Latest News

Friday 10th July 2020

The following letter was today sent out to all parents and carers via Parentmail:

Dear parents and carers,

I am finally able to give you some actual details about how school should look in September! The intention is that every student is back in school as soon as possible and as safely as possible.

The main principles that we have followed are:

  • We want to have all lessons taught by specialist teachers
  • We need students studying for exams being taught in specialist classrooms
  • We will minimise the amount of movement around the school and maintain ‘bubbles’.

To ensure that we are able to bring students back safely and instruct them in the new procedures that they will need to follow, we will have a staggered return in September:

  • Monday 7th September: Years 7 and 12 in school
  • Tuesday 8th September: Years 7, 8, 9 and 13 in school
  • Wednesday 9th September: Years 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 in school
  • Thursday 10th September onwards: Everyone in school.

Students in Years 7, 8 and 9 will be in separate areas and teachers will come to them. Older students will also have zones of the school where they spend most of their time, but will be able to move to specialist classrooms, like Science labs and Technology rooms, as normal.

We hope that maintaining bubbles will allow us to keep as much of the curriculum as possible going and will mean that we can, in time, begin to offer an extra-curricular programme. However, for the first two weeks of the new term there will not be clubs after school, while we all get used to the new routines.

To help maintain these bubbles and to avoid large groups of students mixing, we are also going to stagger students’ arrival and departure from school. This means that your child’s school day will be 20 minutes shorter than normal. Sadly we have had to reduce the amount of social time in school to enable this to happen.

Year Group Start Time Finish Time
7 8.05 2.05
8 8.25 2.25
9 8.05 2.05
10 8.05 2.05
11 8.25 2.25
Sixth Form Varies depending on timetable Varies depending on timetable

We would like to encourage your child to walk or cycle to school where possible. If you drive your child to school, please can we ask that you arrive no more than five minutes before their start time to avoid congestion. There will be further details about buses next week. Students with siblings in year groups that have a different start and finish time will be able to wait in school as required.

School will be very different in September and I am aware of the strain that this is putting on your children and on you. We are planning for the fact that students will come back to us in very different places academically and mentally. I can promise that we will not bombard them with tests the moment that they set foot in the building and that we will all be undertaking training to help us identify and support students with mental health issues.

I appreciate that this email raises lots of questions. Next week you will receive more detail on how school will operate and we will put all of this together into a handbook so that you have one point of reference in September. Please can I add the caveat that guidance changes quickly at the moment, so we will have to adapt to local and national changes as they arise.

Thank you, as always, for your patience and support.

Yours faithfully,

Mr Austen Hindman

Head Teacher

Monday 6th July 2020

The following letter was today sent out to all parents and carers via Parentmail:

Dear parents and carers,

I’m sure that many of you will be aware that the Government has now published guidance on reopening schools in September. We are working to turn this guidance into a workable plan for Bishop Luffa School and hope to be able to share that plan with you very soon. There are two principles that are clear:

All students should return to school on a full time basis from September;Schools should adjust the way they operate to reduce the risk of infection.

Please note that it is unlikely that school will return immediately to the way it was before lockdown. It would help all of us if you begin to talk to your child about this. Students will not be able to mix freely across years and social time will be very different. If students come back to school with that expectation, then hopefully the reality will be a pleasant surprise.

This school year will end as advertised on Friday 17th July. We will not set lessons on that day; instead we will be having our final whole school assembly online at 10am. Our Key Worker provision will finish on Thursday 16th July.

The school building has now been open non-stop since February Half Term. This has meant an incredible amount of work from our site staff and cleaners. To make sure that they, and all our staff, get a break, we will be closing the school physically and virtually for the first week of the summer holiday: 20th – 24th July. If you need anyone at school urgently during that time, then please use head@bishopluffa.org.uk.

I would like to thank you all for your support over the last few months: your messages and prayers have kept us all going.

