WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 16 April 2021

Year 11 GCSE Assessments

This week, Miss Greenhalgh gave an assembly to all Year 11 students to explain in detail how their GCSE assessments would be carried out, in line with the recently published guidelines. You can find a copy of the content of the assembly here. We are currently finalising a comprehensive policy in response to the requirements set out by JCQ and we will share this with you once it has been submitted.

You can also find out more information about the 2021 GCSE series at the JCQ website here.

Ramadan

We are aware of a number of our Muslim students who are fasting during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. We have spoken to these students and agreed support with them on an individual basis. If your child is fasting and they have not yet been spoken to, please email Mr Baybutt E: a.baybutt@millthorpe.southbank.academy so that we can make sure that we do speak to them and agree any support that may be required.

Parents’ Evenings

We are planning to hold parents’ evenings for year groups 7 to 10 after the May Half Term – more details will follow in due course. Apologies that we incorrectly advised that the Year 10 parents’ evening would be taking place next week – this was on oversight based on the original calendar for the year.

Millthorpe joins the My School Fund initiative

We’re pleased to announce that Millthorpe is now part the My School Fund initiative. This innovative scheme allows for us to be able to boost our school’s budget with your help.

How does it work?
Parents, guardians and carers can sign up to the scheme for free and start earning cashback on the things they buy in participating retail stores, including Sainsbury’s and Argos. As you spend, you’ll receive 2% cashback in the form of eGift vouchers that can be redeemed in participating stores. By linking your spend to our school on the My School Fund website we’ll also earn 1% cashback on your spend.

Add that all up across our school’s network of families and together we can all make a big difference!

How to get involved
Visit myschoolfund.org to register for free and link to Millthorpe School. From there, everything you spend in participating stores will go towards helping boost our budget, plus your own!

You can also find out more by watching this short video.

Year 11 Prom

If your son/daughter in Year 11 would like to attend this year’s prom, tickets should be paid for by the end of today please.

You can see the email re the prom here.

National Tutor Programme

A reminder that if you received an email earlier in the week inviting your child/ren to take part in the National Tutor Programme, responses are required by the end of today. We would be grateful if you could complete the form even if you do not wish your child to participate.

Year 10 GCSE Drama Exam

Would parents/carers of Year 10 GCSE Drama students please note that the Year 10 Scripted Drama Exam will take place in the Drama Hall from 4.00pm on Tuesday 11 May.

SEND outcomes framework

In July 2020 through a series of workshops facilitated by the Council for Disabled Children, York developed the SEND outcomes framework, which was then shared via York Inspirational Kids. In February, a small survey took place which revealed that the framework needed to be shared more effectively and that the outcomes statements needed to be more accessible and better understood.

Parents of children with SEND are invited to a special engagement event on 27 May at 10am, via Zoom. If you would like to take part, please read the full letter here.

Message from North Yorkshire Police (NYP)

PC Elliott, School Liaison Officer (York) from the NYP Partnership Hub, has asked us to circulate the following message to parents/carers:

Over the last few weeks North Yorkshire Police have received an increased number of reports regarding young people congregating on the Little Knavesmire. Incidents include violent disorder, assaults, substance misuse, littering, urinating, anti-social behaviour which is causing distress and sometimes intimidation to the local community. From police attendance, we can confirm that many of the young people encountered are from across the city and not just the local community.

North Yorkshire Police will be increasing patrols to the area and a Dispersal Authority is in place for this weekend. This means that anyone in the area causing antisocial behaviour will be directed to leave the area and if they refuse, will be arrested and prosecuted.

North Yorkshire Police want to prevent further incidents and hope our youth community, schools and parents will support this work.

If parents could encourage their children not to congregate in the area or drop them off at the location, it would be greatly appreciated.

Symptom-free testing

Symptom-free tests are now available for everyone from secondary age upwards in York and the public health team would like as many people as possible to start taking lateral-flow tests regularly. These can be done at home or at a test centre.

Further information re symptom-free tests can be found here.

 

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 9 April 2021

Summer term

We’re looking forward to welcoming everyone back to school on Monday 12 April. Just a few reminders:

  • Term starts with a B week.
  • Full uniform, including appropriate school shoes, is compulsory. Form Tutors will be checking uniform daily and making contact home where there are issues.
  • Students will need a refillable water bottle as stocks of drinks in plastic bottles from the canteen are being phased out.

Face coverings

Earlier this week, the government confirmed that face coverings should continue to be worn in secondary school communal areas and classrooms as a precautionary measure when students return after the Easter break until 17 May at the earliest. The situation will be reviewed at this stage.

Can you please ensure your child(ren) brings a face covering to school every day and that they must not share masks. Disposable masks should not be worn more than once and, therefore, are not recommended.

LFD testing

Prior to the return to school on Monday 12 April, students should take a test as normal on the evening of Sunday 11 April. The results should be reported online as positive, negative or void both on the NHS test and trace self report website and via the school’s Google Form.

If your child receives a positive result, in addition to registering the results online, please email covidresults@millthorpe.southbank.academy so that we have immediate information.

Year 11 Prom

If your son/daughter in Year 11 would like to attend this year’s prom, tickets should be paid for by Friday 16 April.

You can see the email re the prom here.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 26 March 2021

LFT testing at home throughout the Easter holidays – ACTION REQUIRED

This week, the DfE notified us that secondary school students (and staff) should continue to test at home throughout the Easter holidays and into the summer term.

Can you therefore please ensure your child:

  • takes a test at home twice a week (on a Wednesday and Sunday evening) from now until further notice, INCLUDING during the Easter holidays.
  • reports results online as positive, negative or void both on the NHS test and trace self report website and via the school’s Google Form
  • takes a test on Sunday 11 April, before returning to school for the summer term, to find and isolate any positive cases.

Your child has been issued with more testing kits this week.

Positive results
If your child receives a positive result from a Lateral Flow (LFD) test at home before 3.30pm on Sunday 28 March, please email covidresults@millthorpe.southbank.academy to enable us to track and trace close contacts. After that date until the end of the Easter holidays, you only need to report the results via the NHS site and the Google Form.

Uniform

An enormous thank you to the overwhelming majority of students who are in full uniform and school shoes. Form Tutors have been checking uniform throughout the week and making contact home where there are issues. Please can we ask that parents and carers make use of the Easter Holidays to rectify any uniform or footwear issues ready for our return on 12 April.

Thank you for your support.

Summer term

The new term starts on Monday 12 April, with a B week.

Parents forum

Our first virtual parents forum, chaired by Mr Beever, took place last night. We would like to thank those involved for giving up their free time and for sharing their thoughts with us.

The group covered educational ethos, vision and values. These agenda items were selected because the SLT team has identified this period of COVID change as a good point in time to review our provision in a few key areas: pastoral policy, personal development and curriculum intent. The school’s vision must align with any improvements we make to these core strands and we would like all stakeholders to play a part in shaping who we are and what we stand for.

