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Teaching and Learning: Freedom

A brief ‘Teaching and Learning’ piece this week. Apologies for the shortness and sharpness of it, but I am ploughing my way through more paperwork than should be acceptable! (I fear the majority of the world is doing exactly the same).

I have smiled a lot watching the school grow in attendance, this week. I have loved seeing the pupils at home joining in via the screens in classrooms, communicating between the two platforms of learning. The technical pressure on the school system has limited us in many ways and improvement plans are being worked on as I write. Everyday we learn something new.  The learning curves have been steep. 

Well done remote learners and remote/onsite staff! Carry on flying the flag of quality teaching and learning from your own base camps.   We are proud of all that you are achieving.  I know some of the home learning pupils have been upset by seeing friends back at school, but the communication between the two platforms has improved as the week has gone on. 

Some parents, who have now had their children back in school for two weeks (and one parent who had only had their child back in school for one day), have asked me: ‘Why has my child suddenly got a twinkle back in their eyes?’ 

I could not answer this in the moment, as traffic was building up on the drive (stop talking, keep rolling!!!), but look at the top image to see why your child has got their twinkle back …

It is called freedom. Freedom with friends. Can you not remember being with friends in the sunshine (or pouring rain) and feeling nothing but happiness and freedom? You see, we humans are not designed to self-isolate, self-distance and be alert to an unseen enemy.  We like being together. 

Can you remember being a child and thinking that anything is possible the next day? That is the mindset we always try to give our pupils, not just during this present Covid-19 pandemic.  It is an important part of our St Peter’s Preparatory School ethos. 

If I may be as bold as to finish on what I consider a serious point, following recent the Government’s update on its expectations of schools. I might even go as far as it being a plea.  I ask that everyone now secures the community bubble, as much as is possible and reasonable. I mean all of us: the staff, pupils and parents. 

We are confident in our processes, policy and procedure; but, much of this planning relies on the whole community of St Peter’s Preparatory School also adhering to the Government guidance and rules in their family, private and working lives. We all need everyone to be ALERT as to where we are going and with whom we are mixing.  We need to avoid larger social meet ups, for a bit longer, to ensure the school is able to implement its plans and safely get all of Nursery to Year 6 children back to school, and thus parents back to work. 

Best wishes to everyone. Stay safe and be alert. Thanks in advance for protecting our St Peter’s bubble. 

Lucy Ball
Deputy Head (Teaching and Learning)