VERY IMPORTANT: General Information on School Reopening From 8th March 2021

Dear Parents and Carers,

I hope that you and your families are safe and well. For families who have lost loved ones during this time we offer our condolences and any support that the school is able to provide.

 If you need to speak to us about any family bereavement you have experienced in recent weeks, please phone the school office (0161 432 1916) so that we can arrange a time that Mrs Whitlow, the Family Liaison Officer can speak to you. We can also provide copies of Stockport Council’s Bereavement Guidance and support is available at the following link http://www.stockport.gov.uk/wellbeingcoronavirus

I would also like to thank all of you who have kept up with the challenging demands of home learning, you have done a great job and we have really enjoyed looking at the work and activities that children have completed during lockdown.

As you will know, school has been open to groups of critical worker children vulnerable children since the 7th of January. The government recently announced that from March 8th, all primary age children will be expected to return to school and attend full time as normal and all schools have been given specific instructions to put twelve control measures in place to make this return as safe as possible for children, staff and parents. A link to the guidance has been added below. Please take the time to look at this if you can.

Schools coronavirus (COVID-19) operational guidance (applies from 8 March) Ref: DfE-00024-2021

On Monday 8th March, children will return to their usual classroom with their classmates and teachers as they did before the Christmas break.  However, the school will still have to operate under strict social distancing guidelines and the children will stay in their class bubbles as they did before the January Lockdown.

In line with the government’s lockdown road map, plans are being kept under review and are subject to change, in order to respond to the latest advice from the DfE as restrictions hopefully ease towards the summer.

When is school planning to re-open?

Our official reopening day is Monday 8th March, and all year groups are expected to return on that day. 

When and where do I drop off and collect my children?

Reception and Nursery children can be dropped off at the front gate between 8:45 and 9:00am

Children in Y1-Y5/6 can be dropped off at the Bollington Rd gate between 8:45 and 9:00am

Y6 children in the cabins can be dropped off at the breakfast club gate between 8:45 and 9:00am

Nursery children can be collected at the front gate at 3pm

Reception children can be collected from the main playground at 3pm

Y1 and Y2 children can be collected from the main playground at 3:10pm

Y3 and Y4 children can be collected from the main playground at 3:15pm

Y5 children can be collected from the main playground at 3:20pm

Children in the Y5/6 class will leave via the main entrance at the front of the school at 3:20pm

Y6 children in the cabins will leave via the breakfast club gate at 3:20pm

It is very important that only one person collects the children from each family to reduce numbers mixing on the playground. Parents must leave the site as soon as possible to prevent a surge at the Bollington Road Gate at 3:20pm.

Is there a breakfast or after-school club?

We are aiming to start a reduced breakfast club service again from Monday 8th of March. There will be limited places for each year group, as they will have to sit on separate tables in order to meet guideline restrictions. Places must be booked in advance via parent pay and breakfast club will open as usual at 8:00am each day.  

If you’ve paid for these before January Lockdown, you DO NOT need to pay again, your place is secured and these funds will be carried over.

As in October 2020, after school sports clubs will have to be exclusive to single year groups and will take place on the day that children have their games lesson. We are planning to open these up from Monday 8th of March and the clubs will be the same as those that ran between October and Christmas for each year group. If you would like to enrol your child, please do so via the parent pay app.

If you’ve paid for these before January Lockdown, you DO NOT need to pay again, your place is secured and these funds will be carried over.

The Hub has been open during lockdown and the plan would be to open this up to children in YR-Y4 but numbers will have to be limited so that children from each year group can be in separate bubbles.

If you’ve paid for these before January Lockdown, you DO NOT need to pay again, your place is secured and these funds will be carried over.

How will you keep children separate from each other?

Your child will be in a fixed teaching group with up to 29 other children. These groups will stay together for the day throughout teaching time, lunchtime and play time. Along with the measures listed below we aim to reduce (but not eliminate) the risk to children by keeping these groups separate.

  • Separate classes will not be allowed to mix with each other at break or lunchtime
  • Staff will avoid physical contact with children, including handholding. They will be able to administer first –aid and intimate care, whilst wearing the appropriate PPE
  • At the start of the school day children will walk straight into their class, after being dropped off at the gates by parents as they did in December.
  • All contact with the school office must be by phone or email
  • Children will wash hands on entry to school and frequently throughout the day
  • Children will continue to eat lunch in the classrooms
  • Frequent and regular cleaning of surfaces
  • Any shared resources will be cleaned after use
  • Individual stationery packs will be provided for each child to reduce sharing resources
  • Parents and children will need to socially distance on the playground at the end of the school day
  • Home times for children will be staggered to reduce congestion

Children are allowed to work together in YR-Y2 but in Y3-Y6, they will still need to sit in pairs, side-by-side in the classroom. Staff must remain 2 metres away from children as much as possible when in the classroom.

