16 Oct 2020

16 October 2020

Jockey Club Sarah Roe School’s latest newsletter is available to read now. Find out the latest news around the school and upcoming events.

Principal’s Message
Support of Students’ Health and Wellbeing
Government Student Grant 2020/21

Principal’s Message

Dear Parents,

As we come to the end of our third full week at school I want to thank all parents for their hugely important role in supporting our school in staying open. In these challenging times we all have responsibility for keeping our school community safe. Thank you for recording your child’s temperature every morning and for not sending them to school when they are not feeling well. If students develop COVID19 symptoms while at school they will have to be collected by parents as soon as possible. While they are waiting to be collected they will be isolated from others in the medical room.

This week teachers and therapists are drafting new IEPs for all students. IEPs will be shared with you on 2nd of November via Gateway. IEP meetings with parents will take place on Tues 3rd Nov and Thurs 5th Nov 3.00-6.00pm via Zoom.

Distance Learning – Parent Survey Feedback

SurveyI would like to thank all parents for taking part in the Distance Learning Survey. Your feedback will allow us to reflect on the provision that we offer to students and improve it further.

Comments regarding aspects of the feedback:
You can view the results of the survey and comments here.

Unsurprisingly, there were very mixed responses to the survey with some parents agreeing with the statements but also some disagreeing. Overall, 70% of parents expressed their approval of school plans and systems.

  • 60% of the parents said that their child has been making progress in their learning. It is a very similar result to our last survey in June 2020 (63%). We all agree that distance learning is not the optimal way of delivering learning to our students and that their progress will be significantly impacted by this mode of teaching. Your comments reflect what we know: that our students require your support to engage with learning. This is why on our return to school we have planned for students to be back to school for the whole day. We are very pleased that our proposal was approved by the EDB.
  • 72% of parents think their child has found learning appropriately challenging. It is an increase from the previous survey (60%). However, in your comments you have stated that some subjects could be better differentiated.
  • 67% of parents said that their child has found the learning engaging. It is a slight increase from the last survey (59%). All comments referred to Zoom sessions and how much the students enjoyed interacting with their teachers.
  • 61% of parents said that their child has received useful feedback that has helped them to make progress. It is a decrease from 72%. We acknowledge that this is an area that we have to continue improving on.
  • 55% of parents said their child has usually been able to manage the amount of learning set. This is a decrease of 13% when compared to our June survey. In your comments you reaffirm what we know that learning at home would not take place if it was not for your support.
  • 88% of parents think the school digital systems and processes supported their child’s learning. It is an increase from 72% in June 2020.
  • 83% of you said that you have received all the information you needed in order to support learning.
  • 78% of parents think the communication between school and parents has been effective and timely which is the same as during your feedback in June 2020 (79%). We hope that it will be improved as time goes on.

What we plan to do going forward if we need to go back to distance learning:

  • We will ensure that a number of live Zoom lessons with class teachers supports the delivery of curriculum learning intentions, ILS and students work towards accreditation. Number and content of live lessons/sessions and home facilitated learning will be based on the needs of students in each class.
  • We will make sure all lessons and therapy sessions are labeled with learning intentions and/or purpose and/or skill for each task and that the content of lessons is appropriately differentiated. If the learning is not appropriately challenging teachers need to hear from parents so that they can increase the challenge for children. We will act on feedback received from some parents but please make sure that you get in touch with your class teacher if you think further improvement is needed.
  • We will clarify our expectations on teacher feedback and what marking can look like in distance learning. We are working on developing more efficient platforms for sharing planning and learning resources and for students to upload their work so it can be checked and marked by teachers.
  • We are sharing information on support that is available to families with students with SEN to support their wellbeing (see below). In collaboration with the PTA we are planning some school led initiatives to support students’ wellbeing so please watch this space.
  • We want to continue improving communication between home and school. We need your support and involvement in shaping this agenda and we will want to find out from you what is working well and what we can be better at. We have addressed some of the technical issues parents had with the ESF App as we know some of you were not receiving our messages. We are working with the ESF team to further develop the app and to provide targeted support to our staff and parents.

Once again, thank you for shaping the school provision with us. Your voice matters and together we will ensure success for every child at JCSRS.

Mid Autumn at JCSRS

Please watch this video, which was shared with the whole school community during last Friday’s Assembly, to see how our students celebrated Mid Autumn Festival.

I wish you all a very restful and happy mid term break.

Kind regards,

Anna Smakowska


What’s new in RSE?

