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All the latest News from Ely College

December 2020

  • Festival of Arts Celebration!

    Published 15/12/20

    Did you see our Festival of Arts Celebration?!? Don't miss it, follow the link here: Go to this sway!

    We are so excited to finally share this with you all. As well as our Winter Wonderland winners, we're showcasing all of our festive arts! With our Year 'Bubble' choirs & fabulous performances... students said 'the show must go on'! While we can't come together for our usual Winter Showcase, it is so beautiful to share such warmth & positivity with you all at this festive time of the year.

    REMEMBER: Friday (18th) is the end of term and it is Non School Uniform Day.

    Regardless of donations we want ALL students to join in (festive jumpers optional), but IF YOU CAN take 5 mins to donate VIA WisePay our House Charities will see the benefits.

    No cash donations will be taken in on the day.

    Our Winter Wonderland inter-house competition has been going for a number of years now, but we've never had so many AND such high quality entries before! Over 500 students took part, earning their #PLEDGES & showcasing their talent. Here are the winners with their stunning pieces!

    From this competition there was an overall winner chosen and a winner from each of the Houses. 6 designs were also chosen to be produced as the official Ely College Christmas cards. Over 50 other entries were awarded “Highly commendable” certificates as the standards were so high making choosing winners very difficult.




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  • Latest Ely College Podcast

    Published 15/12/20

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  • Message from CMAT cEO: Ban the Beard VS save Santa

    Published 08/12/20

    Mark Woods, CMAT’s CEO, has been growing his own feral Lockdown beard since 20th March 2020; no shaving, no trimming, no fancy manscaping – just the real deal as it comes.

    Initially Mark swore he would not touch his beard until all students were back in school full-time, however, seeing what a natural beauty the said beard has blossomed into, he thought he would give you the choice as to what he does next.

    Two campaigns were set-up:

    1) Shave (also known as ‘Ban the Beard’): Mark will give his beard a good trim or remove it completely (to the relief of his family!) and at least return to looking as near respectable as he has ever managed.

    2) Leave (also known as ‘Santa’): Mark pledges to turn into CMAT’s (or other associated organisations) very own Santa Claus: no shaving until the school breaks up for Christmas, a full white dye-job and some Covid-safe ‘hohohoing’.

    The deadline for making your decision was the 30th September. Some terrified staff, parents and friends voiced their concerns about Mark’s lack of grooming and pushed the ‘Ban the Beard’ campaign. Alas, and unfortunately for some, the idea of Santa Claus seemed to be the frontrunner, raising over £1,000 for Sue Ryder, Thorpe Hall Hospice.

    Although the initial conditions were that, unless the £5,000 target was hit, Mark would decide on the outcome of his increasingly feral beard, however, Mark and his co-organisers have since decided that he will keep his beard anyway (and much to the annoyance of his family!).

    Mark and the team would like to thank everyone for their generous donations in support of such a superb cause as Sue Ryder, a charity with a special place in the hearts of all those at CMAT and their associates’ hearts.

    Please continue with your generous donations! All monies raised will support the outstanding work of Sue Ryder, Thorpe Hall Hospice in memory of our dear friend Martin Bacon, who benefited from their care and who always enjoyed a silly plan.

    Mark had this this say as the term ended: "As a parent and a trust CEO, I have often been, I imagine, part of a relatively small group of people who have seen this pandemic from both sides. I have been party to the careful, lengthy deliberations of leadership staff about running track and trace within schools and in attempting to find the fine balance between keeping the school open and the children in school, whilst also trying to ensure that transmission is prevented. Staff are regularly having to make difficult decisions about symptoms, tests and self-isolation, whilst also recognising the stresses and strains placed on colleagues. In addition to contacting parents to explain difficult decisions and exploring contacts beyond seating plans, parents are receiving test information outside of school hours with schools responding, putting plans into action and then sharing it with families. School leaders have to go through this routine time and again. And then, from the parents’ perspective, receiving a phone call or letter from the school which impacts upon their own family life and responsibilities. We are also very acutely aware of the strain that has been placed on so many families for a whole variety of reasons.

    And all this before we even start to consider the impact on teaching and learning and the expectation to manage students in school and at home within a constantly changing set of circumstances.  

