Covid 19 - update - 27th March

Friday 27th March 2020
Coronovirus (Covid-19) - Update for Parents/Carers

Dear Parents/Carers

I hope that you and your families have managed to enjoy some of the sunshine this week.  I have some further updates for you and something to share that helps us all stay in touch.

Government advice
The sense of lockdown has, I suspect, taken hold this week.  As I mentioned at the start of the week, it is very important that our students are aware that the national instructions apply to them as much as any other individual.  I have been in contact with the police this week and I am pleased to report that they believe the situation to be calm at this moment in time, with most people abiding by the 'stay at home' advice.

Police message
Please find below a message from Sharon Baker, Chief Inspector & Local Policing Area Commander for South Somerset & Mendip:

Whilst your local Neighbourhood team are still out in your local towns and villages, parents can help us by directing all non-urgent enquiries through our website, Facebook and Twitter accounts rather than 101.

We are adapting to new ways of working ourselves and have started holding online beat surgeries via out local Facebook profiles:

PC Darren Pearson for Wells
PCSO Mel Rowlands for Glastonbury
PCSO Amanda Ware for Shepton

Policing has needed to adapt, and whilst we will be dealing with more over the phone, I want to reassure everyone that if you need us in an emergency please do call 999, we will be there.

Year 11 & Year 13: exam grades
We have been informed that we can expect the advice from Ofqual and the government detailing how we will assess exam grades for students next week.  We strongly believe that this will involve a wide range of evidence and that will adequately allow us to show that we know our students.  We are told that a timeline will form part of this.  When we have more details on this, I will let you know.

I am not aware of any updates from the universities as to how this will affect university entrance and suspect that it will follow on from the government announcement.

Year 11: Sixth Form offers
We understand that Year 11 students require some certainty at this present time.  We have therefore progressed with our offers for the majority of Year 11 students who wish to join the Sixth Form next year.

We have reviewed all of the assessments that staff have undertaken of the students, both recently and over the whole of their GCSE course.  As a consequence, we will be making unconditional offers to those students who we believe meet the academic standards for entry.  Where we have questions or concerns, we will contact the student.

We are aiming to send out offer letters to the students' email addresses next week.  We will then set up preparation activities that will support them during the summer term.  These will commence after Easter and will involve new Google classrooms based on the Sixth Form subject choices.

Online work
As the many videos that I have seen posted recently testify, home learning is not an easy task.  A reminder that we have set out details of the approach to both school work and other activities in our Guide to Home Learning.  It can be found on our website. You can help us by ensuring that your child regularly logs on to the Google classroom and follows the advice of the teachers.

School site
A reminder that our school site is closed to everyone except the very small number of individuals for whom it is essential that they come to school. This includes our playing fields that are not open to members of the public.

Out of The Blue
We have something joyous to bring you, something to remind you that 'normal' does exist.  Our current edition of Out of The Blue cannot, for obvious reasons, go out in hard copy.  Instead, please follow this link to access a digital version:

I hope that it brings a smile to your face and a reminder of what our school, with its wonderful students and incredible staff, with its brilliant ethos and positive attitude, can achieve.  Whilst it is a community that is behind closed doors at the moment, there will come a time when we will bring this back to life and share in the joy of our collective endeavours and achievements.

Take care of yourselves, your families and your friends.

Yours faithfully,

Mark Woodlock