Re-opening of Sir Thomas Boughey Academy in March 2021

Posted: February 24th, 2021

As you are aware, for many weeks we have been educating students remotely and predominantly via Microsoft Teams. Despite strenuous efforts from both teaching and pastoral staff to ensure that all students are engaged and involved, we do recognise that the best way to educate young people is face-to-face in school.

We recognise the significant contribution that our academies make to the development and well-being of our students, and we are looking forward to welcoming students back. We take seriously our social role in contributing to our wider community and will work with families and students to build the safest, most welcoming, and positive provision that we can.

We want to support our students to return, hopeful that many of the relationships that were thriving before will be invested in and restored, building a cushion against the discomfort of returning.

We recognise the need to listen to what has happened to our students in this time of lockdown and COVID-19 restrictions, to understand the needs of our community and engage them in the transitioning of learning back into school.

We understand that our students will feel like they have lost time in learning and we will work with them to show them how we can address these gaps, mapping progress and next steps in learning to reassure them of positive outcomes, and to reassure them that they will be supported to reach the outcomes expected by themselves, their parents and their teachers. We will make the skills for learning in a school environment explicit to our students to reskill and rebuild their confidence as learners.

We are also building space into our curriculum to focus on students rediscovering themselves, making plans for the future, and to find their voice on what their learning needs are. We will all work at an incredible pace to make sure this group of learners are not disadvantaged against their peers, providing opportunity and exploration alongside the intensity of our expectations.

To ensure our academies are as safe as they can be, we have fully reviewed our Health and Safety plans and risk assessments, and we reinforce the government message that we all need to do our best to maintain social distancing and expected controls during these early weeks of return.

Again, as per the government message, we will be carrying out Mass Lateral Flow Testing over the next few weeks and we will be staggering the start of return to allow us to be sure that all who consent to testing have received negative testing outcomes before returning, making a safer return to the classroom. We ask parents to bear with us whilst we undertake this challenging and sizeable programme of tests.

Please be assured that as we receive information and direction from the Department of Education, we respond to it thoroughly and promptly and will keep staff, students and parents up to date with developments as they roll out.

We are optimistic about the future of our staff and students and remain committed to the growth and development of all in our community.

As always, we thank you for your support during these uncertain times.