We aim to have all pupils back in September, in order to provide face to face teaching, whilst also keeping our students and staff as safe as possible. However, we understand that returning to school may stir up feelings of anxiety for parents, guardians, students and staff. The Coronavirus outbreak and lockdown has affected us all, and for some it is time for another big change in coming back to the Academy.
In order to begin mitigating some of this anxiety, it is the aim of this page to provide some information, which outlines the ‘Plan for the September Re-opening’. This is a confirmed plan, following the consultation that went out to families in July for feedback. In summary, our September opening plan is based on the following objectives:
Plan for the September re-opening
- Zones to create ‘bubbles’ for each year group
- Some limited interaction between Y10 and Y11 at lesson changeover, in order to support specialist teaching
- A one way system in order to support student movement around the building and encourage social distancing
- Dedicated pastoral support for each year group zone
- Dedicated toilets for each year group zone
- Staggered start/dismissal times and different entry/exit points into the building
- Separate fire drill practice for each year group ‘bubble’
- Students wash their hands (20 seconds with soap), before leaving home and returning
- Recommendation for students to walk or cycle (wearing appropriate safety equipment)
- Should students travel on public transport, the need to wear face coverings and keep a 2 metre distance (1 metre plus minimum when not possible) from those outside their household, or year group bubble
- Teachers maintaining a distance of 2 metres from students
- Teaching rooms modified, so student desks face frontwards
- Teaching rooms modified, with a dividing line between teacher and students
- Where possible, teachers moving classrooms, instead of students
- A revised behaviour policy, which supports this method of teaching
- KS3 students to predominately stay in form groups for their teaching, except for Dance, Drama & PE, which may take place outside (weather dependent)
- KS4 students to move classes for their teaching groups but stay within the year group zone
- Except for KS4 specialist teaching, where students travel to their specialist teaching space e.g. Art, Computing, Music & PE
- On days students have PE or Dance, they arrive in their sports kit
- Students to receive both a break and a lunch, one of which will be classroom based
- When the break or lunch is classroom based, cold food to be provided on a trolley service
- When the break or lunch is non-classroom based, hot food to be provided
- Dedicated risk assessments, outlining the systems of control for the prevention and response to any infection
- An upgraded cleaning service, which tours the Academy site
- The active promotion of hand hygiene, including hand sanitisers in classrooms and toilets
Personal Protective Equipment
- Students permitted to wear their own face coverings when in the Academy
- Staff permitted to wear face coverings when in the Academy
- Students presenting with possible COVID symptoms during the Academy day to be isolated (if possible) behind a closed door, with adult supervision and a window open
- If it is not possible to isolate them, the student to be kept at least 2 metres away from others
- Following collection, the family to book a COVID test for the student
- Inform the Academy if the result is positive and the student to isolate for 10 days (and other members of the family for 14 days).
Year group zones
KS4 specialist teaching areas
In addition to the proposals outlined above, subjects have developed ‘Recovery Curriculum’ plans for each year group. These plan acknowledge the loss students will have experienced during the lockdown, whether from the loss of routines, structure, friendship, opportunities and freedom. It then plans how to help students transition back to the Academy and back to face to face learning. In summary the recovery curriculum will:
- Identify the knowledge gaps students may have developed, through formative assessment methods
- Triage these knowledge gaps by teaching them in order of importance, beginning with core concepts
- Focusing teaching on core concepts, which are the key items of knowledge that support the learning of a subject
- Re-establishing the skills for learning, such as completing extended written tasks based on success criteria
- Re-establish classroom relationships, such as how to participate in classroom discussion, support the learning of peers and maintain good learning routines
- Include opportunities for social interaction, which may have been inhibited during the lockdown period.
Additionally, planning has taken place should a local lockdown come into effect and learning have to transition to a remote platform. The Academy has therefore been developing its teaching model so that it can be modified for the process of modular ‘Remote Teaching’. This includes:
- Synchronous learning, where teachers and students will learn at the same time but in different places, for instance via live video lessons.
- Asynchronous learning, where students work independently and inform their teacher when the work is completed, for instance via online worksheets or assignments.
Should remote learning become necessary, the Academy will offer both synchronous and asynchronous learning. Lesson cycles would begin with synchronous learning where the teacher presents the new knowledge and checks student understanding, followed by the tasks which students would compete asynchronously. In order to achieve this, the Academy has adopted Microsoft Teams as its remote learning solution. This offers student access to Office 365, which provide students with Microsoft Word, PowerPoint and Excel. It also enables staff to create collaborative classrooms, for students to have direct communication with teachers, and for work to be stored, marked and graded.
In summary of this document, detail has been provided for how the Academy will open in September. This includes a zone based system in order to keep year group bubbles separate, modifications to teaching and ensuring specialist provision can be offered at KS4, as well as revised catering and cleaning arrangements. It has also set out how it intends to welcome student back into the classroom and the process of the learning, with the recovery curriculum. Finally, it has outlined the process for online learning, should a local lockdown be initiated and the Academy have to close to students.