Monday 19th April 2021
We are now into the final term of the academic year. It has certainly been a strange and challenging year but it is my greatest hope that we have more stability for this term.
As the term begins, I would like to take this opportunity to inform you of the current guidance with Covid-19 and to remind you of some key points regarding expectations of pupils, parents and carers.
POSITIVE CASES OF COVID-19
New guidance has been issued with regards to what should happen if a pupil receives a positive result from a home lateral flow test kit.
If your child tests positive for Covid-19 after using a home testing kit, please follow this procedure:
Inform the school as soon as possible so we can carry out contact tracing
Book a confirmatory PCR test (you can do this online or by calling 119)
Keep your child and all members of your household at home in self-isolation until you have the result of the PCR test
If the PCR test is positive, your child will be required to continue to self-isolate along with all members of your household
If the PCR test is negative, your child can return to school. Please telephone us and let us know the outcome of the test regardless of whether it is positive or negative.
In terms of contact tracing, your child will still be sent home to self-isolate if we receive notification of a positive test result from a home lateral flow testing kit. If the PCR test result for the impacted child is negative, this overrides the lateral flow test result and you will be informed that you can send your child back to school. Should the PCR test confirm that the case is positive, all identified contacts will be required to complete the period of self-isolation.
It is likely that we will continue to have some positive cases in school. Hopefully these will be minimal but I do anticipate some further disruption throughout this term. We will continue to send only close contacts home for isolation in the event of a positive case unless we are advised by Public Health England to close a year group bubble.
I am very proud of how compliant and sensible our pupils have been in wearing face coverings in school. The government has advised that face coverings should continue to be worn and this will be reviewed in May. Thank you for your ongoing support in ensuring your child has a face covering for school; we have been very impressed with the mature approach shown by the vast majority of our pupils in wearing a face covering in lessons and in communal areas.
All pupils are expected to be on site by no later than 8.40 a.m. every morning. Being on time for school helps pupils to be ready for their day and to hear important messages that are given out in morning line ups. My stance on punctuality is clear; being on time is a life skill and I expect all pupils to arrive by 8.40 a.m.
This term we are having a focus on improving punctuality for a small number of pupils who are persistently late for school without any valid reason. If your child is late for school, you will receive a letter informing you that they were late. If your child continues to be late, sanctions will be applied, starting with a senior staff detention and escalating to prosecution of parents/carers where necessary. It is not unreasonable for us to expect our pupils to be on time for school and I would like to thank you in advance for your support with this.
If you need to speak to a member of staff please telephone or use the school email enquiry address: email@example.com.
Parents and carers should not come into school unless an appointment has been arranged; teaching and support staff do not have ‘free’ time during the school day as they are either teaching or engaged in other duties. If you have telephoned, we aim to return a call within 48 hours where possible, unless it is a genuine emergency. Please be patient; schools are busy places and staff cannot always take or return a call immediately. If you arrive in reception without an appointment and there is not a safeguarding emergency, you will be asked to leave and to wait for a member of staff to call you. Thank you for your understanding and patience.
As a school we take great pride in our school uniform as it is a symbol of our community cohesion and high standards.
It is my expectation that all pupils are in full school uniform, including school P.E. kit, every single day. Trainers, hoodies and denim jackets are not permitted and will be confiscated if they are worn on the school premises. Shoes must be appropriate for a business environment and should not resemble a trainer or pump.
Pupils are permitted to wear one stud in each ear but no other piercings are allowed, regardless of whether the piercing is new. We have been very clear about this as a school and my position remains firm. I would also ask that as parents and carers you do not allow your child to have false, gel or acrylic nails during term time as they are also prohibited and will need removing.
All pupils must now have school P.E. kit for the days they have P.E. We will be applying sanctions for pupils who are not compliant and would ask that as parents you support our endeavours to make sure pupils are smartly dressed and ready for school. A copy of the uniform policy can be found on the school website and if you have any questions please contact your child’s form tutor.
I’d like to conclude this letter with some positive news! Despite all of the disruption and challenges we have faced as a school, we have still achieved great things in our school community. Here are some of our highlights:
School attendance remains approximately 4% higher than national average
Pupil conduct during school lateral flow testing was exemplary
We will be holding remote Parents’ Evenings for all year groups this term with your child’s tutor
We received over 800 applications for places in Y7 for next September and have filled all 210 slots
Our Y11 and Y13 pupils are very engaged with their studies as they prepare to submit final evidence samples for this summer’s grading.
May I thank all of you for your ongoing support and understanding through what has been a difficult year so far for everyone. I remain very proud of our wonderful school community and feel blessed to work with such wonderful staff, pupils and their families.
Have a wonderful summer term
Miss H Burrows
Head teacher - Whole school letter 19.4
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