Dear Pupils, Parents and Carers,
RE: Announcement of extended period for online learning
Blwyddyn Newydd Dda, Happy New Year and a big warm welcome back to you all. Thank you all for engaging so positively with online learning over this first week of our new Spring Term, although we would rather see our wonderful pupils face to face it was still fantastic to reconnect with our MHS family over the past few days.
As many of you will have seen this morning we have now had confirmation from Welsh Government that schools in Wales will remain closed till January 29th, and virtual learning will continue for all pupils until this time. Due to this extended lockdown period we have decided to postpone the scheduled year 8 exams until later in the year.
I know that there will be mixed feelings across our school community following this news, I recently heard a phrase that accurately captured how both shared, and yet how individual, our journeys through this pandemic have been: “We are all weathering the same storm, but we are in very different boats”. With this in mind we hope that the community of Milford Haven continues to do what it does best, be kind and look out for each other in times of need.
Earlier this week we sought parent and carer feedback regarding the provision of online learning, a huge thank you to everyone that responded as your input has been invaluable in guiding our planning for the coming weeks. We really appreciate the constructive comments and suggestions that you provided us, giving us a real insight into what is working well for our pupils and families as well as areas we can improve. The huge majority of you expressed your preference for the continuation of our AOLE (Area of Learning and Experience) structured timetable, and so this is the format that we will continue with. Department timetables will continue to be shared with you via Google Classroom, WEDUC and our social media platforms. Please encourage your children to join in the live sessions, they are very beneficial and will help support and enhance your child’s progress.
We would like to remind our whole school family that we are in the midst of a national emergency situation that requires an unprecedented response. People who choose to homeschool can prepare for that situation. This has not been a choice for any of us, and like many of you we would much rather open our doors to learners and get back to normal, but we need to protect our community and so will not be able to welcome you back for face to face learning until it is safe for everyone. We are all doing our best to adapt in difficult circumstances, and our best is all anyone can ask of us.
Please don’t compare the learning in your home to that of other homes. You may be a great baker, a mechanic, an avid gardener, an accomplished musician- you will all have very different skills and knowledge to pass onto your children. Some of you may decide that your child needs to be putting pen to paper for several hours a day, while other children may be helping around the home learning life skills, whatever you choose just know that there is no right or wrong. We want learners to engage with their learning at home as much as possible, to help ensure they have access to rich learning experiences in a blended learning environment.
Your children are not just names on a register to us, we care for them over 100 hours a month, they are part of our daily lives and we miss them very much, but for now we are doing all that we can to continue to care for them from afar. If you need us, please remember that we are only ever a phone call or message away, and we vow to keep doing everything within our power to help our school community. Stay safe.
Ms CA Morris