Ormiston Sandwell Community Academy

Ormiston Sandwell Community Academy

Principal's Letter to Parents - Christmas '18

December 2018

Dear Parent/Guardian,

A couple of important updates for you, in preparation for the new term, and starting in January.

Equipment for learning

Firstly, we have become aware this term of a small but significant minority of students who do not have the basic equipment for learning we expect.  This, unfortunately, can cause low-level disruption to the smooth learning of themselves and others.  We have therefore decided to clarify for everyone our expectations on this small but critical element of preparedness of learning.  We would ask for your support in ensuring that everyone, every day, has the following

  •  A school bag
  •  A pencil case
  • 2 black or blue pens as a minimum
  • 1 red pen
  • 1 pencil
  • 1 ruler
  • 1 rubber

Ideally, it would also be beneficial if they could bring: 

  • A protractor
  • A calculator
  • A highlighter
  • A glue stick

However, these are not compulsory, especially if finance is an issue.

To support the students in keeping up to standard, we will be opening a school shop.  This will operate every break and lunch, for students to purchase any equipment they are missing.  We will of course, keep the prices as low as possible.

In order to enforce these very basic expectations, we will also be including lack of equipment now in our sanctions, if required.  This will be linked to our existing sanction structure. Specifically: 

  • Anyone who does not have their pencil case period 1 will receive a 20 minute detention during that day’s lunch time (as happens, for instance, with lates), so the consequence is immediate
  • If the student still does not have their pencil case and equipment the next day, they will be given an hour’s detention for the following day, with the appropriate notice of course
  • In the very unlikely case that this continues for a third day, students will be allocated to the next 2 hour detention, with the appropriate notice of course

I repeat that the overwhelming majority of students do comply with this already, and thank you again for your support as parents and guardians in getting them equipped.  However, as we continue on our journey to outstanding, we need to tighten up on this, and launch a zero tolerance approach, so no lesson is disrupted for avoidable reasons.  Hence this clarification, and asking for your continued support.

All of the essential items above can be bought at low cost on the high street (or from our shop), but if any parent is going to struggle financially to supply the basics, do let your child’s Assistant Head of House know, and we will support you where we can.

If you have any queries or comments on this, please email Mr Ahmed on kabir.ahmed@ormistonsandwell.org.uk .

Health and Safety at the end of the school day

If you have ever visited the academy at dismissal time, you will have noticed how busy and congested the front gate and exit can get.  It has become increasingly busy over the last few years, as we have grown in popularity and pupil numbers.  We have now reached a point where the current system of cars and students exiting at the same time, in such a confined space, is no longer tenable, and potentially dangerous.  Therefore, starting in January, and in line with many schools, the gates will be locked to all vehicles between the following periods:

Monday:                                                          3.40pm until 4.00pm
Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday:                     2.50pm until 3.10pm
Friday:                                                             1.10pm until 1.30pm

If you currently hold a pass to enter the car park to collect your child, you should already have heard from us directly.

Please plan ahead, as there will be no facility to enter or exit at these times.  We apologise in advance for any inconvenience, but must prioritise the health and safety of our students, as I am sure you will understand.

We will be informing students too in the next week or so.  Please do take this opportunity to reiterate with them the importance of taking care as they exit from both gates, as traffic is always very busy (and focussing on safety is not always uppermost in many teenagers’ minds!).

Thank you in advance for your support in keeping our students safe.

If you have any queries or comments on this, please email Mr Morgan on andrew.morgan1@ormistonsandwell.org.uk .

Please do look out for our end of term newsletter, which will be published next week, with lots of other academy news from this half term.

Best wishes,

Marie McMahon
Executive Principal