QE Update
APRIL 2020
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Front of School
Letter from the Headmaster
Dear Parents and Boys

I firstly want to thank the many parents who have sent in messages of support and gratitude to the School during this extraordinary time. My colleagues and I are finding these most sustaining. I appreciate that a great number of parents also now find themselves very much on the frontline with respect to the boys’ work and I thank you for the help, in its many guises, that you are inevitably providing them with.

My thanks also go to the boys, for digging deep in these difficult circumstances and adapting to different ways of working. The work you are doing now will contribute very directly to your future success. This applies to the classwork being set by your teachers and the many enrichment opportunities available to you for extension or for fun. I especially appreciate your openness in the bespoke tutorial process; it is helpful for you to share the challenges you are presently facing as the School develops its own methods of support. I would encourage all boys to engage fully in this process, so that our pastoral team can best support you as individuals in the way we would when we are physically in School. Further details about online bespoke tutorials from Deputy Head (Pastoral) David Ryan are featured in this edition of QE Update.

Continued commitment is essential as we still do not know for how long the present situation will last. Abundant speculation has been taking place in the media regarding the re-opening of schools, yet, at the point of writing, there has been no change in Government policy. As soon as this changes, rest assured that we will be looking to implement the new arrangements as swiftly and efficiently as possible, whilst following all relevant guidelines to protect everyone’s health.

Until this happens, we will continue to maintain our full focus on making the maximum impact on our pupils through remote learning. We retain our highest aspirations for all the boys and are striving to do all we can to support them both academically and in terms of their personal wellbeing. To achieve this, senior colleagues and I have been drawing upon a huge range of research and advice as we think carefully about what can be best applied to the particular context of our School. It is our clear aim that we continue to enhance the eQE experience as long as the situation lasts, recognising that, whilst we all become more familiar at navigating some aspects of life under lockdown, many may find it an increasingly difficult period. To aid this ongoing planning we are collaborating with schools across the state and independent sectors, whilst benefiting from the experiences of schools internationally that entered lockdown long before the UK did. The item from our Deputy Head (Academic), Anne Macdonald, sets out just a few ways in which remote learning is being developed.

There is much work going on across all departments to review and enhance the offer and we also hear from Sarah Westcott and Emily Parry on how remote learning is being developed in the context of Science and Geography in particular. The Music department is working similarly hard on expanding performance music opportunities and they invite us all to join together each Friday to listen to online Lunchtime Concerts through YouTube Premieres. In time, we hope these will include contributions from our new virtual orchestra and virtual choir, who are rehearsing and recording in their respective homes.

This edition of QE Update also contains important guidance for our current Year 11 about the work being done to help them bridge the gap to Sixth Form study, together with more news of how Lower School boys have been spending their time profitably in this period. I have been very impressed to hear of boys learning new skills, investigating new topics, and giving their time in service to others from home or by volunteering in their communities.

I hope you find these various items useful as we press on with providing the best possible educational experience during lockdown. I would encourage all boys to remember the Six Ss for a successful Summer Term as well as a seventh, which has long been the advice given to those about to join QE, and that is to get ‘stuck in’ to all that there is on offer, as fully as you can.

With my very best wishes to all families,
Enright Signature
Mr Neil Enright
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Developing remote learning

Deputy Head (Academic) Anne Macdonald explains the principles underpinning remote learning at the School and how these are being applied progressively, as the educational experience evolves and new methods and resources are integrated into eQE.

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Explaining bespoke online tutorials

David Ryan, Deputy Head (Pastoral) sets out how bespoke online tutorials are being used to maintain the School’s pastoral support for boys in these difficult times.

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Having problems? Here’s how to get help

Pupils experiencing problems using the School’s eQE remote learning platform may contact us on the link below.

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Getting ahead of the game: preparing Year 11 for their A-level studies

A major component of QE’s remote learning study programme has been specially tailored for Year 11 to provide a bridge so that boys can cross over successfully into their A-level studies.

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Departmental snapshots: Science and Geography

Heads of Department provide a quick summary of news and innovative developments during lockdown.

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Learning in lockdown: no hindrance to progress

As the Summer Term gets into its stride, some Lower School boys have been reflecting on their remote learning experiences.

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Online Music concerts begin this week, as QE Virtual Orchestra and Virtual Choir are launched

A new series of virtual lunchtime concerts begins with a special double bill this Friday using YouTube’s Premiere facility. The concerts will initially feature material recorded earlier in the year, but the Friday 15th May concert will see the inaugural performances of the new QE Virtual Orchestra and QE Virtual Choir, which have both now been launched.

Tomorrow’s concert series launch features Year 10’s GCSE Music performances at 1pm, followed by overall GCSE Music performance highlights by Year 11 at 4pm. On every subsequent term-time Friday this term, one concert will be shown, broadcasting at 1pm as a premiere on the Music department’s YouTube channel.

For the Virtual Orchestra and Virtual Choir concerts, boys are contributing MP3 recordings from home, which will then be mixed to create the Virtual Orchestra and Virtual Choir performances. Both ensembles need plenty of musicians to be a success and it is not too late for any boys who still wish to take part: go to the Music department’s School Closure Enrichment page on eQE for full instructions.

Virtual concert programme, May – July 2020
Our Six Ss for a Successful Summer Term Graphic
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