E-newsletter 70

Grendon Newsletter
  E-newsletter #70 Tuesday 5th January 2021  
  Hello Visitor,

As you will no doubt appreciate, the last 24 hours have been an incredibly challenging time for schools. Many thanks for the countless supportive emails that I and other members of staff have received since last night's school closure announcement and also for sharing feedback with us about ways in which we can work together to ensure the best possible outcomes for our pupils.

Today has been quite a rollercoaster of collating Key Worker registers, allocating workspaces,  making contact with families of vulnerable children, clarifying DfE guidance, updating risk assessments and reviewing our school approach to remote learning in light of the the prospect of this new, extended school closure. Apologies if I and other members of staff have not been able to respond to you today.

I met with teachers earlier and we spent a good deal of time discussing our plans going forward now that we have had a little more time to process the immediate impact of the latest school closures. 

Early indications are that approximately 35-40% of our school population will continue to attend school as part of our key worker & vulnerable children group which represents a significant increase on the previous take-up before the summer. This leaves 60-65% of pupils who will be working remotely during the latest lockdown.

Remote Learning Strategy

In order for our Remote Learning Strategy to evolve from a tool to manage short periods of self-isolation to one that suitably reflects the extended time that children must now be away from school, the following progression was agreed in a Teams meeting that I had with teaching staff earlier on today.

Week 1 (WB 4th January)

Teachers will make contact with parents today, signposting them to the first of their fortnightly Learning Grids, providing a Teams invite to a meeting this week (which individual teachers will advise you of) and clarifying expectations around remote learning eg; the requirement for children to submit work daily 

Week 2 (WB 11th January)

Teachers will introduce a daily Teams video call, with the focus on engagement - we would like as many children as possible to participate and so these initial meetings willl be informal oppotunities to talk or perhaps share a story. Staff are mindful that children are returning from an exciting Christmas break and many children went to bed on Monday night fully expecting to be in school on Tuesday and so we expect that they will have much to discuss. 

Week 3 (WB 18th January)

Daily Teams video calls continue during this week and will be focussed around a specific activity on the Learning Grid (the focus and the date of delivery will be identified on the Learning Grid and so you can use this to help you prepare). It is intended that the input will then allow children to independently work through the task. As the Teams calls will follow the Learning Grid activities, they will naturally cover the breadth of the curriculum over each two week block. 

As always, the school will continue to review its practices and will revisit our approach to remote learning as we become more aware of which aspects are working the best. Your support and feedback are important aspects of this process.

Microsoft Teams

The school has invested a significant amount of time in familiarising children with Microsoft Teams which is the chosen platform to support our Remote Learning Strategy. 

(Courtesy of Miss Jenkinson) I have attached a short guide to access Microsoft Teams and video calls here which I hope you will find useful.

ICT Equipment

With this new lockdown, it is important for us to gain an up to date picture of which children do not have access to an Internet capable device. The school may be able to help with this and so please let me know if you do not have the capacity to access the Learning Grids or Teams video calls - just email me on  

Wraparound Care

Regrettably, both Get Active and our in-school early morning supervision will not be able to operate until further notice.

Key Worker and Vulnerable Children

For those children attending school as part of the key worker/vulnerable child group, please wear school uniform to school. PE days will be advised by class teachers.

There will be 2 pupil groups - KS2 and KS1/EYFS.

Key Stage 2 will be taught in Pine Class and the KS1+EYFS group will be in Cedar. Children should make their way to these rooms at the start of each day. Miss Jenkinson and Miss Hillman will teach the KS1+EYFS over the course of each week and Miss Steed, Mrs Gookey and Mrs French will teach the KS2 group. Each group will be supported by Teaching Assistants.

  Grendon Church Of England Primary School
Main Road
Tel: 01933 663208