16th July 2020
Dear Parents and Carers
I am writing to you today with arrangements for your child to return to school in September. We are really looking forward to welcoming everyone back at the start of the autumn term and we are busy planning so we can do this safely for all staff and children. As I have said in my previous letters, we continue to closely follow government guidance for the re-opening of school and are taking all the necessary precautions to welcome everyone back safely.
You can find the guidance here:
Lots of things will still be the same for your child and, of course, there will be some necessary changes too.
Term starts for all children in years 1 - 6 on Wednesday 2nd September and all children are expected to be in school every day unless there are specific circumstances such as illness. (Parents and carers of our new reception children have been given separate information about induction and visit days etc)
Year Group Bubbles
To minimise the risk of the spread of infection, movement around school will be limited for everyone and reduced contact with other children and staff will become the norm for the autumn term at least. There are three classes in your child’s year group and these classes will make up a ‘year group bubble’. Your child will remain in this ‘year group bubble’ throughout the day including playtimes, lunchtimes and toilet breaks and will not mix with other year group bubbles.
Arrival and leaving school
So that we follow social distancing guidelines and avoid large groups of parents and children arriving and leaving school at the same time, from September we will introduce staggered start and finish times as follows:
8.40am – 3.00pm Years 2, 4 and 6
8:45am – 3.15pm Reception
8.55am – 3.15pm Years 1, 3 and 5
It is very important that everyone adheres to these times and we would like to take this opportunity to remind all parents and carers to follow social distancing rules on school grounds. Please do not congregate in the playground or at the school gates.
Where phase 3 children are able to walk down the pedestrian path and into school unaccompanied, we would ask them to do so to reduce the number of people on school grounds. Likewise, at the end of the day, if your phase 3 child is able to walk and meet you just outside the school gates we would encourage this too.
Communication with school and staff
Partnership between home and school is vital for children to achieve their best and we want you to know that you can always contact us with any questions, queries or messages. There are a number of ways you can do this.
- The school email is email@example.com You can use this address to pass on any information to the class teacher or ask any questions you may have and we will get back to you as quickly as we can.
- Our school office is open 8.00am until 4.15pm every day. If there is a queue, we would ask you to adhere to social distancing guidelines as you wait. One person at a time only will be allowed into the reception window.
- A member of staff will be on the door to welcome children into school as usual. Please be aware that social distancing rules must be followed if you speak with staff on the door.
Please note that, during the summer holidays and from the start of the autumn term, teachers will no longer be available to parents or children via their school email as they will have returned to their full duties in school. If you would like to make contact, please email our school office and they will pass the message on to the appropriate teacher.
In class and learning time
Your child will be welcomed into their new classroom by their teacher on the first day back in September. The first few days of term will be an important time for induction and settling in and getting to know each other. Children will see their friends, find out where things are in the classroom, find out where the toilets are etc. There will also be time to remember our school rules, learn new routines and be supported to settle back in.
Classrooms will look a little different when children return in September. From year 1 upwards, children will sit at desks facing the front of class and have their own labelled ruler, pencil, pen and scissors; other resources, such as maths equipment, will be shared between children in the class. Regular cleaning of desks and equipment will be part of the daily routine for everyone.
Please don’t worry about what your child may or may not have remembered from before lockdown – every class will take time to settle in and teachers are busy planning lessons that will help children to catch up. No child will be expected to simply jump straight back to where they were before lockdown and we will do lots to reassure them about this. As well as lots of exciting lessons and fantastic learning, we have scheduled in plenty of toilet and handwashing breaks throughout the day so all children maintain good handwashing and hygiene.
All children from year 1 - 6 will continue to have outdoor P.E. lessons every week and will need their PE kit in school. We have adapted our P.E. curriculum plan so that equipment is not shared outside the year group bubble until it has been cleaned and quarantined.
Year group assemblies
All children from year 1 upwards will go to the hall for assembly in their ‘year group bubble’. Other worship throughout the week will be in class. Under the guidance, we are not permitted to gather with other year group bubbles for assemblies and worship.
Playtime and lunchtime
Playtime and lunchtime will be staggered and children will spend this time with others in their year group bubble only. Play equipment will be used on a rota and not shared outside the year group bubble until it has been cleaned and quarantined. Fruit and milk will continue in EYFS and Phase 1. Toast and juice will be available for children in years 3 -6 to purchase if they wish to.
All lunches will be served and eaten in the classroom. All children from reception to year 6 will be able to bring a packed lunch if they wish to. Universal free school meals will continue in reception, year 1 and year 2 for all children who would like a hot meal. Meals will continue to be cooked in our school kitchen, and children will make their choice prior to the day. Meals will be served in a ‘fish and chip’ style polystyrene box.
Unfortunately, due to Covid19 restrictions, we will not be able to welcome visitors into school and events such as Stay and Learn, INSPIRE, praise and class assemblies, Open House will not go ahead in the autumn term. We feel very sad about this as we know how much coming into school and celebrating together means to you and your child. As soon as restrictions are lifted we will start them up again!
Most importantly though, children won’t miss out on certificates – we know how special they are and we will be awarding them in school for children to take home and treasure.
School finishes on Friday this week and will reopen for pupils on Wednesday 2nd September. During the summer break, school will be closed. We will not be setting weekly home learning or contacting children via the class blog during this time.
I would like to express my sincere thanks to all of you who have worked so hard at home with your children during this very difficult time. The work that you have done to support learning whilst juggling home life is truly amazing. I hope you have time to rest and enjoy the summer break and we look forward to seeing you safe and well in September.
Mrs Sarah Riley