Update from Mr Yates - 05.01.2021
Please see below for latest update from Mr Yates
Dear Parent / Carer
I am writing to you all to confirm what we know at this point (Tue 5.1.2020 – 5pm). I am sure you are working hard to deal with the challenges this situation has brought your own families so I don’t want to over burden you with too much information and I have tried to keep this letter as short and clear as I can. Please bear in mind that information is being released to us on an ongoing basis and things could change. I will make sure we share anything we feel you should know as soon as we can. We are currently expecting the school closure to be for several weeks and last until February Half Term when government will review the next steps.
Our staff have refined and improved what they do around remote learning and I know other staff have been in touch separately about how it will work. Please seek support from the class teacher or others where you need it. I appreciate that this is a big ask for parents and students. Please do all you can to keep your child engaged and support them in what they are doing. It will make a real difference in the short and long term
We are determined to put in place all that we learned from our previous lock down experience and make sure that your child receives a really meaningful and engaging learning experience during this time. Learning has already been put in place across the school today for all students.
The school closure applies to all year groups and all students unless they fall in to the category of key worker children or are invited in to school for other reasons. There are very clear definitions from government for critical work, I am sorry but we cannot accommodate requests from families that fall outside these definitions.
From 6th January onwards, students who attend the key worker school setting can attend in non-uniform. Please make sure your child is dressed appropriately for school and please remember, rooms are well ventilated so school may be more chilly than normal. Please follow the usual COVID prevention rules before you decide if your child is fit to attend school. Those students who have needed to attend school today have been warmly welcomed, conducted themselves sensibly and safely and worked well.
Free School Meals
If your family is eligible for free school meals, we would like to continue to support you over the next few weeks, we are currently working through some logistical elements but we hope to have support in place for you by the end of the week. Updates will follow soon.
Summer 2021 exams This message is particularly for our Y11 and Y13 students. It is vital that you keep working as well as you can with the work being set for you by your teachers. Although we have been told that the summer examinations will not follow their expected format, we know that the government and OFQUAL are looking at lots of different ways you may be assessed to award you your final grades. The work you are being set may play a part in deciding those grades, it may also be preparing you for whatever alternative style of awarding process is eventually put in place. It will definitely be preparing you for your next steps in life and education. Keep working, keep learning and keep trying.
You will be feeling unsettled and quite possibly angry and upset that things have changed in this way, don’t give up and keep going. One way or another, you will need to earn the grades you receive in the summer, no matter how they are finally awarded. I will write to you again as soon as we have more detailed information about how this will happen.
If you are in Y11 and planning on attending our Sixth Form (as I know many of you are), I also promise that we will use what we know about you to decide if we are able to offer you a place. Should something unforeseen happen in the summer, you will be able to trust that those teachers who know you best are making the decision on you place with us.
January 2021 exams. This only affects as very small number of students in Y10, Y11, Y12 and Y13. We currently expect these examinations to continue as planned. We are writing to you individually about each subject that has January exams and the different arrangements we are putting in place.
We currently intend to continue our preparations around testing for staff and students and we plan to use this time to plan and prepare as fully as we can. I will write to you again soon with further information about this. I am very grateful to those of you who have come forward to volunteer your time and services to support us with this and we will be in touch soon about how this will work.
Finally, during the previous school closure, I was struck time and time again by the sense of community across the school. It didn’t matter where students and staff were based, we still talked with each other, supported each other and made sure that everyone felt part of BCS. I am sure the same will happen again over the next few weeks. Whatever you are working on, learning or dealing with, you are not alone. We will be in touch and do whatever we can to support you and your child.
Take care and keep safe,
Craig Yates - Headteacher