MHS Update 3-7-2020
Yesterday was a big day in terms of ‘education-lockdown’. As you no doubt saw on the news, the Government published their plans for fully reopening all schools at the start of September. As you’d imagine I spent yesterday afternoon and evening digesting the guidance and working out what it means for MHS.
One thing that did not come across clearly in the news reports is the flexibility that schools have been given within this guidance. The expectation to open fully is clear, as is the expectation that secondary schools will cover the full curriculum (which I agree with completely), but how individual schools go about minimising the risk of the virus spreading has been left very much open. The guidance gives numerous suggestions and areas of consideration, but there is a recognition that all schools are different and every situation will demand a different set of measures. I’ll admit that I am relieved by this as some of the rumours that had been circulating about how schools would have to do certain things had been worrying me, especially when I knew they simply wouldn’t work in a large secondary school like ours.
Of course now begins a very big piece of work as we seek to set up exactly how school will run in September (presuming there is no increase in infections in our area in the meantime). The team and I are already putting the plans in place and we will be working firstly with all colleagues and Governors, and secondly sharing the plans with all parents and students so that they know what to expect in the new term. The government hasn’t given us long to do all this but we’re confident we’ll have information out to everyone before we break up.
In the meantime of course our Year 10s continue to attend school – and in good number – and the online lessons are continuing to expand into more subjects for all year groups. Thank you to everyone who has made these lessons possible and to all the students (and parents!) who have taken part.
As we approach the break we are also putting the finishing touches to our ‘summer offer’. Like most other schools we are not hosting any formal summer school over the break, but we are expecting students to complete work in preparation for the new school year. We’re currently compiling bespoke work packs for each year group which will be introduced by way of live lessons in the final week of term, to which parents are welcome to attend. The packs themselves will either be posted home (to all Year 7-9 students and some Year 10s), or distributed in lessons (to the remaining Year 10s), to ensure every student receives them. Students are not normally asked to work over the summer break but this is not a normal year and we very much hope that students see the benefit and complete the work set.
Confirmation of plans for the final week of term
Week commencing 13th July will be a ‘normal’ school week in that it will follow the pattern of recent times. There is no enrichment week planned. Live lessons will take place as per the schedule and Year 10 will be invited into school on the same rota as now. The only difference is that Year 10 students will not have an options lesson and so will leave school at the end of period three. We are keen to keep the core lessons for Year 10 going as long as we can, whilst also providing an opportunity for staff to access the school in larger numbers to make necessary preparations for September.
Have a good weekend all,