Dear Parents and Carers,
Following the announcement from the Government that schools will begin reopening for directed year groups we have been very busy risk assessing what we can safely offer. Unfortunately, this means that many of our usual things will have to change for a while so that we can keep all pupils and staff safe. We will continue to review our plans and risk assessment and make sure that we follow the guidance from government departments, the Local Authority and Public Health England. We cannot promise that there will be no risks at all as this just isn’t possible, but our thorough risk assessment has been written to reduce as many risks as possible.
The Government has recommended some controls which all must follow. These include:
Not attending school if you feel unwell
cleaning hands more often than usual - wash hands thoroughly for 20 seconds with running water and soap and dry them thoroughly or use alcohol hand sanitiser
using tissues when sneezing to ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’
cleaning frequently touched surfaces often
creating social bubbles who do not mix with other bubbles
The arrangements we are putting in place will make sure that we are following these controls. This will all be done in a kind and warm manner so that your child feels comfortable in school.
Staff will continue to put work on the class pages of our website. Please also look at Oak Academy and BBC Bitesize for lessons and resources for each year group.
Breakfast club and after-school clubs
We will not be able to run breakfast club from Monday 1st June until the summer holidays or any after-school clubs as we must keep children in their social bubbles.
As we know, young children will struggle to understand social distancing, therefore we are not able to open school to nursery children at this time.
Pupils in Reception, Y1 and Y6 have been identified by the Government as the first year groups to return to school so we will open only to those year groups first. They will be placed in groups of less than 12. Most groups will have only 8 children and 2 staff in them. Tables and chairs have been spaced apart in the classrooms so we can maintain 2m social distancing.
These social bubbles will not mix with other groups and will remain together with the same staff at all times. Staggered breaktimes and outdoor activities will be planned so social bubbles do not mix. They will still enjoy time outside in their social bubbles.
To keep the group sizes small and safe, your child will not necessarily be with their normal teacher or in their normal classroom. Any child arriving late will not be able to come into school that day as they need to mix with only their social bubble at all times.
We have ordered a pencil case full of stationery for every child so they are not sharing equipment. Children will be taken to wash their hands often throughout the school day.
Drop-off and pick-up arrangements
The following arrangements cannot be confirmed until the Government confirms that the science says schools should definitely begin to open for face to face provision and our risk assessments prove that it is safe to open our school. If this is safe, then the proposed dates are below. But these are subject to change and continual review.
Safety is our absolute priority. All pupils must be brought to school and collected by only one adult each day, including Y6, so that nobody is mixing with people from another social bubble. We ask you to be respectful and not congregate on our school yard or at our gates at all. Any parents found doing this may be refused further entry as we must be able to keep all our school community as safe as possible. Entry and exit for Y1 and Y6 will be through a one-way system in the KS2 yard. Please see the accompanying photographs.
If you would like to bring your child to see how this will work we will open the gates every morning on Tuesday 2nd, Wednesday 3rd, Thursday 4th and Friday 5th June between 10am and 11am so you can come to have a look before your child returns to school the following week.
Children will only be able to attend school until Friday lunchtime each week. Friday afternoons school will be closed to all pupils in Reception, Y1 and Y6 so deep cleaning can take place. They will not be able to join the key worker group as we cannot mix social bubbles. Children of critical workers who have only been in the key worker group can stay until collected at 3:30pm.
Parents and carers cannot come beyond the school entrance. We will not be allowing access to the school building for any adult other than school staff. If you need to speak with staff they are happy to do this via telephone, email or post. Our office staff will not take bags or packed lunches in for children. They must be sent with your child. Please do not expect to pop in to school or the office to ask anything as unfortunately we cannot offer this until further notice.
Reception - 9.15am drop-off and 3:00pm collection every day. Fridays they must be collected at 12:15pm. Monday 8th June start date
The Reception children will be in school from Monday 8th June. They will arrive and leave by the Reception or Nursery doors depending on which group they are via the walkway at the front of the building. They will be with a team of staff from the EYFS, who will be familiar faces to our youngest children returning. They will be taught in the Reception and Nursery classrooms and use the Early Years outdoor area at different times.
The staff working with these groups are Mrs Phillips, Mrs Carr, Miss McFarlane and Mrs Young.
Year 1 - 9:30am drop-off and 3:15pm collection every day. Fridays they must be collected at 12:30pm. Tuesday 9th June start date
The first Year 1 children will be in school from Tuesday 9th June. They will enter through the KS2 gate and be welcomed by staff leading their bubbles. Parents will drop off their child at the gap in the barrier and continue walking out of the side gate. They will be split into three groups of 8 pupils and will stay within this social bubble. These groups will be taught in the Y1, Y2 and Y3 classrooms. Each bubble will have their own set of toys to take outside for breaks and lunchtime. Collection will be from the walkway on the KS2 yard. Please wait in a line 2m apart and the staff will release your child to you when you get to the gap in the barriers.
The staff working with these groups are Miss Smith, Mrs Roberts, Mr Piper and Miss Ainsley.
