The West Bridgford School

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Bridgford Swept Aside by Conquering Chilwell

On the 13th of October, West Bridgford B team faced up to Chilwell A team. One factor was certainly not on our side; the weather, with torrential rain pouring down while icy winds swept through our home playing fields. The team to face Chilwell was: Andrew King, Vince Machin, Elliot Newman, Ed Foulds, Charlie Lilley, Indy Gill, Alex Nolan (C), Sam Lacy, Eddie Townsend, James Harvey and Tom Carver with subs Amaan Razak, Louie Bickley-Blackwood, Zack Warton and Ryan Snowden. Hoping to claim a win to progress to the next round and avenge the defeat of last year, we were raring to go.
The game kicked off with Bridgford putting a high amount of pressure on the shaky Chilwell back line in the opening passages. Possession was shared with both teams demonstrating an assortment of crisp passing and high intensity with not much time on the ball for either side. As minutes drew on Chilwell started to dominate with style by bringing it out from the back and launching balls through the defence. Around the ten minute mark, Bridgford had what proved to be their best chance of the half with a move stemming from tough tackling from Sam and Alex with the ball being slotted through to James upfront. After a good run, he just missed the target. However the deadlock was broken in approximately the 15th minute with a goal for Chilwell. It was a swift attack and a good ball that dissected the defence with a clinically ice cool finish from their striker. No sooner had the kick off been taken that Bridgford were in trouble again. Chilwell seized possession and with their wing losing his marker, he sent in a sweeping cross into the danger area which was converted coolly by their striker. Bridgford were stunned. 2-0 down in the space of two minutes! Heads didn’t drop and we believed that we could get a goal. However these hopes were dashed almost immediately after the restart when a well worked move was converted by Chilwell – 3-0.  Determination shone through with Bridgford maintaining possession for a good ten minutes with some neat moves however no end product came. In the 30th minute, disaster struck once again with their striker converting from a one on one with Andrew. Bridgford kept it tight until half-time which required good defending from full-backs Charlie and Vince.
Changes were made at half-time with Ryan coming on for Eddie, Louie coming on for Ed and Zack coming on for Tom. 4 goals to the good Chilwell were confident and started to again dominate possession. Not long into the 2nd half they were awarded a corner. With Bridgford unable to clear their lines there was a goalmouth scramble in the box with one of their players poking the ball in for their 5th. Bridgford battled on even though defeat was likely Showing great character we regularly pushed forward with Indy and Ryan bombing down the wing. They were aided by Louie and Zack who distributed the ball well throughout the half. In spite of all their efforts, Bridgford were thwarted in front of goal on the night. This was tough, as their play deserved a better reward.  No such misfortune for the opposition as another simple yet clinical finish from Chilwell after a good move down the right made it 6. Midway through the half, Amaan came on for James. As the cold rainy winds swept in there was more misery for Bridgford as a 7th goal came from a deflected shot from the edge of the 16 yard box, looping over the unlucky Andrew. This condemned the game to a rout. With the game gone and spirits diminished, Chilwell hit an 8th just before the final whistle blew.  Bridgford knocked out of the cup, trudged off the saturated pitch. They had given it their all, but sadly it was just not their day.
Overall there were a lot of positives to take from the game with us making lots of chances and not letting our heads go down. In football games like this can happen. We battled to the end nonetheless. Finally big thanks to Mr Kent for organising the game and to Bradley and Jude who were linesmen.

By Alexander Nolan 9F

Bridgford sparkle in Sutton and Ashfield show

On Saturday the 4th of October 34 eager athletes travelled to Sutton in Ashfield Recreational Park to take part in the first of the three cross country races of the season. It was immediately clear that all team members wanted to re-create the immense efforts of last year and were all raring to go. The heavy rain which lashed down certainly did not affect our overall performance with many outstanding feats delivered across the board. The schedule of the races was as follows: Year 8/9 boys opening and year 8/9 girls closing the event with year 7 boys and girls and year 10/11 boys and girls placed in between.