It was lovely to hear parents talk about being at the heart of the community, promoting lifelong learning, offering a range of opportunities that engage and excite our students, providing a warm inclusive environment and recognising each student as an individual. We look forward to gathering further parent voice in the second meeting.

To ensure the group discussion is productive we would like to limit numbers so time is available for everyone to speak. We will however invite a new group of parents to contribute once the current set of parents have had the chance to provide feedback on a range of educational issues. Watch this space!

Year 11 Prom

Parents/carers of Year 11 students should have received an email regarding the planning for the Prom. If your son/daughter would like to attend, could you kindly pay for their ticket over the next few weeks? The deadline is Friday 16 April.

You can see the email here.

Plastic bottles

A quick reminder that as we are now working towards becoming a Plastic Free School, our catering providers, Hutchison Catering, have now started running down stocks of drinks in plastic bottles. It is therefore really important that all students should arrive at school with a reusable water bottle that they can refill as needed.

School garden

Mr Ward is starting a school garden and to help with this, he is selling some herb plants. The herbs are in sets of three plants: Set 1 is Oregano Margeritha + Thymus Compact + Chives Staro and Set 2 Rosemary Miss Jessop + Green Sage + Garlic Chive Neko. Each set is £5.

They are not quite ready yet but will be in about two weeks and are available first-come-first-served. If you are interested please email Mr Ward. No money is required yet, we will let you know when they are ready!

Claiming financial support under the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme

Parents and carers of children who have been advised to self-isolate by their school or by NHS Test and Trace are now able to apply for a Test and Trace Support Payment or discretionary payment of £500, if they meet the eligibility criteria.

The Test and Trace Support Payment scheme ensures that parents receive the financial support they need if they are unable to attend work due to childcare responsibilities.

You can find out more and check the eligibility criteria here.

National Citizen Service opportunities

The National Citizen Service (NCS) are running activities during the summer, some of which are residential. These are open to all Year 11 students. Students listened to a virtual assembly about what is available this week, but if you would like further details please take a look at the letter and flyer in our Careers Bulletin.

Askham Bryan newsletter

The team at Askham Bryan have asked us to share the latest edition of their monthly newsletter: ‘In touch with Askham Bryan’. You can read it here.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 19 March 2021

Remote learning update

We have had a number of students learning from home because they are shielding, self-isolating or have had a positive Covid test. Our teachers will now ensure that all of the lessons, activities and resources for their lessons are available as per your child’s timetable. This means that any student learning from home can follow their school timetable. Similarly, there will now be opportunities for students learning remotely to access live teacher explanation via Google Meet and/or recorded videos and resources from their Google Classroom. If the teacher is teaching via a Google Meet this will be clearly announced in the stream for that lesson.

Like other schools across the city, our priority is our exam classes. We have had a significant number of Year 10 students having to self-isolate, so we have made it our particular focus to provide live teacher explanation via Google Meet and/or recorded videos and resources for this year group.

Our protocols for students, teachers and parents remain the same as they did when we were delivering remote education in full National Lockdown. In addition to these protocols, teachers will ensure:
  • that any Google Meet is displayed on the teacher monitor only and never on the board;
  • that their monitor is angled away from the class;
  • that their camera is either off, on the teacher, or on the board;
  • that no students in school are in the camera shot at any time;
  • that the Google Meet is structured explanation or input.
  • the meet will not be ‘left’ running as a live stream.
Our teachers will set independent work via Google Classroom and try their best to monitor the stream for any questions, but unlike remote learning during lockdown, this will not have the same level of interaction, as our teachers are delivering lessons in their classroom to a physical class of students at the same time.
In some instances, it may be that a lesson is not available in the classroom. This could be due to the practical nature of the lesson or the absence of a teacher, for example. We have provided links to the Oak National Academy lessons for any period where there is not a Millthorpe lesson available. This can be accessed via our website under our Remote Learning offer and Curriculum sections.

Email communications

As a school, when we need to quickly get a message to a large number of people at once, we use email as our primary method of communication with parents/carers. Can we please ask that you check for emails from school on a daily basis? This is vital at the moment when there are numerous important messages to communicate but we would urge you to get into the habit of checking as a matter of course.

Please contact the school office asap if you have changed your email address or you think we may not have the correct address for you.

If you think you are not receiving emails, please do check your spam/junk folder and add Millthorpe to your safe sender list.

Face coverings

Can you please remind your child(ren) that they must bring their own mask to school every day and that they must not share masks. Disposable masks should not be worn more than once and, therefore, are not recommended.

GCSE Support Materials

As you will be aware, exam boards have been asked to provide support materials to help teachers assess students in order to determine their GCSE grade this summer. Some of you will also have heard that the Government has decided to make these materials publicly available, its rationale being that this will prevent certain students gaining an advantage if materials were to be leaked. We were disappointed (as we imagine many schools were) that this decision was announced after we had developed detailed plans for the preparation and assessment of Year 11 students and we understand that some students and parents may be anxious about the effects of this approach.

However, it should be borne in mind that usage is optional and there will be a range of materials from different boards that schools can choose from. Mark schemes and exemplar materials will be kept secure. It is also worth noting that there will be no comparison of grades between schools, nor any norm referencing nor other formulae applied to limit the award of grades at an individual school.

As such, we are still confident that our approach will give students a suitable opportunity to properly demonstrate their knowledge and skills across their exam subjects and we would like to reassure parents that we will do all we can to make sure our students are not disadvantaged in any way.

Plastic bottles

A number of our students are part of a nationwide student initiative called Plastic Free Schools and as part of the project, the Student Council and Climate Change Club have been lobbying for the phasing out of the sale of plastic bottles in the canteen. The benefits of the scheme are threefold:

  • Millthorpe will play its part in reducing plastic waste and litter, thus lessening the environmental impact;
  • It encourages the healthier choice of drinking fresh water;
  • Families can save money at a time when finances are difficult for many.

This environmental initiative is endorsed both by school and our catering providers Hutchison Catering, who have now started running down stocks of drinks in plastic bottles. Can we therefore remind all students that they should arrive at school with a reusable water bottle that they can refill with fresh, cold water from the outdoor sinks as needed.

The Group Chat Challenge

Many young people, and indeed adults, are very attached to their phones and tablets. They can be used really successfully to help people to keep in touch with friends and family and can be a vital source of support. However, they can also place people under enormous pressure to be available 24/7, and this can have a detrimental impact on physical and mental health. It can also have a considerable impact on the amount and quality of sleep that an individual can get, and their ability to concentrate the next day.

