This has been a very busy term for AAT, as we continue business but also make the transition to Ambition Education Trust (AET). We have achieved so much together since 2018, and I would like to thank you all for working tirelessly for the benefit of the children, their families and the staff across the Trust.

Verulam in particular have had a busy term, with Fergal Moane taking over the reins and then guiding the school through its Ofsted inspection a few weeks later. Having worked in two outstanding schools, Fergal is well aware of how to develop Verulam so that it too can reach this benchmark in the future.

So, we say a very fond farewell to the Alban Academies Trust. Thank you to the Headteachers, Governors, Trustees and core team members who have built a fantastic organisation. We should be very proud of our achievements and how this will benefit the move to AET.

We also say goodbye to a number of staff across our schools and wish them every success in the future. We also welcome those joining our Trust and I am sure they will enjoy working in the AET from September.

Our next newsletter will be from the Ambition Education Trust. Look out for the new website and new values and signage in each of our schools. We look forward to a new venture with everyone associated with ATLAS Multi Academy Trust.

Have a lovely summer holiday.

Best wishes

Alan Gray



Wheatfields Junior School - Celebrating 60 years!

We had a wonderful whole school trip to St Albans on Monday 20 May. Each Year Group took part in different aspects of learning in St Albans Abbey itself during part of the day alongside Geography fieldwork; orienteering and visits to St Albans Museum. The weather was lovely and we enjoyed a whole school picnic at lunchtime.

One of the highlights of the day was coming together as a school in the nave of the Abbey where the children enjoyed listening to music played by the organist followed by beautiful whole school singing accompanied by Miss Coupe on the grand piano, which was a joy to listen to. Members of the public commented on how moving this was.

The trip was a wonderful way to not only enhance the children’s learning about their local area but also to celebrate 60 years of Wheatfields Junior School. The children were an absolute pleasure to be with and their behaviour was impeccable throughout the day.

Wheatfields Junior School - Whole school trip to St Albans (2)

Year 6 After a walk in the morning sunshine, the children arrived at St Albans Museum and Art Gallery where they looked at 2 exhibitions. The first was 'Becoming Us' and was linked to their ‘Black and British’ History topic where the children learnt about the Windrush generation’s impact on St Albans. In the afternoon, they learnt all about the monastery that used to be part of the Abbey before the dissolution of the monasteries and the impact that had on St Albans Abbey.

Year 5 In the morning the children learnt a lot about the Anglo-Saxon past of St Albans the town, as well as more about St Alban the martyr and the other principal character in the story, Amphibalus and his grisly end. In the afternoon there were 90 children running around the park next to the Abbey using their orienteering skills from P.E and their knowledge of 6 figure grid references to find concealed cones.

Year 4, Children completed field work linked to their mapwork unit in Geography, comparing land use at Bernard’s Heath to the centre of town. They were blessed by good weather which afforded a pleasant walk and time looking at some historical points of interest along the way plus the bonus of a whole school picnic in the Abbey Orchard to recharge their batteries! This was followed by a talk from a 'monk' and tour of the Abbey looking at what life was like for the monks in the monastery up to the sixteenth century.

Year 3 enjoyed their historical walk to the Abbey, observing the alms houses, St Peter's Church and imagining the Battle of the War of the Roses at Bernard's Heath. In the Abbey, the children learnt about the history of the Abbey including how the former boys' school was housed in the Lady Chapel, the importance of the shrine and its significance to pilgrims today. The children were fascinated by the remarkable story of Alban who sheltered the priest Amphibalus and was later arrested and executed on the hillside where the Abbey stands today.

Wheatfields Junior School - Whole school trip to St Albans (3)

As I am sure you will appreciate a lot of planning and preparation went into ensuring that this event was such a success and I would like to thank every single member of staff for their work to make it happen. They really are a fantastic team. Particular thanks to Mr Rafot, our History lead, for liaising with the Education Service at St Albans Abbey and to the team at the Abbey and St Albans Museum who made the children feel very welcome and supported their learning. Thank you to Mr Bristow, one of our parents who is an expert in local history, who came to talk to the children in a special assembly about historical landmarks to look out for along the route which we all found fascinating. Finally, thank you to the army of volunteers who accompanied us on the day, helping to ensure that the children were safe. We could not have done it without them and it was great to have so many parents and carers involved in what I am sure will be a day that the children will remember for a long time. 

