12th February 2021 Newsletter


Dear UTC Families,

I can hardly believe it is mid February already. It has certainly been the strangest start to any year that we have ever experienced. Rather than dwell on the frustrations of lockdown, I wanted to write to you all to celebrate everything that has been accomplished over the past 6 weeks by our amazing young people. It goes without saying, that we would not be able to continue our success without the support of all of you at home. Your constant care, feedback and encouragement enables us to reflect and adapt our provision for your child. I absolutely love receiving emails from you so please keep them coming. So in true UTC style, let’s just take a look at some highlights:

Engagement in Live Lessons

We are extremely impressed with the engagement of our students in live lessons, particularly in Years 7 and 9.They have shown great resilience for dealing with all the challenges we have had so far this academic year. In fact, we had nearly 90% engagement in live lessons alongside those students in Educare this week. It was a real joy to see students able to see their friends and bridge the gap for those on site and those at home.

Joining Google Classroom

By now, all parents and guardians should be a part of our Google Classrooms. We hope that this will provide you with an overall picture of what your young person needs to be completing each week. If you have any questions or queries regarding this process, please contact us.

KS4 Update

Despite the uncertainty of exam procedures, the majority of our Year 10 and Year 11 students have been creating portfolios of evidence in order to show that they are meeting their target grade or higher.They have developed routines and an ability to work independently. I cannot emphasise enough how important it is for KS4 to complete all of their assignments to the highest standard possible. As we know, teachers will be playing a central role in awarding students their grades. We have received some stunning pieces of work hitting grades 7 and above!

On site, our KS4 Educare students have taken on coaching responsibilities with the younger students and many are now focusing on their future with talk of apprenticeships and Sixth Form applications. Year 11 are well and truly becoming responsible, respectful young adults who continue to make us proud!

Sixth Form

Sixth Form have shown incredible resilience in these most trying of times. Their engagement in live lessons and assignment hand-in rates show how dedicated they are in ensuring that they secure the best possible routes for their futures. We are extremely thankful for our older students' support in Virtual Open Evenings too - you are true ambassadors for UTC Plymouth.

We will be looking to arrange a virtual parents evening/KS5 focus event to update you all on student progress and engagement. We will confirm the date of this event once we have feedback from the Department for Education with regards to how students are going to be graded this year, as we know this will be a very important topic to discuss with you all.

Site Clean-up DIY SOS Style

Staff and students have been seizing the opportunity of a quieter building by giving it a thorough spring clean and make-over! We can’t wait for you all to see it. There might even be the odd mural appearing around the building! Pictures will be shared after half-term.

Eco School

Students in KS3 and KS4 have taken control of our Eco-Schools project, forming a committee to develop Eco-projects across the school. Their Eco-challenges are on the Eco- School website (designed by students) which you can find here Eco challenges are focused around 3 student chosen topics: improving Biodiversity, protecting the Marine environment, and Healthy Living. Students have designed challenges to fit each of these topics and these are highlighted on the website. They would love you to get involved, so please commit to a challenge (however small) and do your part to support their activities.

We will be applying for our school Green Flag status before Easter reflecting the commitment of our students to their environment at school, and the environment in the wider world. Keep an eye on our weekly briefings for updates.

Fitness and wellbeing challenges

Across all year groups, students have been participating in the fitness and wellbeing challenges set by Lucy and Mike. Although it is cold and dark, we all know the importance of keeping fit and healthy. We have all enjoyed watching videos of our students participating in these challenges. Further to that, UTC Plymouth students participated in a giant Kahoot Quiz this week which was a lot of fun!

Additional Support

We all know that the current climate can take its toll on us. Here are some useful support networks available to us all.

Additional Support

We all know that the current climate can take its toll on us. Here are some useful support networks available to us all.

CAMHS 24/7 line 01752 435122. a high quality service to all children and young people between the ages of 5-18 who are experiencing difficulties with their mental health.

YoungMinds.

https://youngminds.org.uk/resources/ Resilience for the digital world reports may be of particular interest: https://youngminds.org.uk/resources/policy/resilience-for-the-digital-world/

UK Safer Internet Centre www.saferinternet.org.uk

Kooth online online counselling https://www.kooth.com/

Harbour offers help and support to people up to age 18 regarding substance use

Tel: 01752 434295 www.harbour.org.uk

Keeping Children Safe Online Do you know what your child is accessing? https://drive.google.com/file/d/1on15pubitM0YqeiJTQE3jub58jFC7H7i/view?usp=sharing

Virtual Parent/Student Focus Events

In the absence of being able to hold on-site parent events, we have now scheduled the following Zoom events for each Year group:

Year 11 Next Step Event: Wednesday 24th February 5-6pm

Year 10 Focus Event: Wednesday 10th March 5-6pm

Year 9 Options Event: Tuesday 23rd March 5-6pm

Year 7 Focus Event: Wednesday 24th March 5-6pm

If you wish to attend these events, please register your interest at: reception@utcplymouth.org

You can share any questions you wish us to answer as well as request any staff members that you would like to contact you regarding your child’s progress. These calls will take place during the week of the scheduled virtual event.

Finally, we would really appreciate it if you could take the time to fill out the parental survey on Ofsted’s website. We are expecting a visit soon which we are really looking forward to as we want to show off our fantastic UTC family and, hopefully, attract more funds for our expansion!

Welcome to Ofsted Parent View | Ofsted Parent View

We wish you all a restful, warm and happy half-term break.

Jo and Team UTC

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