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Secretary of State for Education visits Pathfinder schools

From left, Secretary of State for Education – the Rt Hon Kit Malthouse MP, Chair of the Pathfinder MAT Board – John Hattam, CEO of Pathfinder MAT and Executive Headteacher of Archbishop Holgate’s School – Andrew Daly, Chair of Governors at Archbishop Holgate’s School – Jane Lewis.

Pathfinder Multi Academy Trust was delighted to welcome the new Secretary of State for Education, the Rt Hon Kit Malthouse MP, to visit two of its schools.

Formed in 2016, Pathfinder Multi Academy Trust is a partnership of eleven church and community schools serving more than 4,300 students and their families across York.

CEO of Pathfinder Multi Academy Trust and Executive Headteacher of Archbishop Holgate’s School, Andrew Daly, said: “It has been a pleasure to welcome the Secretary of State and to showcase the many ways we work together as a multi academy trust to ensure we provide the very best education possible for all the young people across our school communities.”

The Secretary of State began with a visit to New Earswick Primary School where he met with the Headteacher, school staff and students and had a tour of the school. New Earswick joined Pathfinder in 2017 after being placed into special measures following an inadequate Ofsted judgement. Today, the school is rated as good overall with outstanding for its leadership and management and early years provision.

New Earswick’s Headteacher, Angela Oswald, said: “It has been a privilege to meet the new Secretary of State and have the opportunity to share our school improvement journey over the past four years. Like most things in schools, our successes and achievements are the result of a team effort working together at both a local school level and as part of a wider community of schools.”

The Secretary of State also visited Archbishop Holgate’s School which recently celebrated being judged outstanding in all areas by Ofsted. In 2021, Archbishop Holgate’s was also designated as the Teaching School Hub for the Ryedale, Scarborough and York region, responsible for delivering teacher training and development across more than 150 schools.

During his visit, the Secretary of State spoke to a group of trainee teachers, toured the school, met with school and academy trust staff and talked to students about their favourite subjects and future aspirations.

Andrew Daly added: “Whilst important, schools are much more than external judgements and examination results and it has been gratifying to give the Secretary of State a snapshot of the teaching and learning which takes place at our schools each and every day. We are fortunate to have so many strong schools and multi academy trusts in York and we also enjoy a close partnership with the local authority which enables us to work together for the benefit of all schools and their students across the city.”

Pathfinder was formed initially between Archbishop Holgate’s School and Badger Hill, Hempland and Heworth primary schools. Along with New Earswick, Pathfinder has since welcomed Acomb, Clifton with Rawcliffe, Rufforth, St Lawrence’s and Tang Hall primary schools and is currently working with St Barnabas CE Primary School who are in the process of joining the trust.

Chair of the Pathfinder Multi Academy Trust Board, John Hattam, said: “We are delighted that the hard work and achievements of our schools and the wider trust have been recognised with this visit from the Secretary of State for Education. We believe the close working partnership that exists between our schools, other academy trusts, community schools and the local authority has been core to our success and development as a multi academy trust.”

22 September 2022|

A message on the death of Her Majesty the Queen

As we reflect on the sad news of the death of Queen Elizabeth II our thoughts and prayers go to the Royal Family and everyone in our community as we process this news. The Church of England have produced a prayer which we would like to share with you:

Gracious God, we give thanks
for the life of your servant Queen Elizabeth,
for her faith and her dedication to duty.
Bless our nation as we mourn her death
and may her example continue to inspire us;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Today, in school, we have taken time with students and staff to reassure them and to reflect on the life and significance of Her Majesty the Queen. We started the day with a whole staff reflection and a time of prayer in morning registration time for students. At midday we participated in the national two-minute silence and this afternoon students viewed this morning’s dedicated BBC Newsround programme that explores this momentous event. Next week in Form Tutor Collective Worship we will continue to reflect on the Queen’s life and faith. During this period of national mourning there will be a small space set aside in both the School Chapel and Reception, which will contain a book for recording thoughts and reflections.

Current government advice is that schools should remain open as usual, however, we will not be using our social media accounts next week unless there is an emergency. We will keep you updated during this period of national mourning.

