21st May 2020
School re-opening Update – All families.
Dear Parents and Carers,
I wanted to give you all an update of where we currently are in terms of potential re-opening of the school to wider groups on the 1st June – other than Key worker/Vulnerable pupils.
I am sure you are aware that the Government has asked schools to reopen for certain year groups in primary schools – as we are a Junior school this, at present is this Only Year 6.
Before any wider re-opening is to take place, schools must first complete a risk assessment and ensure all guidance is followed, with the aim of providing a safe environment for staff and pupils.
We are in the process of completing the risk assessment and procedures for staff, pupils and parents; all of these consider government, Local Authority and Union advice. As I am sure you can appreciate there is a significant amount of information to consider, which in turn leads to practical changes on the ground.
The sole responsibility of choosing to reopen the school lies with the Headteacher, supported by the governing body.
I must be assured that when we reopen, we can in a way that protects not only the children and staff but their wider families.
We are located in the region with the largest current rate of infection.
That there are some discrepancies with advice/guidance from various sources.
The thoughts of parents and staff.
The mental and physical well-being of the children in our school.
The health of staff, children and their families.
Allowing cleaning staff, who have worked in school consistently since the COVID-19 outbreak to have a sometime off.
Taking these into consideration, I don’t at present feel able to widen the school offer from the 1st June. We need to make more preparations; ensure the environment and class rooms are adjusted to accommodate social distancing; ensure we have the right amount of stock for cleaning and hygiene until the end of term; make sure that we have PPE equipment for using in cases of administrating first aid. These decisions will be reviewed weekly by the school and governors – any changes will be shared with families.
Despite these concerns we will continue to plan and prepare for re-opening for the children in year 6, whose families feel it is safe to allow their children to return. The documents planning for this will be shared with all families. When I am satisfied that we are in a safer position and preparations are complete we will be contacting all year 6 families directly, to ascertain whether their children will return. This will be in a totally non-judgemental way – families must choose what is best, I will support families with whichever decision they make.
Moving forward I am aware, that we need to strengthen our contact with families;
• From the 1st of June, the aim for all families not in school to receive some form of regular contact, just to check in, to see how everyone is doing.
• We will be continuing the work packs for those children not in school.
• We are exploring a more streamlined way for parents and children to get messages to staff.
• We also hope to create some video hellos from teachers to the children.
In summary, we will be continuing with our Key worker/Vulnerable children child care – this I feel is a necessity to provide those who are in the most vulnerable situations with some consistent child care provision. We are very much putting safe and measured plan in place to be able to provide a wider opening, when ready. But, will not be reopening for Year 6 pupils on Monday the 1st June.
I hope everyone is well and keeping safe, as a parent I understand it is very difficult being at home and trying hard to support children in their home learning. Especially when children know this isn’t normal – I would rather you all try to achieve a little, than try to do it all and fall out.Please keep safe.