St John Plessington Catholic College

22-Mar-21 Message from the Headteacher

Dear Families

I hope you are all well. I am writing to give you an update as we enter the third week of our return to full face to face teaching.

It has been very pleasing to see how all year groups have settled back in so the school routines and study habits. For Y11 and Y13 this is a particularly important period as we prepare for teacher assessed grades for this year’s GCSEs and A-Levels.

Can I draw your attention to a number of points:

Face masks

In line with government guidance, I asked that all students try to bring 3 masks to school each day in an effort to collectively protect each other. Some have queried the rationale behind this; in my assemblies with all year groups, I have explained that this is due to the following factors:

- masks can break easily so you need a spare

- you are wearing the mask at all times inside the building and may wish to swap/change and freshen up

- you should use a fresh mask on public transport.

Please be assured that if a student breaks or loses their mask, they will be provided with one. Many thanks for your support with this.

Home testing

We have now carried out more than 5000 lateral flow tests in school, students have been a credit to themselves and their families. Those students who have had three tests in school, have been issued with their home testing kits. Testing twice a week should be a routine and ideally become embedded in the family routines. Please note that testing should continue over the Easter holidays and your child will be provided with tests to use over the Easter break. It is particularly important to test before staff and students come back to school after the Easter break, ideally the night before. Please see below a reminder of when you should carry out your child’s home testing:

Y11 - Every Friday & Tuesday

Y10, 12 & 13 - Every Monday & Thursday

Year 7 & 8 - Every Monday & Thursday

Year 9 - Tuesday & Friday

Uniform and Standards

Thank you for ensuring that uniform and appearance standards are maintained during these challenging times.

So many of our students have grown so much taller during the period of lockdown!

Understandably, there may be times when uniform and shoes no longer fit. Where this is the case, please contact school and we will do all we can to support families. Our simple and effective school uniform ensures that barriers to learning and engagement are removed and sets a level of equality which I am determined to maintain.

Please note that make-up is not allowed in Y7 to Y11, this includes false tan and false eyelashes and we thank you for your support in ensuring that these basic expectations are met. We all agree that we come to school to learn and to focus on fulfilling our potential without having unnecessary distractions. While I understand that lockdown routines differ significantly to school routines, we will be asking parents to ensure that all uniform and appearance standards are fully in place by 12th April. Can I remind you that all students should be on site by 08:35 each day. Punctuality to school and to lessons is extremely important and repeated lateness results in missed learning.

Easter Holidays

We break up this Friday 26th March at the normal time for all students.

Thank you for your continued support. Please look out for our end of term newsletter this week where you will be able to read about our students’ achievements over the past term.

Yours faithfully

Ms Maria Sharratt