I am immensely proud to be their Headteacher!    Janice Tearle, Headteacher

Sandringham School - Music Tour

Our Music Tour to Rotterdam went incredibly well. The students had a fantastic time performing to local audiences, including serenading a newly married couple on their first dance. This must be a first for a school Music Tour. 

Student Report:

Last Saturday, I travelled with around 60 students to Rotterdam for the annual Sandringham Music Tour. It was definitely an experience that I will never forget. When we first arrived, we had a chance to explore the city, which was beautiful and nice to get to know everyone more, especially students from other year groups. On Sunday we performed our first concert of Show Choir and Jazz Band in a square with people stopping to listen. We then went to a working museum to get to know the culture of The Netherlands more. The weather was lovely so we went to the beach and had some free time to relax.

The next day, we went on a guided boat tour down the canals and then visited Delft where we performed our next concert. A couple had just got married so Jazz Band played a song while they danced which was nice to watch. After that, we explored Delft which was fun. The final activity was glow in the dark golf which was a lovely way to end a brilliant tour.

I would definitely recommend joining one of the music groups at Sandringham as it gives you the chance to meet new people with similar interests to you and not only helps increase your confidence performing in front of crowds, but also allows you to experience new opportunities such as visiting new countries.

Thanks to all of the amazing staff for such a wonderful trip and unforgettable experience. 

Isabelle P. 

Sandringham School - D of E

Twenty one Year 12 students undertook their Gold training / practice expedition in the Peak District at the beginning of May. Despite the weather being very cold with ice on the tents in the morning, students were able to develop their navigation and campcraft skills in dry, breezy conditions.

They experienced walking in different terrain, learning to select the best routes when off path and in boggy sections. There were some interesting and varied menu choices, and their campcraft and cooking skills became more routine and efficient over the first couple of days which stood them in good stead after very long days out walking.

Students completed a 4 day expedition, honing their navigation skills and developing excellent team work skills.  They finished in high spirits having learnt a lot about walking in wild country, how changeable mountain weather in the UK is and the necessity of carrying everything on the kit list.

Thank you to the staff who were on the trip and to staff covering lessons back at school.

Wellbeing & Community

Wheatfields Junior School - Jersey Farm Woodland Park

As part of their look at life cycles Year 5 visited the Jersey Farm Woodland Park several times over the course of the year to observe how each season changes the landscape and impacts the living things that live in and interact with the meadow.

At the beginning of term the children had their Spring visit where they also take to opportunity to practise their knowledge of 6 figure grid references. They were incredibly lucky with the weather and saw some sights that are the very definition of Spring.

Ridgeway Academy - RAA Programe

The RAA Programme has recently started for selected students in Year 7. The aim of the Year 7 RAA is to bridge the gaps within transition, connecting targeted students to a range of opportunities to increase physical activity, wellbeing, confidence and self-esteem. These students will embark on a 10- week programme of physical activities, sports and workshops that will hopefully inspire them to make new friends, try new things and begin to make conscious healthier choices.

For our first week of the RAA programme we had scheduled ‘The Food Teacher’ as well as ‘Forest School of Karate’! The selected students had the opportunity to try new foods and focus on their cookery skills, whilst working independently. They created Nacho boxes with cheesy tortillas, guacamole and jalapenos. All students were able to take recipes home which should inspire them to make these meals at home for their families. They also learnt new skills such as: food preparation, food safety and also attention to detail in order to ensure the food is ready for serving.

Students also had the opportunity to take part in a session of karate run by the coach of a local karate club, they learnt how to perform a Kata, which is a sequence of patterns and movements used in karate. Our karate session has increased the confidence of students and has allowed them to take part in physical activity. The students thoroughly enjoyed their first week of the RAA programme and couldn’t wait for the activities  the following week!

