We have had a very successful first day of testing. This was supported by the mature efforts of the 738 students who came into school between 8am and 5pm and the efforts of the 23 members of staff and community volunteers involved each hour. Such an undertaking would not be possible without the school community working in partnership and I am grateful for these combined efforts. By the end of today everyone who has consented should have received their first test. I’ve included a reminder of the arrival slots below:

8am – 9am12GSw/12HGa/12Lv/12Nc
9am – 10am12Os/10LBr/10MPe/10RGi
10am – 11am10RMe/10Wa/10EMo/10IMa
11am – 12pm10JLi/10ERo/10BDu/10By
12pm -1pm8ABt/8Di/8JHe/8Pl
1pm – 2pm8KMd/8MDn/8MHe/8MLN
2pm – 3pm8NAm/8Pi/8WBn
3pm – 4pm9Gs/9Hu/9Kx/9Mb
4pm – 5pm

First Bus York – Returning to school
Please find below a copy of an email received about efforts to support a successful return to school next week:

I am getting in touch on behalf of First Bus – York.
We are looking forward to helping students get back to school. With the expected increase in passenger numbers we would like your help in promoting to students about the importance of wearing face coverings and maintaining social distance, whilst using our services.
Keeping all passengers safe is our priority, therefore we have appointed a dedicated team of Covid Marshalls. Covid Marshalls will be operating across bus services in York to ensure safety measures are followed and to provide information should it be required. They will be identifiable by their First Bus uniform.
We wanted to make you and your students aware of this before the 8th March to ensure the return to school is as smooth and safe as possible.
If you have any questions about our Covid safety measures or our Covid Marshalls, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Prior to Christmas, we were very pleased at the changes we made to our homework policy and the positive impact that Google Classroom was having, on the setting of homework for students in Years 9-11.  Indeed, the homework policy played a key role in having students in these year groups ready to make a smooth transition to online learning in January.  The whole-school homework policy is currently under review for September 2021, with the extension of Google Classroom homework in Years 7-8 a key consideration.   In the meantime, in order to support students and parents with the transition back to school, we are making the following changes to our homework policy, these will be in effect until Easter, at which point we will review and communicate any updates to parents and students.

Years 7- 9: No homework will be set for these year groups for until after the Easter holidays.  Whilst we are fully committed to the positive impact that homework can have on children and their progress, we would like to prioritise a successful return to school and student involvement in extra-curricular activities wherever possible, in lieu of homework for those initial three weeks.

Year 10- 11:  Homework will still be set for these year groups, but the whole school policy of a mandatory once a week homework for each subject will be temporarily suspended.  Instead, between 8 March and the Easter holidays, students will be set homework where it is necessary for them to make continued progress through their courses.  For some subjects, this might be every week.  For other subjects, this might be less frequent until the Easter holidays.  This will provide students with slightly more flexibility as they settle back into the routines of school and learning.

Extra-Curricular Music
All extra-curricular music sessions are running this week via zoom or google meet. Students should email their music teacher if they would like to be involved in any of them. Once they are added to the relevant google classroom they will receive an invite. This will be where we will post information and resources.

Soul/Jazz Band – Monday
Orchestra – Wednesday
Boys Aloud singing group – Wednesday
Year 7 Choir – Thursday
Music Tech Club – Thursday
Unity Choir – Friday

From Monday 8th March, we will resume the ‘live’ sessions in school in year group bubbles as before Christmas. Such extra-curricular opportunities will be really important for young people as they return to school.

Online AHS Spring Music Concert 
As we would normally be preparing for our annual AHS Musical Show around this time, I thought it would be wonderful if we could put together a video of performances and compositions from students in years 7-13 performing at home during this second ‘lockdown’ period.

Please send Mrs Morrison an audio and video version (landscape is preferable) of the performance and an audio recording from a composition if your son or daughter would like to be involved. It can be any style (it doesn’t have to be a song from a musical – although it could be) and any instrument, including voice. It should be no more than 3 minutes long. We would also like to include some student artwork/images to accompany the video recording so if there are any AHS artists who would like to be involved in this project, please send those to Mrs Morrison as well.

‘We Transfer’ is the best way to send a recording and very easy. Select the free option and you just need to enter Mrs Morrison’s email and your own email and add the file. The deadline is Friday 5th March.

Please contact Mrs Morrison for further information: Cmorrison@archbishopholgates.org

Music lessons
If any student is interested in having instrumental or singing lessons, please contact Mrs Morrison for further information as most tutors are continuing to teach online: Cmorrison@archbishopholgates.org

Head of Year update – Mr Arthur and Year 8
So we now finally have a date for the school reopening, and this week will be our last of Remote Learning. This is excellent news, and Mr Deamer and I cannot wait to welcome Year 8 back into school from 8th March. Of course, safety is our number one priority, and as Mr Daly has already outlined, we will be following government guidance to make sure the return to school is as safe as possible.

Here are some key points, some specific to Year 8, to consider with regards to the return to school…

  • The school will remain in bubbles for the time being – students will still wash their hands in the Year 8 social area first thing each morning, and follow the one-way system to their form rooms from 8:30am
  • Students MUST ensure they have a facemask when they arrive at school, and wear it for the entire duration that they are in the building. Students can only take their facemasks off when they are sat eating their food at lunch and break, or when they are outside on the school field. It is imperative that students follow these rules – students without a mask will be challenged and given an M code in their planner. Three M codes in a week will result in a Head of Year detention after school the following day
  • If your child in Year 8 has a medical reason that means they cannot wear a facemask, please provide school with medical evidence and they will be given a lanyard as a sign of their medical exception. If students do not have a lanyard, they will need to ensure they are wearing a face mask
  • Students must ensure they are in correct uniform on their return to school from 8th March, and they will be challenged on this if not. Uniform can be purchased online or in supermarkets, and Keal Teamwear in York is open from 10am-1pm as of today (1st March) for school ties and jumpers. If there is any problems regarding this, please do get in touch before 8th March and we will see if we can support.

