Academy Update 20/11/20

Posted on: November 20, 2020

Dear parents/carers,

It has been a challenging few weeks since the academy reopened after half term. Like virtually every other school in the country, we have been doing everything we can to ensure that the academy is safe for everyone in the community whilst ensuring that students continue to receive the outstanding education they deserve and we aspire to. The balance between these two priorities is a difficult one, but the safety of the students, staff and their families will ultimately guide the decisions we make as an academy.

Today we have welcomed back Year 10 and thank them for going into isolation for two weeks to prevent further spread of the virus. The dedication to their online lessons has been commendable and will ensure that they have not fallen behind in their education whilst isolating. This week we have also had to collapse the Year 7 bubble because of 2 positive tests reported to us on Wednesday. A further positive test result in Year 7 yesterday suggests that this was the correct decision to ensure the safety of all students in the Year 7 bubble. All students have adapted well to the online learning that started yesterday, and all families without computer access have been provided with a laptop to help support the learning from home.

We have also had two positive test results reported to us yesterday in Year 11; however, both students had already been isolating for a significant period of time before they showed symptoms. The reason they were isolating was that others in their household had started to show symptoms, and they took the responsible decision to isolate themselves. This means that the rest of Year 11 are completely unaffected by this. I am very grateful for their actions and would ask that all members of our community please isolate as soon as they start showing symptoms and seek a test as quickly as possible. If you have problems accessing a test, please contact the academy, and we will try to help you with this.

Public Health England has now released some additional ‘minor’ symptoms to keep a lookout for. These include:

  • Headaches
  • Aches and pains
  • Feeling very tired for no good reason
  • Sore throat
  • Runny nose
  • Sneezing
  • Sometimes’ tummy ache’ in children

Clearly, these symptoms are common in everyday illnesses that we all suffer from. If you or your child notice these symptoms, you DO NOT need to isolate, but you may wish to get a test.

If you are suffering from any one of the three main symptoms, then you DO need to isolate and seek a test. Those symptoms include:

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

Despite these challenging conditions, the students at this academy continue to thrive. The quality of work, behaviour and attitudes shown by the students during this time is a credit to themselves, their families and the community. One of the key values of our curriculum is resilience, the ability to deal with and bounce back from tough times. Our students have shown they have this quality in abundance and we should all be very proud of them.

Have a lovely weekend and my very best wishes to you and your family.

Mr Brennan