Wheatfields Junior School - Music band performance

The Splinters (Thomas on vocals and guitar, Clement on guitar, Jensen on drums, Edward on piano and Cece on drums from Durham class) decided to take it up a gear with their first public performance at the Jersey Farm Summer Fair on the 1st of June. It was a brilliant day for The Splinters! Previously known as simply ‘the band’ they first got their name only one week away from this performance. They had no good ideas until Thomas, the founder of the band, looked down at the woodchip next to the trees in our playground and was inspired to come up with ‘The Splinters’!

The group first got together in Year 4 starting off as Thomas and Clement with Cece and Edward joining in Year 6 after our House Music competition last year. Jensen bravely stepped up to the challenge when Cece was unable to attend only having 3 weeks to learn the drums!

The performance was a big success! The band would like to thank all the people who helped arrange their gig including their parents, Mr Ashman and Mr Rafot who helped them practice in school. It was an amazing day with all the band members ready for their next live performance at this year’s Wheatfest on 5th July!

Garden Fields JMI School - World Day for Cultural Diversity

What an incredible day celebrating our Cultural Diversity on Tuesday 21st May. The children really enjoyed being able to celebrate their cultural uniqueness by dressing up and discussing what makes them so unique.

Many discussions were had by all and the children learnt so much about each other’s’ cultures.

We would like to thank all the parents that joined our coffee morning; it was great to meet you.

Sandringham School - Art Mural

Well done for all the Sandringham students who gave up their free time to help artist Mandy Johnson paint the huge public art mural on the wall of St Albans restaurant Bar Meze. The Mural was designed using ideas from local school children and features characters such as a minion and a Pokemon. It was painted by people of all ages from the local community. 

The mural celebrates joy and creativity and it really brightens up our city. What a fantastic experience to be part of. We hope they enjoyed creating something lasting in the community.

Ridgeway Academy - National Thank a Teacher Day

Students from Ridgeway Academy recently sent postcards to teachers to say thank you as part of the National Thank a Teacher Day held in June.

Wheatfields Infants' & Nursery School - St Alban Fun Run

Well done to all the children who took part in the St Albans Fun Run!!

Verulam School - MP visit

We would like to thank MP Daisy Cooper and  County Cllr Chris White for their visit to Verulam School in May before the dissolution of parliament. We discussed national school funding and demand for school places in St. Albans. Our year 12 politics students then had some challenging questions on local and national issues.

Sandringham School - Charity Fun Run

Our charity run held towards the end of term was another fantastic event with everyone enjoying themselves and getting around the 7km Marshalswick and Jersey Farm course. Well done to all the runners/walkers and a massive thank you to the PE faculty for their work organising Fit for Life Week activities, including the charity run. For the fun run alone we raised £2,838 which adds to an already impressive total raised over the year for our chosen charities.

Wheatfields Junior School - Equity and Diversity

On Thursday 13th June, we had the pleasure of welcoming the Hon. Dr Stuart Lawrence to our school. Stuart spoke to the whole school in an assembly, led a workshop for our Year 6 children and met with our Equity and Diversity group, sharing key messages about being kind; following the ‘Golden Rule’ of always treating others how you would like to be treated and how every single person has the power to make positive changes.

Both the staff and the children found him to be inspiring. Visit our website page: to see more about his visit and the work of our Equity and Diversity group. 


Wheatfields Junior School - Environmental Area

Pond Grand Opening

Our Eco- Warriors have been doing lots of hard work to transform our Environmental Area over the year. A few months ago, we were very lucky to have a pond donated by the family of Tommy in Year 5. Since then, Tommy has been working hard to get the pond area ready. It is now looking fantastic and just before half term, there was a grand opening ceremony when Tommy invited family and friends to come and see him cut the ribbon to officially open the pond and celebrate all the hard work.

Tommy has written: ‘I've enjoyed the opening of the pond so much. I even got £20 from my nanny because of all the hard work that I put in! Thank you all for helping my idea come to life and I hope that all the children at Wheatfields School enjoy the pond as much as I do for many years to come". Well done Tommy!

