COVID RESPONSE UPDATE – 17 December
CATMOSE PRIMARY WILL BE OPEN IN FULL FROM JANUARY 4TH
This page will be updated to reflect the current government advice and guidance around the pandemic. It was last updated on Thursday 17 December to include guidance around track and trace over the Christmas break and to give further details about our approach to remote learning for when it is required. Our approach is informed by the guidance that issued by the government regarding how schools should respond to the pandemic, this can be read here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/guidance-for-schools-coronavirus-covid-19
What should I do if my child has symptoms of Covid-19?
If your child is exhibiting symptoms of Covid-19 you should arrange for them to be tested. If the test if negative they should return to school, if it is positive you need to inform the Primary immediately email: firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can take appropriate action. Once informed we will track all staff and pupils who have been in close proximity of the child (generally defined as closer than 2m for 15 mins or more) and will require all those that are identified to isolate for 10 days.
We will continue to monitor emails and engage in track and trace within Primary up to and including Christmas Eve. Parents should therefore continue to check their registered email address in case we need to make contact to inform you of the need to isolate for 10 days as a result of being in closed contact with a confirmed positive case.
What should my child expect from immediate remote education in the first day or two of pupils being sent home?
All work will be set via Class Dojo, acting as the Virtual Classroom. Parents can access this through the app on their phone or through the website. If you need further support please email email@example.com.
Following the first few days of remote education, will my child be taught broadly the same curriculum as they would if they were in school?
Yes. It is our intention to deliver the same curriculum as we would at the Primary. If it’s appropriate to do so, the order of some topics will be moved about so that the work set at home is accessible and allows students to continue to make progress. Students will however, over the course of the year, cover all of the content we intended to within our planned curriculum. For more details of our curriculum please click here where you will find further detail about what we teach in each subject, broken down by year.
How long can I expect work set by the school to take my child each day?
We expect pupils to work for just over 4 hours per day on classwork. We will follow your child’s normal timetable through any period of remote learning and the usual pattern of the working day will be followed: English, Phonics (KS1) Grammar (KS2) Mathematics then topic (Foundation Subjects).
How will my child access any online remote education you are providing?
They may use any device capable of accessing the internet. All work will be accessible through Class Dojo, with videos recorded by staff to explain key skills and understanding. In addition live lessons and class catch up sessions will be offered using Microsoft Teams which is available as an app on mobile phone platforms, windows or MacOS. You can find further information on how to download Microsoft Teams here.
If my child does not have digital or online access at home, how will you support them to access remote education?
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be able to offer you support and advice. Paper packs of home learning activities can also be provide to support home learning. We will do what we can to help.
What happens in my child’s lessons if a member of staff needs to isolate as a result of Covid-19 symptoms?
If they are well enough, then they will be set work on Class Dojo and if appropriate, join the lesson virtually using Teams. An additional member of staff will be deployed to support the teacher delivering the virtual lesson from home. On site staff will be deployed to provide cover.
What are your expectations for my child’s engagement and the support that we as parents and carers should provide at home?
Our expectations for remote learning are the same as they would be at School.
We know from the last lockdown that pupils who established good routines early found working from home more manageable, please therefore discuss with your child expectations around getting up in the morning, attending lessons, completing work in good time and being proactive in seeking help if they are struggling with anything. We are very mindful of pupils’ wellbeing and the additional pressure of needing to isolate. Class teachers will use Class Dojo to engage with pupils and keep in contact.
How will you check whether my child is engaging with their work and how will I be informed if there are concerns?
We will monitor your child’s work using Class Dojo portfolios and contact parents directly if we are concerned. Teachers will be checking work is submitted on time, marking it and providing feedback.
We also encourage parents to contact teachers directly using email (addresses are available from the last report home) if you have any concerns about the work being too hard, too easy, too much or too little.
How will you assess my child’s work and progress?
