17 April 2020 Update

Dear Parents, Carers and Students


I hope that you all remain safe and well and have had as good an Easter break as possible in these circumstances.


Over the holiday period, Mrs Wendy Hayes and her team of helpers have continued their amazing working in producing and supplying much needed PPE to a wide range of care service providers, with my latest blog on the school website celebrating all the thoroughly deserved plaudits that have been received:




Staff have also been working fantastically hard to produce the attached Virtual Curriculum Overview Guide for your child’s Year Group for the start of the new term on Monday.


This provides you all with a clear sense of what to expect in terms of the main focus areas of work and how that learning will be organised and assessed going forward over the next term. We have really worked to ensure that, as we move away from that initial two-week period prior to Easter where, to be honest, all schools were needing to be reactive in providing a basic continuity of provision, there is a clear and planned progression in learning, and greater breadth, variety and balance to the curriculum offer as a whole.


I’d also really want to emphasise that this is not about you needing to ‘teach’ your sons or daughters moving forward; it’s instead encouraging and supporting all the best principles and habits of learning in any context: routines and structures, with regular breaks and a focus on ensuring that there is also plenty of physical activity mixed into the working day.


No curriculum overview has been prepared for Year 11 and 13 where, unless teachers have made any individual requests for outstanding work to be completed, no further work will be set. Preparatory work for those Year 11 students who will be studying in the Sixth Form from September will follow. Current Year 13 students will receive a range of pre-university/workplace preparatory activities.


There has been little further by way of significant national education policy update over the holiday, save an announcement which you may have seen yesterday - and especially relevant to those in Year 11 and the Sixth Form - that A Level and GCSE grades will be released on 13th and 20th August respectively.


Our wonderful sense of community remains a huge source of reassurance during this challenging time and in this context I am also enormously grateful to the work of the Park House School Association. We ‘met’ as a Committee over the holiday to discuss a number of ways in which the Association will be offering special support over the coming weeks. An update from Co-Chairs Teresa Crocker and Kathryn John follows:


“Although the PHSA are unable to meet in person at the moment, we are still active by continuing to hold our meetings virtually. As a result, we have:


- Postponed our Grand Draw until later on in the year, however we do ask people not to throw away their raffle tickets.  A separate communication will follow shortly.

- Allocated funds towards an exciting new virtual initiative.

- Identified ways people can still support us through:


  • 200 Club (£4 sign-up for the remaining four draws this academic year). Details are on the PHS website under the ‘our community’ header.
  • Amazon Smile – just enter smile.amazon.co.uk and select Park House School Association. The PHSA will receive 0.5% on all eligible purchases.
  • thegivingmachine.co.uk which is another cashback site. There are over 2,000 participating retailers so it’s possible somewhere you regularly shop is listed.


Our next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday 21 April at 7pm, so if you’d like to join us virtually, please contact phsachairperson@parkhouseschool.org


Thank you as ever for your support.


Best wishes


Teresa Crocker and Kathryn John

Co-Chairs, PHSA.”



You will note the reference to supporting an exciting new virtual initiative. This relates to a brilliant website development which will provide virtual indication and transition support to students - and their parents and carers - currently in Year 6 who will be joining us as the new Year 7. If you are the parent/carer of one of these young people, please look out for a specific update early next week.


I now look forward to working with you all again next week for the start of a very different but equally exciting new term of learning. I will continue to provide updates every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.


In the meantime, please stay safe and well. With good wishes

Derek Peaple, Headteacher


Family life during the lockdown