As we approach the end of the second week of term I am pleased to start this bulletin with an update on our online learning provision as well as important updates linked to Year 11.
Online Learning Updates
Please find attached to this bulletin the updated AHS Home Learning Offer in what I hope is a user friendly document. I am pleased to let families know that from next week I have asked all form tutors to introduce once a week in the allocated afternoon form time slot a form time Google Meet. We feel that the chance to interact with others in their form group is an important next step in terms of supporting student well-being. Please make sure that your children watch out for their invitations via their google classroom early next week!
AHS Home Learning Offer – 2021 – UPDATED
Year 9 blended learning to include ‘live teaching’
As we continue to develop our online learning provision, we are pleased to confirm plans to expand ‘live’ teaching to some Year 9 lessons, from next week. Mr Avery has written to all parents today with more detail regarding both the rationale for this and the way it will be delivered, but we are confident that this represents an opportunity that will be fully embraced by students. We are acutely aware that Year 9 are in an important stage of their school journey, transitioning to becoming GCSE students and laying the foundations for their future academic success. With this in mind we feel it is important that we aid the students in continuing to make progress in their subjects, and feel introducing an element of live teaching offers them an excellent opportunity to do so. It will also present the students a better opportunity to stick to school routines and their academic timetable, which will be so important in the long term.
Correspondence from Mr Avery also includes a guide as to how students can access their live lessons, this is a simple step in Google Classrooms, where the work will be available as usual. Below, please find details of subjects that will begin live teaching next week and subjects that will begin live delivery the week after:
Health & Social Care
Modern Foreign Languages
For subjects starting their live teaching from week commencing 25th January, narrated resources will be available as usual next week, with the teacher on hand to support students and answer any questions. We will keep this provision under review but hope that as we move forward Year 9 will benefit from a blended approach of both high quality narrated resources supported by teacher input and live lessons from their teachers.
In terms of Year 7 and 8 we continue to receive excellent feedback and for now we will continue with the approach of lessons being delivered through fully narrated pre-recorded lesson supported by teachers being available throughout every timetabled lesson to answer questions, via Google Classroom. This means that a student always has access to their subject teacher to ask question or receive further guidance. We will review this provision at the end of the week beginning 25th January and consider how we progress after this point.
As for Year 10 to Year 13 live teaching, we would ask that, where possible, students have their cameras on as they enter the lesson as part of our safeguarding arrangements.
Tomorrow evening we will be asking families to complete a short survey in terms of our online provision.
Year 11 Updates
We have waited patiently for updates from the DFE and are now in a position to inform families of the following:
- We have had confirmation from the DFE and Pearson today that the BTEC examinations planned for February and March will be cancelled (as a school we had already made that decision). Students will continue their live lessons and instead focus on their assignment work. We are pleased to have this clarity from the DFE and confident that it will not disadvantage our students in any of their BTEC subjects.
- As you know, the Department for Education have already made clear that the Summer 2021 GCSE exams will not go ahead. Linked to this, the DFE have now opened a consultation period on how teacher assessment will be carried out for GCSE and BTEC in the Summer. At the moment, they are considering a number of options, including moderation of student work, some in-class assessment or a ‘portfolio’ of work. The DFE will not currently offer any more information regarding how GCSE grades will be awarded, but as soon as they do we will let parents and students know. What we do know is that we will continue to deliver our planned programme of study across the GCSE subjects, students need to continue to work hard, attend their online lessons and focus on making progress between now and the Summer. We are confident that if students choose to engage positively with our online learning offer they will continue to make good progress towards their target grades.
Year 11 Mock Results and Parents Evening
- We are in the fortunate position of having completed our Y11 mocks prior to lock down. These grades will give students a clear indication of where they are currently working and what they need to focus on to make progress between now and the Summer. Mock results will be posted home to parents and students next week and should arrive no later than Friday 22nd A letter detailing how these grades have been awarded will accompany the results, which are an indication of students’ current position, not a prediction of what they will achieve in the summer GCSE and BTEC results. We would expect (as in every year) all students to make progress between the mock results and the summer.
