Update from the Principal – The Leigh Academy is now closed

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Dear Parent/Carer

I am writing to you all at the end of an extraordinary week, having said ‘farewell for now’, to all of our students yesterday, a sad day. I want to thank you all for your support this year so far and reassure you that although we won’t be seeing you and your children on a daily basis for a while, we will stay in communication with you regularly.

As you know The Leigh Academy is now closed. This is following the direction of the government in the fight against Covid19, to protect students and staff from the greater exposure to infection in large groupings, to reduce the risk of spreading infection further to other families and vulnerable groups and to reduce social contact. It is clear from the latest medical advice, that the best way to battle the pandemic is through self-isolation, household isolation and social distancing, As such, I cannot stress enough that it is everyone’s civic duty to keep children at home during this time if at all possible.

We will be providing childminding services for children of key workers and vulnerable children. If you have completed the survey identifying your child as needing this service because you are a key worker then you will receive an email later today with the details for Monday 23rd March. This service is by invitation only. If you do not receive the email invitation then your child must NOT attend the academy on Monday. We can only offer this provision to those who match the government criteria. We can only continue to offer this provision if numbers allow for appropriate social distancing to be upheld as I do not want staff or students to be put at risk.

The Independent Learning Resources for each year group can be found on The Leigh Academy website. Students have been reminded how to use their academy email account and how to use google classrooms. I am confident that Leigh students, with your guidance, will have the maturity to work on these tasks safely in the security of their own homes and where there is less risk of infection. Further guidance for parents/carers on supporting children with learning at home will be shared with you on Monday.

For parents of children eligible for Free School Meals, we are making arrangements for this and we will update you on Monday.

For parents of children in Year 11 and Year 13 this is a particularly unsettling time, with the cancelling of public examinations this summer across the UK. I will write to you all in more depth over the next few days as the process for awarding students their grades becomes clearer. In the meantime, students should be working to complete any coursework or outstanding work which may still be required. I can assure you that we will work closely with Ofqual and the DfE to ensure that all our Year 11 and Year 13 students receive the qualifications that they deserve.

For parents of children in Year 7, 8, 9, 10 and 12, I hope that we will be back to school soon, but with the troubled times we are facing in the UK at the moment, that may not be for some time. Leigh staff will continue to support your children with their online learning and are determined to provide a meaningful remote learning experience. I ask you to remember that they too have the same concerns as the rest of the country about health and their families.

If you have any safeguarding concerns throughout the period of school closures, please contact our Designated Safeguarding Lead- Mr Lindars,

A reminder of academy contacts. If you have any queries then please phone main reception on 01322 620400, rather than College Admin office numbers, as these offices are now closed. All staff email addresses are on The Legh Academy website and if you are unsure who to direct your query to, then please email info@leighacademy.org.uk and it will be passed to the appropriate person.

I am deeply saddened by the situation we find ourselves in. Whilst we continue to work remotely to support your children’s learning, please do continue to support us with this, as we face these exceptional events and challenges together.

Stay safe and keep well.

Yours sincerely

Mrs Julia Collins