Letter from Mr Mirams - 23rd February 2021
I am writing following the Government announcement in regard to the roadmap out of Lockdown and the implications that this will have on you as parents and most importantly on the children of our school. There is much to now organise across both schools in the coming week as we aim for a return of children from 8th March. I am sure that this will bring a big sigh of relief for many of you who have once again home schooled these last few weeks. I would once again like to reiterate that all schools have very differing circumstances and all institutions will have different plans for the proposed date of the return of schools. All I can do in this letter is to communicate our intentions and outline our plans towards the 8th March. I would like to clarify immediately that we are considering the safety of all in decision making and also wanting to support you all in bringing all children back into school. Alongside this we have the Government directives and guidance to consider, but it will come as no surprise that I will be making decisions that are in the best interests of all.
Therefore, our aim is that all children of all ages will return on the 8th March to full time schooling at both schools but to achieve this we will need support and understanding from all of you with regard to a number of pressing issues. We are hoping that this plan will not have to be changed but is dependent on us all working together. I hope this letter answers many queries that you have:
SECONDARY PUPIL TESTING:
We will be instigating a testing programme for all Secondary Pupils from later this week and to ensure little disruption to teaching and to reduce risk to all we will be making use of the days leading to 8th March. This will mean that we have done all we can prior to the start date to ensure that there is a minimal risk to Covid coming into school. Many places will do it differently but we will be sending guidance out as to how we will be managing this. The following scenario will be taking place:
- Drive through testing on the school site for all pupils at Secondary
- Pupils tested twice before the 8th March start date
- From 8th March pupils given self testing kits to do at home
We will send a separate letter out to you all clarifying times and the protocols. Testing is not compulsory but we strongly advise that all pupils are tested alongside our staff to ensure that we are keeping disruption to a minimum. You will be given the option to:
- Use school testing arrangements
- Use Asymptomatic local centres
- Opt out (not advised)
PUPIL RETURN TIMES:
On Monday, 8th March all pupils are expected to attend both schools and we will be reverting to our previous start and end times that were in place before Christmas:
- 8.30am – 8.40am – KS2 arrival and straight into school from the main gates
- 8.40am-8.50am – Reception and KS1 arrival and straight into school from the main gates
- Pick up will start at 2.45 for Year R,1 and 2
- Pick Up will start at 2.55 for Year 3,4,5,6 and siblings.
Please wear face coverings at drop off and pick up times as well as social distancing.
Pupils use the same entrances as Term 1.
- 8.30am - 8.35am – Year 7 and 9
- 8.35am – 8.40am – Year 8 and 11
- 8.40am – 8.45am – Year 10 and Sixth Form
- Gradual dismissal of year group PODS from 2.15 to 2.30pm
As advised by the Government we will continue to keep all year groups in PODS as we did before Christmas and there will be little or minimal mixing of pupils. All secondary pupils MUST wear face coverings throughout the day and in lessons. There will be limited exemption to this rule and from now on a medical certificate should be provided from a medical professional.
We will be accepting few visitors and any meetings will take place over the phone or on TEAMS as before. PLEASE DO NOT TURN UP AT SCHOOL WITHOUT AN APPOINTMENT.
From Monday, 8th March there will only be face to face teaching and no more live teaching will take place on TEAMS. The Government have made it clear that all pupils should be in school from this date and that we should follow normal attendance procedures from this date. TEAMS may be used for intervention or revision classes but not for normal daily teaching.
The school continues to be open for a large number of Key worker children and will remain so up to 8th March. However, to reorganise everything once again there will be no Teams teaching form the end of Wednesday, 3rd March. All work will be on Purple Mash or uploaded on Teams for the Friday and World Book Day Resources for the Thursday. We will no longer be accepting any more Key worker children from today.
EXTENDED DAY AND BREAKFAST CLUB:
We will open this up again for all from 8th March and you will receive an email in the next few days to explain how this will work. There will be limited spaces available and they will be on a first come, first served basis From Term 5 we will look to widen the offer to all our community and begin to start up some limited clubs again at Primary.
AFTER SCHOOL CLUBS SECONDARY:
We will be looking to restart after school activities at Secondary after Easter if infection rates and disruption are kept to a minimum.
From 8th March I would like to draw everyone`s attention to the expectations in regard to behaviour, uniform and work ethic. We will expect all to follow our rules and adhere to what is in place right from the start. So I suggest that preparations are done in regard to footwear, hair colour/style, jewellery and showing respect for each other. We pride ourselves on our relationships with you so please ensure that all pupils are clear on expectations when we start back. None of us need a fall out on day one!
If I`m totally honest you have all been brilliant and so supportive over the last year. It has been extremely difficult to meet the needs of all, follow the guidance and jump through every hoop. I hope that once again we are providing clarity through this letter and those that will follow in the coming days. This will not be easy, we have set a huge challenge of getting over 1600 children back to school in one day, but we will do it, we will continue their education and once we have guidance we will aim to get the children the grades they deserve. All I ask as Headteacher is some understanding, patience with us and a willingness to support in the coming days.
It will be lovely to see you all again!
God Bless You.