A message to all families
Friday, August 27, 2021
We can't wait to welcome you all back
I hope that you and your families are well and enjoying the summer. We held a scheduled Senior Leadership Team (SLT) meeting this week, to review the government guidance on returning to schools and, in particular, the testing of students. I am writing to update you on the outcomes of that meeting so that you are aware of plans for the first week of school.
As you may have seen, the government have asked schools to test students in school when they return to school before providing them with home testing kits after having done two tests in school. They have also given schools latitude in delaying the start of teaching to allow these tests to take place. As they were previously, the tests are optional and not compulsory. If you do not wish your child to be tested then they should just come in for their first full day of school, as per the table below.
Our guiding principles when planning the start of term, and every term over the last 18 months, have been to try and return to normality as soon as is safe and advisable. We do not want to delay students learning in lessons any longer than we have to and we certainly do not want to further inconvenience families by altering the planned start to term if we do not need to. Therefore, there are very minimal delays to the planned and advertised start to term, which now looks like this:
- Year 7 students will be tested on the morning of Friday 3rd September and then carry on with their planned Induction Day for the rest of the day (finishing at 2.55pm). The extra time before lessons start will be great for Year 7 as they will have lots more orientation time to their new secondary school!
- Year 11 students will need to book a test for the afternoon of Friday 3rd September. Once they have done their test that afternoon they will return home. They will have a bespoke day to help them prepare for Year 11 on Monday 6th September, when they will be in for the full day.
- Students in Years 8-10 will need to book a test time for Monday 6th September. They will just come in to school for their test then return home, as they did last year. There are no year group bubbles now so we have open up the booking to enable families to book slots for siblings together. All students in Years 8-10 will then be in school from Tuesday 7th September. Periods 1 & 2 on this day will be spent with students’ Academic Mentors, for all year groups.
- Students in all year groups will then have their second test during the second half of the week, popping out of lessons for 10 minutes to do so.
Hopefully you can see that we have tried to get all students tested as quickly as possible so that we can get started with the new academic year and begin students learning in lessons.
- Students do not have to wear uniform on the days that they are coming in to test, before returning home.
Thank you in advance for your support with this and as a group of staff we are all looking forward to getting the academic year started and welcoming the students back to school.