Good afternoon - I hope you're all well.
We are now less than two weeks away from the end of the most unique of academic years. None of us have ever seen or experienced anything like this before. September started the year with such excitement and energy as it always does- new year 7s joining us, Options for Year 9, Activity Week planned, and so much more. Then, on March 23rd - a date that will forever be etched in our memories - everything stopped. Well, stalled at least. Thanks to our teachers and parents, we never stopped, we kept going strong but soon the teaching and the emails and the home/school supervision will stop for 6 weeks. And breathe.
This coming week we are counting the days to Thursday when we welcome Year 9 back in for a short time. When I say we're excited to see them, that's an understatement. We do this job because we love working with young people, to shape their lives, to give them pathways and this is the last chance we have this year to do that. We've got a lot to share with them: new protocols to follow government guidance, new expectations with regards distancing, new ways of teaching with brand new resources and a new look interior with pictures on every wall celebrating so many of their highlights in the past three years. We hope they like what they see and hear but most of all we hope that they enjoy coming back into LECA. It is their school and this is where they belong.
On a related note, we have ordered a huge amount of resources and revision guides for Year 9 and these are available for parents to purchase now. Please make the most of the opportunity and ensure you get hold of as many of these resources as possible before the summer break, especially the Core subjects of English, Maths and Science. If you need any help with this whatsoever, please call or email Mrs Hedges and she will be happy to help you and guide you to the correct ones. Part of the 'recovery' will mean that students in Key Stage 4 will need to work that little bit harder for the next two years and these are the tools that will help them along the way.
At the end of next week, it would have been the start of our Activity Week. We had so much planned for everyone! A residential, a theatre trip, a cultural day in Cambridge, Maths and Science, Creative writing and much more. At LECA we have always placed huge value on enrichment. Enrichment makes memories of school so much more positive. The experiences allow students to discover new things about the world and about themselves. In some cases, they can make profound differences to perspectives and aspirations. You only have to look to the Law Group to see it - at least two of them are now set on the idea of going to university and reading Law and we will do everything we can to make that happen. So next week and for the final few days of term, I'd like to suggest the following idea to all of our students. Take these last few days to enrich your learning beyond the curriculum tasks you have been set by your teachers. Set yourself a target to learn something new. Pick up a second hand guitar and learn the D C and G chords. If you manage it, you'll be able to play thousands of pop and rock songs that only have those three chords! Imagine what would happen if you learnt E F and A too... Another few thousand songs. What else could you do? Write and illustrate a story; visit a museum (lots are reopening now); go to a gallery and make a sketch or try out one of Mrs Way's art tutorials just for fun. You could set yourself a fitness challenge; research and learn to cook a three course meal and treat your family; learn the basics of a new language; teach yourself how to create a website or a Youtube channel. You have our permission to take time to enrich your learning from now on but the deal is we want to see or hear about what you've been doing. Send us pictures and emails and we will post them, with your permission, on our social media sites. Call it a 'virtual' Activity Week. We look forward to seeing what you get up to.
Further details about Thursday will follow early next week. Then I will be writing to all parents to confirm all arrangements for returning to school in September. This will be with you on Friday.
Have a great week.
Head of School, LECA