3rd April 2020
Dear Students and Parents
Today brings to a close surely the strangest school term in living memory. As so many of society’s norms, school expectations, and personal plans have changed in recent weeks, we have all been coping with change, loss and adjustment. I should like to begin by extending my thanks to you all for handling everything so well. Everyone in our community has been very understanding and worked cooperatively together at this stressful time. Although we have been working “remotely” now for two weeks an enormous amount of school work has been undertaken and a lot of learning achieved.
New ways of working – congratulations on a great start
So far 81% of the student body has been regularly logging on to Show My Homework and I know some having been viewing work although they have lost their password. A reminder that we have a password reset option, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are feeling lost or uncertain about any aspect work please ring the Helpline 07468672740.
On Monday of this week we opened the portal for returning work for marking and feedback: email@example.com and we have already had over 1000 separate email feedback conversations. I know that a number of students have been using websites such as www.freesciencelessons.co.uk Obviously we do not track your use of these, but we do receive feedback from site such as https://hegartymaths.com The total number of questions answered for HM in the last two weeks is 29,574 (until Wednesday 1 April) with the following totals: Year 8: 6958, an average of 51 questions per student; Year 9: 6752, an average of 57 questions per student; Year 10: 8052, an average of 78 questions per student.
These are extremely impressive statistics, however I know that we are going to exceed them next term.
Thank you to your teachers
I should like to thank all of our teachers for preparing and marking work for you and for all the ideas and resources they are currently developing. I know some of you have already entered the competitions found on Show my Homework using: firstname.lastname@example.org There are a number of competitions and quizzes which are being developed and these will be rolled out on Show My Homework next term. I should like to thank Mr Cajkler for coordinating our teachers in this work and also Mr McCaughey who is staffing our telephone helpline for your enquiries. Thank you also to the Heads of Year who have been keeping in touch with a number of students and families, we plan to develop our ways of staying in touch next term including fortnightly newsletters from each of your Heads of Year.
Today, however marks the last day of term and it is important to say that it is time for students and school staff to have a rest. Accordingly we are not setting any holiday work during the next two weeks – although you may wish to finish up work not yet done or to revise, and you are welcome to use any of the online materials we have directed you to. During the next two weeks the helpline will not be available and work submitted by email will not be acknowledged or marked.
End of Term Assembly podcast
So much has happened in recent days that it would be easy to forget what a busy and memorable term we had up until 19th March 2020. Thanks go to all staff and students for such a busy year to that date. In order to give thanks to God for all that has happened, a small team of people, students and staff, who have been based in school in recent days have put together an end of term assembly. As part of this we have tried to remember some of the wonderful things which happened in the earlier part of the term and mention them in assembly. If we have inadvertently left some things out please forgive us, but do email me to remind me and we will include these on another occasion. For this and any other correspondence, I can be reached via email@example.com
You can listen to our End of term Assembly podcast via the school website. We decided to make a podcast as this uses considerably less band-width and will therefore be accessible to more people. I would like to thank all those who have helped produce this assembly and those whose music making was recorded at other liturgies and reused here. These recordings were not made with a view to broadcast so my apologies for the sound quality. Thank you to Miss Ace, Mrs Bishop, Mr Butler, Mr & Mrs Leonard, Mr Noakes, Mr O’Donnell, Mr Simeone and the Schola Cantorum (Soloists James and Szymon), Sienna, Noel, Nellie and Olivia. Special thanks to Mr Naran for recording and producing the assembly.
The new term begins on Monday 20th April and there will be new work available then on Show my Homework.
Our prayer life during Holy Week and Easter
Thank you for praying the School Prayer each day, please continue to do that.
Going to Mass
Obviously it is not possible to go to Mass at this time, however it is possible to attend online using various Facebook and You tube feeds. I have found these helpful:
The Dominican Community of Holy Cross Leicester celebrate Mass twice each day at 12.30 and 18.10, this can be found on: https://www.facebook.com/holycrossleicester/
The National Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham is also live streaming Mass, Adoration and the Rosary. https://www.walsingham.org.uk/live-stream/
Evening prayer from the ecumenical community in Taize, France https://www.taize.fr/en_article27540.html
Good Friday Stations of the Cross
Tom Baptiste and the Diocesan Youth Service invite you to join in the Stations of the Cross for Good Friday. There is a separate letter about this on the website – please do join in if you can.
A prayer in this time of crisis
Almighty and most merciful God,
who loves the human race,
who heals all our wounds,
in whom there is no shadow.
Save us in this time of crisis,
comfort the sick and the dying,
the isolated and the afraid;
Be with us, in our need.
Grant wisdom and courage to our leaders
and all who are responsible for the common good.
Watch over everyone who is working in our national health service
as they tend the sick,
all who are supporting the vulnerable,
and those who are working for a cure.
Stir in us a sense of solidarity beyond all isolation;
if our doors are closed, let our heart be open.
Our Lady of Walsingham, Our Lady Health of the Sick, Pray for us.
May I wish you and your families the strength and consolation of the Holy Spirit at this difficult time and the joy of the Resurrection this Easter.
Please stay at home, protect the NHS, save lives.