Posted on October 16th 2020
Weekly Academy Update For Parents - 16th October 2020
Today, is the final day of a half term like no other before it! I would like to thank the whole Harris Garrard community of parents, carers, staff and students for your support of the Academy, through what has been one of the most testing half terms of this generation.
Despite the challenges we have faced we have had an excellent half term, students are back learning and making up for lost time and to see them smiling and able to socialise with their peers, has done so much for their mental and physical wellbeing. We have truly rowed together and have proven that together we can achieve anything.
As I write this letter, the national and local picture is constantly changing, as we learn that London is entering Tier 2 of the Government’s restrictions. It is currently unclear how this will impact schools and so over the half term period, I will be writing to you again to share any changes to what we do at the Academy. All this information will also go onto our website.
For secondary phase students, we are making a change to end of break and lunch times. When we blow the whistle to signal the end of the session, we will now expect students to line up in their tutor groups, as they do when they start the day.
Year 11 Half Term Intervention and Mock Examinations
In the first week of half term, we will be running year 11 intervention sessions to help our students prepare for their mock examinations next half term, which will be delivered by our subject specialist teachers. These sessions are more important than ever, due to missed time in school over the lockdown period. In England, GCSE and Vocational exams will still go ahead in the Summer, and therefore every learning opportunity is important.
Students will start their mock examinations the week commencing Monday 9th November. The mock examination results are very important and could potentially become the most important exams of the year, if the Department for Education decide to switch to teacher predictions for final grades.
How half-term intervention will run
Half term intervention will be split into two daily sessions; AM and PM. The AM session will run from 9am to 12pm, and the PM session 12pm to 3pm.
There will be a 30 minutes lunch in between, please ensure your child/ward prepares a packed lunch to bring with them.
Letters have been sent home to confirm which session your child/ward has been invited to. There may be sessions where your child/ward does not have a session.
Student Leadership Election
On Friday 9th October, the students at Harris Garrard Academy exercised one of their most fundamental rights as citizens in a democratic society and voted in the Academy’s student leadership elections. In the week prior to the election, students in each tutor group from Year 7 to Year 10 addressed their classmates, and it was excellent to see so many students speaking so passionately and eloquently about important issues within our Academy and our local community. They also shared why they believed they were the right individuals to facilitate the changes they wanted to make.
The young men and women in our Sixth Form likewise campaigned with passion and rigour throughout the Academy to form the eight Hub Captains, that would lead the Student Leadership Team over the next year. Our students throughout the Academy cast their votes to decide who their Hub Captains would be. We would like to thank and congratulate all our students for taking part.
The Listening Ear
We understand that these are very difficult and uncertain times and often support can be hard to find, so we offer a support service at the Academy during holiday closures, and we call this the Listening Ear. Students and families from all phases of the Academy can visit the Academy for a socially distanced meeting between 9:00am and 1:00pm every day to speak with a member of the Safeguarding Team.
A final note
I would like to personally thank families, colleagues and the wider community for making me feel so welcome at the Academy in my first half term leading such a fantastic school. I look forward to our continued partnership in delivering the education and support that this community deserves.
Head of Academy