Welcome to the Head's Blog! Please visit this page regularly for news, information and updates from Blisland Primary Academy.
Matt Avery, Head of School.
Well, somehow we are in July and only have two and a half weeks left until the summer holidays: our last day will be Tuesday 21st July.
Good news! Over the summer holidays our school will have the new log cabin installed. When we can have group assemblies, projects and indoor PE lessons during the rainy months, it will be such a useful asset to our school.
Also, over the holiday period, new fire doors and systems will be installed in the main building. Not only will this benefit us from a safety point of view; it will also give our school and classrooms a new lease of life. A big thank you to our academy trust (Bridge Schools) for their endeavours to gain a successful bid for CIF funding to enable this.
Reopening in September:
Following yesterday's announcement and the releasing of guidance from the Department for Education (DFE), we are excited and beginning preparations for reopening for all children from September. There is a lot for us to get our heads around but we are certainly up to the challenge and will be thrilled to see you all in September. The first day back for children as it stands will be Monday 7th September (Thursday and Friday of the previous week will be for staff to prepare in greater depth for the start of the new term). Before the end of term, we will give you more detail about how we will be reopening for all year groups while following any guidance. Information from the government around this can be found by clicking the link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/what-parents-and-carers-need-to-know-about-early-years-providers-schools-and-colleges-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak/what-parents-and-carers-need-to-know-about-early-years-providers-schools-and-colleges-in-the-autumn-term
Home learning and summer activities:
Over this challenging period we recognise that it has not been ideal to work with the children at home and at certain points I am sure the novelty of home-learning and the excitement of not being at school wore off. However, any work you are able to do and complete will make a difference, little and often is the best approach. We have resources and some lesson activities on each class page. If you require any specific work or activities to keep brains busy over the summer, please email Mrs Hawker: email@example.com by the end of next week so we can organise as much as we can and make the work either available for collection, but if not possible, we can post to you. Do look back at previous class and head's blogs as there may be work there you haven't accessed yet and links for activities such as the summer reading challenge.
Currently we are operating 2 bubbles for learning and care during this time; unfortunately both bubbles are at capacity and we will not be able to accommodate any more pupils until we reopen fully in September. Please accept our apologies, I know at this point, as you recognise your child's need to be in school or as lockdown restrictions are relaxed you may need to go to work, you may desperately be in need of a space for your child but for reasons beyond our control, this is not possible.
In the meantime, please get in contact with us if we can support in some way remotely or by sending work.
Have a lovely weekend; best wishes,
(Head of School)
Happy Friday everybody!
I hope that you all continue to be well and if you have started back at work or have braved the shops, it has been successful.
This week we welcomed back more of our pupils to school, and they have settled brilliantly. I am very grateful to our hardworking and very caring staff who are making this work, but also to all of you parents, as your children are truly well loved and cared for at home.
Online library service (loan e-books)
Last week I mentioned that the summer reading challenge has started. You can with your library cards, and through the borrow box, access online e-books and audio books. With the BorrowBox library app, you can browse, borrow and download amazing titles by your favourite authors from the comfort of your own home or when you’re out and about. You can get the app from the App Store or Google Play and start enjoying incredible eBooks and eAudiobooks straight away via your local library.
Google app link: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.bolindadigital.BorrowBoxLibrary&hl=en_GB
Apple app link: https://apps.apple.com/gb/app/borrowbox-library/id562843562
Android (kindle) app link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bolinda-digital-BorrowBox-Library/dp/B00F84CAMY
Cornwall school virtual games:
Every year Cornwall holds 'Routes to the games' and Cornwall games events for children to participate in sports competitions and festivals. Obliviously it has not been possible this year; but they are from next week running a virtual schools game that we have signed up for. This will happen for children who have returned to school in school but you can also get involved at home. Below are links to the different activities this week. You can send us your results on the day of the activity or upload it yourself via the form which there is a link to below. I wonder how well we could do?