9 September 2022|

Archbishop of York joins Year 13 Leavers Celebration

Archbishop Holgate’s School were delighted to welcome the Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, to take part in the school’s Year 13 leavers celebration.

Attended by students, parents and teachers, the evening was an opportunity to celebrate and reflect on the students’ achievements and time at school before they sit their A Level exams.

Head of the Sixth Form, Francesca De Lashley, said: “We were delighted the Archbishop was able to attend the evening and share in celebrating our Year 13’s time at school. For many of our Sixth Form students this marks the end of seven years at Archbishop Holgate’s and was the last time they will all spend together in school. It was a lovely evening, sharing memories with friends and teachers and was also an opportunity to thank the Year 13 students for the many contributions they’ve made during their time at school.”

The Archbishop shared many words of encouragement telling students to use the gifts they’ve been given to the full and to pursue their dreams to benefit themselves and the world.

He also said the school values of Justice, Compassion, Forgiveness and Trust are beautiful things that not just the school needs but that the world needs and encouraged students to let them shine out of their lives.

The evening also included prayers and readings from students and staff and musical pieces performed by the school’s Unity Choir.

Headteacher, Andrew Daly, said: “I would like to thank the Archbishop for taking the time to join our leavers celebration and for his inspiring words of encouragement. The students have shown an incredible amount of resilience and determination over the past two years and it was a real pleasure to celebrate their time at Archbishop Holgate’s as a school community.”

Watch a video from the evening below.

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23 May 2022|

Archbishop Holgate’s judged outstanding in all areas by Ofsted

Archbishop Holgate’s has been awarded the highest possible rating by Ofsted following a two-day inspection which judged the school to be outstanding in all areas.

Inspectors assessed the quality of education, behaviour and attitudes of pupils, their personal development, the sixth form provision, the leadership and management of the school and its overall effectiveness, judging all to be outstanding and concluding: “Archbishop Holgate’s School is an exceptional place for pupils to learn.”

Headteacher, Andrew Daly, said: “I am extremely proud of this report and the education we provide for all students at Archbishop Holgate’s. The outcome of this inspection is testament to the efforts of our entire school community, especially the hard work and positive attitude of our students and the commitment and service of our staff team.”

“Given that the new inspection framework is much more rigorous and judgements harder to achieve, combined with the ongoing demands of the pandemic, makes it even more pleasing that inspectors did not identify any areas for development.”

Highlighting the many areas in which the school excels, the report praised the quality of the curriculum and extra-curricular opportunities available to pupils, stating: “The curriculum at this school is exemplary. All pupils benefit greatly from lessons in a wide range of subjects, alongside a set of extensive enrichment opportunities.” The Sixth Form curriculum was also noted to be “exceptionally strong.”

Inspectors described behaviour at the school as exceptional and said: “Pupils are calm, orderly and respectful. Pupils are confident, articulate and produce consistently high-quality work. Their ability to recall key content from the curriculum is noteworthy.”

During their visit, inspectors met with the Headteacher, senior leaders and governors; talked to pupils about their work and visited lessons; observed extra-curricular activities and form time sessions; spoke to curriculum leaders and teachers and looked in depth at areas of the curriculum, including English, Mathematics, History, Geography and Art.

Inspectors also reviewed the systems in place to keep pupils safe, saying: “Leaders are tenacious in their efforts to keep pupils safe. The safeguarding training all staff receive is of the highest quality.”

The additional pastoral capacity put in place to provide mental health and wellbeing support for pupils was also recognised in the report.

Teaching and learning across all subjects was praised with inspectors saying: “Teachers have strong knowledge of the subjects that they teach. They deliver lessons with passion. As a result of high-quality training, teachers use a range of strategies to ensure pupils remember what they have been taught.”

Inspectors sought the views of members of the school community, including parents, pupils and staff. One parent told inspectors: “The staff live and breathe the school values, and that is passed onto pupils. There is a unique and indefinable sense of welcoming at the school, no matter which member of staff you speak to.” All staff said they feel valued and referred to being part of a special community and are incredibly proud to work at the school.

The wider personal development of pupils and preparation for life after Archbishop Holgate’s was identified as another strength of the school with the report saying: “Important topics, such as maintaining healthy relationships, preparing for the world of work, and developing leadership skills, are planned and taught exceptionally well. There is also considerable strength in the school’s wider provision of careers information and guidance for pupils of all ages.”

