How many days can my child go to school?
Vulnerable children and the children of key workers will continue to have access to school five days a week. For their safety, they will remain in a ‘bubble’ with other children who are attending school five days a week.
Children in reception and year 1 will have the option of returning to school for face-to-face support for two days a week, with home learning supplementing this provision. The two days of school time, which will be either Monday and Tuesday or Thursday and Friday, will be allocated to each child and are non-negotiable.
What are my responsibilities as a parent or carer?
As a parent or carer, you have the following responsibilities:
- To respond in good time to requests from the school or trust for information that aids our ability to plan, prepare, and maintain a happy and safe school environment.
- To inform the school in good time should your child not be able to attend on a particular day.
- To be polite and courteous to members of staff at all times.
- To understand that days for attendance will be allocated to your child and that they are non-negotiable due to safety and operational reasons.
- To adhere to the government guidelines for social distancing at all times outside of the school premises and to ensure that your child also follows these guidelines.
What’s the procedure for dropping off my child?
You will be allocated a designated time at which to drop off your child, as well as a designated drop-off zone. You should accompany your child to the drop-off zone then leave the school site as quickly as possible. Please do not wait in the playground or spend time talking to other parents. This procedure will ensure that as few adults as possible are on school premises at the same time and contribute toward minimising the risk of infection spreading.
What’s the procedure for picking up my child?
You will be allocated a designated time at which to collect your child, as well as a designated collection point. You should collect your child then leave the school site as quickly as possible. Please do not wait in the playground or spend time talking to other parents. This procedure will ensure that as few adults as possible are on school premises at the same time and contribute toward minimising the risk of infection spreading.
Will the school office or reception be open?
No, neither the school office nor the reception will be open. We want to restrict the number of adults accessing the school site, so we are closing the school reception areas to minimise situations that pose the threat of cross-contamination.
Will school transport be available?
School transport is organised by local authorities and third-party providers, not by our school. We are continuing to liaise with these authorities and providers to understand what their arrangements will be for school transportation. We will, of course, provide more information on this as and when it is available.
What will learning spaces look like in schools?
We will be establishing ‘bubbles’ in which children are grouped together and remain in those groups from the moment they enter school to the moment they leave. The ‘bubble’ concept works as follows:
- Children will be dropped off at, and collected from, designated areas and at allocated times.
- Upon their arrival, children are immediately taken to a learning space, which may not be their usual classroom. This learning space is their ‘bubble’, and they will remain in it for the duration of the day, with the exception of using toilet facilities or taking part in recreational activities.
- Each ‘bubble’ will have its own set of additional and incidental cleaning materials — such as hand sanitiser, antibacterial gel, and antibacterial handwash — which will be available to adults and children. There will also be hard-surface cleaner, which will only be available to, and used by, adults within that ‘bubble’.
- If, for any reason, children need to move around the school, wherever possible, we are implementing one-way systems in corridors or devising rotas to minimise interaction between children in different ‘bubbles’. Corridors will also have safe passing places, should two people ever be required to cross paths.
What will classroom learning look like?
In agreeing for your child to return to school in one of the designated year groups, it’s important to realise that what might be considered ‘usual’ learning is unlikely to happen immediately. Instead of face-to-face learning, we will be focusing on providing children with face-to-face support. In delivering this support, we will be engaging children in a recovery curriculum, which will include an orientation and awareness of the rules of contact, physical distancing, movement around the school, and accepted behaviours.
We have made this decision in recognition that, for many children who have not been in school for more than eight weeks, there will be a need to reestablish social and learning behaviours and ways of working before we can even consider teaching a more formal curriculum.
It is indeed very likely that before a more formal curriculum can be delivered, a degree of informal assessment will be required to identify the learning gaps that children have developed while spending such a long time away from school. These learning gaps may be counteracted by:
- Revisiting areas of the curriculum covered before the school closures.
- Reestablishing previously learned concepts and understandings.
- Assessing what children have learned and developed through home learning.
Will my child be taught by their usual teacher?
Not necessarily. It is likely that your child may be taught by a different teacher during this time.
What will recreational activities look like?
It is challenging to define what recreational activities will look like. However, every school and person who will be in charge of a ‘bubble’ recognises the need for recreational time and activities.
When recreational activities take place, adults will be doing everything possible to ensure that children follow physical and social distancing rules. There is, however, the slight possibility that, in their excitement, children may breach these protocols. Rest assured that our staff will remain vigilant in upholding these safety guidelines and make every possible effort to prevent breaches occurring.
What will lunchtime look like?
Our school will not be providing any form of canteen service, with kitchen and dining areas remaining closed. Instead, we will be asking parents to provide a packed lunch for their child to bring to school. We also ask that, wherever possible, you send food in disposable packaging or containers.
Please be aware that all food packaging and containers will not be returned. However, water bottles can be brought in, but will remain in school and within the bubble for the duration of the term. Rest assured that water bottles left in the school will be cleaned regularly.
Children will eat in their ‘bubbles’ to minimise any risk of cross-contamination. Once they have finished eating, all food debris, wrapping, and waste will be placed in a bin bag, which will be tied and disposed of. A responsible adult will then clean all hard surfaces before the afternoon begins.