ARRANGEMENTS FOR STUDENT RETURN IN JANUARY 2022
As we move towards the Christmas holidays, we wanted to update you on our plans for the end of the school term and the return of students in January.
The last day of the school term is Friday 17th December. Jesmond Park Academy will close with a slightly staggered finish by year group around 12.15 pm on the last day of term. We will be maintaining our current Covid-19 control measures in school for the final week of term and continuing these measures into the new term when we come back in January. Students will return with a staggered start in January. All of the latest up to date information regarding Covid-19 can be found, as usual, in the ‘Key Information and Updates’ page of our website.
Covid-19 LFD Testing Information
During the Christmas holidays, we are strongly encouraging families to continue with asymptomatic testing on Wednesday and Sunday evenings. Students need to have a supply of test kits to support this before the end of term and can get these from their Year Team office in school if needed. Test kits are also widely available and they can be collected from your local pharmacy or ordered online at www.gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests
As you may already be aware, it has been announced that schools will be required to test all students with consent once on their return to school in January before they return to the classroom. The testing of students remains part of the measures put into place to keep the school as safe an environment as possible for all students and staff. Testing is voluntary but strongly encouraged. As a school community if we can identify and isolate cases, we reduce the risk to others, minimise disruption to our students’ learning and, in doing so, help slow the spread and relieve pressure on the NHS. For students to participate in the testing programme we must have already received a completed consent form. We will carry any already completed consent forms forwards from the earlier rounds of testing.
However, if you did not consent for your child to be tested in the previous round of testing and you would now like them to be tested you can visit the ‘Key Information and Updates’ section of our school website and complete the consent form, which is also at https://www.jesmondparkacademy.org.uk/article/2021/2/9/covid-19-mass-testing-in-gosforth-group-schools
Please note that we need to receive your consent form as soon as possible and at the latest by Wednesday 15th December. You will appreciate that this information is important to support a considerable amount of planning. If, for any reason, you wish to withdraw consent for testing for your child you can email firstname.lastname@example.org However, although it is voluntary, we encourage your child to continue participating in the school testing programme. Students aged 16 or over can self-consent using the online form link.
Covid-19 LFD Testing and Return to School Programme
Due to the requirement for us to conduct testing on return, the number of students that are likely to require testing, and the need to safely manage any positive test results, we will need to carefully phase the return of students back into school. Period 7 time may be used for afternoon testing up until 3.30 as required. Please note that the testing dates/times below are only for students who have given consent for testing.
The programme for testing will be as follows:
Years 12 & 13 –Tuesday 4th January AM for testing. Students need to arrive at specific times, based on their preferred surname: A-E 8:30am, F-J 9:10am, K-O 9:50am, P-T 10:40am and U-Z 11.20am. Students may wait in the test venue for their test result and, if negative, remain in school, or go home after testing and return for lessons following a negative result. Normal lessons for all Year 12 & 13 students will begin at 1:05pm on Tuesday 4th January.
Year 11 –Tuesday 4th January for testing only (in school uniform). Students need to arrive at specific times, based on their preferred surname: A-B at 1pm, C-G at 1:30pm, H-L at 2pm, M-Q at 2:30pm and R-Z at 3pm. Students will return home as soon as possible after testing on this day and normal lessons for all Year 11 students will begin at 8:30am on Wednesday 5th January.
Year 8 –Wednesday 5th January for testing only (in school uniform). Students need to arrive at specific times, based on their preferred surname: A-B at 8:30am, C-G at 9:10am, H-M at 9:50am, N-R at 10:40am and S-Z at 11:20am. Students will return home as soon as possible after testing on this day and normal lessons for all Year 8 students will begin at 8:30am on Thursday 6th January.
Year 10 –Wednesday 5th January for testing only (in school uniform). Students need to arrive at specific times, based on their preferred surname: A-B at 1pm, C-G at 1: 30pm, H-L at 2pm, M-Q at 2:30pm and R-Z at 3pm. Students will return home as soon as possible after testing on this day and normal lessons for all Year 10 students will begin at 8:30am on Thursday 6th January.
