Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas To Everyone Associated With Ysgol Derwen 

This has been a year like no other and hopefully will be a one off! As a trained teacher and headteacher, having to also become a Health and Safety expert since March with the huge responsibility of trying to keep my staff, pupils and all their families safe has proved to be the most challenging period of my career. 

We have all had to make huge sacrifices this year with regards to seeing loved ones, cancelling holidays, not celebrating special events and birthdays, having to self-isolate, and for our parents, having to home educate during the first lockdown! 

I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone associated with Ysgol Derwen for your support throughout this year and also for the lovely comments we have received from some of you over the last few weeks (they really do mean a lot to us at school).  We have all worked as a community team to try to keep everyone safe and thanks to all our efforts we have managed to keep all children and staff at Ysgol Derwen Covid free up to now. We all know that the start of the New Year will be challenging with the anticipated third Covid wave following the relaxing of restrictions over the Christmas period, but hopefully there will be plenty to look forward to later in 2021. 

I would also like to say a massive thanks to all the staff at Ysgol Derwen. They have all accepted and adapted to every change I have had to impose and have done a fantastic job in keeping our pupils safe in a friendly and happy environment. This is down to the pure dedication of the teaching team who have worked tirelessly throughout the year in helping me run the school so successfully.   The children have worked so hard this term, have made great progress and are a real credit to the school and all their families.  

Please also remember that school closes for face to face teaching for the last two days of term (Thursday December 17th and Friday December 18th)  

Having to make the decision to close a school is one of the hardest a Headteacher has to make. Since September we have managed to keep the school open throughout, however you will have seen in the news that many schools have had to close part (or in some cases the whole) of the school due to confirmed cases of Covid 19 over the past term. This is likely to continue over the coming months, either with confirmed cases in the schools, or staff shortages due to waiting for test results etc.  

We have planned for this occurrence since September so that if this happens at Ysgol Derwen, the children will move smoothly into blended / home learning. All children should by now have their Hwb logins enabling them to access Google Classroom and many will have been doing their homework through Google Classroom all term. If you have lost or forgotten your child’s log in details, please contact your class teacher. Work has been uploaded to Google Classroom for the last two days of term.  The children have worked hard all term so staff as a treat had already planned fun practical lessons for the last week, such as making calendars, Christmas decorations, watching Christmas movies and completing other Christmas crafts and activities. Therefore, any ‘blended learning’ activities planned by each class may revolve around some festive fun at the end of a very challenging year for everyone. Teachers will still be working remotely on the digital platform Google Classroom between 9am and 3pm for these two days if children want to share what they’ve been doing or if parents want further support. 

Each class teacher will also be sending out a Christmas class messages on Google Classroom. 

Finally, I would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and hope that you all stay safe and healthy over the festive period. 

Take care 

R Jones 

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