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From Jon Blackwall, Deputy Headteacher

Welcome back to the summer term, albeit a very unusual one! I hope you have managed to have a good Easter break, and that you are adjusting to life under lockdown without too much trouble. It is a very strange time for us all, particularly Year 11 and Year 13, who are set to begin the next stage of their journeys. With all the changes that have taken place nationally, I wanted to write to offer you some reassurance.

It is unsettling not to have the surety of your exams; the opportunity to demonstrate and showcase the hard work and effort you have put into your learning and this is no doubt exacerbated by not knowing quite how your final grades will be awarded. From our perspective, you can rest assured that we are following all the Department of Education advice, in order to ensure we have all the knowledge and guidance we need in order to complete your Centre Assessment Grades.

There is a reason you chose to study at SGGS – our GCSE students achieve excellent results year on year, with 81% achieving grade grades 9-7; and our Sixth Form students achieve excellent results year on year, ending up in and array of high-quality destinations.  Despite the altered landscape this year, the results are set to be of an exceptional standard as in previous years.

For Year 11, whilst the formal teaching and delivery of your chosen subjects has finished, our job is now to continue to support you as you begin the next stage of your journey into SGGS Sixth Form. This is an incredibly exciting time, as you turn your attention to your chosen A-level subjects. Your teachers are working hard to prepare some fantastic transition materials for you to access as part of our Step into Sixth Form Programme. These resources will be launched on Monday 11th May, meaning you can confidently start life here in the Sixth Form in September as well-prepared as possible. If you would like to change one of your subject choices, please get in touch with Mrs Emms or for any other general Sixth Form enquiries please email Mrs Bradbury Grubb.

For Year 13, we will be supporting you until your last official day, and in some cases, beyond that. If you have applied to UCAS, Mrs Bradbury-Grubb has sent an update to assist you as you no doubt keep close tabs on UCAS and your chosen university for news. For my part, I wanted to reach out and offer some guidance on things you may like to consider over the coming weeks.

Firstly, consider the nature and content of your degree. These few weeks remain an opportunity to commit learning to your long-term memory, all of which will be very useful for your degree courses. Secondly, Review your chosen course details. Is there any guidance regarding course reading that you could/should carry out? There may be a MOOC that you could enrol onto, to help ensure you are up to speed – you certainly have the time!

Finally, if you are unsure of your next steps, we are here to help and advise you so please get in touch. If your uncertainty is subject based, email your teacher directly; if you are having a bigger rethink, get in touch with Mrs Pearson, Careers Coordinator, who will be able to talk you through your options. For general matters, please get in touch with Mrs Bradbury-Grubb.

Year 13 Results Day is on Thursday 13 August and Year 11 Results Day is on Thursday 20th August. As usual, we will be available on both days and thereafter to give you all the support you need in order to move forward with positivity and excitement.

Finally, I would like to remind you all that you possess an incredible skillset. You are strong, ambitious and adaptable. You are focused and determined and robust. Try not to worry about things that you cannot control, rather, focus on what you can. Thank you for all your work and contribution to school during your time here.  It has been a pleasure to work with you, and I look forward to seeing you again in August.

Jon Blackwall, Deputy Headteacher