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Preparing your child for the present and beyond
18th March 2020
At the High School of Dundee, we’ve been working hard to give our pupils the best school experience during these unprecedented times.
Our focus is on enabling every pupil to achieve their full potential. Our Integrated Curriculum therefore brings together the academic, the co-curricular and pupil health and wellbeing to provide a coordinated, genuine all-round education with the pupil at the heart.
Our vision remains the same in 2020/21, but we realise this year more than ever we need to be flexible and agile; we’re ready to provide the best possible online learning and teaching if schools were to close again and you can find out more about the arrangements which we had in place during lockdown below.
For details of our Return to School plans for August 2020, which allow us to implement physical distancing, adopt enhanced safety and hygiene measures, and respond to a range of different scenarios, please click here.
Online learning and teaching - what we had in place during lockdown
Just as if you were in the School itself, a timetable of lessons is in place with most of them delivered live using Microsoft Teams. For example, last week more than 600 live lessons took place in the Senior Years and around 150 in Junior Years. Our teachers are also creating pre-recorded lessons and continuously uploading resources to our Virtual Learning Environment.
Our Learning Skills Team continues to provide timetabled support. Our Junior Years teachers have devised activities which ensure that pupils stay engaged with one another and have a chance to work and play alongside their friends virtually, whilst our Senior Years Guidance Teachers meet their groups online every week and continue to provide one to one pastoral support.
We have also been running a Care Hub at Mayfield to allow the children of key workers to be looked after.
Building essential skills
Now more than ever, we want to be sure that we’re also building skills in creativity, resilience and confidence so that our pupils are able to adapt to our ever-changing world and take responsibility for their own learning in the widest sense. We are providing as many co-curricular activities as we can. As well as taking part in Sport and Cookery weekly challenges, our pupils have been creating wellbeing podcasts, producing their own lockdown newsletter and much much more. PE lessons and music tuition are also taking place online.
A flexible future
What we’ve put in place has been in response to COVID-19, but we think it’s also a crucial part of our future.
We’re working hard on our plans for returning to school and nursery. We don’t have a crystal ball to allow us to see how the pandemic will progress, but we know that we’ll need to be flexible and agile. Our remote learning programme allows us to do that, ensuring that our pupils can continue with high quality education regardless of where they are learning.
Wellbeing and our values
Rector Lise Hudson says, “The wellbeing of our pupils is always our number 1 priority, and is something we have worked hard to protect and safeguard during lockdown; listening to our pupils concerns and feedback and responding to their needs.
“We are a community that works to support each other and and kindness is at the heart of all that we do. As we move towards a reopening we have learnt how precious our shared humanity is and the power that we have to change the world for the better through our individual and collective actions.”
Around 20% of families receive bursary support. Many of our families have been affected financially by the COVID-19 crisis, but our mission is to ensure that no child leaves the School due to financial reasons. We are working hard to support all our families; we’ve put in place variations to help those who need it and our fees are frozen for the forthcoming year.
You can still join us during lockdown
Here at HSD we have children joining us all year round and even during lockdown. In fact we’ve had new pupils joining the School within the last few weeks.
“My son has been very happy with the process so far. There is a good quantity of information/resources available for him. The online classes where there is real interactive teaching makes a big difference in enabling him to feel some confidence in the process of settling into a new school. To meet the teachers and to have some very basic interaction has been helpful for him to begin to feel a part of the school. Thanks to everyone for being so welcoming”.
Parent of a pupil who has recently joined the school
Our Admissions team is ready to answer your questions, give you a flavour of life at the School and to arrange meetings with key members of teaching staff.
If you’d like to find out more about joining the school, please contact email@example.com