Welcome from Head of Year 9, Mr Duffy
My name is Mr Duffy and I am Head of Year 9 at Harris Academy Sutton, as well as teaching Music and Performing Arts. I have been teaching for 14 years and have always been involved in pastoral care. I was Head of Music in two schools for 8 years, and I have been a Head of Year for the past five. My aim is to ensure that every student in the Year Group has a fantastic time at school, gets the best grades in their GCSEs and A-Levels and leaves us able to go on and lead a happy, successful and fulfilling life.
It has been wonderful to have been with the Year Group right from their very first day at the academy. I remember speaking to them on that first morning and telling them the two values I wanted the Year Group to live by. These were to try their very hardest at everything that they do, and to treat everyone with kindness and respect. It is fantastic to see them embodying these values every day and it is great to see them becoming thoughtful and conscientious young adults.
It is also extremely important to me that everyone in the Year Group is free to be exactly who they are, and that everyone is accepted for being themselves. We celebrate diversity and individuality within the Year Group. We encourage students to see what they have in common with each other, rather than what is different.
I also love hearing about all of the incredible things the Year Group achieve outside of school. We have some incredibly talented sports people, dancers, actors, artists and musicians to name but a few. I think it is hugely important for each student to have something outside of school that they are passionate about. This doesn’t stop when they leave school either – I love running and will do a run most nights after work as my way of relaxing.
In the Year 9 Personal Development Curriculum we look at challenging, but essential topics to equip them with the skills and knowledge they will need when they go out into the world. We look at topics such as consent, morality, how government works, the world of work and key safeguarding issues such as peer-on-peer abuse, knife crime and sexual harassment. It is wonderful to see the students engaging in deep, thoughtful and mature discussions on these topics.
One of the biggest parts of my role is to look after the wellbeing of all the students in the Year Group. If any student has any issue at all I would urge them to come and speak to me and we can put in place relevant support. We have an amazing set of professionals in our Wellbeing Team who can provide bespoke support to our students, as well as external experts in specific areas. We also provide academic intervention to students when appropriate.
I am incredibly proud to be the Head of Year to such a fantastic group of students. I am always so impressed with their effort, dedication, humour and spirit. It is a real honour to get to work with them and see them develop into the wonderful young adults they are becoming.
What is it like to be a Year 9 at HASU?
Year 9 is a pivotal year for our students, as this is the year that they select the subjects that they will study in Years 10 and 11. It is the biggest decision they will have taken in their education so far. They will be guided at every turn by their Form Tutor, their subject teacher, myself and the Academy Leadership Team. We put in place a huge number of events to help support them in this decision, such as an IID Day where they get to have taster sessions of lots of different subjects. We also have an Options Fair where they get to discuss each subject in detail with their teachers. They also have one-to-one meetings with senior staff in order to help them make the best decisions for them as individuals.
By the time they get to Year 9 the students are well established in the school and serve as fantastic role models for our younger students. They also get to try a number of new and exciting opportunities, such as the Duke of Edinburgh Award. We encourage our students to make the most of every opportunity that comes their way, to try new things and to be the best possible version of themselves.
What are the events and occasions we can expect during Year 9?
Options Process Launched
Year 9 Mid Year Assessments
|Spring 1||Options Decision Made|
|Spring 2||Year 9 Parents Evening|
Year 9 End of Year Assessments