Tuesday 19th May 2020
Dear Parents and Carers,
Apologies for the delay in sending out additional information – we have been waiting on guidance from the DFE (which has been drip-fed to us this week) to ensure that what we put in place meets the guidelines and keeps pupils, staff and parents as safe as possible. I have also been in close consultation with Helen Mac Connell, our Chair of Governors, my Assistant Heads, Mrs McDonnell and Mr Lake and our Office Manager, Mrs Gordge.
Hopefully this document will give you the information that you need. There will be further information later in the week. If having read this you have changed your mind about whether or not your child will be attending, please just give school a ring. We completely stand with the right of parents to choose what feels right for them and their family.
I have been asked by parents my thoughts on the reopening of the school. It concerns me greatly. I have a responsibility of looking after the health and welfare of my children, staff and families and as I stated in my previous letter, social distancing in a primary school is impossible. We have taken the decision to keep Google Classroom operating and the work set daily will be completed by the children who attend school and the children who remain at home.
As you are aware, the idea of opening is currently not definite as the Government needs to be certain that the 5 key markers have been met. We understand that this decision will be made on 28th May. Should the Government change its mind, we will still be open to keyworker children on 1st June.
Our guiding principles for approaching opening are:
- Safety of staff and pupils
- Emotional well-being
- Re-building of social networks
- Support through any bereavement that families may have experienced
- Beginning to assess learning and start the learning process again
- Continuing to provide home learning for those not yet at school
- To keep numbers as manageable as possible, we are able to offer children in Years EYFS, Y1 and Y6, two days per week. These will either be Mon/Tue or Thu/Fri. Wednesday will be used to deep clean the school between groups of children. Confirmation on which days will be offered to families will be given by Friday 22nd May. Families with children in multiple year groups will be offered the same days.
- Each child will be assigned a ‘bubble’ consisting of a maximum of 15 children (though we anticipate numbers being lower than this).
- Each bubble will have two members of staff assigned to them for the two days they are in and movement of staff within these bubbles will be minimal.
- Each bubble will have an area of the playground and the field which is assigned to them. They will be able to use this for break times, lunchtimes and outdoor learning.
- Each Bubble will have its own classroom, will have its own equipment both for use in the classroom and at playtimes. This equipment will not be shared between bubbles.
- The classrooms in use all have their own exterior door. This is the entrance which will be used for any movement in or out. There will be no internal movement around the school.
- There will be no school assemblies.
- Lunch (packed – either provided by school or by home) will be eaten outside wherever possible, or in the classroom base and all tables will be cleaned after eating. Each table will be separately cleaned using antibacterial and disinfectant spray and disposable paper towel to ensure there is no cross-contamination.
- Arrival and finish times will be staggered. Class 6 children will start at 8:40am and finish at 3:10pm. Class One will start at 9am and finish at 2:50pm. Reception Class will start at 9:20am and finish at 2:30pm.
- Parents who are keyworkers can continue to send their children in each day if they have no other provision. We realise that some families have not needed to use us up to this point, but as they also go back to work, this may change. Please inform the school office if you need to request a space. These children will go to the side entrance of school and KS1 Keyworker children will be in Class 4 and KS2 Keyworker children will be in Class 3. Key worker children will not be able to mix with the year group bubbles.
Handwashing and use of toilets
- Children will wash their hands on entering the building. They will wash their hands at regular intervals during the day, particularly when coming in from outside and before and after eating their food and using the toilets.
- Children will use toilets 1 at a time and have easy access to facilities.
- Additional cleaning time has been purchased by the school to enable all toilets to be cleaned over the lunch period as well as at the end of the day.
Safety on site:
In addition to the measures set out above, the following will apply:
- Parents and visitors are not able to enter the building
- All communication with the school office will be done via email or phone message
- Only one parent per family will be allowed on site to help keep numbers reduced
- If walking, parents must keep a two metre distance and not enter the main gates onto the swimming pool playground
- Parents are asked not to linger before or after school but to leave the site promptly.
- Unfortunately, the playground equipment will be out of bounds for all pupils (as it would need cleaning between each use otherwise and this is simply not possible)
- It will not be possible to administer medication during this time
Children or staff displaying symptoms
The guidance around this is really clear and we will follow it carefully. Please do not send your child to school if you suspect that you, or a member of your household, is displaying symptoms.
If a child (or adult) appears to be unwell with either a high temperature, a new, continuous cough or a loss of sense of smell and taste the following process will be followed.
- A senior member of staff will be called for (Mr Braund, Mrs McDonnell, Mr Lake or teacher on duty)
- A non-touch thermometer will check for a raised temperature
- If it confirmed that the child’s temperature is raised, or the cough is persistent then parents will be called to come and collect their child
- Children will be eligible for testing from 1st June and parents will need to book this test
- If the test is negative, the child can return to school
- If the test if positive the child, all children in the bubble and the member of staff working with them must self-isolate for 14 days
- Other members of the household do not need to self-isolate unless the child develops symptoms
It has been suggested that we may be asked to open to the remaining year groups towards the end of June. More information will follow as we know more.
What comes next?
Once our numbers are finalised, if you have requested a place, we will contact you on Friday 22nd May to give you final details. If you decide that you don’t want to take up a place from 1st June but change your mind later in the month then we would be happy to welcome your child into school.
Finally, thank you all for your continued support, this has been a very challenging process for us all.