Dear Parent / Guardian,
I trust that this blog finds you and your family well. As we enter the remaining days of the term, I wanted to outline some key features of school life.
The new school website has now gone live. You can access it at www.ljhs.co.uk. You will see that it contains lots of information about our school and in particular, contains details about our routines and procedures as we move forward as a school. I congratulate all of our expert teachers who have worked very hard to make the website as exciting as it is, especially Mrs McCrory who has admirably led all of our efforts.
There is a designated section on the website for new pupils in Year 8 in September and this contains a variety of videos, presentations and guidelines for incoming pupils. With that said, however, I would encourage all continuing pupils to watch the routines videos and read through the information as well, as this will be very important for when we return to school in August/September, to ensure that teaching time is not lost and that pupils and staff return to school safely.
In addition, I would draw parents’ attention to the Home-School agreement located in the section entitled ‘Documents for Parents’ in the Year 8 section of the website, and would kindly request that this is signed and returned to school - either by post, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org Again, it is important that all parents sign this so that our return to school is safe.
I remain very proud of all of our pupils who have engaged so well with the e-learning programme that we have provided. Indeed, I give credit to all of our pupils who have displayed fantastic levels of resilience throughout this crisis and who have kept up to date with all of the challenges inherent in e-learning. I have no doubt that such robust study will stand our pupils in good stead when they return for the next academic year.
We also remain exceptionally proud and thankful for all of our parents, who have tried their utmost throughout the last few months to keep their child focused and on task at home. We are indeed blessed to have parents who, like us, value high-quality learning experiences for their child. On behalf of the Governors and staff, I extend my thanks again to you for the many kind words of gratitude that have been extended to us in recent weeks. Our job, as always, is made much easier through the generosity of spirit that you have displayed.
Pupils were appreciative of the consolidation days that were given to them last week and in recognition of this, I have granted further consolidation days towards the end of the term. These days are: Thursday 25th, Friday 26th, Monday 29th and Tuesday 30th June 2020. Work will be on Google classroom on Monday 22nd June, as normal, and pupils should continue to work on this until Thursday when final consolidation and review of the robust programme created for them should begin to take place. On these days, pupils will not need to work on Google classroom.
Year 10 Prefects
I am delighted to report that the prefects for the next academic year have been chosen by staff. An email to individual pupils who have been selected to serve as prefect next year will be sent to their gmail accounts early next week. Pupils who are currently in Year 9 should therefore keep an eye out for a potential email to their account. Staff are currently nominating pupils for the positions of Head Boy, Head Girl and their deputies and when the results are collated, pupils will be informed in due course. I congratulate all of the pupils on this tremendous achievement. Well done!
In order to gauge current IT access at home in preparation for next year, Mr Logan has requested that all parents complete the online survey that he has set up for this. This can be accessed at: https://forms.gle/WYgYRYUdchFHnrvHA
Previously owned Uniform
Thank you to all parents who have left in previously owned uniform to school. Your kindness is much appreciated. Further details on how you can procure previously owned uniform for your child will be posted on our Facebook page next week.
You will undoubtedly have heard in the media in recent days much about proposed plans for the return of school. We are indeed looking forward to a time when we can have our pupils back in the building with us; it has been very lonely without them over the last few months!
Like all schools, Lurgan Junior High School, is facing many challenges as we prepare for a ‘new normal’, but we are determined to get things right by our pupils and to meet the challenges that lie ahead with the same degree of proactivity and optimism that we met the onslaught of the current ‘lockdown’ period.
Pleased be assured that there has been significant work going on behind the scenes in order to plan for what we believe is the most likely scenario in August. I appreciate that many parents will have many questions around the nature of the educational provision, social distancing, school meals, transport and much more. However, I hope to be in a position over the next few weeks of giving you a broad outline of the processes that school will be implementing next year, so that your concerns can be addressed.
You will be aware that just yesterday evening, the Department of Education issued guidance to all schools in Northern Ireland and our Senior Leadership Team will consider this guidance in the context of our school in order to ensure that we get things correct in light of advice given.
The consolidation days outlined above, will also afford our expert teachers some valuable time to plan for next year’s teaching, whether through the medium of face-to-face contact or through our online platforms.
As you know, the situation with COVID-19 is very fluid, and this degree of fluidity may impact on our plans. Nonetheless, I assure you that I aim to communicate with you over the summer months to give you as much clarity and certainty as I can. As always, my communication will be signposted on our Facebook page.
Finally, I tender my sincere thanks to you again for your continued support and kindness. With renewed best wishes to you all.