Daily update 21st July 2020 – The end of term has finally arrived and the summer holidays will officially begin tomorrow with a sigh of relief and a smile.

Thank you to everyone – parents, students, staff and our local community – for your messages of support, kind words of encouragement and appreciation of what we have done during the strange times of lockdown.  We have come a long way this year, having started the year so positively before the pandemic and then showing that we can act strategically and swiftly under pressure and always in the best interests of our students.  They, their families and our communities are truly at the heart of everything that we do here.

We say “goodbye” to some staff today, who are leaving us for pastures new.  We know that you will join us in wishing them all the very best in their new adventures.

Site opening during the summer

As we continue to prepare the site for September there will be some unusual disruption to our normal summer opening times.  The site teams will be working hard over the summer period to set up ready for September and our IT support team will be working on upgrades to servers, which might cause some disruption to our home access systems.  For these reasons we have decided to shut to all staff except the site and IT teams for the week beginning 27th July only.  This will mean that phone calls and emails won’t be answered as promptly as usual during this week.  Our normal service will resume from Monday 3rd August.  We will always endeavour to answer any queries as quickly as possible – please bear with us during this week.

Safeguarding procedures

Our safeguarding procedures will return to normal from tomorrow.  Once the students are back in school in September they, and you, will be able to refer to the safeguarding team in the usual way by contacting Ms McGrath or Ms Vidler during normal school hours.  We will remind the students of this, as we usually do, in September.  If you have any concerns about a child’s safety during the summer break, or at any time, you can contact Children’s Services on O1522 782111.  Other useful phone numbers can be found below.

NSPCC helpline:  help@nspcc.org.uk / 0808 800 5000

Childline:  0800 1111

Useful dates

13th August – A Level results day (see separate email for timings)

20th August – GCSE results day (see separate email for timings)

Tuesday 1st September – Staff training day

Wednesday 2nd September – Year 7 and Year 12 Induction day (see separate email for timings)

Thursday 3rd September – All students return 😊

Safety briefing videos

I will be recording safety briefing videos in the week before we return in September and these will be published on the year group teams.  I will send an update that week with instructions on where to find this.

If anything changes during the holidays I will, of course, let you know.

I have enjoyed writing these daily updates – it has helped me to feel closer to you and has created a connection that we didn’t have as strongly before.  Whilst I won’t write on a daily basis in September, we have already planned weekly newsletters to send to you each Monday.

Once again, thank you so much for your support.  I’m really looking forward to welcoming everyone back in September.  I wish you all an enjoyable and safe summer break.

With very best wishes,

Jo Tunnicliffe