Principal's Blog - April 2018

We have started the summer term with huge optimism and a great deal to look forward to. I always love returning after the spring break as I have found, over the years, that students generally appreciate how well they are consolidating all they have learned over the past two terms. I am enormously impressed by the continued maturity of UTC Portsmouth students and how determined they are in their desire to make a meaningful difference to their lives.

Student progress update

Sixth form students began two weeks of mock examinations on the first day of the summer term. We all send the Year 12 students our best wishes and I am grateful for the continued hard work of my staff in preparing students for this first realistic experience.

They are getting very close to the halfway mark of their studies as it will be in about a year’s time full, external exams will be sat. Based on regular assessment, we get a strong sense from this cohort that they will leave us to go on to be successful in all kinds of STEM careers. Also, by this time next year, these students will have applied for university, apprenticeships or employment.

Our Year 10 students performed very well in their mock examinations too, held before the spring break. It is so rewarding to see these students already actively considering what courses they would like to follow at sixth form.

Department for Education (DfE) visit

The DfE visit every newly opened college or school every term in its first two years. We had a second visit from the DfE last month and I am delighted to report it went very well again. UTC Portsmouth is certainly heading in the right direction.

Royal visit

We are very pleased to welcome HRH Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex on 26th April. UTC Portsmouth is hosting a regional Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme event and many local schools will be in attendance.

The Earl of Wessex has recently assumed many duties from his father, the Duke of Edinburgh, and we look forward to meeting HRH.

Progression week

As mentioned in my March blog, we are excited about holding our first ‘Progression Week’ commencing 30th April. Preparations are really coming together and I am optimistic that students will get a great understanding of the skills and tools they will need to be truly equipped for life beyond college.

Student voice

We recently filled our remaining student leadership positions, namely the presidents of our four college Institutes. Congratulations to Warren S, Angus G, Michael A, Justin A  in gaining Institute President positions. The activities and organisation of the institutes will also be ably assisted by Charle W and Declan O. Our students came up with some great names for the Institutes and we finally decided on the following popular choices of: Centauri, Sirius, Rigel and Polaris.

Coming very soon!

We are proud to announce that the Lego Education Innovation Studio is coming to UTC Portsmouth very soon. This will be a permanent facility for young people of all ages in the community to enjoy. Other schools are already booking up sessions. In short, the studio is a high quality resource and is a carefully thought-out solution to a long-standing gap in STEM provision for both primary and secondary education (4-18).

Ciaran O’Dowda



Other important dates for the summer term:

Week beginning 16th April: Year 12 Mock exams fortnight

9th May from 5:30pm Parents Information Evening for Y10 students starting Sept 2018

23rd and 25th May: CAMNAT exams all week

Year 10 reports issued just before the half term break

Friday 25th May:  INSET Day (college only open to Y10 students doing their CAMNAT exams in the afternoon)

Half term: 28th May to 1st June

Monday 4th June: Work Experience week for Year 10

5th July- Transition Day for Y10 students starting in Sept 2018

Sports Day: date to be confirmed

Monday 16th July: Work Experience week for Year 12

Friday 20th July: summer term ends