Parents newsletters 20/21 #1

Monday 31 August 2020

(Click here for a downloadable PDF version)

Dear Parents/Carers

Welcome to the first newsletter of the new academic year. I hope that you and your families are keeping healthy and have managed to enjoy this strange summer despite the coronavirus restrictions and changeable weather. A big welcome to the parents of our new Year 7 students, particularly if it’s your eldest child joining us in September. Welcome to the Caedmon community! And to those parents of students in Years 11, 12 or 13 leaving us this summer, a huge thank you once again from all the staff at Caedmon College and Whitby Sixth Form for all of the support you’ve given us in recent years.

Schools re-opening in September

I’m sure that the return to school in September is at the forefront of your minds. We’ve been planning this since early July and responding to additional guidance from the government as it’s been issued over the summer, including that published late on Friday evening.

Staggered return to school

As you’ll appreciate there are several changes to how we are organising the school day and the timetable to accommodate a full return to school in September. These changes will need to be carefully explained to students on the first day that they return to school. In addition, we have nearly 150 new students starting in Year 7 who haven’t benefited from the usual extensive transition programme that we run each summer. Therefore, we will be staggering the return to school for different year groups, the details of which are set out below. I’ve also indicated the location that students from each year group should head to on the first morning that they return to school.

On the Normanby site:

  • Year 7 Return to school on Tuesday 8 September – 8.55am in the Main Hall
  • Year 8 Return to school on Tuesday 8 September – 8.55am in the Canteen
  • Year 9 Return to school on Wednesday 9 September – 8.55am in the Learning Resource Centre
  • Year 10 Return to school on Wednesday 9 September – 8.55am in the Main Hall
  • Year 11 Return to school on Tuesday 8 September – 8.55am in the Learning Resource Centre

On the Whitby Sixth Form site:

  • Year 12 Enrolment interviews continue for those not already registered on Monday 7 and Tuesday 8 September.
  • Induction Day: Wednesday 9 September – 9.00am in the Main Hall on WSF site
  • Timetable begins on Thursday 10 September
  • Year 13/14 return to College on Tuesday 8 September – 9.00am in the Main Hall on WSF site

Organising the timetable

We will be organising students in Years 7 to 11 on the Normanby site into ‘year group bubbles’.   For lessons such as English, mathematics, geography, history, RE, French and German that require a standard classroom, students in each bubble will be accommodated in separate zones across the campus:

  • Year 7 - upstairs in the C Block
  • Year 8 - 2 classrooms upstairs in the H (main) Block and 2 rooms between Food and Technology rooms
  • Year 9 - downstairs in the C Block
  • Year 10 - downstairs in the H (main) Block and I-College
  • Year 11 - in the N Block classrooms

In a change to our normal way of operating, teachers will move from zone to zone rather than students moving between different teachers’ classrooms during the course of the day. Depending on grouping arrangements, students may move between classrooms within their zone, but in line with government guidance, we’re aiming to minimise the mixing of students from different year group bubbles.  

Students will only move out of their zones for subjects that require specialist facilities such as science, PE, technology and the creative arts. Where possible, students will move around the school using outdoor routes. 

On the Whitby Sixth Form site, because we are dealing with smaller year groups and we have students from different chronological years accessing the same classes as each other, we will be treating all the students as being in a single ‘bubble’. This remains in line with guidance published by the government. With smaller group sizes and amendments to our private and communal study areas, social distancing on site will be much easier to maintain.

Tutor periods and assemblies

Students in Years 7-11 will still have a daily 25 minute tutor period at the start of the day. On the Normanby site each form will have a base within their year group bubble’s zone of classrooms. Each year group will have its own assembly once a week in the Main Hall or Learning Resource Centre.

Access to toilets

Each of the zones we have identified have student toilets or there are some located nearby. The government guidance recognises that in most schools it will be very difficult to avoid mixing of students from different bubbles when using toilet facilities. However, we’re aiming to minimise this by, for example, staggering breaks and lunchtimes – see below.

