BCA re-opening update from the Principal

Dear students, parents and guardians,

I hope everyone of you is safe and well and continuing to follow the guidance on social distance at this important time in the fight against corona-virus.

The current pandemic has caused many people to reflect and change the way they work and live their lives. I having worked in education for over 25 years have never seen the education sector have to work so quickly to re-imagine education and how we deliver it. It has been like nothing I have ever experienced and I am sure the same for all of you. For me and the academy staff, education is about social interaction, making friends, sharing experiences, and having a safe space to grow and develop. It is about being part of a learning community, so not being able to see our students, learn with them, support them, has been very difficult for all the staff and we miss them.

I am sure it has also been difficult for some of you and you will be missing some of the friends you have made. I know from talking to tutors that many students have been working hard from home, completing the tasks set and joining in on group chats, well done, I am proud of you all.

Recently you will have seen lots of stories on the news about schools and colleges re-opening to year 12, the date set by the government is June 15th 2020.

I have been looking at all of the guidance sent from the Department of education and also looked at the issues specific to London. I have based on the guidance and that of Transport for London have decided that we will not open to students but continue to provide online learning for the remainder of this academic year. This was a tough decision to make, however having had conversations with teaching staff they are confident that the remaining tasks that need to be completed can be done from home and I see no reason to ask young people to unnecessarily use public transport when there might be an increased risk of infection.

We are currently moderating student work and will be submitting grades over the next week to the awarding bodies, these grades will then need to be verified before we can share them with students. Students in year 12 will be sent progression information for those moving to year 13, the second year of their course and further information about enrolment will be set out in August.

Any vulnerable students, will be contacted by student services to ensure they continue to be supported and will ensure all end of year PEP and EHCP meetings are carried out.

For our graduating students on the second year of their course, I am reviewing the situation to see we can invite you in for a day in July so we can see you, say a proper goodbye and celebrate your achievements. If this is possible tutors will contact those students nearer the time. I would personally like to ensure all second years have a progression plan in place for university, or an apprenticeship or employment, if we are unable to do that in person, tutors and the careers team will be contacting all year 13 students by phone and email to support them with their transition from the academy.

Term will officially end for students on June 26th with teaching staff working and contactable until July 17th and a return back to the academy for all staff on Monday 17th August.

I will continue to provide updates and tutors and staff are all available on email and phone to talk to if you need further support or guidance. If you have any safeguarding concerns about yourself or a young person, please contact Nick our designated safeguarding lead.

From everyone at the academy stay safe and well and we hope to see you all soon.

Best wishes

Sacha Corcoran MBE
Academy Principal 

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