Moving to a cashless environment within school

Mandatory Requirement for all parents.


parent-pay-round-logoAs you will be aware, via the introduction of ParentPay, we have extended the choice of payment methods parents can use to pay for additional items such as school meals, uniform, travel expenses etc. This introduction has proven popular with parents and the feedback we have received suggests that most parents find this a more convenient way to pay.
We are now in a position where the majority of transactions are received through ParentPay and the amount of students paying for school meals with cash via our automated money collection machines is reducing.

The introduction of new £5 and £10 polymere banknotes has forced us to review our existing infrastructure as our current money collection machines will not accept this new type of banknote. To upgrade our systems would require significant investment, using money that we would prefer to spend on educating our pupils.

Having reviewed various options, we have come to the decision that it is now necessary that we ask all parents who are still providing cash to their children to pay for school meals, to now switch to using ParentPay.

This does note mean that you can no longer use cash to make payments…

paypoint-logoOpening a ParentPay account is free of charge and is easy to set up. ParentPay offers a range of payment methods including debit card, credit card, pre-paid cards and also cash.
For parents who prefer to pay by cash, we can arrange for a PayPoint card to be issued that will link to your ParentPay account. This will enable cash payments to be made through the PayPoint retailer network.

Letters will be sent out today to all parents who are not currently registered with ParentPay. This letter will include a unique user code and password that will enable you to set up your account via visiting

If you do not have access to the internet or would prefer to use a PayPoint card, please contact our Finance Team for assistance on 01902 551589.

We believe these changes will not only enable us to operate more efficiently, they will also offer an improved parent and pupil experience and safer school environment.

Yours faithfully

Mr. S Williams
Academy Business Manager

Student wins debating competition!

A student at Our Lady and St Chad Catholic Academy has won a prestigious debating competition. A sixth form student aged 17, entered the event after being nominated by the school for the 31st Annual Caterham Public Speaking Competition, held at Princethorpe College in Rugby on Sunday 10th April 2016. He formulated arguments on why “Practice Makes Perfect”. He had to speak for four minutes, whilst being assessed on appearance, clarity, timing and persuasiveness. He fought off competition from eight other schools on the day to come first. This was the first time Our Lady and St Chad had entered the competition.

The student said – “The event was an amazing experience, not just winning first place but the very audience and the people I was competing against. When I first arrived at Princethorpe College, the size of the school made me feel very intimidated and very anxious. As I stepped into the building it was as though they were all waiting for me because everyone within that hall were so welcoming. I was humbled when I saw the judges and the host of the event greeted me because I honestly didn’t think they would be so welcoming to someone they just met.”

“Walking into the hall and analysing my stage was very exciting because they told me that they I could move around and I use the stage in the way that I wanted. Being the seventh speaker wasn’t very nerve-wracking but stepping onto the stage whilst I was being introduced was the scary part because over hundred eyes were staring at me; I had spoken publicly at church (Living Waters Church) many times but this time it felt different. As soon as the timer went all I had to rely on was God as well as the prayers I made and once I started my speech everything flowed and it was the best speech I have ever delivered.”

The student will now move on to represent the region in a national debating competition in September.


OLSC Ski Visit 2017

It is the aim of the school not only to encourage students in their academic studies, but also to offer them opportunities to experience environments outside of their daily experiences, which will in turn develop their social skills, physical fitness and broaden their horizons.  We are therefore organising a school Snowsport visit to the Aosta Valley in Italy, using Interski, the UK’s market leader.

Date:                     18/03/2017 – 26/03/2017

Resort:                  Pila, Aosta Valley

Company:             Interski

Cost:                     £740

Please see Mr Bunn in CM6 to receive a letter with information regarding the Ski & Snowboard Visit in 2017. Once the reply slip has been signed and handed into Mr Bunn a ParentPay letter will be produced and sent out with login details. Parents will then be able to pay the deposit of £100 (Ski) or £130 (Snowboard).

Please see the poster here!

Emma Reynolds visits Our Lady and St Chad Catholic Academy to praise excellent ‘A’ level results

Emma Reynolds, Labour MP for Wolverhampton North East, visited Our Lady and St Chad Catholic Academy to congratulate students and staff for their excellent ‘A’ level results and for moving up the national school performance league table.

Emma said: “I was delighted to visit Our Lady and St Chad Catholic Academy to congratulate students and staff for their recently announced place in the national performance league table.
“It is brilliant news that the Academy is ranked amongst the top schools in the city for academic success and amongst the top schools in the country for vocational results post-16.
“I took the opportunity to congratulate students and staff on their achievements. I also had the chance to meet some Year 12 students to talk about my role as their MP and the way that Parliament makes laws.

Our Lady and St Chad Principal Miss Ellis praised the incredible hard work and skill of staff and students: “The progress, aspirations and successes of the students in the sixth form is inspiring. Having Emma Reynolds, MP here with us to share in these achievements has been invaluable today”

Zoo Nation Dance Project

Fourteen of our gifted and talented students in dance have been working on a project with The Grand Theatre and London based hip hop dance company Zoo Nation. Since September they have been training twice a week with professional choreographer and dancer Nathan Marsh on a dance based on a twisted version of Humpty Dumpty. They then performed this at The Grand Theatre in a professional show alongside 11 other schools in the Black Country. From this, students will be chosen from each school as stand out talent and will train with Zoo Nation over February half term on a new dance for a curtain raiser at the end of February when Zoo Nation tour their show ‘Into the Hoods’ to Wolverhampton. We also entered the Great Big Dance Off which is a national competition and came 1st in the Regional Heat for the West Midlands and are now in the finals in July competing against the rest of the qualifiers from the UK.

