17th July 2020 update from Mr Knowles

Guidance for Students and Parents for Return to School in September 2020

The following guidance has been created using current government advice. However, it is subject to change at any time due to the ‘conditionality’ of the COVID19 pandemic and the need for weekly review once operational.



  • All students are expected to attend school starting from Wednesday 2nd September 2020.
  • All students must wear full uniform in line with guidance previously sent out.
  • All students must bring their own equipment in line with guidance previously sent out.
  • To support the principle of social distancing, students will enter school at staggered times and this will impact morning tutor time. Students may enter the school grounds using their most convenient gate, but ensuring that they socially distance whilst entering. Students are to enter the school building at the nearest external entrance to their tutor room. Tutors will advise students on this. The timings for the Sep-Oct half-term (reversed in Nov-Dec) will be:
  • Year 7 & 9 (8:40am)
  • Year 11 (8:50am)
  • Year 8 & 10 (9am)
  • Students should not come to school earlier that the stated time. Where this is unavoidable (e.g. siblings) students will be asked to wait outside (in new temporary covered spaces) until their start time. There will be no social gathering allowed and no food will be available from the dining hall.
  • All students must wash hands on entry to, and exit from, the school (or apply hand gel alternative) following the current government guidance.
  • Although Tutor time is reduced in length for some students it will still contain a combination of pastoral support and delivery of Personal, Social and Health Education.
  • House group assemblies will be delivered virtually (either live or pre-recorded) and accessed by tutor groups in a morning.  Separate year group assemblies will be scheduled in the hall accordingly (pre-recorded during Covid19 restrictions).
  • There will be mentoring / peer reading (Year 7 with 9, and 8 with 10).
  • Period 1 and 2 run on normal timings and students will be instructed to transition around school in the most efficient manner. To support this there will be external movement as well as internal movement. All staircases and end of block/yard external doors will be usable to the general student population. Tutors and teachers will advise students as to their best route from their room to the next location.
  • Students will transition to break time at the normal time and have dedicated areas they can access. There will be no food served at break. Outdoor areas will be used (with temporary roof cover).
  • Years 7 & 9 will use yard B/C (between Art & Design and English) and use the upstairs toilet facilities
  • Years 8 & 10 will use yard C/D (between English and Humanities) and use the pastoral corridor toilets downstairs
  • Year 11 will use the tennis court area and use the toilets downstairs in the pastoral corridor
  • Period 3 and Period 4 will have some disturbance depending on what year group students are in.
  • We will be splitting lunch into 3 sittings.
  • Year 7 & 9 to transition out of Period 3 at 12:10pm (15 minutes early) to collect lunch and go to their designated area (Yard B/C or Main Hall if wet). They start period 4 at 1pm.
  • Year 11 as normal in terms of timings and they collect lunch and go to the tennis court area (Sports Hall if wet). Year 11s may also be allowed into the library for quiet study only. They start period 4 at 1pm.
  • Year 8 & 10 have ‘free time’ first (only on Yard C/D) and then are allowed to collect lunch at end of lunchtime to take back to Yard C/D (Dining Hall /Drama if wet). Their period 4 starts at 1:15pm.
  • This split lunch system will be reversed at half term so that the same lessons are not affected throughout the term.

The diagram below shows the timings:

School Day Timings September 2020

(Please click image to enlarge)

  • Period 5 is ‘normal’ start for all but there is a staggered dismissal to encourage social distancing on departure.
  1. 2:50pm Year 7 & 9
  2. 3:00pm Year 8 & 10
  3. Year 11 (period 6 extended day 4 days a week and on a Tuesday leave at 3pm)
  • Staff will assist students leaving the school via the nearest external exit. Staff will walk out with students and encourage hand hygiene through sanitiser or gel.

