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Partial Re-Opening Training Video

Please see a video message from Mr Henshall here – https://vimeo.com/428118563

Please click the link below to watch our Training Video ready for the partial re-opening of school next week – https://vimeo.com/428029988

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Transition Day

Transition Day for students moving from Year 6 into Year 7 secondary school was originally set for Thursday 9th July. This is a Hertfordshire wide ‘moving up’ day. Secondary schools fully appreciate the value of this time to acquaint new students with their new school, meet form teachers, see their form rooms etc. However, under the current circumstances it looks like these plans may need adjusting. We have asked Hertfordshire for their guidance as to when and how such a transition day/days might occur alongside our current provision for Year 10 and 12 students, vulnerable and key worker children; we await their response.

It is our firm intention to ensure that transition from junior to secondary school is as smooth and stress free as possible. There are numerous ways to achieve this if a physical transition is not possible and arrangements will be put in place once we have greater clarity. We anticipate that the situation will become clearer before the end of June and we intend to communicate directly with parents/carers of our new joiners at that point.

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Lockdown Literature

During lockdown, we have been so impressed with the creative writing produced by our students. Here is a collection of some that we really want to share with the wider school community. We think you’ll very much enjoy reading these excellent pieces!
Lou Martin
Literacy and Scholars Coordinator
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100K in May Certificate

Thank you to everyone who has got involved with the 100k in May challenge, it has been great to hear of so many families getting involved. For some this challenge has tested individual’s determination and perseverance and for others it has been helping with physical and mental health, whilst raising money for charity.

For those of you that have persevered with the challenge I hope you are closing in on the 100Km target. Congratulations to those who have completed the 100K in May with time to spare. But don’t stop there… why not see how far you can go in the month of May.

I think it is important that your achievements are recognised and especially the achievements of our younger family members. As we near the end of the challenge, please feel free to download and print the 100k in May Certificate which you can then present to your families and have your own achievement celebration.

If you would like to make a donation please visit our justgiving page:

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rps100kinmay

Thank you again for all your support

Stay safe

Mr Rowlands

Head of Frank House

100k in may certificate

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Remote House Competitions

Dear students,

We truly hope that you are settling into the routines of working at home. We know that many of you are missing the ebb and flow of the school, including the many House activities that help to bring us all together as a wonderful community. We would like to continue the Roundwood ethos, despite current circumstances, to enable opportunities for collaboration, communication and challenge among the students. We are therefore introducing a series of House competitions that you can take part in, should you wish. Many subjects and areas of the school have come together (virtually) to produce the list of competitions available. The full list of opportunities can be found in the attached document. We would like to reiterate that you can opt into as many or few challenges as they wish.

House competitions:

The SLG will be communicating the different competitions each week. House Captains and School Captains will be sharing the information and promoting each competition within their Houses on social media and through House Leaders. Every participant will gain House Points for their House, along with the opportunity of winning competition prizes! There are plenty of different activities and competitions to choose from including: a 30-day creative challenge, #create30; 100k in May raising money for charity; as well as various scientific, humanities and technology challenges. Please look at the list and deadlines to see whether there’s something you think you would like to take part in.

How to take part?

Details of the competition can be found in the attached document, as well as on the website. We have set up a Google Classroom for you to upload your work – the links are included in the document and will be shared weekly as reminders. If you are having difficulty uploading, you can email housecompetitions@roundwoodpark.co.uk and we will include their submission into the relevant competition. You must include your NAME, FORM and COMPETITION on any work you upload or submit.

Celebration evening

When we are together again, we will have a presentation evening where the submissions, winners and competitor’s work will be celebrated. It will be a fabulous evening, demonstrating how students’ creativity and perseverance prevails, despite adversity and tricky circumstances.

Should you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact us, we would be pleased to help.

You can find more information by Clicking Here

Kindest regards,

Mrs Gallagher, Mrs Tattersall, Mr Pettengell and the Roundwood Park SL

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Frank 100k in May Challenge

As an altruistic school, Roundwood Park raises lots of money for charity and this year is no different. We would like to continue this ethos, despite current circumstances and ask for you and all families to get involved in our 100K in May Challenge and raise money for charities who are supporting individuals struggling in the current national crisis [please read the accompanying presentation]. 

