Return to School, 6th Sept 2021

We look forward to welcoming learners back to school on Monday 6th September 2021 (Years 7 to 12 return on Monday, Year 13 will have their induction day on Tuesday 7th September 2021) and especially look forward to meeting our new Year 7 learners and those joining Penybont 6th Form in Year 12.

Monday 6th September 2021 will have a strong focus on wellbeing and establishing positive routines for learning. Pupils are expected to be in school by 8.35am. Morning registration begins at 8.40am. On arrival pupils must go straight to their designated block where they will be met by staff:

  • Year 7 – Block 6
  • Year 8 – Block 3
  • Year 9 – Block 1, upstairs
  • Year 10 – Block 1, downstairs
  • Years 12 & 13 – Blocks 8 & 9
  • Years 7 & 8 LRC – Block 6

We would like the start of term to be a positive beginning for staff and learners, where high standards are achieved and built upon from the outset, particularly in relation to school uniform, attendance, punctuality, positive behaviour and the essential requirement that mobile phones remain switched off and kept in the learner’s school bag during lessons.

School uniform will be an expectation at all times and is non-negotiable at Pencoed Comprehensive School, as it contributes to the ethos of the school. Cooperation from parents/carers is essential in ensuring that the appearance of pupils is of a consistently high standard.

School Uniform
  • Black trousers or knee length black skirts – tight, short lycra skirts are not
    allowed. Jeans, leggings, jeggings, tracksuit bottoms, shorts or cropped trousers are also prohibited.
  • White shirt
  • Tie in one of 4 house colours (red, blue, green, yellow). Students will be allocated a house colour.
  • Black V-neck sweater with school logo – no cardigans or hoodies allowed.
  • Warm, waterproof/water-resistant outer coat – hoodies or tracksuit tops are not suitable alternatives.
  • Optional – white polo shirt with school logo – summer term only, after Easter holidays.
  • Black leather school shoes – no suede or fabric shoes. Following pupil consultation, plain black leather trainer ‘style’ shoes are now permitted.

Please note that pupils will now be using the changing facilities at school and so learners should bring their PE kit for all PE lessons to change in school.

Guidance from Welsh Government on the arrangements for the delivery of on-going learning in schools, taking account of COVID-19, is changing for the autumn term. As a school we are taking account of this guidance and on-going advice from the Local Authority by tailoring this to the context of our school.

We would be grateful, for the start of term, if you could remind pupils of the importance of maintaining regular handwashing/hand sanitising, social distancing and respiratory etiquette (Catch it, Bin it, and Kill it).

There continues to be a requirement that learners in Years 7 and above wear face coverings on school and college transport. For the start of term, learners and staff are being encouraged to wear face coverings in communal areas around the school; we understand that exemptions will apply for some learners and staff. The wearing of face coverings is currently no longer recommended in classrooms, though staff and pupils are able to continue to wear them anywhere on the school site, should they wish to do so.

Staff and pupils should not attend school if they have any of the COVID-19 cardinal symptoms or have been advised by Test Trace Protect (TTP) to self-isolate. If a staff member or pupil becomes symptomatic they should book a PCR test as soon as possible and self-isolate until the outcome of the test. If the test is negative, they can leave self-isolation and return to school.

It is likely that pupil contacts under 18 will not need to self-isolate. In addition, staff and learners over the age of 18 will not need to self-isolate if they are fully (double) vaccinated. Contact tracers will get in touch with identified close contacts and offer them PCR testing. They will also advise them on the most appropriate actions of the circumstances and for some this may include advising them to self-isolate.

Learners in secondary schools and colleges not showing symptoms are encouraged to continue to take regular rapid lateral flow tests (LFD) twice a week, and report the results online. LFD testing will continue to be offered for staff and learners at the beginning of the year; this will be kept under review as further guidance is issued to schools by Welsh Government.

Based on the WG guidance learners will no longer be in contact groups or bubbles and will now move across school to lessons. Learners should follow any one way systems established in the school, including stairs, to avoid creating “busy corridors”.

The school will provide adequate ventilation by opening windows or adjusting
ventilation systems and will establish a cleaning regime with the Local Authority team that manage our cleaning.

We would like to thank everyone across the school community for their efforts in helping us in continuing to follow these measures. We are looking forward to starting the new school year together.

Edward H Jones, Headteacher.

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