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Update letter to families – 23rd October

Dear Parent/Carer,

The half term has gone very fast and I am sure we are all now ready for a half term break. Students have coped with the new routines remarkably well and the adjustments to them that we have made. The current Covid scenario means we are still not able to return to normal, this is especially the case with off site visits to community settings and in whole college events. This means that the run up to Christmas this year will not include our carol concerts at the church or in college, Christmas dinners will be a small group event over a number of days and we will have to continue to ensure we are following good hand hygiene and separation procedures.

There has been lots of discussion in the media over the potential for a fire break half term lasting two weeks. Under all circumstances it is likely that special schools will be expected to remain fully open. However, I will know the details of any changes at the same time they are announced and if I need to contact you over half term I shall do so by email and text.

Remote learning:

We have sent to subject based learners over the last week a number of links to work and on line resources with the relevant passwords to use in case we do have to move into a remote learning scenario. If your young person is based in Marvel, Da Vinci or Avatar and you have not had this please check their bags!

Our website has a large home learning section on it and we will launch a new website after half term where the home learning section is better laid out and easier to follow.

Family consultation evening:

Thank you to all of you for taking part in telephone family consultation evenings. It is good to be able to share student successes with you.

Transition evening:

Normally in November we would have a transition evening for students and families in Key stage 4 and 5 to come and talk to providers and discuss their offers for post 16 , 18 and 19 education, care and training.

This will not be possible this year, however all the providers are doing on line video and on line prospectuses to help people make choices.

We are also sending links for families to these events and videos where they are being provided to us. Please make sure you are looking at these and if you want to discuss options please contact Carrie Anne Sillence (Senior teacher KS4) or Lisa Moore (Pastoral Lead for Sixth Form). It is important that time is spent looking at these and considering the future.


Please make sure that students bring a coat into college each day and this is named.

Show Racism the Red Card

I am delighted to be able to tell you that we raised £115.55 from last Friday’s charity day.  Thank you for your support.

Superheroes Race Around the World

The Oak Grove College Community are signed up to Race Around the World as part of the Superheroes Winter Wheels Challenge. Starting on 5th November and finishing on 6th December 2020, we are trying to contribute to the Super Team’s total of 40,750km.  Our Super Hero is Adam Hills and we are committed to complete at least 1,000km.  So walk, run, push, cycle, swim, skateboard, or any other exercise you fancy.  Everybody can take part: staff, governors, Friends of Oak Grove College, parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles!  Just submit your weekly mileage to cmoyle@oakgrovecollege.org.uk and at the end of challenge a prize will be awarded to the family or individual who has completed the most distance.  Get fit, keep fit and most of all have FUN!

What if a student is tested positive for Covid 19 over the holidays?

If over the half term a student tests positive for Covid 19 it is vital that you inform us. Please do this by emailing me on head@oakgrovecollege.org.uk as we must still discharge our track and trace responsibilities. Please do not wait to email us, please do it straight away.

Development work over the half term holidays:

Over the half term we will have some building work undertaken with new doors fitted in to the West and East block and some installations of new therapy equipment for students to use. A thorough clean of the college will also be undertaken.

Thank you

Thank you for your ongoing hard work, support and cooperation in what continues to be changing times and a unique situation. I would also like to thank the entire staff team who have worked tirelessly to keep all students happy, learning, focused and safe during this time. To keep groups of students separate and have split lunches and breaks means that all staff have had shorter and fewer breaks and I know you would want to thank them for all they are doing.

Final ask of the half term:

If you have a store of carrier bags you no longer need. We will happily take them off of you and use them in college!


Yours sincerely,




Phillip Potter


update letter to parents 201023 Half term

Race around the World – Superhero’s Winter Wheels Challenge



The Oak Grove Community are signed up to Race around the World as part of the Superhero’s Winter Wheels Challenge. Staring on 5th November and finishing on 6th December 2020 we are trying to contribute to the Super team’s total of 40,750km.

