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Messages from the Head

Messages from the Head 

3rd July 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians 

The last week of term has absolutely flown by and has been full of virtual celebrations. My gratitude must go to the pupils and every member of staff involved in pulling together all these special events. Teaching has continued on site and online, with teachers becoming extremely adept at managing the complexities of directing children from near and far, at the same time. 

You will I am sure, have read the headlines from the Government, about schools opening in September - be assured  that planning has already started and will continue throughout the summer break.

The school will be open with a skeleton staff next week however, the whole school will be closed for a week, from July 13th.

This year's results days fall on August 13th for Year 13 and August 20th for Year 11 and I look forward to seeing some of you on those occasions. 

Please accept my gratitude for your personal support and kindness since January 2015 and every good wish to you and your families for the future. It has been a privilege and joy, to have been Head of Farringtons and to watch your wonderful children, 'Develop and Shine.' 

With kind regards

Dorothy Nancekievill
Head

 

26 June 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians

The penultimate week of this school year has flown past and children from Years 2, 3, 4 and 5 joined Reception, Year 1 & 6 pupils, in the Junior School, on Tuesday. The excitement was tangible and the children have had a very successful week - it was a delight to see them both in class and enjoying running about in our beautiful grounds. My thanks to every pupil for their exemplary behaviour, to teachers for managing on site and online lessons, (sometimes simultaneously) and to parents for their support and positivity.

Students in Years 10 & 12 continued to attend specific lessons in school, feedback has been that they have welcomed the opportunity to return to school for face-to-face teaching and appreciate that this will stand them in good stead for return in September.

Farringtons, ‘Home and Away’ continues to showcase examples of learning across the ages and my thanks to Mrs Vail for all her efforts in compiling such an uplifting newsletter. Please click on THIS LINK.

A progress summary is currently being compiled for Senior School pupils as end of year exams have not taken place. A new style format has been devised to summarise student progress and attitude to learning during the online learning period of the last 3 months. The students will receive two grades in each of their subjects. Please see attached letter from Mr Garwood for further explanation.

It has been with a real tinge of sadness and regret, that we will not be able to physically share the end of term events with you this year however, we will be sharing virtual events. Please note the timings below, in order to be able to plan in your diaries next week.

Virtual End of Term Calendar

Wednesday 1 July

  • Virtual Junior School Prize Giving, to be posted at 4pm

Thursday 2 July

  • Year 13 Virtual Leavers’ Service, to be posted at 8.30 am (Year 13 only)
  • Virtual Senior School Prize Giving Service to be posted at 4 pm

Friday 3 July

  • Mrs Nancekievill’s Virtual Farewell Chapel Service, to be posted at 8.30 am

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mr Smith, Mrs Suverkrop, Mrs Vail and Mrs White for their advice and amazing technical skills in pulling all these events together.

Technically, the school year ends next Thursday for everyone however, in a slight change to the normal end of term arrangements, the Junior School will continue learning through to the end of the day on Thursday.  In the Senior School lessons will continue until Friday afternoon.

Yrs 7 and 8 will not be following their existing timetable on Friday, instead, Mr Essex has devised a ‘Slo-Mo’ Challenge. This will take the form of an Inter Form event in which students have the opportunity to show off their greatest talents, but record in ‘Slow Mo’. Collaborating as a Form group (with the help of their tutor) they will put the videos together with some backing music to showcase each Forms’ talents.  Please see a separate Schoolpost. 

It has been good to have the opportunity to talk with a number of parents at the school gate this week – thank you for your kind and appreciative comments.

Have a lovely weekend and keep safe.

With kind regards,

Dorothy Nancekievill

 

 

19 June 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

It has been good to see members of Year 10 & 12 and their teachers, back in to school this week and we will also be welcoming back pupils from all Junior School Years from next Tuesday. Due to significant parents requesting both on and off site lessons, we will also continue our online provision. Once again the planning behind these developments has been immense and my thanks must go to all the staff involved but in particular, Mr Young, Mr Charlton, Mrs Cryan and the Bursar, Mrs Eldridge and her team.

We presented our first Virtual Open Morning for prospective parents last Saturday and although there was a live element on the day, you can still see the videos we prepared on the school website and in the link in this week's Farringtons, Home and Away - see below.  Please view to be reminded about our beautiful campus. Mrs Vail spearheaded the Open Morning whilst producing yet another great edition of, 'Farringtons, Home and Away', which I commend to you, alongside all the previous editions which you can still access online.

Our full board of Governors met yesterday, for the final planned meeting of the year and I was able to thank them for the tremendous commitment they make to the school. Although the Governors have scheduled termly meetings, they have been available for advice throughout the lock down and this will continue during the summer months as we prepare for next September.

This week, samples of our new style Sports Kit and items sporting our new style crest have arrived from our uniform supplier, Schoolblazer and we are very pleased.  Please visit their WEBSITE for the full range.  We appreciate that there may be some items of uniform in your child/children’s wardrobe that remains a good fit and may do so for the next couple of years. Therefore, we do not expect you to buy the new Sports Kit or other newly branded uniform, e.g. the blazer and jumpers/cardigans for return to school in September, unless you need to do so. However, by September 2022, we envisage that all students will be wearing uniform, with our new crest. Please find attached further information and also information from Liz Johnston and her team from our onsite Uniform Shop. 

We are currently planning our Junior and Senior School Virtual Prize Giving Ceremonies to be shared during the last week of term however, more information about that next week.

With kind regards,

Keep safe and well,

Dorothy Nancekievill

Head

12 June 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

We are looking forward to welcoming members of Years 10 & 12 back to school from Monday and a tremendous amount of work, with regard to timetables, infection control, cleaning and keeping numbers to the stipulated level, has been going on over the past two weeks. My gratitude to Mr Young, Mr Garwood, Mrs Eldridge, Mrs White and Mr Noon in particular, for leading the work that has made the senior school as safe as possible for the return of pupils and teachers. It is strange to see the pews in the Chapel taped up in order to socially isolate us all during the daily safety briefings.  I am sure that has never happened before!

Once again your amazing children have produced some marvellous work throughout all age groups this week and I am sure you will enjoy looking at the photos and videos submitted for Farringtons Home and Away. Please click THIS LINK to view and enjoy.

The FPA have been in contact with me and have understandably decided to postpone their annual AGM, normally held at the end of June, to September. Please look out for the new date in the school bulletin.

Tomorrow at 10.00am we are presenting our debut Virtual Open Morning. Following my introduction to the VOM from the Chapel, a virtual tour around the school and a message from our new Headmaster, Mr Jackson, visitors can interact live in four breakout rooms. Leaders from the Senior & Junior Schools, Boarding and the Registrar, will be in the breakout rooms to answer the questions from prospective parents, normally responded to over refreshments in the school library at the end of their tours around the school. Please wish us well in this endeavour.

