• The Ilfracombe Academy

Letter from the Headteacher - Here Comes The Sun

Dear Parents and Carers,

It’s been a week where we had to unfortunately send year groups home to ensure that we could continue to deliver effective face to face lessons in school. Many schools in North Devon are now having to do this and some smaller primary schools have had to close altogether. We are hopeful that a number of staff will be returning to school soon and that we can get back to a normal way of working. However, we will need to continue to monitor the situation and we will communicate to parents and carers if we need to send further year groups home

Please see below for some further details in preparation for the week beginning Monday 28th March.

More Success for Our Netball Players

Our Year 7 Netball team went and SMASHED the B Team North Devon Schools’ tournament on Wednesday 23rd March at The Park School. First and foremost, they were an incredible asset to the school: polite, respectful, courageous and resilient. They won every single match, apart from a draw against West Buckland playing a staggering 7 matches with 4 of them back to back!

A particular game stood out. At half time we were losing 0-2 to Pilton. They reset themselves, refocused and went on to win 5-3! Player of the tournament has to go to Mia B whose shooting, dodging and fitness were out of this world. Extra special mentions to all the players though, Tichy for running NON-STOP; Chloe B for nipping in and out and filling in amazingly at GK for one game; Skye and Isla who kept finding that space, getting free from their players and winning the ball every time; Ellie for remaining cool, calm and collected and Amelia and Grace for super solid and consistent defence. It was a total team effort.

Final positions had to be placed on goal difference where we narrowly missed out on the trophy to West Buckland. The girls came away runners up with medals to show off too!

Well done girls :) Miss Norris and Miss Nash

Year 11s Boys Football Team – Semi-Finalists

Devon Cup Quarter finals - Year 11 wearing the brand-new kit sponsored by @ilfracombeholidaypark and has the privilege of playing on Marlborough Park. Massive thank you to Ilfracombe FC for allowing us to use the pitch and providing food after the game.

Year 11s are through to the semi-finals of the Devon cup after a dominant team performance saw the team winning 3-0. Ilfracombe’s debutant number 1, Luke B, produced a confident and master class performance in goal to keep a clean sheet.

Jack P scored the goal of the season, smashing it top bins from 35 yards on the volley. The other two goals came from Man of the Match, Joe H.

An overall fantastic team performance throughout!

Mr Law

Post-Match Incident

I would like to congratulate the boys on their fantastic achievement in qualifying for the Semi-Final stages of the Devon Cup. Unfortunately, this magnificent result was marred by a physical altercation after the final whistle. I would like to personally thank Mr Law and Mr Hayne (Match Referee) for managing a very nasty and unnecessary incident. We are working closely with Kings School to determine the cause of the incident and it is likely that the Police will be investigating an assault on one of our players. We have completed a full investigation into this incident and have concluded that our players conducted themselves in line with our ethos and values.

However, it also evident that a number of student spectators did not uphold those same values as a number of them were disrespectful and abusive towards the opposition players. This is totally unacceptable. Mr Law and Mr Hayne had to usher some Ilfracombe student spectators away from the playing area, following encroachment, to stop tensions building again. These same students were then evicted from the ground. The school will be carrying out a full investigation to determine which students were evicted from the ground and appropriate sanctions will be issued. I have been a Physical Education teacher for almost 20 years and think it is fantastic that students get to play and show off their talents in front of their friends. However, and to be completely clear, if any student spectators abuse opposition teams in future, they will be sent home, issued with a sanction in school and barred from spectating any other school fixtures for an academic year.

Mr S Rogers (Headteacher)

Morning punctuality – arriving to school on time.

This week Mr Cronin wrote to parents with regards to punctuality. We have high expectations for students’ punctuality and it is essential that students arrive into school on time every morning. The first morning bell sounds at 8.40am; the second bell is at 8.45am by which time students are expected to be seated. Morning tutorial is key to making sure the day starts on a positive note, so that students feel prepared and organised. Morning tutorial also supports whole-school literacy and gives tutors an opportunity to check their tutees’ knowledge organisers for home learning. These measures support students with their future learning and examinations; lateness causes disruption and can hinder progress.