Students were asked to consider this and agree a sensible time amongst their friendship groups when they should try to stop sending messages to one another. The findings were interesting: sometimes encouraging, sometimes a little concerning! Following this feedback from students, Mr Baybutt has set students the “Group Chat Challenge”. The reasoning, research and advice has been explained to students in Form Time this week.

Please take a look at the presentation which your child has received this week and ask your child and their friends to rise to the challenge!

If you are a parent or carer who is exasperated by your attempts to get your child to put their phone down and go to sleep, or you share concerns about the amount of time your child spends on their phone, especially at night, this may help. Of course, we are not expecting you to enforce this, but it is just something that may help in your discussions with your child.

Trespassing on the railway

You may remember that we shared a concern with you on 5th February after British Transport Police contacted all York secondary schools to alert them to a worrying increase in the amount of your people trespassing on the railway in York.

Today, we were visited by PC Dan Smith from the British Transport Police to share a specific concern that happened at about 4pm yesterday. A group of teenagers were seen trespassing on the railway line which runs between Hob Moor and Little Hob Moor. BTP were trying to identify the students in question but the images were inconclusive. Whilst this may not be any of our students, it is certainly a route that many of our students will take to travel home so we are concerned.
Please can we urge you to speak to your child if they do walk over Hob Moor on their way to and from school, and remind them about the dangers of trespassing on the railway. The http://www.youvstrain.co.uk/ website may be of use.
Students in Key Stage 3 have already received a PSHE lesson on this topic recently, and one is planned for Key Stage 4 students after Easter. However, this is an immediate concern so please do talk to your child to ensure they are not putting themselves at risk.

Free school meal vouchers – Easter break

If your child(ren) is entitled to free school meals, a voucher for £30 per student will be emailed to you on Friday 26 March to cover the two-week Easter break. City of York Council are funding this provision.

Census 2021 support

As mentioned in last week’s email, the team at York CVS are running a Census Support Centre offering assistance to people who need help with completing the online Census questionnaire.

The service is available until 4 May but the team is offering additional hours over the next week as follows:

  • Saturday 20 March – CLOSED
  • Sunday 21 March (Census Day) – additional opening from 9.30am – 4.00pm
  • Monday 22 – Friday 26 March –  9.30am – 4.00pm

Wheelchair users can book appointments Monday-Thursday from 10.00am – 1.00pm.

To book a face-to-face or call-back appointment, please contact York CVS Census Support on T: 01904 621133 and choose Census Support.

Further information can also be found here.

Speakers for Schools – Insight day with The Biorenewables Energy Centre (University of York)

As part of their Green Skills Week, Speakers for Schools will be running a virtual insight day on Thursday 8 April from 10.00am – 3.30pm with the University of York. More information is available here.

Safeguarding

If you have significant concerns for the welfare of a child, in addition to being able to contact Sophie Johnson during school hours, you may wish to make direct contact with the York MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) on T: 01904 551900, option 3. They operate an out-of-hours service so concerns can be raised with them at any time.

For further information please see the safeguarding link on our school website.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 12 March 2021

Message from the Head of School

It has been lovely to see everyone back in school this week and a delight to see so many students happy and excited to be with their friends and teachers again. Together, we are getting used to some new routines as well as getting back into more familiar ones!

Once again, I would like to thank you for your support as we negotiate our way through these strange times. On the whole, student behaviour has been excellent, wearing face coverings without complaint and respecting yet another set of new rules and instructions. Thank you also for your support in getting your children tested over the past couple of weeks. Most students will now have had their three supervised tests, so we have now sent out a further letter and separate email about LFT testing at home. In addition we have issued LFT home testing kits to those students who were in school today. Students who were not in school today will receive their kits when they return to school. You can see the full letter here.

As always, the team and I are available if you have any concerns or queries about the return to school, so please do contact us. With best wishes for a lovely weekend,

Remote assembly

This week’s assembly, ‘Planning your future’, is delivered by Mr Gillbanks. You can watch it here or on the Pastoral Google Classroom.

Uniform

An enormous thank you to the overwhelming majority of students who have returned to school not only in a really positive and resilient manner, but also in full school uniform. We have gently enquired with a couple of students where there are uniform discrepancies whilst they settle back in, but now that students are settled, we would kindly like to ask all parents/carers to ensure that their child is in full school uniform and school shoes.

We will be contacting parents/carers from Monday if there are any uniform issues and an explanation from home has not been provided.

PE/Games kit

A big thank you for the way in which students have coped with the challenge of PE/Games in the first week back. I understand that buying new PE kit for students who seem to have suddenly grown presents issues, as does returning to PE/Games at school after a break. To help with this, can I draw attention to the following points:

  • Please write a note in your child’s planner should there be an issue with kit, with an indication of when the issue may be resolved;
  • Until Easter, students can wear blue or black leggings/skins WITH their shorts over the top;
  • Tracksuit trousers MUST be from Keal Teamwear.
Thank you
Mr Randall, Head of PE

Donations of school uniform needed for Eco-Laundry

Just a reminder that we are still looking for donations of uniform for our Eco Laundry. If your children have grown during lockdown, we would very much welcome donations of any items of pre-used uniform, including PE kit and school shoes, so that we can support families once again in the summer term.

Please send your donation into school with your son/daughter and ask them to take it to the School Office or give it to Ms Garner-Steel or Ms Andrle.

Year 11 Maths Assessment Information

The mathematics department has created a Google Classroom called “Y11 Maths Assessment Information”. All Year 11 students have been added to the class and this is where we will post the information that students are given about assessments. Currently the assessment schedule and revision lists are available in the class there and we will add to this over the next few weeks.

Potential Year 11 Prom

Please can Year 11 parents/carers look out for a separate email sent earlier today asking for your feedback on the possibility of holding a Prom for the Class of 2021 in July.

Census 2021

Census Day falls on 21 March and for the first time the Office for National Statistics is attempting a digital-first Census, with a target of 75% of returns being completed online.

The team at York CVS are running a Census Support Centre offering assistance to people who need help with completing the Census questionnaire. The service is available from 15 March to 4 May; you can contact York CVS Census Support on T: 01904 621133 and choose Census Support. Phone lines are open Mon-Fri 9.30am-4.00pm. Further information can also be found here.

Census 2021 competition

All students in Years 7-9 will be doing a lesson about the 2021 census over the next week. There is also a national competition about the census being run – all students are eligible to enter and further details can be found on the careers bulletin.

Careers news

If you are interested in an apprenticeship in engineering, please see the careers bulletin for the latest vacancies that have come into school from Derwent Training Association.

If students are interested in a career in the NHS (York Hospital is one of the largest employers in the area) then go to the careers bulletin where staff there have filmed interviews about the many different careers available.

Family Matters courses

Some children will be really happy to be back at school with their friends this week, whereas others will be finding it very difficult – all of them will need some level of help and support from their parents.

