Academy weekly news

For the week ending: 22 May, 2020

Dear Parent / Carer

I hope you and your families continue to stay safe and be well.

I am pleased to confirm that the school will remain open over half term for those students deemed vulnerable and also children of key workers – this is exactly the same as it was over Easter where there will be more activities for students.

You will have heard on the news that the Government are pushing for schools to re-open after half term for certain year groups. However, it’s important to emphasise the form this will take, as each academy will be different.   For us, our staff will return on Monday 1st June for training and familiarisation with the new processes, health and safety procedures, behaviour expectations etc.

Year 10 student provision

  • The programme will be phased as outlined below starting with students on free school meals.
  • Students will be invited in and divided into 2 groups (am and pm) based around tutor groups.
  • The morning group will run from 9am to 11am. The afternoon group will run from 1pm to 3pm.  There will be no break time and students must leave site immediately after their session has ended.  Each group will be divided into sub-groups of 10 and students will always use the same classroom, equipment and desk.  Areas of use will be cleaned between 11am and 1pm, and again after 3pm.

Subjects will run as follows

  • Monday will be maths based.
  • Tuesday will be English based.
  • Wednesday will be science based.
  • Thursday will be options based (humanities).
  • Friday will be options based (art, technology, MFL).

This is a phased return with our free school meals (disadvantaged) Year 10 students being invited in first on the 8th June.

It’s likely we will then invite Year 10 SENK and HPA students back on 22nd June with the remaining Year 10 cohort being invited back from around 6th July.

The reason for this schedule is that our data shows that disadvantaged students are having the most difficulty in accessing our work and this is also a high priority, not only for Ormiston Denes but also Ormiston Academies Trust, and the nation as a whole.  Much of the talk has been about the gap widening between these groups and therefore we are looking to do all we can to support them during this period of time.

However, if numbers allow we may well move the dates of these additional invites forward by 1 week.  I would hope you understand that it is important the situation is managed very careful with health and safety being of the upmost importance and therefore all of our planning is with this at the forefront.

I do understand all the anxieties that parents will have around schools being reopened and to reiterate that whilst we are keen for children to attend, we do understand the difficulties and individual circumstances that families are facing. The government has confirmed that you will not be penalised if you choose not to send your child back to school at this difficult time, but we do look forward to further supporting our year 10 students.

To aid our planning we will be asking in advance if you intend to send your child back into school, and will provide details on how to do this in next week’s email.

I must stress, our Year 10 provision will run alongside our continued vulnerable student and key worker student provision (albeit in separate areas of the school).

In the meantime, all students should continue with their learning at home.

On a sad note, we wish to share some news that one of our cleaners and midday support staff, Mr Gary Peek, passed away peacefully at home earlier this week.  Many students will know Mr Peek and will be sad to hear this news.  He will be missed very much around the academy and we pass our thoughts and condolences to his family and loved ones.

I hope you have a nice half term break and stay safe.

Yours faithfully

Mr Jim Nixon, Principal

Welcome to Ormiston Denes Academy, north Lowestoft’s secondary school and the first choice academy for the majority of families in the local area. We offer a rigorous, traditional curriculum; supplemented by a broad choice from creative and performing arts, technology, and sport; all personalised to the strengths of individual students. Read more…

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