Category Archives: News Spring 2016

Rhodri Speaks Out Again!

Rhodri Poacher in year 13 must be getting used to the limelight now.  This week he was invited to the Welsh Government Conference to talk about his Duje of Edinburgh’s Award experience.

Stephanie Price, the DofE Director for Wales sent us this glowing report.

He did a fantastic job and was a great ambassador for the DofE. The Welsh Government conference was attended by around 100 youth work professionals including representatives from all across Wales. There were keynote speeches from The Deputy Minister for Technology and Skills , Julie James AM, Sally Holland The Children’s Commissioner for Wales and Professor Graham Donaldson , the author of the new Curriculum for Schools in Wales.

Rhodri was joined by Tilly Hall, a Gold Award holder from the Vale of Glamorgan, on a young person’s panel. He addressed the whole conference talking about his DofE experiences and responded to a range of questions from the audience. Rhodri gave a very mature performance and spoke very honestly and passionately.

As is often the case at these events the young peoples’ input was the highlight of the day!

Thank you for allowing him to attend it was a pleasure to have him as part of the DofE Wales team.

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Year 10 Super Scientists

Year 10 More Able and Talented scientists have been taking part in a Science Quiz against other schools this year. One team— comprising Emily Prewett, Caitlin Langstone, Ieuan Davies and Megan Rees—have not only made it through to the quarter final but were also the top scoring team overall in the preliminary round!

Their next event is against St. lltyd’s School in Cardiff on 22nd June.

Rhodri goes for Gold – DofE News

Congratulations to our 6th form students who recently received their Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards.

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Year 12 students Hannah Mealey, Frankie Hopkins, Elysia Humphreys, Caitlin Jones, Menna Ward and Jess Windsor-Hamilton all received their Silver Awards.

Duke of Edinburgh Awards-20

Star of the show was year 13 student Rhodri Poacher who not only became one the youngest people to receive the prestigious Gold award but also compered the whole event.  Rhodri was lucky enough to spend part of past summer in Borneo. This formed part of his DofE Gold Award which Rhodri spoke about at the ceremony.


Y Pant v Hawthorn

It was the first game on the new 3G for the Y Pant’s year 7 football team and a chance to progress further into the RCT Cup.

The conditions were perfect for Y-Pant’s quick passing game, with lots of rain making the ball slip along the surface quickly.  

Y Pant started very quickly with Chris finishing off a through ball from Iestyn P.  and then grabbing another minutes later. The back four for Y Pant looked calm on the ball and dealt with Hawthorn’s attempts to counter attack. When one of these attacks finally broke through Owen Jones, who had little to do all game made a superb one on one stop.  Lewis C grabbed the 3rd before Matthew Tozer bulldozed his way through Hawthorn defence, with a few step overs before calmly rounding the keeper and slotting the ball away. The final goal was added by Chris S, who’d just come back on the field. A brilliant corner swung in was met by a fantastic header that looped into the left corner. That was a hat-rick for Chirs and 5-0 to Y Pant.

A solid back four, hard working midfield and dynamic front two made calling Man of the match a very tough decision, as all members of the squad played a key part in the victory. However MOTM goes to Iestyn Phillips for a very mature performance in midfield. Not only going forward and playing key through balls but in tracking back and helping the back four to ensure we kept our clean sheet.

Overall then a pleasing first game from the team, the work ethic and determination to win suggests a promising future ahead. Congratulations Year 7.



Year 10 & Year 11 Aspiring to the Top Universities

Last week, a number of students in year 10 and 11 attended a conference in the St. David’s Hotel organised by PiXL.  Daniel Schoen in year 11 has written this review of the event.

‘Getting into the top universities’ was the main aim of the conference that I, along with a group of Year 10 and 11 students, attended on February 29th.  Establishments such as Oxford, Cambridge and King’s College appeared to me as places that were unreachable; only accessible to the social elite. Coming from a comprehensive school nestled in the country borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, even the idea of crossing the Severn Bridge to attend university seemed daunting. When I was notified about the opportunity of attending the event, I passed it off. I possessed several misconceptions about these reported ‘Russell Group Universities’, and never felt that I had an iota of chance when it came to applying for one of them.

