Principal's Blog - 5th March 2021

Final Update regarding next week

Dear Parent/Carer,

I am delighted to be welcoming all of our students back to school next week after such an extended period of home learning. I have shared all the information below with you previously, however I felt it was useful to send again as a reminder as I appreciate there is a lot of information to digest.

The Government has announced that schools in England will officially re-open on 8 March and that attendance from this date is compulsory for all students unless the child has a shielding letter.

We are all aware of the amount of time that young people have missed from school and the government guidance will make it compulsory for all students to attend, with the prospect of penalty fines being imposed should children not return.

It has been an incredibly difficult, not to mention challenging period for everyone and we are sure that your child is somewhat anxious about returning to school. We can reassure you that the school remains a safe, supportive and encouraging environment for all of our students, and we will make every effort to ensure that your child’s transition back into the Academy is as smooth as possible.

We are fully aware of the concerns you have regarding COVID 19. However we believe that stringent measures are in place in school, and we continue to put safety for all at the heart of our protocols. We are continuing to do all that we can to reduce the risks placed upon our students both during lessons, social times and upon arrival and departure from the Academy.

Our risk assessments are written in line with guidance from the Department for Education and Public Health these have been ratified by the Ormiston Academies Trust.

We appreciate that the pandemic has made this a particularly difficult time for our young people, and if you feel that there are specific concerns or indeed any issues that prevent your son/daughter from attending school regularly please arrange to contact your child’s Achievement Director immediately.

In the meantime, we look forward to welcoming our students back to the Academy along with the prospect of working with you to ensure that your child achieves their full educational potential.

We have made a video for students regarding the protocols for next week so please do share this with them.

Staggered return arrival 8.45am

Monday 8th: Year 11, 12 and 13 on site only

Tuesday 9th: Year 10, 11, 12 and 13 only

Wednesday 10th: Year 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13 only

Thursday 11th: Year 8, Year 9, Year 10, Year 11, Year 12 and 13 only

Friday 12th: Year 7 return and all students are therefore on site


As mentioned in my previous letters, we have made a video to show how the testing is carried out so that students can watch this in advance:

Screens will be in place so that students cannot see each other get tested. If parents/carers feel that they would like to carry out testing on their child themselves or to arrange for testing elsewhere this is also ok, but please do let me know. Each day students will be allocated a time, which they will be notified of via their mentor. Students will be asked to go to the sports hall to be tested at that allocated time. Key workers will also follow the testing day indicated below with their allocated year group.

Please ensure you have completed the consent form for testing. As mentioned previously, we will not be testing any student without consent, however I do hope that all will be tested either on site or at home as we know many students are asymptomatic so we do not want to have to keep closing bubbles when we can easily test the students to minimise this disruption to learning. The consent form can be found here: but please only complete if you have not already done so previously.

The testing schedule can be viewed here.


The timetable will revert back to normal therefore all students will be on a staggered break and lunch, to ensure students remain in bubbles and away from other year groups. Students, like last term, will have access to the main hall/or canteen and outside space at both break and lunch. They will also be able to purchase hot food at both break and lunch times. Please ensure you have checked parent pay to ensure money is transferred ready for the staggered start next week. Also ALL students will be required to bring in a water bottle, to ensure they can access the free water stations around the academy. Water bottles were provided last term for all students, if your child has misplaced this they will need to bring in their own as we will no longer have plastic bottles to sell on site.

As a reminder, the timetable can be viewed here.


We expect all students to continue to adhere to the uniform policy and be in correct uniform including shoes not trainers. Students may wear PE kit on the days they have PE, but please ensure they bring in spare footwear to wear indoors due to the wet ground conditions. Equipment like pens/pencils etc. are required as usual, so please ensure your child has full equipment for learning each day.

Face coverings:

ALL students, unless they are medically exempt, will be required to wear a face covering whilst on site as per the Government guidance that we must adhere to. This means that students must wear them on the school bus and during social time like last term. However the new regulations state that students will now also be expected to wear a face covering during lesson time, so students will only be allowed to remove face-coverings when they are outside or involved in PE activities. However, if your child is exempt please ensure that you complete the form to indicate this, and that a medical lanyard is worn, to avoid any unnecessary confusion. Link for exemption attached again

Home testing:

We will be offering home testing kits to all students weekly, following the completion of the initial three tests on-site. Please note that we are only able to provide home testing kits to students and staff, not family members. Students will be given the home testing kits once they have done the three tests.

As I am sure you can imagine, this week has been very busy preparing for everyone to return, but we have also had our careers drop-down day on Monday, which proved very successful, and for which we have received some really positive feedback. We also celebrated World Book Day yesterday, which really boosted the spirits of staff and students alike. Please find below some photos to, hopefully, make you smile!

Kindest regards, as always.

Emma Baker



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