I am writing to provide you with the information about the next steps and processes required to be able to successfully complete the LFD tests at home. This is so important to maintain safety in our community and students are gaining confidence in the swabbing process.
Testing at S6C and at home
Despite some anticipated nerves about taking a lateral flow test, students in both year groups have taken it in their stride and have dealt with the process calmly and with maturity. The process has been led by support staff and volunteers from Wiltshire Council, and more details are explained in the weekly college update.
By Tuesday 16th March, the majority of students will have completed their 3 lateral flow tests, which is the recommended expectation before students are issued with test kits to complete at home. They are only licensed for students that have had adequate trained supervision, so it is important that all students inform us if they have missed a test opportunity so that we can reschedule this promptly and issue their tests. Year 13 students will receive them on Monday after their third test and Year 12 students will receive them on Tuesday.
Students will be provided with an information guide with their test kit, but an electronic copy of this information is attached here:
Students and staff are asked to complete 2 tests each week thereafter, 3 to 5 days apart. We would recommend that the first test is taken 3 – 5 days after their third test in college. For many students a test in the evening may be more manageable and less time pressured than early morning before college. We have not yet received a timescale of how many weeks we are asked to undertake the tests, so we will update you when we know.
When to have a confirmatory PCR test
The Department for Education has confirmed to schools and colleges that when secondary aged students receive a positive LFD test at an Asymptomatic Test Site set up such as at S6C, then the student and other members of their household must self-isolate. A confirmatory PCR test is not advised.
When secondary-aged students begin to test themselves from home, a positive LFD result should then be followed by a confirmatory PCR test. If the student then tests negative on the PCR test, this will override the test they took at home, and they will be able to return to college.
The DfE state that this is because LFD tests taken on test sites have extremely low rates of false positives, because these tests are done in a controlled environment and trained staff read the results.
It is important that all students record their results in the final step of the process on the NHS site either using their phone or computer. This is explained in the booklet and is a quick and straightforward process. Not only does this allow large data sets to be analysed by the scientific community to review rates in the local area, but it also provides an accurate usage count for the next distribution of test kits arriving on site for staff and students.
The Department for Education has also asked S6C to keep our own records of test results for staff and students. A google form will be shared on the google classroom for students to record the result, it is designed to be simple and quick . All results need to be reported to the college so that we can determine what steps we may need to be taken . A copy of the form can be found here. Student Home LFT Results Form
It has been a delight to have students back on site, great to hear their laughter and chatter, and seeing students exchange birthday gifts after missing key celebrations with their friends including 18th birthdays. Students are feeding back that they are appreciating the time to take masks off in extended breaks and they seem genuinely pleased to be learning again and interacting with everyone. The college community feels safe but vibrant and we couldn’t feel prouder.
Further communication will be sent to students and parents today to update about our Lateral Flow Device Test process and the preparations for home testing. A letter will also be communicated to provide our guiding principles of the Teacher Assessed Grades and how as an academy of Magna Learning Partnership we are planning for a unified approach across the Trust. The finer detail will be shared with students and parents later next week in a follow up letter.
Lateral Flow Device Testing – Kathryn Clarkson, Business Manager
This week saw the return of the students to the college and with it, the task of testing all the students 3 times, 3 – 5 days apart began. The S6C team have set up testing in the Theatre and Dance studio and, so far, the testing has gone extremely smoothly. This Herculean task could not have been completed without the support of the wider Salisbury Community; thanks must go to Winterslow Parish Council for loaning us the polling booths so swabbing can be done in privacy, the MLP Central Finance and Estates Team for pitching in with Volunteers, Wiltshire Council Staff and Volunteers for helping with swabbing and processing and the S6C Support Staff for running the whole thing so efficiently. Finally, however, the biggest thank you needs to go to the students who have been just brilliant and patient during the testing. It has been so lovely to get feedback from volunteers who have never been to the college before; ‘ everything ran smoothly and the students were fantastic’ and ‘ Thank you to everyone for having me today, it was actually a really enjoyable morning and the staff and students were all very kind and helpful. ‘ Testing continues into next week and, on completion of the third test, students will be issued with home kits for further twice weekly testing.
National Careers Week – Rosie Roberts, Careers Lead
S6C marked National Careers Week 1-6 March 2021 by looking at how students’ current study relates to the world of work. Teachers were able to share information on careers that relate to their subject, enabling students to look at what the jobs involve and different routes into that career. Students were provided with links to virtual work experience opportunities, as well as other valuable career resources.
Year 12 student Ella said, “Careers Week has given me an insight into clinical psychology and allowed me to gain an understanding of what values and qualifications I might need to undertake that role. I have had the opportunity to look further into the next steps I may need to take if I were interested in a path in clinical psychology. I also found it useful that careers week linked to our current topic in psychology as we were looking into the explanation and treatment of depression.”
Year 12 student Jess said, “During careers week in psychology, we focused on the role of a Clinical Psychologist. The application of the work we are currently doing to major job roles really provided me with more of an incentive to continue with my hard work in Psychology, and all of my A-Levels, due to the fact I can become successful and gain a high status job. I was not aware of the amount of successful jobs that can come from further studies of Psychology, the college is extremely helpful when it comes to considering our future, not just throughout careers week! They help to give the work we do, more of a purpose. Making us aware that we can do so much with the courses we are currently doing.”
