Dear Parents and Carers,

Year 9 Options

Students spent their PD lesson last Wednesday learning about the options process. It was good to see nearly 150 families attend the online presentation for parents last night.  The slides from that presentation, the options booklet and information about the different courses can be found here:


Our covid numbers are rising as more groups go onto seven-day testing. If students run short of testing kits, they are available from the student window.

The situation with staffing is still extremely challenging due to the legal obligation to stay away from work for at least five days following a positive test for covid. We have been using more supply staff than we normally would since Christmas but we can’t find enough of them. Where staff have a non-contact period, it is highly likely that they will be asked to cover for an absent colleague.

Because staff are doing so much to cover for each other, you might find that emails and phone calls take a little bit longer to respond to that normal. Please be patient – we will get back to you.

We currently have the following numbers of students and staff off school due to covid:

Current number of known positive cases and absent from schools





 Year Group
















Isolation work

This information appeared in my last bulletin and has not changed since. Where students are isolating, we will set work for them to do. That work will be available on Go 4 Schools by 5.00pm on the first day of absence. For practical reasons, subjects which teach a very large number of students such as RE, PSHE, music and drama will set work once a fortnight on Go 4 Schools labelled “Isolation Work”. That work will be visible to all students but need only be completed by students who are completing their lessons remotely. If you need any help with work for isolating students, please contact Mr Sumner -

Wednesday enrichments

We are now well into the second cycle of the new Wednesday enrichment project. There have been the inevitable teething issues and a small number of students won’t have got the options that they really wanted. Nonetheless, the huge majority of students across the school are enjoying mixing with other students of different ages and spending an hour a fortnight on something relaxing, enjoyable and, hopefully, enriching. When I surveyed students before Christmas about their thoughts on the school, the response to the statement “I think Wednesday enrichment is a good idea” was extremely positive, with 48% of the 400 students who responded strongly agreeing.

Cars in bus circle

I mentioned in my last letter that a small number of parents were driving into the bus circle at the end of the day to pick up students. That has got much better. Thank you.

If you are picking students up, collect them either from a safe place a short way away from the school or use the car park as a pick-up point.

Messages to reinforce to students

All the grassed areas of the school are out of bounds for the time being. If your child comes home with muddy shoes or clothes, it’s because they have been somewhere they shouldn’t have.

A small number of younger children have taken to poking holes in the top of plastic drink bottles and then squirting the drink into their mouths and, sometimes, at their friends. If students are seen with a drink bottle with a hole poked in, it will be taken off them and put in the bin.

Great things that happen outside of school

If your children do something outside of school that makes you and them proud we would like to hear about it too so we can join you in celebrating it. Please email either me or Mr Sumner.

Have a good weekend,

Andy Hunter