1st April 2021
Dear parents and carers
It is hard to believe this is the last letter of the Spring term and we will be moving into our final term of the year after the holiday. It has certainly been a busy and unusual term for students, staff, parents and carers with home-schooling, as well as lateral flow testing alongside the ongoing school improvements.
School Improvement Update
We had a visit from our Trust School Improvement Partner last week and I am delighted to inform you that he noticed a distinct change in the school since his last visit in November 2020 and his first visit 18 months ago. He commented on the change in our whole school culture, noticing more confident students as he walked around and notable changes in the quality of leadership and management at both senior and middle leadership level. He accompanied me on a learning walk around classrooms and commented on the participation of students and their readiness to learn. I am so proud of the whole school community and of course we would not be able to make progress as quickly without your support, so thank you as always, for the trust you put in us every day.
As we continue to instill our high standards, as I mentioned in a previous letter, we will be focusing on uniform after the holiday. To support our high expectations, can I remind all parents and carers that we expect students to be back in full Heworth Grange uniform as we return after the holidays. Please can you ensure that students do not come to school in leggings or joggers and that they comply with the rest of the uniform policy. Please refer to the uniform requirements here https://heworthgrange.org/the-school-uniform/. In addition, as we move into warmer weather, students will also no longer be wearing coats and hoodies in lessons unless we have particular inclement weather and in this case students will be notified on the day. Please can you also support us with the rules regarding no jewellery (except a wristwatch), we have particularly noticed a rise in nose studs, whilst students have been wearing face coverings. We would also appreciate your support with reminding our young people that mobile phones should not be used during the school day. We appreciate students need to carry phones but these should be out of sight and not in use until after school.
Some students have had difficulty arriving to school on time. We will be focussing on punctuality after the holiday because it is a vital employability skill. The gates close promptly at 8.45am and students should ensure they are on school site prior to the gates closing and be ready for morning line up, we appreciate your support with this matter.
Lateral Flow Test Kits
If you run out of test kits during he holiday you can access them via this link https://www.gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests
The new Heworth Headlines edition has just been released and I hope you enjoy reading about our news and that it helps you to feel in touch with what is happening in school https://heworthgrange.org/monthly-newsletter/. The student voice has also been very busy taking part in recruitment over the past week and I am delighted to announce that Mrs Longhurst will be joining the attendance team in the near future, I know you will join me in wishing her well with her new role.
The Equality Ambassadors have also been working hard at reviewing inclusivity and diversity across school and there will be news about that project after the holiday. In addition, the peer mentors have been exploring with the school community the kinds of issues that cause students anxiety or worry, which will enable Ms Blanchard and Mr Gardner to develop a training package for the peer mentors so that they can support students in the most effective way. We will release more news on this soon.
New School Logo News
Student voice alongside parents and staff voice have also been part of the stakeholder engagement sessions with the Trust on their new brand and marketing strategy. The Trust has worked with schools to develop new logos that will reflect the ethos of each school whilst ensuring they also reflect the Consilium Trust logo linking together the family of schools. This is an exciting piece of work and more information on this will be available after the holiday but please note there will be no changes to uniform for September 2021. We recognise that this is not the right time to update uniform after the difficult year everyone has experienced, rest assured current uniform with the existing logo will still be used in September 2021. This is also because suppliers need to be alerted to changes to logo very early on due to the supply chain requirements. Please see the attached flyer for ordering of any uniform requirements.
As we come to the end of the Spring term we are saying farewell to some valued staff. Ms Parnell, Mrs Williams, Mr Williams, Miss Garner and Mrs Scott. I know you will join me in wishing them well in their new ventures.
In closing, I wish you all a very peaceful holiday and I look forward to welcoming students back refreshed on the 19th April 2021.