The support for children with special educational needs and/or disabilities was deemed exceptionally strong with inspectors saying: “Teachers receive high-quality guidance on how to support these pupils. Well trained and knowledgeable teaching assistants play an active role in supporting pupils with SEND. Leaders are fully committed to eradicating any barriers to learning for these pupils. As a result, all pupils achieve highly.”

The report recognised the strength of governance at the school noting: “Governors hold leaders strongly to account. Governors and leaders are constantly seeking to adapt and improve the school.”

Chair of Governors, John Hattam, said: “Archbishop Holgate’s is a special place because of the way it blends its four core values of Justice, Compassion, Forgiveness and Trust with a focus and determination by all staff to ensure that every pupil achieves their maximum potential.  We were delighted to see these foundations of the school’s performance so explicitly recognised in the Ofsted report.”

Andrew Daly, added: “I have had the privilege of leading Archbishop Holgate’s for the last twelve years, during which time the school has been afforded a number of accolades including outstanding SIAMS inspections and more recently accreditation as a national Teaching School Hub. We are well known for our excellent examination outcomes for all groups of students at both GCSE and Post 16, regularly some of the best in the country. However, this inspection framework is about much more than academic results, for a school to be judged as outstanding it must consistently be providing an all-round education of the highest standard to all students. This is what our report recognises and what we are most delighted about.”

“We are so pleased with our inspection and the recognition it affords to the collective efforts of staff, students, families and our wider community. Please rest assured that, as always, we will continue to strive to ensure that our school remains the best possible place for students to learn and grow as individuals.”

In February 2021, Archbishop Holgate’s was selected as one of the government’s new teaching school hubs, a national network of 87 school-led centres of excellence for teacher and leadership training and development. Working in partnership across the Ryedale, Scarborough and York region, the Pathfinder Teaching School Hub, based at Archbishop Holgate’s, provides high-quality training and continuous professional development for teachers at every stage of their career.

The school is also a founding member of Pathfinder Multi Academy Trust, a partnership of ten church and community schools serving more than 4,000 students and their families across York.

Read the Ofsted Report
23 November 2021|

Welcome to the new school term

I hope everyone has had an enjoyable summer break. We are very much looking forward to welcoming all students back to school next week. Whilst the usual AHS Newsletter and Parent Bulletin with updates from each Head of Year will return next week I thought it would be useful to share key pieces of information about the start of term. Some of this was sent before the summer break but sometimes a reminder can be helpful.

Wellbeing Newsletter

Each week we send a Wellbeing Newsletter home as part of the Parent Bulletin, I hope the latest one (link below) will be useful as we begin the new academic term.

Wellbeing Newsletter 23

Covid controls to support a successful start to term

I would like to thank parents for all the positive feedback about Enrichment Week at the end of the last academic year, and in the months ahead we look forward to the wide range of extra-curricular and enrichment activities available at school progressing as planned. This is an integral part of all the AHS Journey for all our students. However, as you would expect the school will continue to have in place the robust Covid-19 systems of control that worked effectively last year. We have also decided in the early weeks of term to continue to take a cautious approach as students move around school.

As such we are strongly recommending that all students wear a face covering when moving between lessons and we will be reminding students to put their masks on when they enter the building.

I would like to thank you in advance for your support with this and in ensuring that your children bring a mask to school each day. This is not a precaution that I see lasting throughout the term but is one that I feel will be beneficial when we first return and the new term settles.

Tuesday 7th September – Start of term arrangements for Year 7 and 12

Year 7 – I know Miss Kincell and her team are looking forward to seeing everyone on Tuesday and are putting lots of top tips on their transition twitter feed @AHS_Transition. We also have a wealth of useful information that can be accessed via the homepage of the website.

Year 7 students should go to the Main Hall at 8.30am, there will be lots of staff available to guide them and support them with hand washing before they enter. All AHS operated buses will run as timetabled from this day. Our catering team will be providing all Year 7 students with a free snack for break time and their biometrics will be completed in time for them to purchase lunch on 7th September.