Year 6 - 9:00am drop-off and 2:45pm collection every day. Fridays they must be collected at 12:00pm. Wednesday 10th June start date
The first Y6 children will be in school from Wednesday 10th June. They will enter through the KS2 gate and be welcomed by staff leading their bubbles. Parents will drop off their child at the gap in the barrier and continue walking out of the side gate. Each bubble will have their own set of games and equipment to take outside for breaks and lunchtime. Collection will be from the walkway on the KS2 yard. Please wait in a line 2m apart and the staff will release your child to you when you get to the gap in the barriers. They will be split into a group of 10 taught in the Y6 classroom, 10 in the Y5 classroom and 10 in the Y4 classroom. They will be doing things related to the end of their primary school journey, sports and mindfulness activities. They will have the best end of Y6 that we can manage in the current circumstances.
The staff working with these groups are Mr Chapman, Mrs McGinley, Miss Edokpayi and Mrs McMeekin.
Key Worker children – 9:00am drop-off and 3:30pm collection every day. Tuesday 2nd June start date
Children of key workers in Nursery, Y2, Y3, Y4 and Y5 will have childcare in the school hall provided by staff not involved in returning classes. They will enter and leave through the main door at the front of the building. This childcare must be booked in advance so we can split this group as numbers increase. You will be asked to provide proof of your key worker status if you have not already done so.
The staff supervising the childcare will be Miss Hancock, Mrs Jasper and Mrs Kendall.
First-aid and illness
If your child is ill during the school day you will be informed immediately and your child must be collected as soon as possible. This will remain our right to send them home, so we can avoid others catching the illness.
Anyone over the age of 5 showing symptoms are entitled to have a Covid-19 test. This must be done as soon as possible so that others in the group can be informed if it is safe to return to school.
Any child who shows symptoms while in school would be moved to a separate room (KS2 support room) whilst awaiting collection. Parents will have to ensure their child has had a test for corona virus before they could return to school and school must have sight of the outcomes.
The Government guidance on actions to take if there is a confirmed case is also very clear:
We will continue to administer first aid using our usual procedures and protection as per school policy. Staff will wear PPE during this time if social distancing cannot be maintained.
Uniform and things from home
Your child may wear their own clothes for the rest of this term, but may wear uniform if they wish to. Public Health England have recommended that clothes worn for school must be washed at the end of every day and clean clothes worn next time they are in school. No bags, reading books, mobile phones or equipment should be brought to school other than a water bottle which should be filled at home and returned clean each day.
Packed lunches will be provided for all pupils attending school. These are in fully disposable packages and none of it will be taken home. If your child wishes to bring a packed lunch from home it must be in a fully disposable container and will not be brought home.
The climbing frames and outdoor equipment will not be used by any children as we cannot guarantee that they could be cleaned to a high enough standard to make sure that they are safe to use until further notice.
Handwashing and cleaning
Each group will use a different sink to wash their hands. Soap and paper towels will be provided and children will be taken throughout the school day to wash their hands with soap for 20 seconds. We will make this as fun as possible too. Hand sanitisers and antibacterial wipes are also available in every classroom and at entrances and exits. Our cleaners will be on site throughout the day and will clean all frequently touched areas and toilets regularly, with deep cleaning once the children have left for the day. Deep cleaning will take place every Friday afternoon, when school will be closed to all pupils except those of critical workers.
We will also do the following:
encourage children to not touch their mouth, eyes and nose
use a tissue or elbow to cough or sneeze and use bins for tissue waste (‘catch it, bin it, kill it’)
ensure that bins for tissues are emptied throughout the day
We have bought new lidded bins for all classrooms which are pedal-operated so that pupils do not need to touch them with their hands.
Windows in classrooms will remain open during the day and where possible doors also to assist ventilation.
Shielded and clinically vulnerable young people
Children and young people (0 to 18 years of age) who have been classed as clinically extremely vulnerable due to pre-existing medical conditions have been advised to shield. We do not expect these children to be attending school.
Government guidance states:
When school re-opens, the curriculum offered in school will mirror the guidance being offered to parents for home learning. We may also follow the content of the BBC Bitesize primary curriculum for Years 1-6. This is so that children working at home would not be at a disadvantage to those working in school. Focus in the first few weeks will be very much about nurture and friendship activities while being socially distant.
We will be keeping attendance registers in order to monitor intake of numbers and ratios in school and to feedback to the Local Authority and DFE on capacity and uptake.
Parents will not be fined for non-attendance during this period until further notice and we will respect the decision that you make.
We will continue to make wellbeing checks and calls to some families as usual.
Due to the nature of the grouping system, children would not be permitted to change their mind and become part of an existing bubble after the start date for their year group.
In order to make it as easy as possible for cleaners to be able to clean all areas of school children will not be permitted to bring anything to school other than a water bottle. This includes bags, books, toys and mobile phones. If the weather is nice it would be better for your child to not bring their coat. If they bring a coat it will be kept on the back of their chair.
This document has been compiled using DfE guidance.
I hope that you understand the need for us to make these changes in our school but safety is our absolute priority. We will continue to review guidance and the risk assessment moving forward and will update you if as things change. I am happy to discuss any of these arrangements with you via telephone or email if you have any questions.
Many thanks for your continued support and kind words which are always appreciated by staff.
Take care and stay safe