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25 March 2020 – All through

Dear Parents and Carers

After writing formally to you so often over the past few days, I am returning to the blog.

I just wanted to write a note of reassurance to you. I know a number of parents are concerned and frustrated (in equal measure) as they try to get online, access resources, sort out glitches and all the rest, so that they can get their children settled and working. Please do not worry too much about this – we’re in it for the long haul, I think. We will get there. And I promise we will be doing our best to sort out any issues you have.

The learning resources are provided as a help to you, to keep your children focused so their days can be busy and purposeful. We hope this will help their health and wellbeing, as well as their learning. The resources are not intended to be a race, or a ‘have-to’, and certainly not intended to add to what is already a stressful situation for us all. For me, I think the most important thing is to have a weekday routine for the family, with learning at the heart of it. Please use the resources and engage with them – but you are the first and most important teacher of your children – feel free to do creative activities with your children and share these with your child’s teacher! If you think we’re providing too much, then just let the teacher know. We need to make the best of this situation, and our teachers are keen to help and support you and your child.

For senior pupils, of course, things are a wee bit different for a wee while! Most have provided sufficient evidence in most of their courses which demonstrates their level of performance. They can move on to learning at the next level. Nothing further is required.

For those were coursework is to be completed or additional assessment is to be gathered, we hope to give you further details tomorrow. Please remember if there are unfinished pieces saved on the school system, teachers can still access these. While we can’t recreate exactly the exam conditions of prelims at home, we will attempt timed assessments and other online ways to gather evidence which can help teachers give a fair estimate of performance. Again, if it is not possible to gather more evidence, that is ok. We will use what we have. This should be seen as an additional opportunity. No one will be penalised in any way if they are unable to participate in these. Nevertheless, please encourage your child to engage with this so they can demonstrate their best as a learner.

I do hope this is reassuring to you. Please keep safe and follow the public health guidance.

God bless and every good wish,

Seán P Hagney

Headteacher and Campus Leader