Letter from Headteacher Mr Brophy 14th July 2021
Coronavirus restrictions are being eased across the UK
Please remember Hands - Face - Space- Fresh Air
Dear Parents and Carers
In my last letter of the Summer term I would like to pay tribute to every member of our community as this challenging academic year draws to a close. During the pandemic I have been incredibly proud and humbled by the hard-work and resilience of staff and students alike and the ongoing support of parents and carers. Thank you and well done to everyone within our community.
As I reflect on the last 16 months I continue to be hugely impressed by our collective response to the adversity that we have faced together, it is truly a measure of the strength of each individual, and the outstanding nature of our school and its families.
The rewards assemblies for Year 7-10 that have been held this week have so far been a great success as we have celebrated the great achievements of our students in a wide range of aspects including, attendance, progress, attainment and success at Sports Day.
Congratulations to all students on their significant successes this year
I want to make a special mention for a student who displayed completely the values of our school earlier this year and that is Atlanta in Year 7. School was contacted at the start of term by a member of the public who had noticed one of our students tidying up the local war memorial on their way home from school after poor weather and high winds. I know our students regularly go above and beyond and display an excellent impression of our school in the local community but it is always lovely to be contacted by a member of the public with such high praise for our students. A suitable reward has been arranged for this fantastic behaviour.
On Friday we will be saying goodbye to three highly valued staff members who are moving onto new teaching positions and promotions in September 2021. I am sure you will join me in wishing Mr Carradus (Maths), Mrs Barnes (History) and Mr Hodkinson (Science) every success in their future careers.
Uniform and Expectations
As always in the new school year it is important that students arrive at school dressed smartly and ready to learn with school blazers and jumpers worn at all times unless permission is given to remove them. As you know, at our school students don’t wear hoodies/coats underneath their blazers but instead can wear a coat over their blazers when they are outside the school buildings. Students at St Thomas More RC College, don’t wear make-up (including fake tan) or jewellery, including piercings. Trousers for both boys and girls should be standard school trousers and must never be leggings, jeans or tight-fitting trousers. I am aware that many families will be buying new items of uniform at considerable expense in the summer so when making purchases of footwear please remember that our policy states that students should wear plain black leather school shoes and must not attend school in trainers. Our expectations on uniform and standards are communicated clearly to students and I recognise the importance of parents/carers continuing to support school to ensure that their son or daughter attends in correct uniform so that there is no avoidable disruption or distraction to learning, for the benefit of all.
Reminder: Arrangements for the last day of term
The school year finishes on Friday 16th July
The school will close to pupils at 12:15, please be aware that the 790 bus is not be available at this earlier time but the Y80 and Y79 will be running.
Students return in September 2021
The new school year begins on Thursday 2nd September, the first day is for Year 7 and Year 11 pupils only.
Year 8,9 and 10 pupils will only return on Friday 3rd September.
This is to allow staff the maximum opportunity to help our new Year 7 pupils settle into school on Thursday, as the Year 6 transition days were unfortunately cancelled due to COVID restrictions.
The arrival of the pupils over two days will also allow us to provide on-site VOLUNTARY lateral flow coronavirus tests for all students (who have provided consent) at the start of the academic year in line with the latest Government Guidance.
Please see the information provided at the end of this letter for further details on the testing system in school.
Please note these arrangements may be subject to change due to circumstances beyond our control that are related to the pandemic.
Advance Notice: Special 219 service.
In partnership with the bus company we have asked that the Special 219 service no longer collects pupils from Town Lane at the end of the school day in September due to the very narrow road and pavement near the bus stop that is unfortunately causing a health and safety issue for students and members of the community. You will be aware that for a significant period during 2020 when schools re-opened the Special 219 service was not able to operate, and pupils used the following straightforward alternatives for their journey home:
1) A short walk up Town Lane to the black and white church and get the 347 to Guide bridge (runs every 10 minutes) and then pick up the usual 219 public bus which passes Guide bridge (runs every 9 minutes).
2) Alternatively, the 206 bus (stops at the top of Town Lane) or 201 bus (stopping near Crown Point) can take many students to a similar final destination.
These options continue to be available for students who usually use the special 219 service when it ceases to run in September.
Please note that:
The 719 which is the equivalent morning service of the special 219 will still be running to bring students to school at the start of the day as it can stop directly in front of school when other buses are not waiting to collect.
All the usual public 219 buses will still be running that follow the normal route through Guide Bridge
Supermarket Voucher - Holiday Activities
We have again facilitated the distribution of Supermarket voucher for eligible families and for those children who are in receipt of Free School Meals. I would also like to draw your attention to the schemes that are being run under the Holiday Activities and Food project (HAF).
The HAF programme provides free places to all children eligible for benefits-related free school meals. Active Tameside is putting on activities to ensure that children from disadvantaged backgrounds can enjoy healthy food, take part in lots of great activities and hang out with their friends as well as making new ones.
Marcus Rashford MBE and Henry Dimbleby MBE (the co-founder of Leon who leads the National Food Strategy) and the Food Foundation are working together to help promote the Government’s (HAF) programme and there is a short video available online that has further information:
HAF Video https://youtu.be/KDgm8KpXAXE
Additional information and booking forms can be found on the following Active Tameside webpage under the heading “Fuel for Fun” (The relevant section is at the bottom of the page)
I wish all our families, students and staff a restful and well-deserved Summer Break.
Thank you to those staff who are in school next week running the Summer School for Year 6 students.
God bless and stay well,
St Thomas More RC College is a group of believers, united heart and soul in a Community which recognises the worth and dignity of all people. St Thomas More RC College is committed to developing fully the talents of all its members, in Communication of the Gospel values of peace, love, truth and justice; in Communion with Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Aims : There is a friendly and experienced teaching staff in the college that work together to support our Christian Ethos and ensure that each student is enabled to achieve their full potential. Our recent Ofsted report (February 2017) stated that all staff and pupils work harmoniously together to create a calm, purposeful and warm atmosphere. We are listed in the Good Schools Guide . The curriculum management structure in the school supports National Curriculum subject areas, Religious Education and Whole School Development. All staff are supported by a Senior Management team. There is a strong team of support staff including teaching support staff, secretaries, librarian/reprographics assistant, ICT, ADT and Science technicians, caretakers, lunchtime assistants, cleaners and kitchen staff. The collective strength of our staff ensures that the ethos and values in our Mission Statement provide all our pupils with high quality teaching and learning within a supportive environment.