News from Mr Ramsey

Duke of Edinburgh

I received a letter this week thanking Verulam for its participation in the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme.  This year 118 boys started the Bronze and Silver awards.   In the same year 69 boys completed Bronze, Silver or Gold awards.  Overall, this means boys completed 1144 hours of learning skill, 1521 hours of physical activity and 1274 hours of volunteering in their local community. This achievement puts us in the top 20 schools in Hertfordshire.  I would like to thank Mr Massey and all of his team for their exceptionally hard work this year and for sacrificing so much of their free time.

The benefits of participating in the DofE scheme cannot be overestimated as it builds character and resilience, whilst developing communication and team working skills.  It is no surprise that many of our most successful  students complete either the Silver or Bronze awards.  Their experiences puts them in an excellent position to secure places at first rate universities or prestigious apprenticeships.

So far 87 Year 9 boys have expresses an interest in completing the award and I would encourage any parents whose son has not expressed an interest to discuss the opportunity further with them.  However, if the commitment involved in the DofE award scheme appears daunting, pupils might consider opting for the National Citizenship Service scheme which can be undertaken in 3 to 4 weeks after GCSE examinations.

Any parents who wish to take up the DofE award can contact Mr Massey by emailing [email protected]

Uniform reform – September 2019

I would like to thank all those parents who contacted me with their views on our proposed changes to school uniform.  The overwhelming view was in favour of retaining summer uniform, which I am happy to agree.

We do wish to ensure that our pupils are among the best dressed in St Albans and we will, therefore, be rationalising uniform from September on the following lines:

School Uniform Year 7 -11

  • Navy Blue Blazer with badge
  • Black trousers of conventional cut (as some pupils currently wear grey trousers, these will be accepted until December)
  • White shirt (as a small minority of parents may have blue shirts these will be accepted until December)
  • House tie
  • School pullover or grey V-necked pullover
  • Black shoes – not trainers
  • Dark grey or black socks – white socks are not permitted

Summer Uniform

  • Pupils wear normal full school uniform OR a tailored short sleeve shirt with an embroidered Verulam badge.

No other combination will be acceptable – if pupils are not warm enough in summer shirts alone, they should wear full school uniform including a tie and blazer.  In the summer the 6th Form may dispense with Jackets and ties.

Mr P A Ramsey

Primary School STEM Workshops

Year 5 students from Maple School and St Peters schools joined Mrs Cornmell and Ms Howells for STEM workshops this week.

The students began by making Newton’s cradles with marbles and lollipop sticks.  The enthusiasm from students at both schools was infectious.  Mrs Cornmell really enjoyed explaining the mechanics behind why the cradles work and the careful measurements required to ensure the marbles were able to strike each other to pass on the momentum.  The students all listened carefully and their final models were absolutely outstanding.

The second part of each of the workshops was led by Ms Howells and saw the students making sparklers by dipping splints in glue and three different metals before lighting them in Bunsen burners.  The students were so excited to learn how sparklers are made and had a fantastic time holding the splints in the flames and watching them sparkle!

Both sessions ended with a spectacular chemistry display by Ms Howells.  The students learned how group 1 metals react with water (behind glass for safety).  The students were amazed by the different reactions (and the final explosion!)

We would like to thank Mrs Horn for all her help in preparing the materials for the sessions, our 6th form chemists for their help in the workshops and the students and staff of Maple and St Peter’s schools for their enthusiasm and hard work.

Mrs Cornmell and Ms Howells






Duke of Edinburgh

Following on from Mr Ramsey’s comments overleaf, we would encourage Year 10 pupils to sign up to the Silver Award.  All information regarding this was sent out via parent mail. Pupils can go directly into the Silver Award, skipping Bronze if they have changed their mind.

The physical, skill and volunteering sections are longer to reflect the missed level. Forms are due in next week and the expedition dates are 14th September and 17th October.

Mr T Massey

DoE Coordinator


For advice regarding gaining a place at Verulam School for your son via the Continuing Interest process, or for queries regarding appeals, please contact Ms K Bonass on 01727 754102 or [email protected]

Help and advice with Secondary Transfer 2019

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