Make a date for your Student-Led Conference!

We would like to invite you to our first Student-Led Conferences (SLCs) of the academic year! This will be our students opportunity to present, share and discuss their learning with you, their Crew Leader and any other invited staff.  

SLCs are a very important way to engage students in understanding and taking ownership of their learning and you, as a parent, have the opportunity to appreciate your son’s / daughter’s learning and achievement across all areas of the curriculum.  We will also be able to discuss how you can support their learning further.

During the weeks beginning 26th November and 3rd December, every student will be hosting a Student-Led Conference. Please select a day and a time that is convenient for you to attend the SLC.

We are counting on 100% attendance at conferences so that we can encourage, support and recognise the progress in learning that has been made by students in their first term of the new school year.  Therefore, your role in this process is crucial in supporting the learning of your son/daughter.

You may have already received an email from your child with the link to the online booking form, but you can also access the form by clicking on your child’s Crew name below:

E25 (Year 7)

Crew Ali (Mrs Townson)

Crew Parkinson (Miss Hickson)

Crew Shackleton (Mr Brown)

Crew Turing (Miss Haughey)

E24 (Year 8)

Crew Churchill (Mrs Poncia)

Crew Finch (Mrs Parker)

Crew Mandela (Mr Smith)

Crew Young (Mr Pearson)

HUMAN Superstars!

7 Pioneer are just over half way through their first expedition at XP East. Time is flying by, but I would like to take a moment to pause and appreciate the students in 7 Pioneer who have consistently worked hard throughout their time at XP East in Hums.

These pupils show our Habits of Work and Learning (HOWLs) to an excellent level. They always Work Hard, stay focused, and put their best effort into every piece of work they do. They Get Smart by responding to all critique and feedback given to their work, whether that’s from myself or their peers, so they can improve. They are always a pleasure to have in the classroom, they Be Kind to their peers and staff, and are always respectful and compassionate.

The other students in Pioneer are also close to this superstar status – let’s get the whole class there!

Here’s our Hums superstars: Thomas, Charlotte, Junia, Abi, Jess, Ava, Charlie, Alice, Dylan, Torran, Callum and Cerys, with their drafts and final draft of their First World War Letters. I would like to appreciate them for their fantastic conduct in Hums since being at XP East.  Keep it up!

Letters, Peer Critique and Tea!

This week, 7 Pioneer have been busy drafting and re-drafting their letters from the perspective of soldiers in the trenches of the Great War. Each letter was inspired by a Doncaster soldier who is buried at Hyde Park Cemetery, whose life and death we explored during our fieldwork there.

The pupils have finished draft 2 and gave each other peer critique, making sure they were kind, specific and helpful in their feedback. A particular mention to Dylan S, Ava and Marcus who gave superb feedback that was kind, specific and helpful. Pupils get smart by responding to this feedback and using it to improve their work – it’s great to see the progression between each draft!

Before the final write up, there was one very important job for us to do! Pioneer stained paper with tea, ready for their final draft write up tomorrow. This will create beautiful work and give their letters a more authentic appearance, almost as if they’ve come straight out of the trenches on the Western Front!

Here’s Pioneer in action today:


Getting Ready for SLCs!

Crew Churchill are currently working hard, preparing for their first Student Led Conference of Year 8.

Following reflections about our last SLCs in Year 7, we have created an action plan so we know what needs doing and when.  We are now selecting the work we want to share, and reflecting deeply about how it shows our learning and links to our expedition.

Aran is super organised, making notes on cue cards and working hard at home to make sure she is prepared!



Lost Property

We have a few more Lost Property items. If you recognise anything from the pictures attached please contact the office. The items will be kept in school for 4 weeks from the date of this post after which time they will be redistributed.

A Letter from the Trenches: Draft 2

Students in 7Explorer are working hard writing draft two of their letter from the trenches.

After reading teacher critique, listening to Callum read aloud draft one of his letter (which is amazing) and watching clips from Peter Jackson’s moving film ‘They Shall Not Grow Old’ to inspire us even more, we are purple polishing to make our letters even better!

