Letter to Parents - Spring 2020

Dear Parents, 

As this term comes to an end, it is apparent just how much this global pandemic is affecting our families, our businesses, our communities and our way of life.  The speed at which it has happened has been shocking and is still catching us out as new scenarios unfold around us. 

What has become apparent however is that the Abbey Gate College community is as strong as ever and fighting hard to maintain some normality even whilst operating remotely.  The staff across both sites are working hard to maintain contact with the pupils and help them through this difficult time, whilst sometimes struggling to balance their own children’s education and childcare, care of their elderly relatives and neighbours, alongside aiming to maintain their own physical health.  

We have learned how to use technology at an incredibly fast speed but thanks to you and your efforts, so far so good.  We are continually looking at different ways of delivering lessons to our pupils whilst still maintaining excellent safeguarding practices.  There are lots of rules about what we can and cannot do and we are still negotiating the minefield of what is acceptable good safeguarding practice across all of the different age groups that we are catering for. 

College is closing down completely over Easter for the duration of the holidays.  We will be opening the doors to Key Workers children from Monday 20 April.  This facility is only for those parents who fall into the Key Workers category and simply have no other child care options open to them. 

If you have any queries or concerns, please note that the following e-mail addresses will be maintained and answered throughout the Easter break.  

We are operating end of year examinations after Easter for our pupils in years 7 – 10 and your children’s timetables are posted on the VLE.  I know to do this from home is very unusual but we want to try and maintain as much of our normal curriculum and timetable as possible so that when we do get back into school we can pick up where we should be.  We do want the pupils to complete the examinations in as close to exam conditions as you can provide but do not want to create extra stress or anxiety for you or your children; we will be there to support you and your children at this time.  These results will provide data for us to know what your children need in terms of support, stretch and challenge for the future.  Your co-operation in helping to complete these examinations will be very welcome. Please find information about the end of Year 7 – 10 internal examinations from Mr Booth by following this link; 

Some new initiatives from pupils themselves have been set up - we now have a virtual library set up with links from Mrs Littler so those pupils who normally spend a lot of time in the Library have some access and continuity.  Two of our Sixth Formers, Jessica Mills and Ethan Hodson are writing a blog each week to help share their thoughts whilst working remotely in order to help other pupils – this can be found on the well-being page of the VLE. 

Support for pupils is ongoing with surveys, direct e-mails and telephone calls – we want to maintain links as closely as we can. 

Unfortunately, before we could finalise this term's Broadsheet the printers we use had to close their doors temporarily before they could produce a digital copy for us.  Instead if you follow the link below it will take you to the News page on our website which showcases all of the amazing things our pupils have been up to this term.  

I want to wish you all a very happy and safe time over Easter. Stay connected if you can with your loved ones and friends and my hope is that we open our doors to you all in the not too distant future. 

Yours sincerely, 
Mrs Tracy Pollard

Published: Wednesday, 1st April 2020