Farringtons has had a global perspective since its inception in 1911 and racism, in all its forms, is abhorred. This is also the view of the Methodist Church and I have included a message from the President of the Methodist Conference below, which I fully endorse.

Keep safe and well,

With kind regards,

Dorothy Nancekievill

A personal message from the President of the Methodist Conference, the Revd Dr Barbara Glasson

It is with outrage and deep sorrow that we have witnessed the recent brutal killing of George Floyd in the United States.

But outrage and sorrow are not a sufficient response to racism and inequality in society. How to begin a process of change? It starts with self-examination and listening to the people whose lives are affected by discrimination and hate.

This week I received these words from a Methodist living in south London:

“The young people whom I have worked with for over the last 15 years have felt the impact of racism in every institution they have been part of from schools, to university, to various work places, and other than local support and informal church networks they have not found the Methodist Church as a place that speaks up for them.”

As your President, I start by saying I am sorry. Sorry for being silent when we should have spoken out against the everyday injustices that affect BAME communities. I am sorry that, despite our efforts, we have not done enough for those who feel excluded and we need to do better. We know this includes people of all ages from the Windrush generation to the very young. I am sorry when we have not listened carefully enough and not challenged the assumptions of white privilege and bias.

Repentance can lead us to change, to embody a gracious, loving spirit of inclusion and understanding. There is no excuse for racism. All people are made in God’s image.  We are one body in Christ Jesus.

I hope we can listen more carefully to the voices of BAME members, especially younger people, who face racism, discrimination and violence on a daily basis. Then our Church must be brave, speak out, speak up and challenge racism wherever we find it, especially when we find it in ourselves. 

The Revd Dr Barbara Glasson, President of the Methodist Conference

5 June 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians

It has been a joy to have the Reception, Year 1 & 6 returners in school this week and both children and staff, have been outstanding. The new protocols have worked well and my thanks to the parents who have embraced new start and finish times.

This week's virtual newsletter is now called, 'Farringtons Home and Away' and as with previous editions (which can still be accessed on our website) is a marvellous read. I am particularly impressed with those pupils who have worked with their teachers, to create the music and very stylish photographs, for the Farringtons version of, 'He's got the whole world in His hands'. It is a fantastic piece of work and great fun to sing along with - you will find it on the front page.  Please view THE LINK.

Preparatory work is currently going on to enable some members of Year 10 & 12 to return, in an ad hoc way, to school from June 15th. The Government guidance is that no more than 25% of the usual numbers of Year 10 & 12 students can be on site at any one time and this, added to the complexities of senior timetables and social isolation requirements, is quite a conundrum. As with the Junior School, I have asked parents to let me know their preference regarding whether to return, or not, and these views will be taken into consideration within our decision making.

Keep safe and well.

With best wishes,

Dorothy Nancekievill 

Head

 

29 May 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians, 

I hope that you have been able to enjoy some of the lovely weather over half term with your families and that you were able to relax together. 

During half term there has a been a great deal of activity going on in preparation for the return of pupils from Reception, Year 1 & 6, in order to keep everyone as safe as possible. It included Infection control fogging, certified medical deep cleaning, erection of new signage and the delivery of PPE items. Due to the small numbers returning, online teaching will continue for these year groups however, that is only possible in the short term, as it will not be sustainable when more children return. 

There will be staff training on Monday for those involved in delivering and supporting our returners and those of us always in the building, are really looking forward to having more children in school. 

Attached to this message is the information shared with parents of the relevant year groups, which covers a myriad of changes to normal procedures including different start times, entrance procedures, groupings, social distancing rules, lunches and toilets. Children are not required to wear uniform, as that will enable them to wear clean clothes every day and they will need to observe all the appropriate hygiene requirements. Additionally, all compliance matters have been considered, including testing for fire hydrants and legionella. There is an extensive Risk Assessment in place, a digest of which will be shared with parents next week however, it will be reviewed and updated on a weekly basis should the numbers on site change. Parents are not allowed to drop off in the school grounds therefore, I would ask everyone to be respectful towards the neighbours in Shepherds Green. You will find a video below about entrance procedures and I would request that parents of Reception, Year 1 & 6 returners, should let them see it. 

https://youtu.be/nEqlb3WNEHY

A number of staff have been unfurloughed, to ensure that we have sufficient staff to support each separate, ‘bubble’ and protocols have been developed with the school nurse, should a child or adult display any COVID-19 symptoms during the day – no one of course, should enter the school building if they have shown any symptoms at home. Equally if anyone is contacted regarding, ‘Track and Tracing’ the school should be informed immediately.  

Should your child be extremely anxious about returning to school, our School Counsellor is available - please contact Mr Simon Smith to organise an appointment, if you feel they need her support. 

I will update you with regard to the way forward for Years 10 & 12 by June, 8th. The current guidance suggests that no more that 25%, of either year group, can be in school at any one time. We will be scoping the implications of that advice carefully, as it would be extremely difficult to maintain the current online provision alongside on-site lessons. Parents’ views will be sought at the end of next week regarding their preferences and we will concurrently, interrogate the timetable and practical implications. 

Year 9 will be starting their GCSE courses on Monday which will set them up extremely well for Year 10 in September. 

My ‘Thought for the Day’ for the students on Monday will refer to visiting the Golden Gate Bridge and not being able to see it because of fog, but knowing that it was there. Be assured we are all part of the Farringtons community whether we are in the building or not, academic learning is continuing apace, your children are taking more responsibility for their actions and that when this current, ‘fog’ lifts, we will all have learnt valuable lessons. 

Keep safe and well, 

With kind regards, 

Dorothy Nancekievill 

 

22 May 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

It was my pleasure to speak to senior students this morning about the acronym PPE. We have become acutely aware of the importance of Personal Protective Equipment for all our key workers and PPE is also well known by university students as Philosophy, Politics and Economics, however, my version of PPE today was about Practice, Perseverance and Example. 

Whilst reflecting on how well the pupils have done this term, my thanks must also go to you for; enabling your sons and daughters to work successfully online, showing perseverance with the initial IT up skilling that was required and being good examples for your children to follow, within your home environment.

This week in school, our efforts have focussed on risk assessing all the procedures that relate to the potential return of Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 after half term and cross referencing them with Government COVID-19 and Child Protection guidelines. I am confident that we can manage all the issues raised, however, the need for these new protocols will undoubtedly make the school environment totally different from the one we had before we were told to close. 

Deep cleaning, of the areas to be used, will take place all next week, signage will be introduced to manage each separate 'bubble' of children and teachers, staff members have been unfurloughed and there will be a training day for those involved in school based teaching on Monday, 1st June. We are therefore working towards Tuesday, 2nd June being the first day of the new system. Key workers’ children, who will now be in their own separate bubble, can still return to the Junior School on Monday, 1st June.  

