Letter from the Head - 10th September 2021
In this issue: Back to school, and an update on buses
I hope that your children have enjoyed their first week - especially if they are new to the school! Before I share some of the highlights, there are two notices I wanted to share:
First, a big thank you for your support with COVID testing. We processed around 2,000 tests between Thursday and Tuesday, which screened out around 10 positive cases (all of whom were asymptomatic!). Although the rules for schools have significant relaxed, I'd be hugely grateful if you can continue to support us in keeping the school as safe as possible by testing regularly at home and reporting the results here.
Second, I'm aware that there have been some issues with the Number 10 bus, particularly in the morning. I have written to Stagecoach and will update you all when I receive a response. I'd also encourage you to share your views with Stagecoach directly. In the meantime, I'm very sorry for the inconvenience I know it is causing many of you.
Moving on, it's been a real whirlwind of a week! We have around 1,250 students on roll this year (an increase of almost 200 since 2019) which has created an excited buzz around the school. It's been particularly great to see students moving around the whole site again to go to different lessons.
As always, your children have been wonderful. I have been struck by how happy most of them seem to be back at school, and how polite and cheerful they've been each morning. As many of you know, I try and do gate duty most mornings, and it's been lovely this year to have so many students wish me good morning without me saying it first! They're helping us create a lovely atmosphere around the school which visitors can't help noticing; we had a visit yesterday from colleagues from across the Greenshaw Learning Trust and I was really delighted to hear their feedback that relationships between staff and students felt very warm and genuine. We thanked the students with chocolate today, which I hope they all enjoyed!
Lessons have also been superb. We were keen this year to get stuck in as quickly as possible, and walking round the school this week I've seen focused students in every single classroom, with every student making the most of their lessons. As the school has grown, we've welcomed a number of new staff who have all settled in brilliantly; again, the thanks go to your children for making them feel so welcome. My funniest moment of the week was without a doubt watching a Year 7 giving directions to a new member of staff as if they'd been here for years! With all our new staff, some of the contact details have changed; you can check these here.
It's important that we keep this momentum going, and to that end, homework resumes next week. For most of you, this will be exactly the same as previous years, but if you are new to HP or would like a refresher, you can find further details here.
Finally, can I remind those of you who may have children in Year 5 and 6 that our Open Evening takes place on Wednesday 15th September. Pre-booking is essential; you can find the full details here.