Dear Parents and Carers,
Please see below a message from Sara Edwards (CEO of The Acorn Education Trust):
|Firstly, and most importantly, we hope you, your family and friends are well.
Following the Prime Minister’s announcement last night, we thought it was important to inform you of our thinking as term 6 approaches. We continue to follow government policy which is now “stay alert, control the virus, save lives”. The Prime Minister said: “If we as a nation begin to fulfil the conditions I have set out, then in the next few weeks and months, we may be able to go further. In step two at the earliest by June 1st after half term, we believe we may be in a position to get primary pupils back into schools, in stages, beginning with reception, year 1 and year 6. Our ambition is that secondary pupils facing exams next year will get at least some time with their teachers before the holidays.”
We hope to hear more logistical detail about what this really means during the week and we very much hope we can welcome more of our children into our schools in June.
What is absolutely clear is the need to move carefully and slowly into a new “normal” operation, which will provide significant challenges for us all. Each school will have its own logistical issues and we will be unable to open to anywhere near capacity whilst we need to maintain distancing to prevent infection spreading and we have staff shielding. This means we will only be able to have some learners from each year group on site at any one time. Further information will follow about this once government expectations are made clear. However, we acknowledge that, although we want to support families by accommodating as many learners as possible on site, many of you will be anxious about children’s safety amongst large numbers and, similarly, many of our staff are already anxious about their safety amongst large numbers. This is going to be complex and is likely to remain so for a considerable amount of time whilst we work towards a new “normal”. Please bear with us as we work out the details.
We are also acutely aware some of our children/students may not return to their school until September, so this week we will review our home learning curriculum and resources to ensure we are providing stimulating materials for all.
Each school will be in touch with more detailed information as soon as it is possible.
Take care and very best wishes
An update from Clarendon
The above message from the Acorn Trust is very helpful in understanding the current situation in light of the Prime Minister’s announcement.
What it means for us:
- We have to face the fact that our students may not be able to return to school for the foreseeable future. Years 7, 8 and 9 may not return until at least September. The government’s suggestion that our Year 10s and Year 12s might get some time with teachers before the summer is quite vague and we need to look into the logistics of this. Ideally, we’d like this to happen and get some proper teaching done. However, social distancing and safety will be paramount in our thinking. I will update you when I know more.
- With a view that most students may have to continue home learning until September, we will be working with our Subject Leaders to ensure that our home learning package is reviewed and still fit for purpose. We must really ensure that our students are learning at home; they cannot afford to fall significantly behind. Show my Homework is very good, but is there more we can be doing?
- We will be looking to ensure that there is more direct communication from teachers through things like video and audio links. We want our students to see and hear their teachers as often as possible (albeit through virtual platforms, where the teachers record clips and send them to the students). Many of our teachers are already doing lots of this sort of thing. Worksheets are good for independent work, but they are no substitute for seeing/hearing the teacher.
- We will also aim to keep up the direct contact with home. All of our vulnerable students will be contacted at least once a week to check how they are getting on. All other students will be contacted by their Tutor/Head of House regularly. This is not to check up on them, but to offer support and to push a little where needed.
- We also have our team ready to help anyone struggling with IT or Show my Homework. Please get in touch if you need some help/guidance.
- We will, of course, continue to print out all resources and leave in our reception area for families needing them. Please come along and pick up packs of work. We also have exercise books, paper, and writing equipment if you have run out.
- We remain open for our vulnerable students and for the children of key workers. If you are returning to work and you fit into one of the key worker categories, then please call us. We will be pleased to help you out and look after your children if we can.
- We are also open over the Whitsun holidays for the children of key workers. Please do use us. Contact Mrs Snelling (my PA) at firstname.lastname@example.org to book a place for your child/children.
Please call me directly on 07732800899 if you need assistance or have any questions.
All the best and please keep safe.
Some other key points to remember: –
- Your son/daughter should follow their school timetable. They should do no more than this.
- Your son/daughter should do no more than an hour of work from Show My Homework for each subject at a time – as it is stated on their timetable. They do not need to finish a piece of work in that hour. They can pick it up again the next time that subject appears on their timetable.
- To help, we are asking teachers to date stamp the piece of work, so that the students know roughly when it should be attempted.
Managing stress levels: –
- Do not let your son/daughter get stressed about this.
- If they follow their Timetable and chip away at it, that’s fine.
- There are no detentions or behaviour points for falling behind. They, and you, just need to do what you can.
Free School Meals
If you think you may have become eligible for free school meals since the lockdown, please do look at the guidance and apply.
Please click here to apply. There is no harm in finding out if you are eligible and you may be entitled to receive a £15 voucher every week, for your child’s school lunches.
Please click on this link: http://www.clarendonacademy.com/the-school/free-school-meals/