Headteacher Update - Friday 9th January 2022
I would like to start by extending my thanks to you all for your on-going support to the school and for your feedback last term as students return after the Christmas break.
Tuesday of this week saw high numbers of students taking Lateral Flow Tests on site before school began on Wednesday and I am very pleased with how students have returned to school and are contributing to our calm corridors and purposeful classrooms. They are following well our expectations of:
We have returned to school after the holidays with new guidance from government in relation to measures to combat COVID-19. Can I remind you to speak with your child to continue to support the school in the requirements that all students who are not medically exempt should wear a face covering in classrooms and in all communal areas whilst on-site. Benfield continues to have an effective risk assessment in place. Due to COVID-19 staff absence remains an issue but I would like to reassure parents/carers that we prioritise keeping all students on-site and experiencing face-to-face teaching in the current climate, but also have on-line subject resources available to support any student who is unable to attend school via the remote learning section of the website.
Last half-term all students in key stage 3 undertook baseline tests in subjects and changes have taken place this week to sets in Years 7, 8 and 9 in all subjects with students being placed in groups based upon ability. These groupings will continue to be reviewed across the remainder of the year following half-termly assessments.
Homework has been restructured for this term for all year groups and will now operate over a full half- term with a common theme across a number of subject areas so that student skills, learning and understanding of key links is interleaved. Further details will follow in the coming week.
Activities that take place outside of the academic curriculum- clubs, games, societies are a high priority for us at Benfield- they develop social skills and new experiences as well as opportunities for leadership and interaction with a wide range of young people whilst learning new skills revealing hidden talents. I would like every student at Benfield to participate in at least one – please look at our offer on the school website and encourage your child to choose and participate this New Year.
We continue to work with students to engage with quality first teaching and make sure that attitudes towards learning meet school expectations. This term we have developed our student behaviour support provision further so that any student who needs support with their learning or behaviour will be supported by our behaviour team in an alternative calm learning environment. Students will be required to hand over their mobile telephones for safekeeping which will be returned at the end of the session. This provision aims to avoid suspension and is therefore mandatory. This will happen in response to serious acts of inappropriate behaviour which hinders the learning of others or whose attitude towards staff is unacceptable. Senior staff and Year leads will apply an agreed referral process before a referral is made and parents/carers will always be informed. Targeted intervention and support will be put into place before students are placed back in to lessons.
We have welcomed a number of new staff to Benfield this week and there have also been some changes to the pastoral team. Year 9 will be led by Mr Lawson following Miss Thackray leaving this role and Miss Liddle-McGhee will be taking lead of Year 11 from next week as Miss Bullock leaves us to take up a new post in another school. Mrs Hall will be taking lead of our sixth form students from next week.
I continue to prioritise improving communication between home and school this term and I will be seeking further feedback from yourselves on this and other areas of the school as I release an on-line parent/carer survey this half-term.
I look forward to sharing the successes of our students and Benfield with you across the Spring term.
Richard Carr, Headteacher
Cookies are small data files that are placed on your computer or mobile device when you visit a website. Cookies are widely used by online service providers in order to (for example) make their websites or services work, or to work more efficiently, as well as to provide reporting information.
Cookies set by the website owner or service provider (in this case, eSchools) are called “first party cookies”. Cookies set by parties other than the website owner are called “third party cookies”. Third party cookies enable third party features or functionality to be provided on or through the website or service you are using (such as advertising, interactive content and analytics). The third parties that set these third party cookies can recognise your computer both when it visits the website or service in question and also when it visits certain other websites or services.
We use first party and third party cookies for several reasons. Some cookies are required for technical reasons in order for our Services to operate, and we refer to these as “essential” cookies. Other cookies enable us and the third parties we work with to track and target the interests of visitors to our Services, and we refer to these as “advertising” or “analytical” cookies. For example, the embedding of YouTube and Vimeo videos, as added by individual schools, will require “advertising” cookies to be enabled in order to successfully play them. Schools that, for example, opt to track visitor data using Google Analytics will require “analytical” cookies to be enabled in order to do so. These third party cookies are used to tailor content and information that we may send or display to you and otherwise personalise your experience while interacting with our Services and to otherwise improve the functionality of the Services we provide. We also enable schools to employ cookies and similar tracking technologies in connection with their use of our Services in order to allow them to track visitors to and interactions with their school website.
Our Services allows schools to embed code which may potentially contain cookies. Please note embedded content, if displayed on one of our websites, has been added by the school and not by eSchools. The embedded content added by the school may require additional cookies or tracking technologies to be enabled in order to function.
You have the right to decide whether to accept or reject cookies. Be aware that cookie preferences are set on a per device basis; therefore you may need to set your preferences on each device you use.
Initial cookie pop-up banner: You can exercise preferences about what cookies are served on our Websites by selecting your preference from this modal which appears upon visiting an eSchools website/login screen and dashboard. You can also change your cookie preferences by clicking on the link on the footer of any page. The banner will reappear annually (August 31st to coincide with the academic year) to confirm your settings.
Disabling Most Interest Based Advertising: Most advertising networks offer you a way to opt out of Interest Based Advertising. We will not, without your express consent, supply your personal information to any third party for the purpose of their or any other third party's direct marketing. If you would like to find out more information, please visit aboutads.info/choices or youronlinechoices.com.
Mobile Advertising: You can opt out of having your mobile advertising identifiers used for certain types of Interest Based Advertising, by accessing the settings on your Apple or Android mobile device and following the most recent published instructions. We will not, without your express consent, supply your personal information to any third party for the purpose of their or any other third party's direct marketing.