In recent weeks students have been learning the concepts Public and Private as part of our staying safe focus in the current unit ‘Knowing Me, Knowing You’. Your child’s engagement with an RSE curriculum is based on a combination of age and developmental stage, therefore the complexity of engagement with course content will vary accordingly. Please reach out to your son/daughter’s classroom teacher if you would like further guidance on suitable access points. JCSRS staff and students engage with the RSE curriculum as a whole school approach, starting from our youngest learners in Pearl Class up to our post 16 Jade class students. Please refer to these simple yet effective ways for you to support at home.

Ways to help at home:

  • Reinforce public and private by displaying visuals (attached below) in your home.
  • Compliment your discussion by using the signs of ‘private’ and ‘public’.
  • Refer to the language of public and private frequently. Pose appropriately pitched questions at your child’s level by providing relevant examples e.g. playing with iPad, bathing, eating breakfast with family/alone, followed by a simple question: Is it public or private? Talk to your child’s teacher if you would like more advice on this. For AAC users, provide choice for yes/no responses or open-ended questions. Tell me a place that is public? Tell me a place that is private?
  • In supporting learning covered so far, your child’s bedroom is considered private. (for students sharing bedrooms, this means when your son/daughter is alone in the bedroom)
  • When doors are closed your family bathroom is private.
  • All shared living spaces are public.
  • Knock on the door before entering your child’s bedroom/bathroom and verbalise your presence to indicate that you are entering their private space.
  • Close bathroom doors when in use to represent and respect the users privacy. If you can support this at home it will help with generalisation of learning to new environments.
  • Provide opportunities for independence and privacy when showering and changing where appropriate.

Discuss these concepts with your child using the consistent language of these key terms.

Signs to support:

public sign private sign
Right-click on an image and choose “Save image as…” to download it to print and use at home

New Pedagogies for Deep Learning (NPDL)

NPDLDuring Distance Learning, students from Sapphire class accepted the whole school challenge to find a suitable beneficiary to donate the proceeds raised at the JCSRS walkathon. In taking on the challenge, the students worked in partnership with their families to research and produce individual mind maps focusing on an assigned HK charity. Later in small groups on zoom, students worked together to collaborate and join shared ideas into one collective piece of work. The outcomes of this shared work were then presented to the wider JCSRS for feedback. Every student at JCSRS was invited to vote on their preferred charity from a selection of three student developed mind maps. Student responses were scored, collated and shared digitally during an online whole school assembly. During a class zoom, Sapphire students leveraged digital to create a class email to their winning charity with news of their donation.

This example of students engaging in authentic and contextual learning experiences is a great example of Deep Learning at JCSRS. The outcomes of Sapphire’s work has resulted in IMPACT HK being presented with a cheque of $7449. Congratulations to Sandra, Sydney, Annie and Sapphire class students for engaging all members of the JCSRS community in this deep learning experience.

ImpactHK cheque

Support of Students’ Health and Wellbeing

At JCSRS We believe in developing happy and healthy people who enjoy school, are aware of their own wellbeing needs and have strategies to meet them. Wellbeing, health and learning cannot be separated; one supports the other. We have many systems and practices in place to promote positive wellbeing. Some of the ways we do this include:

  • A varied curriculum which promotes wellbeing; focus on developing students mobility and physical wellbeing
  • Events throughout the year to highlight and focus the community on different aspects of wellbeing
  • Wellbeing monitoring
  • Positive Behaviour for Learning Strategies including High 5
  • Emotional and Social Wellbeing IEP targets
  • Highly skilled staff that receive regular specialist training to develop their knowledge and skills
  • Team of therapists
  • School nurse
  • Access to an Educational Psychologist, who can provide consultation support with regard to mental health and wellbeing. This would usually take a whole school, preventative approach, such as through training to raise awareness, building staff confidence and sharing strategies around a particular topic, such as self-injury. It might also take an individual consultative approach and/or supervision to support school leaders, teacher and therapist to support the student.

You can find further information on how we support students’ wellbeing and links to useful services and resources at Life at JCSRS > Student Health & Wellbeing > Resources and Useful Information tab on our school website. The list of private providers in HK is not a recommendation, but it was compiled to help parents understand what is available.

We would also like to draw your attention to a livestream event organised by YAMA Foundation that will be relevant to many families. The purpose of the conference and the follow up inclusive workshops is to enhance the wellbeing of communities with disabilities and special needs. For more information, please visit: YAMA Foundation’s YouTube channel offers free classes and resources for people with disabilities and special needs.

Government Student Grant 2020/21

The application form for the government’s Student Grant had been sent home last week. Please refer to this guide here for more information.

You would have received an application form last week; please complete it and return it to your class teacher or the school office. If you did not receive a form, you can contact us to have it sent or download a blank form from the EDB’s website.

The deadline for submitting is Friday 30th October 2020.