We are planning to continue online and school based learning, simultaneously, as requested by parents, for these three year groups, however, we have only been able to manage this arrangement, due to the numbers of children involved. Going forward, we do not believe that this model will be possible when more year groups return in September. Mr Charlton, Mrs Cryan and Mrs Fox will communicate with Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 parents directly before they return, so that the children know more about the new environment they will meet. School uniform will not be necessary as children should come in with fresh, clean clothes every day. 

All the arrangements that are currently being planned for, may be subject to change when we are given further Government guidance regarding the infection rate on May 28th.

Farringtons Faraway continues to remind us of how amazing, capable and resilient your children are and I hope that this week's contributions will brighten your day. Farringtons Faraway link.

Thank you for the tremendous support you give to the school and please allow yourself and your family, a well-earned rest over half term.

With kind regards,

Dorothy Nancekievill

Head

 

18 May 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,
 
Much planning and deliberation has gone on over the past week, regarding how to respond to the Government's strategy for reopening schools. My thanks to all Reception, Year 1 & 6 parents who completed our questionnaire, as it has certainly helped us to develop a strategy.
 
In Reception & Year 1, parents views were split, with approximately one third wanting their child to return to school and two thirds, preferring that they stayed at home. In Year 6 the responses were different, with the result being roughly half and half. This obviously creates a dilemma as initially, I felt that we had to do one thing, or the other, but not both. My feeling was that providing face to face learning, alongside continuing online for others, would be impossible. However, as the numbers in these year groups are manageable, we are currently planning to work towards offering consistent lessons in school and online, from June 1st. It is essential however, that parents, pupils and teachers remember that the school experience will not be the same as before we closed. 
 
For example;
  • Children may not be taught in their normal classrooms 
  • They will need to sit at tables on their own and complete desk based exercises, with limited access to shared resources
  • They will be assigned to a 'bubble' that they must remain in i.e. they cannot choose the group they are in and will not be allowed to socialise outside that bubble
  • Length of days will be different from before
  • Start and end times will be staggered
  • Parents will not be allowed on site
  • Movement around school will be limited
  • No food or transport will be provided
  • No-one should come to school with any of the COVID-19 symptoms and if a child becomes ill at school, they must be collected as soon as possible
  • There will be no activities, or after school clubs
  • PPE will be used if necessary
We are currently working on revised risk assessments covering all aspects of school life and the list of issues to be dealt with is extensive. The school will be deep cleaned over half term, new signage will be in place, personal hygiene protocols will be enforced should we return and I would urge parents of any child potentially coming in, to also consider their own circumstances and how they would minimise the risk of contamination between family members, when their child comes home.
 
There are many details that need to be finalised before we can share the fine detail of how this will work however, be assured that we are doing all we can to make wise decisions.
 
In the case of Pre Reception, we have thought long and hard about their needs and feel that desk based learning is neither beneficial, edifying, or possible for this age of child. We will therefore continue with the current arrangement, until the end of term. We will continue to review possibilities for Years 2-5 but there are currently no plans for them to return on a specific date. Senior School lessons will continue online after half term however, consideration will be given as to how to best support the practical side of Year 10 & 12 pupils learning.
 
As outlined above, much time over half term will be spent preparing the school for a phased return and everything will be done to make the site as safe as possible. If the professional advice changes, (including the infection update to be shared by the Government on May, 28th), my priority will remain to keep everyone out of harm's way and it may affect the decision to reopen, or not.
 
More detail will be shared with Reception, Year 1 & 6 parents by the end of the week.
 
Keep safe and well,
 
With kind regards,
 
Dorothy Nancekievill

 

15 May 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

I trust that you are having a productive week and are keeping safe and well.

The main focus at school since Sunday, has been to look at the implications of the Prime Minister's statement with regard to; teaching & learning, risk assessments, health & safety, social distancing, amending site procedures, plus many more considerations. Parents of Reception, Year 1 & 6 have been canvassed for their views about re-opening to a school environment that will be very different to the one we had before we were told to close by the Government.  I look forward to analysing their responses over the weekend. I will update you regarding what we intend to do after half term, on Monday 18 May.

Once again, Farringtons Faraway is fantastic, thank you for continuing to contribute so well. I was delighted that Dame Elizabeth Fradd, who was our guest at Senior Prize Giving two years ago and a pupil here in the 1960s, has shared a photograph of herself in her finery as High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire. This is a highly prestigious, historic position and I am sure she will fulfil this role with distinction. Please view the link to this week's edition of Farringtons Faraway.

Your children are doing incredibly well online and I was delighted to share more admirably deserved Head's Commendations this week. I have also been able to look, via TEAMS, at a number of amazing lessons and assignments presented by teachers and well received by their pupils.

At the Governors’ Meeting last night, they asked me to acknowledge the great efforts made by pupils, teachers and parents since the school was told to lock down. They could clearly see the tremendous learning curve that has taken place, how well everyone has stepped up to the challenge and how the systems have continued to develop. Their thanks therefore go to all involved and I would add that their support during this period has been invaluable.

We are all reading advice from a number of sources every day, it can be rather overwhelming, however, I have often found over the past 30 plus years, that children are extremely perceptive and reflective and thought you might like to read, '8 Things I learned about distance learning simply by asking my children'.

https://www-fragments2-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/www.fragments2.com/blog/2020/5/9/8-things-i-learned-about-distance-learning-simply-by-asking-my-children?format=amp

Have a good weekend. Keep safe and well.

With kind regards,

Dorothy Nancekievill

Head

7 May 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians

It has been lovely to see so many pictures in the media about the celebrations enjoyed in 1945, on VE Day. Plans had previously been discussed with the FPA and we had intended to have a street party lunch today at school, with old fashioned games and a celebration cake to take home.  However, as I look out on the field I can only see quite a few rabbits and two foxes, rather than hundreds of children socialising and enjoying themselves. Please click here to read this week's exciting installment of 'Farringtons Faraway' which once again, is a joy to read.

During the First World War, the Farringtons girls were evacuated to Devon and at the start of the Second World War they took residence at the Trecarn Hotel in Babbacombe, as the School site was commandeered by the Government for military use.  Later in 1940, the School had to close because the RAF took over the hotel however, the spirit of the school was kept alive during the dark years of the war by the School Magazine, 'The Farringtonian' which contained letters from the old girls and staff. When peace finally came, work began to clean and restore the buildings ready to re-open. It made me ponder on the whole variety of ways we have been able to communicate with each other over the past few weeks, and ahead, to the matters we will have to consider when we are advised to re-open. 