Students: Xsia Blair, Keviann Dawkins, Mya Wright, Malcolm Kimani, Jasmine Brissett, Aaliyah Brooks, Aleasha Brooks, Shannon Gray, Sarah Lucy Allen, Tanisha Haughton, Beth Henry, Chris Otim, Chido Mhondiwa and Diana Maruta.

OLSC Dance Project 1

Click, shop and give for free

To help raise valuable funds needed to support school activities, Our Lady & St Chad Catholic Academy have joined TheGivingMachine, a fundraising website that will allow you to generate cash donations without it costing you a penny. There are over 8000 schools & charities taking part in this program, with the successful causes raising £1,000’s every year at no extra cost to their supporters! is a UK registered charity, whose sole aim is to facilitate raising money for UK charitable causes and schools. By shopping online via TheGivingMachine at your favourite shops will generate a free cash donation with every single purchase. With stores like Amazon, Ebay, M&S, NEXT, Tesco, Sainsbury and John Lewis taking part, you are bound to find what you want from your favourite shops at TheGivingMachine.

Please join our new giving community by visiting and join to support Our Lady & St Chad Catholic Academy; it’s quick and simple to sign up and start giving for free.

It really is as simple as that. Please ensure you don’t miss this opportunity to give while you are shopping and help spread the word to raise as much as we can from this amazing program. Your help will make a difference.

Many thanks for your support.

Dates for 2016

We are now a few weeks into 2016 and so much has happened already. Year 11 have received their Pre-Public Examination results and are working every evening towards their final GCSE examinations that will begin in 12 weeks’ time.

Paralympic Judo Player Ian Rose has visited school, giving inspirational speeches to some year groups about the importance of ‘never giving up’ and ‘practice makes progress’.

Congratulations to the Year 7 and 8 girls’ football team who represented Wolverhampton Wanderers in the regional competition last week.
There are a number of key dates I would like to draw your attention to:

Year 10 Parent Information Evening – Tuesday 19th January at 4:00pm in the Performing Arts Centre
This is an opportunity for the Academy to share essential information about exam preparation, forthcoming Pre-Public Examinations and issue revision guides.

Year 7 Resilience Day – Thursday 21st January 2016
This day teaches Year 7 students the importance of resilience skills to secure success.

Year 10 Examination Week commences Monday 1st February to Friday 5th February 2016.
Pre-Public Examinations will be held in all subjects. It is essential that students are revising daily at home in preparation for these important examinations.

Year 8 Resilience Day – Thursday 4th February 2016
This day will focus on the importance of making positive choices in readiness for Year 8 students making key decisions about which subjects to study at GCSE level.

Year 11 Reports to Parents – Thursday 4th February 2016
Formal reports on each student’s performance in every subject will be issued to parents and students.

Year 11 Parents’ Evening – Thursday 11th February 2016
Parents of Year 11 students will be able to make an appointment to meet all of their child’s teachers and tutors between 4:30pm and 7:00pm.

HALF TERM – Monday 15th to Friday 19th February 2016

Ten Ten Theatre Group performing to Years 7, 8 and 9 – Monday 22nd February 2016
This is a Catholic Theatre group who address key concerns that some young people may experience.

Year 8 Pathways Evening – Wednesday 2nd March 2016
Year 8 students and their parents / carers will have the opportunity to speak to all curriculum areas and begin to consider the most appropriate subjects to study at GCSE level.

Year 7 and 8 Review Day – Monday 7th March 2016
During this day, Post-16 students will continue with normal lessons. Other year groups will not be in school at this time, but will be set work to be completed at home. Year 7 and 8 students will receive a letter with an appointment time to meet a member of staff to discuss their progress during this day.

Year 11 Photographs – Wednesday 16th March

Year 10 Reports to Parents – Thursday 17th March

Year 9 Resilience Day – Wednesday 23rd March 2016
During this day, Year 9 will learn study skills to support their ongoing revision for their GCSE examinations.

Year 10 and Post-16 Parents’ Evening – Wednesday 23rd March 2016
Parents of Year 10 and Post-16 students will be able to make an appointment to meet all of their teachers and tutors between 4:30pm – 7:00pm.

BREAK UP FOR EASTER – Thursday 24th March 2016

STAFF TRAINING DAY – Monday 11th April 2016

Students Return from Easter Break – Tuesday 12th April 2016

Information Evening

Year 10 are now one year away from completing their GCSE examinations. At a time when an increasing amount of the GCSE content is similar to AS Level, it is essential that all Year 10 students are revising at home to secure their very best grades in readiness for Year 11. Your son/daughter has Pre-Public Examinations during the weeks beginning 1st February and 9th February 2016 and have probably already begun to prepare for these at home.

The Academy would like to invite all parents/carers to attend an Information Evening on Tuesday 19th January 2016 at 4:00pm in the Performing Arts Centre at Our Lady and St Chad Catholic Academy.

During this evening, the Academy will:

  • Update parents on assessment methods
  • Provide revision resources for all attendees
  • Share Parental/Carer Communication methods

Strategic Leaders and the Year 10 Team will also be available should you wish to discuss anything further with us.

ParentPay – An easier way to pay

We have recently introduced an easy and convenient service allowing parents and guardians to make payments direct to school via a secure web portal operated by The facility enables payments to be made on-line via debit or credit card or by a PayPoint card at various retail outlets.

By offering a greater choice of payment methods, our aim is not only to make it more convenient to make payments to school, it will also to help us reduce the risks associated with cash being carried to school by pupils.

We are currently in the process of phasing in this service and letters are being sent out to parents and guardians over the next few weeks with details of how to enrol.

Please keep a look out for your letter as this will contain a unique username and password that will enable you to activate your account. If you need assistance when you receive your letter, our friendly finance staff can be contacted on 01902 551589 and will be happy to help you get started.