I hope that you have all had a good summer break, we are all really looking forward to welcoming everyone back to school on September 2nd. Mirroring the lifting of restrictions in wider society, we have now received the operational guidance for schools which will be implemented from September. Please find the information you need below.
Step 4 marked a new phase in the government’s response to the pandemic, moving away from stringent restrictions on everyone’s day-to-day lives, towards advising people on how to protect themselves and others, alongside targeted interventions to reduce risk.
What does this mean for our school?
The most important symptoms of COVID-19 are recent onset of any of the following:
- a new continuous cough
- a high temperature
- a loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)
For most people, COVID-19 will be a mild illness. However, if you have any of the symptoms above, even if your symptoms are mild, stay at home and arrange to have a test.
The guidance states that,
‘If anyone arrives at your school or develops COVID-19 symptoms, however mild, you should send them home and they should follow public health advice. If a parent or carer insists on a pupil attending your school, you can take the decision to refuse the pupil.’
We all want all our children to attend school fully, however can we respectfully ask that if your child has any of the symptoms, please take them for a test to avoid any uncomfortable conversations on the school gate which can result in children becoming unnecessarily upset.
Pupils, staff and other adults should not come into school if they have symptoms, have had a positive test result or other reasons requiring them to stay at home due to the risk of them passing on COVID-19 (for example, they are required to quarantine).
What will happen if there is a positive case in a primary school?
From 16th August, school children will no longer be required to self-isolate if they are a contact of a positive case. Instead, children will be contacted by NHS Test & Trace, informed they have been in close contact with a positive case and should take a PCR, not LFT, test. They only need to isolate if they test positive.
From September, the bubble system and the staggered start and finish times will be removed, unless advised of a localised outbreak, when we may be instructed to reintroduce them for a temporary period. However, we will still take sensible steps to ensure cross infection is minimised.
The government has removed the requirement to wear face coverings in law and therefore it will be your personal choice if you wish to wear one when dropping off or picking up your child.
From September we will retain a number of control measures within school. These will include
- Ensuring good hand hygiene for everyone.
- Maintaining appropriate cleaning regimes including retaining additional cleaning hours at lunchtime.
- Keeping occupied spaces well ventilated.
- Limiting the number of children in the school hall at any one time.
- Carefully timetabled break and lunchtimes.
- Following public health advice on testing, self-isolation and managing confirmed cases of COVID-19.
- Staff will continue to undertake twice weekly home tests whenever they are on site
These measures will be under regular review throughout the academic year.
When children are required to self-isolate but are well enough to access their school work this will be provided for them by their class teacher. The learning that is provided will mirror the learning that is taking place for the children who are in school.
The School Day - September 2021
The school day officially begins at 8:55 and ends at 3:15. However, children can arrive between 8:45 and 8:55 when we operate a staggered drop off. More detailed information of each year groups weekly timetable can be found in the ‘Meet the Teacher’ presentations that were sent to all parents at the end of last term.
Reception and KS1 and KS2
From September, the school day will begin at 8:55am and will end for all classes at 3:15pm. Gates will open at 8:45 and children can be dropped off at any point between 8:45 and 8:55.
The morning session for our Nursery children will begin at 8:50 am and finish at 11:50am and the afternoon session begins at 12:30 and finishes at 3:30pm. Once again, the children can be dropped off from 8:45am. The children should be dropped off and picked up from the Nursery playground
The school drive will no longer be used to create a one-way system and parents and children should use the path at all times, particularly when using after school clubs when the driveway is most in use. At home time we will be reverting back to the pick-up areas that we previously used with Foundation Stage and KS1 parents able to come onto the playground at both the beginning and the end of the school day.
Before and After School Club
We are retaining the same procedures for drop off and pick up at our wraparound care club. Please ring the bell at the door of the main entrance to the school and a member of staff will collect your child or deliver them back to you at home time.
KS1 and KS2 PE
Following the success of the children coming into school in their kit on the days that they have PE, this policy will continue in September. This practice has resulted in more time spent participating in PE as well as a significant reduction in lost property.
School reading books
It has been wonderful to see so many children requesting reading books over the summer but please can we ask that these are all returned to school at the beginning of term. Thank you.
Last year was a demanding year for everyone, however with such a supportive school community and a talented and dedicated team of staff, together we manged to achieve many great things. None of us can predict the future but as we aim to return to normal school life, with continued safety measures I know that we can all enjoy a fantastic school year and we are all looking forward to seeing everyone again on September 2nd.