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Mar 24

A Visit From The Mayor – “Inspiration, aspiration and perspiration”


Mayor Marvin Rees


We were honoured to receive a visit from Bristol’s Mayor, Marvin Rees, on Friday 24th March. The Mayor met with a group of our young people from Years 10 and 11, including participants in our Going for Gold and Progress Plus programmes. He shared his own inspirational story and took questions from the audience on a wide range of issues that resonated with them, including: sport in Bristol; digital media and the creative industries; young people’s services and housing. He spoke of the need for young people to aim high and work hard and closed with these inspiring words from Theodore Roosevelt:


It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

The students were incredibly inspired by this visit and I would like to extend their and my thanks to the Mayor for taking the time to come and speak to us.

Mr Taylor


Apr 29

Former student visits Ikoba Secondary School in Uganda

For nearly two months I have been living and teaching at Ikoba Girl’s Secondary school. Aside from teaching the girls, each day consists of some sport, lots of singing and dancing and eating posho and beans; which I will come to later.

While I have been here I have been teaching English, ICT and sport. The English lessons have included lots of poetry and creative writing; once the girls feel free to be creative they can write some amazing poems. The most popular topicsarecows and Ikoba but my favourites always include the mention of me or my dog back home! The computer lessons are often the most rewarding because after teaching a class I will often find students working away to carry out the same task alone and they are always eager to learn more. When it comes to the sport lessons I am no expert but just taking them out means they all get involved. They love playing football and cricket but they are all very competitive no matter what the game! They are all really looking forward to the new playground which will be funded by money raised by Redcliffe in the 10 year celebrations because at the moment they play on uneven and rocky terrain.  




While I have been here I have seen just how much the partnership has helped everyone at this school.



Once lessons have finished at 4.40 the girls are free for a couple of hours. This is when we make mango juice, play chess or listen to my music and dance- many have learnt the Macarena and every word to ‘shake it off’ by Taylor Swift! The girls eat posho (maize flour mixed with water) and beans for most meals and I usually join them. They don’t complain about the food though because they are always so grateful for what they are given,especially when they get soda on a special occasion like Easter!

The girls work very hard every day; not only do they have to go to morning preps from 5 am and night preps from 7.30 until 10pm they have to carry out their domestic tasks. When I arrived I did not know how to properly wash my clothes by hand or collect water but each weekend without fail a small army is on hand to show me how it is done and they always make it look so easy- but it’s not! I also had to get used to bathing from a basin and the delights of a latrine, but then you soon realise that really it is nothing and although I would love to have a shower everyone here is so amazing that I would easily leave running water and constant electricity to be with them. One day it was discovered that there was no water left in the water tank that we usually collect water from so it was announced that there was a water crisis! We all had to walk for over 3km with our jerry cans to collect water, a distance some people usually have to walk, and although we walked back in the dark people did not complain.


 Washing and collecting water


While I have been here I have also been involved in a few celebrations with the school and they are always joyous and filled with lots of singing and dancing. The school had a thanksgiving celebration following their good results last year where the main celebrant was the bishop and there was cake for everyone! I joined some of the girls who took part in the Women’s Day march with lots of other girls from local schools, the police and the army. The most exciting celebration though was the celebration of the partnership. As well as lots of singing and traditional dancing students read out poems about the partnership and everything it has done for them as well as the love the partnership brings. doesn’t matter that there is no power for a while when you are surrounded by people who are filled with so much love and appreciation.



My time here has been amazing. There have been times when I look around and wonder why life here is still so hard- why do they not surface the roads when they say they will so that the crowded minibus I am in gets stuck in mud after the rain and makes it so hard for teachers to get to school each day? But then I realised that it doesn’t matter that there is no power for a while when you are surrounded by people who are filled with so much love and appreciation. While I have been here I have seen just how much the partnership has helped everyone at this school- from fixing dormitory roofs and buying stoves for the kitchen to a cow which the school sells milk from, the money that has been raised over the past 10 years has helped so much. But not only has the money helped there is a bond between the schools which is very special.


Isabelle Ward


Group photo


Isabelle is a former student of SMRT and visited Ikoba this year.




Tags: Ikoba
Jan 25

Character Education

The Church of England is responding to the national interest in character education at the moment.  Simon Stevens (Assistant Head) was involved in the working party which produced the report as part of this process. We both presented at the conference, which launched the report, and were privileged to be able to speak about the SMRT Alive programme and its impact. 

Alive is one of the case studies in the report (p18), which we reckon is well worth a read. The following video gives a flavour of the conference:



We were really impressed by the range of schools represented and by the lead Bishop on Education, Rt. Rev. Stephen Conway.


Elisabeth Gilpin


Tags: Faith
Sep 11

Exam results - excellent again!

We are really pleased with our students that they have worked hard and achieved such great results. We are particularly proud of those who have achieved against the odds.



We have secured a rise on last year's results of 3% with 73% of students getting five A*-C including English and Maths. An amazing third of the grades achieved were A* or A, with 60% of the grades being B or above. This is our best result in four years despite the bar being raised yet again! We are particularly pleased that many students have done so well in maths with 80% of students getting A*-C grades and 53% getting a B, A or A* grade!


I am delighted for our students that these great grades open the doors to further study in school, college or through apprenticeships. They have had a great attitude to their studies and made good use of all the extra revision sessions and support that generous staff have put on for them, it is a real team effort of students, parents, teachers and support staff and we are really proud of everyone's contribution.



We are delighted with the A level results this year at St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School. The A level pass rate is 99.3% with 64% of grades being B and above.  This equals our best ever set of results






Students have followed their passions and studied a wide range of subjects with us. The courses they are going on to at university are as varied as Medieval and Modern Languages at Cambridge, Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Manchester, medicine at Cardiff, Physics at Southampton and Animal Behaviour at Plymouth. We also have two students with places at prestigious American universities, one of them following in Hilary Clinton’s footsteps. What has impressed us is how well students have researched their options and really thought about what they want to study at university or what they want to do when they leave school. They have shown a maturity, thoughtfulness and intelligence in their decision making that reflects them taking full responsibility for their futures. I am inspired by the way our students have made the most of all the learning opportunities on offer to them and by the way the staff have supported them through any difficulties. 

exam results


Kyiah and Nell


The wonderful results are a credit to the hardworking students, the inspirational teachers, caring support staff and nervous parents! For many of the students at Redcliffe sixth form we are building on GCSE results the students achieved in other schools. I am proud of our whole school community and the wider Bristol educational community. Our young people have really made us proud!


Mrs Gilpin




Jul 10

Charity thanks SMRT for fundrasing

The Canynges house charity this year was the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation. The charity have put together a special video to thank pupils and staff at your school for their support.


It really is massively appreciated, and I hope the video will help highlight how far the money raised will go.Emma Newnes, Roy Castle Lung Foundation





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