Rough Notes – October 2020

Welcome to the latest edition of Rough Notes. Thank you for taking the time to read our monthly publication, I am sure you will enjoy the content.

We have had a very positive first half-term following the return to school in September and, despite the ongoing national concerns about student wellbeing and anxiety, our students continue to make a strong return, demonstrating their resilience and desire to consistently be in school.

Nationally, school attendance at secondary level has remained at 88% whilst we have consistently remained above 94% for the whole of the half-term to date. Our highest daily attendance figure reached a staggering 99.03%. I would like to thank our parents and carers for their support in helping us to ensure that our students made such a fantastic start to the new academic year.

It has been great to see our school alive again, with students learning in classrooms amongst their peers and teachers and gradually beginning to participate in more of the additional activities that make Woodroffe such a special place. The lunchtime inter-tutor group competition within year group bubbles has been a particular favourite with large numbers participating daily.

There have been many smiles on the students faces since the return. For those who have found the transition a little more challenging, our new 'Safeguarding and Wellbeing' team have worked hard to support these students, ensuring that they are able to return to learning confidently in school as quickly as possible.

This first half-term would normally have included many school events but, due to the COVID-19 restrictions in place, many of these have required amendment or postponement until such time as we are able to safely run these events. One such event was our annual Open Day. This is usually a day keenly awaited by the local community and we are desperately sorry that we were unable to run this event as we would have liked. That said, we provided prospective parents and carers with the opportunity to get a flavour of our fantastic school through a ‘Virtual Open Day’. The resources, including videos, can be viewed by following the link below:

Virtual Open Day

On Friday 16th October we participated in the ‘Wear Red Day’ campaign in an attempt to ‘show racism the red card’. It was great to see a sea of red across the school with many individuals joining the cause. During October we also engaged in activities in support of ‘Black History Month’ including my digital whole school assembly on privilege and the work of John Amaechi, based around developing young people’s understanding of how white privilege and indeed, any privilege, can have an impact on an individuals’ life.

We want to ensure that our school remains open for as many students as possible, educating our young people for as long as possible, whilst we do what we can to ensure that all remain safe. Information has been regularly and consistently shared with students and home about the measures taken by the school to ensure a smooth and safe reopening. Please help us to remain open for as long as is possible by reinforcing these messages at home and ensuring that your children are well prepared and follow the plans in place. I have included below, the core messages shared:

I would ask that parents and carers ensure that students leave home in the morning equipped with:

  • A face covering
  • Their individual bottle of hand sanitiser (school provided or home replacement)
  • Appropriate clothing for inclement weather

I would like to thank our staff for what they have done to ensure that we could welcome all students back as soon as possible and for the way that they have supported students during the first half-term. This has been a real team effort and despite the challenges faced, the team has done an incredible job. Thank you.

I hope you enjoy our latest edition of ‘Rough Notes’. Should you wish to find out more about our school, news or events, please visit the school website which I am sure you will find useful. In addition, for regular updates, why not look at our Twitter Feeds:

The Woodroffe School Headteacher: @HeadteacherTws
The Woodroffe School: @WoodroffeSchool

Best wishes,

Dan Watts