The Trust Board of Cumbria Education Trust have now confirmed that we are able to open for Year 10 and Year 12, starting on Monday, 15 June. As you know, we are planning to use every day available to us to ensure we maximise the amount of time students spend in school, subject to the limit of only 25% of the cohort being on site that the Government has set.
On Tuesday evening, I went through in detail the process of the reopening and systems in place. The recording of the Parents Broadcast is available on the school website and I know many people have accessed this, which has hopefully, alongside the documents we made available, explained the detail of how school will work. The outline document has been updated to reflect the changes made to Year 10 provision, which has moved from split option days, to full days of each option subject, and it is available to view on the school website.
Personalised timetables for Year 12 were sent to students on Wednesday. Year 10 will receive theirs today at some point. This has been an incredibly complicated task to timetable 375 students with the large number of permutations to meet staff availability and keep within the 25% limit imposed by the Government. I apologise it has taken slightly longer than we had hoped.
Uniform for Year 10
As mentioned in the Broadcast, we have taken the decision to vary the uniform for the reopening. Students will be required to wear:
School trousers/school skirt, black footwear, white shirt/blouse. They may also choose to wear a school jumper or a blue or black sweatshirt/hoodie (any other colour hoodie or sweatshirt they will be asked to remove)
They do not need to wear their blazer or tie. These amendments have been made so that their clothing can be washed after each day in school.
As I write we have just received confirmation that all of the transport has been restored and is ready for next week. As we get the final detailed information on routes and timings today, these will be emailed to parents. We expect by the end of Friday to have these confirmed for all students for the first few days of next week. This may be something that goes to the wire (Transport often does!), so please do give us time. You will be contacted by the time we leave school tomorrow.
We have sent disposable face masks to all students who are due to get a school bus. It has been confirmed by the Local Authority that students must wear a face covering on school buses, if they do not have one, they will not be allowed on the bus. We will issue masks to students for the journey home and their next journey to school, as students leave each day. If they wish to use their own face covering, they should let us know as they leave school, so we don’t waste masks by issuing them unnecessarily.
As we have previously stated, any student wishing to use the catering facilities at school must put money into their account through ParentPay in advance, there is no way to do this in school. No student, in either Year 10 or Year 12 is allowed to leave site during the lunch break.
Year 10 – Can bring a packed lunch to eat at one of the socially distanced tables in the canteen, which they will be directed to, or they can purchase food from the canteen. The food available from the canteen will include filled rolls, baguettes, cakes and fruit pots.
Year 12 – Café 6 will be open at lunchtime. Like the main canteen, the food available from the canteen will include filled rolls, baguettes, cakes and fruit pots. Students are also of course able to bring in a packed lunch.
Students should bring the books/folders that are needed for each subject with them to school. Year 10 will need their Maths, English, Biology, Physics and Chemistry books for their Core Day next week and like Year 12, will need each subject specific folder or book for Option Days. Spare exercise books for each subject will be available if needed. Students are able to bring bags as they stay at the same seat/table throughout each day. No equipment will be lent to students, so they must bring their own stationery/pens etc to school as normal.
Remember – there is no “free” social time
These Face to Face sessions are there to support students’ remote learning, not replace it. All parents need to make sure that their child is absolutely clear that they are supervised at all times – they are not having traditional social time in school, such as breaks or movement between lessons, while the current operating restrictions for social distancing are in place. They will not be outdoors and they will be restricted to their own area in each classroom and indeed they will be sat in one place at lunchtime, always at least 2m from their peers. I cannot emphasise enough that if you think your child will find this difficult, please do not send them into school to fail, as they will be sent home if they do not follow the social distancing rules.
Assembly Briefings for Y10 and Y12
On Friday we are holding briefing assemblies for Y10 and Y12. The links to these assemblies will be sent to student school email addresses as normal in the morning. Both assemblies will have Q&A available for students to ask any questions they may have.
Year 12 – 12:30pm
Mrs Swan and Mr Booth have talked to Y12 already about how the days will work. This will be a relatively brief assembly to go over a few things, such as how their remote learning will adapt to their timetables for being in school and also some final practical details.
Year 10 – 1pm
Y10 will be taken through the structure of their day in detail and be shown how socially distancing is being applied in the school. We will also go over the Behaviour Policy, expectations around uniform and what they need to bring into school to get the most of the time they have with their teachers in the Face to Face sessions. (View the recorded assembly here)
Q&A Parent Session for any last-minute queries on Friday
I will be online for a Q&A session on Friday at 4.30pm – 5.00pm. If you have any final questions please do login using the link below and ask, using the Q&A link that will be in the top right of your screen.
I have made sure it is working as well!
At that juncture I will sign off – I hope between the FAQs (FAQs for Phased Return), the outline of the provision document (Operational Plans for the Return of Years 10 and 12), the broadcast and this letter, we have covered everything. If we have missed something, then please contact the relevant year group team and we will try to clarify things as quickly as possible.
It will be truly uplifting to see more students back in school from Monday onwards and I look forward to welcoming them back.
Mr Chris McAree