Principal’s Blog – 4th March 2016

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Sweet Charity

On Monday 29th February it gave me great pleasure to present Cancer Research UK with a cheque for £857.28. The charity was represented by Lynne Desborough who explained the work of the charity to the Student Council and how the donation will help in the fight against cancer. The college raised nearly £2,000 for charity before Christmas and it shows how generous and caring our students are when it comes to helping others.

World Book Day

Thursday March 3rd was World Book Day. World Book Day is a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading. In fact, it’s the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world. As ever, Minsthorpe marked the day with both staff and students dressing up as their favourite literary characters. The main aim of the day is to encourage children to experience the pleasures of reading a book so staff read excerpts from Chemistry by Graham Swift, in instalments, throughout the day to show students how a good story can hook the reader. The poignant tale depicts things that we can all relate to – family relationships, change, love and loss. Why not discuss the text (and its themes) with your child?

The Minsthorpe Biomassive!

Over the summer the college replaced its old, coal-fired boilers with a start-of-the-art biomass system. Biomass is biological material derived from living (or recently living) organisms. The vital difference between biomass and fossil fuels is one of time scale. Biomass takes carbon out of the atmosphere while it is growing, and returns it as it is burned. Fossil fuels take millions of years to form and cannot be replaced. Managed on a sustainable basis, biomass is harvested as part of a constantly replenished crop either during woodland or arboriculture management (such as coppicing) or as part of a continuous programme of replanting, thus taking up CO2 from the atmosphere at the same time as it is released by the combustion of the previous harvest. This allows the college to reduce its carbon footprint and switch from the use of dirty fossil fuels. On Friday March 4th to tie in with World Wildlife Day, 55 student volunteers from the college got together as part of our STEM programme to look at the issues concerning sustainability and the part that biomass can play in providing greener power for the future.

Ray Henshaw
Principal