International Women’s Day – Rosie Roberts
On Monday 8 March, S6C welcomed Vicky Burvill, Senior Climate Officer at Wiltshire Council to speak to our students through Google Meet.
Vicky shared with us her career journey including her background in environmental science and sustainable planning. She also informed students about what she’s doing to support environmental issues in our local area and how our students can get involved – she shared a link to a public consultation for interested students to respond to.
Students were then able to ask Vicky questions about her career journey as a female working in environmental organisations and also about environmental issues – particularly issues that affect Salisbury and the local area. Vicky answered questions such as, “what do you hope to achieve in the future and are there any projects you would like to work on?” and, “The council are planning on mitigating against climate change. What actions are in place for a temperature rise?”
Business teacher, Catherine Pennington said, “I thought it was great because so much of the sustainability overlaps with the Business and A Level syllabus. It was also informative for careers advice for the students.”
Baking Club Update – Sally Tye, Faculty Lead for Humanities
We are currently still running a weekly online enrichment schedule for the remainder of term 4 and one of those is Baking Club – this week Sally Tye taught the students to cook a giant cookie in a slow cooker. Here is a photo of the wonderful result from Maggie Shelley in year 12:
Creative Faculty Update – Rich Eno, Faculty Lead for Creative
Our internal heat for the ARTiculation Prize happened last week and we are proud to announce that Freya King won with her talk and presentation on the silent films of Georges Méliès! Richard Eno, Head of Creative, said that, “Freya gave an impassioned talk about the work of the famed director and artist Méliès but more than that, it was poetic, full of empathy and inspiring.” Freya will now to go the next heat, which is held at Roche Court. The link is here: https://www.articulation.org.uk/
Our planning has been finalised for the return of our students next week and staff are very excited to see our wonderful students in class. Our risk assessment has been updated and a new version is available on the website under our Statutory Information.
All staff have been working on site for the last few days and predominantly teaching again from their classrooms. Staff have completed their lateral flow tests this week and we have welcomed some students back today to have their tests. Most students should have received their allocated appointment time to arrive in college on Monday or Tuesday. If this is not the case, please do email email@example.com and we will address this quickly.
We know that most students are really looking forward to returning and establishing good routines again in both their learning and social interactions in the community. For others it may feel quite an anxious time, but I want to reassure all students that we are here to support their return and help with concerns they have.
I think parents/carers will agree that our staff have been exceptional in their care and support through lockdown and I would like to publicly thank them for not only working to keep college routines as normal as possible, but also the time they have selflessly given to our young people that have needed extra support and care. I’m incredibly proud of our team.
If your family routine is similar to mine, it will be refreshing to discuss on the weekend what the plans are for the week ahead, and for us to have exciting news to share.
Life Skills Programme – Rebecca Anderson, Pastoral Lead
This week, tutors met online with all students for a live session to prepare them for return to college – including information on testing, lessons next week, and wellbeing.
We have updated the Covid-19 section on Information Classroom with various representations of the roadmap so that everyone knows exactly what they can do when, and the rationale behind this.
With the easing of lockdown on the horizon (a timely reminder to all of us that most restrictions are still firmly in place, and must remain so until safe) we felt it timely to share details for the excellent Frank website. Our message to students is that drug use is not safe, and therefore, risks can never be fully managed. However, rather than closing the topic down, we would like students to be well informed and actively engaged in educating themselves. This website includes very level headed, fact based information on drug use. They also offer a free 24/7 anonymous helpline for young people, friends, parents/carers and can answer questions and concerns. https://www.talktofrank.com/
Humanities Faculty Update – Sally Tye, Faculty Lead for Humanities
Over the past 6 years we have participated in an incredible project which is hugely important to the development of our young people- The ‘lessons from Auschwitz’ project. Over the years it has provided an opportunity for a number of our staff and students to not only hear direct testimony from a holocaust survivor but also visit the camps in Poland. This year unfortunately students will not be able to travel to Poland but 4 students will be taking part in the project through a series of seminars. This will be the last generation to hear about the holocaust from those who lived through it – an incredible experience for our young people. As part of the project they will have a responsibility to educate others about what they have learnt in the hope that such tragic events will never be repeated. Look out for their ‘next steps’ project in the coming weeks!
STEM Faculty Update – Kirsty White, Faculty Lead for STEM
Congratulations to our students who have been awarded a place with Great Western Hospitals for online work experience. They will mainly be focusing on Clinical Psychology, healthcare, nursing and midwifery. The placements were extremely competitive so a huge well done to these students for achieving a place! The students are: Hannah Coleman, Isabelle Richardson, Francesca Lloyd, Megan Cowdrey, Ella McGrail and Imogen Primmer. We look forward to hearing about their experiences and what they have gained from it. As part of National Careers Week, we are encouraging all of our students to start considering work experience – speak to your subject teachers if you need more guidance!
