Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Guide Dog Visit

Donnington and Tintagel classes have been learning their functional skills through the subject of Guide Dogs and today we were visited by Jenny, Sue, Kim, Patterson and Harley.

Jenny is a Guide Dog Walker, which means that she trains guide dog puppies. She brought her current puppy Patterson in to school and talked about the training that Patterson is having to do.

Kim is blind and she has a guide dog called Harley. Kim and Harley also came into school, along with a Guide Dog trainer Sue. It was incredible to hear how Harley has changed Kim's life for the better.

It was fascinating to see the difference between Patterson and Harley! Harley sat patiently throughout the session whereas Patterson sometimes wanted to play. We are sure that by the end of his training, Patterson will be as calm as Harley.

We really enjoyed hearing what all three ladies had to say and we loved seeing the dogs!

We are very grateful that they gave up their time to come and talk to us.

Football Fun

Some of our Post-16 students competed in a regional football tournament at The Madejski Stadium yesterday. They had a great time and as always were great ambassadors for the school. They worked hard and managed to come 6th so well done for their determination and hard work.

Well done to Alisha, Bradley, Ryan, Ricky, John and Tyrell

Thursday, 9 February 2017

NSPCC Number Day

Last week, the whole school got involved in NSPCC Numbers Day. Here are some photographs of the wonderful activities that took place. Lots of pupils and staff wore number-related clothing and we sold lots of cakes and made £130 for NSPCC - so thank you to everyone.

Go Afternoon! Success

Pupils have been working hard all term completing their Laser Qualifications at The Furniture Project, Newbury.  Each week seven pupils visited the site where they took part in either Bike Maintenance or Basic Carpentry.
(Instructor Stephen Smith with Joseph, George and Christopher)
Three pupils have been working together to build a range of different furniture to be sold in the visitors shop. Christopher Pearcy said, ‘I want to stay at the Furniture Project working with Stephen. He was really nice and I would like to thank him for helping me.’
(Instructor Paul Black with Brandon, Kallum, Dylan and Aaron)
Many bikes in disrepair are donated to the project. In pairs, pupils have been working under the tuition of Paul Black where they were required to break the bikes down into parts and rebuild to an excellent safety standard. Instructor Paul kindly donated two bikes to The Castle School. Pupil, Kallum Ross said, ‘the course was really good and I now feel confident to work on my BMX at home.’
An excellent terms work boys, well done!
If you would like to visit the Furniture Project then you can find it on the Hambridge Road Industrial Estate. Click here for their website and to find out more about this exciting project and what they do.

Friday, 3 February 2017

Wonderful Quotes

I thought I would share with you some of the wonderful quotes form students, staff and visitors about our catering at the Special Needs Information Day:

Quotes from our students who took part:

Jon and Oliver said "It was brilliant"
Danny said "I have never worked so hard"
Laura said "This has been my best morning this week"
Tyrrel wanted to stay and did!!!!!
Nathan "I felt so proud, that I was part of it!"
Rodney "I had a great day"

Stall holders comments!

"Oh my gosh, diets all around!! if we have not had enough already, now they are baking scones!!"
"I have resisted all day, but the scones I cannot resist"
"Your students are so relaxed and seem to be enjoying themselves"
"What a great team you all are"
"We did not expect this!"
Melissa Hutchinson, came and praised us for doing an incredibly amazing job!

Customer comments

"Where is The Castle School"
"What these are The Castle School students"
"Incredible food"
"Great service"
"Oh my gosh" do you do takeaway!

Catering Success!

On Wednesday this week, a talented group of students and staff from The Castle School provided catering to the West Berkshire Special Needs and Disability Information Day. This event, organised by Parent Voice was very well attended. In fact, here are some facts from the day:

Our team served about 200 people food!
and over 300 drinks!

Jan Vaughn, who organised the wonderful Castle Caterers said " I cannot put into words, the amount of praise from people at the event and the very humbling feeling as result of yesterday. Stall holders and members of the public, including Jane Seymour could not believe the professionalism, level of service and the conduct of all our students, some of whom were there for 10 hours!!."

Jo Maxwell-Heron, Family Services Co-ordinator for Rose Road said "What a day!   Thank you from the bottom of my heart to you and your amazing team for all what you did for us yesterday!  It was just fab. You must be a very proud lady today of the young people that you brought with you and the lovely team that came along to help.
Just amazing and the food was incredible.  THANK YOU."

For the event, Jan organised a morning team and afternoon team. The morning team cooked bacon butties for 50 people, and proceeded to prepare our cakes. They made the butter cream icing and decorated all the cakes for sale on-site.The afternoon team gave a real boost and cleared us through a very busy period and then made fresh scones whilst every one watched on!

A huge thank you to the students: Laura, Danny, John, Chris, Bradley, Tyrell, Rodney, Oliver and Nathan for all their hard work. And a massive thank you to the staff who helped out to enable the students to deliver the wonderful catering: Liz Magurn, Briony Vaughn, Lynne Starr, Gill Foster and Sharon Giles.

And, of course, none of this would have been possible without the passion, enthusiasm ands skill of Jan Vaughn. Thank you Jan.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Read about our new Music Scholarships for 2017-2018

The governors of The Castle School are supporting the creation of a exciting new Music Scholarship to provide support for instrumental or singing lessons. To read more and how to apply please click here