Return to School - What do you need to know?

Date: 17th Aug 2020 @ 12:37pm

Back to School – only two weeks away now!

 

As we prepare for the return to school, I thought that now would be a good time to share with you the school’s plans.  As I am sure you will appreciate, at this time each school has its own unique challenges and we have thought long and hard about our re-opening plans. They adhere as closely as possible to Government guidance but consider our own school setting and our children. We have had the opportunity to run these systems with three bubbles before the Summer Holidays and they were very successful. 

There is a lot of information, so in this message I am sharing only the day to day information I feel you need to know to get ready for school.  I have attached a much longer version of this information which explains fully the approaches to social distancing, hand washing and general safety. Please read that.  It is quite long but I but I hope it covers all the questions you may have.

I urge you to read this information, talk about it with your children and any other adults who will be bringing the children to school or dropping them off.  Each member of our school family needs to play their important part by following this guidance and supporting school staff by complying with our plan. Our goal is to do our very best to keep everybody safe and healthy.

 

What will the class groups look like?

For the safety of our children and staff it is important for us to keep classes well managed. We have therefore decided to organise the school into three ‘bubbles’. The bubbles will be structured as follows…..

Bubble One will include children from Class 1 and Class 2.  Whist in class, they will operate independently – Class 1 forming Little Bubble 1 and Class 2 forming Big Bubble 1.  However, as they are all part of the one bigger bubble they can all use the same toilets and sink areas and this allows for staff (when necessary) to work within both areas of KS1 and provide more adults to supervise playtimes, first aid and lunchtimes - where they are needed most with the youngest children.

Bubble Two will be children from Class 3.

Bubble Three will be the children of Class 4.

All children will be in school at the same time, with the same class teacher and a teaching assistant wherever possible. Each group will be in their own designated classroom throughout the school day (limiting movement around the building) and playing outside together whenever possible. The group will have lunch together and they will not mix directly with any of the other groups during the school day. The purpose of the bubbles is to ensure contact, mixing and movement are minimised.

Whilst each group will be socially distanced from others, we cannot guarantee social distancing within the groups due to the nature of children.  Our teaching staff will put in place measures to significantly reduce social interactions by providing individual workspaces and equipment. We would expect all families of children attending school to support us in our joint effort to socially distance ourselves when out of school in line with Government Guidance.  Please understand that families not adhering to this guidance are putting our whole school family at risk.

Arriving at and leaving school:

  • Children in Bubble 1 (Class 1 and 2) should arrive at school and wait – socially distanced on the front playground.  They should be on the yard for 8:40.  At 8:45 a member of staff will come up to the playground and invite the children into school.  Class 1 children will walk down the steps to their classroom.  Parents must stay at the top of the steps. Class 2 children will be collected by a staff member from this playground and taken around to the side door next to class 2. 
  • At pick up time – 3pm for Bubble 1 – the same procedure will happen but in reverse.  Staff will return children to the top playground.
  • We ask that, although it is not compulsory, you wear a face mask while waiting on the playground.  Please remain socially distant during this time and try to keep the time you are waiting around to a minimum.
  •  
  • Children in Bubble 2 (Class 3) should arrive at school at 8:40 and enter via the gate where the barn used to stand.  Parents are asked to leave them here and a member of staff will be waiting to lead the children into school. Please do not wait around in this area. Class 3 children will walk around the school building and enter by the side door near their classroom.  They will then sanitise hands before entering the classroom.
  • At pick up time – 3:10pm for Bubble 2 – the same procedure will happen but in reverse.  Staff will return children to the gate area where they can be picked up.
  • We ask that, although it is not compulsory, you wear a face covering while waiting near the gate.  Please remain socially distant during this time and try to keep the time you are waiting around to a minimum.

 

  • Children in Bubble 3 (Class 4) should arrive at school at 8:40 and enter via the gate at the top of the steps. A member of staff will be waiting there and will lead the children into school.  Class 4 children will walk around the school building and enter by the door at the back of their classroom.  They will then sanitise hands on entering the classroom. We ask that children in Bubble 4 either arrive on their own or parents do not wait around at the top of the steps.
  • At pick up time – 3:10pm for Bubble 3 – the same procedure will happen but in reverse.  Staff will return children to the gate area where they can be picked up.
  • We ask that, although it is not compulsory, you wear a face covering while waiting near the gate.  Please remain socially distant during this time and try to keep the time you are waiting around to a minimum.

 

PLEASE DO NOT BE LATE AS THIS WILL MEAN THE WHOLE CLASS WILL HAVE TO WAIT – POSSIBLY IN THE RAIN - FOR YOU TO ARRIVE. 

  • Please be mindful of the parents dropping children off at the pre-school on school property and maintain the 2-metre distancing wherever possible.
  • Children should enter the playground gate independently when possible. There will be staff on hand to support and encourage.
  • Parents must leave school immediately maintaining a safe distance between themselves and other parents. If you need to leave a message, please speak to the adult on duty or call the school office.
  • Classroom doors will be open on arrival and children will enter classes straight away.
  • Once children have been dropped off parents should not gather at entrance gates or doors, or enter the school building
  • We ask parents to be mindful of their children’s allocated times. The office will not be open for late arrivals.
  • Children should arrive at school with one adult only accompanying them.

Taking items home and bringing items to school

Both staff and children are discouraged from bringing any additional items from home into the school environment unless these are absolutely necessary and are appropriately sanitised before being used. Unfortunately, there can be no treats for birthday celebrations brought into school at this time.

Items should be transferred in a suitable bag and taken directly to a classroom or dedicated area at home. Children and parents should make sure they wash their hands and surfaces, before and after handling any items from school at home. Please note that physical letters will not be sent home at this time. All communications will be on the school website or sent to you via email.

Children’s Water Bottles

Children are asked to bring their own named water bottle which will be sent home each night. Please can you ensure that your child’s bottle is cleaned and refilled for the next school day. Only your child will handle his/her bottle. Facilities to refill bottles in school are limited but are available when required. These will be sanitised daily.

Other Equipment

  • Children should only bring themselves, a water bottle, coat and lunch to school with them.  All equipment – pens, pencils etc will be provided and kept in school. Do not bring any other bag or equipment into school to help us maintain hygiene standards. 
  • Lunch bags will be placed under desks at the start of the day and coats on the back of chairs.  If it is raining and coats are wet provision will be made to store them appropriately.
  • PE kit should be brought in on a Monday and taken home on a Friday.  The rest of the time it will be stored on a peg.
  • Children who are bringing their own packed lunches should bring them in a small bag or lunchbox which will fit under a desk.  This should be taken home every day.

Reading

Children will be allocated school reading books which will be left in school - children should continue to read at home using the Oxford Owls e-books or books from their own book shelves.  Please check the School website for details and links to the Oxford Owls site.  There will be a limited supply of books used in each classroom, children will wash their hands before and after reading them

School Meals

Lancashire Catering Group Kitchen services will be fully resumed. In the Autumn term only packed lunches will be available, which will be eaten within their class bubble. Social distance will be maintained wherever possible and the kitchen staff will be responsible to organising the food and distribution.

The school office will send more information to you regarding this.

 

I hope this information has clarified the basics for you.  As I said earlier, please make sure you read the more detailed document and please encourage your child to follow all of the school rules so we can keep them safe.

I look forward to seeing you all soon – Mr Pugh

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