Yesterday I wrote to you about the government’s announcement affecting the students’ return to school in January. I am writing again today to clarify some arrangements prior to school closing at 3.30pm this afternoon. I will write again, as promised, on the 4th January.
At this point I am unable to share with you details of the mass testing programme. As you can imagine the organisation behind this is complex and will take considerable planning. I would expect the majority of your questions will be related to this, so I ask kindly for your patience and I will share details on the 4th January.
What we do know is this;
- All Year 11 and Year 13 students will return to school as planned on Tuesday 5th January.
- They do not need to have had a test before returning to school.
- Any testing will only happen with parental (or student, as appropriate) consent, the details of which I will share with you on the 4th January.
- All Year 7, 8, 9, 10 and 12 students should remain at home and access remote learning from the 5th January. At the time of writing, this is intended to last for a week only.
- All lessons will be live and students should follow their normal timetable.
- Lessons will be approximately 45 minutes in duration, to enable staff and students to have a break from their computer/device screens.
- Students of critical workers or students who are considered to be vulnerable, will be the only students from Years 7, 8, 9, 10 and 12 who will be on site. These students will access the same live lessons as their peers and therefore will have access to computer rooms, in year group bubbles. I will provide further details regarding equipment they will need, lunch arrangements, transport and uniform requirements etc. on the 4th January.
The next steps for us are to establish who will be requiring on-site provision from the 5th January in Years 7, 8, 9 and 10. We can identify and support those students who may be considered vulnerable but we are unable to identify ourselves which students fall under the category of ‘critical worker children’. At this point we need your help please. If your child needs on-site provision because there is no adult at home who can look after them due to their ‘critical worker’ status, please check your emails from school and complete the short form that is linked to the communication. This should not take you more than a couple of minutes to fill in and return but it is imperative that anyone who requires this provision returns it in order to help us plan effectively.
A form for each child that you have in Year 7, 8, 9, 10 will need to be completed, ONLY if you require on-site provision because you are a critical worker, by 5pm Sunday 3rd January. We have made the assumption that no Year 12 students will need this provision, as children of critical workers. Many families today will get a phone call in addition to receiving this message. If you receive a phone call and speak to a member of staff, there is NO NEED to fill in the form.
Thank you once again for your support. My staff and I have received many emails and phone messages from parents, empathising, sympathising and offering supportive messages. I cannot tell you how welcome they are and how very much we appreciate it.
I wish you all a very happy Christmas.
Mrs J Veal