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Head of School’s End of Year Message

16 July 2020  |  G Denison

We’ve made it to the end of the most extraordinary school term any of us have ever experienced. When we came back to school in September 2019, who could possibly have thought that the academic year would end like this. As a school and as individuals we have all faced unprecedented challenges and have had to adapt and learn to live our lives in completely different ways. We have suffered sadness, tragedy and loss but, amongst all this, we have also seen the very best in people. I really believe that we, as a school, will come through this time as a stronger, better, more cohesive community.

I want to take this opportunity to thank all of our students for the way they have coped with the pressures of the past few months. Having to adjust, almost overnight, to learning from home isn’t something anyone ever envisaged happening. I also want to thank our parents and carers who have had to take on home-schooling duties alongside all the other challenges that the lockdown period has brought. Additionally, I want to extend a huge thank you to all of the staff at Northallerton School and Sixth Form College for their work during this period. Many staff have been in school regularly over the past few months – whether it’s the site team ensuring the buildings are safe, the cleaning staff increasing the levels of hygiene or the admin team keeping the day-to-day business of the school running – everyone has played their part. We have had teachers having to learn whole new sets of skills to deliver lessons remotely as well as those, along with teaching assistants, who have ensured vulnerable students and children of key workers are taught in a safe environment on site. Additionally, a large team of staff have been working tirelessly behind the scenes dealing with an ever-changing situation to ensure that we are doing the best we can for our young people.

It’s now time to look forward as life slowly returns back to some kind of normal. We will begin the next school year with our staff and students where they belong – at school, together in accordance with the current governmental guidance. For our Year 11 students, no-one could ever have predicted that the years would end with no exams and a very different farewell. We’re so pleased that so many of you are choosing to come and join us for sixth form study and we wish all those who are going on to the next stage of their lives elsewhere all the best. We also send our Year 13 students into the adult world with all our best wishes – whether it’s to university, further study or work I hope you all flourish and become the young adults you’re capable of being. And, remember, your school will always be here if you need help, advice or a friendly voice to talk to.

Throughout the summer, we’ll still be working hard to ensure the return to school in September goes smoothly. Information about our plans for September will be shared in a separate letter this week.

Take care everyone, and we’ll see you soon.

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