Skyswood Primary & Nursery School - Environmental Area

Our Environmental Area is really beginning to take shape, hopefully in time for brighter weather and a productive summer term, in terms of growing our own plants and vegetables. Thanks to Mr Cameron, each class now has a designated raised bed. Our children are thinking carefully about what they might wish to plant in their allocated area, so we look forward to keeping our eyes on how this area develops over the course of the summer term!

Verulam School - Eco News

At Verulam, we are dedicated to fostering a culture of environmental stewardship and sustainability.  We believe that educating our students about the importance of protecting our planet is essential to ensuring a sustainable future for generations to come.  We are also proud of our efforts to reduce our ecological footprint through various sustainable practices across the school site including recent developments as follows:

  • EcoSchools Green flag status achieved
  • Solar panels now provide 60-70% of the school’s electricity needs during the summer months
  • Electric minibus being leased in September with EV charger points being installed over the summer

AAT Trust - Solar Panels

In our effort to be more sustainable across the Trust, we have now installed 1962 panels across Ridgeway, Sandringham and Verulam. We chose Earthpoints Ltd for this project as this company plant trees when they install panels, and with three planted for every 10 panels that they put in place- this means that they have now planted 589 trees for the installations they have made at AAT schools to date.

Earthpoints use TreeApp to carry out this planting, working directly with local teams and planting in a number of locations across the world. The 589 trees for the AAT installation will be planted in the Red Panda project in Nepal. Not only does this area have a good track record in terms of trees planted and survival rates, but this planting will also add to the habitat for some endangered species, namely red pandas and leopards.

This means that not only will the Trust continue to reduce its carbon footprint by installing and generating clean energy, but these trees will ensure an added and ongoing carbon effect and provide a habitat for endangered species, which increases the benefit to the planet even more.

Curriculum News

Garden Fields JMI School - History

The Romans!

Before half term Year 3 went on an informative trip to Verulamium Museum. The children learnt all about the day to day life of Romans including their trades, cooking and games.

To continue our Emperors and Empires unit of learning, we enjoyed a fun Roman Day on Monday 3rd June. Lots of us were dressed as Romans and we had an interesting day of fun activities, which included: learning about roman numerals, debating who was the best emperor, roman dancing and making roman shields.

Verulam School - Computing

Robotics have landed at Verulam! This half term has seen our Year 7’s delve into the world of physical programming. We have invested funding, given to us through training a PGCE student last year, to purchase a small number of ‘tanks’. These tanks are programmed by our students on computers, downloaded into our micro:bit boards and loaded into our tanks! Students can then see their code come to life in a very real and physical way.

Students have already mastered moving and turning the tanks, with some already racing against each other. Students have then learned about ultrasonic sensors and how they can detect how far away objects are. The tanks were then programmed to stop before hitting objects and further programmed to be able to turn away from obstacles and carry on moving.

Next we will be looking at how light sensors on the underneath of the tank can be used to follow any dark line, allowing them to move along any pathway that has been laid out.

Future plans will be for students to complete a series of robotics challenges to see who is the greatest! We have applied for some PTA funding for an AI attachment called a Huskylens which will allow us to incorporate AI to control the tank through facial and object recognition. Hopefully we will be successful in our bid and can add this exciting element to our curriculum.

Mr Schalker

Wheatfields Infants' & Nursery School - House Challenge

In our House Challenge this half term, all of the children demonstrated the skills they have been learning in D & T.

Nursery designed Super Hero costumes

Reception designed boats

Year 1 designed vehicles with wheels and axles and

Year 2 created models based on rain forests.

Verulam School - Creative Arts

Summer Showcase

Bringing the year to a close, the Creative Arts team showcased some talented students with their Summer Showcase evening on Tuesday 5th July. 

Kicking off the proceedings was the Chamber Orchestra with Third Chorale from St John Passion and they finished the first half with the traditional folk song – Londonderry Air – perhaps a nod to our new Headteacher?  A splendid recital of The Imperial March began the second half with an unexpected guest: Darth Vader himself!!! 