Opening ceremony: https://www.youtube.com/user/getactivecornwall
Speed Bounce: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/athletics_-_speed_bounce_activity_card.pdf
Standing High Jump: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/athletics_-_standing_high_jump_activity_card.pdf
Standing Long Jump: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/athletics_-_standing_long_jump_activity_card.pdf
Monday's Results Link: https://forms.gle/Aa9LF2Z2gg2FLqFZ9
Knock’em Down: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/bowls_amp_boccia_-_knockem_down_activity_card.pdf
The Target: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/bowls_amp_boccia_-_the_target_activity_card.pdf
Tuesday's Results Link: https://forms.gle/uDzpe2upXS1HkkVs5
Hip Hop: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/dance_-_hip_hop_activity_card.pdf
A Sequence: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/gymnastics_-_a_sequence_activity_card.pdf
Wednesday's Results Link: https://forms.gle/vsBZ1qQcZhMmgmbX9
The Serve: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/volleyball_-_the_serve_activity_card.pdf
Hot Potato: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/volleyball_-_hot_potato_activity_card.pdf
Flick & Catch: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/volleyball_-_flick_amp_catch_activity_card.pdf
Thursday's Results Link: https://forms.gle/wqfiQM6Bg5bNk6Mq8
Continuous Rally: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/tennis_-_continuous_rally_activity_card.pdf
Continuous Volley: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/tennis_-_continuous_volley_activity_card.pdf
Target Shooting: http://www.activecornwall.org/files/tennis_-_target_shooting_activity_card.pdf
Fridays Results Link: https://forms.gle/jCmpXfi8wRT7Co738
We do seem to be moving, as a whole nation, towards a more normal situation and I hope you are feeling more optimistic. I sincerely hope, like the Prime Minister mentioned today, that we can return to full-time education in September. If we can do anything else to support you, please do get in touch - we will endeavour to do our best to help.
So we have been able to open up to critical workers, Year 6 and Year 1: now we are able to welcome back our reception children. Unfortunately, it now seems likely now that we will not fully reopen until September. It is a bitter shame as I like you, would like the children back in school but safety must come first. We keep our fingers crossed that we come through this tricky time swiftly and smoothly, and everybody stays well.
If at this time you child is unable to come to school and you need physical copies of work as accessing the online tasks is difficult, please email or ring us so that we can organise getting the resources to you. We will continue to put resources online for the children to access - do send us you work so we can give you credit for your work and feedback.
As we all use the internet and online services a lot more than usual at the moment, there are those in society who may use it more for negative reasons. Please see the post below this blog to get up to date information and support about being safe online.
Summer reading challenge:
The Summer Reading Challenge combines FREE access to books with fun creative online activities; this year it has been extended and was launched on Friday 5th June and run until mid-September. How the Challenge works: Children sign up online to the Digital Summer Reading Challenge https://summerreadingchallenge.org.uk/. The website will be free to access, featuring games, quizzes, digital and downloadable activities to incentivise and encourage children and their families to take part in the Challenge at home. Although library buildings are closed, libraries will also continue to deliver the Challenge through virtual services and e-lending platforms i.e. Borrowbox, Facebook and Twitter. Children taking part this year will be asked to set their own reading goal and we are keen to see if this encourages take up and completion. However, we will still be suggesting six books as the best goal to try for. Children who complete their Summer Reading Challenge will be able to download a certificate. Please open the PDF below which has more information.
Do continue to take care as we move towards fewer restrictions during easing of lockdown and keep in touch. If you need support or advice of any kind, let us know - we will endeavour to do our best to help. If you need to ring us but there is not answer, please leave a message and we will get back to you the same day.
This week we have successfully and safely reopened to Year 6 and critical worker children. I would like to say a big thank you and well done to the staff, children and parents for working hard to support this. Next week we are opening further for younger critical worker children and Year 1. When we know numbers and next week's return has been successful, we can assess our capability for further opening under the Department for Education's (DFE) guidance.
'Bubble 1' (Bubblebusters):
Our older children have returned well and in good spirits. They have completed some great work this week: news reporting on positive stories, considering mental health, solving challenging (and infuriating) maths puzzles and learning to safely socialise. They have named their bubble "Bubblebusters".
If you choose to send your child back to school (if they are eligible) and there is a day that they don't attend, whether they are poorly or do not need to access to provision, please ring or email so we can make sure with use the correct codes for authorising their absence on our, and the DFE, registers. If you choose for your child not to attend, you Will Not be penalised.
Please do keep sending us any work or other activities you get up to whilst you are unable to attend school as we would love to see it. We will try soon to have shared school and home projects so the children can virtually collaborate on some tasks. We may also be able to have, for KS2, school and home 'Kahoot' quizzes: I will let you know soon how these may work.
