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  • Summer 2019 Updates

    Published 20/05/19

    Dear Parent(s) / Person(s) with Parental Responsibility, 

    I am writing to remind you about some important dates for the Summer Term and thank you for your continued support of the school.

    GCSE Examinations

    GCSE examinations are taking place throughout May and June. Y11 students, parents and carers have received a separate letter outlining this year’s examination arrangements. Good luck to all of our Y11 students.

    Term dates

    Please make a note of the school term dates and holiday dates for the remainder of this school year.

    Summer half-term holiday - Monday 27 May to Friday 31 May 2019

    Summer holiday – Monday 22 July – Monday 3 September 2019

    Start of autumn term – Tuesday 3 September 2019

    On Friday 19 July 2019 students will be dismissed at 1.10pm to begin the summer holiday.

    Our term dates for 2019-2020 are on the school website >HERE< and the school app.


    The holy month of Ramadan has begun for Muslim students and members of staff. Ramadan is a period of prayer, increased religious devotion, self-reflection, self-control, charity-giving and expressing good will to others. It is a time of fasting and control over the need to eat and drink during daylight hours. As always, it will be a decision for families, parents and individual students whether they are of an age to fast, for how long they will fast and if they are legitimately exempt from fasting.

    Fasting can have an impact on the performance of students, especially during the long summer days. Please ensure your daughter is well prepared, ready and understands the likely effects on her body during fasting and that she manages these challenges well, by:

    • eating well, with a balanced meal (containing all food groups) when breaking the fast at the evening meal (iftar) and during the pre-dawn meal (suhur) and drinking plenty of re-hydrating fluids between iftar and suhur;
    • managing her sleep effectively;
    • planning ahead by organising herself and equipment needed for school to fit around prayers and other Ramadan specific practices.

    Eid is predicted to fall on Wednesday 5 June 2019 –school closure for this day will be confirmed via the school website once we know when Eid is being celebrated. The school will remain open for those students who are sitting an exam on that day.


    Please make sure your daughter attends school every-day during term-time to maximise her achievement.

    We have previously written to you to share the fact that on average students with high attendance achieve the highest results. The graph below shows that students who are at school between 97 and 100% of the time achieve on average a grade 7 for all of their exams. This figure reduces significantly as the attendance drops:


    The school cannot authorise any requests for holidays or trips abroad during term-time. Learning and teaching remains a priority at Sarah Bonnell throughout the summer term and it remains important that your daughter does not miss any of her lessons for unauthorised absences.


    Thank you to all parents and carers for encouraging their daughters to come to school wearing the correct uniform. It is fantastic to see students wearing the uniform with pride. As the warmer weather approaches this is to remind you that the school blazer remains a compulsory item of uniform throughout the year. A full list of our school uniform can be found on the website and can be purchased from our school uniform supplier:

    Ian Howard, 409 Barking Road, East Ham, London E6 2JT.  Tel. 020 8472 1729

    Please remember that you can keep up to date with everything that is going on at school through the Sarah Bonnell website.

    Yours sincerely,

    Rae Potter


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  • Sarah Bonnell School Wins National Award

    Published 02/04/19

    Sarah Bonnell School has been recognised nationally for its excellent results in 2018 based on data from theDepartment for Education and Ofsted, analysed by SSAT, the Schools, Students and Teachers network. Sarah Bonnell School was found to be among the best performing secondary schools in the country, receiving three awards for being in the top 20% of non-selective schools nationally for attainment and progress, and for achieving high levels of performance from pupils eligible for the pupil premium.

    The SSAT Educational Outcomes database compares all state-funded schools in England and the highest performing schools for a range of key measures are awarded SSAT Educational Outcomes Awards. Sarah Bonnell School will be presented with their award during the summer term at a ceremony attended by winners from across the region. Sue Williamson, Chief Executive of SSAT said:

    “I am delighted that Sarah Bonnell School has won three Educational Outcomes Awards. This recognises one important aspect of the school’s work but at SSAT we believe an outstanding school has deep social justice at the heart of its plan; it subjects that plan to constant challenge and innovation; and it liberates teachers to perform brilliantly in the classroom. SSAT is pleased to recognise the quality of leadership and the hard work of all staff to ensure the success of every child. A big thank you and well done to students, parents, staff and governors.”