Our Super Hero is Adam Hills and we are committed to complete at least 1,000km, so walk, run, push, cycle, swim, skateboard, or any other exercise you fancy.

Everybody can take part, Staff, Governors, Friends of Oak Grove, Parents, Siblings, Grandparents, Aunt, Uncles just submit your weekly mileage to cmoyle@oakgrovecollege.org.uk and at the end of challenge a prize will be awarded to family, individual that has completed the most distance.

Get fit, keep fit and most of all have FUN!

Year 11 students at GB MET on Friday, 23 October

Dear Parents/ Carers,

Re: Year 11 students at GB MET on Friday, 23 October

GB MET have confirmed this morning their decision to close the Broadwater campus for face to face learning for the remainder of this week, due to the number of their staff who need to self-isolate. This includes the Friday provision for our students.

There is no specific risk to students that has been identified; this is a pre-emptive measure to ensure the right staffing numbers are maintained based on the instructions from the Track and Trace system.

Consequently, your child will not attend college on Friday (Oak Grove College or GB MET Broadwater campus). Work will be sent home for them to complete and do at home.

Transport providers have been informed.

I appreciate your support, flexibility and understanding at this time when there is uncertainty and we need to adjust what we do and how we do things to keep everyone safe. If you wish to discuss this, please feel free to contact me via email on head@oakgrovecollege.org.uk or telephone into college to speak to Carrie-Anne Sillence, Senior Teacher for KS4.

Your continued support is much appreciated.

Yours sincerely,

Phillip Potter Headteacher


to Year 11 students for GB MET 201020

SEND Benefits Advice

Please see attached flyer for information about SEND Benefits advice and associated referral form.

Robert Hayes Referral

Update to families – 9th October 2020

Please click on link below to see the latest update to families letter –
Update to families 201009

Update to Families 25th September 2020

Dear Parent/ Carer,

Sixth Form Consultation:

Thank you to families for attending the consultation meeting or contacting me to discuss the potential changes. You will all have received a letter from me outlining the current sixth form consultation that West Sussex County Council is currently leading. Please ensure you read the consultation document (which is on the website) and complete the feedback questionnaire at: www.westsussex.gov.uk/oakgrove

The consultation closes on 5th October and the Cabinet Member for Education in West Sussex, Nigel Jupp, will make a decision whether to proceed shortly after that.

Golf Umbrellas:

The end of the day routines take longer to ensure we keep groups from different parts of the college separate, and we want to avoid this taking even longer in wet weather. If anyone has any old, working golf umbrellas you no longer need please send them in with your young person. Alternatively if anyone works for a company that wants to pay for 20 of them for us, that would be really appreciated.

Swimming Pool Reopened:

The swimming pool has now reopened and is fully open for use. I am sorry that it has taken much longer than was originally planned as much more work was needed to be done. I am also able to start reopening the pool in a small way at the weekends for hiring. Last financial year we earned £77,000 from hiring facilities in college but, due to Covid 19, we have earnt nothing this financial year. We will only hire facilities when we know there are adequate control measures in place, and when it does not compromise the safety of all members of the college community.

Highdown Church:

I am delighted to be able to thank Highdown Church for a £1,000 donation to the Friends of Oak Grove College.

Visiting College:

To keep the college community safe it is important that families only come into reception if they have an appointment to meet someone. Appointments will be limited to times when there is little student movement, not at the start or end of the college day, and only if we have an appropriate room that can be used and cleaned after the appointment. Please do not just turn up to reception. If there is something we can help with please email us or telephone us.

Parents Evening in October:

Normally in October we would hold face to face parents/ carers evening with form tutors. We will not be able to do this on a face to face basis this year, and we are currently working through the way in which we can do this. It is likely to be spread over a number of sessions with remote or telephone appointments.

