Ormiston Sandwell Community Academy

Ormiston Sandwell Community Academy

A message from the Principal  and the Principal Designate

 

Dear Parents and Guardians,

 We just wanted to write to you with a few key updates from Team OSCA in these exceptional times we are living through. I do hope you and our students are coping as well as can be expected with everything life is throwing at us at the moment. Many of you have been in touch checking in and clarifying with staff across the academy, and do continue to do so if we can assist with anything. Remember all staff email addresses are now on our website, as well as a myriad of guidance/links/leaflets/signposts for support, available both academically and for wider wellbeing issues. We know some students and parents have found aspects of the work set a bit difficult to navigate, but rest assured there is plenty available across a range of platforms, and do email in if you are experiencing any difficulties. Please do check our website on a regular basis as we do share updates and useful information to try and support you as much as we can.

 I would like to take this opportunity to publicly thank Team OSCA for their resourcefulness and resilience in trying to give as much support as possible to the young people and families in our care. I would also like to thank all our parents for the brilliant work you are doing at home keeping the show on the road on all fronts! An extra special thank you to all of our key worker parents and guardians, you have our respect and admiration for all that you are doing for our community.

 Indubitably we are living through complex and challenging times, locally, nationally and globally. However, rest assured we are in regular communication too at Senior Leadership Team, Ormiston Academies Trust, and Sandwell Local Authority level, trying to plan for the eventual return of normality, and making sure the road back there is as steady and supportive as possible. No definite ideas of course as yet, but trying to plan ahead for all eventualities with caution, and quiet optimism! 

On that note, I wanted to let you know that I have tweaked my own plans, and decided to postpone my retirement for a term. Miss Cutler will, of course, take over as Principal on the 1st September. She has already assumed the mantle of leadership brilliantly, and I am delighted our beloved OSCA will be led by her on this next stage of its journey towards outstanding. Given the extraordinary and unprecedented situation we are in though, I will now continue to work at OSCA three days per week (working across OAT the other two days, as per my original plan!) until the end of December. This will be as an OAT Executive Principal/Coach, and entail supporting SLT, staff and students in whatever way I can on the path back to our ‘excellence is standard’ normal. We know it’s a bit unusual, but Ms Cutler and I both felt exceptional times require exceptional solutions, and it just did not feel right to me to leave Team OSCA at this moment in time! 

And now over to OSCA’s outstanding Principal Designate…

 As the new Principal of OSCA I am already working hard, along with the Senior Leadership Team, Pastoral Team, Curriculum Leaders and a range of other staff on ensuring OSCA is ready to support all of our students, both academically and pastorally, when we begin to recover from this lockdown.  It will be vital we support students in re establishing relationships, getting re used to academy expectations and identify how we can support them with their learning, so we can address any gaps in knowledge and ensure continued progress. 

I am delighted that Ms McMahon has agreed to support OSCA in what will be an unusual and difficult time for us all.  This clearly demonstrates her commitment and dedication to Team OSCA and her experience will be invaluable during this transition from lock down to our new normality.

When the national decisions on school openings are made clear we will communicate with you on how OSCA will be ensuring a safe, smooth and structured return to academy life. 

Just a reminder too from me to check all of our learning and safeguarding resources on our websites. I also wanted to say a huge OSCA virtual welcome to any of our year 6 brothers and sisters coming to OSCA in year 7. Please tell them not to worry and that  we have plans in place to support their transition. 

 I wish you and your loved all the best in these difficult times and would reiterate Ms McMahon's assertion that Team OSCA is happy to help, however we can, in these difficult times, so please get in touch if you have a specific question or concern. 

 Ms McMahon and  Miss Cutler