Opening of School in September 2020 – Safety information
Dear Parents and Carers
Planning for September 2020
Following the Government’s announcement earlier this month, regarding September returns for all pupils, we are making plans to facilitate all groups again to start next academic year in all of the schools within Ironstone Academy Trust. These plans will be created by the Head teacher of each school, in consultation with their staff. We await further guidance from the Government on the methodology we should employ in this planning. When our plans are complete, we will continue to share them with each school’s respective community via their website. This update will encompass information such as class ratios, social distancing and school meals.
While we can see the positive intent in the Government’s continuing easing of lockdown measures, at the moment each of our schools will ensure we continue to adhere to sensible distancing and strict hand hygiene measures to maintain the reduction in the infection rate.
Attendance and Learning at Home and at School
The Government has made clear its expectation that all pupils should return to school at the start of term. We hope to support this by making the arrangements to safeguard your children clear and communicating promptly any amendments that we make to our organisation. All our staff will work with you to encourage your child to return to school in the new term especially if they are worried or have concerns. Please speak to Miss Lawrence in the office if you have specific concerns regarding attendance; you should contact school to make an appointment to do so.
There may be times when we have to close school to a group or bubble of pupils. Our organisation is such that this should be limited to individual bubbles; any decision to close would be made following advice from Public Health England and will be communicated promptly. The school has made arrangements so that if a bubble closes, work for pupils will be available via ‘Seesaw’ immediately. The response from many of our families in respect to supporting learning at home has been inspiring. Staff have continued to contact the families of children who have been less well engaged and offered additional support to them. We have made arrangements to augment our offer to families with some interactive learning opportunities, which allow children in school and at home to share the same experience. This is supported by paper-based resources that are shared alongside the digital resources available on the school website and/ or SeeSaw/ MarvellousMe.
Our school has shared the term dates with you and these are available on the school website http://normanby.ironstoneacademy.org.uk/term-dates/ please make sure you are aware of when we are holding our training days.
After School Clubs
When pupils return in September, we have decided to suspend all after school clubs. This decision will be reviewed at the end of September.
Sunshine Club will continue to operate daily, there are additional considerations that will impact upon the organisation of children within the setting. Parents should be aware that the children who attend Sunshine Club will at times mix with pupils from other age group bubbles. As you would expect, enhanced cleaning and hand washing regimes will be followed. For the first two weeks of term, the breakfast offer will be limited to a cereal bar and piece of fruit, this will be reviewed and parents updated before the third week of term.
Mr Carl Faulkner, Executive Head Teacher & CEO Ironstone Academy Trust
Mrs Kathryn Pentney, Head of School
When will my child go back to school?
Tuesday 1st September is a Professional Development Day for staff. They will receive updated training on PPE and the policies that need to be in place for the new year; these will be amended in respect of the Governments developing guidance.
All children will start back on Wednesday 2nd September.
How will you maintain ‘social distancing’ in September?
Only one adult per family allowed on site.
Visitors into the school building by appointment only.
Guidance states that children in primary schools do not need to social distance, but adults do.
Children will be taught in class groups within a year group. This means that they will be in these groups within school but may mix in some instances within their Year group.
Play areas may be demarcated outside so that children from Year groups know where they can play.
How will dropping off and picking up work?
Please be aware that you will not be able to speak to your child’s teacher. You will need to make an appointment with the office or pass messages to the office, preferable by phone. Emails can be used if a less urgent message or response is required.
There is only one person allowed in the office reception area at a time. There is a box area marked out. Others should wait outside. No scooters or bikes to be on the school site.
Please be aware of social distancing rules on and around our site. It is important you follow timings strictly and leave site as soon as you can to avoid congestion. There is a one-way system for parents and carers accessing site for drop offs for children between FS2 and Y6. 2YO and Nursery children will be dropped off and collected from the Nursery gate. Please follow the instructions to help us manage the numbers of people flowing through site.
The usual crossing patrol will be in operation from 8:30-9:00am before school and 3:00-3:30pm after school.
Is there a timetable I can stick on my fridge?