Teachers will mark and follow up with additional support with pupils who have not completed work, or, their work is below their usual standard. We will still follow our published assessment calendar of check-points and key assessments, the results of which will be reported home in the usual way. We will also continue to offer our usual progress evening albeit online so that you can discuss your child with their teacher.
How will you work with me to help my child who needs additional support from adults at home to access remote education?
For those pupils who are working from home and need additional support, support will be made available via Class Dojo by the class teacher.
If my child is not in school because they are self-isolating or are ill for another reason, how will their remote education differ from the approaches described above?
Prior to lockdown, classwork was not routinely set for pupils who were absent. However, in order to keep pupils’ learning on track as a result of any absence we have changed this approach. In addition to prep, classwork will be set using Class Dojo so that those who are absent, whether COVID–19 related or not, will be able to do their classwork as well as prep, if they are well enough. If pupils struggle with the work or need further help, please email the teacher directly in the usual way but be aware that teachers are unlikely to be able to respond immediately because of their usual teaching commitments. Pupils should move onto another piece of work until they receive the help they need.
SUSTAINING OUR ETHOS
Will extra-curricular clubs be offered?
We are gradually reintroducing clubs once we are satisfied that our risk assessments are robust enough. We have offered breakfast and afterschool club from the start of this year and will continue to do so. We will notify parents of new opportunities using email and xpressions in the usual way. Please also follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram as we will use this platform to keep our community informed of events and to celebrate our pupils’ achievements.
In light of the announcement made on Saturday 31 October by the Prime Minister, we have reviewed our school Covid-19 Risk Assessment and will be making the following changes.
Introduction of requirements to wear face coverings
We have endeavoured to maintain as normal a school experience for our staff and pupils since our full return in September, but with community infection rates increasing leading to the announcement of a national lockdown, we need to take additional measures to further reduce the risks for our community.
We will therefore from Thursday 5 November until the end of the end of the national lockdown on 2 December require all parents, carers and older siblings (who are 11+) to wear a face covering when entering the school site. This includes the playgrounds for dropping off and collecting children before and after school.
Staff will wear a face covering when they need to be closer to pupils during the school day. We will keep these requirements and other aspects of our risk assessment under regular review and will issue updates as needed.
I hope you and your family are well. This is a long post but a vital one for you and your child to read so that we are all clear about what is necessary in the new academic year to allow a safe return to the Primary.
The government has confirmed that they expect all pupils to return to compulsory education on site in the new academic year. Their guidance can be read using the link here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/guidance-for-full-opening-schools
We are aiming to make the return to School as normal as possible but inevitably the current situation around Covid-19 means our usual way of working is not always possible. I want to outline in as much detail as we can at this point our plans for the new academic year and I will keep you updated if anything should change between now and the summer.
All pupils, unless they have permission from the School, should return wearing full School uniform from Wednesday 26 August. If you have concerns regarding your child returning you should make contact using the email address: email@example.com.
Structure of the day
The start of the new term starts on Wednesday 26 August.
|Class Group||Parent handover am||Times In||Parent handover pm||Times Out|
|Ash Class||KS2 Playground – to hand over at Ash Class door||9.15||KS2 Playground – to hand over at Ash Class door||3.30
|Beech Class||KS1 Playground to be met by teachers to walk to outdoor area gates.||9.00||Parents to wait by each class outside are gates.||3.45|
|Oak Class||KS2 playground.
When whistle is blown, pupils to leave parents line up by classroom outside doors.
|9.00||Parent to wait on KS2. Pupils will walk to parents from class doors.||3.50|
|Silver Birch Class|
Wrap Around Care
We are able to offer breakfast and after school club, to a small consistent group, each day. Places MUST be booked with me via firstname.lastname@example.org WEEKLY in advance and paid for via Parent Pay in advance. Children not booked will not be able to access the care as we will need to ensure groupings are consistent.
This care will be held in the main hall with a table for each Key Stage group to maintain social distancing. Breakfast will be served at breakfast club with a light afternoon snack at afterschool club. This will continue to be staffed by our school staff.
