Dear Parents and Carers,
I would like to start this update by congratulating students on the extremely positive start they have made to the online learning that is in place for this half term. We are very pleased at the way the very vast majority of students have responded to this challenge and very much appreciate the help and support from parents with this. The arrangements for year groups are summarised below:
Years 10, 11, 12, 13:
- These students we will receive live online teaching in line with their normal timetable, it is the expectation that all students attend these lessons. The link for live lessons will be available via Google Classrooms. Instructions for conduct in online lessons will be made clear to students at the start of each lesson. Please note, as part of our safeguarding arrangements, we would ask wherever possible in live lessons that students have their cameras turned on.
Years 7, 8, 9:
- These students will access resources on Google Classrooms, included pre-recorded materials and narrated lessons. Teachers will be available online during each timetabled lesson to answer questions and support students. This was something that was utilised well yesterday.
A reminder of the expectations for each day are included below (these have been sent out previously and are also on the school website) but as ever If any children are struggling with devices to access online learning, please contact school so that we can support you, we have dedicated IT support available in school. You can do this by texting or emailing us at:
We will review these arrangements at the end of next week and as always seek to deliver education of the highest possible quality.
Guidance for students who are accessing remote learning from home
For the vast majority of students who are working from home, it is very important that they are following their school timetable and maintain routines, both for their own well-being and to ensure they remain ready for when they do return to school after half term. Students do this online using their Google Classroom.
Get prepared for your school day.
- Have breakfast
- Wash/brush your teeth
- Get dressed
- Prepare your working area
8.30 to 8.50am
Go to your Year groups classroom and join. You need to every day then:
- Complete the register for today, by clicking ‘Yes’.
- Read/do the ‘Head of Years’ notices.
- Complete the suggested Wellbeing Resources.
As you will be aware after yesterday our pastoral staff will be contacting any student who has not logged on and registered for the start of the school day. We will continue to do this each and every day to ensure that we are supporting all families to access learning.
8.50 to 3.10
Complete your lessons, following your normal school timetable and the normal school day times.
|Years 7, 9, 12 and 13||Years 8, 10 and 11|
|8.50 to 9.50:||Lesson 1||Lesson 1|
|9.50 to 11.10:||Break from 9.50 to 10.10|
Lesson 2 from 10.10 to 11.10
|Lesson 2 from 9.50 to 10.10|
Break from 10.50 to 11.10
|11.10 to 12.10:||Lesson 3||Lesson 3|
|12.10 to 1.50:||Lunch from 12.10 to 12.45|
Lesson 4 from 12.45 to 1.50
|Lesson 4 from 12.10 to 1.15|
Lunch from 1.15 to 1.50
|1.50 to 2.10:||Complete the PM registration for that day activity. This can be found in your Year group classroom.||Complete the PM registration for that day activity. This can be found in your Year group classroom.|
|2.10 to 3.10:||Lesson 5||Lesson 5|
|Wellbeing activities||Complete a Wellbeing activity to reward yourself for a hard day’s work.||Complete a Wellbeing activity to reward yourself for a hard day’s work.|
Guidance for students who are attending school
The government guidance is extremely clear that if at all possible students should remain at home and engage with their learning this way. However where this is not possible provision is available in school for students of front line critical worker families and those students who are vulnerable is some way. These students are working in IT classrooms and will access the work provided on Google Classroom in exactly the same way as those working at home. The conduct and effort of those students who were in school yesterday was exemplary. If you would like to request a place in school please do so via the electronic form that can be accessed either by the link below or via the school website.
All students must arrive at school between 8.30 and 8.45 as normal. Breakfast Club will be running as normal from 8.00. On arrival, students must go to:
|Year group||Location||Where must I wash my hands?||How do I get there|
|7||English block (BS1 and BS2)||Outside the English Block|
|8||IT4 and IT5||Your usual handwashing area||Via the stairs by Art and along the Humanities corridor|
|9||IT1 and IT2||Your usual handwashing area||Black Square|
|10||Yr7 Library||In Black Square||Black Square|
|6th Form||6th Form Library||Outside the 6th Form|
Minimising the risks
We would ask that all students who are in school follow the schools ‘Code of Responsibility’ (as normal), ensuring that:
- If you have symptoms, you stay home and get tested
- Socially distance. Stay 2 metres wherever you can
- Clean hands
- Catch it, Bin it, Kill it
- Wear a face covering
- Outside of school – stay safe
Look after your Wellbeing
By following the school day and keeping to normal routines as best as possible students are starting to look after your own Wellbeing. Further information on effective ‘#Selfcare’ principles can be found in the helpful document attached.
