Dear Parents and Carers,

I hope that you have all enjoyed a relaxing Christmas. Apologies for intruding into your New Year’s Eve, but as you are likely to be aware, the Government has again modified arrangements for the start of term across the country.

Essentially, this pushes back all dates by one week from those which we outlined on the final day of term. I have included the new arrangements below by both date order and also by Year group.

Please note that from the 5th January 2021, there will be remote learning set on Go4Schools for all students in Years 11, 12 and 13 who are not eligible to attend in person (in most cases these will be “live” lessons using the Zoom platform).

For students in other year groups – in line with Government guidance, we will commence full remote learning (in most cases live lessons) from the 11th January 2021.

During the week of the 5th January 2021 we will make available some learning activities and important content on Go4Schools for students in other year groups, to prepare for the term ahead. We value your support in ensuring that these activities are completed properly.

The reason we are unable to offer live lessons for all students during the first week is so that we can prepare thoroughly – and begin the process of  mass testing arrangements – this will be a significant and challenging operation in a school of our size and the guidance, logistics and arrangements are incredibly complex.

If all deliveries and support for the testing processes materialise as promised from the Government, we should have further information on how we will operate the in school testing arrangements by the 8th January 2021 and I will aim to include details in my weekly letter next Friday.

 

Monday 4th January 2021 – Staff Professional Development Day. No remote Learning & Wollaston School remains closed to all students.

Tuesday 5th January 2021 – All year groups will be provided with some remote learning activities to facilitate study at home. These will be mainly “live” lessons for students in Years 11 and 13, and independent study tasks for students in other year groups. Attendance at school will only be allowed for children of critical workers or those who require additional support (please see below for full details).  It is not compulsory for eligible students to attend school during this time, and I know that there is continued anxiety regarding the risk of transmission. Whilst we will warmly welcome all those who attend, we will of course support parent and carer decision making, and only insist on children’s attendance on an individual basis if there are specific circumstances which mean that they are clearly better served by being in school.

Monday 11th January 2021 – Year 11 and Year 13 can return to school, alongside the continuing provision for children of critical workers and those who require additional support.  Again full details by year group below, and during this week we will also facilitate attendance of students in Year 12 who are sitting external examinations. Full remote learning will begin for students in all other year groups.

Monday 18th January 2021 – Full attendance: All students return to “in person” education at Wollaston School.

Please note that all dates are provisional and depend upon Government / Department for Education approval.

 

Students in Years 11 and 13 (and those in Year 12 who are sitting external examinations)

  • Students should attend school as usual from Monday 11th January 2021. A full timetable will run in existing bubbles and all of the usual arrangements will apply, including provision of school transport and catering facilities.
  • Students in Years 11 and 13 should enter school from their usual gates and make their way to tutor rooms to begin the day.
  • All bubble systems and the requirement to wear face coverings remain in place.
  • We will send full details regarding attendance for Year 12 students who have exams during the week of the 11th January 2021.
  • Full remote learning will be provided from 5th January 2021.

Students in Years 7,8,9,10 and 12

  • Students in these year groups (apart from the exceptions below) should not attend Wollaston School in person during the first two weeks of term.
  • Some remote / independent learning work will be set on Go4Schools from 5th January 2021.
  • Full remote learning will begin from 11th January 2021 via Go4Schools/Zoom for all students, following their normal timetables.
  • Links will be posted in the Go4Schools system – as per the partial closures earlier this term.
  • Lessons will be delivered by usual teachers (unless in the event of staff absence) from their usual teaching rooms.

 

Children of Key Workers and students who need additional support in all Year groups (excluding Year 7).

  • We have retained the list of students eligible to continue in school provision from the first national lockdown. If your child attended LAW (Learning at Wollaston) School during the national closure, they remain eligible to attend in the first week of January and there is no need to contact us again in advance of the 5th January 2021.
  • If your child did not attend LAW school during the first national lockdown, and your circumstances have changed, please contact Jade Fitzhugh fitzhughj@wollaston-school.net and register your details.
  • Children of Key Workers and students who need additional support can attend school in person from the 5th January 2021.
  • Lessons will be in all usual rooms and bubbles and will follow existing timetables.
  • Teachers may be delivering live lessons using the zoom platform whilst simultaneously teaching key worker and students who need additional support in person, so please be aware of the added complexity here!
  • Eligible students should arrive at the usual times, through their designated entrances and go to their tutor rooms. The full timetable will proceed from there.
  • School transport and catering will be available as usual.

Children of Key Workers and students who need additional support in Year 7

  • Thank you to those parents who have already been in contact to indicate eligibility.
  • If you have not yet done so, are a key worker, or your child requires additional support please inform Jade Fitzhugh in advance of their attendance on the 5th January 2020. fitzhughj@wollaston-school.net If you child eligible for attendance in this category whilst at primary school, they are likely to be eligible in Year 7.
  • We will also contact some students and families whom we have identified on the 5th January 2020.
  • Children of Key Workers and students who need additional support can attend school in person from the 5th January 2021.
  • Lessons will be in all usual rooms and bubbles and will follow existing timetables.
  • Teachers will be delivering the live Zoom lessons whilst simultaneously teaching key worker and students who need additional support in person, so please be aware of the added complexity here!
  • Eligible students should arrive at the usual times, through their designated entrances and go to their tutor rooms. The full timetable will proceed from there.
  • School transport and catering will be available as usual.

Thank you as always for your continued support. I would also like to take the opportunity to wish a Happy New Year to you, your family and loved ones. I sincerely hope that 2021 is the year in which we can return to some form of normality  – with a sense of pride in how we have faced this situation together and the collective resolve to emerge stronger than ever as a whole school community.

Mr James Birkett

Headteacher