    Headteacher, Rae Potter, said ‘ I am always proud of the success of students and staff at Sarah Bonnell School and am pleased that we have been recognised by the SSAT for our excellent GCSE results’’

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  • Headteacher's Weekly Message: 29th March 2019

    Published 02/04/19

    Headgirl gets the school saying thank you

    Aliyah Irabor-York, Headgirl, is working hard for her GCSE exams but this didn’t stop her from taking time to organise ‘Teacher Appreciation Week’ Aliyah showed great leadership skills to create a wonderful display to celebrate and recognise the great work staff at Sarah Bonnell do to support students and help them achieve. Aliyah also made sure that every member of staff was given a post-card with a message of thanks. Be Nice

    Year 11 students are working hard and aiming high

    Year 11 students are making us all proud with their excellent attitude to their final preparations for the GCSE exams. Students completed practice examinations and ‘walking/talking mocks’ in Maths last week and continue to be supported by staff in all the different curriculum areas. This week the real Drama GCSE examinations took place: the girls were buzzing after their performances and Ms Griffiths, Mr Bentley and Ms Jim were really pleased with the quality of their work.  Aim High

    Year 9 show their resilience and team work in Wales

    110 Year 9 students and 12 staff spent a brilliant week in the beautiful countryside in Aberdovey, Wales. This residential educational visit is planned in partnership with The Outward Bound Trust and gives young people the opportunity to hike, raft and canoe in a part of the country that many of them will have never seen before. Mr Begley, Assistant Headteacher, said the students gained a lot form the experience learning how to be resilient even when the going gets tough and learning how to work together as a team. Great skills for success at school and in the future. Be Proud

    Sarah Bonnell Prefects get leadership advice from Citi Bank professionals

    58 of our newly selected Year 10 Prefects visited Citi Bank on Wednesday 27 March to hear from leading professionals in the world of banking how to be an outstanding leader. The students were a real credit to the school and themselves and Senior Partner, Anthony Cockett, said he was impressed with the quality of the questions the girls asked him and his colleagues about leadership. Students learnt that leadership is about doing the right thing and doing it for the right reasons. I am confident that this group of prefects are going to maintain the high standards set by our current Prefect Team and will make a positive difference to our school community. No Excuses

    Sarah Bonnell get an insight into the STEM behind Thorpe Park

    Ms Sahebdin, Scholarship Coordinator, took a group of students to Thorpe Park to take part in workshops showing the science, technology, engineering and maths behind the pleasure park rides. I think we would all like to know whether this helped them enjoy the rides even more! Work Hard  

    Reading all about Feminism

    The Learning Hub now has a dedicated area for books about feminism, women’s history and women’s studies. As a girls school this provides students with a real opportunity to learn about issues linked to the social, political, cultural and economic advancement of women in Britain and across the world. The school is using money donated by the Sarah Bonnell Foundation to purchase a wide range of books to inspire students and develop their literacy skills and knowledge of the world.

    Rae Potter – Headteacher

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  • Headteacher's Weekly Message: 15th March 2019

    Published 18/03/19

    Sarah Bonnell was full STEAM ahead this week 

    Following on from the work we did last week to promote #BalanceforBetter as part of our International Women’s Day celebrations, this week we celebrated STEAM weak. Ms Adel, Curriculum Leader Business and Computing and Associate Senior Leader, coordinated a great programme of events to ensure Sarah Bonnell students were inspired to learn more about Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics.  On Tuesday Sarah Bonnell students competed against students from Lister in the Faraday Challenge Day.  On Friday Ms Davies, Curriculum Leader for Art, Design and Technology, showcased the links between science and art by creating a giant model of a Camera Obscura to explain the science behind the first cameras. 

     We also celebrated Pi Day on Thursday ( 3rd month, 14th Day being the first digits in Pi 3.14…) with some students and staff challenging themselves to recite up to 100 digits after the decimal point of this irrational number without looking! Students also made Pi bracelets using beads with numbers of them and took part in other activities linked to Pi. Huge thanks to the Maths team, led by Ms Boughton, for generating such a buzz in the Maths hall and for Mr Rahman for putting Pi on the floor of the Piazza. Aim High

    Sarah Bonnell Governors Conference

    On Saturday 9 March – governors came together to plan for next year. Sarah Bonnell is lucky to have a skilful, knowledgeable and supportive governing body who are willing to share both their expertise and time to support what we are doing to make Sarah Bonnell an ‘Outstanding’ school. Work Hard