Year 8’s stage of the AHS Journey relates to ‘Opportunities’, and we are hoping that these will open up more and more as time progresses. During this period of school closure, we have been running extra-curricular activities remotely, and my thanks go out to all of the staff that have been involved with offering these opportunities (many of which were directed specifically at Year 8!) With the government’s latest announcement last week, extra-curricular opportunities will be made available to students in school. I would encourage students in Year 8 to take these ‘opportunities’ on offer to immerse themselves in what AHS has to offer – something that the disruptions from COVID have limited for Year 8 to date. It is brilliant to bring back a programme that is closer to the normal AHS Extra-curriculum offer.

Well done to this week’s Head of Year Award winners…

Matthew Tse8DiFor engaging exceptionally well with Hegarty Maths. Really well done! Mr Arthur
Beth Ravilious8NAmFor being a shining star at online orchestra yesterday. She has obviously been practicing lots and was really engaged throughout the rehearsal. Well done! Mr Arthur

A £5 Amazon gift card is waiting for you in school when you return!

For the last time before school re-opens, here is a positive quote to take away…
“You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”

If you have any issues regarding your child in Year 8 that you wish for me to be aware of, particularly if there are any issues surrounding access to our online learning provision, please do get in contact with me at aarthur@archbishopholgates.org, or Mr Deamer (Pastoral Support Worker for Year 8) at rdeamer@archbishopholgates.org.

English Home Learning Certificates
Caitlin Wright
Charlie Moss
Elliot McNulty
Fin Wood
James Harrison
Olivia Wilkinson
Sam Skelton
Warren Grant

From Miss Gray in Science
The continued resilience shown by 11C1 is excellent in these trying times. Well done to you all! Mr. Webb.
Emily Bamford, Ellie Holliday, Amal Salman, Kyle Taylor, Jess Taylor, Laura Wilkie, Gideon Ogbemudia, Ben Middleton and Ben Mcbride all continue to impress me with their engagement in Science lessons. Keep it up 10C1! Mr. Webb.
Thank you to my 9c4 science group for working so hard as always, particularly Aiden Allan, Hannah Commins, Rosie Davies, Lyla Hodgson, Fin O’Driscol, Emily-Sue Toye and Ruben Wood! – Thank you – Miss Gray
Another thank you to my 9a3 science group for showing great resilience learning a difficult topic online! A particular mention for Blair Bailey, Jamie Bulmer, Jorja Geesing, Alisha Langhorn and Cameron Scott! – Thank you – Miss Gray
– I would like to say a big thank you to my 11s3 Science group for showing resilience and continuing hard work. If I tried to pick out particular names, I would end up with the whole group! So, thank you and keep going! – Miss Gray
Ella Walker continues to work consistently in Y13 Chemistry.  She makes sure every subject is understood thoroughly before we move on.  Dr Osman
Caitlin Harrison has impressed me enormously in Year 12 Chemistry.  She is tenacious!  Dr Osman
Philo Derbyshire and John Monk in 11a1 have both stepped up in Triple Science with a positive, “can-do” attitude and with a pleasing consistency in quality of work.  Dr Osman
Fausta Jablonskyte, 10d3, has been making some fantastic contributions to on-line Science lessons!  Dr Osman
– Jola Fairess, 8c1 has shown just what a good Physicist she is in the recent unit test, well done!  Dr Osman
9d4 Science – All working very hard on Google Classrooms!  Well done, Mr Evans
– Joshua Botha, Thomas Ellis, Lottie Hardy, Lenda Moharrk, Elliot McNulty, Freya Rowley, Cassie Staines, Lily Storey, Kelsy Wheatland and Leland Taylor
– Y13 Biologists have shown excellent focus, determination and understanding throughout home learning and performed brilliantly in their genetics assessment. Miss Day
– Y9- Thank you for your hard work and regular contributions to live science lessons: Betsey Greenway, Zoe Cardy, Robyn Strangeways. Miss Day
– Y10- Thank you for your hard work and regular contributions to live science lessons: Livvy Peel, Henry Lucas
– Y10- Great continued effort and work in Science: Natasa Vas, Olivia Barton, Parish Edge, Aidan Marr, Anatolia Boguc, Chloe Rouse, Louisa Shaw, Alice Woolway, Onila Weerasinghe. Miss Day
– Y7- I was really impressed with the high level of participation and effort from the whole of my class (7Bl) in our live lesson this week. Miss Day
– A huge well done for an outstanding electromagnetism assessment to Tamara Alahendrage and Jacob Fletcher. Miss Day
– I have been really impressed by the amazing effort in Science from Caspar Farrell, Jessica Macdonald, Shannon Smith and Tayla Langham. Miss Day

Student Wellbeing – Thought Provoking Tuesday

Collective Worship
As we move through this half term and the Christian season of Lent we are continuing with our Pilgrim Pathways theme.
Going on a journey can be a great transforming experience, but it can also be difficult. It can be physically tough and sometimes even difficult mentally and emotionally. The key item on our pilgrimage this week is a first aid kit.

Tuesday – “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” – The Bible, Psalm 46:1