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Well, the dreaded Covid finally got to me! After staying clear for the last couple of years, last week I did my usual morning test before travelling into Spring Brook Upper.
I was surprised to see a very thin second line. With disbelief, I repeated the test and had it confirmed.
I must admit I was very surprised – I’d not got any symptoms. I guess that’s what makes the disease so threatening – unless we regularly test, many of us don’t know we’re spreading it.
My constant worry is passing the virus onto any young person or colleague who may be particularly vulnerable.
Anyhow, I had to work from home until I got the two negative lateral flow tests.
I can update everyone on some development in our schools/organisations…
We’re hoping that we can start (another) extension at the back of New Bridge School in the next few weeks. As you will be aware, our number at New Bridge continues to grow and Alison and the team have been working hard on establishing some government money to offer the young people some extra space (both internal and external play areas).
Staying in Oldham, but moving into the town centre, we had some support from an external consultant at Springboard Project. We were delighted with his observations and his feedback will be shared with our governing body. He was particularly impressed with the community engagement pathway.
We’re hoping that in the next few days we can adapt some of our internal spaces at Spring Brook Lower to cope with the numbers of pupils we are being asked to support.
On the same theme of rising numbers, we’ll move over to Tameside. They are also continually challenged with the numbers of referrals. I’m in the process of working with Schools Week on the very issue of numbers of children in special schools. This is a national issue – not enough places to meet the demand. Not only have Pierre and the team been busy trying to think creatively about our present numbers, they are also planning for our new school. Every week they seem to be spending time with different teams. We are working to extremely tight timescales.
We’re hoping that the Samuel Laycock conversion into our Trust will take place on March 1st. This is slightly later than we would have preferred. However, I’m really looking forward to welcoming the team into our family of schools. We’re hoping to arrange some family/open meetings in the next few weeks so that we can explain our plans for the school.
The Rochdale free school is slightly behind schedule. Jenny Dunne is leading on the project and becoming frustrated with the pace!
We’ve received quite a lot of national publicity through our work with Apple. A number of the schools have showcased their work to other apple distinguished schools, and I know quite a number are also involved in a (virtual) international conference in February.
A number of the schools are assessing their assessment systems to make them more accessible to both the young people and to our families. More news to follow.
So as always its busy, busy within the Trust.
New Bridge Multi Academy Trust
Phone & Email
0161 883 2401