Principal's Letter - 18th February 2022

Date Published:
Friday 18 February 2022
Dear Parent/Carer,

As we reach the end of what has been a very sad week for our school community, I wanted to write to thank you for your ongoing support. The caring nature of our school community always becomes particularly evident during our most challenging times and this has helped everyone enormously during the course of the past week.  We will be writing to Year 10 parents directly today with information regarding further support we can give to families.


Changes to Year 7 End of School Timings

Year 7 have now settled extremely well into school life.  It was always the intention from the start of the school year to give Year 7 a slightly earlier finish than the rest of the school to support their transition from primary school.  Now that we have reached the mid-point of the school year, we are going to adjust the end of the school day for Year 7 to align with our Year 8 and 9 students, making lesson 6 for Year 7 students slightly longer.  From Monday 28th February, Year 7 will finish at 2.40pm along with Year 8 and Year 9. This is 5 minutes later than their current end to the school day. The end of school time for Years 10, 11, 12 and 13 remains at 2.45pm.


Coronavirus Update

We have always taken an extremely cautious approach towards the management of Coronavirus within school and we will continue to do so in the best interests of everyone.  In light of the recent government guidance around the wearing of face coverings in school, we will be making the following change for the return to school after the half term holiday: the wearing of face coverings will be optional and a personal choice in all areas of school for both staff and students.  This will include classrooms, communal and movement areas.  We will continue to monitor the situation closely and follow any advice from public health in terms of managing Covid-19 in school.  We may, in future, need to revise our requirements on the wearing of face coverings again and we will inform you if this is the case.  The latest information can be found on the “Key Information and Updates” page of our school website, which is easily accessible from the website home page.  Please rest assured that any decisions we take around this will always be in the best interests of our school community.

We have put further information relating to the national Covid-19 vaccination programme into the “Key Information and Updates” section of our website. This includes a list of sites available over half term providing Covid-19 vaccinations for students aged 12 years or above.



From February half term onwards, in line with the PRAISE code, students will no longer be required to wear a school coat to and from school.  However, if children still choose to wear an extra layer for warmth then it must be a JPA fleece or coat.


GCSE and A Level Assessments for Summer Examinations

We now have all of the information from Ofqual in relation to amendments that have been made to final examinations. 

Advance information is one part of a package of measures introduced by Government to support students whose learning has been impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic and is intended to help guide and prioritise revision.  JCQ has published a guide for students and updated FAQs on advance information.


Students_FAQs_Summer_2022.pdf (

Advanced Information is usually only given about broad topic areas that will be assessed in high value questions. It is vital that it is not seen as a ‘statement of all a student needs to revise’.  In most cases all content from across the full course will still need to be revised, as it could appear in lower value questions or be used as material that could be relevant as background or links in answers. Teachers of each subject will guide students on this and ensure that they are well prepared.


National Careers Week

This takes place all week from Monday 7 March until Friday 11 March. The national launch is in Newcastle this year and will be attended by Mrs Strong and a small number of our students.  We pride ourselves at JPA at having a substantial Careers package, which involves quality Careers Education and a wide range of Careers based events.

It only remains for me to wish you all a restful half term break and the opportunity to spend quality time with your friends and family.

Warm regards.


Yours faithfully