After a short bus ride to the capital, we approached Saint David’s Hotel in all its splendour. After being presented with booklets to further enforce the information given, we were ushered into a conference room in the ‘Roald Dahl Suite’; overlooking the shimmering waters of Cardiff Bay. Our welcome was a warm one, we were invited to light refreshments before other schools arrived and the conference was upon us. As expected, many public schools arrived at the conference. It was certainly a proud moment for Y Pant, being one of the few state schools in attendance, and having a sizable group of pupils at the conference. Peter Rawling- the proclaimed Russell Group University ‘guru’- took the role as the admissions lecturer, he outlined the purpose of the conferences along with using his wealth of knowledge and experience to provide us with inspiration and advice for applying for the top universities. He then introduced us to a guest speaker, Ian McConnachie; a former student from the University of Oxford. As a former student, he was able to provide us with accounts that were engaging and was quick to dispel the notion that top universities like Oxford were reserved only for the wealthy and the upper class. He shed light upon his personal experiences while studying Maths at Oxford and also outlined information regarding Cambridge. Unfortunately, the second guest speaker was unable to attend; determined not to let these unforeseen circumstances overturn this event, Rawling spoke about competitions for applications for university and the courses available to study. He inspired us to create a portfolio in order to record our achievements and perform extra reading around subjects we were interested in, known ‘Super-Curricular activities’. It was said that these would enhance and reinforce our love for the subjects we were interested in.

Overall, despite the fact that it was slightly overwhelming at first, the conference really made me aware of the options available to me after KS5. It has inspired me to further research topics that interest me and has improved my self-esteem. I now feel that if I put the work in, I will be able to access the best possible route of education that will help me in later life. Although I am not yet certain of my future plans, the conference certainly drew me into the field of biology and I am interested in finding out more about areas of specialisation such as marine biology. My peers were also helped greatly, after attending the conference some are interested in pursuing careers in Law and in Medicine.

#WorldBookDay at Y Pant

Approximately 50 pupils participated in celebrating World Book Day with the English Department. Pupils were asked to complete the following activities:
  • Write a review for other pupils based on their favourite book
  • Guess the titles of 10 famous books
  • Write an explanation based on why they love to read
  • Design a book token
  • Write the opening sentence of a horror story

They had a great time with fun, games and snacks in the English Department at lunchtime.  Their book reviews will be very useful when we come to stock our new library.

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Ski Trip 2016

The 2017 ski trip is now sold out with pupils on the reserve list.  Details for the 2018 ski trip will be out soon!

Yasmin Thomas and Tamsin Penberthy have written this fantastic account of this years trip.

On Friday 12th February, 43 eager pupils set off on a 24 hour bus journey to Altenmarkt, Austria.  After a box set of 5 Rocky films, the toilet being repeatedly blocked and hours of Mr Duggan’s snoring we finally arrived at the resort earlier than planned, thanks to our bus drivers Les and Skippy!

Snowman Jasmine and friendsWhilst most people were recovering from the long journey and having had very little sleep, year 8 and 9s were busy building a snowman outside in the sun.  After getting our skis and boots fitted in the chalet, which was a quick and easy process, we spent the rest of the day unpacking and exploring the local Austrian village of Altenmarkt.

Sunday morning was our first skiing day.  We set off up the mountain listening to Mr Duggan and Tamsin doing a duet of the famous, Sunshine Mountain.  Everybody joined in with ‘our faces all a glow.’  The more experienced skiers waved goodbye from the chairlift to the beginners who took to the snow like Bambi on ice.  Although some did not get off to the easiest start (Gilly) the rest fell in love with the sport like every pupil before them.  Both the conditions and weather were phenomenal and the food was the cherry on top of the cake.

Group one got off to shaky start, losing their instructor in the first ten minutes, their communication skills only improved from there on in.  After an eventful day, everyone began to bond as one big family!  Sunday night consisted of an intense game of bowling between pupils, followed by a well-deserved victory from the Donkey of the Day’s team: Jordan Quinn and a short trip to hospital for Alex Potter who’s first day of skiing turned out to be his last.

More crittersMonday turned out to be a snowy day making the conditions slightly more challenging, which of course the experienced skiers loved.  After exchanging the days antics on the bus journey back to resort, everyone looked forward to the ‘I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here’ themed quiz that evening. This included a menu of mealworms, crickets and locus’ enjoyed by Izzy Hallett, Ben Robinson and Ben Sutton.

Ben and critter

By Tuesday/Wednesday the beginners were finally getting to grips with skiing, despite the snowy conditions. Tuesday evening involved a trip to the thermal baths and treating ourselves to a delicious pizza on the way home.  Wednesday evening was a night tobogganing down the Alpine slopes which was enjoyed by all.

Top group photoThursday’s skiing was in a neighbouring resort called Wagrain where the ski race took place in sunny, blue skies.  After wipe outs, a skidoo rescue and multiple snow ball fights, all the pupils completed the course and eagerly awaited to find out the rankings later on that evening. The presentation evening took place in the chalet where pupils, teachers and instructors all came together.  The awards were as followed; best boy skier went to Liam Dando, best girl skier was a joint award between Tamsin Penberthy and Yasmin Thomas and donkey of week went to a well-deserved Thomas Chudley.

