Dear Parents and Carers,
I am not quite sure where to begin in trying to reflect on the last academic year. We had all
hoped for so much last September but sadly, the year has not gone in a direction any of us
would have wanted. Your children and your families have experienced significant disruption
and in school our experiences have been no different.
As the year closes and we look forward to a break, I want to thank you for your kindness,
support and understanding throughout this year. I know only too well the sheer frustration
you have felt in having your children sent home on numerous occasions and the challenges
you have faced in trying to home school during lockdown. But you have done a marvellous
job of supporting us and I am so grateful to you, especially to those of you I have spoken to
personally who have told me how much you appreciate what school has done to try and
support your children, who have been nothing short of magnificent. Thank you for the lovely
emails, kind words on the phone, messages of support and the trust you have placed in me
and my staff.
I am keen not to dwell for much longer on this year and want to focus on planning for your
children to return in September. Please read this letter carefully as it contains some key
information for you and your children.
START OF TERM ARRANGEMENTS
We are required to carry out lateral flow tests with pupils as they return to school from the
Please see below for the dates for each year group to attend for a lateral flow test and the
date of their return to school
Thursday 2nd September and Friday 3rd September: INSET days
Thursday 2nd September: Y12 and Y13 lateral flow testing
Friday 3rd September: INSET day, no pupils in school
Monday 6th September: Years 7, 8 and 9: lateral flow testing
Pupils will come into school for their then go home for the remainder of the day
Y10 and Y11: remain at home
Y12 and Y13: In school
Tuesday 7th September: Years 10 and 11: lateral flow testing
Pupils will come into school then go home for the remainder of the day
Y7, 8 and 9: Normal school day
Y12 and 13: In school
Wednesday 8th September: All pupils in school
Appointment times for pupils to attend for their lateral flow test will be provided at a
later date. This is a huge logistical operation for us to organise and we have not been given
a lot of notice to have this in place. Please check the website and your emails during the
holiday and just before the beginning of term for further updates.
LATERAL FLOW TESTING
For incoming Y7 pupils, parents will be provided with an ‘opt out’ choice if you do not wish
for your child to have a lateral flow test.
For parents who did not consent in the first round of testing in March, there will be another
opportunity to provide consent for the testing in September.
Pupils should attend their appointment for their lateral flow test in full school uniform. Please
note that parents/carers are not permitted to accompany their child for the test.
CONTINUED CONTROL MEASURES
As a school we will continue to practise the good hygiene habits we have established
throughout the last year, with pupils, staff and visitors sanitising their hands on a regular
basis. We will also be maintaining ventilation throughout the building to encourage a healthy
flow of air.
Pupils will remain in year group zones for social time and we will continue to use separate
entrances and exits at the start and end of the day.
All pupils are expected to be in full school uniform in line with our school policy.
Could I please remind parents, carers and pupils that our rule in piercings is very clear.
Pupils are permitted to wear one small stud per ear; nose studs and other facial, body
and/or additional piercings are not permitted. If your child has an additional piercing that
is not compliant with our policy then that item must be removed when they return to school in
September. I will not accept the excuse that it is a new piercing and therefore cannot be
removed. If your child wishes to have an additional piercing, I would strongly advise getting
this done at the start of the school holiday so that it can be removed in time for the new term.
Trainers are not part of our uniform and can only be worn in P.E. lessons. We only accept a
note from a medical professional i.e. a doctor or nurse if your child needs to wear different
footwear for medical reasons. I would advise parents and carers to be cautious of how
footwear is marketed for school children - some footwear which is labelled as school shoes
does not comply with our uniform policy if it resembles a trainer or a casual shoe. Pupils
must wear a plain black shoe that would be suitable for a professional business
environment. Boots and sandals are not allowed.
ATTENDANCE AND PUNCTUALITY
As a school we have always had excellent attendance and even during the pandemic, our
attendance levels remained above national average.
My view on attendance is very clear; children should be in school unless they are genuinely
unwell or there are truly exceptional circumstances. From September it is my intention to
ensure that we return to pre-pandemic levels of attendance and it is my expectation that ALL
pupils achieve a minimum of 96% attendance. We have been very flexible over the last 12
months but from September I will be taking a firm stance with attendance and we will be
instigating procedures where attendance is poor.
Thankfully we will no longer be required to send children home to isolate if we think they may
have been in contact with a positive case. I will send out more details about what to do if
your child has symptoms when the new academic year begins.
The school gates close at 8.40 a.m. to ensure that the school day starts on time and in a
calm and orderly fashion. Pupils who arrive after this time will be marked as late and
sanctions will be applied to pupils who continue to be late for school or late to lessons.
We are conscious that we have not seen you in person for a very long time and that we have
not met some of you at all since your child joined us! During the first few weeks of
September we will be holding some events for parents to attend during the evening, where
we can share our vision for your child’s education, talk about operational procedures in
school and offer advice on how to best support your child with learning at home. Further
details will be published at the start of term.
I will write to you again at the start of the new academic year but for now, please have a
wonderful summer break. We look forward to welcoming your children back to school in
Miss H Burrows