The short courses offered by Family Matters York give parents the opportunity to meet other parents and find out that they are not alone; to think about what they are doing with their children; and, in the light of the course material and ideas from other parents, decide if they want to make any changes.

The following courses, all of which are offered online via Zoom, are starting after Easter:

  • Handling Anger in the Family
  • Time Out for Parents – the Teenage Years
  • Time Out for Parents – the Primary Years
  • Time Out for Dads
  • Separated Parents

To book a place or for further information please contact Helen Atkinson on 07393 147259 or email helenatkinson@fmy.org.uk. You can also find more information on the Family Matters website.

Safeguarding

If you have significant concerns for the welfare of a child, in addition to being able to contact Sophie Johnson during school hours, you may wish to make direct contact with the York MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) on T: 01904 551900, option 3. They operate an out-of-hours service so concerns can be raised with them at any time.

For further information please see the safeguarding link on our school website.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 5 March 2021

Return to school – 8 March 2021

We’re looking forward to seeing everyone back at school on Monday morning and, whilst we know some students may be feeling a bit nervous, we hope that everyone is looking forward to getting back into the swing of school life.

Next week is A Week.

Year Group Spaces
A polite reminder that upon arrival at school, after washing their hands, students need to congregate in their year group spaces until their school day begins:

  • 8.45am for Years 7, 10 and 11
  • 9.05am for Years 8 and 9.

The areas are:

  • Year 7 – Tarmac area between the Gym and the Main Hall
  • Year 8 – Tennis Courts next to the Main Drive
  • Year 9 – Concrete area at the top of the Main Drive (on the left)
  • Year 10 – Tarmac area outside D Block or the Front Field
  • Year 11 – B Block yard or the Library

On Monday, all students (including Years 8 and 9) should go straight to their Form Room at the start of their school day, ensuring that they are wearing a mask as they enter the school building.

Face coverings
A few parents have been in touch to find out more about the changes to the guidance around face coverings in school. We have prepared a brief Q&A document, which you can find here.

Equipment – bring what you have!
Please can students bring the equipment that they usually bring to school on Monday – planner, stationery, Teaching and Learning packs (plastic wallet with mini-whiteboards and pens etc) and their Year Group coloured badge. If your child has misplaced any of these items, please tell them not to worry but it would help us if they were able to bring as much as they can.

Remote assembly

This week’s assembly, ‘Study Hard, Stay Healthy’, is delivered by Ms Andrle.

You can download it here or watch it on the Pastoral Google Classroom.

Covid-19 testing

Thank you to everyone who came in to school this week to take their first Covid-19 test before the return to school next week. It was really lovely to see everyone! We were hugely impressed by our students’ exemplary behaviour, mature attitude and the fact that almost everyone remembered to bring a face covering!

As a reminder, in agreement with the York Public Health Team, the second and third tests should be taken at the public testing sites at either:

  • York University
  • York St John University
  • York Stadium complex

Appointments must be booked online before you go to the site.

The second test should be booked within 3-5 days of the first test at school and the third test should be booked 3-5 days after the second. For students who took their test at school this week, dates for the second and third tests are as follows:

Second test Third test
Year 11 Sunday 7 March Thursday 11 or Friday 12 March
Year 10 Monday 8 or Tuesday 9 March Friday 12 or Saturday 13 March
Year 9 Monday 8 or Tuesday 9 March Friday 12 or Saturday 13 March
Year 8 Tuesday 9 or Wednesday 10 March Saturday 13 or Sunday 14 March
Year 7 Tuesday 9 or Wednesday 10 March Saturday 13 or Sunday 14 March

PE/Games arrangements from 8 March until Easter

We’re looking forward to seeing everyone next week and can’t wait to start PE and Games lessons again! Please see below for details of what your child should bring and where they should get changed.

Years 7, 8 and 9

Teacher Change in Kit required for PE (indoors) Kit required for Games (outdoors)
Miss Lansdall Sports Hall PE kit, indoor trainers Games kit, boots, shinpads (on AGP)
Miss Watts Gym PE kit, outdoor trainers Games kit plus trainers
Mr Randall Sports Hall PE kit Games kit (on AGP)
Mr Boothman Gym PE kit Games kit (on grass)

Years 10 and 11

Teacher Change in Kit requirements
Miss Lansdall Gym Indoor PE kit PLUS outdoor trainers
Miss Watts Sports Hall Indoor PE kit
Mr Randall Sports Hall PE kit (in gym)
Mr Boothman Gym Games kit (on AGP)

If you have any queries, please email the relevant teacher – just click on the links below:

Year 11 arrangements for GCSEs

We will be speaking to all Year 11 students early next week to advise them of our approach to GCSE grading in this exceptional year and to give them a clear picture of how the remainder of their time with us will be organised. We will share these details with parents next week.

Eco Laundry – donations of all sizes needed!

Our Eco Laundry remained open during January and February so that we could continue to supply warm clothes to families who needed these and school uniform ready for our return to school next week.

We offer Eco Laundry uniform firstly to families who are entitled to or who have previously received Free School Meals, as well as to any other families experiencing financial hardship. When we have excess stock, we are able to broaden this offer to all families but at the moment our stock of pre-used uniform is very low, with only the smallest sizes left. If your children have grown during lockdown, we would very much welcome donations of pre-used uniform before Easter so that we are able to offer it to all families again in the Summer term.

If you are able to donate any school uniform (including PE kit), please send it into school with your son/daughter and ask them to take it to the School Office or give it to Ms Garner-Steel or Ms Andrle.

Police cadets

If you are thinking of joining the police once you finish in education, being a Police Cadet can be a good introduction to the career. Police Cadet recruitment is now open to all young people aged between 14 and 18 who live in York or the surrounding areas. Applications close at 9am on 19 March.

Full details are available here or on the Careers Bulletin page.

“I’m a celebrity, get me out of here” PE fitness challenge – the results!

A massive thank you and well done to all the girls that have taken part in the ‘I’m a celebrity’ fitness challenge over the last four weeks. They have all worked incredibly hard and should be proud of their efforts. In total, the girls have achieved 7,340 stars which is an amazing achievement.

The winning classes and house can be seen below. Well done once again to Saxons who now have a clean sweep throughout the challenge.

Year  7n 7s 8n 8s 9n 9s
Week 1 EML  957 873 592 753 344 242
Week 1 SEW 852 802 717 323 56 61
Roman Saxon  Viking 
Total 1,679 3,551 2,110

Well done to everyone who took part and thank you for your hard work!

Safeguarding

If you have significant concerns for the welfare of a child, in addition to being able to contact Sophie Johnson during school hours, you may wish to make direct contact with the York MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) on T: 01904 551900, option 3. They operate an out-of-hours service so concerns can be raised with them at any time.

