Letter to Parents – 13th March 2020
I would like to tell you about the plans we have in place in our school to keep our community safe and to continue your child’s education during the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
The government has moved the country into what they have called the ‘delay phase’.
At present schools are advised to stay open. This is what we shall be doing for now.
At the same time, we are preparing in case the situation changes again and we have to close or partially close our school.
Children should not come into school if they are unwell. Please stay at home for seven days if you have either a high temperature or a new continuous cough. This will help to protect others in your community while you are infectious. Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital with mild symptoms. You do not need to contact NHS 111 to tell them you’re staying at home. The NHS will not be testing people who are self-isolating with mild symptoms. Please report your child’s absence to the school in the usual way. Advice on staying at home (self isolation)
What we are doing as a school:
– Keeping ourselves informed through the Public Health website www.gov.uk/coronavirus
– Maintaining high standards of hygiene.
– Speaking to all our students and explaining how to stay safe and how to have the best chance of avoiding catching or spreading the virus.
– Reminding students of the importance of hand washing
– Encouraging staff to give reassuring messages and manage their own anxiety professionally as we know that young people can pick up on adult anxiety
– Explaining what the coronavirus is … including the message that most people who get the virus do not get seriously ill or die from it
– Explaining that worry and anxiety are a normal part of life and provided some ideas for how to manage worry such as talking to someone or switching off any upsetting or worrying news or social media
-Being clear that any jokes, banter or unkindness about someone who is or could be in isolation or ill from the coronavirus or other illness is not acceptable
– Being clear that our school is a welcoming and inclusive where we aim for everyone to be kept as safe as possible.
– Responding to government advice to schools to cancel overseas trips. We are looking into how this will affect some of our planned trips and will have more information shortly or details of any cancellations.
Your child’s education
If we reach a time when we have to close the school or part of the school we have contingency plans in place.
We recognize that a school closure will impact differently on all of us. And we acknowledge that Children and families will face a variety of situations and challenges.
During a school closure students will be provided with learning to do at home. Staff will set work according to a timetable that we will send out. The timetable will identify the subjects that students will be set work for on each day of the week.
Years 7, 8 and 9 will be set work for 3 subjects per day. Years 10 and 11 will receive options work and 2 core subjects per day. All students will be encouraged to spend 30 minutes reading per day.
Each morning students will receive an email detailing the work that has been set for that day. The emails will be sent between 8:00 and 9:00am. Students without access to emails, a computer or an online connection will be provided with a hard copy workbook.
The school has high expectations of all students and during school closure students will be encouraged to complete all work set. However, health and wellbeing are paramount and we appreciate that the level of work that might be undertaken by a child will reflect the situation and circumstances at home.
For children with special educational needs (SEN) we realise this will have an impact on how Education Health and Care Plans are delivered. Extra attention will be given to meeting the individual needs of children and young people with SEN and their families in the event of school closure or partial school closure.
If there is partial closure of the school due to staffing shortages, Year 11 students will take priority because of their GCSE exams.
We continue to work closely with Brighton & Hove City Council, Public Health England and the Department for Education. We will keep you informed of updates.
This is an unusual situation, and we will do all we can to keep you informed as the situation develops. Thank you for helping us look after everyone in the school community and for understanding the unique challenges we are facing.