COVID-19 Update 07-05-2020
Supporting learning, pastoral care and support links, emailing teachers, a message from Luke Staton
I hope this letter finds you as we await the Prime Minister’s announcement on Sunday evening about any loosening of the lockdown. As I write to you from my unusually quiet office in the Academy, I have taken the time to reflect on the past few weeks and the possible likelihood of schools reopening imminently. I have seen briefing and counter-briefing on this topic and I am no wiser. However, I do not expect the plan to involve opening secondaries from the outset of any relaxation of the ‘rules.’
With this in mind, we are planning for every eventuality and, as usual, I will keep you informed of any news.
I have spoken to a good number of parents this week and taken some feedback about communication, work set and plans for feedback and assessment. After a lengthy period of time off school, we are planning for next week to be ‘Academy Feedback Week.’ All students will be given opportunities to show how well they have engaged with the curriculum to date in each subject. All students should submit work to be assessed by teachers next week, details of what and how will be on the curriculum document. Please don’t worry, this will be linked to house points and subject rewards – details will follow on the curriculum plan for Years 7-10 from 9am, Monday 11th May.
Next Wednesday (13th) is National Numeracy Day – look out for plenty of fun activities – all students are welcome to join in. These activities are going to be shared on the curriculum document next Monday and emailed by Heads of House too, they will not be on Frog.
Year 11 curriculum – as well as voluntary enrichment opportunities, this now includes skills based units to support post-16 study. This week was note-taking skills – look out for a different focus each week. Our finalised sixth form transition programme will be available after May half term.
Year 12 online learning programme – well done to all involved for their participation and engagement so far – our Year12 students have proved themselves to be, yet again, fantastic.
Year 6-7 transition arrangements – I include this for any students with younger siblings joining the Academy in September. Next week, I will be writing to every student joining us in Year 7. We are planning a transition project for our new students, including all subject areas. The intention is to promote lots of fun opportunities to join in with your new House to receive house points. Details to follow after half term in the hope we can begin this in the first week of July.
House updates – It has been lovely to see so many uploads to Frog of activities going on at home. We are still running lots of fun enrichment activities where students can earn house points too. I really could not write to you all today without a special thank you for all the hard work going on at home from students and parents at this difficult time. Some of the communication we have received has just been outstanding. My staff team also deserve a mention for their hard work and involvement too – I have loved seeing the photos from the Academy Bake-off and #Lockdownart this week. Please keep them coming in as it is wonderful to see such talented youngsters showing their full range of skills.
Pastoral care and support links
At the Academy, the safety of our students continues to be as important as ever. In order to continue to support you as families we are providing resources for parents too, for you to access at home:
- advice on arguments and family tensions during lockdown
- support for parents on mental health during lockdown
- useful resources for lockdown on NSPCC
- online safety resources here are excellent
- factsheets and activities for students to be able to engage at home
In addition, the links below will support students to access support too. These will be emailed to students by our R2L tutor team if needed:
- Mental Health Support and Advice
- Support with maintaining and building healthy relationships with a focus on teenage abuse
If you or your child need further support please do not hesitate to contact us via your child’s R2L tutor or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
We actively encourage students to use their school email to contact teachers to ask questions, seek feedback and ask for support.
Should your child need any support whilst working from home and using our IT resources (such as accessing their school email accounts), remote access or Frog, please review the ‘Working from home’ tab on the school website www.srpa.co.uk
If you need any technical support, please contact email@example.com. When contacting the Academy, we ask that you do so only from student school email addresses or email addresses that you have previously supplied so that we may verify your identity. We cannot accept emails from unknown addresses or from students’ personal email addresses.
A message from Luke Staton
A large number of you will have worked with Luke over the last 18 months and he has delighted me by producing a short motivational video for you all. Luke’s coaching and ‘Inspiring the Next Generation’ programme have been pivotal to the Academy’s curriculum programme over this time. It is only around seven minutes long and encourages you to do three things each day. Use the link below to see what Luke suggests. You won’t regret it:
I would be grateful if you would continue to keep up to date with the Public Health England guidance on Coronavirus via the website below, which is currently being updated daily:
As usual, I will keep you updated on developments via the Academy website and parent email. Curriculum plans will continue to go live each week by 9am each Monday morning. I will also ensure that our social media channels are updated accordingly. You may have seen that we have been updating our feed regularly and this will continue on Instagram and Twitter.
If you have any further questions with regard to whole school arrangements, please email the Academy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whilst we are on lockdown, you could be forgiven for thinking that one day blends into another. Tomorrow we are reminded that it is actually a bank holiday to celebrate the 75th anniversary of VE Day. We do have some activities and competitions linked to VE Day on Frog if you wish to take part.
Of course, VE Day did not signal the end of World War Two which continued to rage in some parts of the world for months to come. However, upon announcing the end of the war in Europe, Winston Churchill used the following words:
“We may allow ourselves a brief period of rejoicing, but let us not forget for a moment the toil and efforts that lie ahead.”
Never were such words more true than today as we face a hidden enemy in this virus, despite being past the peak of infection. Let us hope for a little more hope and joy after Sunday.
Finally, at times like this, I reflect carefully about times of hardship and challenge. My own grandfather, now deceased, fought at Dunkirk and on D-Day as a sergeant in the Royal Military Police. I remember his unassuming manner and quiet fortitude when I was young and it reminds me of what is expected of me in my role in leading my school community through this pandemic as we hope to see ‘green pastures’ again soon.
I will continue to stay in touch with you and as circumstances change. In the meantime, please take care and stay safe.
Mr D Hardy