Snow day! Head's 'get out and enjoy it' message to pupils

Chris Smith, headteacher at Neatherd High School. Picture: VICTORIA PERTUSA

Chris Smith, headteacher at Neatherd High School. Picture: VICTORIA PERTUSA - Credit: Archant

After worries over the loss of the famous snow day to remote learning, one Norfolk headteacher has encouraged students to "get outside and enjoy the weather".

Storm Darcy brings Snow to Dereham

Storm Darcy brings Snow to Dereham - Credit: Justin Dack

Chris Smith, headteacher at Dereham Neatherd High School, sent a letter to parents on Monday, February 8, letting them know he had asked teachers to take a "flexible approach" to remote learning.

Storm Darcy brought sub-zero temperatures, high winds and snow to the county, which left Norfolk looking like a winter wonderland.

Mr Smith said he was keen not to let remote learning, which students have been doing for almost a year now, take the magic away from the snow. 

Chris Smith, headteacher at Neatherd High School. Photo: Matthew Usher

Chris Smith, headteacher at Neatherd High School. Photo: Matthew Usher - Credit: Archant

He said: "I have this morning asked teachers to take a more flexible approach to remote learning today and not mark pupils absent from online lessons or add negative points regarding incompletion of work.

"This is so young people can get outside and enjoy the snow. I believe flexibility is the key word here."

The school closed it's doors completely due to "treacherous" travelling conditions, meaning even key workers' children were learning from home.


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Not only has the decision been made to give flexibility to children, but also to staff who have young children and want to take advantage of the fun weather.

"I know that there will be pupils who wish to get on with their work and they will be supported, " Mr Smith said.

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"However many young people are in much need of some fun outdoors and so they are able to do this without concerns over being chased up."

Dozens of parents commented that the headteacher's actions were a "lovely touch" and "much needed".

Storm Darcy brings Snow to Dereham

Storm Darcy brings Snow to Dereham - Credit: Justin Dack

James Wilcock said: "This is an excellent decision by Mr Smith, this snow event has given everyone something different to focus on and is a much needed boost to mental health for students, teachers and parents alike.

"All the children have worked incredibly hard for the last 5 weeks, time to let off some steam!"

Judy Butcher said: "Mr Smith totally rocks!"

Parents will be updated on the situation regarding the opening of the school site and remote learning this evening.

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