Creative Faculty Update – Rich Eno, Faculty Lead for Creative
Students in our Software Design and Development course are designing an application that S6C can use for future students to look up courses, then champion the best designs to take forward to the senior team and Student Union. In doing this, they are learning how to work in a team and utilise best practices and techniques for online collaboration, design and development that are used in large corporations such as Google, Apple and Microsoft. Esports continues to attract new students to start their exciting new course in September 2021. Staff are busy planning for students to learn many different skills to work in this expanding industry, such as marketing, coaching, nutrition, event management and starting a business. Students will also get the opportunity to take part in the British Esports Association UK wide tournaments.
To maintain social distancing on return to college, we have had to organise a staggered entry to college on both days. Students are required to complete their voluntary lateral flow tests before attending classes and the planning of schedules is currently being finalised.
Appointments will be sent out to students using Google Chat messaging this week. Year 13 students due to return on Monday 8th March, should receive their allocated appointment time for Monday by Wednesday afternoon. Year 12 students should receive their individual appointment times by Thursday afternoon for testing that will take place on their return on Tuesday 9th March.
The consequence of this staggered start for Year 13 on Monday and Year 12 students on Tuesday, is that teaching and learning is going to be disrupted, with some students not invited on site until early afternoon. The Faculty leaders are planning project based work set in Google classroom to accommodate learning activities that can be accessed by students either waiting at home or once in college. Once a student has completed their LFT and has a negative result, they will be able to continue attending lessons for the remainder of the day. The teacher will be present in lessons, to welcome students back, but the lesson will not be formally delivered on these days so that students do not feel disadvantaged if they arrive later in the day.
Part of the delivery in the Life skills tutorial this Wednesday afternoon will be focused on ensuring all students have registered on the NHS app and watching a walkthrough video of how the testing occurs at college, to make students aware of the process and to allow the opportunity to ask questions.
If any student is showing symptoms of COVID 19 on the day of the test next week, they should not attend and you should book a PCR test and the household should self isolate. Please let us know as soon as possible if this is the case, as we will continue to track student absences from COVID.
If a student has tested positive for COVID 19 in the last 90 days, it is possible they could produce a positive result on the LFT test. The advice is that any student who is within 90 days of a positive result should not carry out a LFT test until 90 days have expired. We are happy to accommodate tests for students in this position but please note: if the result is positive then isolation guidelines must be followed.
Nicky Miller or Rebecca Anderson will be making contact with a small group of students to offer a lateral flow test on Friday. Parents / Carers and students will be contacted individually if this is the case.
The second and third lateral flow tests will be scheduled in college lesson time up until the 16th March. It is anticipated there will be less disruption to lessons and students will be able to complete their tests more efficiently. We are planning to test Year 13 again on Thursday 11th and Monday 15th March. Year 12 will have their additional tests on Friday 12th and Tuesday 16th March. On these days, students will come to college for their normal timetabled lessons.
Details about home testing kits will be shared with parents/ carers and students next week.
Finally, if there are any changes to contact details, please can you inform the office immediately. It is really important that we can get hold of parents if we need to contact you urgently if a student has a positive test or they become unwell on site.
We are delighted to be planning the safe return of all students and staff to college from the 8th March. Staff have been briefed and are excited to welcome students back and to begin a really important process of socialisation again for everyone, placing wellbeing at the heart of everything we do. The learning will come naturally after that. I would like to reiterate the messages sent by Sarah Busby in our MLP Newsletter earlier this week. We are not going to worry about gaps in learning. There will be some gaps and misconceptions and not all students will have coped with the demands of the work during lockdown but these things can be overcome in time. S6C staff are passionate about supporting every student to build strong relationships and connections again, and find a positive working rhythm that all young people will feel is manageable and effective.
Year 13 students will return to college on Monday 8th March.
Year 12 students will return to college on Tuesday 9th March.
Students will be contacted individually next week to confirm when they are scheduled for their first voluntary lateral flow test, but students should expect to arrive at college for their normal timetabled lessons on either the Monday or Tuesday.
Students became very accustomed to the safety procedures we have in the building and these will continue on our return. Our processes continue to be:
On arrival to the building, including on the forecourt, students will be required to wear a face mask. They should use hand sanitiser on entry.
The one way system around the building is to be respected and used at all times by all members of the community. Signage has been refreshed for clarity.
Hand sanitisers are on each floor of the building to be used and sani wipes are in classrooms for students to clean their hands. Hands should be washed before entering a classroom. Students are reminded of the combined importance of hands, face and space.
The lift is only to be used by members of the S6C community that have a medical reason. A lift pass can be agreed by Nicky Miller with confirmation from parents/carers where appropriate.
Year group bubbles still apply and the allocated zones for Year 12 and 13 are still signposted for breakout spaces and the cafe area. For this term, we have swapped the lower ground floor cafe area to be year 13 break out space and the ground floor for year 12. All other spaces remain the same.
Our important message that we will be reinforcing is that we expect all of our community to be ‘socially distanced at all times where possible’.
The government has made an exception to the ongoing strict lockdown so that young people can access the very clear benefits of onsite education as we enter phase 1 of moving out of lockdown. Students need to be vigilant and cautious even when they may have a negative lateral flow test – it is an indicator that you are unlikely to have COVID, but the risk is not removed.
