Heads Up 3 July 2020


Ian BuddDear colleagues,

Hello and welcome to another Heads Up, and another week closer to the end of term.

It’s usually at this point in the year that we start to reflect and look back at the achievements of the past 12 months. They may not have been written into anyone’s development plans, however the changes that have been made over recent months to allow the continuation of education in Warwickshire has been nothing short of remarkable. Adaptations to the work and learning environments to allow children of key workers and vulnerable children to remain in school, as well as adaptations to distance learning have demonstrated real creative thinking and dedication from staff.

The wider opening of primary and secondary schools has gone ahead without any issues and we are hugely grateful for your efforts in making this a success.

We know this will probably have been the toughest term that you, as school leaders, and your staff will have experienced during your careers in education, but perhaps you’ll take a moment over the next couple weeks to give yourselves some well-deserved credit for the fantastic work you and your teams have put in over recent months to keep so many of our schools open. Something Warwickshire should be very proud of.

Despite a fair amount of reflection and lots of thanks to colleagues for working so tirelessly over recent months, as we head towards the holidays we are also turning our focus to planning ahead for the summer and the autumn term. Last week we shared with you what we are doing to support Year 6 pupils making the transition to secondary in September with a video (soon to be released) and social media messages being shared across Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.

We are also pleased that we are now at the point where private, voluntary and independent early years providers will be back on-stream and operational in the run up to summer.

LA support services will be thinking about how best to support children and young people during the holidays giving them an opportunity to access social, sporting and arts activities through the voluntary endeavours of partner organisations, clubs and societies, who will all be working within national and local guidelines to deliver these experiences safely. We will be signposting this summer offer for families and for communities, giving lots of encouragement and support for the clubs and societies who will be making this provision, which is so important in terms of mental health and wellbeing for the children and young people who have been isolated for the past three months.

From September onwards, we are expecting all children to be back in school and as you will know from the daily briefing we are here to support you with your risk assessments and planning to ensure that we can meet this expectation safely. Alongside this, we are looking at developing a tutoring offer and support in terms of literacy and cultural experiences to ensure our most vulnerable learners are supported to catch up on the curriculum time that has been missed.

We will continue with the daily briefings to keep you updated on everything you need to know in relation to the current situation, and Heads Up will be here for another couple of weeks until the end of term providing the latest ‘business-as-usual’ information. So, until next week, I’ll just sign off with my usual reminder to try and switch off the laptops, and emails, and to fit in some downtime over the weekend if you can.

Best wishes

Ian Budd

Assistant Director for Education Services 

With best wishes, 

Ian Budd

Assistant Director for Education Services