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Please enjoy reading Mrs Tottman's Thought for the Term

Posted on: 10/07/2020

Self-CarePower in positivity


The Power of Positivity


On March 23rd lockdown measures were announced and life as we knew it changed; schools closed, businesses shut down and families and friends were kept apart.  United by these circumstances everyone had to comply with the “new normal”.  In a time filled with negativity I have sought out the positive and nowhere has this been more evident than at school.


The warmth and energy of the boys and girls accessing the RET Hub provision during those first few months of lockdown made me extremely proud. The “new normal” of mixed education, different teachers and a new school building (for the boys) was embraced with excitement and anticipation. Our young people took every day and every new development in their stride and gained in confidence as the weeks went by. By embracing the change and enjoying something different both students and staff flourished.


The challenge of home learning has been tackled head-on by students and staff alike and the determination to discover, improve and develop this way of working has been at the heart of our schools. Loom and Zoom have enabled remote connections within our community and staff have taken the opportunity to acquire additional ICT skills with some amazing outcomes.   Sharing best practice, embracing change and seeing the schools respond and evolve has been a privilege.


Term 6 saw a return to the single sex sites as we welcomed back year 10 and continued our work in the HUB.  Smiles, energy, enthusiasm and a sense of relief to be back in school and working together has made the last few weeks some of the most moving of my career.  Students have been resilient, upbeat, happy and keen to make the most of the opportunities available.  Staff are very proud of the students and cannot wait to return to their classrooms.   Evidence of care, courtesy and commitment from all involved has been uplifting.


Catherine Ponder stated that “One powerful statement of good is more powerful that 1000 negative thoughts”. Working with students from St Birinus and Didcot Girls School, their parents and teaching and support staff over the last three months has been the tonic I have needed to remain positive and uplifted in these strange times. What remarkable and brilliant things lie ahead for a community that can find such light, in a time of darkness.  I am proud to have been part of this journey and I am extremely proud of our school trust.


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