Well, we’ve made it to the end of the half term. Well done to everyone: the staff, children in school, children at home and parents and carers at home who have done such a fantastic job with supporting remote education. As a nation, we are expecting the Prime Minister to announce his plans for coming out of lockdown on Monday 22nd February. We are all hoping for a return to normal schooling on the 8th March but if for some reason this does not happen, please do not panic. We will continue to provide all the support we can to those families at home. If we are returning to school on the 8th, as we all hope, then I will communicate the plans with you as soon as possible after the announcement. As you all know by now, we find out what is happening at the same time as you do and so we will need a little time to make sure we have all the measures in place.

What a few weeks we have had since my last message. At school and home, we celebrated Children’s Mental Health Week. As a school we have always valued the importance of looking after our mental health as well as our physical health and so last week we marked Children’s Mental Health week with lots of fun activities both in school and at home and then ending in Year group zoom assemblies where we could all express ourselves through our choice of outfits.  It was wonderful to see all the children on our Zoom assemblies joining in with this theme as well as the children and staff in school and there were some amazing outfits.

This week saw the return of our popular ‘Well-being Wednesday’. I think everyone has appreciated the time to do activities that don’t involve screen time and ease the pressure of remote education- I have loved seeing what the children got up to on Seesaw.

Our fantastic Learning Mentor, Mrs Simpson, has been busy supporting our families at home and in school. Please do contact her if you feel she could help your child in any way. She has also posted a stone painting project on Seesaw for the children so please do watch out for that. If you could get a stone(s) and paint/colour some positive messages on them, then bring them to school, there will be a box in the office entrance to leave them. (The box will be there Monday 22nd February to Wednesday 24th February). Mrs Simpson will then line them up outside the school wall so that anyone passing can take a positive message who needs one. It would be nice to brighten someone’s day and know you have played a part of it. You can also take one, and then maybe add another when you see one that means something to you. Anyone can do it, so get the whole family involved!

It was so wonderful to join some of our KS1 children who are at home for a virtual cook-along on Wednesday. My son particularly enjoyed eating the banana cheesecake that we made. I will also be attending the KS2 one this afternoon where we are making spring rolls, which The Crowther family will then be having for tea. If you couldn’t make either of the sessions, the recipes are on the Phunky Foods website.

Mr Pascall has been working hard on our remote learning section of the website so that all information is in one place. On there you will find links to emotional and well-being support, links to access our remote learning platforms, advice for parents on supporting home learning and our policy.  https://greetlandacademy.org.uk/parents/remote-education/

You will have all seen the letter that Mrs Ashton put on Seesaw about World Book Day. We could not let lockdown ruin our chances of celebrating this day. The children and staff in school can come in dressed as their favourite book character and those children at home are also encouraged to dress up and will be given the chance to show their costumes on a Zoom assembly. We really are looking forward to the window decorating competition and ‘Where’s Walley Hunt’ around Greetland and don’t forget that the children at home can also opt to join a story session with any one of our teachers in the afternoon.

So it just goes to say that I hope you all have a lovely half term break before we start again on the 22nd. I am proud every day to lead such a fantastic school with such amazing children and staff and supportive parents. Make sure you all try and take some time for yourselves as I know how challenging the last 6 weeks have been for you all. We have big plans for when we do finally get all the children back in school which I will share with you in due course.

We will get through this together.

Keep safe

Mrs Crowther