For further information please see the safeguarding link on our school website.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 26 February 2021

A message from the Head of School

As you will no doubt be aware, on Monday the Government announced its plans for the return of all students to school. We will be delighted to welcome everyone back and we are busily getting everything in place for a successful return. Here are the key messages:

School opens for all students on Monday 8 March. Attendance will be mandatory from this date and normal rules of attendance will apply.

The timings of the school day will be the same as last term. A reminder of the timings can be found here.

Timetables, teaching groups and seating plans will also continue unchanged.

On the first day back, there will be an extended form time for all students starting at 8.45am for Years 7, 10 and 11 and at 9.05am for Years 8 and 9. All students should go straight to their form rooms on Monday morning.

Initial COVID-19 testing of students using self-administered lateral flow devices will take place next week in school on Wednesday 3rd, Thursday 4th and Friday 5th March. More details about testing are set out below.

Most of the same hygiene and social distancing rules that were in place in December will continue, including handwashing/sanitising; staggered starts, breaks, lunches and finishes; one-way systems; year group bubbles and fixed seating plans to minimise contact between students; and social distancing between adults and children and other adults. Ventilation is given greater priority in the latest guidance and we’ll be ensuring our site has good airflow.

The government and Public Health York have enhanced the requirements regarding face coverings to include students wearing face coverings in classrooms as well as other indoor spaces except when they are eating or drinking or engaged in strenuous activities such as PE. All students will be required to wear face coverings except those with a medical exemption. Adults will wear face coverings in communal indoor spaces and for any short periods in the classroom where the usual 2m distancing cannot be maintained.

More information about the government’s policy on face coverings and exemptions can be found here.

Students are asked to bring the equipment they were provided with last term, i.e. whiteboard, whiteboard rubber, scissors. Any pens or glue sticks that have run out will be replaced by form tutors. Students missing any of the other items can replace with their own or purchase from their form tutor for a small charge.

Normal uniform rules will apply from 8 March. A reminder of our uniform expectations can be found here. Parents and carers are respectfully asked to support the school by ensuring that their child(ren) comply with all of the uniform requirements so that we can all focus on making the return to school as successful as possible. Any badged items of uniform can now be bought from Keal Teamwear using their delivery or click and collect services. Collections are available from 1 March as follows: Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday; 10.00am – 1.00pm.

We have sent a survey direct to all students to check on their wellbeing and help us provide support to those who need it. There will be a range of measures in place to address any needs and concerns. A copy of the survey can also be found on the Health, Wellbeing and Pastoral Care Google Classroom or you can access it here. Please can responses be submitted by 4pm on Tuesday 2 March in order for us to plan our interventions effectively.

A full copy of the the latest operating guidance for schools from the DfE can be found here.

Lateral Flow Testing
As summarised above, the government expects all students to undertake three supervised tests before beginning a twice-weekly regime of home testing, with students able to attend lessons in school if the first test is negative.

We will be testing students on site at school next Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. This will allow all students with negative test results to attend lessons from Monday morning. If you have provided consent, we will contact you with a time slot for your child to attend for testing on one of those days. Students will be invited to attend in small groups and strict social distancing will be maintained at all times. Students will be given instructions so that they can obtain the sample themselves by swabbing their throat and nose. Once the test is complete, students will be dismissed to go straight home. If the test result is positive, the school will contact students/parents straight away. Negative results (as well as confirmation of positive results) will be sent by email or text from the NHS testing site. Parents travelling with their child to the test are asked not to come onto the school site and not to congregate outside the school while waiting for them to leave. Students do not need to wear school uniform to attend the testing.

We are currently in consultation with the York Public Health team regarding the best way to deliver the second and third supervised tests and we expect to be able to update you in this regard by the end of the weekend.

If you have not already done so, to register your consent for your child to take part in testing at school next week, please follow this link.

GCSEs Summer 2021
The government and Ofqual have released their guidance on the grading process for GCSEs this summer. In summary, grades will be based on teachers’ judgement, taking into account a range of evidence that may include work already completed, mock exam results, homework or in-class tests. Teachers may also use questions from exam boards, largely based on past papers but this isn’t compulsory. Results are expected to be available on 12 August. We are still considering the full implications of the plans and we will be in touch with Year 11 students and parents in the near future with more details. You can read an article from the Government’s Chief Regulator here.

Parent Governors
We are delighted to announce that Janet Bennett and Emma Hughes have been elected to join our governing body as parent representatives following the recent election.

With best wishes

Gemma Greenhalgh

Remote assembly

This week’s assembly, entitled ‘To Infinity and Beyond’, is delivered by Mr Bates.

You can download it here.

Volunteers

Many thanks to everyone who has contacted us to volunteer to help with the testing in school next week. We will be in touch shortly if your support is needed.

National Careers Week: 1-6 March 2021

Next week is National Careers Week. It will obviously be a bit different this year because most students are not in school, however there are things your child can participate in. Please see the attached letter for an overview.

NCW have published a useful guide to careers and young people which can be downloaded here. They are also running a Virtual Careers Fair for the whole of next week – to access it simply go to www.ncw2021.co.uk.

Millthorpe Careers Newsletter
To coincide with National Careers Week, the spring edition of the Millthorpe Careers Newsletter is now available. It can be downloaded from the Careers page on the school website – just scroll to the bottom of the page to see the links.

NHS Careers Competition
The NHS are running a careers competition to mark National Careers Week. Students can work on their own or in groups of up to four and there are Amazon vouchers up for grabs. For more details please see the Careers Bulletin board.

Virtual work experience
A reminder that students in Year 10 (and in some cases Year 9 as well) have access to virtual work experience placements through the Speakers for Schools organisation. At the moment they are organising placements in green industries as varied as creative design, IT, engineering and architecture. Go to www.s4snextgen.org and search for “Green Skills Week 2021”. Further details are also available on the Careers Bulletin board.

Post-16 events for students in Years 10 & 11

The team at Bishop Burton College are running a series of subject Taster Sessions for students in Years 10 & 11. The sessions, which all run from 4.30-5.30pm, will allow prospective students to get a taste of life at the college. A full list of all the available sessions can be found here.

Askham Bryan College is holding a virtual Information Evening on Tuesday 2 March from 5.00-6.30pm for students to find out about the courses on offer. Information will also be available on accommodation, travel, finance and scholarships. They are also running an Open Morning on Saturday 20 March from 10.00am-1.00pm. To find out more and book a place click here.

North Yorkshire Youth Commission

The North Yorkshire Youth Commission (NYYC) is currently looking for young people in Year 9 or above to join them as members.

The NYYC supports and informs the work of the Police and Fire service in York and North Yorkshire and therefore the decisions it makes have a direct impact on the lives of people who live in the local area. If your child would like to join, please read the guidance notes and then complete the application form and consent form which can both be found here.

