Coronavirus Update 3.7.20

3rd July 2020

Dear parents/carers

COVID-19 Update 3.7.20

I hope you are all well. You should all have received a personal email with a return to school date for your child (If you have not yet received one then it will be with you by Monday). We have managed to invite all children into school before the end of Summer term for some fun activities with their present class teacher. Those who have returned already are really enjoying being back. I understand that some of you still have some concerns but we have all the required precautionary measures in place to keep risk minimal.

Yesterday, the government announced their plans for September. They require schools to open to all pupils and deliver a broad and balanced curriculum. They have given details of how this is expected to happen with minimal risk; grouping children in the smallest possible bubbles and keeping bubbles apart where possible, increased focus on hygiene, distancing where possible (although bubbles are seen as the most effective precautionary measure), blended learning where appropriate or necessary (mixture of home/school), staggered starts/breaks/lunches/finishes, enhanced cleaning, PPE where appropriate and more. We are delighted that the new guidance fits perfectly with our preferred scenario for a September return for all children so we will continue to work on finalising this and will contact you personally via email to let you know how this will look for your child. You will receive this before the end of the Summer Term.

Our plans include a staggered Friday finish at school from 1200 noon for all pupils for at least the first half term. There are a variety of reasons for this. Teaching staff are entitled to 10% of their teaching time away from the classroom for their planning, preparation and assessment time (PPA). Normally, we would introduce another staff member to the class to cover for them (for music, PE etc) but we recognise that this would increase the risk of cross contamination so by finishing at Friday lunch, staff can take their PPA on Friday afternoons. Another reason is so that we can give our children the opportunity to continue with their independent learning at home which they have been doing so well.  Blended learning such as this has been proven to work well for most pupils as they are using different skills in different scenarios to suit their needs whilst developing transferable skills for their future. Children will be provided with a curriculum linked activity/inquiry to complete at home on Friday afternoons.

A separate letter has gone to new reception and year one parents at Boskenwyn with regard to their staggered days (Mondays, Tuesdays for reception and Wednesday, Thursday, Friday morning for year one) for the first half term due to numbers being higher there (children will have learning packs to complete at home in this case). If you are a keyworker and require all 4.5 days then please state in your reply as places are limited to keep bubble sizes 20 or below.

Once children have begun in their September bubble, they will not be mixing with any other bubbles, at least for the first half term. This will mean there is no breakfast or after school club during this time. It also means that we do not expect children to attend another school setting on days they are not in school as this will increase the risk of cross contamination. We want to keep all of our staff, children and yourselves as safe as can be.

Attendance from September will be compulsory and the government have stated they will return to the fine system for non-attendance.

School packed lunches will be provided for children who access free school meals and will also be available for all other children on request, all payments must be made via parent pay (instructions on how to do this will be sent out with your personal letter once plans have been finalised).

Although all of the above is not yet confirmed, it is highly likely that this is how school will look in September. I just wanted to give you a heads up for childcare purposes and to help you understand and be confident that we are doing all we can to make a full return to school in September both safe and enjoyable for your children. As soon as plans are confirmed and start/finish times written for each year group, you will receive a personal email relating to your child.

Take care and stay safe

Paula Blackburn