Full School Re-opening September 2020

Dear Parents,

I would like to start by a huge thank you for all the support you have shown the school over the past few months as we adapted our routines and procedures to ensure we met the COVID guidelines.   Whilst, I appreciate that some of them have been successful, others are not ideal but I sure you’ll appreciate that we have been working to ensure the school is as COVID safe as it possibly can be.   The children have enjoyed being back at school despite the strangeness of the ongoing pandemic we find ourselves still living in.    Although some things will undoubtedly continue to feel a little different in school, we are determined that the ‘love for learning’ will continue and that the challenge, fun and excitement of our lessons will continue to make the return an enjoyable and positive experience.

The majority of our routines and procedures will be remaining the same.     The following details outline our plan for running the school from January 2021.    Lots of the information you will be very familiar with.     Obviously, situations can change rapidly in this current climate and I will continue to keep you all updated with any guidance amendments, as quickly as possible.   As new information becomes available the plan may well be adapted to meet any new guidelines.

The measures we have set out provide a framework for the school to put in place proportionate protective measures for children and staff, whilst also ensuring that all pupils receive a high quality education that enables them to thrive and progress.   In welcoming all children back for the spring term, we are working on minimising the number of contacts that a pupil has during the school day as part of implementing the system of controls outlined below to reduce the risk of transmission.

When will my child return to school?

The government continues to advice that all children will return to school as normal in the spring term. Term will begin as planned on Monday 4th January.   All children will return to school on this day and attendance at school will now be mandatory.

What is a ‘Bubble’?

Children will continue to be taught in their class ‘Bubbles’ as they have been from September.  ‘Bubbles’ will continue to take break and lunchtimes at different times during the day and will not mix with other bubbles. Classes will be taught by:

 

Otters – Mrs Allen, Mrs Brookes

Hedgehogs – Mrs Long, Mrs Knight and Mrs Ashworth

Squirrels – Mrs Craven (Monday to Wednesday), Miss Turrell (Thursday and Friday), Miss Killilea and Mrs Dowman

Badgers – Miss Rauer, Mrs Gregory and Mrs Morris

PE: Mr Friel and Miss Turrell

I am pleased to welcome Mr Friel and Mrs Ashworth to our team.  Mr Friel, an experienced teacher will be delivering PE every Friday and Mrs Ashworth will be supervising Hedgehogs during lunchtime.   

We will be continuing with our broad, balanced and ambitious curriculum for all.   PSHE will focus on well-being and Sports and Music provision (Love Music Trust) will continue with additional safety and hygiene and COVID guidelines strictly adhered to.    In order to provide a broad and balanced curriculum, whilst also supporting pupils where needed, staff movement between bubbles will be kept to a minimum but is permitted in the latest guidance.

Uniform:

All children can continue to wear their full school uniform, in addition they can also wear the black PE hooded sweatshirt over the top of their uniform to keep them warm.  This will be permitted between October and February half term, after which it can only be worn for PE.   Latest guidance continues to state that uniform does not need to be cleaned daily and so ties and blazers can be worn.   Children are able to leave their blazers in school if preferred.   On the days that your child has PE we are asking that they still come to school in the morning in their full PE kit.   They do not have to bring their school uniform with them as they will remain in their PE kits all day.  Black jogging bottoms may be more advisable with the colder weather.

Due to our new staffing for PE, lessons across the school will now take place on the following days starting week beginning 4th January.

Monday with Miss Turrell: Otters (Reception) and Hedgehogs (Year 1 and Year 2)

Wednesday with Miss Turrell: Squirrels (Year 3 and 4) and Badgers (Year 5 and Year 6)

Friday with Mr Friel: Whole School

What arrangements are in place for the start and end of the school day?  

Staggered start and finish times will continue in the spring term, the amount of hours each child spends in school cannot be shortened from the required hours therefore our staggered times will need to take into account the expected number of hours of schooling for a KS1 and KS2 pupil.  Parents must continue to adhere to this time.   We ask that children are not brought to the site any earlier than the specified times to reduce congestion and queueing.  We ask that only one parent drops off and picks up to avoid more numbers of adults coming to school.

When dropping off or collecting parents must follow the one way system around the playground and observe current social distancing guidelines.  We ask that any parent who enters the site must wear a mask unless they are medically exempt.    Children must remain near parents at all times and we ask that playgrounds continue to be cleared as promptly as possible.  

Drop Off and Pick Up Times – As before

Siblings – 8:45am and 2:45pm

Squirrels and Badgers (Years 3 to 6) – 9:00am and 3:00pm

Otters (Reception) and Hedgehogs (Year 1 and 2) – 9:10am and 3:10pm

 

All gate will be locked promptly at 9:15am and 3:15pm

 

One Way System – As before.

 

 

Ian Rutter, Edwin and Anna father has kindly agreed to lay some more hard core along the woodland path so it should be less muddy.   

Which door should my child use?

Otters – Otter’s conservatory door

Hedgehogs – Hedgehog’s classroom door at the back of school.

Squirrels – Playground door at the back of the school.

Badgers – Playground door at the back of the school.

What will a typical day look like?

Lessons and activities will continue to follow a broad, balanced and ambitious curriculum.  Our theme for the Spring Term stems from the book ‘Maybe, a story about the endless potential in all of us’ by Kobi Yamada.   A long side this book we will using the following books to introduce the children to significant people who have made a difference to the world:

  • Of thee I sing – A Letter To My Daughters by Barack Obama
  • Little People, Big Dream books

Please refer to your child’s class webpage for more information about their learning.

