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Letter for Parents/Carers

Dear Parent / Carer,

 

A great deal of time has been spent by staff ensuring our school is safe and ready to welcome back all children this week. I am very pleased with the way in which our expectations have been met and on the whole our students have been a credit to themselves, showing how responsible they are and their respect for others.

 

In the two weeks since we returned to school this September we have been operating an ‘interim’ timetable as outlined in the plan we published before the summer break. In that plan we stated that our intention was to move to the full, ‘normal’ timetable for the academic year ahead from Monday, September 14th. We also stated that we would review this decision based on our experiences in school and the wider circumstances within our community and the LA. Clearly the situation has not progressed as planned in our area of South Wales and at present we are all being encouraged to live in a more ‘restricted’ way with fewer contacts.

 

On the basis of all this I can confirm that we will not be moving to the new timetable from next Monday. Instead we will continue to operate the ‘interim’ model with students working in their contact / year groups. We will continue to have staggered break and lunchtimes. The start of the day will be 8.30am for everyone with the end of the school day continuing to operate as it has in these last two weeks. My thanks to everyone for their co-operation with the ‘drop-off’ and ‘pick-up’ arrangements – they are working well and congestion has been limited at the school gates. A more detailed version of our present plan and provision can be found on the school website.

 

Though we are going to continue with the ‘interim’ timetable, we are going to make some minor changes because we are aware that it has some restrictions on what children are learning. As such, from Monday, September 21stwe will;

 

-          Increase access to English, Maths and Science lessons in Years 7 and 8

-          Continue the focus in Year 9 on core subject lessons, which at present we believe is a positive factor. We appreciate option subjects need to be delivered but we have the advantage of starting our options a year early and as such we will commit more time to them as the situation improves, hopefully after half-term.

-          Give additional access to option subjects in Year 10 alongside the core

-          Continue to provide the full curriculum to Year 11, 12 and 13 students

 

Now that we have all returned to school and we have established a way of working that keeps everyone as safe as possible, I can assure you we are reviewing our provision to ensure time is not lost and progress is made by each child. I trust you will understand that we cannot provide everything in the way we would normally do, but all staff are making every effort to provide the best quality experiences you would expect and the children deserve.

 

Collectively we should reflect on a very good start to the new school year. Despite all the challenges we face, our children are showing the levels of resilience they will need and every member of staff will support them all the way.

 

Thank you as always and enjoy your weekend.

 

Huw Cripps

Headteacher