New Arrivals

Essential information for parents

We are delighted that your child will be joining us. We have put together some information to help you and your child begin to prepare for September.

We look forward to welcoming you to our intake information evening on Thursday 6th July 2017 at 5.30pm.

This evening is designed to help your child settle quickly into the St Paul's community and is a good opportunity for you and your child to meet their form tutor. We will provide you with information that will help you to prepare for September and provide an opportunity for you to ask any questions that you may have. You will receive an email from us towards the end of May with further details.

Before September

A good place to start


Arrange transport

You'll need to make transport arrangements for your child and detailed information can be found on our transportation page. For safety reasons, students arriving by car must be dropped off and picked up from the Triangle and walk through the underpass.


Buy uniform

You can buy uniform online, over the telephone, or from the on-site shop (full details on our uniform page) but also our supplier will be available at the information evening in July where students can try the uniform on for size.


Have a read about us

Our website, and the information that we send you by email between now and September, contains useful information to help you and your child understand more about how things work at St Paul's. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

The College Day

The fundamentals

Term starts for our new Year 7 joiners on Friday 2nd September 2016 as part of a staggered start; the rest of the school return on Monday. Your child will follow an induction programme for their first few days.

  • The College Day

    The College day runs from 8:30am until 3:25pm and is usually made up of tutor time or assembly and 6 lessons. There are only 4 lessons on Wednesdays as students participate in Enrichment during the afternoon.

  • Timetable

    We follow a two-week timetable; Week A and Week B. Students will be given their timetable during the first week of term where it will be fully explained. Their timetable will also be published on Gateway and emailed to parents for convenience.

College Day Structure

Daily Wednesday
08:30 - 08:50 Tutor Time or Assembly
08:55 - 09:50 Lesson 1
09:50 - 10:45 Lesson 2
10:45 - 12:00 Lesson 3 (inc 20 minute break)
12:00 - 12:50 Lesson 4 or Lunch for 9, 10, 11
12:50 - 13:40 Lesson 5 or Lunch for 7 & 8
13:40 - 14:35 Lesson 6 Enrichment
14:35 - 15:25 Lesson 7 Enrichment
The College day ends at 15:25

What They'll Need

Please help your child to prepare for each school day the night before until they are able to do this by themselves, ensuring they have the right tools and equipment for the lessons on their timetable.


Uniform is an important part of being ready for the day ahead. On certain days, students will also need to bring their sports kit for PE.



Pens, pencils, ruler, eraser, colouring pencils, sharpener, pair of compasses, a protractor and a scientific calculator (e.g., Casio FX-83GT Plus approx cost £7).

Netbook (optional)

If you join our e-learning scheme, your child should bring their netbook into school in its protective carry case for insurance purposes (which can be placed inside the student's bag if preferred).

Many students find it helpful to hire a locker to store PE kit and other possessions at College. The cost of hiring a locker is £25 for 5 years. You'll be able to use our online payment system to pay for a locker.

Food for thought

We are committed to providing healthy meals and snacks and would encourage parents and students to make healthy choices when bringing packed lunches. The Oasis menu rotates on a four week basis and changes every term.

No need to carry cash

Cashless catering at the Oasis restaurant reduces the need for students to carry cash to College, makes the process of serving students quicker and provides parents with information on students' spending.

Students use their finger (biometrics) or their College identity card for cashless payment. A default daily spend limit is set at £4. If you would like to increase or decrease this amount please let us know in September.

Topping up is easy online

It is easy to top up your child's account using the online payment system. We will contact you in July with details of how to set this account up. If your child is using the Oasis for lunch, please try to provide sufficient funds for half a term (approx 6 weeks) if you are able to.

The Oasis Restaurant

We'll be in touch by email: our finance team will email you in July with detailed instructions of how to set up your online payment account, view and top up your child's cashless catering balance and pay for trips/visits and lockers.

