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10 July 2020

I hope that you are continuing to keep well and safe during this difficult time.

It is our plan that all of our students in all of our year groups will return to DHSB full time from the beginning of the autumn term, with the exception being if there is a local lockdown being enforced by the government.

We have followed the current national guidance in devising our plans to enable our students and staff to return to school.

I will write to families before the end of term with details on how this will work so that our students can be supported in preparing for a return to school; we are working to put in place the protective measures necessary to make this work, there is nothing more than any of us wants than to get everyone back to DHSB in September.

Duke of Edinburgh's Award - Contribution of Voluntary Hours

I was delighted this week to receive a certificate of social value which details the total hours DofE participants at DHSB donated to their local community in the last financial year.

DHSB students have contributed an amazing 2,899 hours which equates to a social value of £12,610.65.

Well done to all students and staff involved.

Alan Dodd, the SW DofE Operations Officer said, “At a time when volunteering and supporting the local community could not be more important, Heather Thompson, DofE South West Director, has asked me to pass on her thanks to you, your DofE Manager, staff volunteers, and finally your incredible participants who have made, and continue to make, such a positive impact on their local community”.

Excellent Work - Mini EPQ

Mr Berryman has shared with me a mini EPQ completed by Year 8 student Archie Moore.

The mini EPQ is an extended project task, usually completed by Sixth Form students.

We set a challenge to students of key workers at the start of lockdown as an extension task to research an area of interest. Archie Moore has completed this independent study with no extra instructions or guidance. His research, investigation and presentation of the work are excellent.

Excellent Work D&T

This week we are also sharing some D&T work submitted by Ms Brown who said, “ My Year 7 groups have been working on an upcycling project this half term. I wanted them to be able to do something practical. These photographs are all examples of excellent completed projects”.

Jack Piller

Kieran Brookes

Aden Chebcheb

Rio Gocher

Oliver Bills

Coby Emond

UKMT Junior Maths Challenge

Mrs Wills has given me the results of the UKMT Junior Maths Challenge (completed during lockdown).

Very well done and congratulations to the following students.

Year 7

Thomas de Wilde 7S Gold (Best in Year)

Bailey Fry 7C Silver

Oliver Collins 7C Silver

Joseph Hibbert 7N Silver

Harry Crocker 7P Silver

Alexander Deeming 7S Bronze

Ollie Stoate 7S Bronze

Rowan Kirkpatrick 7N Bronze

Otto Malm 7S Bronze

Tristan de Rochefort-Roper 7N Bronze

Iwan Sanders 7P Bronze

Alexander Wagstaff 7S Bronze

Year 8

Eddison Chalcraft 8W Gold (Best in School)

Talha Durrani 8W Gold

Ewan Piercy 8C Gold

Henry Howell 8S Silver

Alex Knobloch 8N Bronze

Elliot Jones 8S Bronze

PSHEE Activities

Year 7 and Year 8 students have a lesson on developing positive relationships. This week we would like them to consider what makes a good friendship, and how to deal with some of the challenges that can arise. Maintaining a friendship may be even more difficult in the current situation, so it is important we think about how to focus on all the positives, and deal with any negatives. There is also a series of different scenarios to consider.

Year 9 and Year 10 students are being asked to think about film classification as cinemas are being given permission to reopen (albeit with lots of restrictions and guidance). Many of our students may have been watching more films than usual over lockdown - do you always stick to those for your age range? Do you know how the British Board of Film Classification makes their decisions?

eSafety Advice

Naturally, many times when we talk about e-safety, we focus on the negatives and often talk to our children about what not to do, concentrating on the downsides of what can happen if you post the wrong thing or the danger of posting too much information.  Of course, this is important, however being online can bring many benefits and whilst we have all heard of the horror stories of potential employees being discarded due to bad content; a thoughtful and carefully curated digital footprint that highlights your child’s skills and interests could help them stand out in a good way.

Remember it is never too late for your child to take control of their accounts online and here are some tips (taken from CEOP and parentinfo) that show how we can make our digital footprints positive. 

Think before sharing

It’s not new advice, but thinking carefully before sending or posting is one of the most important parts of looking after your digital footprint. Instead of just holding back from posting inappropriate comments, your child should think about how everything they share fits into their online persona – does it represent how they want others to see them?  Are they posting on positive platforms; did you know LinkedIn, the professional networking website has an age restriction of 13, allowing students to connect with colleges and alumni, long before they enter the workplace. 

Use the right settings

It’s best to only post things you’re happy to make public, but that doesn’t mean there should be no separation between what you share with the world and with your friends. It’s natural – and important – for your child to share some things publicly and restrict others to a smaller group of friends and family.

‘A good digital footprint should reflect the things that are important to them’

Get involved

Especially as young people get a bit older, a good digital footprint should reflect the things that are important to them. If your child is interested in writing, for example, they could start a blog to build up an online portfolio. They don’t have to accept comments or posts from people reading it if they don’t want to. And you don’t have to share your own work to make your interests part of your digital footprint – the things you like and the people you follow matter too.  Like and Follow positive content pages around the subjects that they love.

Stay on top of things

If your child is working to have a positive digital footprint they should check regularly to make sure it stays good. They can Google their name, or use tools on some social media platforms to see their activity or their profile from someone else’s perspective. 

Delete old accounts

Social media platforms go out of fashion quickly, and yesterday’s craze might be out of favour with your child today. Nothing posted online ever disappears completely, but it’s best to delete old profiles instead of leaving them unattended. 

It’s also worth reminding your child that their digital footprint isn’t just what they share, it’s what others say about them too. As a parent or carer, you might want to keep this in mind for your own posts as well. For children these days their onlife life begins with scan photos shared on social media, perhaps it is also a good time to think about how these can make your child feel now that they are forging their own profiles.

Further reading

Ms Buckler

Chromebooks for Learning

A reminder that we are renewing the Chromebooks for Learning Scheme for DHSB students. It is our vision that every student at DHSB will have access to and own a Chromebook. Our students’ daily lives are filled with technology and they are quick to embrace new developments. We want our students to feel at ease in this rapidly changing climate, and make sure they are ready for real world opportunities.

The portal is now open and the aim is for the devices to be delivered and ready for use in the first two weeks of the new term in October 2020. This is slightly later than we hoped but due to the current crisis the manufacturer has been working on a reduced production. The deadline for placing an order is 10 September 2020.

There is more information on our website at this link - Chromebooks for Learning Scheme


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