    This has been an extraordinary drain on staff in schools and all students within schools. All I will say, is ‘Thank you’ to the staff for all of their commitment, resilience and hard work. And ‘Thank you’ for your ongoing support and patience through this period. I sincerely hope that by the time we reach our next newsletter in the Spring, we will all be feeling that we are starting to make real strides forward in our recovery.

    The normal work of trust does carry on, and we want to celebrate the fact that Northstowe Secondary School finally became a full part of the CMAT family in Sept and the Bluecoat School Stamford, should join the trust on 1st January. Our work with The Harbour School and the Greater Peterborough University Technical College is ongoing."

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  • Jake's pink hair kicks off a month of giving PLEDGES - Get your foodbank donations in now!

    Published 01/12/20

    Well done to Jake who has raised an amazing £553 for Maggie's Cambridge!

    Now then... YES it is true that Jake is a loyal member of Scott House... and YES Maggie's is the Turing House charity so you might have heard about how important they are to us as a cancer support charity.... BUT this was an independent fundraising effort from Jake. He did it for his Nan and like us, his Nan would be so proud!

    With permission from the Principal and his Air Cadets CO, he got people to sponsor him to dye his hair PINK. It will wash out before he starts back at cadets in the new year but for now a HUGE WELL DONE to Jake for smashing his £100 target and kicking off our month of #giving! #PLEDGES #charities


    Here's a reminder of what we have planned for December:

    Taken from the weekly Bulletin newsletter: College charity work between now and the end of term

    Normally we would be gearing up for one of the highlights of the school year, the Christmas Charity Fair. However, due to the nature of the restrictions we now find ourselves under we are unable to run it in a similar way as we have previously. We do still want to continue our charitable work as far as possible and so are planning two activities before the end of term.

    Collection of food for local Foodbanks. Many people have struggled during the pandemic and the importance of foodbanks to our communities has never been more important. To this end we ask that if you are able to please donate items to the collection we are making. If students can simply bring in any items and leave in their year office we will do the rest. Although any items are appreciated there is a particular need for hamper based items, Fray Bentos pies, cereals, chunky soups and tinned rice pudding. Please don’t send in any items that are perishable as we can’t use them. The deadline for this is Friday 11th December and the collection opens on Monday 30th November.

    Non uniform day, Friday 18th December. On the last day of term we will be having a non-uniform day in college. Any monies raised from this will be split equally between the 4 House charities. These charities are:

    Etheldreda - Spectrum Cambridge

    Franklin - C9 Teenage Cancer Trust Ward at Addenbrookes

    Scott - Arthur Rank Hospice

    Turing - Maggie's Cambridge

    More information about these charities will be found in next week’s bulletin. Obviously at the moment we cannot accept cash so donations need to be made on Wisepay. If you log into your account as normal, look for "Shop" and you will find an option called ‘Non uniform day charity donation Friday 18th December’. This will go live on Monday 30th November. We ask that if you are able make a donation of £1 or more to support our local charities then that would be amazing. The day is a normal non uniform day and not a ‘Christmas Jumper’ day however it would be lovely to see as many students as possible in festive colours and attire (including festive jumpers if available). As we also want this to be a school community event all students can come dressed in non-uniform regardless if a donation has been made or not. Standard school advice on appropriate attire for non-uniform days is still in effect.

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  • Thank you all for making Gratitude Week such a success!

    Published 01/12/20

    Last week was Gratitude Week at Ely College and Bishop Laney!

    It has been a difficult year for everyone and in an effort to lift spirits and promote positivity in college, we thought it would be a lovely idea for us all to say THANK YOU more often and recognise the support we each receive day to day.

    Little thank you cards were filled in by all staff and students and as you can see, we now have a huge box of gratitude to share (all covid safe and quarantined)! Thank you for taking part and making Gratitude Week such a success.


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  • Christmas Menu Announced - 9th Dec

    Published 01/12/20

    Our catering partners have shared their Christmas menu with us. No need to book in advance, but we do recommend checking you have your WisePay catering account topped up for those extra little festive treats!

    Our festive feast is always a lovely day in college, as everyone enjoys good food and good company in the run up to the end of term. See you all on the 9th December! 


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