Letter to 6th form Parents/Carers – 6 Jan 2021

Trinity-House
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Dear Parents and Carers

First of all, I hope that you are adjusting as well as possible to the guidance given by the Government last night. In light of the announcements made, I wanted to write to you and students to make the current position as clear as possible for our Sixth Formers.

Examinations Update

Firstly, I am aware that many students and families are worried about this summer’s A Level and BTEC examinations. It was said last night by the Prime Minister that “exams won’t be able to take place in their current form.”  And that Gavin Williamson would be working with Ofqual to determine the course of action.

From this, it is clear and absolutely crucial that all Sixth Formers must continue to work at the same high levels that they have already so far since September. This is to ensure that students are prepared and ready for whatever solution is provided for the outcomes of their studies. It also, even more crucially, ensures that they continue to receive a high level diet of learning that will keep them up to date and ready for their return to the Academy following this lockdown. Currently, a large number of Year 12 and 13 students are about to start a set of BTEC examinations in the Academy this month. These are still going ahead, which again highlights the importance of all Sixth Formers in Years 12 and 13 working to their very best every day from home.

Live Lessons and Google Classroom

I am incredibly proud of the work and effort that students have given whilst working from home over the last year, and we are now in a position where for the rest of this half term at least this will continue. I am liaising and supporting all teaching departments to ensure that lessons are interactive, live where possible and relevant. Teachers will be teaching lessons over Google Classroom which will follow students’ timetables, so they must be ready to sign in to lessons at their normal times as if on site. As always, I am grateful for your support in ensuring students are following these timetables. Teachers and the Sixth Form Team will be monitoring online participation and will be in touch with students if they have any concerns. Please also get in touch with the Academy if there are any issues with connectivity and access to lessons. A common issue with connecting to live lessons from home has centred around ensuring microphones and cameras are set up on personal devices. Please access the link below to troubleshoot this issue:

Tutor Reflections and Welfare

As you know, Sixth Formers have not attended morning Tutor Reflections and Assemblies since September to reduce contact time on site. As of today, I want all students in the Sixth Form to meet with their tutors at 08.30 each morning online via their tutor group Google Classroom. This will give students the important routine of daily contact, and allow them to share any concerns or questions with their tutors. As well as this, the Sixth Form Team are always available to support with student wellbeing. We understand that this is a difficult time for some and want to reassure you that students’ well-being is paramount to us. The Sixth Form Team are available via telephone or email to support students with their welfare, so please do not hesitate to get in touch.

UCAS

Year 13s who have applied to UCAS will now be receiving offers from universities. Once students have had responses from their 5 choices, it is important that they email the Sixth Form Team on Bede Learning to arrange a meeting to discuss their options. Each university and college will make their decisions at different times, meaning students might hear back before others do, or vice versa.

Students can find some useful information here:

https://www.ucas.com/undergraduate/after-you-apply/ucas-undergraduate-types-offer

https://www.ucas.com/undergraduate/after-you-apply/types-offer/replying-your-ucas-undergraduate-offers#types-of-reply

It is important that students carefully consider their options before making a decision. Once a place has been offered, the university cannot withdraw the offer, so there is no rush. If you receive your last decision on or before 20 May 2021, your reply date is 10 June 2021 (except if you’re using Extra to find a place).

For Year 12, the UCAS process is just about to begin and Mr Sutherland will be arranging sessions over the coming weeks to prepare them for this; focusing mainly on getting the most out of Unifrog and adding value to a personal statement. Information about these sessions will be shared on the ‘Year 12 UCAS’ Google Classroom:

https://classroom.google.com/c/MTkxODQzNDM2NTIx

I hope that the key messages here are clear. Despite the challenges we are facing, I am very much looking forward to the continued success of all our students in the Sixth Form.

Yours sincerely

Mr D Lloyd

Head of Sixth Form

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