Reflecting on this 75th Anniversary reminds us that is always good to celebrate on peace, friendship, fortitude and about how people adapt to every new situation they have to deal with, whether good or bad. All of our pupils and teachers in the community have certainly had to adapt and learn new skills since we closed on the advice of the Government. It was very helpful therefore, to have responses to our survey last weekend from 199 parents about online teaching. The main points raised from that exercise were:

  • Just over two thirds of the group who responded were happy with the amount of work set for pupils, with one third feeling that we were either giving too much, or not enough work
  • Two thirds felt that the current amount of screen time was about right, however, the other third felt that combined with further, non-school related screen time, it needed to be monitored
  • Regarding what was going well, feedback included for example; live lessons were successful and engaging, pre-recorded lessons allowed pupils to work at their own pace, the teachers should be congratulated on their endeavours, high quality lessons and encouragement, they liked the routine in the morning, the interaction with tutors and that assignments allowed the pupils the flexibility to juggle their work around specific family circumstances
  • Comments raised regarding what pupils were finding difficult, were for example; locating where some of the resources were saved, confusion over some deadlines, high volumes of work particularly if there were technical issues, staying focused in live lessons that lasted more than 30 minutes, the time required to complete homework and some parents requested more live lessons
  • Some top tips from parents included; structure the day, use the student planner to keep organised, be kind to yourself, review work completed at the end of the day, trust your child with managing their time and keep a sense of humour - there was also a suggestion about the need for chocolate and other treats to keep you going!

Rest assured that we will continue to develop our provision and once again thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.

Please find attached the Yr 11 and Yr 13 Academic Enrichment Programme information booklet about the new online courses starting on Monday.  Links to all Chapel services can be accessed either through TEAMS or from 'Farringtons Faraway', the weekly Senior Sports Challenges have been going really well and the, 'He's got the Whole World in His Hands' project is coming on apace.  Also attached is the second edition of Farringtons Extra Curricular Remote Learning Resources.  

Last week, Mr Charlton and I awarded a number of Commendations for excellent pupil work and there have been many, many more this week. We will keep a record of these awards and will find a way of presenting a prize to the pupil with the highest number at half term.

The Bursar has received a few messages from parents about not receiving fee invoices.  Although we normally send these by post, this term they were all sent by email. If you have not yet received your fees invoice, please contact Mrs Bradley at shbradley@farringtons.kent.sch.uk and she can resend the paperwork.

Please accept my best wishes for an enjoyable Bank Holiday Weekend and I cannot resist finishing with the words that I am sure we will hear a great deal tomorrow:

'We'll meet again

Don't know where

Don't know when

But I know we'll meet again some sunny day

Keep smiling through

Just like you always do

Til the blue skies drive the dark clouds far away'

Keep safe and well.

With kind regards

Dorothy Nancekievill

 

Friday 1 May 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians

I am sure you have all had a busy and I hope, a successful and productive week.  This week's 'Farringtons Faraway' includes photos and videos of a wide range of student activities and I am extremely grateful to those of you who have sent them to Mrs Vail, please keep them coming in. A particular feature included this time, are updates from members of our Alumni. Please click on this week's link to Farringtons Faraway.

Although we have already had some contributions to the, 'He's Got the Whole World in His Hands' project, we would welcome more recordings of you and your children singing about, 'Doctors and Nurses', 'Key Workers', 'Patients and their Families', 'Farringtons Community' and 'Pupils, Past and Present'. All the details you need are on the front page of Farringtons Faraway and all ages and stages are welcome to join in.

Also, you will have received a SchoolPost today providing information and the link to our questionnaire regarding online learning - we look forward to your feedback.

There have been many joys this week, but also continuing medical concerns about members of the school family.  Parents, teachers and children are all dealing with a situation that cannot be controlled, or that we want to be in and it is impossible to know, or understand each other’s particular pressures.

We can however, support and encourage each other, as we are all in this together and when things become difficult or frustrating, endeavour to be patient, wise and kind. 

Thank you for your continued support and keep safe and well.

With kind regards

Dorothy Nancekievill

Head

 

26 April

Dear Parents & Guardians,

The first week of term has been a completely different one to the norm, but nonetheless very exciting, with pupils, parents and teachers all doing a tremendous job of learning, working and communicating.

As you can imagine, the school has been extremely quiet, however, our Key Workers' children have been on top form, as have been Mrs Cryan and Mr Charlton who have been looking after them.

As pictures speak a thousand words, I would urge you to read the first edition of "Farringtons Faraway" - click here to view - as it is brimming full of pictures of our amazing pupils in action this week.

There are also details of a wonderful initiative from Mr Rowe and Mr Matthews, that we hope will involve the whole school, (including parents, grandparents, community choir members, FPA and Alumni), in recording, "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands" with some new, specially written verses - please get involved.

Thank you as always for all your support and keep safe.

With kindest regards

Dorothy A Nancekievill

Head'

 

Sunday 19 April 2020

Dear Parents, Guardians and Students,

Welcome to Farringtons Summer Term Online.

It is always a privilege to speak to our pupils in our beautiful chapel, so please find the link to my Beginning of Summer Term Service below:

 https://youtu.be/aCWzDtJXp9E

Within my talk, I have referred to inspirational figures like Captain Tom Moore, who reminds us that, "The sun will shine on you again and the clouds will go away". I have also suggested ways that we can be the best of ourselves by being kind, keeping busy with school work, developing old, or new, skills and by being wise in our decision making at this difficult time.

Our school motto, Posside Sapientiam, reminds us to be wise in all we do and I would like to challenge everyone to work together to be positive and supportive during this anxious time for so many people.
The whole school photograph remains in front of the altar as a lovely reminder of every pupil and member of staff and will do so until we are allowed to re-open the school.

Although a very different start to our summer term, I do hope that by working with commitment, you will develop new skills, become more intellectually curious, more self-reliant and that as members of the Farringtons community your personal light will shine.

With kind regards,

Dorothy Nancekievill

Head

Wednesday 8 April

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Please accept my thanks to those of you who have so kindly sent in emails of support for the school at this anxious time for everyone, it has been most appreciated.

As far as I am currently aware; pupils, staff and family members are either well, coping with self-isolation, or recovering from illness.  We were extremely concerned, in particular, about a member of staff and the son of one of our teachers who were on ventilators, (but thankfully both are now home and getting better) and another teacher who had pneumonia. Every family situation will be very different however, please be assured of my continued thoughts and prayers as we work together to keep each other safe and well.

I also need to publicly thank the staff who have been working tirelessly and with a tenacious spirit, preparing for the brave new world of online teaching for the whole school. Much training, lateral thinking and many team meetings have been happening over the past two weeks, to get ready for the start of the Summer Term. Mrs Fox, Mrs Cryan, Mr Charlton and Mr Young will be in touch to give you much more detail just before term starts to tell you more about how the new regime will work. (Mr Charlton would be grateful if parents were able to provide Junior School children with access to a headset, microphone and camera).

We will of course review the provision weekly and are aiming to get a balance between your children sitting at a computer, interacting with teachers, being active, showing initiative, having feedback and enough time to be creative and reflective.

It would be foolhardy to promise that everything will be perfect from the start of the Summer Term however, I can promise that we are committed to doing all we can to support your children. The programme for all ages will be far more interactive than the end of last term, when we were coping with new systems alongside significant staff absence and, we have constructed a questionnaire that will be issued to all parents in week two, to establish how your children and you are coping at home.