Whilst it is most important to stay safe and continue to practice our social distancing, it is also important that we look after our physical and mental health. The government suggests we exercise daily and this is what I am encouraging you all to do. We would like to invite you to participate in this massive, but very achievable, challenge. The more the merrier, students parents, carers, staff and even pets. For some of you this could be a great achievement developing self-discipline and perseverance. For others it could be an opportunity to continue with or revisit good exercise habits.

A few years ago I attempted to run 100k in the month of May as a personal challenge; then it occurred to me this could be something we could do as a community.

We would like you to walk or run 100km during the month of May, it is a long way but broken down into smaller more manageable chunks it is achievable for all (3.24km a day). If you have been inspired by Captain Tom and want to set yourself a real challenge, this is your chance to do something amazing to help people in need.

As a school we have decided that the money raised for this event will not go to our school charities, but to the charities being supported by ‘The Big Night In’ so that we can support the current crisis.

This is because the Money raised through the Big Night In will be split between Comic relief and Children in Need and will go on to support a variety of charities and projects, already established in the UK. This means that people who need this emergency funding most now because of the Covid-19 pandemic, will receive it quickly. Also the government has pledged to match pound for pound donations to the Big Night In. This match funding comprises a minimum donation of £20m to National Emergencies Trust.

So if you want to get involved, get out, get moving and share this link to our Justgiving page. If you are not going to take part in the challenge please make a donation to get behind and support those who are! 

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rps100kinmay

Stay safe; Stay healthy; Help others – Its a win win for everybody!

All the best 

Mr Rowlands

Head of Frank House & Achievement Mentor

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Update – Monday 20 April 2020

I hope that you had a good Easter holiday and managed to have a rest and enjoy the weather, if only in your own gardens.

As we start the new term, we are switching to a new timetable for Key Stage 3.  I sent this to you before the holidays but a copy is attached.  At KS3 we will be using a combination of resources set by teachers as well as new resources which are appearing specifically for online learning nationally.  We will make this clear to the students via Show my Homework/Google Classroom.

For Year 10 and 12 we are planning to keep up the work as before.  We understand that it is difficult for students to complete learning at home to the same level as in a classroom with a teacher and therefore we have issued new guidance to our teaching staff which should help with this going forward.

For Year 11, there were some work erroneously set on Show my Homework this morning.  I would like to extend my apologies for any confusion caused but want to make it clear that students do not need to complete this work.  Art students have been asked to submit photographs of the work that was done before the school closed. They should look at the Show my Homework message from Miss Durdey and follow the instructions.  Year 11 will be set pre-A Level work from 4 May onwards which is the time that their exams were due to start.  We will tell you more about this soon.

Year 11 and 13 parents will have many questions about the grading system being used by schools.  I attach a Frequently Asked Questions document prepared by Mrs Barter, our Deputy Headteacher, which should help.

Thank you to parents of all year groups for all you are doing during this difficult time.

Kind regards

Alan Henshall

Headteacher

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Update on School Trips

We have been in constant contact with our suppliers and insurers regarding the school trips that we had planned for this academic year. It is looking extremely unlikely that any of the trips will run and we are in the process of cancelling the arrangements and submitting insurance claims.

Once we have received assurance from our insurers and suppliers that they will be issuing refunds, we will begin to drip feed the refunds back to parents. I appreciate that these are financially testing times for some of you and we are doing our utmost to get your money back as soon as possible.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your patience and understanding in these difficult times.  We will be in touch when we have further information relating to refunds.

If you have any questions relating to this email please contact Cara Manton, Trips Co-ordinator on c.manton@roundwoodpark.co.uk or Paul Seymour, Director of Operations on p.seymour@roundwoodpark.co.uk.

Kind regards

Alan Henshall

Headteacher

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Coronavirus Update – Monday 30th March 2020

What a week that was! I hope that you are all still managing to smile through the first week of our new home study nation! Here at Henshall Towers, establishing a routine worked well for a time and then degenerated into “they’re setting me too much work” or “they’re not setting me enough!” from my two teenagers, in equal measure. On the plus side, the one piece of exercise per day means that we have got the fittest nine-year-old Labrador in Bedfordshire!

