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FAQs for Change to School Day

6 May 2020

 

Dear Parents/Carers,

PROPOSAL TO CHANGE THE SCHOOL DAY

Thank you to those of you who offered feedback to the change of school day information I shared with you on 24 April 2020.

We welcomed the positive comments about the improvements to lunch and the increased teacher Continuing Professional Development (CPD) which will improve the learning experience for all students.

There were some common questions which arose and the answers to these, feature below.

Answers to FAQs about lesson times, lunch and extra-curricular activities.

On Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday lesson times will remain unchanged. Students will have five one-hour lessons as they currently do. A daily timetable for these days is shown below. The only change is that ten minutes have been taken off lunch. The reason for this is that we have been planning to improve the service we offer at lunch. We will have additional serveries and will be able to reduce the time taken for students to get a hot or cold lunch.

As only ten minutes have been removed from the lunch break, clubs will still be able to run. We hope that students will have more time at these clubs as the lunch queues will be shorter and students will be able to eat and get to their clubs quicker.

Currently on Monday afternoons staff have meetings, which means there are no after school extra-curricular clubs on a Monday. This will simply change to Wednesday; clubs will no longer run on Wednesday after school, but will run on Monday after school instead. The slightly earlier finish on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday will enable clubs to start that little bit earlier which is helpful in the winter months when it is cold and dark.

On Wednesdays there is additional time for PSHEE and Citizenship, and students will be required to complete one hour of online Mathematics whilst teachers undertake Professional Development.

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday

Lesson Timings Minutes
Registration 08.45-08.50 5
Tutorial 08.50-09.05 15
Lesson 1 09.05-10.05 60
Lesson 2 10.05-11.05 60
Break 11.05-11.25 20
Lesson 3 11.25-12.25 60
Lesson 4 12.25-13.25 60
Lunch 13.25-14.15 50
Lesson 5 14.15-15.15 60

Wednesday

Lesson Timings Minutes
Registration 08.45-08.50 5

Year 7-10, 12, 13 PSHEE

Year 11 Maths

08.50-09.35 45
Lesson 1 09.35-10.35 60
Break 10.35-10.55 20
Lesson 2 10.55-11.55 60
Lesson 3 11.55-12.55  
Lunch 12.55-13.45 50
Lesson 4 13.45-14.45 60
Students depart and complete online work 14.45  

 

 

Answers to FAQs about Safeguarding and childcare

Students who are unable to complete their online work at home, or are picking up siblings at local primary schools on Wednesdays, will be able to complete their work in the library when the other students depart. The library will be supervised with staff who will be able to support them with their work.

Other schools in the area finish at different times to East Barnet School, for example Ashmole Academy 3.25 p.m. and Southgate 2.40 p.m., therefore we do not have concerns about our students clashing with other students.

Answers to FAQs about pastoral support

The changes to the school day allow for more time with tutors on a Wednesday to undertake PSHEE activities. We pride ourselves on the pastoral support we offer students and this will continue to be a priority.

Answers to FAQs about Covid-19 concerns

The plans for the minor changes to the school day have been underway for some time, as a school it is important that we continue to move forward. However, the lockdown has meant that things have needed to be different and we will be reviewing how we ensure that all students are appropriately caught up on the learning that they have missed.

Answers to FAQs about the curriculum

The changes have been made with the curriculum in mind. At Key Stage 3, we have been able to increase the amount of PSHEE and pastoral time by reallocating one period of Enrichment – Triple E. As we value the Triple E curriculum we have kept one period so that students in Years 7 and 8 will still benefit from a weekly lesson, where they will learn skills such as mindfulness and creative writing with our Writer in Residence.

At Key Stage 4, we have completely revamped our curriculum and, starting with our current Year 9s, have moved to offering three options. This change has allowed us to maintain our increased number of hours studying option subjects as well as increase the number of English teaching hours by 1.5 hours a week. Maths instruction has also been increased when we factor in the additional hour of independent study completing Hegarty Maths as well as the additional 45 minutes the Year 11s will be taught on a Wednesday morning.

Sixth Form learning will not be affected as a study period will be timetabled for Wednesday afternoon.

Answers to FAQs about the motivation of the changes

The students at East Barnet School and their learning experience will always be our motivation. We want the pupils at our school to love coming to school, to enjoy their lessons and extra-curricular clubs and to be successful. We want to improve the lunch experience for students, as this is something which we know students have wanted to be better for some time. Professional development for staff will improve the teaching and learning experience we provide and we want to ensure that our students have the best possible education. The Covid-19 experience has and will continue to change education. We can see that the online platforms do not replace the teacher experience but, used in moderation, they can support and enhance students’ learning.

We have been asked if the changes are financially motivated, the motivation is to improve the learning experience for our students. There will, however, be a financial saving and in these difficult times the saving is helpful.

As with everything we do we will review and evaluate the changes to ensure that they are having the desired positive outcome. We will be seeking feedback from parents and carers in December to take in your comments on how these changes to the school day in the short term have impacted your son/daughter.

Yours faithfully,

Leann Swaine
Headteacher

 

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