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A message from Christine McInnes:

2 February 2024 weekly update

2 February 2024

This week, Christine shares guidance on measles outbreaks, talking about conflicts and school news.

Dear Colleagues,

Thank you to the many who attended this week’s headteacher briefings at Maidstone and Brands Hatch, and also the Schools Funding Forum.

Guidance on measles outbreaks

As you will be aware, rising rates of measles infections have resulted in a national campaign to increase uptake of the Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine.

The following UKHSA guidance is available on GOV.UK:

The DfE has published an Education Hub blog with guidance on measles and the MMR vaccine for parents, nurseries and schools.

The NHS also has advice for parents on measles.

Talking about conflicts

The Israel-Palestine conflict sadly continues so I just want to take the opportunity to share helpful guidance and resources from the DfE

School news

I’m really pleased to share a short film of Professor Brian Cox when he visited Northfleet Technology College to talk with pupils

And huge congratulations to the Five Acre Wood school team who has their Inclusion Quality Mark Centre of Excellence and Flagship School status confirmed recently, which is a notable achievement.

And finally…

Work has been very intense since the beginning of the academic year and under those circumstances there is a risk of just working through any free time to catch up. Last weekend I managed to prise myself away from the keyboard and have a lovely walk along the Thames east of Gravesend. I saw three other walkers, two dogs and a fisherman as well as a number of ponies - it was peaceful and beautiful and just what I needed. On Sunday we had a family get together to mark Robert Burns Night, author of the beautiful ‘My Love is like a red, red rose, That’s newly sprung in June’  as well as the frankly weird ‘To a (head) Louse, On seeing one on a Lady’s Bonnet at Church’ .

Proceedings were opened with the Selkirk Grace, which I love for it’s simplicity and pragmatism:

Some hae meat and canna eat,
And some wad eat that want it,

But we hae meat and we can eat,
Sae let the Lord be Thankit!

The boys (15, 11 and four) particularly loved the stabbing during Address to the haggis,  though not so keen on the actual haggis. So a good weekend to help gird the loins for the week ahead.

Best wishes

Christine McInnes
Director of Education and SEN