Board of Director’s Meeting Update

I wanted to take an opportunity to highlight the hard work that goes on behind the scenes in our school. The Board of Directors of XP Trust met this morning as part of their role within our Governance structure. All governance at the Trust is focused on active and purposeful engagement of stakeholders to ensure each school is continually proving and improving their practice.

The specific role of the Directors however is to:
– Ensure our clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
– Hold the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its students
– Oversee the financial performance of the school and make sure its money is well spent
– Ensure the legal and financial responsibilities of XP are carried out.

Our directors are made up of parents and people from a range of professional backgrounds. You can read about the individual Directors here, but to illustrate: we have a prison Governor for HMYOI Moorland as Chair, two Principal Lecturers in Education for Sheffield Hallam University, the CEO for Lincoln City FC, an internal auditor for DMBC, a solicitor, and an experienced Governor of a Primary school from within the Trust.

The Directors all lead committees linked to safeguarding, curriculum, finance, premises (to name just a few) but I think you will agree, the experience and expertise of our Directors are of a very high calibre indeed!

Such meetings are tough because the level of detail required is precise, and the questions that arise from a committee’s findings are challenging. What particularly struck me however was the level of honesty in our discussions. Our work is so important, and the stakes are so high that conversations should not be fudged by not having the courage to speak up, or ask that particularly question to challenge the status quo.

No one in our Governance structures is trying to catch anyone out or embarrass anybody. What lies at the heart of their approach is a rock solid – cast iron authentic commitment to trying to create the best schools in the world.

Consequently, let it be said that we welcome this level of challenge.

Right, there’s work to do!

The Governance at XP website can be accessed here

What is an Eco-School?

Today in STEAM 8 Pioneer have begun to explore what it means to be an Eco School.  We have done some research to find out what we have to do to gain accreditation, focussing particularly on what an Eco School looks, sounds and feels like.

This afternoon we’ll be carrying out an environmental review of our school, to help us evaluate to what extent we meet the criteria to become an Eco School.


Our Rebel Daughters

As E24 continue to explore how we can create a place of our own, 8 Pioneer have been looking at Women’s Suffrage and how it is related to Doncaster.

We have been analysing historical sources, exploring a woman’s place in society during the Victorian Era and examining why some women decided to fight for the right for them to have the vote, just like men!

We were fascinated to learn that Doncaster was actually a very important based for key Suffragettes, such as Lilian Lenton and Violet Key-Jones, due to its location and ease of movement offered by the railways.

This learning target has generated lots of discussion in class, including tackling the key question: “is violence ever justified?”

Student Bikes

Last week we had two bikes stolen from XP East during the day. Unfortunately this is not the first time. The bikes were locked up but it looks like the thieves have cut them with some cutting device to take them.

The CCTV shows them jumping over the fence to get the bikes. This footage has been shared with the police.

We would like to remind parents and students to lock any bikes up with a secure lock and ensure the bike is covered by your own home insurance. Because the bikes are not our property we are unable to claim on our insurance.

Cleaner wanted for XP East!

We are looking for a cleaner to join our team working 5:30am to 7:30am Monday to Friday (term time only) to clean our new school.

Duties and responsibilities include:

  • Cleaning designated areas (dusting, sweeping, vacuuming, mopping, toilet cleaning, desk cleaning, etc)
  • Replenishing toilet rolls and soaps when necessary
  • Cleaning internal windows and doors
  • Emptying waste bins and taking rubbish to the bin store
  • Operating floor cleaning machinery after training
  • Notifying management of any repairs and maintenance issues
  • Following all health and safety regulations

Applicants must:

  • Have previous cleaning experience, ideally in a school environment
  • Have general awareness of health and safety legislations
  • Be punctual, reliable and trustworthy
  • Be able to manage time effectively
  • Be able to work to a schedule

Pay: National Living Wage.

The deadline for applications is Thursday 22nd November 2018.

To apply please send your CV to