Dear parents,

I am writing to inform you of our reopening plans for the pupils to return to school from 8th March 2021. We are obviously delighted that the government have announced that we are now able to resume face to face learning at school and we are very much looking forward to welcoming our pupils back, so that we can continue to build on their learning and the excellent progress they have been making despite the challenging circumstances.

All pupils will be expected to attend on-site provision from 8 March, with the exception of pupils following public health advice, e.g. if they are required to self-isolate or shield.

However, the return to school needs to be a safe return and we have a responsibility set out by the DfE this week to offer COVID testing to all Year 7 -11 pupils to enable this to happen.

Rapid-result Testing

Pupils in Year 7 and upwards will be offered rapid-result lateral flow device (LFD) tests to check for asymptomatic cases of coronavirus (COVID-19). They will be offered three on-site LFD tests, three- to- five days apart when they initially return from 8 March. After this, if you would like your child to continue with the testing, you can apply for the kit here:

COVID Test Finder (test-and-trace.nhs.uk)

Pupils who are following public health advice should remain at home, e.g. if they are required to self-isolate or shield.

Testing is not mandatory but is strongly recommended by the government. Consent will need to be obtained prior to these tests being carried out – this is to be given by completing the online consent form. Shortly, we will be sending out a follow-up ParentMail regarding the consent.

Attendance

From 8 March, attendance is mandatory for all pupils, and the usual rules for attendance apply, e.g. sanctions could be issued in the case of non-attendance.

If your child is following public health advice, e.g. they are shielding or have coronavirus, you will not be penalised for any non-attendance. Pupils not attending for these reasons will continue to receive remote education, where appropriate.

If your child is required to attend the school site but you are anxious or concerned, please email the relevant Head of Department, who will discuss your worries in more detail and provide any reassurance you need.

Coach Service – This is running as per usual.

Protective measures

We want to reassure you that the school has implemented a number of protective measures to keep your child safe upon their return to the school site. We have updated our risk assessment to reflect any changes in circumstances pertaining to the full return of pupils and will communicate any future changes to you as and when we make them. The risk assessment and full reopening plan for staff and pupils will be made available tomorrow.

Face coverings: Year 7 – 11
 
As was the case prior to the third national lockdown commencing in January 2021, pupils in Year 7 and above should wear a face covering when moving around the school premises, e.g. in corridors where social distancing cannot be easily maintained. The government also now recommends that pupils and staff wear face coverings in classrooms where social distancing cannot be maintained. Pupils exempt from wearing face coverings will not be required to wear one.

We expect pupils and staff to wear face coverings when moving around the premises, outside of classrooms, such as in corridors and communal areas where social distancing cannot easily be maintained. Face coverings do not need to be worn by pupils and students when outdoors on the premises. We also recommend that pupils in year 7 and above face coverings should be worn in classrooms and during activities unless social distancing can be maintained. This does not apply in situations where wearing a face covering would impact on the ability to take part in exercise or strenuous activity, for example in PE lessons. Children in primary school do not need to wear a face covering. (DfE Guidance)

Please ensure your child has access to a face covering where they are not exempt from wearing one. The school will maintain a supply of face coverings in the case that pupils cannot access a face covering, their face covering becomes soiled or damp, or they forget to bring one to school.

Pre-Prep and Lower School Reopening Arrangements – Mrs Wright

PP and LS pupils will be welcomed back by staff on Monday 8th March from 8:30. PP pupils will continue to use the boardroom door as usual and a member of staff will be on the crossing to greet them.

LS  and Year 1 pupils will use the red door, just past the PP entrance, where a member of staff will be there to greet them. The pupils will then go to their classrooms where their teachers will be waiting for them.

The school day will run as normal, and pupils will be taken down to the car park for home time.

  • Bluebird and Reception will be at the car park for 3:20
  • Year 1 will be at the car park for 3:25
  • Year 2,3 and 4 will be at the car park for 3:30 (socially distanced)

PP and LS children can bring in their school bags. Items brought in from home should be limited. Pupils will need their water bottle and should wear full school uniform.

At the moment, there will be no homework as we aware that our pupils have spent long hours at their screens. Spellings will be sent out via Teams and reading will continue as it did last term. Your child will bring home a book of their choice and when it is returned to school, it will be ‘quarantined’ and they will be able to select another book.

We have assemblies planned to learn about having a Healthy Mind and lots of fun activities in our last week of the term. The teachers have also been busy planning lots of wellbeing lessons to help support our children coming back into school.

If you have any queries or concerns, please contact Mrs Wright

Upper and Middle Schools Reopening March 8th 2021 – Mr Wells

We are looking forward to seeing all of our Middle and Upper Pupils back on Monday 8th March.

We kindly request that pupils come in to school at 8:50 via the car park and walk up to the school socially distancing from their peers. Pupils are then required to head straight to their form rooms where they will be greeted by their form teacher. All pupils are required to wear face masks upon entry to any building. This allows pupils a safe and warm area prior to testing commencing. We request that all pupils go straight to their form rooms for the first full week.

Pupils will be tested from Years 7 – 11 in a sequence keeping their bubbles from mixing with any other year groups. Results will be recorded by the school onto the government website.

Please view the video COVID-19 self-swab for healthcare staff  (learninghub.nhs.uk) on how to conduct a Lateral flow test. This video is mainly for health care professionals, but the context of the testing is accurate for our school pupils. We have appointed some trained nursing staff for testing beginning Monday. The trained nursing staff will help pupils with testing and record results.

Pupils are allowed to bring in their blue school rucksacks for their belongings. This must only include essential items such as pens, pencils, water bottles, gloves, scalf, colouring pens.  To minimise the crossing of bubbles, pupils will be required to carry their bags with them over the school day. Pupils will not be bringing books home, which will make their bags lighter. On PE days, pupils should only bring one bag in – putting all of their PE kit and equipment together. Year 11 booster sessions will not take place for the first week but will resume on Monday 15th March.

If you have any queries or concerns, please contact Mr Wells.

Wraparound Care and Extra-curricular Activities.

Breakfast club and Twilight will begin on Monday 8th March. However, pupils in Years 7 – 11 may only attend once they have had a negative test.

We are finalising our extra-curricular provision and will confirm these with you as soon as possible.

Thank you for your continued support during this tough time. We appreciate your efforts, and we look forward to welcoming back our pupils.

If you have any queries, or would like to speak to someone, please get in touch with the school office on phone number 0151 426 433.

Yours sincerely,

Ms Bingley (Principal)