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Letter from Mr Day - 04/12/2020

Dear Parents/Carers

I hope that you and your families are safe and well, and looking forward to a careful Christmas break. I wanted to write to you all following the end of the second national lockdown.

The last week and a half has seen the first cases of Coronavirus identified in members of our school community. We hope of course that they and their families are recovering and that everyone remains safe and well. I would like to thank all members of the community, particularly staff and students, for how calmly and safely they have handled all of the recent unexpected situations. I will highlight the conduct of Year 9 for example. When some had to leave the site to self-isolate whilst others remained, they were exemplary, despite the worries that many may have had.

Following the report of any case that we receive we have extensive conversations with experts from the local authority and Public Health England (PHE). PHE have expressed confidence in our safety measures, and they remain highly effective in minimizing the chances of infection occurring within school. To that end, PHE agreed that the cases we have had in staff and pupils were most likely a result of infection in the community, and not a consequence of the virus being spread in classrooms.

In order to continue to ensure the safety of all, we have spoken to students regarding the changes in rules for Tier 2 and how they continue to keep themselves, their families and the community safe. We expect all members of our school community to be calm, creative, engaged and respectful, both in school and out. I would ask you all to continue this message so that we can support our learners - we know that the current case numbers in the local area are at the higher end of those being recorded in the Norwich and Norfolk area.

I know that for those pupils forced to self-isolate that things are difficult - we have all spent far too long inside our homes already this year. On that note, I would also like to say well done to the staff and students who have embraced ‘remote learning’, thus ensuring that although not in school the learning of the curriculum continues regardless. We have several members of staff who are now multi-talented at being able to teach a class live, while simultaneously teaching others remotely. The uptake from students has been excellent, which demonstrates how much they value the learning from their teachers and support from you all at home.

As we are now into the winter months, we are aware of the challenges that will be faced with temperature and keeping adequate ventilation within school. We therefore will be writing to you shortly in regards to acceptable adaptations to uniform. As well as this, we are currently in the process of placing permanent and semi-permanent coverings in outside areas of the school.

Where any families are experiencing financial hardship in regards to uniform or warm winter coats, please do speak to the Heads of Year, to see what we can do to support. For anyone experiencing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19, Norfolk County Council have set up a special support scheme to help Norfolk residents get through winter.

If you need help or support, get in touch as soon as you can. And if you don’t need this support, but also if you know someone who does, please pass the message on.

Many thanks for your continued support in ensuring everyone can remain safe, whilst enabling our learners to continue their education.

Best wishes

David Day


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