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All Year 8 students at The Avon Valley School and Performing Arts College are currently involved in an innovative scheme called ‘The Edge’ which aims to develop and embed valuable life skills. This is a project that students can engage with even when self-isolating.

‘The Edge’ offered by PiXL, the largest network which supports schools in England and Wales, accredits important life skills and attributes such as – leadership, organisation, initiative, resilience and communication.  The initiative gives students a qualification, which runs alongside their academic lessons and recognises what they can do, not just what they know.

In order to gain the recognised qualification at “Apprentice”, “Graduate” or “Masters” level, students need to complete a range of activities from an approved list.  The activities are varied and can be undertaken in normal lessons, in extra-curricular clubs or outside of school. Activities range from mentoring a peer and being an ambassador for the school to captaining a sports team or learning a new instrument or language.

During the summer lockdown, and whilst in self-isolation, year 8 students at The Avon Valley School have been encouraged to practice and their develop skills. For example, the school’s PE department challenged students to plan, practice and lead a warm up with members of their family. In addition, the year 8 students were also asked to create a poster or fact sheet describing a chosen career option, and they were encouraged to design, prepare and cook a family meal.

Progress through the scheme is managed by students themselves using a specially designed website, with school staff and the school’s ‘Edge Coordinator’ providing an oversight and awarding credits towards achieving the qualifications.

Apollo House student, William Smith has made excellent progress with the award and has signed off a number of challenges including writing a film review, cooking his family a meal, leading an exercise style warm up and designing a wonderful careers poster. Another student, who’s making excellent progress with the award is, Logan Cooper who belongs to Fortune House. Logan filmed a Joe Wicks style warm up video, during which he lead his dad and sister through the cardio and muscular exercises.

Leigh Hallam, PE Teacher and Edge Coordinator, said: “Lockdown and self-isolation has not hampered the progress made by some students on the PiXL Edge programme. Many of the students have been innovative and have found creative ways to engage with, and demonstrate the skills needed for the award. I am really pleased with the progress made, and hope that many of the students will successfully complete the award.”

Alison Davies, Headteacher commented “The personal skills developed by our students through ‘The Edge’ very important, and help our students to develop resilience – a skills that has become very important during 2020.”

For further information, or to arrange a photo opportunity please contact Fiona Perks, Headteacher’s PA on 01788 542355 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  


Two students from The Avon Valley School and Performing Arts College have recently appeared on award winning Netflix TV show The Crown.

Year 11, Apollo House, twin brothers Evan and Brandon Whitt attended auditions in London, and were selected despite being up against many other budding actors, to play Timothy and Nicholas Knatchbull who featured on screen in episode 1 of the new season of the hit show, which premiered on Sunday 15 November.

In the scenes, set in Sligo, Ireland, Brandon and Evan played Timothy and Nicholas the grandchildren of the Queen's cousin Lord Louis Mountbatten who has been portrayed in a number of episodes by veteran actor Charles Dance. The twins’ scenes mirror real life events and end in tragedy as the fishing boat they are travelling on is the target of an IRA bomb attack in which Lord Mountbatten was assassinated. The attack, which took place in 1979, left Nicholas Knatchbull, along with local boy Paul Maxwell and the Dowager Lady Brabourne, all dead.

During the week long filming process, which took place in Scotland, Evan and Brandon spent time rehearsing, learning their lines and shooting their scenes multiple times to capture the perfect take. The boys also had chance, when not filming, to spend time with the other actors cast in their scenes, Brandon also met Olivia Colman, who plays Queen Elizabeth II in season 3 and 4 of the award winning show, as he filmed a number of additional scenes.

Alison Davies, Headteacher, said, “This is has been a wonderful achievement for Evan and Brandon, who are both keen actors, and were attracted to our school because of our performing arts status. We’ve known about their appearance in The Crown for some time, but have had to keep it under wraps until it premiered this month. Both boys are currently studying hard for their upcoming exams whilst keeping their eyes open for further acting opportunities.”

For further information, or to arrange a photo opportunity please contact Fiona Perks, Headteacher’s PA on 01788 542355 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  


A group of students and staff from The Avon Valley School and Performing Arts College have worked together to produce the school’s very first podcast which is now available to all members of the school community.  

The debut podcast episode was recorded, and produced, by members of the school’s wellbeing council and features twelve students from, a range of year groups, along with six members of staff. The podcast which has an anti-bullying message was released as part the UK’s anti-bullying week

In the episode the students and staff discuss their own experiences, the impact bullying can have and the importance of being kind. Those listening to the podcast can also hear about the services and support available in school for those who have experienced bullying.

All the students involved in the project have been awarded leadership points and the podcast has been uploaded to the school’s YouTube channel for people to listen to. So far the podcast episode has been listened to over 300 times.

Erin Anderson-Howe, the member of staff behind the project, said “Events this year have left many young people feeling isolated and the podcast is a way for people to connect. Unfortunately, due to covid restrictions and social distancing, we cannot hold traditional assemblies and the wellbeing council decided that a podcast would be a good way to share the anti-bullying message. As a group we had several obstacles to overcome as those involved couldn’t work directly with each other. Each person, therefore, had to record their section independently before it was edited together, this did mean that those self-isolating could still be involved.”

