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School Closure Letter To Parents

20 March 2020
School Closure Letter To Parents

Dear Parent

Due to the containment and delay measures introduced by the Government to restrict the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), Devizes School will be closed from Monday 23rd March until further notice.

The decision to close the school was made by the Government on 18th March following advice from Public Health England. All schools in England will be closed during this time. Whilst the closure of the school will no doubt cause a significant disruption to you and your family, we are keen to ensure that the negative impact on your child's education is minimised during this period. To this end staff at Devizes School have been working hard to make lessons and resources available online, through the student VLE and Show My Homework (SMHW).

How will work be made available?

Students can access all learning by logging on to the VLE. The VLE is accessed through the school website as normal. Once onto the VLE, students can access folders of resources and other learning materials. To do this they need to use the 'Subjects' tab at the top of the page which will open up the subject specific pages. Each subject has a 'Students who are self-isolating / working from home' page in which generic resources and tasks can be found. We will also post general messages to students with helpful advice and updates. Staff will also be setting work through Show My Homework according to your son/daughter's normal timetable. Timetables are available on Go4schools and the VLE.

If you have any problems logging on please contact [email protected]

What happens if I don't have access to the internet or a laptop?

We have provided work books and suggested learning activities for your child. This work will need to be completed in the exercise book provided.

Expectations of students

Students will be expected to access the lesson resources and learning activities on the VLE and via SMHW during the school closure. Typically, this will involve them in 4-5 hours learning tasks each school day. We will set school work for students on a day-to-day basis. For some of the tasks students will be required to submit their work, this will be checked and students given feedback. We appreciate your support in maintaining these expectations.

We strongly recommend that that all students remain in a normal school day routine. Students should be ready to begin school work by 8.30am and work through until 3.00pm - with the normal breaks. Students are used to working without distraction and for 50 minutes at a time- please maintain these expectations, including their phone not being in the same room as them.

Contacting staff

Students are encouraged to email their subject teacher about the lesson content if they have any problems or questions contact details can be found on the school website, all staff emails are [email protected] (e.g. Mr Joe Bloggs would be:[email protected]) Staff will be available during the normal school hours (8:30-3:00pm) and able to respond to any learning related queries from students. Please be aware that there may be a delay in replying to emails where there is a high demand and for communications sent outside this time.

If you have any individual concerns or questions which are not subject specific, please email your child's tutor.

Updates and information

Updates regarding learning related matters, closure information and plans for re-opening will be communicated via the VLE, our website, parent email and Twitter account.

Our Twitter account is: @devizesschool

How will we maintain contact with Y11 and 13?

Now that the decision to cancel exams this summer has been taken by the Government, our support for Y11 and Y13 needs to change. We will be in contact about how this will work but will be based around 'bridging work' and support for their next steps. With regards to how their exams will be issued, we have every confidence that this will be fair and reflect the hard work they have put into their studies. Their collective response to this change has been mature and full of integrity. The only message from us at the moment is to make sure all Y11 and Y13 students keep all of their school work safe because it could be needed in future.

Other Questions

Normal school transport will not be running.

Who do I contact if I have safeguarding concern or need help?

There are contact details and safeguarding advice on the website and VLE. Mrs Robinson is the first point of contact regarding safeguarding.

[email protected]

For other support and advice:

On keeping yourself healthy and active at home, as well as mental/physical health issues we are providing helpful guidance and links on the school VLE.

General queries:

For general enquiries please email [email protected] or the main school phone line 01380 724886. This email address is not for IT related questions.

Children of Key Workers and Vulnerable Children

Please see attached letter which details how school will be supporting Key Workers. If you believe you are a key worker see https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision for the list.

Then follow this link https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdkDVny1e3dVZDGUL7CExtD0IrbndjPwi10LGZQtipa9xC4zQ/viewform

and complete the form.

If you do need to send your child to school on Monday as part of this initiative then please note that we will follow normal school hours and would expect students to be in uniform. School will only be open to those who are eligible. For vulnerable children, school will directly contact families about how we support you.

Thank you for your support and patience during this unsettling period and the undoubted disruption it will cause. However, we are keen to ensure that all students continue to engage with their learning and encourage you to discuss the work set with your child regularly so that any problems are identified early and addressed. This is also an opportunity for young people to engage in other productive activities especially those that promote good quality health and kindness to others in the community. Ultimately we want you and your family to be safe, and for us to provide regular contact and connectivity. This is a big undertaking but one we are fully committed to support. There may be some glitches at the start but stick with us, provide feedback and we will all get through this together. Please do get in touch if you have any questions or require support.

Kind regards and stay safe.

Phil Bevan

Principal

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