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Headteacher's End of Term Letter

Dear Parents/Carers,

As the break for Easter approaches, I am writing to thank you for your support and cooperation over the past 4 weeks, as our pupils have re-integrated and settled back into life at school.

As I’ve mentioned previously, the re-start went smoothly including the testing for Covid-19.  The pupils have responded to all that we have asked of them with great maturity which has really helped to minimise disruption.  Thank you also for the testing you have continued to conduct at home using the self-testing kits.  Your child (where applicable) should have come home with further testing kits and we would ask that you continue to conduct testing over the Easter holidays.  Please could we also encourage you to test your child on Sunday 18th April prior to their return after the holidays.  We ask that you let us know of the outcome of any, home testing for our records, the ‘Covid-19 Pupil Test Result’ form can be easily located on the school website.  Updated guidance released this week on Gov.UK now states ‘All positive results from rapid tests, whether conducted at home or at school or college need to be confirmed with a PCR test within two days of the positive lateral flow test.’

It is my understanding that the Prime Minister is due to make an announcement during the Easter period regarding the wearing of face masks at school in the Summer Term.  As things stand and at the time of writing, we will work on the basis that pupils will continue wearing them in communal areas and classrooms, unless the government and DfE directs otherwise.

At the start of the summer term our uniform code and expectations will revert to pre-Covid arrangements.  Pupils should no longer require additional jumpers, sweatshirts, coats or hats as the weather improves and temperatures increase.  Rooms will still need to be very well ventilated, but unless we experience periods of unseasonable weather, normal uniform should suffice.

In line with the roadmap out of lockdown, we are keen to return to and open up additional aspects of our provision.  At the start of term our intention is to make slight changes to the timings of the school day, though these do not markedly affect the start or finish times.

08.55 – 09.15     am Registration

09:15 – 10:15     Lesson 1

10:15 – 10:30     Break

10:30 – 11:30     Lesson 2

11:30 – 12:30    Lesson 3

12:30 – 13:10    Lunch Break

13:10 – 13:15    pm Registration

13:15 – 14:15    Lesson 4

14:15 – 15:15    Lesson 5


Primarily, the changes are to accommodate a return to form tutor time which wasn’t possible during the earlier stages of the pandemic.

This will still take place in year group bubble areas where strict seating plans will enable track and trace just as is the case in the pupils’ lessons.

The end of day arrangements are working very well with cars not coming on site until 3.30pm onwards when all buses have safely departed.  Thank you for your ongoing patience and cooperation with this.

We also hope to be able to offer further after-school activities and more details will follow in due course.

May I remind parents of Year 11 pupils to make your appointments for the Parents’ Evenings on 22nd and 29th April 2021.  Should you experience any difficulties with the booking system please contact in the first instance who will be happy to assist you.  These appointments will hopefully provide further information on approaches to Teacher Assessed Grades in the various subjects and guidance on what your son/daughter needs to focus on in their remaining time.

We anticipate Year 11 pupils concluding their full-time attendance and all of their work towards Teacher Assessed Grades by Friday 28th May 2021.  Beyond this, some pupils may be required to attend on certain days in June for transition events, etc. linked to their intended post-16 providers or other such support with their next steps in education.  Details of this are not yet known and apologies for any uncertainty or inconvenience caused.  Our plans for Year 11 finishing are in line with the vast majority of other schools in the county and as soon as I have any further information, I will communicate with you.

 I am looking forward to the summer term and all that it will bring, but for now I wish you and your families a happy and blessed Easter, and on behalf of all at St Mary’s, thank you for your ongoing support.

Best wishes

Stuart Wetson