Dear Parents / Carers,
I’d just like to start by saying thank you for all your patience, cooperation and understanding during the lock-down period. I can honestly say that the past few weeks have been incredibly hard trying to formulate a plan that adheres to all the stringent and ever-changing guidance. I write this as a father of four children, trying to juggle our own home education as well as provide an effective and supportive provision for you and our school children.
With thanks to a great and committed staff, we’ve planned to be open, in part next week, to children from the DfE’s specified year groups and to those of you who told us of your intentions on our recent survey. As I have said in the video that’s posted on our website, we have to lock this planning in place for at least three weeks until we get more guidance from the DfE. All of this of course, is subject to the Government’s announcement on Thursday.
We have been in contact with the parents of these identified pupils and have provided some detail but, I thought I’d share this information with all of our families.
We have remained open for specific children since the lock-down in March, but after half-term we will extend this to Yr 6, Yr1, Reception and preschool children. Our plans are to have these children in four distinct groups, or ‘bubbles’, that are kept separate for the whole day. Guidance suggests that we should keep numbers below 15, but fortunately due to demand and staffing, we’re able to keep them smaller.
We have to plan that the children in these bubbles are with the same staff, in the same areas and that siblings have to remain together, for the whole day. We also have to plan that these bubbles have to come in to school at a different time to others, as well as have different play, lunch and school finish times. This will mean that some children won’t be in their usual classroom, with their usual teacher or TA or use the loo that they usually use…. All of this, so that the bubbles don’t mix and we keep children safe.
We always have a strong focus on hygiene. Cleaning will take place on contact points during the day, but we’ll have daily deeper cleans after school too. School will be closed on Thursdays for further cleaning but also to provide teacher planning time and remote learning support.
If anyone is ill at home, we ask that children aren’t brought to school.
If someone shows symptoms at school, we will put PPE on, isolate them in the School House office and make contact so that they can be picked up. We will request that the parent then arranges for a test to be taken and, if it’s a positive result, the whole bubble of children will have to isolate, at home, for 14 days.
Considering that the NHS website says that tests aren’t available for under 5s, we have no option but to close down the younger two bubbles if a child shows symptoms in these.
Some specific details.
Again, just to be completely clear, we have made contact with all parents who gave us their thoughts or intentions on our recent survey, and have to lock our planning in place now for at least three weeks, until we hear more from the Government and the DfE.
Class 4 bubble … 8.45 …2.45
Class 3 bubble … 9.00 …3.00
Class 1 bubble … 9.15 …3.15
Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays,
…closed Thursdays (staff only, for planning and remote support).
Preschool … 9.30 …3.30 – Mondays and Wednesdays
Monday 1st – Staff Inset day (open for specific children)
Tuesday 2nd – just Class 3 and Class 4 Bubbles
Wednesday 3rd – Stepping Stones and Class 1 Bubbles start (with Class 3 and Class 4)
– Thursday – closed – cleaning, remote learning support and planning
Friday 5th – like Wednesday, all four bubbles are in.
• Parents are asked to adhere to social distancing guidelines whilst on the playground, and not to come to the school door but to phone or email Jo for any questions.
• There’ll be a one-way system in the playground, but please also follow Social Distancing guidelines. Don’t come to the doorway; please email or phone Jo.
• Make sure you’re organised and on time.
• School uniform (as best as possible), trainers, coat, book bag, lunch box (if not from Keri), a water bottle to be left in school, and there’s no need for a PE kit.
• Wash your hands before you leave the house and we’ll also be getting children to wash their hands often through the day.
• We have hand sanitizer around the school on almost every doorway. Moisturizer can be brought in and, like sun cream, shouldn’t be shared.
• We will be working outside lots so we ask you to apply long lasting sun cream in the mornings.
• Our end-of-day collection routine will be a similar staggered finish, using the one-way system and children can be collected from the School House garden.
Our classrooms will look slightly different to how they normally look, with furniture removed and / or spaced out so that we can support social distancing, reduce the risk of shared contact areas and help with the cleaning regime. Activities in our younger classrooms will be more structured than normal, with fewer activities out for free play. We’ll be discussing and encouraging social distancing with our older children and we’ll provide individual trays of resources so that they won’t need to bring anything other than what’s listed above.
Hopefully, it’ll be warm, dry and sunny, and we’ll all be working and enjoying our learning outside as much as possible in our bubble’s own playground and field area.
These are our current arrangements, following the current guidelines, and I’m quite sure we’ll have to make changes as new guidance is issued. I can only thank you in advance for your patience and support!
Julian ThomasSubscribe to our blogs