I am also grateful to the staff who have agreed to go on furlough, for their understanding and resilience. It does mean however, that as the majority of staff on furlough are support staff, our usual support mechanisms will not be in place, therefore putting more pressure on those who are still working.

In some of the correspondence I have received, I have been made aware of understandable parental concerns about school fees and I have explained that there are three ways in which the school will strive to support parents should they be in need. They are; agreeing to a different sort of payment plan/delay with the Bursar, access to Hardship Funding and Bursary support in the longer term. Please contact Mrs Eldridge and me, if you would like to access any of these strategies. Be assured that we always operate tight financial protocols regarding our costs and all school fees paid remain within the Farringtons School control.

The FPA have continued to be highly supportive at this time and have suggested that the contribution normally paid to them should not be taken this term, it will therefore be removed from your school bill.

You will be pleased to learn that our Science goggles have found their way via Mrs Griffin, to frontline staff at Manor Brook Medical Centre (they were very pleased to receive this eye protection) and the Easter Eggs purchased for end of term prizes have been gratefully received by staff at Queen Mary’s Hospital.

These are incredibly uncertain times, the sooner things get back to normal the better, but in the meantime, I hope that over the weekend you will have time to enjoy being with your immediate families and to reflect on the true meaning of Easter.

With kind regards,

Dorothy Nancekievill

Head

 

Friday 3rd April

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Today, Ofqual have published their decisions regarding how public examination grades will be awarded - please see the full guidance here: 

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/how-gcses-as-a-levels-will-be-awarded-in-summer-2020

Please read this information carefully and be assured that the school will follow government guidance to the letter, to ensure that fair and objective grades can be awarded. 

Ofqual have published a very helpful letter for parents and students, outlining the specific ways in which grades will be awarded which includes; process, timelines and the rationale underpinning their thinking. I urge you to read the letter below carefully, it will answer many of the questions you might have. 

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads
/attachment_data/file/877830/Letter_to_students_-_Summer_2020_grading.pdf
 

These continue to be demanding times however, thank you for the support you are giving your children and the school. 

Keep safe and well, 

Dorothy Nancekievill

Head’

 

Monday 30 March 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

This is certainly the strangest End of Term letter that I have compiled however, it comes with my respect and gratitude towards every member of the Farringtons community. The Chaplain and I filmed a short Easter Service for the Senior and Junior Schools and I hope that you will encourage your children to listen and sing along. The links are below;

  1. Senior School Easter Service - https://youtu.be/HcnkMb1uOsk

  2.  Junior School Easter Service - https://youtu.be/Tjeid-nTILo

Our pupils have responded well to a new way of working which, although it has happened due to COVID-19, will greatly aid their academic development through having to take responsibility for their own learning. Education is for life and having the desire to be always open to new ideas and many different ways of operating, will ultimately ensure personal growth and intellectual rigour.

For parents, and I include staff members who are setting up online lessons whilst managing their own children, thank you for your fortitude and lateral thinking. I am always talking about the need for good role models and seeing parents working hard, under difficult circumstances, will also greatly influence your children’s view of the world and ability to cope under duress.

I would also like to publicly thank the staff who have embraced a new style of learning with little notice and whilst for some this is not a new phenomenon, for others it has been a giant leap. Over the holiday, further strategies will be developed to ensure more regular face to contact, more structured timetables, still with sensitivity towards families where adults and children are all working from home and sharing devices, and Well-Being lessons.

Two crucial members of my finance team have both been ill and away from work for most of the past two weeks which is why I have not communicated any update regarding next term’s school fees. There are important meetings with our Governors and the Methodist Independent Schools Trust regarding the way forward this week, therefore in the meantime, no school bills will be issued until these have happened and we have completed more financial modelling. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Please find attached a long list of activities and events that took place before school life changed completely – I hope the list provides some joyful reminders! We have also received a large number of supportive messages from the school Alumni this week which is very encouraging.  

I have certainly missed handing out certificates, acknowledging many successes and presenting much egg shaped chocolate this week, but nevertheless pray that you all keep safe, well and in good spirits during the Easter Break.

With great affection and concern for every school family,

Dorothy A Nancekievill

Head

Friday 27 March

Dear Parents and Guardians,

It certainly feels like more than a week since we closed the school site, as so much has happened since then.

You will be pleased to know that all the boys boarders have remained well, having been looked after superbly by our boarding and catering staff and will all have left the grounds by tomorrow afternoon. Most teachers have kept well, although not all, so as I mentioned on Wednesday, after Easter we will be in a better position to cover work for classes should we need to.

As far as online learning is going we have; had excellent results and feedback from many quarters, been able to track which students have viewed tasks, or not, and also become aware that some children are not totally comfortable at being visually online. It would be extremely helpful if you as families, trialled the use of Teams and/or webcams between you, so that your sons and daughters can start to feel comfortable with the medium. Please also check that they have logged into every subject and not just those they prefer!

After Easter our plan is to roll out far more teacher led lessons, although the Maths Department is already doing sterling work in this regard and this experience will inform other areas of the curriculum.

Please find below the following;

  1. The most up to date information from Ofqual regarding public examinations
  2. A link to ‘Reading Bingo’ from the librarian
  3. The Parents’ Guide to coping with school closures
  4. Today’s, ‘Thought for the Day’ from Mr Smith

On Monday the Chaplain and I plan to present a short Easter End of Term Service to remind us all of sacrifice and rebirth at this very anxious time for everyone – I hope that you will be able to imagine yourself sitting in the Chapel with us as you watch.

Have a restful weekend and keep safe,

With kind regards,

Dorothy A Nancekievill

 

  1. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/further-update-on-2020-exams
  2. https://bookfairs.scholastic.co.uk/book-bingo
  3. http://www.theparentsguideto.co.uk/coronavirus
  4. https://youtu.be/l7z4VWO_qgA

Wednesday 25 March

Dear Parents and Guardians,

Even this time last week I could not have imagined that the school would be totally silent today however, although your children are not here they are very much in my thoughts and prayers, as are you. Ironically, the school site it looking beautiful, the magnolia trees have blossomed, the daffodils are coming through and we had great excitement yesterday, when the Year 2 chicks hatched!

Online learning has started apace – we are aware that it is not yet perfect, but we will be trialling more face to face tuition with some classes by the end of this week, so that this method can be rolled out to all year groups after Easter. I would be grateful if you checked that your children have joined the various ‘Teams,’ as it became apparent today that a small number have not yet opened the work available to them.

In addition, some staff who have had to self-isolate may be finding it difficult to keep providing work until they feel better. I would therefore ask for your forbearance as we work out a system to manage this problem, between our Heads of Department.