Times for breakfast club: 8.00am until the start of school.
Time for afterschool club: from the end of the school day to 5.00pm.
Please note the change in provision times for the autumn term.
Lessons will be returning to normal for each year group, following a full curriculum. Interventions for gaps in learning will be in place for each year group. A focus upon emotional health and well-being will be important as we return to full time schooling. Apart from in Ash Class, classrooms will be set out to ensure all desks are facing forward. Each pupil will have their own pot with pencils, pens etc to keep sharing of resources to a minimum in each class. Teachers and teaching assistants will be stay at the front of the class to sustain 2 metre distance from pupils where possible.
Our usual high expectation of pupils remain. We know some pupils will have fallen out of their usual good routines and may struggle initially, however it is vital that for the safety of all that staff instructions are followed. Any pupil who fails to follow the instruction of staff, particularly when it would put another person at risk will be removed from lessons.
We require that pupils and staff clean their hands regularly, including when they arrive at Primary, when they return from breaks, when they change rooms and before and after eating. We strongly recommend therefore that pupils have their own sanitiser that they use regularly.
We are continuing to take the ‘catch-it’, ‘bin-it’ and ‘kill-it’ approach.
We are keen to involve pupils in as much sport as possible and sport lessons will take place within class groups. We will not be offering contact sports for the foreseeable future, instead we will be starting with sports such as athletics which lend themselves to social distancing. Our sporting clubs will not be on offer during the Autumn Term.
Visiting the Primary
Wherever possible we will be avoiding asking parents to enter the building. This will include for individual meetings or for events such as parents evenings or performances. If you are asked to visit the building the procedures to keep everyone safe will be discussed and agreed before you can enter.
Parents should therefore not enter the Primary building without an agreed appointment as staff will not be able to meet you on an ad hoc basis. If you need to contact us about a general query please email email@example.com or phone us using 01572 772583. If you need to contact a teacher please use their email address.
It is not possible to expect pupils to remain 2 metre apart in School. In lessons even 1 metre will prove challenging in classes which are usually 30 in size. We know though that the risks of Covid-19 to children are small, for many they display no symptoms and for the vast majority only mild ones.
In order to safely manage a full return, we are following the principle that minimising movement between different groups of pupils is preferable whenever possible to minimise risk. We have used this social bubble model successfully throughout the lockdown period and are confident that similar principles albeit with larger numbers of pupils will work.
The use of class based social bubbles will impact on many aspects of how we work as a School. Pupils will remain with their class group throughout the day which has been structured to minimise mixing with pupils from other classes. We have assigned playtime areas and have organised a staggered lunchtime.
In the autumn term we will be avoiding any large gathering of pupils including for assembly and performances. There will be no off-site trips for the autumn term.
The use of facemasks and other PPE
If individuals wish to wear their own plain facemask they may do so however. If a facemask is worn care must be taken not to touch the front of it during use or when removing as this increases the risk of transmission. Once removed, hands must be washed immediately and disposable masks binned. If the mask is reused it must be placed in a plastic bag that can be taken home.
Further advice can be found by reading the following government guidance: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/safe-working-in-education-childcare-and-childrens-social-care/safe-working-in-education-childcare-and-childrens-social-care-settings-including-the-use-of-personal-protective-equipment-ppe
What happens if there is an outbreak?
If there is an outbreak of Covid-19 at School, we will follow government advice regarding how it is communicated home, how pupils and parents are informed and what steps must be taken as a result of any outbreak. Our first priority will remain the health and wellbeing of our community.
If we need to ask pupils to isolate, we will move back to a distance learning model for those affected in order to ensure pupils can continue to keep up with their studies.
To download Mrs Jackson’s letter regarding our approach to providing remote learning in the event of a local or class lockdown due to COVID 19 during the academic year 2020/21 please click here.
For Frequently Asked Question please click here.
To download Mrs Jackson’s letter to parents on 15 October please click here.