Wearing of face masks
As a Trust we have made the collective decision that we are following Government guidelines that schools and colleges are strongly recommended to wear face masks as at all times on site.
This recommendation will remain in place at S6C until further notice and we are anticipating that we will review this at the end of Term 4 at Easter.
This means that students will be expected to wear a mask at all times in the building. The only exceptions are :
physical exercise during sports lessons or actively exercising in the MUGA at break or lunchtimes
when students are eating or drinking
If a student is able to work in the study centre where desks are 2 metres apart, a small office space for individual study,, or doing self directed study in an empty classroom where there is no other student within 2 metres of them. Study space lists are posted around the building.
Nicky Miller can agree to a personal exemption based on an individual’s medical needs with confirmation from parents/carers where appropriate.
It is important that all students have a spare mask in their bags in case their mask becomes soiled or damp during the day. They should have individual, sealable plastic bags for safe storage of masks when not in use.
Staff will continue to wear face masks in all communal areas and where they cannot maintain physical distancing of 2 metres from students or colleagues in offices or classrooms. Where staff can maintain a 2 metre distance in a classroom to teach, they will be able to teach with their mask removed. Any movement in the classroom will require the teacher to keep a mask on and they are reminded to socially distance.
Adjustments to the college day
The wearing of masks for a prolonged period of time is not going to be easy for any member of our community. We all know the discomfort it can create, but we also know that this is a short term expectation that increases our safety. With that in mind, for the remainder of the term until the Easter break, the college day will be adjusted to allow for more opportunities for students and staff to go outside, get fresh air and remove their masks. We will be actively encouraging students and staff to do so for their wellbeing.
The college day therefore for Term 4 will be scheduled as:
9.00 – 10.15
10.45 – 12.00
1.00 – 2.15
2.45 – 4.00
Morning and afternoon break times have been extended to 30 minutes, allowing sufficient time to leave the building and be punctual again for the next lesson. Lunchtime has been extended to an hour and we will be actively encouraging our community to take fresh air and exercise. Staff may set Spring wellbeing activities on some days for students to participate in if they wish.
Students are reminded that once they have left the college premises – strict national lockdown rules apply, which, at the moment, mean that they can meet with one other person for exercise and recreation outdoors.
Please can you contact firstname.lastname@example.org if your child has a medical exemption or may have difficulties with wearing a mask all day. If you feel that your child might have difficulty learning if the teacher is wearing a mask please also let us know.
Students should be rigorous about hands, face and space when travelling, in order to protect themselves and others.
Registration for lateral flow testing
The Government is actively encouraging all students to participate in the voluntary lateral flow tests, which can help identify cases of asymptomatic covid. Students that have attended the Hub weekly have completed these with ease and no discomfort. Students will be required to undertake three lateral flow Covid tests on their return to college, 3 – 5 days apart. After these tests have been completed, students will then be provided with test kits to complete at home. In order for us to process these, we need to ensure that students are registered on the testing system.
It would be really helpful for ALL students to register for their lateral flow testing before arriving on site for their first day back.
Add in email address (students need to be able to access this to confirm their email address by responding to an email sent immediately)
Create a password and confirm
Enter their mobile number (students will need to submit the authentication code sent to them)
You should then see ‘Welcome to Your Test and Trace Account’
Make sure you know the password you have set up, you will need it to register your first test.
Do not go any further until you attend your first test.
If you experience any problems with registration, don’t worry, Staff will be assigned to help with any issues with registering when you attend your first test.
As I am sure you will appreciate, the required testing is a massive undertaking for the college, so we would appreciate it if students could make every effort to attend their designated slot. These slots will be communicated to students in the next week.
We really look forward to all students returning back on site and getting back to more normal patterns of working and interacting again.
The days are getting longer and the weather a little warmer and hope is in the air of enjoying our summer holidays this year.
Lessons have resumed online as normal this week, after what I hope has been a restful half term for you and your families. Year 13 students have been hard at work doing their subject mocks remotely.
Many students may be feeling anxious at this time due to government announcements about the impending return to college life and the media frenzy that has followed. Let me assure you, we are looking at all the guidance and formulating a plan to ensure the safe return of students to the S6C campus.
We will also be analysing the formal reports from OFQUAL and the Department of Education that have been released regarding how Teacher Accessed Grades (TAGs) will work in the summer. The role of a teacher is to inspire, motivate, encourage and educate learners and to ensure progression to the next stage of a young person’s career and while TAGs are not the norm for teachers; assessment and fair grades are part of everyday life and our teachers are well equipped to carry out any requirements.
We will write to you with further information about how S6C will proceed later in the year. For now, please do not worry about stories or scaremongering in the press.
