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National Lockdown – Important information for parents/carers

National Lockdown – Important information for parents/carers

Friday 8 January 2020

Dear Parent/Carer

Sadly we have had to return to on-line learning for the majority of our students, I would like to thank you for your patience and understanding while we have worked through our planning for remote learning for most of our students and in school provision for key workers and vulnerable students.


Keeping in touch

Throughout the closure, form tutors will make contact once per week via Google Classroom with each student. Academy staff will continue to monitor the SIMS Parent messages and the main school email address (info@swinton.coop) and we will do our best to reply to all messages and enquiries throughout the working day. Your child can also send messages to their teachers through Google Classroom.

In addition to these channels of communication, we are also making a mobile number available between 8:30am-3:30pm every weekday for students or parents to use if they have any safeguarding concerns or emergencies. Please help us to keep this number available by only using it if you have an urgent safeguarding concern. The number for this contact is Miss Withers: 07889 646834.


Free School Meal provision

The Co-op have again generously offered vouchers to support the first two weeks of lockdown for those of you whose children are registered for Free School Meals. Please note that this offer was made yesterday and our staff are working incredibly hard to get these distributed as soon as possible. We have only received enough at the moment to provide one week and will forward the other vouchers when they are received on site. This offer will then be replaced by the national scheme once it reopens.

Children who are attending school and eligible for Free School Meals will continue to be offered lunch in school. Those children attending school who are not eligible for Free School Meals will need to either bring a packed lunch or ensure they have money on their Scopay account.


Access to devices for remote learning

Did you know that Google Classroom can be accessed via the web browser on PS4 and XBox consoles? A mouse and keyboard can also be plugged into these consoles to make working on Google Classroom easier. If your child does not have access to a console or device to access remote learning, we do have a limited number of laptops available or can provide a keyboard and mouse for use with a games console. Please contact us if you need help. We will shortly be issuing another Google survey to find out which families may need further support in relation to remote learning.


Increasing data allowances on mobile devices to support disadvantaged children

Schools, trusts and local authorities can request mobile data increases for children and young people who:

  • do not have fixed broadband at home
  • cannot afford additional data for their devices
  • are experiencing disruption to their face-to-face education

Children with access to a mobile phone on one of the following networks might be able to benefit: Three, Smarty, Virgin Mobile, EE, Tesco Mobile and Sky Mobile.
Other providers may join the scheme at a later stage.

If applicable, we can request a data increase on your behalf, please get in touch if you feel this applies to your child and we will discuss it with you.


Year 11 & GCSE Exams

These will not take place as planned, although it is not yet clear what will replace them. If it is to be Centre Assessed Grades like last year, it is important even at this early stage, that it is emphasised that these are not ‘teacher predictions or estimates’ as misreported in the media. It is also not the case that Year 11 will simply be awarded their mock or target grades.

In other words, all of Year 11 must continue to keep working as grades will be based on the evidence of their work. There is plenty of time for them to improve their learning (and their grades) further and we will continue to expect the very best from all of them. We will soon arrange a virtual assembly with all of Year 11 to discuss the GCSE exams and reinforce this message.


Expectations for home learning

During this time when your child is learning from home they are expected to follow their normal timetable.

Students should aim to complete work for all lessons and should try to stick to the times of a normal school day from 9.10am until 3pm taking rest breaks and breaks for lunch at appropriate times.

Their work will be set in Google Classroom. This will be posted in the Google Classroom class for that subject.

All information will be posted on Google Classroom.


Logging in to Google Classroom

Please see the download below with further information on logging into Google Classroom.

Expectations for Home Learning

Thank you again for your continued support.

Yours faithfully
Mark Harrison, Headteacher