Since February all of our lives have been impacted by COVID. I have spoken with families and can fully empathise and appreciate the challenges we all face. The infrastructure of our school has had to significantly change with staff and pupils supporting each other, working as an amazing team.
From staggered starts right through to the end of the school day we have imposed restrictions on the movement around our school and have implemented a range of measures to reduce the risks further. However, we are now in the second wave and second national lockdown to stem the rise in cases across our country.
Yesterday we were notified of our first confirmed case in our school. Working with Public Health England, we have carried out all necessary actions and notified the parents of pupils and staff directly affected by this news.
As a team we worked long the into evening and have resumed early this morning to provide advice, support and reassurance to those who have sought it; prepared remote learning opportunities for those directly affected; and worked hard to ensure disruption is kept to a minimum so that school is able to remain open for the other year groups. But equally as important, we are doing everything we can to keep your children and our staff safe.
So, what next?
Our Year 3 and Year 4 pupils and the staff linked to those year groups begin a period of isolation. Only those who may have had contact need to isolate - we have informed those families and a copy of the letter we were issued from Public Health is on our website under the tab ‘Our School - COVID 19 -
Letters to parents’ - if you wish to view it. This letter outlines what each family must do and for how long.
We were able to clearly track the pupil during the one day they were in school and could confidently identify the limited areas they had visited, with the contacts linked on this day.
Due to the measures we have in place which include: regular cleaning of toilets throughout the day, the cleaning of touch spots, tables and chairs between lessons, the increased amount of time spent outside, the limited movement within the building (which is coordinated by staff and the use of walkie talkies) making sure only one class is allowed in our corridors at one time, allowing only 3 children from the class into their cloakroom at one time, recording seating plans with 1m and 2m spacing in place and playtimes spent in year zones - we were able to limit the volume of pupils and staff that may have come into contact. The rule from Public Health is - if you can’t rule them out, you must rule them. Therefore, we closed the lower key stage 2 bubble as outdoor play is taken twice a day with the two year groups. Although separate and zoned apart, if there is a slight chance contact took place, even remotely, we need to factor this in. A very cautious but necessary action, I hope you would all agree.
The remaining year groups will continue to attend school with all our protective measures still firmly in place.
In the meantime, we are working with parents and pupils who have been directly affected but if you have any queries or would like clarification on any aspect please do not hesitate to contact me. Although we are focused on the job at hand I completely understand if any family has questions or just requires further reassurance. I am happy to make time if you need me.