    Sarah Bonnell Students Receive Silver Arts Award Accreditation

    After a lot of hard work and dedication, the following girls have successfully achieved their Silver Arts Award accreditation: Fahmida Akter Rahman, Yasmena Begum, Zehna Bodhee, Sharmin Chowdhury, Nehla Gazeeb, Jasrah Hannan, Rumaysaa Mannan, Gabija Narbutyte, Jemma Nguyen and Mariam Sharaf. The external moderator who the students met was very impressed with their sculptures and sketchbooks. The students work is now proudly displayed in the Art area. Be Proud

    Sarah Bonnell go to the famous Globe Theatre

    On Tuesday Ms Griffiths, Curriculum Leader for Drama, provided a great opportunity for students to attend a theatre production at The Globe. The visit gave the students a real insight into the theatre and its history as well as giving them a great chance to see the Southbank of the Thames in some very windy conditions.

    Sarah Bonnell Staff show their commitment

    I am always blown away by the commitment of staff at Sarah Bonnell – each week my message is packed with details of extra-curricular opportunities that provide students here with a diverse range of experiences that help them develop their understanding of the world and the confidence to make a meaningful contribution to it. Well done Team SBS!  Be Proud

    Rae Potter - Headteacher

    Sarah Bonnell School

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  • Headteacher's Weekly Message: 8th March 2019

    Published 09/03/19

    Sarah Bonnell celebrates International Women’s Day 2019

    Sarah Bonnell students were inspired by politicians, dancers, engineers, rocket cars, rugby players, activists, entrepreneurs, spoken word poets, public speaking experts, lawyers, accountants, actors and jazz musicians in a wonderful day of celebration. Huge thanks to Ms Sangster, Deputy Headteacher for driving the whole event and championing the theme of # BalanceforBetter and all staff and volunteers who made today really special.

    In recent years’ greater parity between men and women has been achieved but there are still barriers to overcome at home, at work and in politics. International Women’s Day was a great opportunity for us all to pledge to continue to work for a better world for all where people can achieve without discrimination. Be Proud and No Excuses

    The Great Gatsby comes to Sarah Bonnell on World Book Day 2019

    Students and staff got in to the spirit of World Book Day by dressing up as characters from their favourite book. Ms Kaur and Nyene transformed the Learning Hub with displays, activities and performances to create the atmosphere of 1920’s USA – the setting for Scott Fitzgerald’s famous novel The Great Gatsby. The atmosphere in the Learning Hub was brilliant and I know students enjoyed finding out about the Wall Street Crash, Bloomingdales and the extravagant lifestyle of some of the key characters in the book. Special thanks to Ms Kaur for creating another successful World Book Day extravaganza and for inspiring the students to read.

    Next week is STEAM week – all students are invited to get involved

    At Sarah Bonnell our curriculum is so much more than lessons alone and next week there are more opportunities for learning with a range of great workshops, lectures and events at lunch-time to further inspire students to learn about Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics.

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  • Headteacher's Weekly Message: 1st March 2019

    Published 01/03/19

    Every Pathway Leads to Success – Aim High Year 9

    On Wednesday we held the Year 9 Pathways Evening to share information with students and parents about the GCSE Curriculum Pathways on offer at Sarah Bonnell. Each Curriculum Pathway is named after a famous woman and provides a range of different subjects and qualifications for students to study.

    There was a great atmosphere in the Piazza, Assembly Hall and Learning Hub and parents said the conversations they had with staff were helpful and informative.   Aim High

    Sarah Bonnell take to the ski slopes of Austria

    Our first ever ski trip was a huge success with students making great progress with their ski skills and enjoying the beautiful Austrian slopes. Aliyah Irabor-York, Headgirl, tweeted ‘Thank you for the best experience ever………. this truly was an incredible trip- unforgettable. An even bigger thank you to Mr Archer and Ms Clark for absolutely everything, you both have been amazing!’

    But I think the pictures speak for themselves.








    Sarah Bonnell will start planning ‘Ski 2020’ soon – speak to Mr Archer, Assistant Headteacher to find out more.  No Excuses    

    International Women’s Day – Friday 8 March 2019


    Once again Sarah Bonnell will be putting on an evening of celebration for International Women’s Day. Put the date in your diary and get tickets for you and your daughter to celebrate with us on Friday 8 March 2019 from 5:30pm to 7:00 pm. Hope to see you there!