Students can also access Kooth, which is an online wellbeing community and can either be downloaded free of charge as an App or can be accessed through the website (https://www.kooth.com) – everything is heavily monitored to ensure the safety of all young people. It has a variety of different functions which young people can choose to access from discussion boards and magazines which are written by young people, to personal goal setting, journals and mood tracking features. There is also the opportunity to speak anonymously to speak to trained professionals about anything that may be bothering them however big or small. This fantastic video explains how the online community works click to watch the video. Kooth is designed for young people but their company website (https://www.koothplc.com) provides information for parents/carers and has a facility to ask any questions.
In addition well-being resources are available online for each year group and families should not hesitate to contact their Head of Year or Pastoral Support worker if they need any further assistance.
Free School Meals
I am pleased to inform families that supermarket vouchers will continue to be provided for families who access Free School Meals. This will be done with immediate effect and distributed in the same way as during the previous lockdown. For the small number of students in school who are eligible for Free School Meals money will automatically be added to their accounts as normal. Again if you have any questions or need further support please contact reception who will be happy to help.
Head of Year Updates
We have decided that we will include an update from one Head of Year each day of the week rather than include them all in the weekend bulletin for families. Today we have the latest update from Mr Avery and Miss Clarke who lead Year 9:
The schools may have shut but as ever we soldier on, trying to give the best possible education to our students regardless of the circumstances. The timing of this most recent lockdown was disappointing for many reasons, but particularly for year 9 who were beginning to adapt to the demands of GCSE and making significant progress. Despite this most recent set back, I feel the students in Year 9 are in a far better position now than when lockdown was first upon us last summer. The students are far more comfortable using google classroom, having become used to the platform while completing homework over the course of the year. The students of year 9 will benefit from the teacher narrations that accompany the lessons. We are hoping this allows students to overcome any barriers to their learning, and provide more clarity from the teacher about what they should be doing. Finally, we are offering the students the opportunity to contact their teacher to ask for further assistance with their work, with teachers at their desks during the hour of the lesson to answer any question a student may have. By offering all of these measures, we are hoping to make life and home learning a little easier on the students (and also the parents!).
I would like to take this opportunity to remind parents that the students of year 9 are expected to register each morning by 8:50am. They can do this simply by clicking ‘yes’ on their year group classroom. This is to inform us that they are ready to go with their learning, and will also allow them to follow their school timetable and access the teacher assistance I highlighted earlier. It’s also very important that we keep the students in good routines, which will allow for their transition to be much smoother when school re opens and students return. Through the year group classroom students can also access important materials I will share with them, such as key messages, acts of collective worship and the all important wellbeing resources.
I reserve my final messages for the students of year 9, who I could not be more proud of. Whether you are in school as children of key workers, or working at home, I have been really impressed with how you have adapted to the online learning platform today. To say you have been resilient in trying circumstances would be an understatement, and I often think we can learn a great deal from you all. As Tolstoy said in War and Peace “The two most powerful warriors are patience and time”, and I promise we will see a return to normality soon. In the meantime, it’s important you take care of yourselves both mentally and physically, so please make sure you are taking regular breaks and exercising as often as you can. As always, myself and Miss Clark are here if you need us – all you need do is ask!
I look forward to speaking to a number of parents over the coming weeks, but in the meantime if you would like to enquire further about any of the systems we have in place, please feel free to contact me on email@example.com
This week our Form Tutor Collective Worship focuses on the question of How can we have Hope for tomorrow? This is especially relevant as not all students return in person to school this week. The Biblical story of Jesus healing the woman with severe bleeding enables us to look at how for some people hope for the future can come from faith.
Thought for the day
“Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.” – Archbishop Desmond Tutu
I hope all students have another safe and productive day of learning and I will be in touch again tomorrow.