Craig Assistant Principal
Pastoral Update – Rebecca Anderson, Pastoral Lead
We are aware that the easing of lockdown to allow for onsite education will be received in different ways – some students, and their families, will be relieved, others anxious, some with mixed feelings. We are here to make sure this transition is as safe and as smooth as possible for all, but we are also here to support individuals. Please get in touch with us if you have any questions or concerns – we can listen, advise, encourage, and work with students to make sure they are able to access a full education in a safe and settled way. We are aware from the press, and from our S6C students, that this second lockdown has been very hard for some young people, with a number struggling with anxiety, low mood, bereavement, disrupted sleep and other issues, including a rise in self harm, eating issues, and unhelpful coping strategies. We can offer self help resources in all these areas, with support sessions from the pastoral lead, and we can refer to our qualified counselling team, and external agencies as needed. Tutors are on hand to listen and support. We want our students, and their families, to feel fully cared for at this time and will do all we can to help.
Life Skills Programme
Having covered a number of covid related topics in recent weeks – online safety, managing lockdown, physical/emotional/mental wellbeing, and bereavement – and having previously celebrated Black History month, LGBTQ+ History month, British Values, and the wealth of documentaries and online resources available to us as cultural capital – as well as initial study skills advice and the science behind how we learn – this week’s resources aim to develop personal skills moving forwards. Students have all been asked to cook a meal during the week, using the tips and recipes for Cooking On A Budget. We have shared recipes for £1 meals, and for Eat for £1 A Day, for meals made in mugs, batch cooked dinners to freeze (or for large families), an adaptable curry and chilli, and lots of hints and tips for eating well at low cost. Do ask them to share the recipes and tips with you – and get them cooking! Here is just one of the links we shared: https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/budget
Humanities Faculty Update – Sally Tye, Faculty Lead for Humanities
This week the Humanities Faculty has been delighted to welcome Taisha Picking, a trainee teacher currently working at the Trafalgar School. She has been observing lessons from RS, History, Business, English and Film and will finish the week by teaching a year 12 RS lesson on religious experience and Emmanual Kant’s central argument ‘that the finite cannot experience the infinite!’
S6C is all about learning and that includes teachers as much as students.
STEM Faculty Update – Kirsty White, Faculty Lead for STEM
As part of LGBT history month, Psychology students talked about the importance of acceptance, tolerance and rule of law as part of our Fundamental British Values and examined both the positive and negative impacts that psychology has had on the LGBTQ+ community and associated views and legislation. Students have explored this as part of their course, such as looking at the changing view of homosexuality as a mental illness in Psychopathology (in Year 12) and how psychological theories like classical conditioning have been used in harmful ways to create ‘conversion therapy’ in Issues and Debates (in Year 13). This activity enabled students to go beyond this and allowed students to produce a huge range of content; the mental effects of coming out, the mental effects of homophobia, the removal of homosexuality from mental health diagnostic manuals, the work of Evelyn Hooker, the neuroscience of LGBT, animal studies of homosexuality, psychological ‘therapies’ and much more. During lessons, students presented their findings to each other, demonstrating excellent communication and employability skills.
Careers – Rosie Roberts, Careers Lead
We are actively encouraging our students to use Careerpilot to support their Career Education and help them become managers of their own careers. Careerpilot have a dedicated Parent Zone where you can watch videos and find all you need to on your young person’s Career choices. You can also take-a-look around the Careerpilot website and encourage your young person to take part in the many free to use activities. We encourage parents to explore Careerpilot and the other websites listed above to look at all post-18 options and see up to date labour market information on career options. You can read more about what labour market information is on the careers page of our website https://www.salisbury6c.ac.uk/students/careers/ If you would like any further advice directly, please contact email@example.com
It has been an extraordinary term and one that none of us are ever likely to forget. The uncertainty of remaining closed and not having face to face teaching and contact has meant that staff have taken new steps into the unknown and tried with great enthusiasm and nerves in creating more collaboration with our students in lessons. We know from our drop ins to live lessons this term, that students are really embracing the opportunity to share their knowledge and understanding with others, and are enjoying the software they are using, like breakout rooms in Google Meet allowing them to work together. Has it all run smoothly? No, but students have supported staff and remained well humoured when at times reminding us to turn our microphone back on, or waited whilst our pets stop barking or someone has arrived with a delivery at our door. Never would we have imagined that education would have looked like this.
Remaining connected is important to us – it reflects the ethos of our community of ‘togetherness’ and I am truly grateful for everyone’s commitment which extends to our wonderful parental community. Thank you for your support in keeping our community safe and connected.
Staff and students are tired, but I hope that everyone can get the well deserved rest needed over the February half term. I will write to parents and students on our return as the Government announces their decisions around the reopening of college and details about the Teacher Assessments for the summer term.
With very best wishes,
Pastoral Support – Rebecca Anderson, Pastoral Lead
Pastoral and Safeguarding Support over Half Term. We would like to wish everyone a safe and happy half term break. Year 13s especially may have some study to do but we would also like everyone to be taking time for exercise, family, relaxation and lockdown-friendly activities. We have shared some ideas for viewing, creating and engaging with interests, for students who may be at a loose end. Students are reminded to stay safe online, and to be kind to themselves, those around them, and each other.
A reminder that although the site is closed, and our Learning Hub will not be running during the break, information on Wellbeing – physical, emotional, and mental, can be accessed on the Information Classroom by all students; these resources include contact numbers for support lines and messaging, both in crisis or just in need of some contact – support can be accessed 24/7 using these services. Anyone can contact the specially trained safeguarding team with a concern about an S6C student, and these emails are checked even when the site is closed. Please do email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any concerns about the wellbeing or safety of a young person.
