All posts by jgourlay

Update 24 March 2020

SQA Update 4.15pm Tuesday 24th March 2020

Please see the latest update from the SQA https://www.sqa.org.uk/sqa/93658.html

Higher and Advanced Higher Coursework is no longer required to be submitted.  If students have completed coursework, this can be used as part of their evidence which teachers can draw upon.

We are still awaiting further guidance from the SQA on estimates.   Any SQA queries should be sent to mailto:dgssqaconcerns@dunbargrammar.elcschool.org.uk

Dear DGS Community

I hope you are all well and are starting to settle into a new routine.  These are highly unusual times we find ourselves in, but I wanted to write to you all to reassure you that Dunbar Grammar School may have had to close its physical doors, but our digital ones are certainly open!  In this update I would like to cover several areas, which I know you may have questions around.  We pride ourselves on being a caring community which supports everyone to RISE to be their best.  In these uncertain and challenging times, this is especially important.

Learning at Home for Students in S1 to S3

All class teachers are posting tasks on Show My Homework.  I realise yesterday (23rd March) the platform had some IT issues, but my understanding is that these have been rectified.  We have selected to use this platform as it offers parents/carers the opportunity to have an overview of work set.  In some cases, teachers may be posting links to Google classroom, however we still ask them to indicate this on Show my Homework to maintain the parent/carer overview.

I know some parents and carers may be feeling overwhelmed with supporting their young person with the array of tasks being set from different teachers. I  would like to reassure parents and carers that this is a marathon and not a sprint! We have no idea of timescales and it is important that each family finds a schedule which works for them.  Relaxation, exercise and family time are crucially important and this must be balanced with school work.

To help support this, Mr Maxton has put together a suggested timetable for S1/2/3 students which they can use as a guide for how long to be spending on different subject areas. This can be found here: BGE Suggested Timetable. This is merely a suggestion, but we realise having a formal structure may help some students. As a Leadership Team we will also be maintaining an overview of work posted to ensure as a school, we have a good balance.

If you have any feedback on this, please just contact us on admin@dunbargrammar.elcschool.org.uk.

Learning at Home for Senior Phase Students

At this stage we are still awaiting further Guidance from the SQA.  In the meantime, teachers are setting work on Google Classroom for all senior students to complete.  As I said on Friday, this will help add to the bank of evidence teachers have for each student.

As soon as I have an update from the SQA, I will share this with you.  In the meantime, if you have any SQA related queries, please send them to dgssqaconcerns@dunbargrammar.elcschool.org.uk and Mr McBride (DHT with SQA responsibility) will get back to you.

Student Support

Student wellbeing is always at the centre of all we do and the Pupil Support Team are here to support you during this unusual and difficult time.

You can get in touch with us in the following ways:

Wellbeing Concerns

Parents/carers can email dgspupilsupport@dunbargrammar.elcschool.org.uk. This mailbox is CONFIDENTIAL and looked after by Mrs. McIntosh and Mr. Offer.

Guidance teachers will be on hand to get back in touch with you during normal school hours. Please note, emails will not be checked or responded to beyond these times, e.g. evenings or weekends.

In line with the school’s safeguarding and Child Protection guidelines there may be times where information that is communicated online, or in person, may need to be shared with others.

If there is a significant concern that someone is at risk of harm then this information must be shared.

Information may be shared with:

  • Other school staff including the Senior Leadership Team
  • Parents / Carers
  • Other organisations such as Health, Social Work or the Police.

Learning concerns

Here is some useful information from our Educational Psychologist service:

Rescheduling Trips and Events

We are planning on rescheduling our planned trips  which include

  • The Battlefields (S3)
  • Germany (S1)
  • California (S5/6)
  • Duke of Edinburgh Expeditions

We would kindly ask for your patience whilst we await further Foreign Office advice over the coming weeks and liaise with our Tour Operators/travel providers to identify alternative dates.

We will also be working closely with the S6 Leadership Team to identify a rescheduled date for Prom.

There are incredibly challenging times, but I have been humbled by the kindness and care of our entire school and wider community.  We will continue to work together in the Dunbar way to ensure that we look after each other.  I will continue to share insights into the (remote) working life of the school via Twitter and I will also be sending out a comprehensive Friday email.

Take care of yourselves and each other,

Claire Slowther, Head Teacher