Information for Parents/CarersSchool Closure & Key Worker Information
Dear Parents and Carers,
As you know, the Government has directed that schools must fully close from the end of the school day on Friday 20th March. In response to this, we have worked to ensure that parents and students can access learning support online and will continue to keep you updated about how this will work and to make sure, if the period of closure is extended, that these resources are developed to support the education of your child. Please continue to visit the school website www.netherhall.org , Twitter @netherhall and our Facebook page to keep up to date with the arrangements we are making.
Years 11 and 13
Today has been an emotional one for us all. Year 11 and 13 students arrived at school in large numbers. They were understandably upset with the news regarding the cancellation of their examinations but conducted themselves with great credit. It speaks volumes for our students that so many elected to stay in school and complete mock examinations even though they knew they would not be taking the actual tests. Such is their pride in the work that they have completed many will also be back tomorrow to sit their English mocks. Moreover, their support for each other was universal and a source of great pride.
In terms of Year 11 students, please be advised that our staff are currently preparing some materials which they will be able to use to begin engagement with the full suite of A level courses, providing an opportunity to keep moving forward rather than coming to a halt. Mr Marsaoui and The Oakes team are determined that we will support all of our students, regardless of their final choice of Sixth Form provider.
On the subject of Sixth Form places, we are very aware that some of our students will be anxious about their futures and acknowledge that, due to the disruption, we haven’t been able to send out offer letters to students following our interviews earlier this term. However, I would like to take this opportunity to end this uncertainty, confirming that we will be offering places to all of our students who attended interviews. We also stand ready to support any other Netherhall students who wish to remain with us next year.
Finally, we are expecting news tomorrow regarding decision of how examination grades are to be determined for this summer. It is highly likely that part of this will be based upon the school’s predicted grades which are now locked on our school intranet. However, please rest assured that we will ensure all assessment information is closely reviewed before being released to the exam board. We will ensure that the data shared most faithfully reflects the work of each student, not a single mock assessment grade.
Years 7 to 10
Other year groups came into school today to collect their books from their lockers and to speak with staff. Once again, they are to be applauded for arriving as individuals, collecting their belongings efficiently and adopting such a positive attitude. Any other students are welcome to do the same tomorrow via our reception.
We have continued to monitor the completion of online work. We’ve been delighted with the volume that students are getting through and the quality of work that is being produced. It is vital that students keep learning throughout this break in their formal education and our staff are working each day to provide a broad variety of tasks and learning experiences for them. As time goes by, we will aim to use increasingly interactive and dynamic platforms for this work.
Unfortunately, we have had to take the decision to cancel work experience for Year 10 this year so that we have the possibility of regaining two weeks of classroom time should the school be open in June.
Year 12 will continue in school tomorrow before moving over to online provision. We’ve been delighted that so many students in Year 12 have been able to continue to attend over the last few days and will ensure that the interruption to their studies is minimised through the close support of our staff.
Free school meals
At the moment, we are making interim arrangements to provide vouchers for those eligible for free school meals. We will be in contact separately with those families early next week to provide details of how the system will work.
General guidelines and provision for key workers / vulnerable students
Unfortunately, we are still awaiting full confirmation of the list of key worker occupations that was promised by the cabinet office yesterday. However, we have gone ahead and planned provision for students where both parents (or one in single-parent households) are actively working in these lines of work.
As these details are quite lengthy, I am sending these in a separate communication so that only those families affected need attend to this. However, it is vital that we have a response from any family wishing to request a placement by Midday tomorrow so that we can plan our staffing appropriately.
Thank you again for all your kind and supportive messages to myself and other members of staff. They are really appreciated by all.
Key worker letter and application form can be downloaded here