JPA - Letter to Parents - 22nd May

Dear Parents

The main reason for writing to you today is to provide an update at the end of this half term regarding a variety of things relating to the coronavirus and its impact on schools.

Work over May Half Term

Pastoral newletters are now available on the school website. They have instructions on Home Learning, useful e-mail addresses and independent learning ideas for half term.  Make sure that you all take time to relax and unwind, even in the midst of the current situation.

The work that is currently set will be refreshed on 5th June.  Please be aware that some end dates might be wrong on the templates due to half term falling in the middle of the 2 weekly cycle.

Please follow us on Facebook and Twitter there is always some thing new and interesting being uploaded along with some superb student home learning work. If any of your children have work that they would like to share send it to Mr Faraday 

It’s been challenging times of late but the reports we are getting from most parents, staff and students is that the Jesmond Park Academy community is making the best of a difficult situation. Much gratitude goes to parents/carers for doing your best to recall French vocab, solve quadratic equations or generally support wherever possible; it’s a real team effort and we cannot thank you enough. We also really appreciate the many kind comments that have been passed on.

Teacher Feedback

We understand that self-teaching is extremely difficult even with the best online resourcing. If this were not the case there would be no point in schools, so we can’t expect to replicate the real thing perfectly. We encourage dialogue between staff and students via our email system so if your child is struggling please encourage him or her to contact teachers directly and they can help. Alternatively, students can access the English Maths and Science forums that have been set up on the VLE.

Re-opening schools - Year 10 and Year 12

At the time of writing we are still no further forward with further Government advice from the Department for Education and Public Health England regarding the re-opening of secondary schools - my update on 14/05/20, which is still on our website, continues to reflect all the Government information at this time. In line with Newcastle City Council and other secondary schools across the city, a 1st June opening to even some pupils seems rushed and unsafe. Nevertheless, we want to get students back into some form of education once we have tested our safety systems so we are keeping fully abreast of all the information and have been discussing various ‘face to face’ delivery models.

You will also find an update posted today on our website from Newcastle LA on this matter. (Link)

Many thanks to those parents that have already completed the survey on our website.  If you haven’t done this yet, please could you do so by the end of Friday 22nd May?  The survey is a preliminary attempt to gauge likely take up, so that we can build this into our risk assessment.  I understand that for many parents, you may wish to wait and see what things look like in terms of both the national picture and specific school arrangements.  You are not committing to anything one way or another at this stage and I will let you know more detail as things evolve.

Free School Meals Vouchers

The voucher system seems to be running more smoothly now and I hope that those of you who have just become entitled to Free School Meals in recent weeks are finding it free from many of the teething problems that plagued the first few weeks.

Please remember that the vouchers provide £15 per week per child, although we set them up in advance so that you may receive more than one week’s supply at once. 

While the government paid for vouchers over Easter, they are not extending the same offer to the half term holiday, nor, at this stage, the summer holiday. As we had already set up the half term voucher, naively expecting the government would fund that week like Easter, this means that the final week of the scheme in July will not include a voucher.  We don’t know yet whether the scheme will continue in September.  This probably depends on the extent to which schools will be open to all pupils by then but we will have a long wait, I think, before the government communicates such a decision.

Uniform and Transition

Please see our website for updates on both of these. 

Have a relaxing half term.

Karen Blackburn

Acting Headteacher


PDF Copy of the letter


Contact Details

Jesmond Park Academy
Jesmond Park West
Newcastle Upon Tyne

Tel: +44(0)191 2818486
Fax: +44(0)191 2810381

Use postcode NE7 7HN, the main entrance is on Newton Road

Job Opportunities:
Current Vacancies and application forms