Representing the Music department were the GCSE group, split into two bands: The Verulam Jazz Men and the Verulam Allegro group. The Verulam Allegro men rocked the evening with their repertoire of Vida La Vida - Coldplay and Somewhere Only We Know By Keane.

Like the Jazz Men, they played two songs: The Return of the Prodigal Son and Watermelon Man. Considering this is the first time the groups have played live together, they sounded professional and bought the Summer sound to Verulam throughout the evening.

Representing the Drama department was an excellent excerpt from Macbeth including a sword fight!  Our very own Mr Mackenzie starred as Baldrick in the poignant Blackadder sketch: Goodbyeee from Blackadder goes forth. He was accompanied by the GCSE Drama students.  The rich range of talent on show made us laugh, titter, smile and feel sorrow. Performances made all the more relevant by recent World events.

An no one could forget our solo performers, singing and dancing!

Verulam is rich in talent and no words can convey the courage and bravery that these students demonstrated.  Each performance was carefully rehearsed with hours of practice and polishing.  Hard work does not go unrewarded and tonight’s students deserve all the praise for their fabulous show! 

If you didn’t make it this year, do come along next Summer.

Mrs Tomlin

Skyswood Primary & Nursery School - DT

For our final DT unit of the year, things got messy as we made our very own chocolates and chocolate boxes! We begun by doing some primary and secondary research about existing chocolate boxes to see how brands grab the attention of their customers with eye-catching and tempting branding. We decided what we liked and used these ideas to design our own brands and chocolate product. Once our designs were done, it was time to create and build our chocolate boxes. For this, we needed to carefully cut and score card to ensure our boxes were sturdy and professional looking. Once constructed, it was time to get messy with chocolate – yum!

To finish off the project, we evaluated our chocolate boxes and chocolates, thinking about what makes our products fit for purpose, what makes our products unique and what we would improve or change if we did it again.

Wheatfields Infants' & Nursery School - Design & Technology

Children in Year 1 recreated the Great Fire of London on the playground. Firefighters from St Albans Fire Station’s Green Watch were on hand to oversee the proceedings and put out the controlled fire if necessary!

The children created cardboard models of 17th Century London as part of their Design and Technology and Science lessons. They set up the buildings in line with how they would have been years ago, some of the buildings were placed very close together in very narrow streets and some were spaced further apart. As the replica of London went up in flames the children were delighted to see that they had correctly predicted the way the fire would travel and why the fire had spread so quickly in the narrow streets. The children learned why The Great Fire of London caused so much destruction and had been so difficult to extinguish.

Sandringham School - Geography

In April Year 12 and 13 geographers embarked on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to the land of fire and ice – Iceland.

Students ventured onto Solheimajokull, a breathtaking glacier where they embarked on an exhilarating glacier walk. They encountered the enchanting waterfalls of Seljalandsfoss, Gullfoss, and Skogafoss. They also visited Thingvellir National Park, a place of profound historical and geological significance. Here, they stood upon the meeting point of two tectonic plates, witnessing firsthand the powerful forces that shape our planet over millennia.

They also indulged in a moment of relaxation at the Secret Lagoon. Nestled amidst steamy geothermal springs, this hidden gem offered us all a serene retreat, allowing us to unwind and rejuvenate amidst Iceland's natural wonders.

But perhaps the most memorable moment occurred as night fell on the second night; we were treated to nature's most spectacular show – the Northern Lights. Dancing across the Arctic sky in a mesmerising display of colour and light, the aurora borealis was a sight to behold, perhaps one of the modern-day natural wonders of the world.

A big thank you to Miss Goss, Miss Pratley, Mrs Fricker, Mrs Mouncey and Mrs Kincaid for giving up their time to accompany the students on the trip, and of course the students for representing the school impeccably.

Mr N Miller

Wheatfields Junior School - Music

Year 5 Lowry Class have been pioneering learning to play the ukulele as part of their music curriculum this term which they are all enjoying. We were delighted to be able purchase these instruments and others using donations from last year’s summer music concert and some grant funding.