    Rae Potter – Headteacher 

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  • International Women's Day

    Published 27/02/19


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  • Headteacher's Weekly Message: 15th February 2019

    Published 19/02/19

    Extended Learning Day February 2019

    On Tuesday staff at Sarah Bonnell arranged a wide range ofbrilliant opportunities for students to learn and experience things beyond the normal curriculum. For example, students in Year 10 went on Careers Insight Visits to places like Davis Polk Law firm where they found out what it means to be a lawyer and the qualifications required to be successful in this profession. History students went on a walking tour of East London to learn about crime and punishment in Victorian England. Music students created a song they are going to enter for a national competition composing and performing all the music and writing, singing and rapping the lyrics in French. Students in Year 7 took part in Safer Internet Day activities led by our brilliant Year 10 Digital Leaders and Year 11 had some workshops on Relationships and Sex Education.  ELD visits and workshops are an important part of the Sarah Bonnell curriculum because they give students access to educational visits, guest speakers and a chance to immerse themselves in one topic for a whole day. Aim High 

    Sarah Bonnell mark LGBTQ month  

    The Sarah Bonnell Way begins with ‘Be Proud’ and one of the bullet points under this heading reads ‘We are proud of ourselves, our heritage and the school community’. I think this part of the school motto sits in line with the principles behind national LGBTQ month which remind us all of the importance of recognising, celebrating and being proud of the things that make us individuals in our own right including our gender identity. Be Proud

    Sarah Bonnell take to the ski slopes of Austria

    Our first ever ski trip set off today on their coach journey through France to the Austrian Alps. Mr Archer, Assistant Headteacher and Ms Clark, Deputy Headteacher have organised this opportunity to give students a chance to develop team work and communication skills as well learn an exciting new sport in a beautiful geographical landscape. Ski Safe and Ski Happy Sarah Bonnell  

    International Women’s Day – it’s getting closer! 

    Once again Sarah Bonnell will be putting on an evening of celebration for International Women’s Day. Put the date in your diary and get tickets for you and your daughter to celebrate with us on Friday 8 March 2019 from 5:30pm to 7:00 pm. 

    Rae Potter – Headteacher  


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  • Headteacher's Weekly Message: 8th February 2019

    Published 11/02/19

    Safer Internet Day – Digital Leaders impress 

    Our Digital Leaders had the amazing opportunity to present at the BT centre where a host of guest speakers and students were attending. The Digital leaders led the way showcasing their fantastic work and knowledge. Israa Ibrahim did an amazing job hosting the event, engaging the audience and welcoming ministers and CEO’s on stage. A huge well done to our digital leaders that attended the event.

    BBC News invite Sarah Bonnell students to interview the Chief Medical Officer

    Following on from their success at the Safer Internet Day event at BT, two of the Digital Leaders, Maariyah Ali and Israa Ibrahim, had a further opportunity to interview Professor Dame Sally Davies, the Chief Medical Officer, on how social media affects your mental health. This interview was for the BBC News and was aired on both the 6pm and 10pm news –you can still watch the report on BBC iplayer. The girls were totally confident, articulate and professional and were praised from BBC producers on their questioning skills. Be Proud

    Year 11 Parents, Teachers and students working together

    Year 11 students really have #Gotthis. On Wednesday it was great to see so many year 11 students at the Parents Evening. The evening began with a short welcome and introduction from Mr Archer, Assistant Headteacher, who spoke about the hard work the students have been putting in to their lessons and exam preparation and shared news of our Year 11 Reward Scheme to keep motivation high over the next few months. The Reward Scheme involves students getting points for attending extra intervention and revision sessions and for showing high levels of participation and commitment to learning. The points relate to prizes like Prom Tickets, Leavers Hoody, Maths Calculators, Revision Guides and coaching sessions. The buzz of this successful event planned by Mr Archer, Assistant Headteacher, Ms Whitfield, Progress Leader and Ms Whitfield, Year Leader, has been evident in Year 11’s attitude to learning this week. I know we can keep working together to support and encourage students to get the success they deserve.  No Excuses

    Sarah Bonnell Geographers get in to Epping Forest

    On Thursday, Sarah Bonnell GCSE Geography students ventured in to Epping Forest to conduct filed research as part of their GCSE Geography course. This educational visit was planned to give the students practical experience to support their learning in class and will support their achievement in the GCSE examinations in June 2019. Work Hard

    Sarah Bonnell’s Headgirl 2019 is Israa Ibrahim

    On Thursday, after two weeks of creative and purposeful campaigning, the students and staff of Sarah Bonnell were able to go to the ballot box to vote for Sarah Bonnell’s Headgirl 2019. The turn-out was a strong 72% of the school electorate and I am delighted to announce that Israa was elected to this important position. The other candidates – Shukri, Jaden, Maariyah and Dorcas showed great integrity throughout their campaign and I am hopeful they will now stand for Deputy Head and Assistant Head position in the Student Leadership Team. Be Proud. 

