VIRTUAL WEST BRIDGFORD SCHOOL UPDATE
VIRTUAL WEST BRIDGFORD SCHOOL UPDATE
GCSE AND A LEVEL EXAMINATIONS
‘That was the strangest day of my career’, a sentiment shared by teachers across the UK on Friday. As the staff walked down the drive with our Year 11 and Year 13’s, we were very aware that their overwhelming feeling was one of uncertainty. However, we have had more guidance from central government. CLICK HERE to see the initial plans from the Department for Education and a list of FAQ’s. Please do sit with your child and read through the guidance together. This is all we know thus far, however as more details are released, we will keep you up to date.
The government has asked schools to remain open for those parents who absolutely need it. So, from Monday the school is ready to supervise the children of key-workers. All parents holding ‘key-worker’ designation who need to send their child to us, have now been individually contacted and preparations made. The vast majority of these parents are NHS staff and we will ensure their children have a safe space to be while they treat those in need. We will make sure these children will observe strict social distancing, hand-washing and other measures to protect our staff, other students and most, most importantly their parents from cross-infection. School pastoral staff have gone into greater detail with individual families about what the supervision service will be in school.
If we are to maintain social distancing and not swamp our hospitals, we need to minimise large gatherings in the coming weeks. If your child CAN stay at home, we ask you to keep them there, in the home. This is for the benefit of those in the community who are most at risk from Coronavirus complications.
Starting next week, the largest unplanned change in UK educational history will begin, the teaching of all UK school-age children at home, using online resources. I have asked my online learning experts how long they would ideally like to prepare for such an undertaking; ‘12 months?’ Instead we will attempt to implement this ‘on-the-fly’. School staff have spent 2 weeks preparing online lessons for Year 11 and Year 13, and as GCSE and A-Level exams are now cancelled, these lessons will have to be moth-balled. As such the plan for the next two weeks is:
Monday 23rd March
· Staff training, testing of systems and lesson preparation.
Tuesday 24th March
· Student Introductory Sessions run by Dr Stutt and Mr Deans. Please prompt students to open Brightspace on Tuesday morning, where they will find ‘Virtual Lesson’ links in their calendar. Dr Stutt and Mr Deans will talk to pupils about what to anticipate in their lessons in the coming weeks. Pupils should access the session on the device they will have the easiest access to on a daily basis.
· 9.00 am - 10A and 10B
· 9:30 am - 10C and 10D
· 10.00 am - 10E and 10F
· 10:30 am - 10G and 10H
· 11:30 am - 10J.
· 1.00 pm - 12A and 12B,
· 1:30 pm - 12C and 12D
· 2:00 pm - 12E and 12F
· 2:30 pm - 12G and 12H
Wednesday 25th March onwards.
· Year 10 and 12 Virtual Lessons begin in Brightspace. Students should login by 8.40am to check the days’ schedule in their calendar.
Week beginning Monday 30th March
· Year 10 and 12 lessons continue.
· Online work begins for years 7, 8 and 9. This will be of a similar nature to school homework. Please ask your child to start checking for this work from Sunday 29th March.
· We are also looking to gather a range of additional interesting activities and projects. This will be placed on Brightspace.
We will review the success of ‘Virtual West Bridgford’ using a survey sent out to parent email addresses on Wednesday 1st April. Please use this as your chance to feedback on how VWB is working, and suggest changes. Please do not swamp firstname.lastname@example.org with feedback before then.
We will make mistakes, the technology will let both us and you down at some point, some students will find we are setting too little work, some too much. Some students may log-in to find all their staff are not there – they may well all be ill, which we will try to cover with our remaining staff. Despite our best attempts to keep them quiet, you may well hear the sound of young children coming from your child’s speakers as their teacher is speaking, as many of our staff have young children of their own at home. I could go on. However, we will do our very best to maintain as high a level of service as we can. Bear with us.
A FINAL MESSAGE
The weather over the weekend was glorious and in my garden the daffodils are blooming. Everything felt normal with the only indication of the crisis that faces us, being reduced traffic noise from the road near my house. However, I also saw large numbers of pupils from both our and other schools, out enjoying the weather, laughing, joking and having the great time they truly deserve to have. Unfortunately, at the moment we as adults have to explain to them that they need to stay at home, explain why that need is so pressing and in doing so protect our friends, neighbours and family.
Heartfelt best wishes,
The West Bridgford School