You and your children may have already started to use online reading sites however, if not, you might like to follow this link, recommended by the school librarian, as there are good reading and writing activities for all age groups within this resource.

https://www.worldbookday.com/online-masterclasses

The anxiety regarding external examinations continues however, do read again the link I shared on Monday from the Government, as it is the best, current information. It will also be helpful if pupils continue working to give us as much evidence as possible, to support any estimations we need to do. Whatever happens, I am happy to confirm that all current Year 11 Farringtons students will be allowed to return to Year 12. We are already aware of our pupils’ academic potential, will have the work that is completed now and after Easter to help to guide the best choices of subjects and happily, we have a wide range of courses on offer. We will also support Year 13 to get to their university of choice.

I was pleased to hear from the Maths Department today regarding the excellent work that has been completed by many pupils, in fact, Mrs Hanson gave some great examples of her students working extremely hard.

There are also lots of great examples within the Creative and Performing Arts with Mr Rowe informing me that, his ‘Year 9 Option Groups are doing an awesome job’ and that he has received some great composition work from them. He also passed to me a sheet produced by one of his Year 9 students, regarding how to add work to an assignment on ‘Teams’ from the pupils perspective – I have attached it for you to share with your children

Please urge your children to check their ‘Teams’ frequently, particularly the posts and the assignments.

Mr Charlton has asked me to remind you the Junior School work is mostly focused on the contents of the orange folders, or work emailed directly to parents.

Should you need to get in touch with the school please email the relevant person rather than calling reception. We are hoping to continue to man the switch board in the morning from 9.00 – 12.00 however, please only make contact this way in an emergency.

As a staff group we will do everything we can to continue educating your daughters and sons of all ages, through this difficult time, whilst being sensitive to the family and health pressures that may come along for you to cope with.

With kind regards,

Dorothy A Nancekievill

 

Monday 23 March 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians

I trust that you are starting to adjust to a very different lifestyle for you and your families. 

Social distancing is extremely difficult however, it is imperative that we adhere to the policy. 

The government produced an extremely helpful paper regarding public examinations at the weekend and whilst it does not give all the answers, it is does outline the overarching strategy being developed – you can access it by following this link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-cancellation
-of-gcsesas-and-a-levels-in-2020/coronavirus-covid-19-cancellation-of-gcses-as-
and-a-levels-in-2020

Junior School staff members have been looking after a small number of Key Workers’ children today and I have been asked to remind parents that they must remember to bring their orange folders with them, should they be coming into school. In the Senior School, no pupils required supervision however, many staff were here developing their online schemes of work whilst taking social distancing very seriously. 

We will continue to do our best to man the school from 8.30am to 3.50pm this week although, as you can imagine, more staff members have had to self-isolate as a result of the government guidelines now in place, regarding living with elderly people and those with medical conditions. FIZ Club will not be running this week and we will take a view about whether to restart it again, after the Easter holidays. 

Please find below information below as follows; 

1. A message from Mr Garwood for Year 11 and 13 parents and pupils 

2. Information about how Visiting Music Staff will continue to work 

3. Information about Speech and Drama lessons

In the meantime, we would love some feedback regarding your child’s/children’s online learning activities. If you are happy to share some images that we could post on our social media pages, please send them to marketing@farringtons.kent.sch.uk – we will only refer to those in these photos, by first name. 

Thank you to everyone who has sent in supportive and encouraging emails and please keep well. 

With kind regards

Dorothy A Nancekievill 

Head

1. A message from Mr Garwood for Year 11 & 13 Students and Parents

OFQUAL are continuing to work on the specific details regarding the evidence schools will need to provide so the boards can arrive at students’ “calculated grades”. 

In the absence of that detail, we will continue to set meaningful academic work for students on Microsoft Teams. This may, or may not count toward your final grades. We have instructed your teachers to continue to set past papers and revision activities. You must assume that you are working towards your examinations and that the work produced (still) counts toward that end. Where applicable, students still working on coursework, EPQ and NEA deadlines should continue to meet them. In this, the most unusual of circumstances, we accept that your motivation levels may not be as high as they would be in the run up to your public examinations but, it is crucial to keep working for the following reasons: 

• We just do not yet know what OFQUAL/Exam boards will specifically ask for (guidance may very well change when we know this)

• So that you can control what you can control

• You may end up having to sit your exams in the event of a contested result, whenever this might be

• You may have younger siblings in the house and it is important that you set the right example

You will agree I am sure, keeping a sense of momentum and purpose is important especially when many other normal activities are not available to us because of the current Government guidelines regarding social distancing. 

2. Instrumental Music Lessons – Mr Rayner

• A Microsoft Team has been set up for each visiting music teacher (VMT) 

• The list of pupils has been included, just like all the other class teams

• The VMT can set assignments, just like the other subject teachers

• Pupils can video their results and send this within a secure environment, just like the other lessons

• The VMT will then be able to comment on successes and give suggestions for improvements

• This way, although different, peripatetic music lessons can continue weekly as now   

• Some VMTs may use Skype or other formats to continue with lessons and they will contact you about this

3. Speech and Drama Lessons – Mrs Freeston

LAMDA examinations, which were due to take place in June, will be postponed. They will be rearranged once school reopens. In the meantime, Mrs Freeston will continue to teach students on a weekly basis, via Teams.  

20 March 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians

It was good to welcome Year 6 back following their trip to the Isle of Wight and they have had a marvellous time. My thanks to the staff involved and their parents, for supporting the decision to continue with this adventure – they even had a private and exclusive tour around Osbourne House!

It was however, an emotional day for the students who start study leave early without yet knowing exactly how their grades and university places will be affected. We quickly created assemblies for them to get together and to reassure them of the school’s support.

The school will be open next week for the children of key workers during normal school hours and distance learning starts in earnest from Monday. Within the information below we have attempted to give as much structure as we feel able to at present, please use the following email address should you need further IT support – remotelearning@farringtons.kent.sch.uk

We have five days before the Easter break to trial our systems and for parents to start to establish some sort of routine for your children at home. We will also share further extension opportunities next week and I will continue to communicate with you regularly. Senior members of staff will be in school every day.

There undoubtedly will be issues that we have not yet ironed out however, I would ask you to be patient with us as we strive to provide new ways of learning.

John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist Church and its schools, famously said, “Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can.” It is a great way to live our lives no more so than now.

Be assured of my continued support for you and your families.

With kind regards

Dorothy A Nancekievill

Head

19 March 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

It was good to be able to have meetings with all members of the teaching staff today and to thank them for approaching this new method of distance learning with such positivity. We also spent time with Year 11 & 13 reassuring them of our support both now and with regard to university places.

The staff in KS1 and EYFS are working on contact with parents and children via the portal. The Bromley Festival Choir Competition has been understandably cancelled on Saturday.

My thanks to the Key Workers who have already been in contact and I would be grateful if any others that need help, would let me know by tomorrow at 10.00am, so that we can share our plans with all involved.

