Mrs Eatock's Letter to families

29th January 2021

28th January 2021

 

Dear Families,

Whoever would have thought we would still be in this situation, but as ever, the Beech Hill family has risen to all of the challenges and are working together brilliantly.

You might have seen the Prime Minister’s announcement that schools will not fully re-open after half term.  Like you, we want all of your children back in school with us, but not until it is safe to do so. We will keep watching and listening to advice from the government and our local authority to make sure we come back when it is right for everyone.

You may have heard some people saying that schools have been closed, however we know better! Since lockdown last March, we have been offering places to children of key workers and those who are vulnerable as well as providing amazing on line learning.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone, not least the staff in school, but also you at home for supporting your children with their learning and to the children themselves who are doing a brilliant job of working in a very different way. Please remember that ‘learning’ at home may look very different – as well as the brilliant lessons your children can do – I know that it is sometimes difficult to motivate your children to do everything (as a mum of a 14 year old I can sympathise entirely), watching some BBC content; cooking; going for a walk or playing a board game can also count as learning. Don’t beat yourself up – we all know that you are doing the very best you can do.

Lots of things are going really well and we should be very proud -

There is lots of engagement and extremely positive working relationships between home and school. Dojo and Tapestry have been brilliant in allowing parents and children to communicate with the class teacher and vice versa and the recent Zoom calls have been very popular indeed- they sound a hoot! From Ted making an appearance to hair style challenges, the Beech Hill spirit is alive and well! I have seen some wonderful exchanges and fantastic evidence of parents and teachers working together to support the children through this challenging way of learning and I love looking at the work on Dojo – you have been a busy lot.

There are a small number of children and families that we haven’t heard from for a while now, even though teachers have tried contacting them via Dojo, or Tapestry, phone calls and emails. If you have not been in touch with school and your children aren’t accessing online learning, I would ask you to give school a ring otherwise we may have to contact outside agencies to do a welfare check – we want to know that you are all safe and well.

We have used the voucher scheme throughout for children in receipt of free school meals. Each child receives a voucher to the value of £15 per week. In addition, we have supported families in any way we can – don’t forget to get in touch if we can help with anything – we are always open.

We have applied for laptops and ipads from the government. Many of these have been given out to families so that children can access the online learning. Some of you have told us that paper packs are better for you and your child so these have been made available too. If you think you would benefit from having some extra technology, please ring the office and we’ll see what we can do!

Of course we have seen some of the negative impact of school closure and this new way of working but largely we are seeing a cohort of children whose characters are shining through as they deal with this. They are demonstrating great resilience and perseverance and we could not be more proud! I know that when we do all come back to school, they will adapt easily and quickly; all of the staff can’t wait to see everyone back together.

As ever, I will keep you up to date with any new developments or dates as we hear them. Hopefully the Government will give schools notice which is helpful to us all.

 

With love and best wishes

Mrs. J Eatock

Stay safe!