We are aware that members of our S6C community have lost loved ones in recent times, due to covid or other illness, and we offer our sympathy and best wishes. This week we shared practical resources for times of bereavement, or for supporting others through grief, and encouraged all students to take a look. This presentation is available here.
It contains resources for people of all ages and walks of life and may be of some help to our wider S6C community.
LGBTQ+ History Month
S6C are proud to support LGBTQ+ history month and have shared some resources with students to help educate and celebrate.
Take a look at this history teacher explaining the importance of awareness months for LGBTQ+ and BAME history (he suggests that under 18s should ask for parental permission) https://youtu.be/QS0Ny1wf_74 And here is the link to the LGBTQ+ History Month 2021 website with links to resources for students, parents and community. https://lgbtplushistorymonth.co.uk/
Year 12 Business – Catherine Pennington, Teacher of Business
Year 12 Business students have been learning about Marketing, sustainability and online shopping. A fun task this week was to style Catherine Pennington for a cold weather day, for less than £100, online shopping only, recycled if possible. `The class voted on the best outfit. Catherine bought her favourite outfit put together by Jess Billington. Catherine would like to send a thank you to Jess and confirms she will wear the outfit on the return to college.
£98.44 Hat, scarf, gloves, boots, coat, jumper and trousers.
Psychology – Kirsty White, Faculty Lead for STEM
In Psychology, we have been exploring Issues and Debates and how they relate to the wider world. Year 13s recently watched ‘Three Identical Strangers’. Louise Pharo, who is going to University to study Psychology next year, summarises how we used it in class. “Recently in psychology we looked at the case of ‘Three Identical Strangers’, which is something you may have seen or heard about from the media (if you haven’t I’d definitely recommend the documentary as it’s so interesting!). They were identical triplets, separated at birth when they were adopted and raised by different families in different cities. We discussed it in class and linked it to the nature-nurture debate, looking at how different the twins were and how much of an influence our environment and nurturing has on our behaviour or whether it is controlled more by our biology and genetics. It was amazing being able to see and apply what we were studying to the outside world and to real life. Applying psychology to the real world is good because wherever there are people you’ll be able to see what you’re studying, perhaps even in your own lives. This not only makes the subject all the more interesting and makes you more eager to learn, but also gives a greater understanding on something as complex as the human mind and why we behave and in the ways we do, which is fascinating.”
Baking club – Dr Sally Tye, Faculty Lead for Humanities
In the baking club this week we made Cherry Bakewell Cupcakes – something creative to relax our minds and keep our loved ones happy with everyone working from home. With the club running online, we actively encourage more students to take part with Sally’s guidance to create some family favourites.
Salisbury Journal Article – Richard Eno, Faculty Lead for Creative Faculty
If you haven’t had the opportunity to read this article, Rich Eno was interviewed by the Salisbury Journal about S6C’s online provision and adapting to lockdown.
I hope that all families have had a good week and are enjoying the lighter nights as we say goodbye to January. Our opportunity to exercise daily has also allowed us to see some wonderful sunrises and sunsets and the early signs of spring as many plants are already blooming in our gardens and local parks. There Is much to hope for in the weeks to come, as the national vaccination programme has marked the significant milestone of vaccinating more than 10 million people. With many of our most vulnerable in society becoming protected with their first vaccination, there is great expectation that society will begin to return to something that resembles a more normal pattern by early March.
The Government is still anticipating that schools and colleges will begin to reopen in England from 8th March, and we are awaiting guidance that is likely to come in the next few weeks. Until that point we will continue to support, challenge and guide all students in their remote learning, pastoral care and careers guidance.
We are awaiting the decisions of the consultations about the awarding of GCSE, A Level and Vocational and Technical qualifications. The clarification and decisions about how teacher grades will be calculated is likely to be a number of weeks away yet, but I would like to reassure all students, parents and carers that staff are ensuring that we are tracking student progress diligently and are working towards the preparation of the summer ‘Tests’ that students will sit. We are confident that students are working hard and staff are making good progress in delivering the curriculum content.
Wishing you all a restful weekend. I hope the updates provide interesting information to parents and carers and allow us to celebrate some great opportunities occurring in the curriculum.
Online Working – Rebecca Anderson, Pastoral Lead
We have reminded students of our Guidelines and Expectations for Safe and Effective Online Learning at S6C. By using the college systems to collaborate together, we know students remain in a safe environment – please do take a look. Guidelines and Expectations for Online Learning at S6C
In Life Skills this week we encouraged everyone to settle in for the afternoon and watch one of our recommended documentaries – a wide range of platforms and subjects, recommended by staff, so everyone should have been able to find something. This is part of our shared cultural capital – resources that help us understand and engage with the world around us – which should be an element of any education.