Alison Davies, Headteacher, said, “I was delighted to listen to our school’s first ever podcast, and I was really impressed with everyone involved. This was a very creative way to use technology to bring people together and everyone involved in the project have every right to be proud of themselves.”

To listen to the podcast visit: https://youtu.be/8_m-8ah58AA

For further information, or to arrange a photo opportunity please contact Fiona Perks, Headteacher’s PA on 01788 542355 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  


The generous students at The Avon Valley School and Performing Arts College have donated many hundreds of food items as part of an appeal to support Rugby Food Bank.

The food bank based on Newbold Road opened in 2012 and is part of The Trussell Trust’s network of food banks. The Trust supports more than 1,200 food banks in the UK, which provide a minimum of three days’ nutritionally balanced emergency food to people who have been referred in their time of need. Between April 2019 and March 2020, food banks in the trust’s network provided a record 1.9 million food supplies to people in crisis, an increase on the previous year.

Prior to the appeal’s launch students at the school watched a video assembly delivered by Rugby Youth for Christ. The video explained what the food bank does, how it supports people in the local area and which items acceptable as donations. During a two-week long collection students brought in hundreds, if not thousands, of items range from cream cracker and biscuits to rice and long life milk.

Many students made donations, with a number of Year 8 students going the extra mile to support people in need. Apollo House’s Amelia Ray-Chaudhuri and George Docker brought in many carrier bags containing food. In addition, Fortune House’s, Lili Oliver brought in several hundred items after receiving support from colleagues at her mum’s workplace, Lili also used her pocket money to buy selection boxes which will be distributed by the food bank over the festive period.

Alison Davies, Headteacher, commented, “Our students always show their generous nature, and have excelled themselves this year. We launched our food collection to keep a sense of normality, during what has been a difficult year. Due to the restrictions, and the impact of coronavirus, we were not expecting to collect as much food as in previous years. However, our students have outdone themselves and we have collected an extraordinary amount of food. We are delighted to hand this food over, knowing it will support local people in their time of need.”

For further information, or to arrange a photo opportunity please contact Fiona Perks, Headteacher’s PA on 01788 542355 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  


The students at The Avon Valley School and Performing Arts College have written hundreds of letters that will be sent to residents of local care homes to open during the festival season.

Students in Year 7 and Year 8 have spent a number of lessons drafting and writing letters in class, whilst other students have been encouraged to pen their own letters via Google Classroom. Some students, who are currently self-isolating, have written their letter at home and emailed it to their teacher for printing at school.

In the letters the school’s students have introduced themselves and shared information about their hobbies, interests, and ambitions for the future. They have also discussed events of the year and have wished the letter’s recipient a cheerful and happy Christmas.

After the students had written, and submitted their letter, the letters were quarantined in the school before being delivered to local care homes where they will be opened by residents aged 50 – 100.

Erin Anderson-Howe, who leads the school’s well-being council, said, “This project is part of December’s theme which is ‘The Gift of Giving’ and I am delighted with the number of letters our students have produced. At the last count we had 223 letters, with a few more yet to be added. I hope everyone who contributed, by writing a letter, is very proud. Some of the residents may not be able to see members of their family due to being in a high risk category, and we hope our letter will make them smile.”

Alison Davies, Headteacher, said, “It is wonderful to see that our students have produce so many letter, I am sure these will be greatly appreciated by the residents who receive them. There is no doubt that this year has been difficult, for people of all ages, and I hope the lovely letters written by our students will help to spread some Christmas cheer.”

For further information, or to arrange a photo opportunity please contact Fiona Perks, Headteacher’s PA on 01788 542355 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  


Many students at The Avon Valley School and Performing Arts College recently took part in a competition for Maths Week England 2020 organised by online maths platform TT Rockstars.   

In the competition, which is open to schools across the country, participants earn points by answering multiplication or division questions correctly. The aim is to answer as many questions correctly, in the fastest time, as possible. At the end of the competition there are prizes to be won nationally and the top three students in each school are awarded a certificate.

At The Avon Valley School, Year 10 student, Lisa Rosewall, and Year 7 students Joseph von Wager and Rohan Hoque were the school’s best competitors and were each presented with a certificate in recognition of their success.

Fortune House student, Lisa the highest scoring Key Stage 4 students, gained 33,020 points, Rohan scored 38,504 points and Joseph the school’s highest achiever amassed 56,556 points.

In addition to their official TT Rockstars certificates the students were also nominated for a Headteacher’s Award to celebrate their success.

Alison Davies, Headteacher, said, “It was excellent to hear about our students involvement in this competition and it was lovely to see that many students, from across our year groups, had opportunity to participate. I want to congratulate Joseph, Rohan, and Lisa for the effort and for the high scores they’ve achieved.”

For further information, or to arrange a photo opportunity please contact Fiona Perks, Headteacher’s PA on 01788 542355 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  


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