24th March 2022
I hope this update finds you well. We are definitely enjoying the sunnier weather in school and it is great to see pupils using the playground to good effect over the last week or so. We are also gearing up for our production of Annie next week and it's looking really good in final rehearsals.
We are also journeying through Lent together as a school. Fasting, Prayer and Almsgiving are the cornerstones of Lenten activities. Pupils engaged really well with our Lenten Fasting Week, and we are currently in our Prayer week. The Oasis room has been transformed into a multi-sensory prayer room and pupils have been able to sign up for slots over this week so that there is constant prayer taking place. All slots were filled for pupils within 2 days of the bookings opening up! It is an amazing space. The final week of term we are focusing on almsgiving.
We are also looking forward to our rescheduled Masses on Friday for years 8, 9 and 10 at St Edmunds Church that were planned for the final day of last half term. Sadly, Storm Eunice had other ideas!
Lockers Return for years 7-11
Thanks for all the feedback on lockers in the recent survey, and also sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. The majority wanted lockers back and so we are going to be reintroducing them for everyone that wants one. You will now find on Scopay the option to pay for the locker as we did before the pandemic. KS3 will pay a one-off £5 for a locker, years 10 and 11 have a reduced rate as they are going to be here for a shorter amount of time (sixth formers already have lockers in their common room). Once payment has been made, the site team will be in touch with your daughter with a locker key and information as to where her locker is. The lockers will not be available until after Easter but payment now will secure a locker and help us to get a sense of how many we need to re-open.
If you still have an old locker key from before the pandemic, please return it to the site team in the main office to save us having to replace them.
As part of this reintroduction and as the weather continues to improve, we will be moving back to not expecting coats on in and around school during the school day just as we did before the pandemic. This reduces further what is having to be being carried around and also improves the standard of uniform. There is space in the downstairs locker area for coats to be hung up in a communal space as we did before the pandemic, so a locker is not essential for that. We did consult parents on their thoughts on wearing PE kit to school on days when PE or fixtures were on, but parents felt, in the main, that if lockers were available this wouldn’t be so necessary. Please be aware that PE lessons are moving to being offsite after Easter, and so valuables will not be able to be taken to PE lessons. This may influence your decision as to whether you want your daughter to have a locker.
Saliva Testing Programme ending and COVID measures
We heard on Tuesday that the saliva testing programme is coming to an end earlier than anyone expected. In line with expected national changes regarding living with COVID on the 1st April, the final saliva test drop off for St Anne's will be Thursday, 31st March. Please do keep testing until then. I will be passing on my thanks to all those that have been leading this vital programme on behalf of the school community. We are told that new guidance for schools will be published to come into effect from the 1st April, but we have yet to see it. When we do, if it involves changes to the way we are working, I will let you know. I attach the latest newsletter from the programme with more information.
Case numbers remain relatively low at the school at the moment, but are rising in line with national changes. Pupils are still welcome to wear face coverings if they would like, and hand sanitiser and ventilation remain in place, as well as air cleaning units and CO2 monitors in classrooms that need them. If staff absences increase, we remain ready to move to contingency plans, including having some year groups work remotely from home on a rotation. Some schools have had to move to this in the last week or so. It will always be a last resort.
Southampton Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) Programme
There are a range of holiday activities available to families, with some families being eligible for free activities. See attached poster or go to www.southampton.gov.uk/haf for more information. Head to the bottom of the page, where you will then be able to access the registration or sign-in link to the platform. There is also a guidance document just above the registration/sign-up links of a step by step guide on how to register/sign up.
They have over 50 sites across the city with a huge range of activities on offer. Here is an idea of some of the activities accessible; A range of sports such as; skiing, sailing, kayaking, swimming, rock climbing, trampolining and multisport. Additional to this they also have art/culture workshops provided by Southampton City Cultural Services, creative arts activities with MAST, African Activities and SoundPop Academy. As well as farming activities at Southampton City Farm.
John Hansard Gallery Community Takeover Day
You may find the attached information about activities at the Gallery useful if planning weekend or Easter activities with family.
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