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IMPORTANT UPDATE RE: EMERGENCY CHILDCARE PROVISION

St. Joseph’s Clydach, St. David’s, Bishop Vaughan, St. Joseph’s Cathedral School, St. Illtyd’s Friday 27th March 2020

 

Dear Parent/Carer,

IMPORTANT UPDATE RE: EMERGENCY CHILDCARE PROVISION

 

As you are aware, our schools have, over the last week, been re-purposed to provide emergency childcare for key workers who are now supporting essential services throughout this national crisis. All educational provision has been suspended to allow for this. These provisions are called Emergency Childcare Hubs. Our cluster – the five Catholic schools across the city - is proud to be supporting those providing essential services such as healthcare. All five schools have been open throughout the last week in order to support our emergency worker parents, even though each cluster of schools across the city has only been required to offer two settings as hubs. This decision was taken for the first week due to our recognition of the potential issues that emergency worker parents might face were we to move, with immediate effect, to two settings.

 

On careful analysis of those requiring and entitled to this emergency provision, our schools feel that it is appropriate to phase this provision towards becoming a three setting provision. Following all of the advice available, we are mindful that any further reduction of settings at this stage, e.g. to two settings, may increase the numbers of people in contact on any one site.

Our priority is to keep all children and young people safe, and by extension, you, their families, as well as those of the staff – and indeed the staff themselves who will be in contact with the children accessing this provision. We must be mindful that Government guidelines are that gatherings no larger than two people who are not from the same household are prohibited because of the risks presented. While we are not able, of course, to operate the Emergency Childcare Hubs in this way, we nevertheless are able to ensure appropriate physical distancing and following of the health and safety guidance received if we operate from three hubs in the weeks to come.

 

From Monday 30th March, the Emergency Childcare Hubs will be located at:  Bishop Vaughan Catholic Comprehensive School For Bishop Vaughan pupils aged 11-14, plus any siblings in Years 5 or 6 for whom it is easier to attend Bishop Vaughan than separate settings

 

 St. Joseph’s Cathedral Primary School For pupils from any of the Catholic primary schools aged 3-11, plus any siblings from Bishop Vaughan for whom it is easier to attend the primary school hub

 

 St. Illtyd’s Primary School For pupils from any of the Catholic primary schools aged 3-11, plus any siblings from Bishop Vaughan for whom it is easier to attend the primary school hub Please note: Parents who have already booked provision at St. David’s Catholic Primary School for the week commencing Monday 30th March can continue to access this; their Emergency Childcare Hub will merge with the other provisions after this point.

 

We would ask you, if at all possible, to use the Emergency Childcare Request Booking Form which for all of the hubs is accessible here:

 

https://www.bishopvaughan.co.uk/forms

 

This will allow us to ensure that there is sufficient provision. We thank parents for their understanding regarding the access and entitlement to these provisions. The restrictions around these are entirely based on the fact that all advice to us states that the safest place for your child is at home. In practical terms, every additional person with whom your family has contact presents a risk to you at this time.

 

Our priority is, therefore, to ensure that these Emergency Childcare Hubs operate only for those currently involved in the critical work to present loss of life in our communities, and even then, only for the hours in which they are carrying out this work and where there is no safer option available to them in terms of the care of their children. Any non-essential use of this provision increases the risk to the health of your own child and that of the whole community. As this challenging situation and the circumstances surrounding it are constantly changing, there will be regular updates and news provided to you whenever possible. Bishop Vaughan’s website will provide these updates and news, as well as links to any specific information on the websites of all of the Catholic primary schools.

 

You will find the school website here: https://www.bishopvaughan.co.uk/news and can follow the school on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/Bishop_Vaughan. As a group of schools dedicated to ensuring the wellbeing of your children throughout this most difficult period, we assure you of our commitment to supporting you in the very best ways that we can and we thank you for your understanding and support in this exceptionally challenging and constantly evolving situation. With our prayers for you and your families throughout this time, as always -

 

Yours faithfully,

 

Mrs. Pole, Mrs. Heald, Mrs. Stack, Mr. Lewis and Miss Richards Headteachers of Bishop Vaughan, St. Joseph’s Cathedral School, St. Joseph’s Clydach, St. Illtyd’s and St. David’s Schools.

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