Covid 19:

When schools were asked to plan for a full reopening, we did so with the hope and expectations that we were moving back towards a more normal situation. That is currently not likely and further restrictions have been placed on the community. These do not apply to college, however we do need to ensure we are taking a safe and pragmatic path for all. This means that we will start doing a very limited number of off-site activities at the end of the month, but no visits will take place to supermarkets, shops or cafes.

If you drop your young person off in the morning, please keep clear the coned off part of the disabled parking spaces so that we can ensure fast and safe unloading of the minibuses. Please do not arrive before 8.45am. Please also ensure all students have tissues with them so they can ‘catch it and bin it” any sneezes or coughs.

Lost Property:

Please ensure that all students have all of their belongings labelled.

Yours sincerely

Phillip Potter


Update to families 200925

End of Week Letter – 18th September

Please find attached the latest update letter from Oak Grove College.

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COVID 19 Letter to Families

Please find attached letter that was sent to all parents via email yesterday regarding confirmed case of Covid-19

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Letter from the Headteacher – End of First Week

Dear Parent/Carer,

It has been wonderful to see almost the full college return this week and to see our community back learning and developing together.

We have been very lucky with the weather, which has helped to ensure all has gone smoothly.

There are a number of points that I would like to remind families about to ensure we can continue to make the new ways of working as smooth as possible:

  1. Anything that is coming into college for the class teams (eg personal care materials including PE kits and bags) must be labelled with the student’s first name and surname.
  2. Families doing the morning drop off should arrive at 8:45am; please do not arrive early.
  3. Families picking up at the end of the day should do so from the parent gate. And those in Avatar, Marvel and Da Vinci please do not come across to the gate until 2:55pm. Koa and Animus students will come out at 2:45pm.
  4. Parking continues to be difficult, especially as there are roadworks on The Boulevard, but please do not park in the yellow hashed areas or on the yellow lines as that snarls the whole site up quickly. We have got the end of the day routine down to 20 minutes, but it is hectic and we must keep groups of students (and staff) separate from each other.
  5. Only planned visitors can come into reception. Please do not turn up without having spoken to a member of staff first.

We are following the PHE guidance and it is important that all families have read and understood the letter about this that I sent out on Wednesday 9.1120. Following the rules on self-isolation is what keeps all members of our community safe. I appreciate this is a real challenge when it is really difficult to book a test.

Thank you to everyone for ensuring that getting back to college at the start of the academic year has been a successful, positive experience. The staff team has worked exceptionally hard to ensure we are doing things in a safe manner and I look forward to a full year of fun and learning.

Yours sincerely,

Phillip Potter


Changes to Post 16 provision at Oak Grove College

West Sussex County Council has been developing a new Education and Skills Strategy to support the inclusion of all children and young people, particularly those with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). This strategy builds on the SEND strategy for 2016-2019 and the outcomes of the 2018 Ofsted/CQC SEND Local Area inspection.

This booklet explains the proposals to change the Post 16 provision at Oak Grove College. As a community special school, the Local Authority can propose to make changes to special school provision subject to public consultation as set in statutory guidance Making Significant Changes (‘Prescribed Alterations’) To Maintained Schools for Proposers and Decision Makers Oct 2018 published by the Department for Education.  The proposal is to reduce Post 16 planned places in both Years 12 and 13 from 56 to 24 by 2025/26 but retain the overall number of places at the school of 256 by re-designating some of the sixth form for pre-16 provision.  This is in line with the current patterns of attendance.

The consultation will run until 5th October 2020 and there will the opportunity to attend two public meetings on the 22nd September at 15:30 and 19:30 where representatives from the county and school will be present to discuss this.

The online consultation can be found  https://haveyoursay.westsussex.gov.uk/strategic-planning-and-place/changes-to-post-16-provision-at-oak-grove/


Oliver Lane-Smith

(SEND School Planning Officer)

The School Organisation Team

0330 222 3105



Paper copies are available on request or can be email directed to you – please contact the college office for either of these.

FINALconsultation document OGC post16 JUN20