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Reading Girls' School newsletter - 18 september 2020

Principal's message: "The one constant thing in life, is change"

Introducing our new Hybrid model....

In the same way that we shared our reopening plans document with you through July and August, I will use next week’s newsletter to share with you in full, our Covid-19 Handbook outlining how we have assessed any impact of lockdown, how we will be bridging any gaps and significantly, how we will be able to provide access to lessons for those individual pupils who have to self-isolate for the mandatory 10 days.

We were really pleased with parent feedback and pupil engagement in our lockdown online provision. However we are, at least temporarily, in a new situation whereby schools have to remain open. We have to evolve all the time.

For us, that means adapting our lockdown online provision to a create a new ‘HYBRID MODEL’. This week we began further staff training on using Microsoft TEAMS, where we can enable girls who are at home isolating to take part in their lessons. We will be using next week to pilot this programme with some pupils with a view to being fully ready from Monday 28th September 2020 to roll out to everybody who needs to be at home self-isolating.

This will be much more effective than proving workbooks for the girls to complete and avoid the need for parents to come to school to collect work and in doing so not adhere to social distance guidance for family members displaying Coronavirus symptoms. Below is short summary of how it will work before our trial period next week.

It’s that time of the year again…when parents are selecting secondary schools for their children and we get to showcase why we are without argument, the Best School in Reading.

Our Open Evening this year will be different. We are holding three open evenings (Tue 29, Wed 30 Sept & Thu 1 Oct) and asking parents to book in advance so that we can manage numbers but there will be no tours. Instead, we will offer prospective parents the opportunity during the month of October to visit us during the school day for a personal tour to see the school in action. Open Days – again, we will be asking you to pre-book and will restrict visits to a maximum of two sets of parents per hour avoiding break and lunch times.

I would be grateful if you could please share the details of our 2020 Open Season with prospective parents that you may know especially if it will help them with their school selection.

Jon Gargan, Principal

First two weeks

Years 7 and 8 have spent the first two weeks of term in a variety of different lessons. This has included all of their normal subjects as well as First Aid and CPR training, mental health workshops, presentation skills, school routines and a visit from Berkshire Maestros.

The Year 8 students have each done a fabulous job of mentoring a Year 7 student both to aid with the settling in process and to support the girls with our Explorer Activities, some of which we were unable to complete virtually last term. The full timetable will start on Monday 21st September and the students are now excited and raring to go!

School Car Park

I would like to take this opportunity to remind you of the car parking and traffic system that we have in place at Reading Girls’ School.

The school car park gates will open every day between 08.00-08.30am and again between 15.05-15.45pm. The row of car parking spaces nearest the bike sheds will be kept largely free to allow you to pull into a space in order to drop off/pick up a student. I would be very grateful indeed if you could please emphasise to your daughter that if you are collecting her by car, that she is to wait for you on the pathway and not step into the driving area.

Moreover, those pupils not being collected by car are to use the pedestrian access to Northumberland Avenue. I kindly ask therefore that no vehicles stop on the busy road in front of the school.

Many thanks for your co-operation and support to ensure the safety of our site.

All meals are provided by Chartwells - a school meal consists of a main meal and a dessert for £2.40 a variety of snacks and drinks are also available.

Chartwells operate a cashless till system, operated by cards. The cards are topped up online using a secure website called ParentPay, if your daughter is eligible for free meals, £2.40 is credited to her card each day. Your daughter will be provided with her card and ParentPay login details on her first day at Reading Girls' School. You can find more information about ParentPay on their website http://www.parentpay.com. The school office is also happy to help with any enquiries.

Follow the link for details of the school menu.

Please read the message below from our uniform supplier Stephensons regarding the latest supply update information.