Remote School Provision
5 January 2021
Dear parents, carers,
In accordance with the Prime Minister's announcement last night, our students will now not return to School for face-to-face learning before February half term. (i.e. not before Monday 22 February 2021.)
We will, of course, remain open for our vulnerable children and children of critical workers.
Remote School begins as from today and I know that parents will be working hard to juggle all the demands of family and working life to ensure that a routine is established, and I do understand that this is not easy. Many lessons will be delivered live on Microsoft Teams, which can be accessed from a smartphone, tablet, or laptop. Staff have worked very hard to make this happen in time for such an eventuality and this has been long in the planning.
Some lessons will be set work on Show My Homework, where this is the most suitable platform for a particular lesson. I must tell you that a number of our teaching staff are still quite unwell after contracting this terrible virus before Christmas and so you will understand that not every lesson can be live.
Our Asymptomatic Test Centre, which we completed yesterday in School, will be utilised to support staff who are working in the building for our vulnerable children and children of critical workers. I am grateful for the tremendous efforts of the whole team who made this essential planning happen over the Christmas holidays.
As we enter a second lockdown, I write to encourage all of our families that we will do our very best to stay in touch and keep that connection and sense of belonging that is so essential for our students. I do understand that this is challenging on many levels, but we are called to act to protect and serve our communities, and so we must.
Please do not hesitate to reach out for support if you need it or if your daughter or son is in need of practical provision or emotional and wellbeing support. There is a wealth of experience gained from the first lockdown, and we know that the most important thing is that our students quickly establish a routine and stay connected with their learning and their school. Those children eligible for Free School Meals will also have the same support as during the first lockdown, as provision is made with vouchers.
I will write separately to our Year 11 and Year 13 students, who will have many questions and perhaps feel quite uncertain and troubled about examinations and grades. I would like to reassure them that we will work very hard to get answers to all of their questions and offer them reassurance. In the meantime, we are informed that, public vocational exams scheduled to take place in January will go ahead as planned.
Summer Examinations will not go ahead as planned. The Secretary of State for Education will work with Ofqual to put in place alternative arrangements and more details will be published in due course.
With my very best wishes to all of our families and continued hope that you all stay safe.
Mrs M French