Mental Health Awareness
We are very pleased to be able to share a selection of information leaflets provided by the new early intervention Mental Health Support Team (MHST). S6C is part of a trial for this new scheme and we are very glad to be able to offer our students this 1:1 support and additional advice. Please get in touch with any pastoral concerns and we will offer support via tutors, pastoral lead, our highly trained independent counsellors, or external agencies. Do take a look at their top tips for parents navigating lockdown and for getting good sleep.
Humanities Faculty Update – Sally Tye, Head of Humanities Faculty
As part of our Speaker Programme throughout the college year which bring ‘real life’ experience’ to the classroom for our A Level and BTEC Business students, we were joined by Beth Harris, a Bournemouth University Student Ambassador, studying a BA(Hons) in Marketing Communication. Beth led a workshop on Wednesday discussing careers in marketing and university life. She took us through the key principles of marketing, discussed the importance of the creative element of business, outlined her course and then gave the students a view of the real ‘nitty, gritty’ of university life. A real ‘force of boundless energy’, she made us think about the decisions that need to be made over the next 18 months. Beth was clear about the importance of not being afraid to take a risk, change your mind and gave us advice on making the best of university, even during a pandemic!
Year 13 Business students joined a live Revision Blast on Tuesday with over 250 other business students around the country at a Tutor2U event. The chat was fast and furious, students responding to questions on YouTube. Our students will also be able to use this as a revision resource when they watch back. Louis Saunders, year 12 told us that it was great fun because it was LIVE.
As part of children’s mental health week, Year 12 RS students put down their pens for an hour this week to do some ‘real’ philosophy. We took advantage of the online experience, to sit in a comfy chair with a coffee, tea or hot chocolate and discuss an extract on the ‘Mind’ from an amazing little book called ‘Think’ by Simon Blackburn. This is one of the recommended reading choices from Oxford University to prepare for philosophy interviews. Our students were incredible, we had a whole hour of amazing thoughts and insights with hardly any teacher input. I have already noticed such a difference in this week’s essays!
ARTiculation – Laurence Rushby, Teacher of Art
Laurence Rusby has been working hard with her students this week on various projects, in particular ARTiculation which is explained further here: ARTiculation Workshop Evidence
It’s National Apprenticeships Week next week so lots of materials will be shared on the Google Information Classroom for students to engage with in their independent study period. Year 13s who are interested in securing an apprenticeship should regularly check the Information Classroom for apprenticeship vacancies and sign up for alerts from the Find an Apprenticeship website (https://www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship) as some employers are recruiting now for summer/September start dates. All Year 12s should also take some time to look at the Apprenticeships material being shared in the Information Classroom from 8th – 14th February.
There are two options for students interested in securing an apprenticeship: 1) complete college courses in year 13 and then find an intermediate apprenticeship by regularly looking on https://www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship and work up from there 2) use the coming weeks to look for an advanced or higher apprenticeship using the apprenticeship fair and opportunities shared with students on the Information Classroom during National Apprenticeship Week.
I would like to thank all our Parents / Carers and students for their participation in last week’s surveys. We have reflected on your comments and we hope that you have found us responsive in addressing any points that you may have raised that will ensure that the learning experience is good for your son / daughter.
Here is an overview of the results of the survey: 99% of parents are happy with communication being clear about how remote learning is accessed 95% of parents are happy that Personal Wellbeing support has been accessible when needed or available if required 99% of students are either fully engaged (83%) or partially engaged (16%) 89% of parents believe teaching has been excellent
Although we are very pleased with how most of the lessons are being delivered and engaged in, we all know there is no substitute for face to face lessons. This along with another period of isolation at home is having an impact on student wellbeing – including creating a lot of anxiety for some. The pastoral team will have been in touch to help identify further support we can offer for those that have reached out to let us know.
Unsurprisingly, families are facing greater pressure on their broadband as more families are now working at home. The Government IT support schemes have now extended to college students and we have been able to distribute SIM cards to students to help improve their access.
We now know that we will not return until March 8th at the earliest, and although that is disappointing, we want every family and every student to know we are here to support in any way we can. The college remains open to receive emails and telephone calls to maintain contact and to be able to stay in touch if you need us. No issue is too small, so please let us know if you think we can do anything else to help.
Wishing you all a restful weekend,
Pastoral Updates – Rebecca Anderson
I was really pleased that this week I was messaged with a number of questions from students, which had actually already been answered in the previous weeks’ Life Skills sessions on Wellbeing and on Next Steps – this shows that our Life Skills programme is covering information that students need and want. It does also show that not all students are engaging with the material – so tutors are working hard to encourage all students to stay connected online. We are making some small changes to our messaging, to help students follow the stream in the Information Classroom. It is really important that students have their notifications on – we only post high quality, relevant material – they should make a habit of scrolling back every Monday to check they haven’t missed anything. No one ever regrets being really well informed.
