Phased Return to School for pupils at St Matthew’s (Reception, Year 1 and Year 6)
The government announced their aspirations for a phased return to school from 1st June 2020. In the first instance the government guidance states that the phased return is to be prioritised, with the phased return of the youngest pupils in school taking priority. School Leaders with their colleagues are currently being asked to plan for this phased return and how it could possibly be implemented in their school setting.
St Matthew’s school is planning, with the support of South Tyneside Local Authority, towards a phased return that will be safe, manageable and beneficial. Any phased return has to be managed with extreme caution and care so that all necessary protective measures can be put in place. This may mean it becomes necessary to take a more gradual approach than the government has indicated.
We will be splitting the classes (Reception, Year 1 and Year 6) into smaller more manageable groups and the groups will not be in every day. Initially we will be unable to accommodate whole year groups in school together but an aspiration would be to have all the Year 6 groups in school together as we approach the end of the academic year. Whilst in school it is important to understand that the National Curriculum has been suspended at the moment and staff will be working with the groups to ensure there is an element of academic work through the activities they plan to provide.
The planning underway is taking into account all of the following issues;
- Communication with all stakeholders (Parents/Carers, staff, governors, contractors, pupils)
- Health and Safety of all in school – risk assessments carried out in line with South Tyneside Health and Safety guidance.
- Social Distancing for parents/carers (drop off and Collection)
- Social Distancing for pupils
- Social Distancing for staff
- Personal Protection Equipment (PPE)
- Planning for illness on site
- Childcare Provision – continuation
- Cleaning regimes – before, during and after occupation of the building
- Cleaning regimes for all equipment used in school
- Cleaning regimes for pupils’ personal equipment used in school
- Home Learning – continuation for children not in school
- Planning for activities to support the phased return to school
- Staggered timings to ease congestion and aid social distancing
- Provision of meals – more likely to be a packed lunch provided by school.
- Health and medical implications for all in the school community
Government guidance is being updated on a daily basis with the 1st June as an aspirational date set by government. As next week progresses we may be in a better position to publish the finer details of the proposed phased return in relation to St Matthew’s.
There may be some parents of children in Reception Class, Year 1 and Year 6 who will not be sending their children into school during this phased return and that is not a problem.
If your intention at the moment is to definitely keep your child(ren) at home during the phased return please contact school by email: email@example.com in the first instance. This will not be a binding decision and can be changed – we will only be using this return to help us have an idea of the numbers possibly attending in the relevant year groups.
I can assure you that we are setting out to provide a safe, manageable and beneficial phased return for pupils, staff and parents.
God’s Blessings on you all