To apply, students will need the school to endorse their application – please contact Mr Noble at school to do this. The closing date for applications is 19 March 2021.

Meetings re DofE Awards

A reminder to parents/carers of our Year 10 and 11 ‘DofEers’ – could you please ask your son/daughter, if they have not already done so, to sign up to the Google DofE classroom using the code ngb52gv. Please do let us know if you have any issues with this.

Once they have signed up we would like to have a meeting with Year 10s on Wednesday 3 March and Year 11s on Thursday 4 March, both at 3.00pm. The meetings will last for approximately 15 minutes.
Please do encourage your child to sign up and attend so that we can all start to get things sorted with regards to the award.
As usual any issues please email either Mr Ward or Miss Frankland.

Calendar dates

An early iteration of the school calendar for this academic year showed a training day next Friday – please note there will NOT be a training day on Friday 5 March.

Face coverings on First Buses

As students are due to return to school on 8 March may we politely remind you that face coverings must be worn on all buses and that social distancing rules should be adhered to.

There will be Covid Marshalls travelling on the buses who will kindly remind students should they not follow these rules.

“I’m a celebrity, get me out of here” PE fitness challenge – the results!

A big thank you and well done to all the girls that have taken part in the ‘I’m a celebrity’ fitness challenge this week. In total, the girls have achieved 6,936 stars which is a fantastic achievement.

The winning classes and house can be seen below – well done once again Saxons. Vikings and Romans, maybe next week could be your week!

Well done to everyone who took part and for your hard work!

Safeguarding

If you have significant concerns for the welfare of a child, in addition to being able to contact Sophie Johnson during school hours, you may wish to make direct contact with the York MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) on T: 01904 551900, option 3. They operate an out-of-hours service so concerns can be raised with them at any time.

For further information please see the safeguarding link on our school website.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 12 February 2021

A message from the Head of School

As we break for the half term holiday, I would like to take the opportunity to thank you once again for all your support. This has to have been one of the toughest starts to a new year that many of us have ever faced and it is without doubt that there is still a great deal of uncertainty. However, with the numbers of people receiving their vaccinations increasing every day and the number of Covid cases decreasing, it does feel as if there is light at the end of the tunnel.

We do not yet know when the majority of students will return to school, but we do hope it will be soon. In the meantime, please encourage your children to take some time out from school work (and their screens!) and I hope you all have the opportunity to enjoy some rest and relaxation. We look forward to seeing/hearing everyone back in lessons on Monday 22 February.

With best wishes

Gemma Greenhalgh

Remote assembly

This week’s assembly is delivered by Ms Greenhalgh, Head of School.

You can view it here.

Free school meal vouchers

City of York Council is funding the provision of free school meal vouchers for the half term break next week. Vouchers will be distributed on Monday 15 February.

Social media use

Many of our students use various social media platforms and, when used appropriately, they can be really useful ways for young people to stay in contact with one another during this difficult lockdown period.

Recently, there have been a number of high profile cases where famous people have been subjected to abhorrent abuse on social media and this has prompted us to ask you to discuss your child’s social media usage with them and remind them to ensure that they are using it appropriately.

Please can you take the time to have a conversation with your child about how they use social media? Are they willing to show you their social media profiles? If they are reluctant, why is that? Are they clear about “digital footprints” or “digital tattoos” and that once something is posted online, even if it is later deleted, there is a trail of it? Do they know that future education providers or employers may check their social media for inappropriate or unacceptable content? And also, that any form of abuse online can be reported to the police?

Whilst we hope, and are confident that the vast majority of our students use social media appropriately, we felt that this might be a good time for you to re-instigate this conversation with them in light of the recent high profile cases in the media.

Parents’ Forum

In pursuit of ever better education provision, Millthorpe School would like to invite interested parents/carers to join an online forum.

Discussion will cover a range of topics and be focused on positive and sustainable school improvement. You’ll be aware that we have asked parents to complete a number of surveys so that we can fine tune our practice. Whilst these surveys give us valuable insight, even the open-ended questions only provide parents a limited opportunity to share qualitative feedback. The forum will allow us to enter into more meaningful two-way communication and strengthen links between parents and the school.
If you would like to take part, please click here to complete the Google Form to register your interest.
We’re hoping there will be high levels of interest and you’ll understand that we may need to limit numbers to allow for effective and productive discussion. We would also like the group to broadly represent our student body, so we will aim to have representation across different year groups, for example. Other than that, admission will be on a first come, first served basis. We apologise in advance if there are any interested parents we are not able to accommodate at this time: we hope to be able to invite you to participate at a later date as part of a new group.

Parent Governor Elections

Each of our families should have received an email this evening inviting you to take part in the election of two parent governors via an online ballot. You can cast your votes up until Wednesday 24 February.

Any questions, please email a.collins@millthorpe.southbank.academy. Please bear in mind response times may be longer than usual during the half term holiday.

Year 11 Leavers’ Hoodies

Year 11 Leavers’ hoodies are now available to order directly from Keal Teamwear. Please click here to place your order before the deadline of Friday 26 March 2021.

For any queries please contact Keal Teamwear at enquiries@keal-teamwear.com

“I’m a celebrity, get me out of here” PE fitness challenge – the results!

A big thank you and well done to all the girls that have taken part in the ‘I’m a celebrity’ fitness challenge this week. The challenge has ramped up this week with the girls completing two sets of seven exercises to earn stars for their class and house. In total, the girls have achieved 6,719 stars, which is fantastic!

The winning classes and house can be seen below – well done once again Saxons!

Well done to everyone who took part. The next fitness challenge will start after half term.

Apprenticeship vacancies

Specialist engineering firm, Tadweld, is looking to recruit two apprentices to join its Tadcaster team after a record year of growth. Further information can be found here.

Toilet Roll Challenge 2021

And finally for a fun toilet roll challenge from Mr Randall.

This is a city and North Yorkshire wide challenge which runs until 1 March to give all pupils the chance to take part before, during and after half term. To see what your challenge is, click here or watch the video.

To record your results, simply go to this website and log in using the details below:

School: Millthorpe School
Username: Millthorpe8
Password: e7f2657bb7e1

You can also check how you are doing in comparison with others, by clicking here.

Best of luck!

Safeguarding

If you have significant concerns for the welfare of a child, in addition to being able to contact Sophie Johnson during school hours, you may wish to make direct contact with the York MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) on T: 01904 551900, option 3. They operate an out-of-hours service so concerns can be raised with them at any time.

For further information please see the safeguarding link on our school website.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 5 February 2021

Remote Assembly

This week’s assembly is delivered by Ms Simpson and focuses on Mental Health Awareness Week.

Watch this week’s assembly here.

Remote learning parent survey

We would like to get your feedback once again on our remote learning provision and the quality of online teaching. Please speak to your child/ren about their online learning experience over this last week and then complete a form for each child at the school (if you wish).

