1st of June re-opening

Dear Parents and Carers,

Following the announcement that some children will return to school from 1st June, we have been working with all schools in the Trust and reading a huge amount of guidance to see how we can provide a safe offer for a phased return for all families that are eligible. If your child has already been attending school as a key worker or vulnerable child, then they can still continue to do so. We will now be looking to open the school for pupils in Nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 after half term.

In order to keep everyone safe which is our highest priority, we have to follow very strict Government guidelines, so as I said in my previous letter, school will look very different from now as we move towards a ‘new normal’. It is hugely important that these measures are adhered to by staff, pupils and parents. Firstly, in order to adhere to social distancing, there will be a staggered drop off and pick up time (see timetable below). These will be clearly signposted and we have safety measures in place to support this such as a one-way flow system. Pupils will be dropped off by parents and taken into school by an adult and into their classroom. There will be a sanitisation station for them to use on drop off to sanitise their hands. In order to keep the number of people at drop off and pick up times to a minimum, please could one adult only drop off and pick up and stick to the times below promptly to avoid year groups crossing over. Once you have dropped your child off, please exit through the one-way system and do not gather at the gates or outside of the school. No parents will be able to come into the school building however, if it is essential, please enter the office one at a time, but I would ask that you phone or e-mail where possible. Cash will not be accepted for payment currently, so please use School Money. If you have more than one child, both children may attend at the earliest time indicated below. We will also be welcoming children back a year group at a time and then they are expected to attend full time (excluding nursery):

Monday 1st June-Key worker and vulnerable pupils
Tuesday 2nd June- Nursery
Wednesday 3rd June-Reception
Thursday 4th June-Year 1
Friday 5th June-Year 6

Children will not be allowed into school if they or any household members are showing symptoms of Covid-19. We will send home any children immediately if they have any symptoms.

Children and staff will operate in ‘bubbles’ of up to 15 children maximum with 2 adults. The children are not able to mix with children in other bubbles and the staff cannot mix with other bubbles either as stated in the guidance. This may mean that children are not with their usual class teacher, teaching assistant or with their usual friends. Social distancing will be maintained in the classrooms as much as possible and the pupils will largely be working at individual desks (except in EYs). They will each have their own equipment to be used and not shared. Break and lunch times will be staggered across the school so that they will not mix with those outside of their bubble. Pupils will eat their lunch outside where possible where we will have gazebo’s up to provide shade, or inside on cold or wet days. As always at this time of the year, please provide your child with suntan lotion and a hat on warmer days.

So as to not disadvantage pupils that are at home, we will continue to have learning set on Seesaw for all pupils for these first few weeks. This will be planned and responded to by the usual class teacher.

Due to the bubbles not being able to mix, we are unfortunately not able to offer breakfast club and after school club at this time as this will involve more children and staff mixing together. We hope to have this up and running as soon as possible where guidance allows. Teachers are entitled to Planning, Preparation and Assessment time and we usually have different teachers that cover staff for this time. As this is not able to happen with different staff and children mixing, we will be closing the school by lunchtime on Friday-please see the staggered pick up times below. If pupils are picked up before their usual lunchtime, they will be able to take their lunch home with them.

We appreciate this school will look very different for pupils and we will aim to make this as straight forward and calm as possible for pupils. We will educate them as to the changes that have been made and the reasons why with extra PSHE lessons being taught. Could I please ask that pupils bring in a water bottle clearly labelled with the pupils name. These can be taken home daily and washed and brought back. Children will be encouraged to wash their hands frequently.

As the school kitchen is now able to open, we will be able to provide a school packed lunch in the first instance to any pupils in Reception and Year 1 who are a Universal Free School Meal and also any other pupils who are a Free School Meal. Alternatively, parents who fall outside of this, are able to pay for a school packed lunch. For those pupils not attending school and who are Free School Meals, we are able to offer you a school packed lunch if you order by 9.30am daily. These will need to be collected from school at midday. The school voucher system will therefore cease as our kitchen is open as stated within the Government guidance.

Other safety measures that I would kindly ask you to support with are the daily washing of school uniform. This is to ensure that nothing can stay on surfaces. We will be having the classrooms and areas of the school cleaned regularly throughout the day. Pupils will keep their belongings under their table in the classroom rather than in the cloakroom. They will not need their PE and outdoor learning kits at this time. The library will also not be opened for the next few weeks but pupils will continue to have access to e-books on AR and Rising Stars. Please could I ask that children do not bring in toys from home.

The plans that all schools are putting in place for these allocated year groups are dependent on the Government’s announcement of whether the criteria has been met on Thursday 28th May 2020. There are many other areas that we have had to include in our re-opening plan, and if anyone would wish to discuss these, please contact me. We have very much missed the children and look forward to welcoming them back safely and all of our children when the time is right. If anyone chooses not to send their children to school, you will not be fined for non-attendance. Teachers have communicated with you and asked you to give an indication of whether your child or children will be returning from 1st June, and so those that have said yes are included in the bubbles. If you have not said yes, please can I ask that you do not turn up unannounced on the day your child is due in, please contact us and speak with a member of the team so that we can allocate you to a bubble (particularly in nursery where we have to consider ratios more strictly).

You can find further information here:-
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/closure-of-educational-settings-information-for-parents-and-carers/closure-of-educational-settings-information-for-parents-and-carers

I know this is a very difficult time for everyone but I want you to know that we will continue to support our families. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me or one of the leadership team. I will write to you following the announcement on the 28th May.

Thank you for your support as always. Stay safe.

Mrs Thomas
Head of school