Our Year 6 children have visited the Sandringham School music department to have lessons on making digital music. The children had a great time, enjoying the chance to use Garage Band to create their own compositions which varied from chillout house tunes to classical music, hard rock and disco beats.

We definitely have some potential music artists of the future amongst us.

Sandringham School - STEM

Our talented team of Year 8 students, including Caleb M, Hannah E, Dexter W, Tim C, Sophia V, and Valen C, have won the championship of the Hertfordshire district in the Faraday's Challenge Day competition organised by the Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET). The students spent the entire day designing, building, and presenting a real-world engineering solution and a related hardware prototype model, addressing a specific topic. This STEM challenge provided them with an engaging and enriching experience. This impressive achievement by our Year 8 students showcases their dedication, teamwork, and problem-solving abilities, and we are proud of their success.

Ridgeway Academy - Computer Science

Year 7 have been working on Scratch. This is a visual programming language that allows students to create their own interactive stories, games and animations. Through their design projects they learn to think creatively, reason systematically, and work collaboratively. Students have used the scripts to start coding their own games. The program is accessible online, some of the learners have developed their skills and have continued their projects from home.

Year 8 students have been learning about GUI (Graphical User Interface) of an app and understating the CLI (Command Line Interface) that is involved in developing an app. They are using App Lab, which is a programming environment where you can make simple apps in the browser. Students are learning to code in JavaScript with either blocks or text, then run the program to see the outcome of the code on the app.

Year 9 have been using the text-based programming language Python. This is a high-level, general-purpose programming language used by companies like Google and Facebook. It supports multiple programming paradigms, including structured, object oriented and functional programming. Students have developed simple programs using different data types, understanding variables, loops and subroutines.

Year 10 have completed their Computer Science Mock Exam. They have been working extremely hard in their first year of GCSE. 

Year 11 have been working extremely hard in their final year. They have already completed their first exam paper (Computer Systems). Exam preparations are currently taking place for the Computational Thinking Algorithm paper. 

Garden Fields JMI School - EYFS Trip

The Reception children thoroughly enjoyed their first school trip to Shepreth Wildlife Park. They had a fantastic day and observed a number of animals including bats, tigers, monkeys, porcupines, bunnies, donkeys, tortoises, lemurs, crocodiles and many more!

They also attended an interactive 'animal habitats' workshop and we were delighted to see how much they had remembered from our lessons over the past few months.

Ridgeway Academy - Draw to Learn

We recently held a Draw to Learn week for Yr groups 7 to 10. During this week subject teachers have used drawing activities to help students learn new information. We are pleased to share some of the brilliant work coming out of our teachers and students. I am so impressed with the level of understanding demonstrated through drawing and excited to see what else emerges throughout the week.

Wheatfields Infants' & Nursery School - Science

Children in Year 2 enjoyed a trip to Whipsnade Zoo at the end of May. The focus of the trip was consolidating their Science learning and bringing learning to life!

The children looked in depth at Africa and Asia and took part in a workshop about rainforests. They learned how animals and plants depend on each other and the importance of plant life to the wider ecosystem. They also explored animal habitats and what animals need to survive.

The children took on an additional challenge to record interesting facts about animals found on the signs around the zoo, the winners were Zayan, Leo, Aidan, Tobiah, Naimul and Harry, well done !

Verulam School - STEAM club

STEAM club takes flight

After 4 months of meticulous engineering and planning, Verulam’s STEAM club headed to Bushey Park to take part in the NGL Water Rockets challenge along with 44 other schools.

Students were keen to showcase their ideas and engineering skills and with some 3D printed fins (that needed to be filled down due to the points potentially being a hazard). Lots of gleeful faces after the first rockets were fired at the targets, even the ones that fell short on the first attempt.

STEAM is all about trial and error and lots of adjustments led to bigger successes in the second and third round. The final round encouraged the team to protect an egg within their rockets, with success for most of the teams involved.