What happens if my child, another child or an adult in a teaching group shows symptoms of Covid 19?

If your child is unwell with any symptoms of Covid 19 then they must not come to school and you should book a test for them at https://www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test or by calling 119 if you have no access to the internet. 

 If any child shows any of the recognised symptoms of Covid 19 parents will be required to collect them from school immediately. We will also inform parents of other children in this group. Parents must then follow Government Guidelines on isolation and book a coronavirus test for their child. These tests must be booked online at https://www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test or by calling 119 if you have no access to the internet. 

Other family members must follow isolation guidance, (currently 10 days). If any child or teacher tests positive for the virus, the whole teaching group will be required to isolate for 10 days, even if they show no symptoms.

What is happening at lunchtime?

Each class will eat their lunch in their classroom. Hot lunches that are provided by school will continue as before. We will not be using the dining hall as this would mean children mixing with other teaching groups and it would not be possible to clean down the tables between classes or sittings. Children who normally bring their own packed lunch will still be able to do so. Please book your child’s lunches via the Lunch Hound app.

What will happen to Free School Meal vouchers?

 Vouchers will not be issued once the children are back at school. However, if your child is not returning to school because of a serious medical condition, then they may still receive vouchers.

What will the curriculum look like?

Initially, teachers will focus on supporting the emotional well-being and mental health of the children who are returning to school. Teachers will then quickly assess where children are up to with their learning and what gaps they may have in their knowledge and skills, during the lockdown period since Christmas.

Children’s experiences will have been very variable during this time, so teaching and learning will focus on catch up activities and tasks in the basics of phonics, reading, writing and maths for each year group, as recommended by the Department for Education in their latest guidance.

Teachers will be organising the learning structure for each week, aiming to plug the gaps that children may have in the National Curriculum requirements for each year group. As the summer term progresses and children begin to catch up, wider learning aspects from a range of subjects will be introduced into the curriculum.

 The funds that central government made available to schools in the autumn term to support those children who have fallen significantly behind their year group expectations are still available so we will continue with our timetable of interventions and support programmes to help them catch up.

Can my child bring things into school?

Pupils should limit the amount of equipment they bring into school each day, including essentials such as:

• lunch boxes

• hats and coats

• books

• stationery

Book bags and school bags are allowed.

On the days that the children have games (which has not changed since December), they can wear their games kit all day and this will also fit in with any children who are staying to do their year group’s after school club. Therefore, P.E. kits do not need to be brought to school as a separate item.

Parents of children in Y 5 and Y6 should think very carefully as to whether their child needs to bring a mobile phone into school, especially if they do not walk home on their own. Mobile devices must be handed in to the Y5 and Y6 teachers at the start of the day.

What happens if we are late for school?

Gates will be open from 8:45 until 9.00am. After that, children must arrive at the school office gate and they will be taken to their class group by a member of staff.

Will any school events be taking place?

Currently there are no plans to have any assemblies, meetings or events for children or adults, as we are not allowed to have groups any larger than 30 inside at any one time. We are hopeful that as restrictions ease and guidance changes into the summer term, we will be able to start having events at school again. In the meantime, please keep looking at the school website and school spider app, as this is our main way of contacting our school community.

How can I help my child?

Talk to your child about school will look like and try to discuss any concerns they may have. Practise helpful behaviours, such as hand washing and remind them that at the moment they should avoid hugging or holding hands with friends and staff

Do I have to send my child into school?

The Department for Education have told all schools to expect full attendance from 8th March 2021. Parents who do not bring their children back to school if they are fit to return, will receive a fixed penalty notice (as before the lockdown).

However, children who have serious health conditions or who are shielding should seek medical advice before considering returning to school. If your child has a serious medical condition that we are unaware of, please contact the office and let us know.

We feel confident that from our experience gained over the last year and with your co-operation, we will be able to manage a safe and successful return to school. We will be constantly reviewing our plans and procedures to iron out any unforeseen problems that may arise in the first few days.

 In the long term, we will have to take our guidance from the government and the local authority as to what measures will need to be maintained, but we are hopeful that school will return to a more usual timetable as the academic year progresses. Thank you for your continued co-operation and support during these unprecedented times.

Yours sincerely,

Simon Langley, Headteacher                                                                                     

Laura Thomas, Chair of Governors

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