Like many of you, I watched the Prime Minister’s address to the nation at 7pm on Sunday, 10th May to find out the government’s next steps; “Both to beat the virus and provide the first sketch of a road map for reopening society.”
What was said on Sunday night and the guidance issued by the Department for Education (DfE) is that secondary schools will not reopen before September for most students. However, the guidance does state that those students in Year 10 and Year 12 will have the opportunity to have face to face meetings with their teachers before the summer break. Year 10 and 12 children being the priority, as these children stand to lose more by staying away from school, particularly in the critical months ahead running up to vital examinations next year.
We will obviously continue to be open for children of critical workers and vulnerable children.
Please be assured that whilst education and qualifications are vitally important, the wellbeing of our students and staff is of the upmost importance to us. To this end, I will take advice from Public Health England and the DfE in all matters regarding Health and Safety in school for your child and my staff. We will do everything that we can to mitigate against risk, including the installing of additional hand sanitising/ washing stations at entrances to the building and additional deep cleaning the school day. We will introduce new protocols for all staff and students regarding social distancing in the school such as; one-way systems, sitting apart in classrooms, and only having small numbers of invited students on site at any one time but we will do this sensitively and in a way that does not feel uncomfortable and over engineered for our students – we want them to learn in warm and welcoming as well as clean and safe environment.
Over the coming days and throughout half-term, staff will be contacting home to discuss any issues that your child is having with work and to signpost advice and guidance on academic/ vocational matters and also resources to support – many students have engaged really well with Google Classroom and other digital platforms, thank you for your support with this. Staff will also ask you a series of questions regarding your and your child’s wellbeing, with a view to discussing the essential next steps and a timeline to support Year 10/ 12 students back into school.
I am very aware that this period of isolation and plans to return to school may cause anxiety and stress for both students and parents, it is therefore vitally important that we do this together, and maintain open and frequent dialogue throughout the process. Support will continue to be available throughout half-term. If you wish to access support, please contact school and a member of staff will get back to you.
Please keep safe and if you have any further concerns do not hesitate to let us know.
Mr. Darren Perry