Break and lunchtimes

We will be running two slightly different patterns to the school day – ‘Early’ and ‘Late’ – as set out below. Two year groups will follow the ‘Early’ pattern on any given day, with the three remaining year groups following the ‘Late’ pattern.  We are aiming to keep disruption to the timetable to a minimum. The lengths and timings of tutor time and Periods 1, 4 and 5 are unchanged, as are the start and end times of the school day.  Students following the ‘Early’ pattern will have their Period 3 split to enable them to go to lunch. However, to compensate for any disruption to learning this might cause, we’ve extended Period 3 by 5 minutes for the whole school.

The timings of the college day at Whitby Sixth Form are unchanged from last year.

Early (Normanby)

 

Late (Normanby)

 

WSF

08.55 – 09.20

Tutor time

 

08.55 – 09.20

Tutor time

   

09.20 – 10.20

Period 1

 

09.20 – 10.20

Period 1

 

09.10 – 10.10

Period 1

10.20 – 10.40

Break 

 

10.20 – 11.20

Period 2

 

10.30 – 11.30

Period 2

10.40 – 11.40

Period 2

 

11.20 – 11.40

Break

 

11.40 – 12.00

Period 3a

 

11.40 – 12.50

Period 3

 

11.50 – 12.50 

Period 3

12.00 – 12.40

Lunch

 

12.50 – 13.30

Lunch

 

12.50 – 13.20

Lunch

12.40 – 13.30

Period 3b

   

13.30 – 14.30

Period 4

 

13.30 – 14.30

Period 4

 

13.20 – 14.20

Period 4

14.30 – 15.30

Period 5

 

14.30 – 15.30

Period 5

 

14.40 – 15.40

Period 5

In deciding which year groups will follow which pattern, we tried to build in as much consistency as possible, whilst at the same time, where possible, avoiding splitting Period 3 for practical subjects.

Break times

 

Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

Year 10

Year 11

Mon

Late

Hall

Late

LRC

Late

Canteen

Early

Hall

Early

Canteen

Tues

Early

Hall

Late

LRC

Early

Canteen

Late

Hall

Late

Canteen

Wed

Early

Hall

Late

LRC

Early

Canteen

Late

Hall

Late

Canteen

Thurs

Late

Hall

Early

Canteen

Late

LRC

Early

Hall

Late

Canteen

Fri

Early

Hall

Late

LRC

Early

Canteen

Late

Hall

Late

Canteen

Lunch times

 

Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

Year 10

Year 11

Mon

Late

Hall

Late

Canteen

Late

LRC

Early

Hall

Early

Canteen

Tues

Early

Hall

Late

Canteen

Early

Canteen

Late

Hall

Late

LRC

Wed

Early

Hall

Late

Canteen

Early

Canteen

Late

Hall

Late

LRC

Thurs

Late

Hall

Early

Canteen

Late

Canteen

Early

Hall

Late

LRC

Fri

Early

Hall

Late

Canteen

Early

Canteen

Late

Hall

Late

LRC

Staggered starts and ends to the school day

With so many students arriving by school bus or train, it would not be practical to organise staggered starts and finishes to the school day.  Once they arrive on site each morning we will be asking them to make their way to ‘bubble’s zone’. To begin with we will not be operating a breakfast service in the canteen. If and when we can find a way of safely doing this, we will advise you.  

The start and end of students’ days on the Whitby Sixth Form site are already staggered because of the nature of their timetables. 

