Shenfield High School

Letter to parents dd 3rd April 2020

Friday, 03 April 2020

Dear parents/carers 

As we reach the end of this strange term, I wanted to update with some further information. 

Learning at home

Firstly, you will have already received our PREP newsletter for after Easter as well as some FAQs for parents.  I hope you have found this useful.  We don’t underestimate the difficulties of working from home yourselves, supporting children and looking after vulnerable family members – we are all in the same position at the moment.  Staff are working hard to provide engaging resources and ongoing support to ensure that learning continues.  We also know that we cannot replicate what goes on at school – that would be impossible.  Instead, we are giving advice about the amount of work students should be attempting while also being very mindful of wellbeing issues – please see the FAQs.  New resources – some of which are interactive – are being produced all the time by staff, and they are also available to answer queries and give feedback by email during working hours.  We will continue to keep in touch about what is being developed.  Please remember that when we return to normal we will pick up the students from wherever they are; they will all have had very different experiences during the period of closure.

Qualifications for Y11 and Y13

I was hoping to have more definitive information to share with you but the DfE has yet to give detailed advice to schools.  The following is what we know so far:

1The awarding bodies will be asking schools to submit their judgement about the grade that they believe the student would have received if exams had gone ahead.

2To produce the above, schools will take into account a range of evidence and data including performance in mock exams and non-exam assessments.

3The exam boards will then combine this information with other relevant data, including prior attainment, and use this information to produce a calculated grade for each student, which will be a best assessment of the work they have put in. The exam boards will ensure the distribution of grades follows a similar pattern to that in other years so that this year’s students are not disadvantaged.

4Exam Boards will aim to give calculated grades to students before the end of July (this date is yet to be confirmed)

5 If students do not agree with the grade they have been awarded by the exam board, they will be able to appeal the decision.

6 If students have appealed the exam board’s decision because they do not feel their calculated grade reflects their performance, they will have the opportunity to sit an exam at the earliest reasonable opportunity once schools are open again. Students may have the option to resit their exams in either Autumn 2020 or Summer 2021.  This is yet to be confirmed.

Please could I ask that students, parents and carers do not contact the school or individual teachers asking them what their grades will be. It will be the exam boards who make the final decision and we may not be able to share the information we are asked to send them.

As soon as we have more definite information, we will share it with you.

Wellbeing

Wellbeing support information was included in the Newsletter published yesterday and also in a communication from Deputy Headteacher, Mrs Comerford, emailed earlier. Should you have any concerns that we can assist you with, or if there is anything you feel we should know, please get in touch.  In addition, if you are a key worker and you require provision to be made in school because your child cannot safely be at home, please contact me on c.herman@shenfield.essex.sch.uk.

On behalf of all staff, I hope you keep safe and well.  Our best wishes to you and your families.

Yours sincerely

Carole Herman
Headteacher

Partnerships