Year 12 – A huge congratulations to our new Year 12 for their GCSE results that have put them in a strong position for the start of their Post-16 career. I very much enjoyed the transition meetings that I was part of after results day. I know that the Sixth Form Team continued to meet students and their families of both our new Year 12 and Year 13 cohorts throughout the summer. A huge thank you to all those that attended, we appreciate your time and the effort made in supporting your son/daughter in planning the year or two ahead. Mrs De Lashley and her team are really excited about the year ahead.

Year 12 students should go to the Sixth Form Foyer, the Sixth Form team will be there to greet them and ensure that they have washed their hands before entering.

Wednesday 8th September – Start of term arrangements for all year groups

All year groups in school with an 8.35am drift in for an 8.45am start; all students should go directly to their new form room. There will be lots of staff available to guide students and ensure that they wash their hands before entering the building.

New Year 8

  • If you were in:7CAd, you have now become:  8Ap and your new form room is: IT3
  • If you were in:7Bl, you have now become:  8CBr and your new form room is: Hi3
  • If you were in:7CMp, you have now become:  8CMp and your new form room is: MA5
  • If you were in:7Mr, you have now become:  8ECe and your new form room is: Gg2
  • If you were in:7Hv, you have now become:  8GBl and your new form room is: Sc3
  • If you were in:7Gr, you have now become:  8Ob and your new form room is: Sc2
  • If you were in:7Cy, you have now become:  8LP and your new form room is: MFL4
  • If you were in:7Cm, you have now become:  8LWs and your new form room is: En8
  • If you were in:7NTh, you have now become:  8NTh and your new form room is: Sc1
  • If you were in:7Hf, you have now become:  8KCe and your new form room is: En4
  • If you were in:7WNo, you have now become:  8WNo and your new form room is: Sc5

New Year 9

  • If you were in:8ABt, you have now become:  9ABt and your new form room is: En11
  • If you were in:8NAm, you have now become:  9EWh and your new form room is: Ma9
  • If you were in:8JHe, you have now become:  9JHe and your new form room is: RE1
  • If you were in:8Di, you have now become:  9KGn and your new form room is: MFL1
  • If you were in:8KMd, you have now become:  9KMd and your new form room is: Ma10
  • If you were in:8MHe, you have now become:  9MHe and your new form room is: MFL2
  • If you were in:8Pi, you have now become:  9Pi and your new form room is: Ma7
  • If you were in:8Pl, you have now become:  9Pl and your new form room is: Gg3
  • If you were in:8WBn, you have now become:  9RDn and your new form room is: En5
  • If you were in:8MDn, you have now become:  9RPR and your new form room is: Hi6
  • If you were in:8MLn, you have now become:  9SLa and your new form room is: Re6

New Year 10

  • If you were in:9BMo, you have now become:  10BMo and your new form room is: L37
  • If you were in:9Br, you have now become:  10Br and your new form room is: En6
  • If you were in:9Gs, you have now become:  10Gs and your new form room is: PE1
  • If you were in:9Hu, you have now become:  10Hu and your new form room is: Ma12
  • If you were in:9CAL, you have now become:  10KPe and your new form room is: En2
  • If you were in:9Kx, you have now become:  10Kx and your new form room is: Hi5
  • If you were in:9Mb, you have now become:  10Mb and your new form room is: Ma11
  • If you were in:9MSt, you have now become:  10MSt and your new form room is: Ma8
  • If you were in:9EMl, you have now become:  10Ps and your new form room is: IT2
  • If you were in:9SMr, you have now become:  10SMr and your new form room is: Ma2
  • If you were in:9Wb, you have now become:  10Wb and your new form room is: Sc8

New Year 11

  • If you were in:10EMo, you have now become:  11AL and your new form room is: RE2
  • If you were in:10BDu, you have now become:  11BDu and your new form room is: Ar2
  • If you were in:10By, you have now become:  11By and your new form room is: En1
  • If you were in:10RMe, you have now become:  11CR and your new form room is: En10
  • If you were in:10ERo, you have now become:  11Ero and your new form room is: RE3
  • If you were in:10MPe, you have now become:  11Ev and your new form room is: En12
  • If you were in:10IMa, you have now become:  11IMa and your new form room is: En3
  • If you were in:10JLi, you have now become:  11JLi and your new form room is: Sc4
  • If you were in:10RGi, you have now become:  11RGi and your new form room is: MFL3
  • If you were in:10LBr, you have now become:  11RMr and your new form room is: En7
  • If you were in:10Wa, you have now become:  11Wa and your new form room is: SC6