Teaching and Learning

  • Desks in classrooms will be front facing and spread out as much as logistically possible. Seating plans will be altered to reflect these changes. Students must stay in their seat at all times and seating plans will only be changed when it is essential for the student’s progress.
  • Teachers will remain at the front of the classroom and be 2m away from students for as much time as possible. Exceptions include, but are not limited to, giving out cleaning wipes/tissues, issuing reward stamps, giving specific guidance to an individual student. Where these are done, teachers will move on as soon as possible.
  • Where possible, exercise books and resources will be either out on desks or available for students to pick up as they enter the classroom.
  • All occupied desks and tops of chairs must be cleaned at the end of every lesson with an antibacterial wipe; these will be provided in all classrooms. One student per desk can collect a wipe at the end of the lesson or the classroom teacher may choose to hand the wipes out. Wipes will be placed in the bin as students exit the room. New, additional bins will be provided.
  • All teachers will clean any surfaces they have touched at the beginning and end of the day, or if they know their room is to be used by another member of staff.
  • Teachers will not stand at the door to welcome students into the classroom in the usual manner, they must position themselves inside the classroom and observe social distancing.
  • Tissues will be provided for all classrooms and students will be encouraged to use these for coughs/sneezes followed by hand sanitisation both verbally and through notices.
  • Any extra resources such as worksheets and textbooks are will only be used when absolutely essential to the students’ learning.
  • Booking of rooms, i.e. the library or an ICT room, will only be done when absolutely essential to the students’ learning, and be known to the students in advance. Cleaning procedures must take place in any room that the students have been in.
  • Cover lessons will take place in the timetabled classroom.
  • We will keep the use of extra stationery to a minimum, e.g. scissors, Pritt sticks etc. Students have had additional stationery included on equipment lists (including calculator and if possible the recommended Casio one) and should not share between them. When extra stationery is essential to the students’ learning, teachers will ensure that it is only shared between Yrs 7 & 9, Yrs 8 & 10 and Yr 11 alone, unless it has been left untouched for 72 hours.
  • We will maximise natural ventilation by opening the windows.
  • Exercise books can be taken home for marking and staff will ensure that handwashing occurs before and after handling books. Students are not to take exercise books home unless it is essential to their learning, e.g. revision before assessments/exams.
  • All students will receive formal half termly assessments and feedback in term 1 to make sure that staff know their current position and then can plan and report accordingly. This will be on academic progress and on student’s Attitude to Learning.
  • Students will be taught in 3 academic bands (rather than the previous 2 bands) and this setting will take place prior to September. However, Year 7 will only be ‘set’ after Term 1 and ready for January 2021. To provide greater protection and reassurance, Year 7 students will be taught in tutor groups for the first term (rather than academic sets) and again this will be reviewed, based on updated guidance.


Behaviour and standards

  • Our behaviour policy has not changed except to reflect the new pastoral structure.  There is an addendum to it which covers guidance and behaviours relating to Covid 19. This is available via the website.
  • Our uniform policy is remaining the same with the added expectation from September of black shoes, NOT black trainers(See attached letter)
  • On days where students have practical PE they should attend school in their school PE kit (details of this are in the uniform and equipment guidance). They will remain in this kit all day. This is being done as our changing rooms will remain closed to groups to reduce transmission risk. Students must still bring their school bag and classroom equipment on these days. We recommend bringing spare footwear and a waterproof on wet days.
  • Isolation will be moved to the room previously known as Meeting Room 1 – upstairs.  It will be known as ‘Inclusion’.
  • This is a larger space so can be divided into two.  Yrs 7&9 down one side, Yrs 8&10 on the other.  There will also be a space designated for Yr 11 students, if required.
  • The expectations will remain the same in inclusion as stated in our isolation guidance.
  • Inclusion will continue to be used as a pre-planned sanction for more serious incidents (to avoid fixed-term exclusion) and SLT/Pastoral staff can place students in isolation during the day if, for example, responding to an on call that cannot be resolved. No students can be sent there by other staff.
  • Whole school on call – There will be an enhanced rota of SLT/Pastoral staff to respond to on call incidents and be on walkabout around the school.  The aim will always be to return the student to the lesson even if the SLT/Pastoral staff remain in the room near the student.  Removal from the lesson will happen rarely and only occur in extreme circumstances.
  • Detentions – There will be whole school detentions only, no individual or subject detentions. These will only be added by SLT or Faculty Leaders. They will take place in the Main Hall (where more space is available) and be on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday nights 3-3:45pm. On Friday there will be a longer detention for students that fail to attend a detention that week.


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