The day we welcomed our own olympian back to Cantell!

We had a member of our Cantell family return to visit us yesterday, Mahamed Mahamed. You may have watched him recently at the London Marathon, where he finished 4th with a personal best of 2:07.05. He has also been selected to compete in the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris. He met with our current students where he gave advice and inspired them to pursue their own goals with determination and resilience. Coverage of his visit was featured on BBC South today yesterday, thank you @BBCSouthNews

We are are proud of you Mahamed, and we can’t wait to cheer you on later this year in Paris 2024!

#cantellandproud #inspirational #ohtheplacesyouwillgo

Autumn Term Highlights

Easter Holiday already and what a jam-packed term it has been.

We have been hosts for the wonderful students and staff from Wuxi Foreign Language School as part of Global Exchanges, which was a huge success and such an enlightening experience for all involved.

Plenty of school visits including, Travel and Tourism students going to Hilton Ageas, Art Gallery Visit, Kew Gardens, Oxford, St Johns College, Whitchurch Silk Mill, CEMAST workshop to name a few.

We had a very successful Future Focus Options event and Careers week, which saw a large number of external companies coming in to school and offering students advise on different colleges and employers, transition processes, career opportunities that are available and paths they can take to get there.

Numerous Hot Chocolate and Pizza rewards, recognising students and their effort.

We were treated to the in school production of Oliver which saw a packed house and with glowing reviews, students involved were so happy to be able to express their love for performing whilst gaining confidence and meeting new friends. 

We saw many wonderful characters for World Book Day! Celebrating reading and all the benefits it brings.

We’ve had the SEND Parent information evening,  Maths Feast, National Reading Champions Quiz and Natwest Dream Bigger Workshop and this week we had the Coffee and Cake Transition Evening, welcoming students who will be joining us in September.

We bring our Autumn Term to an end today with a Peace and Humanity Non school Uniform Day, fundraising for the British Red Cross who support those in need. With various stalls running throughout the day; ‘Throw a sponge at Mr Kutty’, ‘Halal Cake Sale’, ‘Henna Studio’ and ‘Peace Bracelet stall’

Children were also gifted an Easter Egg coutesy of The Big Difference Charity whos heartwarming mission is to provide every child in Southampton with delicious Swiss Chocolate eggs.

Which leaves us to say, from all of us,

best wishes and have a wonderful Easter break!

For any Aspiring Performers!

Here at the school we have just witnessed amateur acting at it’s best, with our in house production of Oliver. 

Do you have any young people who would like to take the first steps, gain confidence, meet new friends and express themselves.

Why not give Artisan a try!

Booking required.


Careers Week – Inspiring Young Minds!

Inspired, Curious and Optimistic, a few of the words used to describe the impact of this weeks Careers Event.

We at Cantell, have been so grateful to have had the chance to again work together with Carey Moore,  Natwest and his colleagues.

We have been so privileged to have had so many employers present to our students either face to face or virtually.

Students have learnt about different colleges and employers, transition processes, career opportunities that are available and paths they can take to get there.

As well as having advice on the importance of growth mindset, transferable skills and how to pursue aspirations.

A hugely successful week which we hope will positively impact our students to lead happy and successful lifes.

With thanks to Mr Paterson, Mr Godwin here at the school and Mairead Taylor from Natwest for their help in organising this event and for all those involved.

Thanks to all the business that have engaged with our students this week

Highfield Professional Services

Fat Face

Trant Engineering

The South Hampshire College group

The Royal Navy

Peter Cooper Group

Barton Peveril


Trethowans and KPMG

We Are Futures

Richard Tauntons

Itchen College   

What a fantastic day celebrating reading in all it’s glory. Staff and students got creative with some truly wondrous costumes highlighting their favourite reads.

Some of the reasons why we celebrate World Book Day?

  • Children who own a book are three times more likely to read above age expected level
  • There is a strong correlation between regular reading for pleasure and mental wellbeing
  • Reading improves a child’s empathy skills

What book have you enjoyed reading?  This is what some of our students said during World Book Day Yesterday,

Sanka, year 10 enjoys Macbeth “I find reading peaceful, a way to escape and enjoy learning”

Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman “I like reading because you can escape to a different world” Ez, year 9

Good Omens by Jane Eyre “Reading expands your horizons, allowing you to understand different opinions and become well-rounded.” Rebecca, year 11

Tom, year 10 enjoyed Entangled Life “I find reading calms me down and helps me relax and night, I also find reading fun”

The mission is simple:

To promote reading for pleasure, offering every child and young person the opportunity to have a book of their own.

We love celebrating World Book Day as we recognise that strong literacy improves life chances and reading is a fundamental skill that all of our students need. World Book Day is a great opportunity to share our love of reading with lots of fun activities and dressing up. 

We hope everyone enjoys World Book Day 2024. Miss Sheath, Assistant Headteacher

There’s also a great Einstein quote that we have on our library doors:

“The only thing that you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library,” – Albert Einstein.

It’s nearly showtime!