Trips and visits

Broadening their horizons

Term Trip/Visit Approx Cost
Summer Blacklands Farm £35
Autumn Theatre Trip/London (Optional) £35
Summer Music Tour/Belgium (Optional) £450
Spring Young Voices/O2 (Optional) £30

Students have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of highly enriching curriculum-focused trips and visits during their time at the College.

To help you plan for the trips/visits in your child's first year, we have provided a list of the provisional trips for year 7 students. Details of each trip will be sent out well before the event to help you plan and budget. If you ever wish to discuss financing trips/visits, please contact our finance department in complete confidence.

More on Trips/Visits


  • Keeping Up-to-Date

    Most communication is sent to parents via email so please make sure you keep us informed of any changes to your email address. Our College website, Twitter and Facebook are a good source of news and are updated regularly. They will also include any special announcements or plans to cover unexpected events (like extreme weather).

  • Parents' Gateway

    Parents' Gateway is our secure online portal that will enable you to view your child's timetable, ILT (homework), achievement, attendance and progress information online. You will also find other useful information like the College calendar and Staff Contact List. We will email you with instructions for retrieving your login for Parents' Gateway in the second week of September.

  • Reporting to Parents

    We report to parents throughout the year through an interim and profile profile report published on Parents' Gateway, and through our parents' consultation evening. You will be notified by email when a new report is available for you to access. Our reporting schedule is available on our reporting to parents page.

  • Open Door

    Our head teacher, Mr Carter, offers parents the opportunity to drop in without an appointment to discuss any issues or concerns they may have on the first Wednesday of the month between 4:30pm and 8pm.

  • Online Payments

    You can make payments for trips/visits, lunch card top-ups and locker hire online via Parents’ Gateway. We are unable to give you access to Parents' Gateway until the second week of September but you can still make payments online (instructions to follow separately by email).

Independent Learning Tasks (ILT)

Students need to complete 1 to 1.5 hours of ILT per night during year 7, made up of ILTs that are set by their teachers and supplemented with reading, research and skills practice. The amount of time spent on ILTs will increase as students move up the school.

All ILTs are recorded on Gateway by teachers and are accessible to students and their parents. Students will be given a small notebook in case they need to jot anything down about ILTs in class.

Top tips

Top tips for a successful start

  • Have a permanent box in the kitchen, bedroom or wherever there is room with a copy of their timetable above it. Each evening tip the entire contents of their bag into the box and re-pack. Have spare pens and pencils waiting in the box to replace lost ones.
  • Have important keys (door, locker) attached by an extendable line to their school bag.
  • Bring a refillable water bottle to school each day.
  • If you have any queries or concerns, you may email your child's form tutor directly. For academic or curriculum related queries, please contact your child's subject teacher instead. Email addresses for all of our staff are available on St Paul's Gateway.
  • Check on Gateway daily for new ILTs (independent learning tasks). Set aside 1 hour each week day evening for independent learning tasks). Try to create a regular routine for completing ILTs and make sure your child has a quiet, comfortable and distraction-free place to work on them.
  • If there are no ILTs set use the time for reading, or revision for science or topics studied in geography or history. Learn some more language verbs. Complete a few exercises on the 'My Maths' website. Write a poem or song, draw something, read some daily news and write your opinion on it. Look up some recipes and source food locally ready to cook at the weekend.

Getting on Gateway

Get connected with Gateway

For Students

In the first week of September, students will be given their personalised login for St Paul's Gateway which will allow them to access their timetable, ILTs, interim/profile reports, courses and much more. Please reassure your child that they will be given plenty of support and training in their first 6 weeks to help them with all of this, including laptop/Gateway training during enrichment on Wednesday afternoons.

For Parents

We prioritise the preparation of student accounts and usually have St Paul's Gateway accounts for parents ready by the end of the second week in September. When your account is ready we will email you instructions of how to get started. You can still make online payments even if you don't have access to Gateway yet. Our finance team will send you an email in July with detailed instructions of how to make online payments.

More on Gateway

Have we missed anything?

Please let us know if we have missed anything that may be helpful to you as a new arrival.