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Coronavirus Updates

Following the Government’s most recent Covid-19 update on Sunday 10th May it is important to note that there are no immediate changes in the education or child care provision made by schools.

Therefore, schools will continue to provide distance learning support for students and child care for Key Workers who have provided 24 hours notice of their intention to use the child care facility. 

 

As you will be aware, the government has announced the expectation that Secondary schools will begin a phased transition to school based learning during Term 6 for selected Year Groups.

 

We are working closely with the Local Authorities and the Department For Education to ensure the most effective and safe return to school for students and staff. We will be in contact you shortly to update you on our plans. Please continue to check your mailboxes and this website for updates. Thank you for your continued support.

 

For any key worker whose child is not currently using our childcare facility, and who subsequently becomes unable to provide childcare at home –  you must give the school 24 hours’ notice that you need to use this provision so that we can provide appropriate staffing. This means emailing r.martin@tsatrust.org.uk or calling 03333 602130 by 9am the day before. For Monday provision, please ensure that you contact the school by 9am on the preceding Friday.  Students arriving without giving 24 hours’ notice may be turned away if we do not have adequate staffing. To access this provision, you must also have downloaded and completed the form that can be found here and you must bring it with you to the school when you arrive.

Years 10 and 12: Please see important Covid-19 update from 21.05.20 here. There has been a further update sent on the 01.06.20 – please see the email sent home.

Years 7, 8, 9, 11 and 13: Please see important Covid-19 update from 22.05.20 from here.

Please see letter to all parents from Ms Gould here.

For useful learning resources from Medway Libraries, please see here. 

For pastoral support resources, please see here.

For all letters sent home about Coronavirus, please see here.

For information about accessing Microsoft Teams, please see here.

For information about accessing Show My Homework, please see here.

For resources for Year 11 into Year 12 students and those Year 13 students going into Higher Education, please see here.

Admissions 2020/21

We are currently awaiting further advice from the Department for Education about how appeal deadlines may be affected by the current COVID-19 restrictions on schools. In the meantime, we would encourage anyone who still wishes to appeal to do so. Further advice will be provided to all appellants as soon as it is available. All admission appeal forms should be emailed to admissions@holcombegrammar.org.uk. Please do not bring them into school.

Free School Meals

Following on from the recent government announcement that the free school meal (FSM) e-vouchers, we have registered all students entitled to FSM with the DfE provider who will be distributing the e-vouchers using the email address you have provided to the school. We have not been advised when the first voucher will be sent, but any delay will not affect your entitlement. If you requested a printed voucher, these will follow on once we have received them but are subject to postal delays at present. Any queries, please use the following link: https://www.edenred.co.uk/Documents/DfE/DfE_FreeSchoolMeals_ParentCarerFAQs.pdf

Thinking School

What is a Thinking School?

An educational community in which all members share a common commitment to giving regular careful thought to everything that takes place. This involves both students and staff learning how to think reflectively, critically and creatively, and employing these skills and techniques in the co-construction of a meaningful curriculum and associated activities. Successful outcomes are reflected in students across a wide range of abilities, demonstrating independent and co-operative learning skills, high levels of achievement and both enjoyment and satisfaction in learning. Benefits will be shown in ways in which all members of the community interact with and show consideration for each other and in the positive psychological well-being of both students and staff.

Burden, 2006.

The Six Starting Points

The journey to becoming a Thinking School involves a strong commitment and careful planning.

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Key Points for Our Trust

  • Children first: To provide a stimulating learning environment for all where learners feel safe to explore knowledge and understanding. We believe that children learn best when they are motivated, clear about expectations in their work and behaviour, feel valued, secure and confident, are challenged and receive constructive feedback about their performance.
  • Aspire: To be the best they can be. We believe that all staff and pupils can aspire for personal and professional prowess and become empowered through the Thinking philosophy.
  • Challenge: To actively shape the minds, attitudes and habits of young people through a framework of cognitive education that enables them to become the master of their own destiny. We believe that pupils require an accurate reflection of what they are good at and need to develop personal insight and manage uncertainty confidently. Developing skilled, independent, reflective learners is part of our Vision.
  • Achieve: For all stakeholders to demonstrate the highest levels of thinking and habits. We want our pupils to be questioning in nature, achieving the highest levels of independent and interdependent prowess.

Thinking Approach

Our “Thinking School” approach is consistent with the aims below and helps to ensure that:

  1. Pupils in TSAT are supported to think for themselves, through the development of a thorough understanding of purposeful thinking tools that they can use to aid and monitor their own progress.
  2. Staff in TSAT are encouraged to think accurately and reflectively about their practice and understand a range of thinking tools that can be used to support student motivation and progress.

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Feedback from Exeter University on recently accredited schools within our Trust

  • Isambard Brunel Junior School – 2017: “It was clear from the lessons and part lessons I observed that children are very familiar with the tools and strategies, and both adults and pupils were using them confidently and in a range of ways to support and scaffold thinking and learning, develop deeper questioning and to probe for reasoning.”
  • The Portsmouth Academy – 2016: “Students were both articulate and aspirational, and it was clear from the discussion that they not only know about and use a range of thinking tools and approaches, but also have a strong sense of ownership, see them as central to their learning.”
  • The Rochester Grammar School – 2016: “Through thought-full, passionate and inspirational leadership combined with a relentless drive for excellence, ongoing self-evaluation and review and the willingness of governors, staff, pupils and parents to embrace exciting and innovative ideas, the school continues to provide an excellent example of effective cognitive education in action. Cognitive approaches are so embedded in the ethos and culture of the school that it feels as if the school is ‘drenched in thinking!’
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