In the early days of September, the auditions for Oliver! marked the commencement of an exhilarating journey. The competition proved formidable, and deciding on the lead roles became a challenging task. Following intense callbacks, our definitive cast emerged.

The real excitement unfolded during the subsequent weeks – with rehearsals for songs, dances, and acting conducted twice a week. Remarkably, some of our talented year 11 students assumed the responsibility of dance choreography for Oliver!, leading the dance rehearsals with exceptional skill. The infectious tune of “Food Glorious Food” echoed through the corridors, and students left rehearsals, merrily singing down the streets.

As we approach the culmination of this remarkable journey, with show nights looming less than two weeks away, a sense of pride envelops us. Reflecting on the progress made since September, we are profoundly proud of the entire cast. Anticipation is building, and we eagerly await the opening night on Tuesday, 5th March.

‘I am excited about Oliver because there is lots of acting which I enjoy a lot. It also involves lots if singing and dancing and I got to do this with my friends. Oliver rehearsals have brought me closer to my friends and I have also made new friends from the experience. I have also enjoyed working with people I don’t normally. It has given me more confidence with my acting and singing’ – Lucas Worthington – Mr Bumble.


During January we have been having lessons with KS3 and an assembly for KS4 to talk about how to use AI to help their learning, whilst making sure to avoid using AI to do too much for them.

“We want our students to be responsible citizens and we do this by educating them and giving them information so that they can make informed decisions. AI is part of our lives and, therefore, it is our responsibility to educate ourselves and our community to ensure we can use it to enhance our lives and give our students the digital literacy skills that will be in high demand now and in the future” Miss Sheath

What is AI? 

AI, or Artificial Intelligence, is like having a really smart computer that can learn and understand things, just like humans do. There are different types of AI, and two of them are large language models and image generating AI. Large language models (LLMs) are like smart writers. They use pre-existing information from the internet to help them answer questions and write stories, but they don’t actually create new ideas on their own. They are really good at organising and using the information that already exists. However, they can’t check if something makes sense compared to reality, and they can make up facts. As an example of other forms of AI, Image generating AI is like a digital artist. It can create pictures that look real, even though they are made by a computer. But just like the language models, it doesn’t come up with completely new ideas. It uses a lot of pictures that already exist to figure out how to make new ones. So, even though AI is very clever, it still needs humans to give it ideas and information to work with.

Chinese Exchange – With open arms and open minds

As they come to the end of their second week with us, it is clear that all students and staff alike have fully embraced having our wonderful visitors here from Wuxi Foreign Language School as part of Global School Exchanges. 

Our student visitors have taken on board the Cantell Cs (Courtesy, Co-operation, Commitment, Creativity and Challenge) and, along with their student buddy have challenged themselves and tried new things and supported each other with kindness, patience and understanding.  

With students stating they have found the experience to be 

 “Refreshing” “Eye opening” “Enlightening” “Wonderful” “Fun” “Cultural Experience” “Great” 

Dr Barnes, Coordinator, Cantell said “this has been INCREDIBLE” what an opportunity for all of the students involved to learn more about each other’s cultures and to share their experiences.  The programme is certainly expanding our horizons and I am excited to see where things go next.” 

Yi Huang, Director of the College Guidance Office said “Cantell School has provided our students with a rich array of engaging courses, in addition to the core curriculum, the school offers various extracurricular activities, ranging from Aerial Fitness, Golf to Dance and Arts. This diverse set of options ensures that students have the opportunity to develop comprehensively. 

The pleasant and relaxed environment at Cantell School has allowed our students to immerse themselves in a truly authentic British educational experience. It encourages them to step out of their comfort zones, try new things, and foster the courage to interact with peers from different countries. This setting not only enhances their language skills but also promotes personal growth” 

Lewis Bevil, Programme Lead, Global School Exchanges added “It has been such a pleasure to witness the students from Wuxi Foreign Language School develop their knowledge of English and their understanding of British culture. All the students and staff at Cantell school have been so warm and welcoming to us, which has enabled us to be able to provide the best experience possible for our students on the programme. At Global School Exchanges, we are looking to continue to provide memorable experiences to students from China to facilitate further successful cultural exchanges for many years to come” 

We hope that they continue to enjoy their time with us and that this will lead to future collaborations. 

Here is a video summarising their first two weeks with us:

A great start to the new term!

It has been a great start to the term with students back in lessons, working hard and attentive.

As we start the new year our Year 11’s are concentrating hard on their exam preparation. We are also providing extra opportunities for revision sessions. The English revision sessions will be held on Saturday 13th January and Saturday 20th January, students should ask their English teachers for more information.

We also pride ourselves on providing fantastic extra-curricular opportunities and the new PE extra-curricular timetable has been put onto facebook today. If your youngster is interested in any of our amazing clubs, they can find out information and sign up for them on Edulink.

The Languages Faculty have some exciting trips and visits planned this year.  Don’t miss out on your place on our Spanish Exchange 2024 – a fantastic opportunity for our Year 9 and Year 10 students to experience the language and culture of Spain. For more information, please contact

It has been such a positive start to the term, and we look forward to keeping you up to date via our regular blog posts.