Dear Parents and Carers,

It’s been a much more predictable week this week and I’m sure we are all - staff, students and parents - looking forward to the whole school being open again next week.

Thank you for responding so quickly and efficiently to my request that students should come to school in PE it on days they have PE. It is working well so far. Thank you too for ensuring that your children all have masks and that the majority have wipes and sanitiser as well. The students have taken to our new procedures very well indeed and deserve all of our congratulations.

I can’t say yet exactly what the arrangements will be for parents’ evenings this year, other than that we will be holding them and they will be remote. We are looking at a range of possible solutions at the moment and will let you know as soon as we have a system that we think will work for everyone.

There have been a lot of improvements to the school site over the period of closure. One of the most significant is an entirely new and much more wide ranging CCTV and alarm system, connecting all the buildings together for the first time. As you know, we occasionally have break-ins at the school which are both expensive and time consuming to deal with. Where we have vandalism or theft by intruders to the school site, we will always pass the matter to the police to deal with. I am confident what we will now be able to provide the police with much better, more detailed footage of intruders should we need to.

We have also invested substantially in improving the network of paths around the site. Students have been walking to the new school building down a path that was only ever intended to access a few mobile classrooms. That has now been doubled in width, as has the path from B Block to C Block. I hope that as a result we will see a lot less mud on shoes, uniforms and school floors and carpets this autumn and winter than we have done in the past.

We spent some time this week looking again at our fire evacuation procedures in order to limit the distance across the field that students will have to walk. We will assemble in an area to the side of C and B blocks rather than the far side of the field. There are now two hard paths running onto the field which ought to get us past the worst of the winter mud if we should need to evacuate.

The performing arts department are working on a plan to enable us to put on the musical we got halfway through preparing last year, as well as a Christmas concert. I don’t know exactly what either of those things will look like but I’m confident they will be excellent.

This feels like the most normal bulletin I’ve written for a long time. The last few months have been difficult for us all, but it is made much easier for us as a school by knowing that we can rely on your support and patience. All of us here have felt the warmth of the community recently and we are grateful for it. Thank you.

Have a good weekend,

Andy Hunter