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Head teacher End of Term Letter 13th Dec 2021

‘Advent is a time of waiting for our Lord, who will visit us all in our own hearts. The Lord is Coming! Let us wait for Him!’

Pope Francis

Dear Parents and Carers,

As we approach the end of term and the Christmas holidays, let us give thanks for all we have received and for each other. It has been a long term, but a very successful one and I am very grateful for all of your support.

We continue to face challenging and uncertain times as the pandemic continues. Although many restrictions have been lifted for schools, we remain vigilant and will follow any further guidance we may receive regarding the pandemic. I am sure you are as pleased as I am that close contacts have not had to isolate this term, making things much more settled for the children and for your family lives.

However, we are still operating in unprecedented times. After Christmas the plan was for pupils to return on Wednesday 5th January to start the new term. However, we are now required to carry out lateral flow testing before pupils return which will mean a later start for most pupils as we will prioritise examination cohorts. Further details are listed below.

The arrangements for the end of term are as follows:

Wednesday 15th December - last day in school for Y11 and Sixth Form (normal finish time)

Thursday 16th December - last day in school for Y10 (normal finish time)

Friday 17th December - Years 7, 8 and 9 in school with a 12.30 finish. Pupils who are entitled to free school meals may collect a packed lunch at 12.30 if required. Pupils should be in full school uniform as normal.

Due to the threat level being raised and concerns over the new variant, we have made the decision not to run any of our usual Christmas activities such as Hamper Mass and Liturgies. Whilst we are very sad that we cannot run these events, we are trying to minimise pupils and staff mixing where we can in order to protect everyone’s holiday and keep our school community safe and well.

The arrangements for the start of term are as follows:

Tuesday 4th January - Staff training day (no pupils in school)

Wednesday 5th January - Lateral flow testing for years 10, 11, 12 and 13 (all other pupils to remain at home for remote learning). Pupils will be sent home straight after their lateral flow test.

Thursday 6th January - Years 10, 11, 12 and 13 attend school as normal. Lateral flow testing for years 7,8 and 9. Pupils will be sent straight home after their lateral flow test.

Friday 7th January - Years 10, 11, 12 and 13 to attend school as normal (scheduled intervention sessions for year 11). Years 7, 8 and 9 to remain at home for remote learning.

Monday 10th January - all pupils return to school as normal

Please see below for the timings of the lateral flow tests:

Pupils should report to the Sports Hall for their test and must be in school uniform. Face coverings are required.

There is no need for you to provide further consent if you have already consented to your child having a lateral flow test in school.

With concerns over the new Omicron variant, we would strongly advise pupils to continue with home testing over the Christmas holiday period. We have plenty of test kits available in school and pupils can collect these from their form tutors before the end of term.

May I take this opportunity to wish everyone a very happy and holy Christmas and warm wishes for a successful and prosperous new year. We look forward to welcoming your children back into school in January.

God Bless

Miss H Burrows


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