Face coverings

The issue about whether or not students and staff were going to be required to wear face coverings when schools return in September has been a topic of much debate over the summer. The latest government guidance for schools in England on Friday 28 August states:

“The government is not recommending universal use of face coverings in all schools. Schools that teach children in Years 7 and above and which are not under specific local restriction measures will have the discretion to require face coverings for pupils, staff and visitors in areas outside the classroom where social distancing cannot easily be maintained, such as corridors and communal areas and it has been deemed appropriate in those circumstances. 
In particular, schools that teach Years 7 and above may decide to recommend the wearing of face coverings for pupils, staff or visitors in communal areas outside the classroom where the layout of the schools makes it difficult to maintain social distancing when staff and pupils are moving around the premises, for example, corridors.
Based on current evidence and the measures that schools are already putting in place, such as the system of controls and consistent bubbles, face coverings will not be necessary in the classroom even where social distancing is not possible. Face coverings would have a negative impact on teaching and their use in the classroom should be avoided.”

Given the system of measures we are putting in place when students return, including organising our timetable along consistent ‘year group bubble’ lines; staggered breaks and lunchtimes; minimal contact between students in different year groups; and classroom organisation so that, where possible, all desks are facing the front, we are not recommending anyone wears face coverings on site. In line any changes in advice we receive from the government in coming weeks and months, we will of course review this and other measures we are putting in place.

School transport

We’re still awaiting information from the local authority about their plans for school transport in September.  We understand that this information will be published very shortly. They, like school leaders, will need to familiarise themselves with any changes in the latest government guidance that itself was only published late on Friday evening, preceding the bank holiday weekend. As soon as we have more information about how school transport will operate we will let you know.  

School uniform, equipment and lockers

In line with the latest government guidance, we are expecting all students to return in full school uniform at the start of term. This guidance states that ‘uniforms do not need to be cleaned any more often than usual, nor do they need to be cleaned using methods which are different from normal’. We appreciate your help in ensuring that your son/daughter’s uniform complies with our expectations, in particular:

  • black trousers or knee length skirt (for girls - in order to ensure the correct length, you may need to look in the ladies section rather than by age eg size 8 rather than size 15-16); white shirt/blouse; CCW blazer, tie
  • trousers should be tailored with a zip fastening and not jersey, legging or jeans style. Please be mindful of this when buying from the school sections of various outlets, as not all the trousers available fit our criteria. Again options in the ladies sections of Next, Sainsburys or other outlets may be more suitable, as they have a wide range of styles available compared to school sections.
  • black leather footwear, preferably shoes, with no visible labels and a black sole. Suede or canvas shoes are not permitted.
  • no facial piercings of any description
  • only one set of small stud earrings 
  • natural hair colour.

Please note that our local uniform provider has changed. You should now contact the Laughing Whale Print and Embroidery company for any particular CCW uniform requirements. They are located on Mayfield Road and can be contacted on 01947 600823 or via their website: https://www.laughingwhaleschools.co.uk/

The latest government guidance states that “pupils limit the amount of equipment they bring into school each day, to essentials such as lunch boxes, hats, coats, books, stationary and mobile phones. Bags are allowed. Pupils and teachers can take books and other shared resources home, although unnecessary sharing should be avoided. Bags are allowed.” We always encourage students to bring a good supply of their own equipment to school with them each day – pens, pencils, ruler, scientific calculator – and this will be even more important this year.  

All of those students who want a locker will be able to have one. Can I please ask that any students leaving Year 11 or 13 return their keys as soon as possible to allow their locker to be allocated to a younger student.  This is one of our annual routines that was disrupted this year because of the school closure. With students being in particular zones this term, we’ll need to reallocate some lockers to students in different locations.  To enable this to happen, please ask your son/daughter to bring their locker key into school with them on their day of return. This reallocation will take a few days to complete and in the meantime students will be able to leave their bags in their form room.

GCSE and A-level results

As you’ll be aware from news reports, publication of this year’s A-level, GCSE and BTEC results proved to be very controversial. Acting on the guidance given to us and using all of the evidence about individual students’ performance over the last two years, teaching staff at Caedmon College and Whitby Sixth Form spent a lot of time in late spring using their professional judgement to decide which grades they believed students would have achieved this summer under normal examination conditions. These judgements were moderated within subject teams and on a whole school basis. We were pleased, therefore, that the government eventually decided to accept teacher assessments as the basis for awarding grades this summer.  

