Week 5: ‘Safety isn’t expensive; it’s priceless’- Jerry Smith

A lot of our students travel to school by bike. Whilst this is really good- we need to be encouraging children to be more active- it is equally important that they are safe. I’d be grateful if you would click on the link below and discuss with your child.


in particular, I am concerned that too many students are not wearing cycle helmets on the way to and from school. Years ago, at another school, a member of the senior leadership team led an assembly on road safety. He took an egg, put it into a polystyrene ‘helmet’ and threw it (very dramatically) against the wall of the hall we were in. All of the children (and one future Hamble headteacher) gasped in anticipation of the very messy splat that they were sure was going to happen, only to gasp in wonder when he calmly picked it up, took the ‘helmet’ off and showed them that the egg was okay. Although he didn’t then throw an egg at a wall, his point was clear: helmets save lives. Please reinforce the importance of wearing a helmet with your child if they are cycling into school- it’s so important that they keep themselves safe.

On another travel-related note, I would like to ask for the cooperation of any parent who picks their child up by car and uses the Hamble Sports Complex car park. This car park is not owned by the school- it is part of the Hamble Sports Complex and, as such, is run by SLM. SLM have reported to us that parents/ carers are not parking in the marked bays, are sometimes using the disabled spaces, and are also driving against the one-way system to get out of the car park. I know parking is a real issue in Hamble generally and there is no easy solution to this but I would ask you to be considerate to the Sports Complex users by using the right parking bays. Ultimately, the Sports Complex would be within their rights to close the car park to school users and this would cause even more parking problems. My team and I will be in the car park over the next two weeks (in high-vis jackets) to try to resolve this issue because I don’t want to be in the position where you can no longer use this car park for school pick-ups.

Back in school, we had our very first Meet the Tutor evening for Year 7 parents last night and it generally went very well. We’ve purchased some software that not only schedules the appointments but also moves parents/carers from appointment to appointment- this will prove particularly useful when we use it to run parents’ evenings. Unfortunately, the company had a technical problem and their server went down for approximately 15 minutes. They have apologized profusely for the inconvenience to those parents/ carers and have promised that these issues will not reoccur. Whilst this is inevitable during these virtual times (I’ve been kicked out of a few Zoom and MS Teams meetings over the past 6 months), it must have been frustrating to the parents/carers unable to speak to tutors last night. I promise we will be in touch (if we haven’t already).

I’ve managed to make it almost to the end of this without mentioning coronavirus but I just need to mention a few things. Firstly, I just want to remind you that if we do have a case of coronavirus we will contact all of you to let you know that this has happened. There is a list of actions we will have to do, including identifying anyone who was in close-contact with the person tested positive but writing to parents/carers is on that list of actions. A few parents have asked over the last two weeks if we have had any positive cases. We haven’t and if/when we do, we will definitely let you know. If you are unsure of what to do, if you, your child, or a family member has symptoms of coronavirus (a high temperature; a new persistent cough; the loss of the sense of taste or smell) please use this sheet, which was sent through to me this week:

When to send your child to school

FACTSHEET: When to send your child to school
Download (PDF)

Have a good weekend.