Each bubble will have allocated play and lunchtimes to ensure that bubbles don’t mix.  Each bubble is also given an allocated toilet slot, again to ensure that bubbles do not mix.  Children will be able to go to the toilet at other times but an adult will ensure it is not in use.

What about Lunchtimes?

Lunch is to be eaten at the children’s desks in the classroom area.    At present, we will not be able to offer a snack at break and we ask you to send something with your child if they want a break time snack.

 

Children are not to access the building during lunch time and movement of the children will be strictly supervised so that they remain in their bubbles throughout the lunchtime period.

What other changes have we made?

Classroom Spaces 

  • There will be minimal movement around the corridors with all classrooms using exterior doors for access where possible.
  • All children with have their own pencil case with all the equipment needed in (these will continue to be provided).
  • Channels for the teacher have been created behind the desks for teachers to move 
  • All furniture not being used has been stored, including soft furnishings which cannot be cleaned. 
  • Doors to be propped wide and windows to be kept to allow for ventilation as per government guidance (where safe to do so bearing in mind fire safety and safeguarding).  
  • Windows will be opened across the school as soon as the school is open.
  • Cloak rooms to be left empty and children to keep their coats on the back of chairs.  
  • Children discouraged from bringing anything from home that is unnecessary.  Only a water bottle, snack, and coat will be required with a lunch box if they are not having a school meal.  
  • Book bags or clear plastic folders must be used for reading books and reading records.   No ruck sacks at present please.
  • Children will not be allowed to use the corridors unaccompanied
  • Children to come dressed in PE kit on their allocated PE days.  No uniform needs to be brought into school on these days as children will remain in their kit all day.

 Outdoor Space 

  • Different times are allocated for different bubbles.
  • Where lessons and weather permit, learning is to take place outside, teachers should use outdoor education wherever possible. 
  • Children are not to enter the building alone during break time.

Toilets

  • Toilets will not be allowed to become overcrowded and staff will supervise entry/exit.
  • Toilet breaks will be timetabled throughout the day for all children, although emergencies will be catered for with children being accompanied by a member of staff.
  • Children are to wait in the corridor until it is their turn.  
  • Toilets continue to be cleaned more regularly during the day. 

 

What hygiene measures has the school put in place? Please note, the systems we have in place are aimed at reducing the risk. They will not eliminate the risk.

Enhanced hygiene practices will continue throughout the school.

There will be regular cleaning throughout the day and all shared equipment will be cleaned thoroughly before passing onto another bubble – IT equipment.  

Enhanced and rigorous cleaning practice will take place at the start, end of the day with a deeper clean on a Friday evening.   Additional cleaning will also occur during the day after any shared equipment has been used.   This will include lunchtimes.

 

Teachers will talk with the children about safe hygiene practice.  It will include regular hand washing for the recommended time throughout the day.   This will generally be every 90 minutes, after every play and before children eat or drink.   It will include talking to children about the ‘Catch it. Kill it. Bin it.’ approach to good infection control.    Cleaning materials will be available in all classrooms, including soaps and hand sanitisers.

 

Can I come into school?

Unfortunately, parents cannot not enter the school building.   Any communication should be done via email, telephone or conference call.  When sending/returning correspondence please use the red post box outside the main office.  Until further notice all meetings will be conducted either via Zoom or over the phone.

 

What if my child is ill/shows symptoms at school?

Please do not send your child to school if they have coronavirus symptoms or have tested positive in the last 10 days. (coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms)

Please continue to follow the latest guidance as issued by the school on the weekly newsletter. The latest government announcement indicated that schools would be receiving rapid testing kits. However, this is only planned for secondary schools at present with primary maybe included towards the end of the spring term.

 

Home Learning

With COVID 19 still circulating in the community there may be a time when I will need to either close a bubble or close the whole school.   Bubbles will only be closed if there is a confirmed case and the school maybe closed if there was an outbreak.   An outbreak is confirmed as 2 or more positive cases within 14 days.   At this point the school would work with our local health protection team.

 

Any bubble or school closure would result in home learning re-ignited for those pupils affected and immediate remote education would be offered.   This would take the form of the planning we have been using since June 1st with the addition of high quality video with teachers explaining new content.   Every class teacher would provide a detailed weekly plan of writing, maths, reading, spelling and topic work to support the children at home.   In addition to this we have set up Google classrooms which will allow us to use online face to face teaching at this point and pupils to share their work so that we meet the latest DFE requirements of a consistent online tool which allows daily interaction, assessment and feedback.   Staff have received regular training on this during the autumn term and children are using the platform weekly in their classes as part of their regular lessons.

 

What to do now….

Throughout the autumn term we have been working with 2 bubbles within school and I wanted to reassure you that all the systems, procedures and processes we had implemented are working well.

I appreciate that this is a lot of information to absorb.  However, I thought that it was important to confirm with you how Warmingham CE Primary will look as we move into 2021.  Should you have any further questions please don’t hesitate to contact me.

 

Thank you as always for your support, patience and understanding during these past few months and I look forward to welcoming you all back to school at the start of 2021.

 

Kind regards

 

Kate Appleby

Principal of Warmingham CE Primary

Proud member of the Rural Church Schools Academy Trust

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