22 November 2020

Good afternoon,

Safe, calm, stable school environment:  Many thanks for the positive messages that I received following my video message last weekend.  A calm, well-ordered, stable environment in school is essential for staff and student mental health and wellbeing. We have had to "put our money where our mouth is" and exclude some students this week and thank you for the parent & carer support that we have received when making these difficult decisions.

501 and 504 buses:  We have been informed by Moving People, who provide our bus services, that there are re-surfacing works underway in Blackburn this coming week.  This may result in the 501 and 504 buses being slightly delayed on the way home in the afternoons.

Christmas:  It is going to be an unusual Christmas this year for all of us so we are considering which of our usual events we can hold in school in a safe way - Christmas Lunch, Christmas Jumper Day etc...  More details to follow!

ASPIRE day 1:  At this time mental health, wellbeing, careers and aspirations are particularly important so we suspended the normal timetable on Friday and devoted the day to these priorities.  It was complex, given the restrictions of the pandemic, but very worthwhile.  A news item and some photographs will follow on the website in the next few days.  ASPIRE day 2 follows before the end of term.

Presentation Evening for 2020 Leavers:  It is at this time of year that we would be gathering all our Year 11 leavers together for a wonderful evening of prizes, awards and GCSE certificates.  We know that we can't have a physical event, but we have decided to do the best that we can and hold a virtual Presentation Evening at 6.30pm on Thursday 10th December.  Invitations will be going out shortly.  We believe that we should celebrate all the great things achieved by the WLD Class of 2020!

Staff training days on Thursday and Friday this week:  Please be aware that, in line with government guidance, all staff will be at home on these 2 days so the school will be physically closed and the main school number will not be answered from Wednesday at 4pm until 8am on Monday morning.

Chair of Governors: Last year, our long-serving Chair of Governors, Mr Tony Pickup, gave notice that he was standing down as Chair.  He has given long and distinguished service to the school for many years and his wisdom, guidance and practical assistance have been invaluable behind the scenes.  Mr Pickup was due to stand down at the end of the last academic year, but offered to stay on until Christmas due to the pandemic, for which we were all very grateful.  At Christmas, however, Mr Pickup will step down.  He has kindly agreed to be Vice-Chair for a 12 month period to assist in the transition and we hope that he will remain a governor of the school for many years to come.  As planned over the last 12 months, and confirmed last week, we will have a co-chair arrangement from the start of 2021 – our new Chair(s) of Governors are Mr Tony Aspinall (Vice-Principal of Newman College) and Mrs Nicola Clayton (Vice-Principal of Blackburn College).  I am extremely grateful to them for taking on this role given their considerable professional responsibilities and I know that we will continue to benefit from their considerable educational expertise.  

Parent Governor vacancy:  Due the resignation of a long-serving parent governor we now have a vacancy for a parent governor of the school.  If you would be interested in finding out more about contributing to the school in this way, please contact Mrs Hodgson on the main school email address - head@waltonledale.lancs.sch.uk

Communications:  Please remember to register for Classcharts (email classcharts@waltonledale.lancs.sch.uk with any issues) and School Gateway to keep up to date with information from school.  If you use social media, please keep an eye on our Facebook page and Twitter feed.  There have been a small number of messages sent out this week:

  • Year 10 GCSE Sport PE Top now back open on parentpay at a cost of £18.50
  • Hothersall Lodge Trip Cancellation & Locker refunds - payments for Hothersall Lodge will be refunded shortly. Also with the restriction of movement in school at the moment lockers will not be in use so it has been decided that any lockers paid for will also be refunded. 

Have a good week....


Best wishes

James Harris


Posted by James Harris

Category: WLD Updates