28 August 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,


We have now been back at school for nearly three weeks and are about to enter into the month of September.  While the school has been very busy, and we have been undertaking a lot of work that we would otherwise have completed before the summer holiday, things have gone incredibly well.  Once again I must congratulate our young people for how well they have adapted to the change in circumstances and conducted themselves.  They are a credit to us all.  I’m grateful, as always, to yourselves for supporting us, and to all the staff at the school for the enormous amount of work they have put in to get everything right.

Over the course of this month, some things have changed due to government advice, and we have learned some things as well.  This will necessitate some changes.

Face masks
You will be aware that the Scottish Government has changed their position on face masks in schools.  As a result, from Monday 31 August, there is an expectation that all staff and pupils at Eastbank will wear face masks:
  • In the corridor as they move between lessons and to break and lunch;
  • In the concourse area (including fuel zone/canteen) before and after school, and at break and lunchtime;
  • In the toilets at break and lunchtime.
Staff and pupils will not be required to wear facemasks:
  • When in the above areas while lessons are on;
  • In lessons;
  • When outside for any reason.

Pupils should therefore ensure they bring a face mask to school and wear it as they enter the school building. Please ensure that your child is aware of the correct methodology for safely putting on, removing and storing facemasks.

If you feel there are reasons why your son/daughter might be exempt from wearing a mask please contact his/her pastoral care teacher or year head.  However, I am hopeful for your active support with this measure in order that we help keep everyone in the school safe.  It is unlikely that pupils will be required to wear masks for too long at any one time.  Please note that pupils who do not have a mask should continue to attend school.

In the community at lunchtime
In my last letter I mentioned the importance of pupils respecting physical distancing and face masks when in the locality and in local shops.  Unfortunately, we attracted some unfair and inaccurate media attention earlier this week.  However, I’m pleased to say that we have been able to publicise how well our pupils have been respecting the requirement to wear masks in Tesco this week.  This has attracted some positive attention, with which I’m delighted (see Twitter or the News section in our app).  I’m sure you will continue to discuss this at home and remind your sons/daughters to keep up this excellent work.

Public transport
I, along with all other Head Teachers, have been asked by British Transport Police to remind all members of the school community of the requirement to wear masks on public transport.

Returning from illness
Any pupil returning from a period of illness or isolation/quarantine should report to their Head of Year on the first morning back before attending lessons.

S4 Reports
Our current S4 pupils were due to receive a report before the Easter Holiday in S3.  These reports have now been collated and were issued to pupils on Wednesday 26 August 2020.  Please contact your son/daughter’s pastoral care teacher if you did not receive their report.

Unfortunately, a number of false and baseless rumours began to spread on Facebook and other social media outlets earlier this week.  This was incredibly unhelpful.  Not only did it cause un-necessary upset and worry for some parents and pupils, it created an enormous increase in workload for our staff who had to field ‘phone calls as a result. 

Please ignore any unsubstantiated rumours on Facebook.  If, at any point in the future, I have news to relay regarding COVID, I will ensure this is done clearly and directly through proper channels.  

All secondary school pupils in Glasgow will be issued with an iPad to enhance their learning experience, both in class and at home.  It is our expectation that our pupils will receive their iPad before the October holiday.

All pupils have been issued with a digital learning agreement form.  It is vital that these are returned to us before iPads are issued.  No pupil will receive an iPad until their form has been returned.

School app
We now have a fully functioning school app which will become the main mechanism for communication from school to home.  Details can be found on our school website here. Please download this app if you have not yet done so.

For your convenience our uniform requirements can be found here.

Visiting the school
Details of the protocol involved were covered in a previous letter, available here.

Once again, I thank you for your on-going support, and wish you a pleasant weekend.

Yours faithfully,

Jonathan Graham
Head Teacher