1 July 2020 Update

Dear Parents, Carers and Students


After 100 days of lockdown, it’s been great to see an element of ‘normality’ around the site over the last week with more and more students in school every day; enjoying each other’s company, conversations with staff and cracking on with learning in practical subjects.


And then the leaked Government announcement threw another curve ball into a game with constantly moving goal posts, unfamiliar pitch markings and no apparent rule book!


With complete transparency, and just to share some of the initial challenges with you so they come as no surprise, I wanted to keep you up to date with where we are. Obviously, there will be much more to follow in due course, so I’ll be relatively brief.


Thanks to the outstanding work already undertaken by Dr Davis, supported by Mrs Waddell and Miss Wozniak in relation to the related modelling of different scenarios, we know that we can in theory accommodate all year groups on site in ‘Year Group Bubbles’ at any one time - in Year Group ‘Bubble Zones’ spread around the school from the start of September. However, as with all schools, this comes with significant implications and compromises, for example:


  • Students will not have normal access to specialist rooms and therefore practical teaching will potentially be compromised or not even possible in specialist spaces
  • All classrooms, whatever their normal designation, will be in constant use for general teaching as part of identified Year Group Bubble Zones eg all Year 9 students will have all their lessons in the Maths Block as their identified Year Group Bubble Zone (please note this level of detail hasn’t been decided yet and is just to illustrate!)
  • Breaks and lunchtimes will need to be staggered with resultant changes to some lesson times
  • No form of home to school transport can be reinstated at present as ‘year group bubbles’ cannot mix and staggered arrival and departure times may need to be considered


So I’ll take a deep breath, and leave it there until we can come back with anything more definite. Rest assured that our aim remains the same. We will make the best decisions we can for the whole school community, based on the best available knowledge. And endeavour to do so prior to the end of term so that as far as possible everyone knows where they stand for September.


Very best wishes

Derek Peaple