Dear Parents & Carers,
We hope you had a restful half-term and we are really pleased to welcome back all our students. We are now midway through the academic year and we take this opportunity to update you on some of the feedback that we received during the parental survey and coffee morning sessions last term and our actions towards our journey in making Strood Academy a great school. We look forward to welcoming you again this term for further coffee mornings.
Parental and Student Survey Update
The Leigh Academies Trust recently sent a survey to all parents/carers to gain feedback on how you feel we can continue to improve and support students. We were really pleased with the number of responses and the essential feedback you provided to us. Over 80% of parents felt that their child felt safe at the school and over 90% of parents were pleased with the use of Chromebooks to support their child’s learning. The survey highlighted that you thought that communication could be more timely and impactful. Following this feedback, we have spoken to all our staff to reiterate the importance of timely and effective responses to your communication with the academy. Additionally, it was identified that your understanding of how the IB middle years programme works within the academy was an area for us to improve. We will be sending you more information to help support your understanding of how this programme is assessed and transitions to KS4.
After receiving feedback from parents/carers and in light of the government now lifting restrictions we have made the decision to bring back lockers for all our students. If you would like your son / daughter to have a locker you will need to provide a refundable £5.00 deposit to secure a locker. This deposit can be paid via ParentPay and the payment item will be added to your child’s ParentPay account tomorrow. Once the deposit is paid your child’s form tutor will issue your son / daughter with the keys at our earliest convenience. Students may only use the lockers before and after school, break time and lunch. Students must not go to their lockers during lesson times. Misuse of lockers may result in them losing access to their locker.
Closure of Copperhouse Gate
As we return to the normal functioning of the school and restrictions are fully lifted, we have decided to only use the main gates to access the academy. We have made the decision to close Copperhouse Gate at the rear of the Academy. We realise this may cause you some inconvenience but to ensure the highest standards of safety all students will enter through the Main Gate on Carnation Road. This change will take effect from Monday 28 February. Please note Copperhouse Gate will remain closed after school also and students will be expected to leave the academy from the main gate only.
Mental health and Wellbeing Support for our students
We are very aware that the pandemic has hit our students hard and there have been many students who have struggled with mental health and anxiety. As part of our support for students we are currently looking to bring in a mental health provision in school with a qualified clinician through Place2Be. We aim to have this provision up and running for September, further information on this will be sent to parents/ carers in due course. We will also continue with our school counselling service for students and our strengthening minds programme which is targeted support for small groups of students who have experienced difficulty in engaging with their learning.
At Strood we recognise the importance of home learning and the potential it has to raise the outcomes of students. At KS3 knowledge organisers are used for year 7-9 which contain the core knowledge that students need to memorise for each subject. Knowledge organisers for this term have been shared with parents through parent mail, and can be found on the school website. It is expected that Years 7 -9 should complete around 30 minutes per subject each week. At KS4, homework will consist of a range of activities including self-testing on knowledge organisers and the use of online platforms such as Tassomai, Seneca and Sparx . It is expected that Year 10 and 11 students should be spending at least 30-70 minutes per subject per week. For Year 12 and 13 students homework should consist of approximately 4 hours of independent study per day as directed by class teachers.
As we move towards the GCSE and A-Level examinations we would like to take this opportunity to remind you of the intervention sessions that we are offering students. To maximise student success and outcomes at GCSE it is expected that students attend all intervention sessions.
Year 11 After-school programme
Friday Options subjects
Year 13 After-school programme
Monday Block D – Psychology, History, Art, IB Geography, Business
Tuesday Block C – Maths, Photography, English Literature, Politics, IB Maths, Financial Studies, Sports, Resit Maths
Thursday Block B – Chemistry, Sociology, IB Social & Cultural Anthropology
Friday Block A – Biology, 3D Design, Media Studies, IB Psychology, Applied Law, Applied Science
The virtual parents evening will run on Thursday 3 March for Years 12 & 13. The link to book appointments will be sent to you.
My Child at School app (MYCAS)
We very much encourage you to download the mycas app on your mobile telephones as this regularly updates on your son / daughter’s achievement and behaviour points. The app is available to download for free from app stores. The school ID is 11500 and you will need your Username and password. Please email email@example.com if you need reminding of your login credentials.
Finally, we also take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support and we look forward to working with you over the next half-term.
Strood Academy Senior Leadership Team