We are very grateful for your time in completing this form, which will help us improve future provision.

Take the survey now.

Submitting work

We understand that handing in work that has been set online can be quite confusing, especially if it isn’t produced within Google Classroom. However, it is possible to hand in all types of work through Google Classroom. This is the best way to do it as it ensures that it arrives with the teacher successfully and in a timely manner, and makes it easier for teachers to keep all the work from each class in the same place.

Google Classroom has the function to upload all file types, including photographs of students’ off-screen work. We would be very grateful if you could go through the attached guide on how to submit work in Google Classroom with your child and would respectfully ask that all work is submitted in this way wherever possible.

Mr Beever has also produced a short video for parents called ‘Google Classroom Explained.’ You can watch this here.

GCSEs – summer 2021

Following the DfE consultation on how GCSE, AS and A Level grades should be awarded in summer 2021, we are now awaiting the outcome. We will issue guidance to parents/carers and Year 11 students as soon as the information is released by the DfE.

Year 11 Virtual Parents’ Evening

A reminder that the Year 11 Virtual Parents’ Evening will take place on Tuesday 9 February from 4.00-6.35pm. Appointments must be made online before the deadline of 11.55pm on Sunday 7 February.

Click here to go to the appointment booking system.

Year 9 options choices

Please can all Year 9 students complete and return their Key Stage 4 options forms by next Friday, 12 February.

Parent Governor vacancies

You may recall that we contacted you last term inviting parents to put themselves forward to fill the two vacancies for parent governors we currently have. Due to COVID, this process was put on hold but we are now in a position to go ahead using a secure online balloting system. Anyone who was nominated first time around will be included but if there are any other parents who would be willing to put themselves forward, please let us know by replying to this email. Responses need to be by Wednesday 10 February please, as the ballot will be sent out next Friday.

Increase in trespassing/vandalism on the railway

Schools in York have been contacted by Network Rail to ask for their assistance in highlighting an increase in trespass and vandalism on the railway network, which involves young people of secondary school age in York. There is no suggestion that this is any of your students, but they have asked that we share this concern with you as these incidents have been “alarming and dangerous.” Please can you take a look at this dedicated website You vs. Train which is designed to inform young people about the dangers of trespassing on the railway, and includes real life stories. Please share this and discuss it with your child.

Ordinarily, Network Rail would come into school with the British Transport Police to talk to students directly but as this is not possible at present, we would urge you to ensure that you know where your child is and that they have been given this reminder about the dangers of trespassing on the railway.
We are in discussions with Network Rail about how we can further highlight this concern to our students.

National Apprenticeship Week

Next week is National Apprenticeship Week so many providers and organisations are holding events and advertising vacancies throughout the week. If your child is thinking about moving on to an apprenticeship scheme when they leave Millthorpe, please see the Careers Bulletin for further details. Links to all of the events and guidance below, will be accessible from the bulletin.

  • Yorkshire Water are running a number of virtual events for students who might want to apply to do an apprenticeship with them.
  • Derwent Training will be holding an Open Event on Thursday 11 February from 5.00pm. The event will give students the opportunity to learn more about Derwent Training and the Engineering Apprenticeships they offer. They will also get to hear from current and former apprentices, as well as having a virtual tour of the specialist engineering training facilities.
  • For those interested in an apprenticeship in construction, there is a free online event for school leavers and their parents on Thursday 11 February 5.30-6.30pm.
  • There will be a Facebook Live Apprenticeship Q&A on City of York Council’s Facebook page on Wednesday 10 February from 5-6pm. The panel will be chaired by Councillor Waller and there will be representation from York College, Askham Bryan College, YH Training Services, CYC, York St John University (representing the HE sector and higher/degree level apprenticeships), NYBEP and Simpson York Ltd.
  • The NHS are also hosting a Facebook Live session on Monday 8 February at midday. Abi Changer from the NHS Health Careers team will be live to provide a snapshot of all things relating to NHS apprenticeships. (Students might have to be ten minutes late to this one as it starts at the tail end of Period Three.)

Success Beyond School

InvestIN has launched a series of “Success Beyond School” events for this term. They are free-of-charge interactive online seminars designed to help parents supercharge their children’s career potential.

You can access free expert advice on guiding your child to a successful career. Find out more and register here.

Applying to York College

If any of our Year 11 students need a little extra support with their application to York College, the Admissions Team have shared their ‘How to Apply’ videos with us – click the links below to view:

National Horseracing College

The National Horseracing College in Doncaster is holding a Virtual Open Morning on Saturday 13 February, starting at 10am – for more information please see the Careers Bulletin on the school website.

Mental health support

Thanks to our partnership with other local schools through the Independent State School Partnership (ISSP), the team at Bootham School have kindly agreed that we can invite all Millthorpe parents (not just parents of children involved with ISSP) to share content from their Saturday morning parents’ sessions.

Dick Moore, educator and mental health campaigner delivered a session last week, called ‘Dancing in the Rain’ which was described as not only important but empowering for parents. You can watch the recorded session here.

This Saturday at 10.00am, Michael Grose, educator, author, founder and director of Parenting Matters, will deliver a session on ‘Helping your child with anxiety’. Please do feel free to join here.

With thanks to Bootham School for sharing.

Supporting your child during lockdown

The Royal College of Occupational Therapists has put together Ten Top Tips for parents and carers to help you support your child(ren) during lockdown.

Please also remind your child to have a look at the “Health, Wellbeing and Pastoral Care” Google Classroom for more advice, websites and apps. This is updated regularly.

Support with food

York CVS and Healthwatch York have compiled a list of all the places where families can get food during lockdown if they are struggling, without needing Food Bank vouchers.

View the full list here.

THC-infused illegal sweets in circulation

North Yorkshire Police have contacted all schools in York as they are concerned about THC (cannabis) infused sweets, of which they have seen an increase across the city. They have asked all schools to share this information with parents.

The sweets are professionally packaged and appear to be normal sweets. There are two types – CBD Edibles and THC Edibles.

CBD Edibles are legal (as the THC-hallucinogenic has been extracted leaving trace amounts) but THC edibles are classed as a controlled substance and consequently are not legal.

North Yorkshire Police have shared images of some of the THC sweets in circulation in the city and have asked us to share this with parents and carers so that you are aware. Please click here to see the images.

The THC sweets are labelled as such, and some have a cannabis leaf on the packaging.

The amount of cannabis/THC in the products can vary and sometimes other harmful drugs are added too. The effects of consuming edibles are unpredictable, and it can be very easy to accidentally take a larger dose than intended.

North Yorkshire Police are dealing with this issue proactively but also wanted parents and carers to be vigilant.

DofE Awards – message from Mr Ward

We are still somewhat in limbo with regards to DofE but there are things that we and the students can be doing: so it’s time for us to be positive and make a start to get things finished off for your children and at least have some interaction with them.

