, including the emotional highs and lows, the importance of seeking support when needed and the need to grasp new opportunities that present themselves along the way.
A programme of exciting taster sessions enabled the students to experience a range of activities including mountain biking, fire building, coding, art, drama, sport and music. The interactive sessions gave the students a taste of the secondary school environment and helped new friendships to flourish.
Old Bank Academy student Lyla Buckley said “It’s been important because we got to meet other people from other schools, because obviously when you go to high school,
you mix with other schools as well. You’re not always with your friends. People have got along with each other and it was really fun.”
Raising students’ literacy levels, with a focus on developing confident communication skills and encouraging a passion for reading, is a key priority for Impact Education academies. A highlight of the Year 6 conference supporting this aim was a fantastic session led by author and poet Paul Cookson. Paul’s performance of his own poetry was a lively celebration of language that had the children falling about with laughter, inspiring creativity and sparking their imaginations. The poem Let No One Steal Your Dreams perfectly captured the spirit of the day.
The children enjoyed snacks, a delicious buffet lunch and freshly baked muffins to take home, provided by the talented Impact Education Catering Team.
At the end of a successful day, Mick Kay spoke with pride of the engagement and enthusiasm of the students and thanked trust staff for their work on the event.
“It has been fantastic to see so many young people connecting from across the trust, making friends, sharing new experiences and breaking down insecurities. There has been real energy and a fantastic sense of togetherness for students and staff alike. I’m not aware of such a conference for Year 6 students taking place within any other multi academy trust; this has been a unique event for the leaders of tomorrow and a perfect embodiment of our values of Heart, Mind and Connect” he said.