    International Women Day – join us to celebrate

    Once again Sarah Bonnell will be putting on an evening of celebration for International Women’s Day. Put the date in your diary and get tickets for you and your daughter to celebrate with us on Friday 8 March 2019 from 5:30pm to 7:00 pm.

    Rae Potter – Headteacher 

    Sarah Bonnell School

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  • Headteacher's Weekly Message: 1st February 2019

    Published 04/02/19

    Creative Careers Event – Find your future

    On Wednesday 30 January 2019 the Art and Design department of Sarah Bonnell hosted our first Creative Careers event delivered in partnership with Bow Arts Consortium.  To start the event, we had keynote talks from Leyla Reynolds – Artistic Director of gla-dem magazine and Jessica Ashman who is a BAFTA award winning animation artist and arts educator. Students then had the opportunity to meet creative professionals from across a variety of art sectors and learn about the careers available. Parents and students were also able to speak to industry professionals including those working in the areas of Architecture, Interior Design, Design Innovation and many more. The feedback from the artists and designers visiting the school was fantastic with photographer ‘Skallywag Fox’ commenting that Sarah Bonnell students are ‘thoughtful, interested and polite’ as they talked to him about his powerful fashion photography and portraits. A highlight of the evening for me was listening to Janine Francois, a former Sarah Bonnell student herself, talk about her happy memories of school and describing the journey she had taken to become a pioneering lecturer at London College of Fashion and PhD student working for her doctorate. The feedback from parents and students was also excellent with students gaining knowledge about how to ‘Find their future in Creative Careers’ Aim High

    Sarah Bonnell reflects on Holocaust Memorial Day

    This annual event marks the national day to remember and learn from the Holocaust and subsequent genocides in Rwanda, Cambodia, Bosnia and Darfur. Students were involved in a variety of activities to remember what Holocaust survivors went through between 1942-1945. In changing times, it seems even more appropriate that we learn from the past in order to secure a peaceful future. Be Nice

    Newham Civil Society Youth Commission

    Ms Sangster (Deputy Headteacher) and Ms Clark (Deputy Headteacher) took 11 Year 8 students to the Newham Civil Society Youth Commission on Tuesday 31 January 2019. The students were exemplary and Ms Sangster said she was ‘incredibly proud’ of them. They contributed to important discussions about how to make our community safer and how to build better relationships with the police. Several people commented on what the girls had to say and how impressed they were with them. Be Proud

    Rae Potter – Headteacher 


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  • Half term Holiday Offer at the London Stadium

    Published 30/01/19


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  • Headteacher's Weekly Message: 25th January 2019

    Published 28/01/19

    Year 9 Tenner Challenge

    Our year 9 students have been involved in the fantastic Tenner Challenge across the last two weeks at lunchtime. The Tenner Challenge is an interactive programme that helps students to develop key employability skills including creativity, resilience and problem solving, whilst using real money to make as much profit as possible from the £10. The girls showed their creativity by making jewellery, canvases and recycled stationary. I was really impressed with their ideas and the students involved really enjoyed the challenge. The money raised will be donated to our school charity United World Schools. Be Proud

    Year 11 Practice GCSE Exams

    Year 11 have finished an intensive two weeks of Practice GCSE Exams. It’s been nice hearing students talk about feeling proud of the fact they’ve coped so well with the pressure and hearing them talk about feeling confident that they’ve done well. Staff look forward to sharing exam results at the Year 11 Parents Evening on Wednesday 6th February 2019. Work Hard

    Sarah Bonnell’s Creative Careers Event

    On Wednesday 30th January 2019 the Art and Design department will be hosting a Creative Careers event alongside Bow Arts. To start the event, we have Keynote talks from 5:20pm by Leyla Reynolds – Artistic Director of gla-dem magazine and Jessica Ashman who is a BAFTA award winning animation artist and arts educator. Students will then have the opportunity to meet creative professionals from across a variety of art sectors and learn about the careers available. Parents and students will be able to speak to industry professionals including those working in the areas of Architecture, Interior Design, Design Innovation and many more.  We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday from 5:15pm.  Aim High

    Rae Potter – Headteacher 

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