Dear Parents and Pupils,
I hope you and your families are well and keeping safe in these difficult times. The school has been busy getting ready for the ‘Check in, Catch up and prepare sessions’ for the summer term. The schools’ primary focus for these sessions will be the physical and emotional wellbeing of staff and learners. The purpose of this letter is to give you as much detail as possible regarding our reopening and measures being put in place for staff, pupils, and parents/carers. Please understand that the arrangements proposed for St Joseph’s may differ from other schools so it is not advisable to compare. Each school has different phases of education and constraints in terms of staffing and accommodation and we are all planning for the wellbeing of our own schools and our own situations. We are also aware of the need to be flexible and allow room for change as the situation with Covid19 evolves.
Schools in Swansea will not be open for nursery aged children to attend between 29 June and 24 July.
I realise it is a difficult decision to make about sending your child back to school for these sessions and it is important to take into account this will not be their normal school day experience with different start and finish times and routines.
Before you make this important decision about whether your child will attend the proposed sessions allocated please read the information below very carefully.
I have tried to include as much information as possible for you to make this decision.
§ Nursery children will not return. This is in line with LA guidance. Many parents at this moment in time are unsure, this is perfectly understandable, whatever you decide we will support your decision. It will be helpful to have a final decision by the end of this week (Friday 19th June) in order to plan effectively- a link will be sent to you shortly.
§ Staff have all had training this week regarding Health and Safety. Classrooms are being reorganised and areas are being prepared for the return of your children. However, please be aware and accept that the risk of spreading Covid-19 in the school cannot be totally mitigated.
§ Children do not need to wear their school uniform but could wear summer uniform or gym kit if you wish. Where possible, all pupils are encouraged to change clothing each day and launder clothing when arrived at home.
§ Emergency Childcare provision will continue up until July 24th for children of key worker parents. This childcare is from 8:30am – 3:30pm and is for children whose parents are both key workers this will need to be verified for County. If your child is accessing this provision they
will be able to attend their designated catch up sessions but will not be able to go to child care that day. If pupils can continue to be looked after at home they should do so.
§ All children who attend the school will need a packed lunch, snack and a drink on the day they attend school brought in a disposable bag. Children who are entitled to Free School Meals will also need to bring their own food as BACS payments will be continuing. Pupils should bring their own pencils, pencil cases etc. and should not share with others. No pupil bags will be permitted on the premises and lockers will not be used. Coats if necessary will be hung on your child’s chair. Each child will be allocated a desk and chair. There will be no hot meals available from the canteen. Lunchtimes / playtimes will be reduced times and staggered with groups eating outside if weather permits.
§ Home learning will continue, and teachers will update the class pages with activities. Teachers will be planning very carefully what they will be teaching during this period. Paper will be used instead of normal class books and no work will be taken home by the pupil or teacher. If marking is needed then the children will do it themselves under the direction of the teacher.
§ Be aware and accept that should your child develop symptoms they will need to be collected as soon as possible from the emergency isolation room and yourself and your family will have to self- isolate for the required time as per government guidelines.
§ All pupils will need to be brought to school by your own transport – please park in Coed-Gwilym carpark and observe social distancing at all times. Only one parent should bring the child/ ren up the lane. Please use the facing right hand side to walk up and hold your child’s hand and observe 2 metres distancing from all other parents and pupils. We are still waiting for an update regarding school transport, as soon as we have this information we will share it with you.
§ Your child will be met at the gate and you will be asked if they are symptom free they will then be signed in to confirm this. It is your duty to take your child’s temperature and be aware of the symptoms of Covid 19.
§ Your child will then go their allocated classroom (we are only using the classes in the main school building) entering through the fire exit of each classroom where they will be met by their teacher and asked to sanitise their hands at the door. All children and adults, including staff, must wash their hands-on entry to the school for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. Where possible, young children will be supervised to ensure it is carried out correctly. Hand washing will take place at regular intervals during the day (on arrival, after each activity, before food, after toilet use, and on departure). Staff will ensure that all children are shown the correct way to do this as part of the return induction and thereafter. Information will be displayed in all welfare facilities and classrooms. Staff will encourage pupils not to touch their face. Use a tissue or elbow to cough or sneeze and use bins for tissue waste
§ When you drop off your child you will need to leave the school via the main gate and walk along the opposite side of the lane observing social distancing with other parents at all times.
Pupils will not be allowed out of the school/ setting premises unless collected by an agreed adult at the end of the session. We strongly advise you to go straight to your transport and leave the park premises and do not allow your child to play with other pupils.
§ The same procedure will need to be followed when picking up your child. No staff cars will be allowed to park on the lane to allow for social distancing.
§ Cleaning and disinfecting tables will be undertaken at the start and end of each class session. Each classroom will be provided with appropriate cleaning materials (disinfectant and cloths). Staff will have access to PPE should they need it in a first aid or intimate care situation.
§ Social distancing must be maintained wherever reasonably practicable to reduce the risk of the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Where possible, all classrooms/ settings will have clear markings highlighting learning zones.
§ In the interest of safety, there will be no face to face meetings with parents/ responsible adults and no adults will be allowed into the school building. If necessary, discussions will be made over the telephone.
§ Your child’s group will be allocated alphabetically. If siblings are in on the same day they should arrive at the latest time and earliest pick up time and not separately. You will need to exit the school lane and car park as quickly as possible to allow the next group of pupils to attend/ leave. Groups will be kept small with at most 8 pupils along with staff and cannot be mixed or changed. You will not be able to change groups or days and we cannot have late or early pick up times.
§ Your child will have at most 3 check in sessions with their allocated teacher over the four week but this may reduce.
§ Please be aware due health and safety there are staggered start and finish times.
§ Reception Year 2, 3 and 4 groups (no more than 8 pupils on a given day) will be on the same day and Year 1, 5 and 6 on a separate day
Reception 9.00 am pick up 12.00 pm
Year 2 8.45 am pick up 2.15 pm
Year 3 8.30 am pickup 2.00 pm
Year 4 9.15 am pick up 2.45 pm
Year 1 8.45 am pick up 2.15 pm
Year 5 8.30 am pick up 2.00 pm
Year 6 9.00 am pick up 2. 30 pm
§ The school will be using the website, Twitter and emails to keep you updated.
If your child is not coming in to school there will still be online work shared on HWB. Also a transition video from your child’s new class teacher in September will be posted on HWB. A timetable will be sent tomorrow and then please fill in the link which will be sent to let us know if you wish your child to attend.
Mrs. Juliet Stack