We are writing to you as part of our consultation process in relation to extending the school day. Recently, the Department for Education set the expectation that all state-funded mainstream schools must deliver a minimum length of school week of 32½ hours from September 2023 and this directive necessitates this change.

Parents will well appreciate that our school day starts early with pre-school boosters, runs late with clubs, fixtures and more exam boosters, and that those facing exams are often in on Saturdays too, but the Department for Education is interested in the set scheduled day rather than all these extras. Equally, it is not about more learning time, it is more about being on the school site. You can read more about this directive here.

Currently, our school week runs for 31 hours 40 minutes so we have to extend each day by 10 minutes. Consequently, we are running this consultation as part of the statutory process that comes with any change to a school day in a mainstream school and this means we give you the opportunity to feedback on the proposed model.

The school day will change as follows:

Firstly, the proposal includes a five minute earlier start to the day which will allow students transition time for registration and tutor time. We are a large site and this will enable students to drop belongings off at lockers and prepare for their day before arriving for tutor time. Registers will open at 8.40am and close at 8.45am so students will be marked late after this time.

Secondly, tutor time is a vital part of our day and curriculum so with this in mind we propose to extend this session by five minutes. It will better enable tutors to meet with their tutor group and prepare them for the day ahead, as well as monitor their well-being and progress in school. In addition to this, we deliver our Focus Weeks, PSHE, assemblies and more besides during this time so providing vital learning experiences for all students across the school.

The extension of tutor time allows the rest of the school day to flow with five 1 hour lessons and two breaks as does presently. The proposed extended tutor time will mean that the school day officially ends at 3.10pm in the afternoon.

Of course, there are lots of factors at play in making this change, but a key one for us is to make sure that those students who rely on public transport to get to and from school are not adversely affected. Naturally, Staffordshire School Admissions and Transport have been consulted regarding the proposed changes and we have been advised that school bus companies will be able to manage the changes.

The consultation period sees this proposed change being put to students, staff and parents.
Any parents who wish to give feedback are invited to respond via the following Microsoft Forms here.

There will also be an opportunity for parents to attend a consultation meeting on Monday 27 February at 5.30pm at the school.

The consultation will close on Wednesday 1 March and a final decision will be taken by the Governing Body on the Tuesday 14 March so that any changes can be enacted for September 2023.

Lottie Hearn, Deputy Headteacher, said: “We look forward to receiving your feedback and will continue to work hard to provide the best we can for your child amidst the ever-changing national picture that we operate within.”