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Changes

September 10, 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

I appreciate that you have received many communications this week but they are an unfortunate necessity during these changing times.

You will have received my letter regarding COVID and the expectations of what to do. This was in response to many phone calls concerning parents worried about sending children who were not feeling well into school.

Yesterday you should have received several communications linked to your child’s class. Their curriculum for this term, their maths KIRFS, the power point presentation (which is usually conducted face to face – but obviously not this year) and the Yearly Planner.

Please see the following points regarding these:

1) As we have not been able to meet face to face as usual for our coffee/information meeting, please feel free to contact your child’s teacher should you have any questions or need any clarification.

 

2) As I stated in my last letter, the Yearly Planner has fewer items than usual due to the current state of affairs and will be subject to change with things being added and removed as necessary due to guidance from the DfE.

In light of new government restrictions starting on Monday, it is imperative that we reduce the number of people on site and so have adapted the start of the day slightly.

For drop off from Monday 14th September 2020 these things will stay the same:

· Years 4 and 5 to enter school from 8.30am-8.40am – promptly

· Years 3 and 6 to enter school from 8.40am-8.50am – promptly

 

For drop off from Monday 14th September these things will change:

· Children greeted at the entrance gate (Church Road) to the playground by a member of staff.

· Children in Year 4, 5 and 6 to enter the bike rack path on their own at their correct time, enter the playground and go straight into class.

· Year 3 children and parents to assemble outside the wooden gates (Vine Road) where your child will be met by a member of staff who will direct them to their class.

· Children in Years 5 and 6 (with permission slips) may walk to and from school alone but must not arrive too early or late for school.

Pick-ups will remain the same, including their timings.

We are making these changes to alleviate the heavy congestion on the school playground and try to limit the potential for cross contamination. We need to be monitoring this social distancing in order to prevent any spread of the virus and the possible closure of all or part of the school.

If you need to get a message to a specific teacher, please use the Home/School contact book in the usual manner.

We appreciate your continued support in this ever-changing state of affairs.

With best wishes,

Damian Tucker

Head Teacher

Info for parents (2)

September 08, 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

There will be several communications coming out this week which I would like to draw your attention to. Later this week you will receive the year group letters informing you of what the children will be studying this term (we aim to provide a full and broad curriculum as we settle back into school life). This will be accompanied by our Yearly Planner which we send out at the beginning of each year with information about events/activities throughout the year. It has been very interesting writing it this year with no knowledge of what we might or might not be able to deliver. As things currently stand we will not be able to invite parents to any assemblies/performances, but we hope this might change should things improve nationally. We are currently managing to have regular assemblies for the children by having two year groups, socially distanced, in the hall. We are unable to fit parents in there too. We are aiming to film class assemblies and make them available for parents to watch (more information when we have finalised the process). As you are aware we have already made several changes to drop off and we will continue to make slight changes and tweaks to improve the flow and speed by which we can get the children straight to their classrooms. Please watch out for these letters later this week.

With stories in the news of school closures and some local schools required to close bubbles I wanted to take this opportunity to remind all parents and carers about expectations for sending your child to school. Obviously, if they are ill (non Covid symptoms) they are to be kept off until feeling better. If they display Covid symptoms (persistent new cough, fever, change/loss of taste and smell) please seek to get them tested. I appreciate that there are stories about people being sent far away for a test but hopefully that will be sorted soon. Information on how to get a test is available online or you can call 119. It is imperative that you get a test and the ‘all clear’ before your child returns to school.

If a child falls ill at school, we will be looking closely at the symptoms. For normal illness symptoms we will contact you, if necessary, to collect your child. If your child displays Covid symptoms we will call you and advise that you get your child tested as soon as possible so that we can make a decision about the rest of their bubble. If the test is positive, we will be taking the advice from our local Health Protection Team. This could mean certain children/bubbles self-isolating/quarantining or closing part/all of the school. This decision will be made by PHE.

I am sincerely hoping that we do not have any cases of Covid here as it would be even more detrimental to the children and slow down the momentum that we have started to create as the children are now in and settled. I am hopeful that as parents and carers you are taking all precautions needed to ensure that you remain safe and therefore your children do too. I am pleased to report that about 97.5% of pupils have returned to school. Schools rarely have 100% of the school population in due to illnesses (not Covid related) etc.

Thank you for your continued support,

With best wishes,

Damian Tucker

Head Teacher

Info for parents (1)

September 01, 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

A quick letter to say welcome back and also a big welcome to our new children and families.

As you are aware, we start this year unlike any other year due to the changes we have had to make to allow for social distancing, Health and Safety and all the other demands put on schools from the Government. I have said in recent communications that although we have put into place many changes to follow the guidelines, we will need to monitor these to see that they are working.