At the risk of patronising our savvy and well-educated parents, I wanted to give you a few things to bear in mind about the work we are setting and how to complete it.

Well-being is more important than anything else. If students are getting stressed about it despite their perseverance, then they should have a break or go onto something else, or both. The teacher is always there to email too, if all else fails. In a classroom, teachers break activities down into chunks and much of the lesson develops from what they can, or indeed can’t, understand. This is very hard to do when setting work online. Therefore, doing the above will help.

Try to keep a routine if you can. This could be done by beginning each day with a family meeting about what they will be working on that day or by supervising the first half hour to get them started, then leaving them to work through it. It could also be done by doing the physical workout on TV first (PE With Joe, The Body Coach) https://www.youtube.com/user/thebodycoach1 or indeed following the example set by our PE department on Twitter @RPS PE then letting them get on with their studying afterwards. It is having a routine that matters most, rather than what that routine is.

Reading is relaxing, it is educational and it allows students to pursue their own interests. I would advise them to read for an hour a day, if this is at all possible. Audible have made lots of online books available free during the lockdown. It is worth checking this out: https://stories.audible.com/start-listen

At RPS, we as teachers are learning about this new world too. Most feedback from week one seemed to indicate that we are setting a bit too much work due to the high expectations we have of our students. Whilst these high expectations remain, I have asked colleagues to set somewhat less work this week.

After Easter, we will move to a more medium-term plan. This will include more teaching input within it, via Google Classroom, as well as sometimes using recorded teaching of our voices or use of video technology. We are currently experimenting with and researching many of these options. You will see a shift in the style of work set after the holidays which will not only be mindful of the amount set, but will also see a greater prioritising of Year 10 and 12, who need to keep the momentum going for their GCSE and A Level courses respectively.

At the moment, we are asking Year 11 and 13 to finish their courses and practise the skills they need for the end of their key stages. Once this has been completed, we will be looking to set Year 11 work which is more appropriate for preparing for the next phase of their education.

We are mindful of how stressful this time can be for both students and parents. The link below should help with signposting help that is out there, as well as good advice. We will also be sending the student link to them via Show My Homework.

https://www.justtalkherts.org/news/looking-after-your-mental-health-during-coronavirus.aspx

Finally, I would like to pay tribute to all our magnificent parents who work in the NHS. We are so grateful to you for all you are doing for our loved ones and will be doing in the weeks ahead. I for one will be applauding every Thursday evening. To help in our own small way, we have donated a lot of our science masks and goggles to the NHS and we have made our minibuses available to NHS volunteers to deliver vital supplies.

We will get through this crisis together. Have a lovely Easter and I’ll contact you again after the holidays.

Kind regards

Alan Henshall

Headteacher

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Coronavirus Update – 20th March 2020

I wanted to begin by saying what a great day we have had today. Despite the short notice and the challenging nature of the week, we have managed to put together final assemblies for Years 11 and 13 which did justice to these wonderful year groups as we say goodbye to them. The students were a credit to themselves, the values of the school and their families throughout the day.

We note that Ofqual have just made an announcement. They will “develop and set out a process that will provide a calculated grade to each student which reflects their performance as fairly as possible”. I have asked Roundwood Park staff not to respond to any emails from parents asking for grades to be raised.

For all year groups, we have today set out clearly our expectations of students and the quality of work they need to complete when they are at home. The PowerPoints shown in assemblies have been uploaded to Show My Homework so that you can see them there too and reinforce the same expectations at home. If you have any issues logging in to Show My Homework or other platforms please contact helpdesk@roundwoodpark.co.uk.

Please check the email sent to you this morning regarding your entitlement to school provision if you are a key worker. If you haven’t received this, please check your junk folder.

Have a great weekend and thank you again for all your support this week. I will be in contact again next week.

Kind regards

Alan Henshall

Headteacher

16:45 – Friday 20th March 2020