We have set up a DofE class (on Google Classroom), and I would ask you to encourage your child to sign up via the class code ngb52gv. If you have any issues with signing up please do let me know. This will allow us to share information and ideas with the students.

We are planning to have a Google Meet with the students next Thursday 11 February at 3.00pm, again if you could encourage your child to attend this would be great.

If you have any questions or queries please email Mr Ward.

“I’m a celebrity, get me out of here” PE fitness challenge – the results!

A big thank you and well done to all the girls that have taken part in the “I’m a celebrity” fitness challenge this week! The girls have been completing circuit exercises in PE lessons this week to earn stars for the amount of time taken on each exercise. In total, the girls have achieved 4,832 stars which is a fantastic achievement.

The winning classes and house can be seen below – well done Saxons!

The results for Year 9 will be announced next week. Well done all – the next fitness challenge will start next week.

LT on the BBC

Congratulations and the very best of luck to Year 8 student Louie Theaker-Spencer (known as LT to friends!) who has landed a role in a CBBC television programme, Jamie Johnson. Louie travels to Wales next week to undergo a fortnight of isolation with his fellow cast and will begin filming in a couple of weeks.

Louie has worked incredibly hard to achieve this breakthrough and everyone at Millthorpe School is so proud that one of our students will be starring on our television screens in the near future.
“Break a leg, LT!”

Safeguarding

If you have significant concerns for the welfare of a child, in addition to being able to contact Sophie Johnson during school hours, you may wish to make direct contact with the York MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) on T: 01904 551900, option 3. They operate an out-of-hours service so concerns can be raised with them at any time.

For further information please see the safeguarding link on our school website.

WEEKLY EMAIL Friday 29 January 2021

Learning Conduct

All students and parents are familiar with the Millthorpe School Learning Conduct expectations. We are very impressed with how our students have transitioned to home-learning, so we have adapted our Learning Conduct grid to suit the academic ‘new normal’. This will allow us to celebrate student success and report on remote learning progress after February half term.

The principles have remained the same, but you will be able to see how our Gold Standard descriptors now link to the remote world of education rather than the physical classroom. All of the teachers are nominating students displaying this Gold Learning standard each week and we are sending letters home to parents.
As with the conduct for learning in school, the descriptors are a ‘best fit’ model and we do not necessarily expect students to be meeting all elements in the description or that they will be achieved in every lesson. They are simply to exemplify the characteristics of excellent learners over time.

To help us report accurately on progress, please support your child as they submit key assessed pieces of work (KAPs). For guidance on how to do this within Google Classroom (whether that be a Google Document or a picture or audio file) please see the video support on the website.

Remote Assembly

This week’s assembly is delivered by Mr Beever, Deputy Headteacher. You can view it here.

Pastoral Support on Google Classroom

Every student has been added to a “Health, Wellbeing and Pastoral Care” Google Classroom (either Key Stage 3 or 4). We update this regularly with tips and advice to help students manage during this period of lockdown and would be very grateful if you could ensure that your child(ren) is aware of it and has had a look. They might not need it immediately, but they might as lockdown continues.

This week, in addition to Mr Beever’s assembly, we have uploaded:
  • A weekly tip from the School Wellbeing Service
  • A planning sheet that guides students in planning a positive day
  • An excellent booklet which helps students to cope with lockdown
  • Tips and advice from Childline.

Protocols for online learning

Thank you to those who have already completed the short form to confirm acceptance of the school’s protocols for online learning. If you haven’t yet, could we ask that you do so by following this link as soon as possible please. This helps us to ensure that children can continue to learn in a safe and suitable environment while accessing lessons from home.

If you have any questions, please contact us.

This week’s assembly theme is “5 steps to wellbeing” so we hope that our students, and their families, find this useful.

Homework

Under current circumstances, we will not be directing students to do work or revision outside lesson times. We don’t think this is appropriate whilst students are accessing all their learning online during the day. They can choose to revise for assessments or carry out extension work if they wish.

Chromebooks

We have received some enquiries from parents/carers about providing Chromebooks for students who are having difficulties accessing online learning for one reason or another. The Chromebooks we have been provided with by the DfE are intended specifically for disadvantaged children and we have allocated them accordingly. (‘Disadvantaged children’ are defined as those who meet the criteria for pupil premium funding; with an EHCP for special educational needs and disabilities; who are receiving statutory local authority support from a social worker.)

We have very limited supplies of other devices available for use by other students, mainly those kindly donated to the school. Given the recent announcement that schools won’t begin to open more widely until 8 March at the earliest, it may be worth considering purchasing a device for your child if you feel you are in a position to do so and you haven’t already done so. New Chromebooks start from around £180 and refurbished devices can be even less: if your child got three and a half years’ use from it, that would equate to less than £1 per week. Any Chromebook or laptop should be fine for accessing Google Classroom.

If your child is having difficulty accessing online learning and you are struggling financially, please do contact the school and we will see how we may be able to help.
We are still very pleased to receive donations of any suitable devices that are no longer needed.

School supplies

You may have read in the press this week that there is a campaign underway to provide materials such as stationery to children during lockdown to help them complete schoolwork at home. As some of you will know, we wrote to all our pupil premium eligible families last week to offer them supplies of stationery as well as other essential items we are able to provide such as period products and winter clothing. You can read the full letter here.

If your child is not pupil premium but you are having financial difficulties and would benefit from anything we have to offer, please contact the school office.

Post-16 events for Year 11 students

Askham Bryan College is hosting an Open Morning For Year 11 students on Saturday 30 January from 10.00am-1.00pm. Any interested students can book to join the event via the College’s What’s On page. You can also see Askham Bryan College’s latest newsletter here.

York College is holding its next Virtual Open Event on Thursday 11 February from 5.30–8.00pm. Students can register online by visiting the York College website.

Family Matters – online courses

The team at Family Matters York are offering a range of online courses, starting after half-term. These include:

  • Time Out for Parents – the Teenage Years
  • Time Out for Parents – the Early Years
  • Time Out for Parents – the Primary Years
  • Handling Anger in the Family

You can find out more about the courses here. To book a place please contact Helen Atkinson on 07393 147259 or email helenatkinson@fmy.org.uk

The Week Junior

Due to the current restrictions The Week Junior magazine is available online and can be accessed via the following link: magazine.theweekjunior.co.uk. To log in, select ‘Have you got a voucher code?’ and enter the code: TWJ2678tuv

Safeguarding

If you have significant concerns for the welfare of a child, in addition to being able to contact Sophie Johnson during school hours, you may wish to make direct contact with the York MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) on T: 01904 551900, option 3. They operate an out-of-hours service so concerns can be raised with them at any time.

For further information please see the safeguarding link on our school website.