Weekly update from the Headteacher
Well we are now coming to the end of what has been the strangest half term that I am sure any of us have been involved with.
First of all I would like to thank all of you for adapting to the new way of learning and communicating with the school, and I would like to publicly thank the staff at the school who have also had to adapt their normal working ways.
You may well be aware that there is quite a bit of confusion and press speculation about the opening of schools, so I think it would be an idea if I state clearly the position that we are in. At present we have had no directive from the Government or the Local Authority about reopening the school. The Prime Minister has said that he will make an announcement on the 28th May, so we will wait until then for the authoritative guidance (it may even come before then). However, it is safe to assume that at the moment there are no plans to bring back Year 7, 8 or 9 this academic year, but that there is a strong possibility that Year 10 and 12 may be asked to return in some form. As a result we are currently making plans, completing risk assessments, talking to staff, governors, cleaning contractors and the local authority, to ensure that we have all of the safety measures that we can in place in an effort to be ready to open in some way for Year 10 and Year 12. However, I also feel that I must state now that any reopening of The Purbeck School will be limited in nature, we cannot safely accommodate large numbers of students in the current climate, and so we will only be able to offer a limited service to Year 10 and 12 if they are asked to return. We will of course keep you up to date with any developments and hopefully, after the 28th May, we will be in a better position to say definitively when and how we can start to return these groups of students.
There will be no ‘Teams’ next week due to the half term break and the school will be shut. Next half term Year 9’s will be moving to transition work for their GCSE option subjects. A new timetable will be sent (or by the time this is released it may already have gone out) and the option projects will be available in Teams to access from June 1st. This will be an excellent introduction for Year 9 as they prepare for the next academic year. Many departments are also moving to more project based learning for Year 7 and 8. As we move through the next half term we will be working hard to refine our ‘Teams’ learning to make it as interactive and engaging as possible.
Once again the ‘Lockdown learner wall of fame’ has been inundated with excellent work, keep it going! This week the winner of the voucher is Isabel Yarrow in Year 9 for her History work on Nazi Germany (as a History teacher I am particularly pleased that this has won!) – well done Isabel, the voucher is on its way.
We will be communicating with you all again via phone calls next half term and we will also be calling all Year 11’s to check on their plans for next year. More details on all of this after half term.
I would like to finish by saying a couple of goodbye’s. Mrs Richards is retiring, she has been at the school for over 10 years as a High Level Teaching Assistant. She has supported children in all areas of the school and will be much missed. Mr Potter White is leaving us to begin a new job as the Head of Maths at Blandford School, he has been with us for 5 years and been a crucial cog in the success of the maths department at The Purbeck School. We will be sorry to see them both go, but wish them well for the future. We are also welcoming a new member of staff to the school, Mr Rowland, who will be working in the Maths department.
Finally as always can I wish you all a peaceful half term break next week, stay safe, and take care,