This proved to be a very difficult period for some of our A-level students applying for universities that were suddenly having to restart their place allocation processes. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our university applicants and their families for the patience and tenacity they have shown in recent weeks. Throughout all of this period of uncertainty, students have been ably supported by our brilliant Sixth Form Team.

Highlights from the Year 11 results at Caedmon College Whitby:

  • 79% of our GCSE results were at the ‘standard’ pass of grade 4 or better – equivalent to the former A*-C grades
  • 56% of our GCSE results were at the ‘strong’ pass of grade 5 or better
  • 20% of our GCSE results were at the high pass of grade 7 or better – equivalent to the former A*-A grades
  • 92% of our BTEC and other vocational qualification results where Level 2 passes – equivalent to GCSE grade 4 or better
  • 26% of our BTEC and other vocational qualification results where Level 2 distinction or distinction* – equivalent to GCSE grade 7 or better
  • 67% of our students achieved 5 or more ‘standard’ passes (GCSE grade 4+), including in English and mathematics
  • 43% of our students achieved 5 or more ‘strong’ passes (GCSE grade 5+), including in English and mathematics
  • Although there will be no official performance tables and underlying data published this year, early indications are that students have made better than expected progress in all areas of the curriculum.

Highlights from our Year 13 results at Whitby Sixth Form:

  • we enjoyed a 100% pass rate in our A and AS Levels; Level 3 BTEC and OCR Technical qualifications
  • nearly 30% of our A-level grades were A* or A; over 50% were A*, A or B; and over 80% were A*-C
  • all 50 UCAS applicants have secured a place at university, the vast majority at their first or second choice institution, for the courses they wanted to student
  • once again this year we are sending students to a number of universities across the country, including Cambridge, Imperial, Durham, York, Leeds, Newcastle, Liverpool, Surrey, York St John, Swansea, Teesside, CU Scarborough, Hull, Northumbria, Manchester Met, Lincoln and John Moores Liverpool amongst others
  • these students will shortly be commencing studies in subjects as diverse as Law, Biology, Medicine, Veterinary Science, Midwifery, Civil Engineering, Primary Education, Psychology, Mechanical Engineering, Film & TV production, History, Mathematics, Fine Art, Performing Arts, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Policing, Sports, Business and Management, Adult Nursing, Physics, Child Nursing, Sports Science and PPE (Philosophy, Politics and Economics).

Staffing changes

At the end of the summer term, we said ‘goodbye’ to staff who have left Caedmon College this year.

Mrs Jackson started working on the Normanby site in 1998. For most of that time she has been part of our teaching assistant team, working with some of our most vulnerable students. Her commitment to ensuring that the students she works with fulfil their potential has been very inspiring. We wish her a happy and healthy retirement.

Mrs Tiplady has worked as the cook on the Scoresby site since 2005. In that time countless students have benefitted from the quality of her catering, not least her cheese scones which are legendary! With huge thanks for being such a supportive colleague over so many years, we wish her well as she starts her new job elsewhere in Whitby.

Mrs Queenan has taught at the College since April 2014, teaching biology and other sciences to students of all abilities from Years 7 to 13 with great success. She’s also been a Year 11 tutor during this past year, having been with them since they started secondary school. For family reasons she is moving to the Lancashire/Cumbria border and starts her new post at Queen Elizabeth’s School in Kirkby Lonsdale in September. We wish her and her husband well with their relocation.

Ms Walker joined our science department in September 2017 and has worked tirelessly over the last 3 years to secure the best results for all of the students she has taught, as well as supporting her Year 11 form through their GCSE journey. She is returning to Freeborough Academy in September to become their new Head of Science. We wish her every success with this promoted post.

