Dear Parents and Carers
We are writing to provide details of the planned full reopening of the school to all students from the start of next term. We will write again towards the end of the summer break to provide more details for individual year groups and to respond to any changes in the current situation in the intervening weeks.
As you may be aware, when all students return in September the school will be required to operate in a very different way to the way it did back in March. Significant safety measures will be put in place and social distancing will be required. This will require significant planning and induction for all staff and additional support for those students in year 7 joining the school for the first time.
Therefore, the first day of term for your child will be Monday 7th September.
We have been partially open for the last four months and have run successful, safe arrangements in school which have now become habitual. Many year 10 students have already attended school so are familiar with these routines. With the full return in September we will continue these approaches (as detailed in our risk assessment) whilst extending this for full opening. We understand for those who haven’t been in school that there may be concerns about returning but we have detailed below the ways we will make school as safe as possible through good hygiene and minimising mixing. Attendance will be compulsory from September and the school will work with parents to alleviate any concerns that may exist.
When we return in September we aim to make the school experience as familiar as possible as your child moves into year 11. We will have the same high expectations on behaviour and school uniform. Our staff will use assessment as part of learning to support students with gaps in their learning. Students will be able to mix as year groups at social times and reestablish their school friendships.
In year 11 adjustments will be:
- A designated start time and school gate within a whole school staggered start (between 08:20 and 08:35) and finish (between 14:50 and 15:00).
- The whole of year 11 will be a “bubble” and mixing between classes is allowed within the year group.
- All of year 11 will be based in one area of the school.
- Existing tutor groups from year 10 will continue into year 11.
- For Maths, English and Science students will be in the set to be in the same classes for all three subjects. All of these lessons will take place in the same rooms and the specialist teacher will move room.
- Students will be grouped separately for PE and for their option subjects.
- Staggered breaks and lunches will be introduced with each year group in a separate food service and social area. No food will be served at break. There will be an advertised reduced food option at lunchtime so students can be served quickly and queues minimised. Students should bring bottled water and a mid-morning snack.
- Hand sanitiser dispensers have been placed around the school to encourage good hand hygiene. (Your son / daughter is allowed to bring hand sanitiser to school.)
- Students will not be able to share equipment unless it has been cleaned. Students must be equipped to learn – a reminder of the list is at the end of this letter, please endeavour to supply as many of the non compulsory items as possible. Students will not have access to lockers.
- Students will return in full school uniform in September. On a day when they have PE they will attend school in PE kit to avoid the need for changing. To avoid skin contact with furniture from wearing shorts, students will need to wear black tracksuit bottoms or Philip Morant sports leggings for girls. If they need a layer of clothing more than the short sleeved PE top, this should be the Philip Morant black PE hoodie or their blazer. When students have drama or dance they should wear PE kit for the day as above, they may exchange the Philip Morant black PE hoodie for their Philip Morant performing arts black hoodie. No students will have PE on their first day in school so will all attend in full school uniform on their first day. Both boys and girls can wear black tracksuit bottoms as their PE uniform.
- Routes to and from social areas will be through outdoor routes and at social times students will be encouraged to be outside. Please ensure that your son or daughter brings a coat.
- In light of recent announcements about shops and public transport, all students must have their own washable face covering available in school and a plastic bag to store it in.
Further guidance from the DfE on the full opening of schools can be found on their website.
Preparing for GCSE examinations
A number of year 10 students expressed concerns when they came in for face-to-face support regarding the amount of work they would need to complete for next summer’s exams.
In light of this we are proposing the following options:
- Students and parents may choose to reduce the number of option subjects studied from four subjects to three.
- We will replace these five hours of lessons over two weeks with taught English, Maths and Science in the Q theatre. Places are limited in each option block
- Parents should complete the form below, to identify the subject their child wishes to discontinue. If their child has more than one subject they would consider discontinuing, then please rank these in order of priority. We may have to use a second choice if the first choice option block is full.
- There will be no independent study time, the five hours will all be taught lessons in the core subjects. These lessons will be for exam preparation but any student continuing with all four options will not miss out on subject content.
- Please complete this form if your child studies combined science wishes to withdraw from an option subject
- Students taking triple science:
- Due to the depth of understanding required to complete triple science, we have concluded that we cannot deliver this in core lessons alone.
- Any student who wishes to continue with triple science, rather than the standard offer of combined science, will now need to reduce their options by one subject so that the triple content can be taught in those extra five hours over two weeks.
- Parents should complete the form below, to identify the subject their child wishes to discontinue. If their child has more than one subject they would consider discontinuing, then please rank these in order of priority. We may have to use a second choice if the first choice option is not feasible to timetable.
- Students taking triple science will use all of their five hours for triple science content.
- Please complete this form if your child currently studies triple science
- We will be offering “catch up” classes after school from September, initially for subjects with coursework requirements.
Getting Children to School
Getting children to school from September is undoubtedly going to be a challenge for schools, parents and transport providers. However, this summer term has shown that in partnership we can make it work well.
For children who use the commercial bus network, it is likely social distancing will still be in place and the ability to travel on a bus will be significantly reduced. The Local Authority will be issuing guidelines shortly. Children over the age of 11 who are not exempt will be required to wear face coverings.
We also want to reduce car journeys to school not only because walking and cycling are healthier and more environmentally friendly but also to ensure we minimise the congestion impacts around schools and more widely.
Should you wish for your child to cycle to school, please complete the attached form by Friday 24th July.
- Please ensure that your child has hand sanitiser and uses it before boarding and on disembarking public transport;
- Ensure children over 11 wear face coverings while travelling on public buses or in taxis – unless they are exempt
- Encourage your child, who can cycle or walk to do so
Another letter will be sent before the start of term, detailing the gate to be used, start and end times and the allocated teaching room for your child. Please talk through the content of this letter with your child so they are familiar with the changes that will be in place.
Please make sure your child responds to the request to login with their new login details after the 20th July so they can still access all their google apps. Leading up to the start of term we will share information in different formats so that students are very ready to return to school.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your support during this difficult period of time, to wish you a peaceful summer and we look forward to working with you again in September.
Mr Holder Mrs Neill
Executive Head Teacher Head of School
To support learning students are expected to bring a pencil case containing the following equipment to lessons:
- Black or blue pens
- Green pen
- Scientific calculator
- Glue Stick
It would also be beneficial if students had:
- Coloured pencils
- 2B and 4B pencils for art
- English and Language dictionaries