New Year 13

  • If you were in:12BKi, you have now become:  13BKi and your new form room is: Ma4
  • If you were in:12GSw, you have now become:  13GSw and your new form room is: L16
  • If you were in:12HGa, you have now become:  13HGa and your new form room is: L32
  • If you were in:12Lv, you have now become:  13Lv and your new form room is: SC9
  • If you were in:12Nc, you have now become:  13Nc and your new form room is: Ar1
  • If you were in:12Os, you have now become:  13Os and your new form room is: L25
  • If you were in:12Kt, you have now become:  13SL and your new form room is: BS2

School Uniform

 We would like to remind parents and students of the expectations for school uniform from September

  • All items of uniform should be clearly labelled with the student’s name.
  • School bags should be fit for purpose and large enough to fit an A4 folder and text books inside.
  • Hairstyles should be neat and not follow extremes of fashion. Only natural hair colours are allowed.
  • Students may wear one plain 3mm stud in each ear. Due to health and safety issues, no additional piercing is allowed.
  • Heavy makeup is not allowed. We would prefer Year 7 students to not wear any makeup.
  • Nail varnish, gel/acrylic and false nails are also not allowed.
  • Unacceptable school trousers: skinny, super skinny fits are not allowed. No leggings or jeans. No material containing viscose/polyamide/elastane mix, cotton/elastane mix, lycra or jean material. Trousers should have no decorative zips, studs or pockets.
  • Unacceptable school skirts: no skinny, tube or bodycon or other tight fitting lycra, elastane mixed material skirts.

Our school uniform supplier is Keal Teamwear, 105 Walmgate, York YO1 9UA. Please visit the school website page for full guidance: https://archbishopholgates. academy/parents/school-life/school-uniform/ If you are unsure, please contact the school, we will be only too willing to help.

Covid Controls

It remains crucial that no child attends the school site if they are displaying any symptoms of Covid-19.

  • A high temperature
  • A new, continuous cough
  • A loss or change to your sense of smell

Any child displaying symptoms should book and attend a PCR test and remain at home until they receive the result.

Our COVID risk assessment remains as important as ever and therefore students will be encouraged to wash their hands on arrival using soap and water and will have opportunities to sanitise throughout the day. Additionally, we will ensure that all classrooms remain well ventilated to limit the spread of transmission.

Children will be welcome to and are encouraged to continue using face coverings in corridors and social spaces where they feel it is appropriate to do so.

Final thoughts

As ever I am excited about the start of term and all we will collectively achieve in the months ahead. I will continue to prioritise regular communication each week and families should not hesitate to contact school if they have any questions, concerns or feedback. I know that all the staff are looking forward to seeing students and supporting them to make the most of the year ahead and the next stage of their AHS Journey.

Kind regards,
Andrew Daly

2 September 2021|

New schools guide for parents

The Guardian has launched a new schools guide to help parents find key information and data about secondary schools.

Schools are judged on 10 indicators, including academic progress and attainment, attendance, performance of particular groups, admissions, financial stability and the quality of the local environment. The guide uses the latest Department for Education data to create scores for each secondary school.

We are pleased to report that Archbishop Holgate’s achieved excellent scores for student progress, attainment, sixth form performance and progress of disadvantaged students.


Progress: Excellent. Progress up to the ages of 16 and 18 are both excellent.


Attainment: Excellent. Attainment at the ages of 16 and 18 are both excellent.


Sixth form: Excellent. Attainment is excellent, progress is excellent and destinations at 18 are above average.


Disadvantaged pupils: Excellent. Progress up to age 16 is excellent. Progress at 16-18 is excellent.

With no published league tables last year due to the cancellation of GCSE and A Level exams, the schools guide captures a range of factors to more broadly reflect a school’s success and performance.

Click the following link to see the school guides page for Archbishop Holgate’s:

16 February 2021|