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There has been a lot written recently about the importance of Key Stage 2 SATs at the end of primary school.

Following a turbulent few years, it is the first time we have had to focus on traditional assessment and examination arrangements since 2019.

And, as we always knew they would, children and teachers are once again rising to the challenge.

We have all read comments suggesting whether these tests are right for the oldest primary school pupils, but we also see many who enjoy the experience.

Of course, SATs are not the only tests taking place and on the horizon. Those taking A-levels are sitting public examinations for the first time, having missed out on GCSE exams in 2020, the first summer of the pandemic.

We all know that young people have missed out on so much over the last few years, but we admire their resilience and committee to what is coming up. We wish all of them well and that they get grades they deserve.

Communication in schools has always been incredibly important – for students and staff, families and the local community.

And there are many ways this communication can take place, from the letter to parents to more bespoke class pages.

Over the last few years, one form of communication that has really increased in value has been on social media.

We all know there are pitfalls associated with the likes of Facebook and Twitter and they have to be used correctly.

But they have also become a hugely valuable communication tool, a great way for schools of all sizes to showcase news (such as the above photo of Karen Pickering MBE officially opening the Thomas Gainsborough School swimming pool), events and celebrate achievement.

And there has been a notable difference in the type of content posted by our family of schools in the last week or two – where we have seen a sharp increase in the amount of shared photos that have been taken outside.

After a difficult last few months for all schools, when Covid was once again rife, schools have taken advantage of the improved weather to take their education outside.

School trips and visits, art projects inspired by the local surroundings, Duke of Edinburgh awards and students simply enjoying some sunshine over lunch have all been highlights on the various social media channels.

All these things we once took for granted. We are fortunate that so many schools have impressive grounds and we know how much students and staff have been enjoying the great outdoors once again.

By Tim Coulson, Chief Executive, Unity Schools Partnership