Guidance on home learning can be found here:
Looking out for your wellbeing and safety:
At this time it's as important as ever to ensure safety of children and families. A link to "Whisper" is still embedded to the top of the head's blog and if you have any concerns, you can click the link to anonymously inform us. If the safety concerns are serious you can contact MARU directly: Tel. 0300 1231 116 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org I hope you all have had a nice 1/2 term (I know it perhaps doesn't really feel like a 1/2 term) and I look forward to seeing some of you on Tuesday 2nd June and hope to see as many of you as safely as can be before the end of July.
Take care and best wishes,
(Head of school)
Apologies for the long delay in the latest head's blog. It has been a busy week as changes and guidance happen for the phased reopening of schools and I was keen to give you as much information as possible. I am pleased to inform you that Blisland will begin a phased reopening from Tuesday 2nd June (Monday 1st June will give us time as a staff to test run safety procedures) - starting with Year 6 and vulnerable and critical worker children. We will then begin to plan wider opening to Year 1 from Monday 8th June after evaluating our 1st week back.
As we roll out these phased openings we will assess our capability to run safely on a day-to-day basis and will keep you all updated. Please do listen out for government updates as we hear these at the same time as you and bare with us whilst we try our upmost to follow DFE guidance for safely opening more widely. We and the trust will update you as often as we can.
Information and links for parents around reopening: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/closure-of-educational-settings-information-for-parents-and-carers?utm_source=4ab56278-c893-4606-8ea7-88944da36f57&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate
As these times are completely unprecedented and some things can move at a fast pace, I have attached a link to the king's college Covid-19 tracking app (Separate to the soon to be released NHS test, track and trace app). It can give advice on supporting returning to school as well as providing a link to a symptom tracker app. This may help with a local and nation response to check flare-ups of the virus and the increase of the much talked about R value as we gain more freedom of movement and with school staff and children returning to work: https://covid.joinzoe.com/post/children-school-covid
Thank you for the work that you have sent through, there have been some excellent pieces over the past week: As school begins to reopen and staff are working on site, it will be more challenging to set detailed work as regularly. We will set tasks to complete during this time and will sign-post you to useful resources. If there is anything in particular work wise you feel you may need for your child, please email their class teacher and we will do our best to support you. Information and links for parents around remote/home learning: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/help-primary-school-children-continue-their-education-during-coronavirus-covid-19?utm_source=41daaba4-0e53-4fa4-a853-0bc2234f363f&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate
Phone calls: When school reopens from 2nd June, Mrs Harrison and Mrs Pearce will make phone calls home to you. However, if you would like a phone call or a video phone call, we could, from school with a couple members of staff organise a video phone call through an app called: "Microsoft Teams" If this is of interest to you please email: email@example.com and Mrs Hawker will help us organise this.
Looking out for your wellbeing and safety: At this time it's as important as ever to ensure safety of children and families. A link to "Whisper" is still embedded to the top of the head's blog and if you have any concerns, you can click the link to anonymously inform us. If the safety concerns are serious you can contact MARU directly: Tel. 0300 1231 116 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
I hope you all have had a nice 1/2 term (I know it perhaps doesn't really feel like a 1/2 term) and I look forward to seeing some of you on Tuesday 2nd June and hope to see as many of you as safely as can be before the end of July.
(Head of School)
Thank you to all who have sent different aspects of their home learning in to us. We do like hearing from you and knowing that you are all safe and well. Please remember to take part in any aspects of learning you have the time and means to do. This week for KS2 we will set some interesting challenges for showing and completing your work.
It has been great for our staff to speak to most of you last week. If you have n't had your phone call yet (I know I have 3 still to make), don't worry you have not been forgotten, your teachers have been quite busy and will call you this week.
Schools' Phased Reopening - 1st June:
We are sure that like us, you have lots of questions following the Prime Minister's announcement last night. At the moment, for us in school, there is no change to the guidance, so we will be continuing to operate as we have over the last few weeks. We will continue to provide essential child care for key worker families as well as vulnerable children (this is happening through hubs - our hub is Wadebridge Primary Academy). The message remains that it is safer to stay at home. We appreciate this is a confusing time. If you require information about access to child care through our hubs, please email. I completely understand that some of you may be feeling anxious about these phased change but rest assured we will always make the right decisions for the children's and your wellbeing - the reopening of schools are still subject to review. Once we have assessed the new information and reviewed the guidance on how to manage a safe, phased return we will of course keep you informed.
