14 November 2016 

Dear Parent/Guardian 

Firstly, I would like to thank you all for your patience and support following the events of last week. Closing the school is something I do not take lightly, however, when faced with a complete lack of electricity, telephones, fire alarms and internet I felt there was no other option. 

Bad Weather and Snow: I do not anticipate a similar situation arising, however it is possible that there will be an occasion when the weather may cause issues. If there is a time when bad weather or snow impacts on the school, we will follow the procedure as outlined in the statement below.

BAD WEATHER STATEMENT: 

In the event of bad weather, it is always the school’s priority to remain open and as such our site manager will work to ensure that the site is both accessible and safe. 

There may, however, be rare occasions when the school might not be able to open as normal as a result of severe weather. It is always difficult to make the right decision due to the unpredictability of the weather; we will aim to do this as swiftly as we can. Please rest assured that any decisions taken will be based around ensuring that your children are kept as safe as possible, taking into account: 

  •  whether children can get safely to school/school transport is running
     (transport make an independent decision about whether it is safe/appropriate for them to travel) 
  •  whether enough staff can get to school to have a safe pupil-teacher ratio 

In such instances, any changes to the usual opening times, including a delayed start, will be communicated via local Suffolk radio. We will also place an update on the school web-site. 

We will also notify you by text and/or email if you have given us your number or email address, so please ensure we have up to date forms of communication, and please inform us of any changes as they occur. If buses do not run because of the conditions, parents will need to decide themselves what arrangements to make and inform the school if students will not be attending. If students have already left for the buses please ask students to allow 15 minutes, as buses may be delayed. If after this time they have not arrived students can call to check on 01440 760333. 

New Parent Governor: I am delighted to announce that Elizabeth Nunn has been voted into the position of Parent Governor and we congratulate and thank her for taking on this role. I am very much looking forward to working alongside Mrs Nunn over the coming years. 

Events in November and December: Over the next five weeks we have several events going on. Over the next two weeks we are holding Pre-Public exams for Years 11, 12 and 13. On Thursday we have our Sixth Form Open evening and on Friday, November 18 it is Children in Need day and we will be holding non-uniform day to raise money for this worthy cause. 

On Wednesday November 30 there will be a Parents’ Forum, where parents have an opportunity to meet with the Senior Leadership Team and ask about areas they want to find out more about. Then moving on to Thursday 8 December we have the Year 13 Parents’ Evening. 

In the last week of term, we will also be holding our Annual Awards Evening (Tuesday December 13) and our Christmas Concert (Thursday December 15). Finally, on the last day of term students will be involved in PERFORM, before our early finish (see below). 

End of Term: Finally, I would also like to inform you that, in line with most secondary schools, on the last day of term, Friday 16 December, we will be finishing school at 1:00pm. Transport will be arranged for this time for students who need this. 

I know we will have another excellent half-term here at Samuel Ward and I look forward to sharing this with you. 

Yours faithfully,

Principal: Mr Neild