Headteacher Update

March 2021

Today will see the first messages sent home recognising those students that get things right every day in school. As I explained in my update last week, every student automatically has two credits for every lesson in the week meaning a total of 50 credits. If they keep hold of all of them they have had a perfect week by being considerate and demonstrating resilience in every lesson, which is a great achievement. If students keeps hold of 45 or more credits then they have had a good week, but perhaps have missed a homework or not completed as much work as they could in a lesson. The aim is simple for all students, in that they need to keep hold of all of their credits. If a student falls slightly below the threshold, then their form tutor will have a conversation about what hasn’t gone quite right and hopefully the following week they will show an improvement. Where this is not the case your child’s form tutor will contact you.

You will by now have received the information and kits for home testing. These tests must only be used for your child and only positive or void tests need to be reported to the school. As a reminder, if your child tests positive using these kits then they will need to have a confirmatory PCR test at a testing centre. If the PCR test is negative then your child can come back to school. Please do contact the school immediately if your child tests positive using the home kits and do not wait until you have results from the subsequent PCR tests as we will need to identify close contacts immediately and not wait for the confirmatory results from the PCR test.

If you would like tests for your household or household bubble you can obtain kits from The Parks in North Shields between 1pm and 7pm.

During December, the COVID Winter Grant was given to families with children on free school meals to purchase food during school holidays.  The £60 payment covered Christmas, February half term and the first week of the Easter holidays.  The Local Authority have now been given additional funds to make a short extension to the grant.  This means the Local Authority are now in a position to give families of children on free school meals an additional £15 voucher for each child to cover the second week of the Easter break.  The vouchers will be emailed to parents/carers from this coming Monday 22nd March.  Please remember to check your inbox and spam folders frequently, and contact the school office if you have any issues.

It has been great to have had all students in school all week and the vast majority have returned positively and are clearly pleased to be back. We have a full programme in place to start recovering lost progress both in an academic and social sense. As part of this, we will be amending lesson times every Wednesday after Easter so that we can deliver our Social Recovery curriculum. This programme focuses on community and reflections of what Covid has meant to us all. Our hope is that by delivering this programme once every week, we will address any anxieties or concerns that students may have, in particular around the subject of loss. Beyond this we have an extensive programme of both academic and pastoral support for students. As ever, if you do have any specific concerns about your child please do get in touch.

I hope that you all have an enjoyable weekend.

Best wishes

Jonathan