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Proposal to Modify School Day Hours

Proposal to Modify School Day Hours for Pupils at Brunel School

I trust this letter finds you well. As part of our ongoing commitment to providing the best possible educational experience for our pupils, I am writing to inform you about a proposed adjustment to the school day hours for students at Brunel School.

Over the years, educational research has shed light on the unique needs of students facing social, emotional, and mental health challenges. Understanding the significance of tailoring our educational approach to meet these needs, we have carefully examined the literature surrounding SEMH education. According to recent studies, a modified school day has proven to be beneficial in enhancing the overall well-being and academic performance of students in SEMH settings. This insight has also been shared by our School Improvement Partner, who supports this strategy.

Research has highlighted the positive impact of a reduced school day on students' ability to manage stress and anxiety levels. The findings suggested that by adjusting the school day hours, we can create an environment that fosters a more supportive and less overwhelming atmosphere for students with SEMH needs. Of note also is the importance of flexibility in educational settings for students with diverse learning needs. A modified school day was identified as a key factor in accommodating the varying cognitive and emotional needs of these students, allowing for a more personalized and effective learning experience.

In light of this, and with our ongoing commitment to providing the best education for your child, we are proposing to implement a reduced school day for students in Brunel School. This adjustment aims to create a more conducive learning environment, enabling our students to thrive academically while addressing their unique social, emotional, and mental health needs.

Current School Day for Students:  09.00 to 15.00

Proposed School Day for Students: 09.30 to 2.30

Should the changes be approved, they will come into effect from Monday 15th April 2024.

We believe that these changes will be beneficial to the school community, and will have a positive effect on your child’s education.  It will allow for the 5 lessons per day model, but all of an even 45 minute length; this is a more appropriate lesson time for an SEMH school whilst still giving 30 minutes tutor time each morning. This will also allow for staff to begin offering lunchtime clubs for students, which is something students have voiced an interest in during the last few weeks. The current school day is proving too long for many of our students. We want for them to feel they have been successful and have managed to engage fully in their learning. We believe this will be a positive solution as we move forward.

As you are aware, our school is on a rapid improvement journey with the Local Authority and Special Partnership Trust. Improvement takes a good deal of planning and implementation to upskill the team, to ensure our pupils needs are always met. This new model will allow for staff to continue supporting students over lunch time (rather than bringing in external lunchtime supervision.) This aspect will ensure that extra staffing funds are saved, which we can then use to provide exciting resources.  It will also mean that there is time available in the working day for staff to engage in extensive training and continuing professional development. It will also allow us to build an after schools provision in the way of clubs in the longer term, and driving our mission to provide inter-school opportunities. Pupils will also be able to attend to their own interests after school, such as boxing, football clubs and dance.

The information in this letter has also been sent to the Local Governing Body, the Local Authorities (Torbay and Devon). We will work together so that there is minimal disruption.

I appreciate that these changes may affect you in terms of childcare or working arrangements, and you may have questions related to your child’s education. For this reason, I would like to invite you to please share any feedback that you have by sending it to  with the title “Timings of School Day Consultation” in the header of your email


Thank you for your understanding and collaboration.


Best regards

Vikki Alden