Our latest updates and advice, including home learning and on-site testing

Update on Year 11 exams, Free School Meals and data allowances (7 January 2021)

Dear Parent/Carer,

We hope you and your family are well during this new period of lockdown.

Please ensure your child is in the routine of completing the ‘Daily check in’ in their ‘In Touch’ Google Classrooms to let us know how they are doing (of course, any students attending the academy are not expected to do this).

From next week we will be asking Year 7-10 teachers to be live in their Google Classrooms at the times they would normally be teaching your child. This is already the case for Year 11.

Next week, please ask your child in Years 7-10 to follow their timetable in Google Classroom. They can communicate directly with teachers in the ‘stream’.

Useful link: our Home Learning guide for parents/carers.

Year 11 Exams

You may have seen further announcements from the Government yesterday confirming that the summer GCSE exams will not go ahead as normal and that teacher assessment will be used to assign grades.

We are still waiting for further information about what this will look like and I know that Ofqual (the exam regulator) is currently working through various options. They have been clear that this will be different to last year and evidence of students working at that grade will be required.

I fully expect that we will be asked to run some form of assessment remotely and to use evidence of students’ work including work submitted remotely over this half term. It is therefore vitally important that students continue to follow their timetable remotely on Google classroom at the normal timetabled times.

Year 11 BTEC and Cambridge National exams taking place this month and next will still be going ahead and students must attend unless self isolating.

I will update you as soon as I have further information.

Free School Meals

We will be in touch with families who are eligible for Free School Meals as soon as the new scheme is up and running.

If any families are facing hardship this week, please contact your LPSOs to discuss whether there is any support we can offer, such as a food parcel.

Year 7

Ms McLean (LPSO)

Mr H Egalton (LPSO)

Year 8

Ms Mitchell (LPSO)

Mr Talabi (LPSO)

Year 9

Mr Blagbrough (LPSO)

Mr Poole (LPSO)

Year 10

Ms Thistlethwaite (Senior LPSO)

Mr Graham (LPSO)

Year 11

Ms Jackson (LPSO)

Data allowances

You may have seen in the news that there is a new government scheme allowing children to access additional data on their mobile phones. This is intended to support their home learning.

Children with access to a mobile phone on one of the following networks might be able to benefit:

– Three

– Smarty

– Virgin Mobile

– EE

– Tesco Mobile

– Sky Mobile

Other providers may join the scheme at a later stage.

To apply for this scheme, the academy must submit information on your behalf to the Department for Education. If you would like to apply, please complete this form:

Did you know…your child can access Google Classroom using the browser on their PlayStation (‘www’ option) or Xbox (Microsoft Edge)? Whilst writing long answers is not ideal on a games console, it might be a helpful way for some students to see what work is due.

Best wishes

Chris Beard

Head of Academy