Message from the Headteacher to all Parents/Carers

Dear Parent/Carer,

I hope that everyone is well as we come to the end of the second week of the lockdown.  Thank you for all your efforts to keep your children engaged with their education, we do appreciate how difficult this can be at times.

I wanted to let you know of some of the developments that are taking place at the school as we move towards the Easter break.

There will not be any ‘Teams’ work set across the Easter break – instead we have a number of enrichment projects that students may wish to complete – they are in place for Year 7-10 and range across all subject areas.  They are a great way to keep brains active over the holiday period and any completed projects you wish to send back to school will be entered for a prize draw.  The link to the enrichment projects is here (you need to scroll to the bottom of the web page).

As you can imagine we have had thousands of posts from students in the past two weeks.  Can I ask that students are patient and do not expect immediate answers from their teachers when they post a question or a comment.  Teachers are keen to support but they are not on 24 hour call, therefore, they will get back to you however it may not be until the next timetabled lesson.  Often the answer to a question can be found in the information left by the teacher.

We are pleased to announce that we will have our first ‘Lockdown Learner Wall of Fame’ up and running on the website by the end of today.  We were very keen to recognise and reward students who have produced work of excellent quality during this lockdown period.  Therefore, each week names of students and pictures of work will be posted on the ‘Lockdown Learner Wall of Fame’ that have been chosen by their classroom teacher – all students who have their names mentioned will then be placed into a prize draw, if they are drawn out of the hat we will send them a £10 Amazon voucher.

We still have no concrete news on exactly how GCSE and A level grades are due to be awarded, but every indication is that it will be primarily based on Teacher prediction, coursework and Department for Education data based on student prior attainment.  In the meantime, Year 11 and 13 will no longer be set specific work on ‘Teams’, unless it is related to coursework, or in some Year 11 subjects, to complete the course.

In the next half term we will set some transition work for Year 11 students who are aiming to come back into the sixth form.  This will include pre reading and specific learning to complete and will be used as a guide to support entry in September 2020.  For Year 10 and Year 12 there will be an assessment week from the 11th May.  In that week ‘Teams’ will be suspended for those year groups and all Year 10 and 12 students will be required to complete assessments.

In other news, if you are in receipt of Free School Meals you should now be receiving vouchers via your email.  If there are any issues with this please do get in touch with the school.  This is a Dorset wide scheme (although Dorset are looking at moving to the national scheme that has now been established).

With regards to trips abroad and reimbursing money, we are working with the insurance companies and Dorset Council to gain some clarity.  We have been verbally informed that we are covered for this eventuality, however, details are still scarce and I would ask for your patience as we try and sort this issue out.  When we have any firm information we will of course let you know.

We are also aiming to contact all of you next half term to check on progress and to see if there are any other ways in which we can support you.

Take care and I will write again before the start of the new term.

Yours faithfully,

Adam Darley
The Purbeck School

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