Below you will find further information from a number of areas within the school as follows;

  1. Physical Activity suggestions
  2. BTEC Coursework information
  3. Year 11 Year book and hoodies
  4. Duke of Edinburgh expeditions
  5. Suggestions for supporting your child

These are clearly unprecedented times and we are doing our utmost to ensure continuity of education, while the school is closed to day pupils. We will be as supportive as we can be to those in our community who are experiencing financial difficulties, caused by the current situation. The bursary team will be reviewing our costs to ensure that the appropriate savings are made whilst school is not open and where we are able, these savings will be passed on to parents. However, please remember that we also need to ensure the long term survival of the school, so that our pupils have a school to return to when we are allowed to re-open.

As the day has progressed it has become apparent that some of our girls and boys have not grasped what social distancing means, so without frightening them, I suggest that you reemphasise that it does not mean spending time with their friends socially but will be an opportunity to develop self-reliance skills. In addition, please also monitor usage of social media sites and encourage some sort of physical activity.

Teachers from KS2 upwards, have continued to work with our pupils on Teams and final touches to step-by-step instructions for Teams will be distributed tomorrow. You will also receive a suggested rubric for pupil workload and priorities. I was impressed today to discover that during a language lesson two students who were at home already, had joined in with everyone else. Next week will be a learning opportunity for both families and pupils to work this new approach before we now break for the Easter holiday on Friday, 27th March

A number of our pupils benefit from the support given by our School Counsellor, Colette Grindley and we are working on ensuring that she can keep in contact with the pupils that need her help the most.

My continued thoughts and concern for you and your extended families,

With kind regards,

Dorothy Nancekievill

Further Information

1.   Physical activity is important for all individuals as we are aware of the benefits to health and mental wellbeing.

The PE Department would to encourage all pupils to take part in some activities:

EYFS & KS1 – www.bbcsupermovers
KS2 and above – www.sportengland.org/news/how-stay-active-while-youre-home

It is important to remember that you can do these activities in your home.

2.   BTEC Coursework can be completed electronically and as such the sampling process will continue this academic year. Students have nearly completed their BTEC qualification(s) and we have most of the necessary evidence needed to complete the sampling process.

Reminders for those students undertaking a BTEC qualification:

  • Save your BTEC coursework in the one drive, labelled in appropriate folders – They started to do this last week.
  • Complete any outstanding coursework for Level 3 by the end of the Easter break.
  • Contact your Teacher if you have any issues or Miss Ootim

3.   Year 11 - Year book and Hoodies

Unfortunately, we have had to stop the creation of the yearbook. However, students have asked if we can still go ahead with the hoodies. Therefore, a World Pay link will be set up on the portal to enable you to pay online. All orders must be received by Thursday 26th March at 11:59 pm. If you have already paid Mr Jones via cash or cheque, this will have been returned this to your son/ daughter today. The Hoodies will be ordered on Friday 27th March. If, for whatever reason we cannot order the hoodies, then you will of course receive a full refund.

4.   All planned Duke of Edinburgh expeditions for this academic year have been postponed.  We will hold on to paid fees with hope of deferring and rearranging expeditions to next year.  Mr Essex will keep you updated as and when we have further information.

5.   Suggestions for supporting your child - https://www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/helping-children-cope-with-stress-print


Wednesday 18 March 2020 

Dear Parents & Guardians 

The Prime Minister has just confirmed that schools are to be closed at the end of the week, this will give us time to finesse the online Guides that have already been shared within the school.  They will be sent digitally to all families by 5.00pm on Friday afternoon, to KS2 and above pupils.

Thank you for organising Senior School pupils to bring in their devices today, other than some issues with Wi-Fi overload, the pupils have done well and the vast majority are set up on Microsoft Teams. 

In the Junior School, KS2 pupils have had the opportunity today, as they will for the next two days, to log on to Microsoft Teams to enable them to access work after Friday.  For pupils who have been away from school, as stated above, Guides on accessing this application will be sent to all families digitally. Although many students will access Teams through a laptop, or desktop, it is also very easy to download through the Apple App store. 

Due to staff shortages, curriculum swimming will not take place over the next two days however, we hope to continue with before and after school swimming club. FIZ trampolining and gymnastics will not be running.  We will review the return time planned for the Year 6 IOW Trip, the current thinking is for them to leave first thing on Friday morning rather than later in the day so that we can give them their individual curriculum packs.

With regard to boarders, many have already returned home however, for those still on site, we will do our best to support and if necessary, look after them over the weekend. As with day pupils, we will continue to educate boarders from a distance, therefore it is imperative that they also become familiar with Teams. I would ask parents and guardians of boarders to let us know about travel plans immediately and I can confirm that any absence due to the Covid-19 virus will not need to be reported to UKVI, therefore it will not affect their Tier 4 visa status. 

The School Nurse is our expert on site and will of course send home anyone who shows clinical symptoms of the virus. I do understand that it is a very anxious time for pupils and parents however, I have complete faith in Sister Boyle’s judgement and will only be acting on her medical advice regarding the need for sending students home and isolation. She has assured me that we have not had any pupils coughing persistently in any classes today. If your child has any other illness, please do not send them in.

You will also have heard that public examinations have been cancelled this summer which is a massive challenge for our Year 11 and Year 13 pupils, please keep them in particular, in your thoughts and prayers.

The Prime Minister has also asked schools to help parents that are key workers, please therefore contact me directly on this email address: coronavirus@farringtons.kent.sch.uk if you need help and we will do our best to support you. 

These are testing times for everyone but, I have been extremely impressed with your children’s maturity as the situation has progressed and have seen many fine examples of pupils, parents and staff members supporting each other.

I will update you again tomorrow.

With kind regards

Dorothy Nancekievill 

Head 

 

17 March 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians

The school is constantly checking the official guidance and we have certainly had more students and staff self-isolating today due to yesterday's briefing from the Government. The current guidance for Schools can be read below.  This information may of course be superseded by the Prime Minister in his daily bulletin today. 

As I mentioned in yesterday's message, please remind Senior School pupils only to bring their devices to school tomorrow. It would be an advantage if the devices that pupils bring to school for the remainder of the week, are the same devices they are familiar with at home. During Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of this week, Senior School and KS2 pupils will consolidate their understanding of the ways in which they can access and use Microsoft Teams in lessons. Microsoft Teams is the remote learning platform the school will use to provide continuity of education in the possible event of school closure.

For those students currently self-isolating, information on how to access the Teams platform will be distributed to parents at the end of the week.  If children have been sent home from school due to a persistent cough or high temperature, you must keep them at home for 14 days.

I have witnessed a good number of lessons today that have already started to use this method and it was working well. The staff are having further professional training this afternoon, although there are still some challenges, as Microsoft understandably are struggling to cope with the sudden worldwide usage of their system.

In the Junior School, due to requests from parents of pupils already self-isolating, learning packs will be sent home today with all pupils as a precaution, should the advice about schools change. Year 6 pupils, who are currently having a great time on the Isle of Wight, will receive their packs on Friday.

In both the Junior and Senior parts of the school we have decided to stop large scale activities and gatherings including daily Chapel Services, the Easter Services, the Year 5 Transition Information Evening and all concerts. The Forensic Science Workshop on Thursday has been cancelled too, as has our Governors’ Meeting.

