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All too often as leaders we get caught up in the busy hustle and bustle of college life without having time to stand back and reflect. This week I met with the executive team and governors to celebrate our key areas of success whilst also acknowledging the challenges we may face.

At the forefront of the Learning Centre strengths has to be our students themselves and how an often personalised curriculum design enables them to develop the skills required to make progress towards appropriate future destinations.

I look forward to sharing three individual success stories within next week’s blog.

Whilst budget and staffing continue to be areas of challenge, it must also be acknowledged that, in partnership with families, the staff team are central in supporting students on a daily basis, enabling them to achieve their desired goals.

Many of our students enjoy being in the kitchen and producing some very tasty meals. Here’s a report from Mrs Walters..

It’s been a busy and productive week in food technology with all students producing a variety of different dishes. Most of the groups have made a Katsu curry with Ryan completing his second lesson with the Nurture Group. Ryan worked hard and showed a mature attitude producing a meal he thoroughly enjoyed..

In our leisure cooking lessons, the groups made chocolate chip cookies which they enjoyed sampling before helping make crispy cakes for Children in Need.

In the food industry lesson this week the students made caramel cupcakes. They all worked well together completing each task as if they were working on a production line..

A special thanks to Shahmuneer and Matthew for the cakes..

..and Ryan for my curry..

I’m looking forward to next week’s fare!

Over recent months, we have been lucky enough to have input from external providers ‘Touchdown Dance’ as part of the ‘Dance and Drama’ option programme. Here’s a brief report from the team:

‘Touchdown Dance’ is based in Sale and works locally, nationally and abroad to provide opportunities for those most excluded from participating in Dance. We have worked with organisations for the visually impaired and have a dance company with 3 visually impaired dancers.

We were awarded a BBC ‘Children In Need ‘grant to work in schools in Greater Manchester and to make a difference to young people’s confidence, physical and emotional well-being.

We love working together with the students and staff at New Bridge School and Learning Centre. The differences we hope to make are:

  • ‘More confident in engaging within group activities’
  • ‘Improved sense of positive self-identity’
  • ‘Improved use of expressive language’

We work together with movement, games and interactions in one to one and group relationships using soft inflatable balls and fabrics. The work is based in developmental movement and sensory-motor integration and Dance Movement Psychotherapy.

Katy Dymoke previously worked at New Bridge when it was Park Dean school taking after school dance groups. Katy, Amanda Parsons Hulse and Toni Charlesworth have all had a great time over the past 3 years of this grant and hope to continue.

On Friday we joined schools and colleges from across the UK in raising money for BBC’s ‘Children in Need’.

Staff and students were involved in a number of activities including:

  • ‘Sponsored Silence’, and ‘Sponsored give up your phone for a day’ (the latter was less popular!)
  • ‘Pudsey Bake Sale’  – thanks to Mrs Walters’ team and Sharon in the kitchen for producing some lovely cakes and biscuits which sold out on the day.

  • ‘Pudsey Treasure Hunt’ – thanks to Mr Blackman for guiding students around the Learning Centre to find spotty clues before eventually locating the treasure!
  • ‘Pin the Nose on Pudsey’ – thanks to Mrs Wilkinson for helping everyone at least hit the board and no, I didn’t get near!

I think the majority of Learning Centre staff and students joined in with the ‘Sponge a Staff’ event which took place in the courtyard! Thanks to Miss Kindon and Mr Fairest for taking most of the sponges with a smile!

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Can I just note that I also got a soaking for a good cause, however we may need to explain to the E-Base students that the idea is to throw the sponges rather than gentle washing faces!!

I look forward to letting you know the grand total within next week’s blog.

Spring Brook Lower School are supporting the Bone Cancer Research Trust’s Stamp Appeal and collecting used stamps at school (click here for more details about the campaign). Please could you send in any stamps you receive and we will make sure they are sent on to the charity. Thank you.

Just a reminder that the Learning Centre Parents’ Evening will be held on Tuesday from 4.00pm – 6.45pm, we’re looking forward to seeing you then.


Click here for this week’s news from Graham

You can find Gavin’s blog for the school site here

For news on our Key Stage 5 pathway groups at Medtia Square please click here

You can find my previous blog posts here


New Bridge College, Pennine House,
77 Union Street Oldham, OL1 1JZ

School Hours

M-F: 8am – 4pm
Weekends: Closed

Phone & Email

0161 518 7155