Having won the team event last year the year 8/9 boys certainly staked a claim to retain the title this year with 7 athletes in the top 30 out of 70. This certainly shows a cracking squad with Joe Mitchell leading the team in 12th closely followed by Teo Ayodeji-Ansell in 13th. A few places behind them were Toby Percival in 15th and Vince Machin 19th, Flynn Cross 22nd, Alex Nolan 26th and Harry Jones 27th. This rocketed West Bridgford A into 2nd and West Bridgford B in 7th - a very strong performance. For Year 7 boys this is of course their first taste of cross country and they performed brilliantly with 9 runners populating the top 35 places. The headline performance came from Toby Hullis in 4th closely followed up by Louis Dwane in 12th and Jonny Lawrence in 15th and Josh Rutherford in 19th. The year 7 girls kept up the high intensity of effort and maintained the standard of performance including an amazing 6 places in the top 25 – 4 of whom secured spots in the top 20. These consisted of Harriet Machin, Olivia Langrishe, Sophie Lloyd, Rosie Mitchell, Annabel Cresswell and Ellie Day respectively. Collectively a great performance all round from Year 7 who showed great potential for the next two races. Following on from the Year 7’s were Year 10/11 girls and boys. The lone performer in the girls’ year 10/11 category, Charlotte Hudson, finished strongly in 5th. Valuable places were recorded in the penultimate boys’ race with Charlie Hammond claiming 11th place being shortly followed by Dan Aldred in 14th. The final event, the girls’ Year 8/9 race, saw an exceptional dual performance with twins Bella and Florence Reed coming 3rd and 4th respectively.

Clearly a spectacular performance all round from everyone who ran. Thanks to Mr Kent, Miss Rogers and Mr Alton for organising team.

By Alex Nolan 9F

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Last Tuesday we welcomed Year 11 students and their parents to our Post 16 Open Evening. This proved a very popular and enjoyable event with some 300 students from both West Bridgford and other schools in attendance. Staff were certainly kept very busy answering lots of sharp and searching questions about all aspects of sixth form life. 

One of the ‘hot’ topics was the school’s plan for implementing the forthcoming A-level reforms. As you may know, from September 2015 around half of the A levels we teach change to fully linear courses with the rest set to follow in 2016. What this means is that the new A levels will be assessed in one go at the end of year 13. AS levels are to be ‘decoupled’ so that they no longer count to the full A level but become standalone qualifications that can be taken in either year 12 or year 13.

When the current AS level system was first introduced in 2000 it wasn’t initially popular in educational circles. However, it’s fair to say that the qualification has subsequently proved its worth. For example, it does encourage students to take on courses they haven’t come across at GCSE such as psychology or economics, knowing that if that choice doesn’t quite work out they can drop the subject at the end of year 12 but still have something to show for their efforts. University admissions tutors in particular say that AS grades provide them with a credible picture of a student’s academic development, helping them to make realistic offers through the UCAS process. Certainly the results at the end of year 12 give students the opportunity to reflect on their strengths and weaknesses, perhaps redoubling their efforts if the outcome wasn’t what they’d hoped or allowing them to concentrate on their stronger subjects in year 13.

At the moment we are very reluctant to lose all of the benefits we perceive in AS assessments, particularly their usefulness as a progress check and ‘gateway’ to the next stage. We therefore plan to offer programmes based on a similar model to our current approach. This means that students will start a 3 or 4 A level programme leading to year 12 AS exams in the first instance with progression onto full A level in year 13.  This model, of course, depends on the new AS levels being fully co-teachable with full A-levels, as was promised in the reforms. Although this does appear to be the case for the majority of specifications we have looked at so far, there are still some details to be worked out particularly regarding courses with large coursework elements.  Whatever the final conclusion we will, of course, continue to keep a close eye on all developments and potential sixth form students and their parents can be assured that we will be fully set for the start of their new A level courses in September.

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