Covid 19- returning to school in September

Thursday 9th July 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

I am writing to update you of our plans following the publication of the new government guidance for the full opening of schools in September - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/guidance-for-full-opening-schools

We are delighted that we will be able to welcome all pupils back in September.  Years 1 to 6 start back on Thursday 3rd September 2020 and new Reception and Nursery parents will be communicated with separately about transition arrangements and return dates. 

We have put a number of things in place to keep the children and adults as safe as possible.  Pupils will be kept in year group bubbles throughout the school day and, as such, we have had to make some changes to the normal procedures in school. Pupils within their year group bubbles are not expected to socially distance from each other however, they are still required to socially distance from all staff where possible.  There will be additional cleaning in place to ensure that high standards of hygiene are evident.

All children will be expected to come back in full school uniform and can resume using their normal bags and PE kits.  We do ask, however, that belongings brought in from home are kept to a minimum.

In order to keep all pupils and staff safe, there are some changes that have been in place since June 2020 that will need to remain in place, along with some new procedures.  We anticipate that these will remain in place for the autumn term but we will review this regularly and keep you updated;

  • There will be no assemblies in halls, however members of SLT will run some assembles virtually using Microsoft Teams
  • There will be no assemblies/events etc. where parents are required to attend
  • Year 6 parents are not to come on site but to drop off and leave their children at the entrance to the premises
  • No parents to enter the school office - any meetings required are by appointment only
  • Parents are expected to adhere to year group bubbles when travelling to school and to support the school in adhering to social distancing both on and off site

Below is an outline of some of the arrangements that will be put into place in school for when your child restarts in order to keep the bubbles apart:

Beginning and end of school day

In order to help maintain social distancing, there will be a one-way system around the school.  Certain gates will be designated for entrances and others for exits.  These will be clearly signposted.  All children in Reception to Year 6 will start school at 8:45am and finish at 3:15pm.  It is important that you drop off and collect on time.

Hand washing

Pupils will be expected to wash their hands on entering the school building and will be encouraged to wash their hands/sanitise their hands at regular points during the school day. Any parents with appointments will also be expected to use hand sanitiser on entry into the school office.  The hand sanitiser that we will use will contain alcohol.  If you would not like your child to use this, please make your child’s class teacher aware so that we can find another method.

School Meals/lunchtimes

We will be offering hot lunchtime meals again from September for those children who order school dinners.  Children will remain in their bubble groups over lunchtime.  Nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 will all eat lunch separately in the halls.  Year 3 – Year 6: children with packed lunches will eat in a classroom in their year group and those having school dinners will eat in the hall.  Up to two year groups in Year 3 – 6 will eat in the hall at one time but they will remain socially distanced.

Curriculum

Please be reassured that when pupils return to school, we will analyse where the pupils’ starting points are and plan a suitable curriculum taking these into account. When we have more details of the ‘catch up’ programme, we will write to parents again.

Pupils’ tables will not be grouped as previously but instead all tables will face the front of the classroom.

Breakfast and after school club

Unfortunately, we are not able to offer breakfast and after school club from September.  This is because we cannot offer this provision whilst children remain in bubbles.  We will review this regularly and hope to open this in the spring term.

Extra-Curricular activities

Throughout the autumn term, we hope to offer limited extra-curricular clubs in year group bubbles.  Further details of these and how to sign up will be provided in the autumn term.

We are currently not able to book any school trips or workshops and will review this during the autumn term

Suspected or confirmed coronavirus cases in your child’s bubble

  • If anyone becomes unwell with a new, continuous cough, a high temperature or loss of taste or smell they will be sent home and advised to follow Government guidance.
  • If a child is awaiting collection, they will be moved to a room where they can be isolated behind a closed door
  • All staff and students who are attending an education or childcare setting will have access to a test if they display symptoms of coronavirus and are encouraged to get tested in this scenario.
  • When a child, young person or staff member develops symptoms compatible with coronavirus, they should be sent home and advised to self-isolate for 7 days. Their fellow household members should self-isolate for 14 days.  Isolation does not need to take place once a negative test result has been received.  Your child can return to school, once a negative test result has been received and they are free of any symptoms for 48 hours.
  • Where a child, young person, or staff member tests positive, the rest of their bubble will be sent home and advised to self-isolate for 14 days. The other household members of that wider class or group do not need to self-isolate unless the child, young person, or staff member that they live with from that group subsequently develops symptoms.

 

Travelling to and from school

If your child is walking or cycling to and from school independently, they must follow the above guidance and not mix with children from outside their year group.

If you and your child normally travel to school via public transport, we ask that you consider all other options to avoid public transport if at all possible e.g. walk, cycle 

If this is not possible, please adhere to the following: 

Please be reassured that if there are any changes to Government guidelines over the six-week summer break, we will write to you and update you of our plans.

Tell us how we can help your child

We know that the last few months have been extremely difficult for many families.  We want to support your child as best as possible when they return. In order to do that, we would be grateful if your circumstances have changed or you think we need to be aware of anything, could you please complete the form at the bottom of this page. Please be reassured that this information will only be shared with people who need to be made aware of it e.g. your child’s class teacher and the safeguarding team.

Attendance from September will be compulsory.  If you have any concerns or questions about your child returning to school, please do contact your child’s class teacher or ring the main office to make an appointment as we want to work with you and reassure you we are doing everything we can to keep your child safe.

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all parents for their support over these strange times and we look forward to seeing you in September.

 

Kind regards,

Nicola Matheson

Head of School

Covid 19- Returning to School Questionnaire

Covid 19- Returning to School Questionnaire
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