Mrs Fellows who many of you will know from her days as a PE teacher at Caedmon School is leaving us after organising our evening and weekend lettings on the Astroturf, as well as running a café for families and spectators. She was one of the people most closely involved in securing the funding to have the all-weather pitch laid on the Scoresby site. We wish her well with her new ventures.

Mrs Harrison is about to start her maternity leave. In her absence we have temporarily appointed three colleagues to take responsibility for Years 7, 8 and 9:

  • Year 7 Ms Fleetwood
  • Year 8 Ms Charters
  • Year 9 Ms Ruberry

Mrs Gordon continues as our Director of Learning: KS4, looking after Years 10 and 11.  She and Ms Fleetwood, Ms Charters and Ms Ruberry will be supported by our Pastoral Officers – Mrs Wood and Mr Taylor.

Ms Boyd is our Head of Sixth Form, with Mrs Verrill continuing as our Director of Learning: KS5.

We have two new colleagues joining our teaching staff when we return. Mrs Cassell-Osowski and Ms Manslip are both science teachers and will both be Year 7 tutors next year. I’m sure you’ll join me in welcoming them to the Caedmon community.

Library books and ICT equipment

During the lockdown period we were pleased to loan over 130 Chromebooks and other devices out to students to help them complete the online learning we were posting. Thank you for all of those families who have now returned the device(s) they loaned. To help us clean and update the remainder in time for the start of term, we would be grateful if any outstanding devices are returned to school as soon as possible during the last week of the summer holiday. Please contact our ICT technicians using helpdesk@ccwhitby.org to arrange a suitable drop-off time.

In normal times we would have also collected in library books from students who have loaned them. Again, to help us prepare for the start of term, we would be grateful if any outstanding library books or textbooks could be returned to either the Normanby or Whitby Sixth Form reception areas as soon as possible. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.  

Important dates for your diary

Term dates 2020/21

Autumn Half Term 1

Tuesday 8 September 2020

Friday 23 October 2020

Autumn Half Term 2

Tuesday 2 November 2020

Friday 18 December 2020

Spring Half Term 1

Tuesday 5 January 2021

Friday 12 February 2021

Spring Half Term 2

Monday 22 February 2021

Friday 26 March 2021

Summer Half Term 1

Monday 12 April 2021

Friday 28 May 2021

Summer Half Term 2

Monday 7 June 2021

Friday 23 July 2021

 

Training Days 2020/21

Monday 7 September 2020

Monday 2 November 2020

Monday 4 January 2021

Two additional staff training days are being completed through twilight training during the course of the year.

Parents Evenings

Below are the dates we are planning to hold our parent consultation and Options evenings for the different year groups. In light of the public health situation, we will advise you nearer the time as to whether we can still go ahead with these events and if so how they will be organised.

Parents’ Evenings

Year 7

Thursday 18 March 2021

Year 8

Thursday 4 March 2021

Year 9

Thursday 3 December 2020

Year 10

Thursday 10 December 2020

Year 11

Thursday 22 October 2020 and Thursday 28 January 2021

Post 16

Thursday 4 February 2021 and Thursday 29 April 2021

 

Open Evenings

Year 8 into Year 9 ‘Choices’

Thursday 11 February 2021

Year 9 into Year 10 GCSE Options

Thursday 11 February 2021


And finally…

Thank you for all of your support during the period of school closure that started on Monday 20th. It’s been a really difficult period for the entire country. In such a big community as ours, there will be families for whom this last few months have been very difficult because of the illness or passing of someone dear to them. We’ve all struggled with the period of strict lockdown and adapting to the control measures that we now have to adhere to as different aspects of daily life have ‘re-opened’. We have a difficult term ahead but are confident that the wonderful students who we have the pleasure of teaching at Caedmon College and Whitby Sixth Form will adapt quickly to the new systems we are putting in place.

I will write to you again before the start of term to clarify any further advice we receive, particularly regarding school transport arrangements.  

Yours faithfully

Simon Riley
Principal

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