All S6C lessons are live, but Life Skills material is posted every Wednesday, for both year groups to look at, usually with a small task so they have to get their head around it and we can follow up. This week we are running a live tutor session so students can catch up in virtual breakout rooms and chat about how their lockdown is going. We are suggesting they share tips for relaxation and unwinding – books, films, tv, games, apps, free courses and activities, exercise programmes etc – and that they look at this excellent guide for young people about managing lockdown. Some will be flying and others really struggling – or experiencing a bit of both – as will their families, along with staff, and the rest of our communities. This resource contains some excellent advice for lots of different possible feelings about lockdown – we are all in this together so do take a look yourselves and pass the link on to anyone that may find it helpful. https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/for-children-and-young-people/coronavirus/managing-feelings-about-changes-to-lockdown/
As ever, if students are struggling, or are concerned about a friend, they should get in touch with their tutor or myself, as the pastoral lead. We can offer support for emotional, mental and physical wellbeing, financial concerns, help with managing stress/identity/emotions/confidence, study skills support, eating, sleep, drugs & alcohol, consent, online safety – all sorts of things – either through 1:1 chats, resource sharing, self help sessions, or referrals to our amazing counsellors, the early intervention mental health team, Camhs, or a variety of specialist services. It’s good to talk.
Psychology students were invited to attend an optional day-long seminar on ‘ – Kirsty White, Faculty Lead for STEM
Psychology students were invited to attend an optional day-long seminar on ‘Your Future in Psychology’, hosted by the British Psychological Society (BPS). The day included webinars from specialists in numerous fields in Psychology. A number of Year 12 and Year 13 students attended and found the day to be exciting and insightful. Year 13 student Hannah Coleman, who has applied to study Psychology at university, has written the following review: After attending the BPS ‘Your Future in Psychology’ webinar, I am genuinely inspired by the passion of the members of the BPS. As I am studying A level Psychology, and planning to go to University to study a degree in Psychology, I thought after Kirsty mentioned this event, it would be a good idea to attend, and it certainly did not disappoint! The day involved several different talks from experts in the field of Psychology, as well as a talk about transitioning to degree level and a Q&A session at the end of the day. Each of the speakers gave insightful talks about topics they are involved in, such as Dr Robert A. Nash’s talk about why false memories stick around, linking nicely with the topic of Memory in Paper 1. Professor Matt Field spoke about addiction, which I am looking forward to studying later in upper sixth, as well as Professor Veena Kumari’s talk about Schizophrenia, and myths that schizophrenics are aggressive, but in fact, much of their behaviour is as a result of feeling threatened. Dr Nikhil Sengupta spoke about large scale panel studies of the Psychology of inequality, how we perceive our communities to be equal, and how this has an effect on our self esteem. Overall, the event gave me some great insight into Psychology at a degree level, and I cannot wait to be part of the BPS community! I would definitely recommend this event to those of you who are interested in Psychology post college, a really interesting and thought provoking event, likely to get you even more excited about studying Psychology!
Students continue to collaborate with peers and teachers – Rich Eno, Faculty Lead for Creative
Staff have been producing many interactive and engaging lessons during the current lockdown. Our Art and Photography teacher, Laurence Rushby, has produced some exciting lessons where students are busy making a variety of art based pieces whilst at home. In addition, we’ve all been using a wide range of Google Education apps to ensure our lessons are engaging. For example, many of our staff use a Google Jamboard where students share ideas in a visual manner. The larger image of the Jamboard is a dialogue of feedback of what students have completed in self directed study since their last lesson.
BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Business – Steve Price – Teacher of Business and Sally Tye Humanities Faculty Lead
S6C began delivering the newly reformed BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in September 2019. Equivalent of 3 A Levels, it is often seen as a route to apprenticeship and employment. However Thirteen of the cohort of fifteen have made applications for University places, all have offers, one of them unconditional. Amongst them we have three students with offers from Cardiff and Exeter, Russell Group Universities. All have offers from universities with strong reputations for business, including Portsmouth, Royal Holloway, UWE, Winchester and Bournemouth.
The BTEC Business Level 3 Extended Diploma has offered our students a new pathway and opportunity to achieve, whether at college or learning through the medium of ‘live’ online lessons. As we see the arguments of the impact of the Covid 19 pandemic on what is defined as ‘a lost generation’ played out in the national media, we would argue that S6C students are special. Despite the significant challenge and disruption the education system and S6C have faced, as with all our students, the Year 13 BTEC cohort have shown real resilience, desire and drive to achieve. We are immensely proud of their efforts, aspirations and quality of work achieved so far and we feel it is fitting to highlight to our community how well they are doing.
Careers Update – Rosie Roberts – Student Liaison and Publicity Officer
Local apprenticeship vacancies that Year 13 students may be interested in are being uploaded in the Google Information Classroom. Go to the Classwork tab at the top of the page > Careers > Apprenticeships Vacancies.
New Virtual Work Experience opportunities have been added in the Google Information Classroom in Classwork > Careers > Work Experience.
There are a range of live online careers talks on offer every week and links to these are being posted every Monday in the Google Information Classroom message stream.
We would like to get in touch with S6C alumni to be able to share their career journeys since leaving S6C with our current students. If you know someone who studied at S6C who would like to update us on what they’re doing now please ask them to email Rosie: email@example.com This month we are particularly looking for Alumni who have completed or who are completing apprenticeships ahead of Apprenticeship week 8-14 February 2021 and also female Alumni who are studying or employed in a Science area or a STEM related field ahead of International Day of Women and Girls in Science on 11 February 2021.