School Closure 23.03.20

Dear Parents and Carers

I am writing to update you on where we are on this first day of national school closures. We are open as usual for the children of key workers. Thank you to those workers for responding to our request for notification of whether you need to send your children to school so that we could make appropriate plans.

Contacting school

We need to do all we can to support social distancing.

To this end, reception is no longer being physically staffed in the school. You can telephone the school as normal, and your call will be answered remotely, or you can email

If you child needs IT support with respect to accessing resources or online lessons, select option 9 after dialling the main school number.

Please also refer to the school website for additional information.

Trips and visits

We have reluctantly taken the decision to cancel all trips and visits planned for the rest of this academic year. We appreciate that many of our families will be worried about their finances at the moment, and so ESW have decided that any risk lies with us as an organisation rather than parents. We will refund any payments that you have already made as soon as we possibly can.

Completion of work

Teachers are setting work whilst the school is closed.

For Years 7, 8, 9, 10 and 12:

Teachers are setting work using a mixture of Epraise, class notebook, skype, Teams, Senaca and Sparx. We expect students to complete this work to a high standard, just as they would if they were in school. This maintains a work habit and ensures that students are not at a disadvantage when they resume their studies in school in the future. Please encourage and monitor your sons and daughters yourselves. We will also be monitoring work completion, and will be in touch if we have concerns. For Years 11 and 13:

We appreciate the uncertainty being experienced by students, and can reassure you that we are confident that the arrangements being put in place are as good and as fair as possible in the circumstances. Although we are awaiting confirmation from exam boards, we expect to be asked for Predicted Grades for all those students who were to take external exams this summer. These will be decided using our professional judgement, taking into account everything we know about achievement and attitude to date. Any results achieved in pre-public exams will be taken into account but will be only a part of the judgement. Individual teacher assessments will be moderated across the school, and will be moderated again by exam boards to maintain overall national performance at levels similar to previous years. We know our students well, so please do not feel the need to email us in order to make the case for a particular grade. If a student is unhappy with the grade finally awarded by the exam board in July, it seems that they will have the opportunity to take an exam next year. We understand that the numbers taking this opportunity are expected to be very small.

We believe that it is good practice for Years 11 and 13 to continue to have a routine, and to continue to work to prepare themselves for the next stage of their education. It is the choice of students and parents whether to complete this work, and the extent to which you wish to be prepared for possible exams next year. To this end:

. Teachers will continue to set work. . They will upload work that is necessary to complete the course. This is particularly important for students competing BTEC courses where the exam board is planning to ask schools for student’s work. . They will also upload tasks that enable students to refresh and embed the knowledge they have already covered. . In addition, they will signpost reading and work that will help to prepare Year 11 students who are planning to continue that subject at Post-16 level.

These are unprecedented times for us all. We will continue to do all we can to support you and your children, and please do not hesitate to get in touch if we can be of any help,

With best wishes Suzannah Wharf Headteacher