*** Please note that this has been updated in light of further guidance and developments: 29/05/2020 ***
We always try to ensure that our communications with you are warm and friendly and reflect the happy, nurturing and caring school that we always strive to be. The information relating to the steps that we've written below though, will probably sound a million miles away from that. The risk to the health and lives of our wonderful school community is real and substantial. The plan we have put forward is focused solely on trying to reduce these risks as much as we can.
Please bear in mind that this is a conditional plan and it will depend on many factors around the spread and containment of Covid-19 and up-to-date government / LA advice.
DFE restrictions placed on us
- Groups will consist of an absolute maximum of 15 children (referred to as a bubble). We cannot guarantee that your child will be taught by their current teacher.
- Children will not be able to mix with children who are not in their bubble.
- The children will have separate playtimes and lunchtimes and again will not mix with others.
- If there is a confirmed case of Coronavirus, all children and staff in that group and their families will need to self isolate for 14 days.
- Only 1 parent will be allowed to pick up or drop off their children.
Planned Phase Return Dates (Please note that this has changed as of 29th May)
- Year 6: from June 8th (Group A: Mondays and Tuesdays, Group B: Wednesdays and Thursdays)
- Reception and Year 1: Under review but currently planned from June 15th (Mondays and Tuesdays until the number of returning children mean we have to create a second group)
- Please note that there are no plans to have part-timers in Nursery back before the summer.
Due to space restrictions, we are able to offer each year group 2 days a week. Group A will attend on Mondays and Tuesday, Group B will attend on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Fridays will only be open to children receiving keyworker childcare whilst teachers plan lessons and prepare their distanced learning materials. Where families have children returning to more than one year group, we will ensure that their days are the same. Unfortunately, if you have decided to send your child back to school, you are not able to choose which days your child attends. We will fill up the Monday and Tuesday group and then create a second group when numbers get too high to have that amount of children safely in one room.
Timings of the School Day
We will need to effectively replace playtimes with an allocated outdoor time for each bubble, as we realise it is near impossible to expect children to socially distance at break times. Addtionally, we will significantly reduce lunchtimes and not hold assemblies for the same reason. As a result of this, the school day will appear shorter although lesson time remains the same. The timings are staggered as we obviously need to minimise the number of people, adults and children, coming into contact with each other.
- Year 6: 8:30 - 2:00 (Entrance & Exit: Y5/6 cloakroom door)
- Year 1: 8:45 - 2:15 (Entrance & Exit by Year 2 Classroom)
- Reception 9:00 - 2:30 (Normal Foundation Unit entrance and exit)
- Keyworker childcare will continue to run 8:30 - 3:30 as it has done throughout the pandemic. (Entrance & Exit: main school entrance)
PLEASE DO NOT ENTER THE SCHOOL SITE UNTIL YOUR YEAR GROUP’S ALLOCATED TIMINGS TO REDUCE THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE ON SITE.
Steps we will be taking at Church Vale
- We are unable to provide any breakfast or homework club during this time as we cannot have children from different groups mixing.
- We will try our best to ensure that pupils socially distance but we are realistic in knowing that we cannot guarantee this, especially with our youngest children - the countless school texts you've no doubt received through the years about headlice is testament to this!
- Lunchtimes will take place in the classroom that the 'bubble' is based. Year 6 children and all children of families receiving free school meal vouchers will need to send their child with a packed lunch. Children of families not receiving free school meal vouchers will be eligible for a 'universal free school meal' packed lunch. You may however send your child with their own packed lunch if you wish.
- Children DO NOT need to wear school uniform but they must arrive each day clean and in fresh clothing.
- We will not be able to advise you as to which classrooms we will be using yet due to ongoing building work of the whole of the ceilings and heating of school.
- Children who attend either the phased return classes or the keyworker childcare group, MUST be following government guidelines outside of school - for the sake of themselves, their teachers and every pupil they may come into contact with, along with all of their families. This includes travelling to and from school.
- The toys / play equipment that children can use has had to be greatly reduced - only things which can be easily cleaned by wiping will be available to use.
- Pupils requiring first aid will have to wear a mask whilst they are being treated.
- Please do not send your child in if they appear to be unwell, these are challenging enough times without adding the likes of tummy bugs to the mix.
- Only one child will be permitted to use the toilet facilities at a time. Each 'bubble' will have its own set of toilets if building work permits.
- All children will need to wash their hands several times throughout the day and adults will regularly perform additional cleaning of commonly touched surfaces.
- If any member of a bubble tests positive for Covid-19, every member of that bubble and every member of the bubble's household will need to self-isolate for 14 days.
Thank you for your understanding during these times. I am sure that these plans are just the beginning of what will probably be a long road back to normality - but as a school community, we will get through this together.