- Year 11 parent’s evening will follow mock results and will take place on Wednesday 3rd We are currently developing plans to allow this to take place remotely and ensure that every student has the opportunity to have in-depth conversations with their subject teacher about their next steps and how to continue making progress in each subject. We will provide further details next week regarding the logistics of the parent’s evening, but ask that in the meantime parents make a note of the planned date.
As always, the Year 11 Team remain very proud of the students and their efforts during lockdown and are confident that the mock results will provide a good starting point for further progress as we move towards the culmination of students’ GCSE and BTEC studies.
Have you listened to the ‘Happiness half hour’ on BBC sounds. 30 minutes of really practical ideas on improving your happiness: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/p0926ylz
Wellbeing poster of the day
Head of Year Update – It’s Miss Turvey and Y10 tonight…
May I take this opportunity to again thank you for your support; life at the chalk face, or Chromebook keyboard, is interesting, exhausting, discombobulating and exciting at the moment. Please continue to communicate with us, especially if your son or daughter has an appointment during normal school hours so we know not to phone you and ask where they are. You may well be receiving more than one phone call a day from school; the purpose of the calls is to support your child’s learning rather than to bother you
If the hardware your child is using is not adequate for the tasks set on the google classroom, please contact us about borrowing a Chromebook. 01904 411341 or email@example.com
If your internet connectivity is sluggish or intermittent, please contact your network provider and let them know you have a school age child.
If you would like to request extra mobile data, please click the link to register your details: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdAF9JDNHgSkW5a9LnPPhwNj0fgeTZg73XJhidw70v6Lr4w1A/viewform?usp=sf_link
If you would like a holiday to Barbados, then now is the right time of year to be going: wall to wall sunshine, very little rain and hurricane season hasn’t begun ~ if only we could all afford it and it was classed as essential travel!
The Y10 school day is as follows, and a massive thank you to those of you with children in different year groups at AHS or at different schools, I only have to manage me and I sometimes struggle with that, so for those of you who are juggling working from home or elsewhere, children at different schools, older or dependent relatives and attempting to stay reasonably physically, mentally and emotionally healthy please know that my “Clap for Heroes” this Thursday is for YOU.
8.30am drift in time ~ the Y10 classroom Meet Link will be open if any Y10 students want to pop in and say “hi”
8.45am Morning Registration ~ please register via the google classroom Y10 Classroom in the classwork section
8.50 – 9.50am Period 1
9.50 – 10.50am Period2
10.50 – 11.10am Break time ~ please encourage your young people to move away from the computer screen.
11.10 – 12.10pm Period 3
12.10 – 1.15pm Period 4
1.15 – 1.50pm Lunch ~ again, please try and encourage a move away from the computer screen
1.50 – 2.10pm PM registration: resources for this time period are in the Y10 Classroom under classwork BUT this may also be the time when your child’s form tutor has a Meet Link with them once a week.
2.10 – 3.00pm Period 5
3.00pm Home time. Yay! Turn the screens off and “get some exercise” to quote Blur.
For those of you who are wondering where you can go during Lockdown 3 then try checking out this website: https://pigletish.com/100-places-to-go-when-you-cant-leave-the-house/ And for those of you who love George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces check out number 97, if you can tear yourselves away from the pandas and puppies.
Stay in touch, stay safe and thank you. Miss T. 😊
Since we are now in the first full week of the Spring term our Form Tutor Collective Worship is entitle a Fresh Start. A new term and a new year bring with them new opportunities and the chance for a ‘fresh start’. The old term and the old year are behind us, so it is time to move on into the future.
Thursday – Every day is a fresh start. Wake up with a thankful heart. (Kristen Butler – Social media entrepreneur)