Year 7 –Thursday 6th January for testing only (in school uniform). Students need to arrive at specific times, based on their preferred surname: A-B at 8:30am, C-G at 9:10am, H-M at 9:50am, N-R at 10:40am and S-Z at 11:20am. Students will return home as soon as possible after testing on this day and normal lessons for all Year 7 students will begin at 8:30am on Friday 7th January.
Year 9 – Thursday 6th January for testing only (in school uniform). Students need to arrive at specific times, based on their preferred surname: A-B at 1pm, C-G at 1:30pm, H-L at 2pm, M-Q at 2:30pm and R-Z at 3pm. Students will return home as soon as possible after testing on this day and normal lessons for all Year 9 students will begin at 8:30am on Friday 7th January.
On their testing day, only students that have consent for testing must come into school at their allocated time. Students without consent for testing must not come into school on the testing dates/times listed above. Students must enter through the South Drive gates and proceed along the outside drive to the PE quad near the gym.
Following on-site tests, students that have consented to testing will need to take a test 3-4 days after their on-site test and then continue to test twice weekly at home and report their results to the NHS and school through our website links in the ‘Key Information and Updates’ page of our website. We will continue to supply test kits to support testing during term time.
To minimise lost learning during the first 3 days, when on-site LFD tests are taking place, students will be provided with remote learning activities via the OneDrive folders which are accessed through the classroom pages of the VLE. In addition to this, most teachers will be assigning an activity via the Frog Home Learning platform, and we will also be delivering some live lessons in the core subjects via Microsoft Teams. Links for these will be sent nearer the time via the students' email addresses. It is therefore vital that students check their emails on a regular basis.
Young Person Vaccination Clinic to Open in City Centre
Children between the ages of 12-15 will be able to attend a walk-in vaccination clinic at the Grainger Market. Each Saturday, between 10am – 5pm, young people will be able to attend the market for a vaccine without an appointment. Previously, this age group could only be vaccinated in school or through appointments from the national booking system. Children should attend with a parent or carer. The clinic will offer vaccines to everybody over the age of 12, not just children and young people.
Year 11 Mocks
Due to on-site testing, and to give students slightly longer to revise, we have made the decision to delay the Year 11 mock exams by four days. These will now start on Monday 10th January.
Summer Exams 2022
As mentioned in previous updates the government still insists that it is “firmly committed to exams going ahead in summer 2022”. The full contingency guidance to schools regarding Teacher Assessed Grades should exams not go ahead as planned can be read in the link below:
The main points from this guidance are below:
- Subjects which have NEA should complete this fully as they will be marked and moderated in the usual way if exams do go ahead, which is the current plan.
- Ofqual recommends that schools complete three internal assessments ensuring that there is an early one if the pandemic disrupts later in the academic year (Autumn/early Spring term) and later ones (Summer term) when more recent evidence is available.
- With the exception of Art and Design qualifications, guidance states that students taking internal assessments should not know questions beforehand, they should work independently during assessments without assistance and should not have access to books or revision notes.
- Assessments should be timed and supervised but can be done in classrooms.
- Students in Maths and Science will have access to formulae sheets, as they would if real exams go ahead.
- Wherever possible, all students will be assessed using the same material at the same time. This may not always be possible, therefore assessments will be covered at broadly the same time and cover the same content.
- The total assessment time should not exceed the exam total assessment time.
- Assessments will cover broadly the same range of content as the exam.
- Assessment materials will follow exam papers, where possible, and marked using exam board criteria.
- Wherever possible, students should be told in advance when the assessments are happening so that they can revise and prepare thoroughly.
- No resits.
- Special consideration should be raised before the assessment or immediately afterwards.
Subject areas are tweaking their assessment plans in light of this guidance and with the students’ best interests (personally and academically) in mind. The Year 11 and Year 13 mock exams scheduled for next half term may count should exams be cancelled.
Keeping You Up-to-Date
The ‘Key Information and Updates’ page on our school website is continuously updated, so please check back there regularly for the latest information. This page is easily accessible from the school website home page.
Rest assured that we want to manage the return to school in January as safely as possible and minimise the risks to staff and students. As a result of this, the return to school has been carefully planned by year group and staggered over a period of time in line with DfE guidance. We will continue to keep the safety of everyone in our school community at the very centre of our approach.