[22/05/2020] Weekly Update from the Academy

Dear Parents / Carers and students,

I continue to send you my best wishes and hope you are all well, whilst thoroughly enjoying seeing the Facebook and Twitter posts of your achievements at home – please keep sharing!

Several weeks ago, the DfE announced that Year 10 and Year 12 students will have ‘face to face meetings with their teachers’ as long as the government’s 5 health indicators are met. They promised that further guidance would be shared to explain what is expected of secondary schools when they reopen. That guidance should have been received last week. Unfortunately, as we head into half term break next week, it still has not been published.

Consequently, the current provision via online resources and supervision of vulnerable students / children of key workers will continue throughout and after half term. As soon as there is clarification from government we will respond to that advice and communicate with parents / carers and students as soon as is practicable both via the academy website / social media updates and an email directly to the parents of Year 10 and 12 on this occasion.

As we go into the half term I would like to say thank you for all the time you are spending in supporting your child to complete home learning and ask you to take a break and allow your son / daughter to have a break from home learning and try to have as much of a normal half term break without the pressures of school work or deadlines looming – I think we all need some time out and I know my son will definitely appreciate me not checking up on him every day and nagging about reading ‘A Christmas Carol’ to me daily!

Below I have shared several further resources to support Mental Health and On-line safety, please feel free to access as appropriate.

Success at School

Success at have provided information in relation to looking after your mental health during lockdown. It is Mental Health Awareness Week and, whether or not we’ve experienced mental health problems before, this is a really difficult time for almost all of us. Many of us are feeling the strain of being kept apart from friends, family and loved-ones, while the backdrop of coronavirus can be scary and unsettling.

8 mental health tools to try
There are some great tools out there that can help you maintain good mental health. Different things work for different people, so we’ve included everything from Headspace for mindfulness to Chill Panda to reduce your anxiety levels. Check out the full list: here.

Dealing with stress
This article is was written for people coping with stress at work and school. But it contains some great tips to stop stress building as you manage your study routine at home, from diet and exercise to keeping in touch with friends and taking breaks. Click to view article: here.

Your questions answered
In this article, originally written for students starting uni, we answer basic questions such as “what do depress and anxiety feel like?” as well as providing some advice on what to do if you are experiencing mental illness. Click here to read the article here.

Mental Health Support

A reminder about keeping children safe online information can be found with any of the links below:

  • Childline – mental health support and guidance;
  • UK Safer Internet Centre – to report and remove harmful online content
  • CEOP – for advice on making a report about online abuse
  • ThinkUKnow – provides advice from the National Crime Agency (NCA) on staying safe online
  • Parent Info – a collaboration between Parentzone and the NCA providing support and guidance for parents from leading experts and organisations
  • Childnet – offers a toolkit to support parents and carers of children of any age to start discussions about their online life, to set boundaries around online behaviour and technology use, and to find out where to get more help and support
  • Internet Matters – provides age-specific online safety checklists, guides on how to set parental controls on a range of devices, and a host of practical tips to help children get the most out of their digital world
  • London Grid for Learning – has support for parents and carers to keep their children safe online, including tips to keep primary aged children safe online
  • Net-aware – support for parents and carers from the NSPCC and O2, including a guide to social networks, apps and games
  • Let’s Talk About It – advice for parents and carers to keep children safe from online radicalisation
  • UK Safer Internet Centre – has tips, advice, guides and other resources to help keep children safe online, including parental controls offered by home internet providers and safety tools on social networks and other online services

Government has also provided:

Take care, stay safe

Kate Kell
Head of School