Yours faithfully,

Austen Hindman, Head Teacher

 

Monday 6th July 2020

For the attention of Year 7 Parents and Carers

Dear parents and carers

Please note that tomorrow's planned Year 7 into Year 8 Parents and Carers Induction Evening has been postponed until Tuesday 14th July. This will be a virtual event and information on how to access the meeting will be sent to you before Tuesday. It will start at 6.30pm and conclude by 7.00pm.

 

Friday 5th June 2020

IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR YEAR 10 AND YEAR 12 STUDENTS

Extending face to face provision to Year 10 and 12

Dear Parents and Carers

The Government has asked schools to consider how they can involve students in Years 10 and 12 in ‘face-to-face’ contact with their teachers. This will begin on 15th June.

Schools have been left to decide how they want to implement the guidance, but one thing is clear: for all of our students, the main experience of school will be online for the rest of the term.

We have been working on a programme that gives students opportunities in school that they couldn’t have at home, while following the stringent health and safety guidelines that the Government has set out. If we are asking students and staff to take the risk of coming into school, then we want it to be a meaningful experience, important to their courses, which cannot be delivered on-line.

Within the DFE guidelines we are able to have 25% of students in Year 10 and 25% of students in Year 12 in school at any one time. This means that we can have a maximum of 60 Year 10s and 30 Year 12s in the building each day. We will have the children of Key Workers in school at the same time, so we expect to have approximately 140 students on site.

Students will be taught in separate ‘bubbles’ and will follow strict hygiene rules. Their start and finish times will be staggered and they will not be in for an entire school day or expected to wear school uniform. A detailed timetable for your child will follow next week, with further guidance on the expectations at school. Here is an overview of the programme:

Year 10

Wb 15th June: Triple Science, Performing Arts, Product Design and PE

Wb 22nd June: Triple Science, Performing Arts, Product Design and PE

Wb 29th June: English

Wb 6th July: Maths

Wb 13th July: Combined Science

Although a small number of Year 10 students will not be involved in the early phase of reopening due to their subject choices, all students will have had the opportunity to take part in lessons in school by the end of term.

Year 12

Year 12 exams will continue online as per the communication from Mr Saunders. Exams will end on Friday 26th June. From 29th June students will be invited to attend practical subjects to supplement their online learning and from 6th July for progress review meetings with individual subject teachers and personal tutors.

We look forward to giving you more information next week.

Yours faithfully

Steve Williams, Deputy Headteacher

 

Tuesday 19th May 2020

Dear parents and carers,

I would like to thank you all for the work that you are doing to keep your children engaged with school. The amount of work being completed and the amount of contact that we have had from students has surpassed our expectations.

I have been ready to write to you for over a week to explain the Government’s plans for schools to return, but as you will have seen from the news, the guidance so far has been about primary schools. We are expecting a document to come out this week that sets out the expectation for secondary schools. What is clear is that the majority of our students will be learning online for some time. To help us prepare for this, we will be asking you and your children to fill-in surveys about the lessons so far. This has been new to all of us and we need to adapt to the needs of our students.

We continue to open the school for the children of Key Workers and for students with Education Health Care Plans. The students in school do the same work as the students at home, guided by a small number of staff. If you are returning to work after 1st June and need help looking after your child, please contact us at keyworker@bishopluffa.org.uk. We will prioritise Keyworker families and children with EHCPs, but we will try our best to help where we can.

If your child is struggling to work at home but doesn't have an Education Health Care Plan, we may still be able to help. Please contact your child's Head of House and we will work out how we can support you, either by bringing your child in to school or through contact with staff online.

If you have a child in Year 10 or Year 12 you may have seen that there is a promise of 'face-to-face time with a teacher on a limited basis' for your child before the summer holiday. We are waiting to see what that means, and have the same questions that you would have about safety and transport to school. However, if it is possible to give some students a meaningful experience safely in school this academic year, then we will be very excited to welcome them back. I will contact Year 10 and 12 parents when we have a firm proposal, with safety plans included, for students to come in to school.

Thank you, as always, for your support and prayers through this difficult time.

Yours faithfully,

Austen Hindman, Head Teacher