Keeping our expectations HIGH and our spirits UP!
Newsletter 15- Thursday 7th May
Dear Parents/ Carers and CHILDREN of Tudor Primary,
It has been two weeks since I was able to share the last Tudor newsletter. In some ways, it must feel like a long time because time does certainly appear to pass more slowly when you are restricted in the number of things you can do! ‘Lockdown’ is something that none of us would have ever predicted pre-2020 and it brings new challenges for us all.
I remain incredibly proud of the teaching team at Tudor and I believe that we are demonstrating a strong commitment to each and every child’s ‘Home Learning’. The main area of positive feedback we are receiving is the personal and bespoke interaction that children and families are able to benefit from. From the outset, we wanted to maintain the partnership of #TeamTudor and we wanted families to know that we would be determined to engage your children.
Speaking as a parent (and Headteacher), planning and delivering home learning to children is not an easy task and this is why we are taking your expectations of us very seriously. Whether school is open or closed, teaching is a two-way process between families and school and if we have similar aspirations for success, the potential for our Tudorites increases. Of course, children can push the boundaries with people they trust even more and families are likely to experience issues they have never had to respond to before- it’s all about doing our best and wanting the best for children in our care.
In respect of the above, please DO contact us so if you would like us to assist you with anything. We have shown that we can respond in a range of ways- from home visits, provision of vital items, to signposting you to vital support services, #TeamTudor can help!
It does not necessarily get easier does it!
In most things, the more you do something, the easier it gets but in this extended period of social restrictions it could be said that the opposite is true. Whilst the children (and parents!) are becoming more expert at using online learning tools and supporting the children’s learning, the stresses of limited freedoms will be taking their toll. Do aim to keep that ‘fair balance’ of expectation on your children appropriate and give them achievable targets in what needs to be completed. As my last newsletter stated, the vast majority of children need clear boundaries and expectations- whatever they actually ‘say’, they do want to be guided and led! It is the unknown that makes us feel uncertain and less confident. It has been pleasing to see so many children sending in pictures, videos and comments about their successes but it has also been pleasing to see that children have also responded well when the teachers have asked them to further improve and/ or enhance their work. Expectations for your children remain HIGH at Tudor, in work and in behaviour and that is key for any school. There is a wealth of information on our website about wellbeing as well as parenting support. Do make sure you stay informed.
Talking of the unknown…
I am writing this newsletter ahead of further government guidance and information about the easing of restrictions. I would obviously like to be able to share clear dates about school reopening dates and/ or how the school will deliver the return of our wonderful children to school but I am unable to do so at present. I trust that our recent actions evidenced that we are a school that responds carefully and methodically and we aspire to plan for (and deliver) the reopening of school effectively and efficiently. There is some increasing evidence that schools may be partially (or even more so) open to children from the start of June but, at this point, this is still unclear. Potential ideas could include part time opening (eg Monday- Thursday), reduced hours, different cohorts for morning/ afternoon, etc. Each idea comes with advantages/ disadvantages and some families may not want to (or be able to) send their children back into school when school does reopen.
Please be assured that we remain keen for children to be back in our classrooms as soon as possible but this MUST be done safely. Like all schools, we have a number of staff who have particular health needs either themselves or in their immediate families. ALL remain fully involved and, whilst some teachers are working fully from home at the moment, every single child in Tudor is being supported by THEIR teachers and TAs that they know and trust. Our school has remained fully open from the start of this health crisis and we have ensured in- school teaching provision to a large number of children (of all ages). Staff have continued to work through all the holidays and I have had to a have a few conversations with teachers who are currently delivering teaching support (and responding to emails/ requests) from early morning to (very) late at night- I have a duty to the staff team’s wellbeing too and I will always take this seriously.
Keep going and we WILL see you soon
As you are likely to agree, this pandemic has brought out the best and worst in society. Whilst we get frustrated at those who do not think of others, I do believe we will be able to look back at some (more) positive experiences. Our school community really did come together and we have been able to ‘connect’ in some super ways. I would encourage you to have a look through our school blogs on the website as well as the thread of fun stories on our school twitter pages (accessible from the website too). There are children sharing their talents in a range of ways and, in many ways, we have been able to see some super skills that we would not have normally encountered. From children jamming along on instruments with their teachers (check out Jack and Mr Munro on the year 6 blog) to children presenting the weather forecast and creating their own adverts, many of you have helped make us smile on so many occasions. I have lost count of the number of times a teacher has sent me an email about how an awesome piece of work has ‘made their day’.
We really are in this altogether and I encourage you all to keep working with us over the next period of time. Children only get ONE chance at an education and our young learners are being given challenges that none of us have had to experience before. As headteacher I must always pledge to remain an optimist and keep a positive mind-set. If I allow myself to look on the bright side, this challenge that we are all facing may actually help bring us all more closely together and help us all recognise that things work best when we look out for each other.
Thanks to all the key workers!
Stay safe everybody and stay #TeamTudor!