Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Weekly Update : 18th January 2023

Votes For Schools  

This week our students will be discussing the Prime Minister's thoughts regarding the introduction of compulsory maths study up to the age of 18.

There has been a divide between those supporting this idea and those against. This happens with many new policies. ​Students may hear accusations of back tracking, U-turns and climb downs in the news. There are lots of ways of saying politicians have changed their mind!​

This week's Vote Topic is "Is it okay for the Government to change its mind?' and we are looking forward to some healthy political discussion.



Have a look at the lesson – how would you vote?

PSHE at Kettering Buccleuch Academy

At KBA students are taught PSHE/RSHE through 2 platforms – Votes For Schools and Life lessons.

Some aspects of our PSHE/RSHE/SMSC programme of study incorporate challenging topics, and we make no apologies in ensuring these are delivered to all our students in a safe learning environment. This is so students can ask questions, learn about common misconceptions and prejudices, and be able to make their own informed decisions and choices, after being presented with the full facts.

If you would like further information, please visit the PSHE page on our website - https://kba.uk/secondary/curriculum/smsc-pshe

Please take the time to discuss with your child/children what they have learnt this week 

Some ideas for prompt questions may include:

  • Tell me one thing that you learnt in your PSHE lesson that you didn’t know before the lesson?
  • What did you find interesting about your PSHE lesson?
  • How did you feel about your PSHE lesson today?

Life lessons

This week in our Life lessons time slot the focus will be on careers which is being led by Mr Fraher.

The Rise of Internet Mysogyny

We know that parents and carers will share our concerns about the current media attention surrounding Andrew Tate and the potential effect that this can have on our young people.

For those of you who may merely dismiss Tate as someone who can just be ignored we need to put his influence into context. In July 2022 there were more Google searches for Tate, who was raised on a Luton council estate, than for Donald Trump or Kim Kardashian. Before he was banned from TikTok (he is also excluded from Facebook, YouTube and Instagram) his videos had racked up over 11 billion views.

In order to help parents and carers navigate through this difficult topic we are providing the following advice and guidance.

Watch what they’re watching

Before you address the problem, you must grasp the nettle by going online to see exactly what your kids see. It’s likely to be a shock but that’s kind of the point.

 “The key thing to do is treat the online world as you would do any world your children inhabit,” says Charlotte Aynsley, a safeguarding expert with a focus on keeping children safe online. “Parents have a responsibility to engage with the environment and understand it better. You need to risk assess it like you would a swimming pool. We need to deploy that logic in the online context.”

Give your children a social media toolkit

It might seem obvious but it bears repeating, especially to children: social media makes it easier to say offensive things because you can be anonymous. But that doesn’t mean it’s harmless or acceptable.

Gemma Campbell, counsellor and clinical content specialist at Kooth, one of the UK’s leading provider of NHS-commissioned personalised digital mental health support, advises that “when determining whether content may be misogynistic, think about whether you could say this to a girl or women you respect in person.” She also has a little social media toolkit of questions for children to keep in mind when using social media: “How does this content make me feel? How does this content affect those I care about? Is there a counter argument, or challenge to what I’ve just viewed?”

Lean on movies, books and apps

There are so many resources available that offer either the flipside to Tate’s ideology or lift the bonnet on the workings of social media. The best example of the latter is Netflix’s The Social Dilemma which should be essential viewing for teenagers. 

Then there are apps such as luna which is dedicated to teen health and wellbeing – and is an antidote to unregulated content creators, powerful algorithms and the spread of inaccurate information. “We’ve built luna so that teenagers can feel supported throughout adolescence and know that whatever they read or watch on luna is accurate and made with their best interests in mind,” explains co-founder Jas Schembri.

For younger children it’s important to expose them to story books that have strong, intelligent female protagonists (Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty is brilliant) or showing male characters who are gentle (The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf is a classic example). Teenagers would do well to read The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf, as well as Men Who Hate Women by Laura Bates. Parents should be prepared to discuss books, TV shows, podcasts, films or any online content that explores misogyny with their children.

Listen and ask questions

Be prepared to listen, even if all you want to do is lecture. Ask your children what they know about Tate. If they like him, ask them why. Ask them how he makes them feel. When they respond, try to suspend judgement – interrupting or scoffing is a non-starter. 

This is a view shared by actor Angus Castle-Doughty, who plays a misogynist incel in Hollyoaks and who prepared for the role by undertaking extensive research into the dark world his character inhabits. 

He has been particularly struck by how online misogynists make boys feel seen and heard. “Some boys feel they are being heard for the first time,” he says. “The biggest take-aways from my storyline are [to think about] the way we talk to boys and how lonely some boys are. The first thing to do is listen to them, rather than talk at them. Then you’ll get to the emotion behind the thing they are saying. Otherwise you are going ‘what you’ve said is bad and here’s why’ and it doesn’t change anything because [your son] will still feel scared and alone.”

Show your kids how to block content

Enabling your kids to take control of the types of content they’re seeing as well as general education about how to be safe online can help them to see that social media is a place to both be wary of and enjoy. Show them how to block or report misogynistic (or generally hateful) content on the various social media platforms.

Don’t give up

However difficult it is, however awkward you find it or however angry it makes you - the most important thing is to talk about it. Andrew Tate and all he represents is too dangerous to stay silent on.

Ask for Help

If you are facing problems with your child in relation to this topic please contact  Mr Henton (Senior Vice Principal and Designated Safeguarding Lead). He will be happy to signpost you to other resources and support.

Student school council

At KBA we have an active student council who would like to hear your thoughts and opinions – they have placed a feedback box at main receptions for any comments you wish to make.

Year 9 Options

Year 9 Students will begin to have assemblies about their GCSE Options on Monday 23rd January. These assemblies will take place all week in the Theatre. 

These will be available for parents to view online following Options Evening on Thursday 23rd February.

Bookbuzz

Bookbuzz is a reading programme that aims to inspire a love of reading for 11- to 13-year-olds. 

All of the Bookbuzz books have been carefully selected by experts to ensure quality, suitability and to encourage reading for pleasure. 

Here at KBA, we are passionate about reading for pleasure and understand the immeasurable benefits that are achieved from regular reading, so we were very excited to take part. 

Just before Christmas, students in year 7 and 8 were able to select a book from a choice of 17, which KBA pledged to gift to them in the new year. 

Students will receive their chosen book which they can read at home or at school or both! 

Lastly, the books that the students have selected all have an AR quiz linked to them, so once students have finished reading them, they can also complete the quiz and move closer to achieving their termly reading target.