For safeguarding reasons, our student entrance locks at 8.45am, at which point students are considered late and will need to enter through the main entrance. Any student entering after this point will be expected to complete an academic catch up at lunchtime with their Head of Year. If there is a legitimate reason for your child being late and it is out of their control, please write a note or email their pastoral co-ordinator to explain.

We really appreciate your support in keeping expectations high.

Mr Cronin (Deputy Headteacher Student & Family Support)

Covid Update

In order to run the school safely we will unfortunately have to send year groups home on a rotational basis. We will still invite some students in that are vulnerable. Please see the plan below:

Year Group Rotational Plan

Year 7

Monday 28th March

Remote learning tasks will be set each day on ClassCharts, and students are expected to complete this work. In the event that there is an issue with internet connection, students need to complete revision work using their knowledge organiser.

We will review the staffing situation on Monday 28rth March to see if we need to send Year 10 home again on Tuesday 29th and Wednesday 30th March, but this will only happen if we absolutely do not have any other choice.

We will only complete/action the entire plan if needed and will communicate the rotation to parents and carers each time. In the event of staffing levels increasing, we will call a year group back in. We realise that this is a huge inconvenience to students, parents and carers but we really don’t have any other option open to us at this stage.

Covid 19 - What are we already doing?

Students and staff who have tested positive are staying at home and will return to the setting once they are well and have completed the recommended isolation period.

Outbreak control measures are also being stepped up in school which will come into effect from Thursday 17th March:

  • We strongly recommend that face coverings should be worn by all staff and students on the corridors and social spaces unless they are exempt

  • Assemblies in St Christopher’s Hall will be suspended and move to remote videos in tutor rooms

  • Face coverings are strongly recommended on school transport to and from school

  • Hand sanitising before and after each lesson

  • Enhanced cleaning in school of regular touch points

  • Staff given the option to work from their ‘Teacher Box’

  • Ventilation maximised with classroom doors and windows being open

  • Mechanical ventilation units continue to operate at maximum capacity

  • Students and staff should continue to LFD test on Sunday and Wednesday each week. We have been informed that we will not be issued any further LFD tests but we will of course challenge this point with Devon County and PHE.

We hope that everyone enjoys the sunshine this weekend with their family and friends.

Yours Sincerely

Steve Rogers


Please see some ongoing Covid advice.

Face Coverings Update

We strongly recommend that students and staff wear face coverings in school. Face coverings at this time will be available from the front of school on arrival or from Student Services but we would prefer it if students could bring their own to school as the ones we issue are very expensive.


If someone develops symptoms or has a positive test result the guidance still advises people to stay at home to avoid passing the infection on to others. There is no longer a legal requirement for people with COVID-19 to isolate BUT public health guidance STILL advises people to stay home for 10 days (or until have 2 negative LFDs on consecutive days from day 5).

Close Contacts

Are no longer required to self-isolate or advised to take daily tests and contact tracing has ended.Routine contact tracing (provided by NHS Test and Trace) has now ended, and close contacts will no longer be required to self-isolate or advised to take daily LFD tests. People with COVID-19 will be encouraged to inform their close contacts, household and overnight contacts who are advised to take additional precautions for 10 days.


Students who are unwell should not attend the setting and should remain at home until their acute symptoms resolve (+24 hours for a fever).

IF these symptoms develop into cough, temperature, changes to taste and smell, should isolate and test.

IF test negative to COVID-19, still need to remain at home until at least 24 fever free and acute symptoms resolved.

Parents and settings should not try and ‘second guess’ diagnosis – if have the key symptoms, isolate and test.

Testing Update

PCR testing is still currently available for anyone with Covid-19 symptoms.

Regular asymptomatic testing of staff and pupils in mainstream secondary schools will not be expected to continue. Any outstanding test orders to school from the DfE will now not be delivered.

In the event of an outbreak, a school may also be advised by their local health team or director of public health to undertake testing for staff and students of secondary age and above for a period of time. This would only be as an exceptional measure and any tests schools have currently should be kept in case, they are needed for this. If schools do not have tests available, they will be able to be ordered from the DfE for use if in response to an outbreak.

As ever we’ll keep an eye on the guidance and communicate any key points to you.

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