With lots of adjustments made to rockets and launchers due to some technical difficulties, the students scored many wins (including longest time in the air, consistent points scoring and longest time for a sticker to be in the air).

All in all, a fantastic day spent in the sun, with plenty of ideas for next year and a couple of trophies to parade for this amazing STEAM adventure with clear links established with NGL for next year to come in and work with the school.

Mr Greaves

Skyswood Primary & Nursery School - Art

Seed Mandalas

Our reception class have been making their own ‘seed mandalas’ in lids of jars. The mandalas have a salt dough base. The children then choose their seeds carefully, thinking about colour, size and shape, before arranging them in a picture or a pattern. Many of the children opted for ‘face’ designs using their seeds, whilst others chose floral designs, or created neat borders around the inner perimeter of their lid. Well done Year R! 

Watercolour Flowers

Year 6 have been experimenting with watercolour techniques on flowers as an introduction to their art unit on landscape painting, where they will develop these skills further and have the opportunity to compare and contrast the skills required when using watercolours and acrylics. This unit will ultimately link to their field study in Snowdonia and go on to focus on mountain landscapes.

Skyswood Primary & Nursery School - Geography River Study

Our Year 3 pupils enjoyed a memorable day in Wheathampstead, carrying out a river study on the River Lea.

Split into three different groups, the children measured the width and depth of the river in a ten-metre sample area, alongside a speed of flow activity that very much resembled Pooh Sticks, and kick studies that revealed a wide range of wild life, including several fish and larvae. The children were particularly excited by their findings in the kick studies, but were careful to ensure that all creatures were returned to their natural habitat following the activities.

In the afternoon, several photographs were taken along the riverside to support the Painting from Nature art unit, which includes river landscapes and techniques for painting reflections in the water. The children had a fantastic time navigating their way back through the river after a short riverside walk, where they met two local fishermen and were eager to ask lots of carefully considered questions.

A big thank you must go to our fantastic team of parent helpers and students who joined us on the day.

Awards & Achievements

Ridgeway Academy - British Four Nations Competition

Congratulations to Jake who won a bronze medal in his Individual Cadet Fight and again, in the Cadet Teams Event. The British Four Nations Competition is one of the biggest competitions an association can do, and Jake has been offered a trial with the England team.

We are very proud of his achievement — Well done Jake!

Garden Fields JMI School - 2Km run

Maisie, Y6 Curlew, recently competed in the Wheathamstead 2Km Run and we are delighted to say that she came 1st!

Well done, Maisie!

Sandringham School - Herts County Cup Football

Success for the girls U16 football team who won the Herts County Cup Final for the first time in the history of Sandringham!

This was a thrilling game with our girls 4:0 up, to finally win 5:4. A superb win against St Clement Danes – well done everyone, we are incredibly proud of your achievement and you will be an inspiration to all other teams this year.

Verulam School - Sporting Success

Verulam School has achieved remarkable success in sports, making it into the top 200 sporting schools in the country according to the School Sports Magazine awards. Additionally, Verulam has been awarded the Schools Sports Mark Gold Award for the third consecutive year, recognising the outstanding sports provision in both lessons and extracurricular activities.

In football, the Year 11 team won the District Cup, triumphing over Nicholas Breakspear with a 3-2 victory in the final. However, they narrowly missed out on achieving the double, losing in the County Cup final to a strong Chancellors School. The Year 8 team also celebrated success, winning the County Plate competition by defeating Ridgeway in the final.

Former students have had amazing years. Notably, Harrison Smith made his debut for Stevenage, while Seb Ferdinand signed his first professional contract with Arsenal. Thomas Galvez made his full senior international debut for Finland against Scotland, and Hayley Ladd captained Wales and won the FA Cup with Manchester United.

Current students continue to shine across a range of sports. Oscar N in Year 10 and Tom BD in Year 8 have excelled nationally in athletics, and Noah S has achieved remarkable success in national tennis competitions.

Congratulations to all our athletes for their outstanding achievements!