Prize night 1

Snowman Tamsin YasminFriday, was our final day on the slopes spent in Flachauwinkl. Marc, the top group’s instructor, planned to wipe-out M-Kat (Mr Muscat) as he skied with them for the day.  Mr Muscat was a first time skier on this trip and by the end of the morning he was incapable of skiing any longer with the top group – he disgracefully had to make his decent from the slopes via a chairlift! Even though he was the youngest member of staff on the trip, he was by far the most tired at the end of the week.

Whole group pic

Yasmin and Tamsin on chair liftLater on that evening, we made our departure from the resort after a tasty final meal at the chalet.  Another smooth journey on the bus which left everyone fast asleep due to the action packed week.  We arrived back at school 4 o’clock the next day with everyone sad to be returning to the rain and cold weather of Wales.  This was another fantastic ski trip and we would like to thank the staff for organising and coping with us for the week.  Bring on 2017!


MFL Conference in Cardiff City Stadium

The MFL Department took 14 pupils to Cardiff City Stadium on the Friday before half term to take part in a carousel of language activities.  The aim of the day was to promote modern foreign languages and boost uptake at GCSE and A-Level.
This is Henri Phillips’ report of the day:

In my opinion, the language day trip was a success and I thoroughly enjoyed the trip.  The first activity we took part in was the STEM Language Ambassadors Problem Solving.  There was a girl from New York who explained why languages were important to study alongside Science and taught us about the top 5 languages in the world (with English being third).  Then we went to Routes into Language held by a Turkish man.  He talked about how languages are involved in different sorts of jobs such as trading goods with other countries and even in sports.  The third activity we attended was something I knew a little about: Spanish fiestas and festivales.  We learnt about La Tomatina, El Encierro (the running of the bulls) and Las Fallas (a festival held in Valencia).  Finally we had a tour of Cardiff City Football Stadium.  Being a football fan I enjoyed this part a lot, especially asking questions and seeing the changing rooms.  Out of the whole trip I enjoyed the session where I got to use my Spanish because I was able to use my knowledge to apply to the challenges set.  I think the trip was a success and should be run every year and I am extremely thankful that I was chosen to go – I would love to do it all over again!

By Henri Phillips, 8×2

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Year 10 Catering Class Take Afternoon Tea at Llanerch Vineyard

The Year 10 Catering class have recently started their first piece of controlled assessment work. Their brief is on Afternoon Tea, as they are becoming very popular in the UK and are an excellent way for chefs to demonstrate their skills at producing baked products. Year 10 have to prepare, cook and serve four items that could be offered as part of an Afternoon Tea menu. This is an exciting and challenging task they have ahead of them. On Tuesday 23rd February, eleven Catering students visited Llanerch Vineyard to experience Afternoon Tea for themselves and get an idea of what types of products they would have to produce. Here are some quotes from the day.


We really enjoyed the trip to Llanerch Vineyard. The wide selection of beverages is an impressive display of how creative people can be to keep their customers interested, teas provided included: Earl Grey, Green Tea and Iron Goddess of Mercy oolong Tea. All the teas were served with a sand timer so that brewing time was accurate.

Thomas Meek and Cameron Bargery


The table set up looked very professional and slightly posher than I expected! We were seated and given hard cased menus so that we could choose from a selection of teas, coffee and soft drinks. We were also give jugs of ice water for the tables. I enjoyed the Afternoon Tea and I think it will influence my ideas for my coursework.

Jasmine Jones


The food was served on a three tier cake stand, with savoury items on the bottom. For savoury they served sandwiches such as ham and mustard, salmon, cheese and pickle, cucumber and egg mayo. My favourite was the ham! On the middle tier there were a selection of scones and Welsh cakes, served with clotted cream and strawberry jam. The scones were really crumbly; however, they were not dry! On the top tier there were quartered strawberries for presentation served with lemon cake, profiteroles, hazelnut brownies and macarons. The trip has given me some good ideas for presentation.

Melissa Cayford


I enjoyed the trip; my favourite was the macarons and the scones. For me this trip was very helpful for my coursework. They showed me how I can serve the food and I have a better understanding of what Afternoon tea is.

Wanessa Sikorska


On the whole I enjoyed the food and I liked how they had timers for your tea. The whole experience for Afternoon Tea at Llanerch Vineyard was lovely and has inspired me with ideas when I do my own Afternoon Tea.

Tyla Smith