Principal's Letter, 5 March 2021

We look forward to welcoming your children back to school next week. It has come to light this week during live lessons that some students are not aware of the details of their return to school, which were outlined last week. Please therefore share the following details with your children to ensure they are adequately prepared for their return to school. I would remind you also, of the government’s stance that every child should now return to school.

The staggered return of year groups is as follows:

  • Year 10 and 11 – Monday 8th March
  • Year 7 – Tuesday 9th March
  • Year 8 – Wednesday 10th March
  • Year 9 – Thursday 11th March

I would like to assure you that we are committed to ensuring the safe return of all students. Therefore, the measures put in place in the autumn term will continue including social distancing and wearing of masks.

You will have seen in the media that the government has extended the use of face coverings in secondary schools for a limited period to all indoor environments - including classrooms - unless 2m social distancing can be maintained; this will be reviewed at Easter. In view of this, please ensure that your child has a face mask, and a sealable plastic bag for storage, before leaving home. (There are exceptions to the rule for when wearing a face covering would affect your ability to take part in "exercise or strenuous activity" such as PE, or for anyone who doesn't wear a mask for health reasons.)

Year groups will be taught, will socialise and will queue for the canteen in their bubbles. Students should wear full school uniform, with all necessary equipment including hand sanitiser.

The three required lateral flow tests will be conducted over the next fortnight for those students whose parents have provided consent. This is for people with no symptoms. If your child develops symptoms at any time (such as a high temperature; a new, continuous cough; or a loss or change to their sense of smell or taste) they must immediately self-isolate, and book a test by calling 119 or booking online.

We will remind students of the measures in place on the morning of their return to school. Students deliberately breaching the measures in place to protect public health will be sanctioned with a break detention, or time in Ready to Learn. Repeated deliberate breaches may result in a fixed term exclusion.

FSM

As students will return to school next week, free school meals vouchers will be issued as follows:

  • Years 10 & 11: no vouchers as they're in from Monday
  • Year 7: £2.25 voucher just for Monday as they're in from Tuesday
  • Year 8: £5.50 voucher for Monday and Tuesday as they're in from Wednesday
  • Year 9: £7.75 voucher for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday as they're in from Thursday.

Year 8 Parents’ Consultation

The Year 8 parents’ consultation will proceed as planned on Thursday 18th March. The meeting will be virtual using the appointment booking system. We have trialled this recently with other year groups and it has worked very successfully.

The appointment booking system will open on Monday 8th March at 4pm and close on Friday 12th March at 4pm. Please book appointments with your child’s subject teachers. I can’t emphasise enough how important it is to have these conversations with teachers about your child’s progress.

Year 11 Period 6 lessons (2.40pm-3.40pm)

These will resume on Tuesday 9th March as per the programme below.

Year 11 Prom

We are delighted to be able to announce that we will be hosting a Year 11 prom this academic year, subject to Covid restrictions allowing and adequate uptake of numbers. Due to COVID restrictions this will take place in the school grounds. We will be having a marquee with food trucks, DJ and photographer. We are very much looking forward to giving our students a celebration at the end of a very challenging year.

The event will take place Friday 2nd July from 6.00pm - 10.00pm. Payment of £25 will need to be made in full by 30/04/21 via ParentPay.

Easter raffle

As part of our prom fundraising we will be holding an Easter raffle with chocolates and yummy treats. If you are able to make any donations of prizes for this, we would very much appreciate this. Tickets will be on sale over the coming weeks.

We look forward to getting back to some form of normality next week, which I believe to be extremely important for our wellbeing.

Mr P Slaughter, Principal