With that in mind, I think that the entry to school today (first day back) went reasonably well but I need to ask for a few things to be adhered to in order to ensure that we get the day off to a smooth start. I fully appreciate that this was not only the first day for our new Year 3 pupils, but also the first day back for all pupils having been away from school for about 6 months. The children were unsure where to line up and all parents wanted to see their children into class. However, can I ask that from now on you enter the school (as normal – by the bike rack path) and that your children walk straight to their class and that you leave by the wooden gates as soon as possible without clogging up the main entrance. You can say your goodbyes whilst in the line and this will then speed up the process of getting the children into school. Some parents were held up at the back of the queue due to the slow moving line (which I appreciate due to first day excitement) and we need the line to move more quickly. As you know we have yellow lines to ensure social distancing and it is your responsibility to keep your distance from others. This is why we have asked parents to drop off their children rather than coming to school alone (including year 6, although this might change in the future so please watch out for more information).

We also had children arriving in the wrong time slot. We need to be accurate with the timings so that we can get the children to class. Please ensure that if you have children in year 4 or 5 that you arrive promptly between 8.30am – 8.40am. Their class teachers will be outside and they know where to go now to join the line. If you have a child in year 3 or 6, you need to arrive promptly between 8.40am – 8.50am. All class teachers will only be outside during their allotted time slot. If you have two children in different time slots, then I advise that you bring them in towards the end of the first time slot and wait (away from the main gate) until their teacher comes out and they can then join the line. Please leave the school site as soon as you have dropped off your child or the playground becomes very congested. Please can I remind you to use the appropriate gates? Please do not come into the school via the wooden gates or leave the school via the bike rack path.

As previously stated when picking up children at the end of the day please enter via the bike rack path into the playground and stand in a socially distanced way from other parents using the whole of the playground space. When the children are brought out they will see you (please don’t think they won’t see you and that you have to bunch up at the very front where the children come out!), and they will get to you and you will then leave the site via the wooden gates. Again we need you to be prompt and accurate with timings. 3pm-3.10pm for collection of year 4 and 5. 3.10pm-3.20pm for years 3 and 6. Please don’t be early or late as we don’t want too many parents in the playground at any one time.

I would also like to add that you should feel free to visit the office for purchasing uniform and equipment but where possible if you could ring or email rather than turn up in person. We are still trying to keep visitors to the school to a minimum.

Thank you to all those helping out with this new system and I hope we can hone it to perfection in the coming days.

Many thanks for your cooperation.

With best wishes,

Mr Damian Tucker

Welcome back!

August 25, 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

 

I hope you are all well and enjoying the holiday period. The spell of extremely hot weather seems to have gone and we have some unusually windy weather currently. I found myself in the south of France at the start of the holiday in 41 degrees’ heat! I bought some bread at the local boulangerie and before I got it home it was toast! (old joke). My son did very well in his GCSEs and now believes that not working for exams is the way forward! Yet another difficult conversation to be had! In all seriousness, there have been some very sad stories from children throughout the country with regard to their A Level results and, although teacher assessed grades are now being used, many have had their world turned upside down by the unfair algorithm. I always marvel at how Governments trust us when it comes to child protection, safeguarding, children’s mental health, teaching children, identifying SEN issues and working closely with families but don’t trust us with our assessment of how the children we teach are performing. (I’ll get off my soap box now…)

I am sure you have been following the constant changes that have been happening in the world of education. It becomes extremely difficult to plan, with any certainty, what a return to school might look like with constant U-turns and very little information and direction coming from the Government. I want to reassure you that we will be opening as described in my letter at the end of last term and we will deal with any changes as and when they happen. (We have attached this again for your quick reference).

You will have seen the changes that seem to be happening regarding the wearing of face masks. The current thinking is that primary age children do not need to wear face protection but that it will become mandatory for secondary pupils, in highly affected areas, to wear masks. I can understand that some of you will be cautious and anxious about your child’s return to school in the current climate. Proper guidance on this should come from the Government or PHE but, in the meantime, we have decided that if you would like your child to wear a face mask they will be able to do so. There are some caveats to this offer though. We will not be providing masks for the children and we will not be reminding the children to wear them. That will be their/your responsibility. If any child is wearing a mask inappropriately, playing with a mask or if it interferes with their education, or the education of others, they will be asked to remove it permanently. As stated by the Chief Medical Officer, masks are not required for primary aged children. It is a decision for the school to make.

Aa mentioned earlier along with this email is the letter with all the information you need for the return next Wednesday. We look forward to seeing all the children and returning to some sort of new normality. Enjoy the remainder of the summer.

With best wishes,

Damian Tucker

Head Teacher

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