Mrs Dewland's Blog - February 8th 2021
Welcome to my last blog of this half term.
Today is an opportunity to say a huge thank you to ‘Team Healing’ - staff, pupils and parents/carers – for their contributions to remote learning and the support of those in school. We are really proud of what has been achieved by all, and it has been a real team effort, so thank you.
We are all ready for a break, so I hope everyone enjoys some ‘down time’ also.
It was Children’s Mental Health Week last week and, on Facebook, we have been signposting a range of support for all pupils.
One of the features of the week was taking a break from the screen and, instead, using creative talents, something we have been encouraging during lockdown. The school is extending this idea and asking all pupils and teachers to have a screen-free Friday afternoon this week.
Teachers and Teaching Assistants will be setting creative tasks away from a screen, and we will be replicating that for those pupils attending school also.
Thank you for all the positive and supportive messages that we have received in relation to remote learning and the pastoral care and support that we have been providing for all pupils. We are all learning together, and the support from a large number of parents has been humbling, especially those that show an understanding of the challenges faced by all during such unprecedented times.
For reassurance and as already outlined, please note that the non-engagement notifications serve merely as a reminder to pupils and parents about potentially missing work – they are not issued or intended as a punishment/sanction. In the previous lockdown of last Spring, a large number of parents stated that they were not informed soon enough if their child was not engaging in work, and would like to see this improved. Therefore, the school has responded to this request during this lockdown. We know the vast majority of pupils are doing their best, and this is all we ask.
After half term, with the school closure period extended until at least the 8th March, and following a remote learning review, we will be further developing our remote learning offer and increasing the number of live lessons on offer for all pupils.
On our return to school after half-term, we also expect to know more about the wider opening of schools. Hopefully the Prime Minister will be confirming plans for the re-opening of schools from the 8th March. It is widely reported that primary pupils may be first in a phased return – as announced in Scotland and Northern Ireland – so we will wait patiently to see the implications for our school. One thing is for sure, we greatly miss our full school community, and look forward to welcoming everyone back when we are permitted to do so.
Thank you once again for your support in these challenging times; it is much appreciated by the whole staff team.
I hope you all stay safe and well, and wishing all pupils and colleagues a well-deserved break next week.