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Year 6 Transition

A Message From Rob Herbert, Assistant Principal

In my role as Assistant Principal, I will ensure that everything is done to provide students with the very best start to life at Birchwood. I believe the key to an effective transition is putting students' minds at rest and helping to allay their common fears of getting lost, being bullied, and getting too much home learning! 

I want the children to experience the excitement they are entitled to: making new friends, taking new subjects, and exploring all the wonderful opportunities that we have to offer. I wish for those joining us each September to take their next steps in education with confidence and reassurance. I understand how important it is for our staff to build positive relationships with the students and this begins on that very first induction day. The journey is a different one for every student, and we will always do our very best to cater to every individual need. 

The Transition Timetable 
  • Primary school visits: 3 June – 14 June   

  • Induction Day: 11 July  

  • Parent Information Evening (including Meet the Tutor, Faculty Fair and uniform suppliers): 11 July    

  • Summer School: 14 August & 15 August – If you would like your child to attend, please contact 

  • Induction Day 2: 3 September  

Primary School Visits

The transition for our newly inducted Year 7 cohort is both detailed and effective. The process starts with a thorough and informative primary school visit to every single feeder school, both locally and further afield, regardless of the number coming to us in September. The emphasis on meeting every child and their teacher is because the information we glean is so valuable. Learning of the student’s previous experience in education and their current circumstances helps to inform the process of dividing the year group into form groups. Finding the right blend of personalities in each group helps to maximise student chances of success, sense of belonging and enjoyment of school. 

Induction Day One

Induction Day One is the next important date in the diary. All the students who come to us enjoy an engaging day of activities that are designed to help the students mix and get to know each other and the school site. Following the events of the day comes the Parent Information Evening. At this event, parents/carers and students attend to listen to a presentation from the Principal and Head Of Year and attend a Faculty Fair, where every subject will be represented to provide families with information about what to expect in Year 7. Another bonus of the evening is that there is normally the chance to meet the students' Form Tutor for the first time and make those valuable first introductions. Finally, there will be uniform supplies in attendance and parents/carers can purchase what the students will need for September. 

Summer School

Following this, comes a Summer School in August. Historically, at least 200 pupils out of a cohort of 240 attend and the students enjoy 2 days onsite doing brilliantly planned sessions with teachers and afternoons with Club Excel, who provide inflatables and different activities and challenges. The idea is to promote student friendships, lower inhibitions and remove some of those big fears children have when moving from primary to secondary school.  

Induction Day Two

Come the start of September, the next aspect of the process is Induction Day Two. This is generally a good experience for the students because, like the Summer School, the children receive the freedom of the Birchwood site before the rest of the school returns the next day. By this stage, the students have a good idea of what to expect and are well on the way to feeling both settled and excited about starting lessons.  

Following this, the transition is about students getting into a routine, and we utilise Sixth formers and LSA’s to help guide students to where they need to go. The Settling Evening soon arrives, and this is a chance for families to meet and celebrate some of the successes the students will have undoubtedly had since the process from primary school began. 

Transition Review

Finally, we aim to run the last phase of our transition post-Christmas to ensure students are on track and are happy. This generally involves form tutors and the HoY meeting with students to touch base one-to-one and review their first term.  

A Message From Ross Edwards, Head Of Year 7

Welcome to Birchwood High School. I am really looking forward to meeting you all during the forthcoming transition process. This process will give me an opportunity to get to know you and answer any questions you may have. Although I am sure you will be feeling both nervous and excited, we are extremely proud of our friendly culture here at Birchwood. I know that the older students and staff are looking forward to welcoming you and doing everything possible to help you settle in. 

My top tip for being a successful Birchwood student is to buy into the values of respect, inclusivity and kindness. Make the most of every opportunity that comes your way, including joining some of the many extra-curricular activities on offer.

 Please see copies of all the information included in your child's Year 6 Welcome Packs below: