Coronavirus School Updates
Updated: Tuesday 26 May @ 13:50
The government closed all schools indefinitely from Friday 20th March.
Our plans for widening provision
No doubt you will have seen that over the weekend the government asked that we delay our Year 10 wider opening plans and amend them under as a result of new guidance, to commence from 15th June.
We will revisit our plans in response to the new guidance issued, and be in touch next week regarding our plans.
The following documents relate to the steps being taken during the COVID-19 pandemic and the widening opening of schools to some students.
Critical workers and vulnerable children provision
At present, the children of the following key groups, will be allowed to attend Manor High School, if their parents/carers wish:
- Critical workers (as defined by the government)
- Children with an EHCP
- Most vulnerable children (those who have a social worker)
Although a number of families are eligible to send their child/ren to school, they are not opting to do so at this time.
It goes without saying that we will support families of critical workers if needed but by keeping your child/ren at home, it is not only decreasing their chances of getting infected but also that of our staff.
We understand that many of our country’s critical workers will have shift patterns and that they may change at short notice. We are here to support you but require some indication of use to enable us to put effective plans in place.
If your situation does change and you need to send your child/ren to school, please email us at email@example.com to advise us that you need to use the service, with at least 48 hours notice to ensuring necessary staffing is in place.
Work being set
An additional three weeks of lockdown have been announced. This is based upon medical advice and it is sensible. Therefore, we will continue to set the work through SMHW. Manor High is in frequent contact with other secondary schools and it is clear that there is a similar level of commitment across the sector, with all schools doing their best during this period of international crisis.
We have received some questions and feedback regarding the work being set. The feedback is positive. Understandably, in such a time of national uncertainty, there have been questions about:
- the amount of work
- the level of expectation upon pupils
The vast majority of pupils have logged in and engaged in the work that is set regularly by our staff. Where there are concerns about engagement levels, the school has made phone calls in order to support and to ensure this is in place. However, for almost all of our pupils, the work has been undertaken and completed.
With regard to the expectation level, we would rather set too much than too little, but we are realistic about our expectations. Each week, Mr Powell has written home with a plea for families to maintain as great a balance as possible between work and play and to help teenagers, during such a difficult time. They must feel supported and free of stress. We would all agree that this is very important. We do not expect every piece of work to be completed or to be perfect. We appreciate the efforts by parents and carers to help the students to maintain the education of their children.
We have put in additional resources on SMHW to provide a sense of fun and enjoyment through competitions and challenges. Please check our school’s Twitter and Facebook accounts for additional posts and videos. We also use these accounts to share anything else that is of interest and educational benefit.
Supporting the community
Again, we would like to thank everyone on the front line in roles such as food delivery, health care, security, policing and more. Our school applauds your efforts. We continue to produce face masks each week for frontline workers in the locality, in order to help to protect them.
The latest examinations information from the DFE is that there will be a results day on 20th August for GCSEs. We continue to monitor for further updates.
We have been in touch with our Year 11 Prom Committee. They have advised us they would still like a Year 11 Prom once social distancing measures are relaxed and we are happy to support them in arranging this. Class of 2020 leavers hoodies are now available to order online.
Free School Meals
We continue to provide free school meal (FSM) during the lockdown. The government has developed a national scheme to provide supermarket vouchers via the Edenred online portal. There have been technical issues with the site. The Department for Education has advised schools that the site is being expanded to meet the high demand.
Manor High have managed to complete the requirements at school level and all FSM families should now have received an email containing an e-code for £30, covering the Easter fortnight, which can be redeemed for a shopping voucher. Please check junk and spam folders if this has not been received. A further e-code should be delivered by the start of next week for the next 2 weeks. We are aware that parents are having difficulties redeeming their vouchers, unfortunately we can only suggest that you persevere and try at non peak times until the issues are resolved.
StarLine home learning helpline
Nationally, there is a sector-led initiative to provide support for parents and carers who have concerns or queries about educating their children at home. StarLine – a new home learning telephone helpline - is now live to support parents and carers nationwide.
StarLine will help parents and carers in the following ways:
- Providing access to a team of qualified teachers, education and parenting experts.
- Focusing on providing practical ideas, support and reassurance.
- Offering tips, techniques and resources to enable parents to give their children the support they need to continue learning while schools are closed.
- Supporting family wellbeing and mental health.
- Covering all phases of education and subjects plus behaviour, pupil wellbeing and SEND.
StarLine is available to parents and carers of pupils from all schools nationwide. Free, confidential advice is available six days a week by phoning the StarLine team on 0330 313 9162. For more information, visit www.starline.org.uk or follow @StarLineSupport on Twitter.
The team behind StarLine will also be broadcasting a weekly programme on YouTube. In each episode of StarLive, a guest presenter will share practical ideas for home learning. Further details can be found on the StarLine website.
The project is in its infancy but it will develop and expand. We hope that it provides a useful additional resource for parents. Meanwhile, the work set by Manor High staff is of a high standard and directly supports our curriculum.