FIZ Club will remain open for Breakfast (7.00-8.00am) and After School Care (3.20-6.30pm). Whilst it remains possible that some of our activities will be postponed or cancelled, FIZ staff will continue to offer a range of activities for the children.  Football Club and Chess Club will not run for the rest of this term.

I will keep you updated on all areas within the school on a daily basis, in the meantime, I hope that you and your families keep well.

Dorothy A Nancekievill
Head

Update on GOV.UK website: COVID-19: guidance for households with possible coronavirus infection (Time updated - 9:10pm, 16 March 2020)

Change made - Updated guidance to include information for households with a possible coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.

This guidance is intended for:

  • people with symptoms that may be caused by coronavirus, and do not require hospital treatment, who must remain at home until they are well
  • those living in households with someone who shows symptoms that may be caused by coronavirus

The main messages are:

  • if you live alone and you have symptoms of coronavirus illness (COVID-19), however mild, stay at home for 7 days from when your symptoms started
  • if you live with others and you or one of them have symptoms of coronavirus, then all household members must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the house became ill
  • it is likely that people living within a household will infect each other or be infected already. Staying at home for 14 days will greatly reduce the overall amount of infection the household could pass on to others in the community
  • for anyone in the household who starts displaying symptoms, they need to stay at home for 7 days from when the symptoms appeared, regardless of what day they are on in the original 14-day isolation period
  • if you can, move any vulnerable individuals (such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions) out of your home, to stay with friends or family for the duration of the home isolation period
  • if you cannot move vulnerable people out of your home, stay away from them as much as possible

if you have coronavirus symptoms:

  • do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital
  • you do not need to contact 111 to tell them you’re staying at home
  • testing for coronavirus is not needed if you’re staying at home
  • plan ahead and ask others for help to ensure that you can successfully stay at home and consider what can be done for vulnerable people in the household
  • ask your employer, friends and family to help you to get the things you need to stay at home
  • wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, each time using soap and water, or use hand sanitiser
  • if you feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home, or your condition gets worse, or your symptoms do not get better after 7 days, then use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service. If you do not have internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999 

16/3/2020

Dear Parents/Guardians 

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Further to my message last Friday please be assured that we are continuing to follow advice from Public Health England and the Department for Education regarding the Coronavirus. 

It feels sensible however, to make a few changes this week, 16 – 20th March as follows:

  • All Sports fixtures are cancelled
  • Parents’ Evenings will be postponed
  • The International Breakfast (Yrs 7 – 13) on Friday, 20th March is cancelled
  • Concerts and shows, including the Year 4 play will be postponed
  • Yr 3 Assembly on Friday is postponed
     

FIZ Club will continue as normal, as will regular after school activities.  The Mother's Day FPA Gift Shop will still take place in the Junior School and has moved to Tuesday, 17th March. The only reason that activities will not run, is if we do not have the relevant staff members to deliver them.  If this happens, we will inform the relevant pupils and families.

With the possibility of school closure to day pupils, our teachers are being trained to deliver lessons and activities online. Should this happen, we plan to use a Microsoft package called Teams, which some of you might be aware of through your own occupations. 

In the Junior School, teachers have put together packs of learning for children to complete should they have to stay at home. The plan would be that those packs would also be uploaded digitally, for you to access and share with your child. 

In the Senior School, on Wednesday/Thursday and Friday of this week, pupils are invited to bring in their devices (laptops/phones/tablets) to school to learn about using Microsoft Teams, please share this request with your daughters and sons.

For all Junior and Senior pupils, more detailed information will be disseminated to families should the need arise to move to online learning, but I wanted you to know that we are committed to continuing all our pupils’ education, with particular emphasis to be given to Years 11 & 13 and our boarding community.

You will be pleased to learn that our Year 6 pupils are currently having a marvellous time on the Isle of Wight and enjoying the great outdoors. Please also see information below from our School Nurse, Victoria Boyle.

Every good wish for your own health and thank you for your support in dealing with this unprecedented situation.

With kind regards


Dorothy Nancekievill
Head


A message from Sister Victoria Boyle

In the current climate it is essential that we all keep as healthy as possible, to ensure our immune systems are in optimum condition to help fight off the Corona virus if we come into contact with it and to relieve pressure on the NHS in general. With this in mind, could we please ask that you do not send your child to school if they are unwell for ANY reason. We are entering unchartered territory and need to err on the side of caution; if we think your child is not well enough to be in school, you will be asked to please collect them.

If you are unable to collect them yourself, please ensure you have alternative arrangements in place; we do not normally allow (older) children who are being sent home unwell to travel home alone.

Having fewer unwell children in school will also prevent ‘muddying the waters’ and allow us to concentrate on any children who develop symptoms which need attention.

We are following the Department of Health guidance regarding Covid 19 and keeping fully updated as the information changes.

As you are no doubt already aware the most recent DOH advice is for anyone with:

a new, continuous cough

AND/OR

a raised temperature

is to self-isolate for 7 days.

Should your daughter or son need to self-isolate, please inform the school – as this type of absence will be marked as authorised.

Thank you in advance for your cooperation.

DNancekievill@farringtons.kent.sch.uk

 

 

12/03/2020

Dear Parents / Guardians

We would like to reassure you that at this present time, no pupils or members of staff have tested positive for COVID-19.

We have been informed by a member of the Junior School staff that her husband has been advised to self-isolate as someone he works with has tested positive for Coronavirus.  NHS 111 have said that he will be tested within the next 48 hours. As a precautionary measure, we have asked the member of staff to remain at home until the test result is known.

We would like to reassure parents that we are doing our utmost to keep your children safe. We have put the following measures in place:

  • Cleaning staff are carrying out regular infection control cleans
  • All toilets and washing facilities have antibacterial soap available
  • Reception areas have antibacterial hand sanitisers available
  • All visitors to the school are required to complete a visitor declaration form
  • All staff have been informed to let us know if they have any symptoms that could be related to the virus and to contact 111 for advice
  • Junior and Senior School pupils have all attended assemblies highlighting and reinforcing the importance of frequent hand washing 

We would also respectively ask parents that if your child has any of the symptoms that could be related to the virus (see Department for Health website https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/public-health-england)  that you contact 111 for advice. If you are advised to keep your child at home please can you inform us using the following e-mail address, absence@farringtons.kent.sch.uk.

We will of course keep you advised if there are further developments.

Best wishes
Sally-Anne Eldridge
Bursar

 

01/03/2020

If you are visiting or planning a visit to Farringtons School and have been in China, Iran, specific lockdown areas in Northern Italy as designated by the Government of Italy or special care zones in South Korea as designated by the Government of the Republic of South Korea during the previous 14 days, or have been in contact with anyone who has, please could we ask that you email admissions@farringtons.kent.sch.uk or call 020 8467 0256 to rearrange your visit for a later date.