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BBC News - Education & Family
Welcome to Pontypridd High School
Written by Huw Cripps   
Monday, 01 September 2008 20:04

hcIntroduction by Huw Cripps (Headteacher)

We hope you find our web site interesting and useful. We are a happy school, with a caring and committed staff, who work hard to make sure every child develops to the full of his or her abilities. We believe in encouraging the individual talents of all pupils in every aspect of school life whether curricular or non - curricular. We always celebrate achievement in both effort and attainment. We are committed, as a school, to improvement, to raising levels of achievement for all ages and for all pupils. Such improvement is only possible through the combined will and effort of all those connected with the school: governors, teaching and non-teaching staff, pupils, parents and the Local Education Authority. We are sure that you will also support this philosophy and believe, with us, that this very largely explains the success and the popularity of the school.

May I take this opportunity to introduce myself as the new Headteacher of Pontypridd High School and welcome you to our Spring Newsletter. Moving from one school to another is an opportunity to work with new colleagues and over the last term I have greatly enjoyed meeting all the staff. I much appreciated their support and humour through the last term! Getting to know the students and their families is a more gradual process but whether in the classroom, sport or through the inspirational production of Godspell there is no doubt that we also

have hugely talented children. Having been educated in my home town of Bridgend, I returned there to begin my career as a teacher of Geography. I moved to Cardinal Newman as the Head of Geography and at the same school eventually became Deputy Headteacher. In this role I met with staff and visited Pontypridd High School on many occasions. To that extent I am very familiar with the issues that our school faces as a comprehensive in Rhondda Cynon Taff and within the wider Welsh perspective. As a geographer at heart I am pleased to continue working in this part of South Wales as it offers our students so many different experiences. I believe it is important that we make every effort to make students learning as positive as possible and give them the opportunity to visit these places for themselves.

Experiences over this last term have confirmed to me how good a school Pontypridd High School is. We have huge potential to grow further and to serve the needs of Pontypridd and its surrounding population. Our school site has an industrial history that is an important legacy for our achievements today. Our new Lower School Teaching Block and Sports Hall are a testimony to the hard work of Mr Phil Raybould together with the Albion Partnership and excellent support from people in the local community. Having taught in four different comprehensives I can assure you that such ideal learning environments are not present in every school !

Pontypridd High School should be the focus of our community, providing different people of all ages with a quality service. Our E3+ status will enable the school to offer a wide range of exciting experiences and this is a wonderful opportunity for us to work more closely together. Essential in this is the opportunity to extend our links with primary partners. Significant progress has been made in ensuring our younger students come to Pontypridd High School in the knowledge that they will be well supported and develop the skills necessary to reach their potential.

I believe we should make every effort at Pontypridd High School to give everyone the opportunity to learn and make progress in a way that is most appropriate for them. Respect for each other and the contribution we all make is an essential part of this. All staff have high expectations about how each individual conducts themselves. I want all students to recognise the importance of accepting responsibility for their actions and make every effort to ensure people have a positive impression of Pontypridd High School and its environment.

I have been greatly impressed by the commitment of staff towards accepting new ideas and being relentless in the pursuit of raising standards. As Headteacher I am aware that each individual has different skills and talents. It is important that we seek to provide a range of learning pathways that best suit different students and meet their aspirations. Where we are assured of a quality provision I am prepared to work with a range of partners such as other schools, colleges and the University to ensure Pontypridd High School students have the best choice of courses to suit their needs. Our School mission is