Below is detail for parents with questions and answers - this information is subject to change:
As we reach the end of the 2nd lockdown period, I would like to say well done to our families for working hard during these difficult times. I truly hope that the optimistic messages that we are moving to a new phase in all this so that we can better support the children and yourselves at this time.
During this time, unfortunately not everyone sees the common goal, the common good and perhaps sees inappropriate opportunity. With the current situation see us having to be online more often please beware of the need to check content that children may be accessing. As mentioned earlier in the year, games such as Roblox are open to many people and there have been reports of adults trying to communicate with children.
Further more, sadly through Zoom this week local under 8 football team online coaching sessions were hacked and they were exposed to inappropriate content. Do be mindful of this when attuning video group chats.
Please see the link from the NSPCC for keeping safe online:
The week beginning the 4th May staff from Blisland will call around to speak to yourselves to see how you and the children are and if we can help further in any way. The calls will come from a withheld number.
Many thanks for all the different work that has been sent to us. I have seen siblings collaborating on stories, children working on phonics, studying countries, writing poems and cooking. it' great to see and hear about the work you are doing and how you are keeping yourselves busy. Please remember at this time do as much or as little as you can. Also do check the daily and one-of lessons on the BBC Bitesize home learning pages:
Thanks to Bex Ivins have now a really nice 'Time Capsule' PDF which I was trying to find to share with you that children might like to compete. Please see the attached pdf at the end of this blog
Take care and I hope you are able in some form enjoy and celebrate this Fridays bank holiday VE Day 75th anniversary.
We are now heading towards the end of the first week of our second 3-week 'Lockdown'; I hope that you have been able to enjoy the weather in your home spaces and have kept safe, well and busy.
Many thanks for sharing examples of learning and activities which you have been doing this week. It is great to see both work completed which your teachers have set you and the additional activities which you are doing at home.
Please remember that the work set is not compulsory so please do as much as or as little as you are able to.
BBC earlier this week made their learning activities live with some very good daily lessons linked to different subjects. Children can access these lessons by subject and/or age group and I encourage you to look at these alongside any other learning you choose to do - set by teachers or activities you and parents have chosen.
https://www.dk.com/uk/information/home-learning-for-kids/ https://www.walker.co.uk/grown-ups/activities-for-home-and-school.aspx https://www.bbc.co.uk/teach/class-clips-video/science-ks1-explain-this/zn9dwty https://www.worldofdavidwalliams.com/elevenses/ https://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/for-home/find-a-book/library-page/ https://www.nhs.uk/10-minute-shake-up/shake-ups
If you have concerns about you child's wellbeing or their vulnerability, please get in touch with myself asap.
Whisper: We have a link with 'southwest grid for learning' during this time to use an online form called Whisper with the icon link at the top of the head's blog page where you or children can click and write to us anonymously about any concerns that they may have for themselves or others. Below are some links that may useful to support children health at this time and further contacts who may also be able to offer support but do try to speak to myself first as their may be help I can offer or other organisations I can put you in touch with.
To keep up to date with support for families, you could follow the children and families social media feeds at:
Other helplines :Day and night time wetting advice and support - free help line – 08081699949 www.eric.org.uk
For any concerns about continence product delivery contact the CAL line or your School Nurse if you have those details. If not please contact me.
Family Information Service The Family information service offers advice and guidance for children aged 0-25. Tel: 0800 587 8191 or 01872 323535 (these numbers can take messages)
Mental health and well-being government links: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-supporting-children-and-young-peoples-mental-health-and-wellbeing?utm_source=fa3d37ff-b04e-4a75-b247-6fc3a89d94b0&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate
Multi-agency Referral unit (For urgent safeguarding concerns):
Telephone 0300 1231 116
Notes: For urgent referrals after 17:15 or at the weekend call the Out of Hours Service on 01208 251 300
I am glad that teachers were able to contact you this week and to hear how well you are. We will try to ring every other week to see how you are and if we can do anything. If you need to contact us, our emails can be found on the previous two blogs.
Have a lovely and safe weekend,
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From June 29th 2020, Blisland Primary is open only for children of key workers, vulnerable groups, Reception, Year 1, Year 6 and Year 5 children. We will update parents and carers regularly as the situation changes.
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