Garden Fields - Young Writers

Clara in Y3 entered the creative writing competition with Young Writers and had her poem published in the book ‘Once upon a dream’. A copy of the book will be in the British Library. She brought the book into class to share with her classmates.

Clara is very proud of her achievement and so are we!

Ridgeway Academy - D of E news

While former Head Student Megan S was in Sixth Form she completed her Gold Duke of Edinburgh award. She was invited to visit Buckingham Palace with her Grandma on Monday May 13th to receive this award and celebrate her achievement and also met the Duke of Edinburgh.

Congratulations Megan!

Sandringham School - Teaching Programme

Congratulations to the twenty two Year 12 students who have successfully completed the Alban Education Sixth Formers into Teaching programme. Following the success of the programme in the last two years, this year English, Languages, Maths, PRE and Science have taken on the challenge as well. This innovative programme aims to give Year 12s an insight into the world of teaching as well as develop their confidence, communication and leadership skill. Students get the opportunity to work together with subject specialist teachers, peers and younger students. Weekly sessions equip them with the theoretical framework to be able to observe lessons meaningfully, as well as to teach their chosen subject at KS3, KS4 and at a local primary school. The primary school stage is particularly rewarding and enriching for everyone involved, and we have been overwhelmed by the incredible feedback the teachers and students alike have given our students.

As part of the programme, students are required to complete a Learning Journal as they go through the different stages and we have been very impressed with their level of their reflection and their professionalism. We would like to thank everyone involved for being so welcoming and encouraging to our students. We hope to have inspired the next generation of teachers and are looking forward to following their journeys!

Skyswood Primary & Nursery School - Football success

Our school football team proudly lifted the St Albans City Cup for the first time in the school’s history. Skyswood have won their league on several occasions and were joint winners of the Year 6 6-a-side tournament this year, but surpassed all by beating the Herts County champions, Killigrew, by two goals to nil in a thrilling final at Colney Heath. 

The team had one of the toughest routes to the final, knocking out Wheatfields in the quarter-final and then overcoming Bernard’s Heath in the semi-final before going head to head with the county champions and coming out on top. Well done to all of the boys in the team, you have been an absolute credit to the school throughout the season and this was a wonderful way to round the season off!

Wheatfields Junior School - The London Ballet Company

Huge congratulations to Josie in Year 6 who has been selected selected for The London Ballet Company.

Josie has shared: ‘I went to a workshop with the London Ballet Company. It was also an audition. We started with a fun warm-up then we learned a dance. This dance was really hard to learn and it was quite long. We then got told we could show our own skills. We then performed to parents. The next day, I got an email saying I had got into The London Ballet Company. I am starting on the 1 st of September. We are getting a jacket of theirs and some trousers.

Every month, we are going into London to learn some dances. At Easter, there will be a jive day course. It will be extreme and really difficult. We are getting an agent. These agents are going to try and get me jobs on TV or Broadway even. This experience is going to be life changing and so much fun.’

Well done Josie!

Garden Fields JMI School - HfL Maths Challenge

On Thursday 6th June, four children from Year 3 took part in the heats for the annual Herts For Learning Maths Challenge. The challenge was an online, inter-school competition.

It gave our children the opportunity to apply their mathematics knowledge and teamwork skills to solve problems and answer challenging questions; putting their reasoning skills to the test. Each round relied on much more than mere mathematical calculation. The teams were challenged with problem-solving, reasoning, estimation, visualisation and arithmetic from across the Mathematics curriculum.

The hour-long heat comprised of a set of 4 equallyweighted rounds: Round 1: General maths questions Round 2: Estimation round Round 3: Spot that shape! Round 4: More general maths questions Teams from any school, within Hertfordshire, across the UK and overseas, took part in this competition.

We are excited to announce- Garden Fields has made it to the FINAL!

Verulam School - Young Referee

A huge well done to Y12 student Jacob H who continues making excellent progress as a young referee in Hertfordshire!

At the beginning of May he was appointed and officiated the Beds & Herts Women’s County Cup Final. Jacob is the youngest referee to earn this achievement.

Well done!