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September COVID Update

Our Principal, Gurjit Kaur Shergill, has written about some of the steps the Academy have taken to ensure the safe return of all students to school

Thank you for your continued support in getting all students back into school safely over the past few weeks. All of us are committed to providing the best education possible for your child, while securing the health and safety of our whole school community. Thank you for continuing to follow public health guidelines and encouraging your children to do the same.

You are already aware of the steps we have put in place to ensure the safe return of all students to school. We know that you will be keen to understand the impact that we have had in our first weeks of the term, and what our plans are to ensure all students catch up with any missed learning, and what will happen if a student or students are asked to stay at home over the coming months.

I am writing this today in order to keep you fully informed.

School reopening

The Academy has opened full time to all students.  Arrangements have been made to keep year group bubbles as separate as possible.  This includes but is not limited to; separate identified outdoor/indoor year group areas for lunch and break, one-way staircase system, additional line ups at break, lunch and the end of the day and separate year group toilets.  The students have embraced the changes sensibly and we are proud of how well they have adapted to the new arrangements.  The use of face masks in communal areas has been implemented as an additional layer of protection. 

We are now increasing access to the canteen allowing all students to purchase food if they wish.  Please note we are now a cashless school and all payments need to be made using the ParentPay system.

Attendance

 

Attendance week ending March 20th 2020

Attendance week ending September 11th 2020

All students

84.5%

93.9%

Boys

85.3%

94.7%

Girls

83.3%

92.9%

Coverage of the curriculum

The Academy has not limited the breadth or depth of the curriculum and currently all students are able to study all subjects.  Teachers will be using low stakes testing to identify gaps in learning so these can be addressed through lessons.

Year 11 have been prioritised for additional after-school sessions.  These will be reviewed in October 2020.  Additional sessions will be running as we progress through the year, either virtually or face to face as Covid19 restrictions allow.

Remote learning March - July 2020

From day one of lockdown in March we provided all students with remote learning via Google drive and our own internal VLE platform.  This was swiftly followed up with the launch of Google Classroom across all year groups.  In total staff delivered over 700 hours of live remote learning to over 85% of our students.

We also supported 26 families who found accessing remote learning difficult and were able to make use of the government scheme to provide equipment to those the DfE had identified as eligible. 

Remote learning in the future

Following on from the successful launch of Google Classroom during lock down we are continuing to use this platform to set all homework.  If we are directed by Public Health England to isolate a year group, live remote lessons would be delivered via the Google Classroom platform following students’ existing timetables. In the event of a fuller local or national lock down, lessons would be delivered in the following way:

Year group rota: If we are asked to rota different year groups with some being on site and some being off-site, then lessons would follow the normal timetable being delivered remotely via Google classrooms for the year groups asked to stay at home.

Full school closure: In this case all lessons would be delivered virtually. 

A revised one-week timetable would be issued to all year groups.

We would continue to offer onsite provision for vulnerable students and children of key workers.

Mental health and wellbeing

The Academy is committed to ensuring the mental health and wellbeing of all pupils.  During lockdown over 60 home visits were carried out alongside regular check in phone calls.  This was followed up with virtual academic review meetings with all families across all year groups.  We have a strong pastoral team to support students and are able to access additional services through the school nursing and early help system.  If you are concerned about your child, please contact the school asking to speak to a member of the pastoral team via phone on 01322 623100 or via email. Information and support is also readily available via our website here

Thank you for your support in these challenging times. Please remember to follow both the Academy and public health guidance to keep everyone learning safely.

Yours faithfully,

Ms Gurjit Kaur Shergill                                  

Principal