Please see separate timetable for movement on site.
How will you maintain hygiene with so many children on site?
Children will continue to need to wash their hands: on arrival, before they leave and throughout the day.
Hand sanitiser and tissues are available in all classrooms.
Cleaning routines will be increased again so that there is a continuous clean to prioritise touch points throughout the day.
How will the classes be organised in September?
You should have already received information that all children have moved to their new teacher in their current class group.
Passports to their new year have been collected or sent home ready for September. Please bring this back to school on the first day back.
Children should wear school uniform.
Children in Years 1-6
Following government guidance, when children sit at tables, they will be sat facing forwards to the teacher.
Teachers will take learning outside where appropriate.
Children should not bring anything from home except a packed lunch (if not opting for a school lunch) and a water bottle. If your child is bringing a packed lunch, then they must bring it in a plastic bag or throw away wrapper as children will not be allowed to bring packed lunch bags to school
Nursery, Reception and the 2-Year-Old room.
Children in Early Years will not be allocated tables to sit at. They will work in provision areas, at tables and outside.
The reception classes will work in two halves, with each half working separately from each other. Teachers will minimise contact through groupings and use of the space.
Soft furnishings have been removed and equipment will be regularly wiped clean.
Children should not bring anything from home except a water bottle and a coat. Only bring a packed lunch in a plastic or disposable wrapper if they are not having their allocated school meal.
Will my child need a PE kit for September?
In September we will ask that you don’t bring PE kits into school. This means we can minimise transmissions between home and school.
On the day that children do PE, they should wear a white polo shirt (or T shirt) and normal school jumper, adding plain navy or black leggings/joggers instead of a skirt/pinafore/ trousers for example, and trainers instead of school shoes.
As the children will be outdoors as much as possible, they should also have a coat/jacket they can move in easily or a plain navy or black hoody to wear over their uniform top should they need this outside.
There will only be limited opportunities for indoor PE in the Autumn Term.
What lunchtime provision will be available?
To adhere to Government guidelines on minimising group interaction, lunches will be served on a rota basis. There will be three rotating options. We are grateful to our caterers, Mellor’s, for their support and positive attitude towards solving this challenging issue.
All children will receive equal access, over a three-week block, to a daily rota of meals.
1. Children will be visiting the dining hall for a hot meal
2. A Grab bag style lunch / sandwiches/Fruit/yoghurt/ in their classroom
3. A takeaway style lunch – jacket potato or Pizza in their classroom
There will be a timetable for this shared via Parent Mail, and children will be asked their meal choice for option 2 and 3 at the end of the previous day. Lunch in the first week will be a grab bag packed lunch.
Reminder, all children from FS2 to Year 2 receive a Universal Free School Meal. From Year 3 to 6, this is a paid option. Contact the office if you think you may be entitled to free school meals. School meals can be paid for via the usual Parent Pay.
How will the school contact me, if it needs to?
It remains essential we have your most up to date details so please make sure your details are up to date with school by using the SIMs Lite app. Please see the office for details.
How will contact be minimised on the school site?
Please be aware that you will not be able to speak to your child’s teacher; you will need to make an appointment with the office or pass messages to the office, preferable by phone. Emails can be used if a less urgent message or response is required.
There is only one person allowed in the office reception area at a time. There is a box area marked out. Others should wait outside.
Please be aware of social distancing rules on and around our site. It is important you follow timings strictly and leave site as soon as you can to avoid congestion. There is a one-way system for parents and carers accessing site for drop offs for children between FS2 and Y6. Please follow the instructions to help us manage the numbers of people flowing through site.
Our barrier, to keep our site safe from cars, will operate as usual between 8:15am and 4:15pm. Please do not walk under the barrier.
What will the school curriculum look like?
Our priorities during the first half term will be:
- Welcoming the children back to school, ensuring they feel safe.
- Establishing school routines, rules and expected behaviours.
- During the first half term, teachers will prioritise the teaching of reading, writing and maths where necessary but not to the exclusion of our planned Normanby broad and balanced curriculum.
- Starting the curriculum relevant to the age group we are teaching with catch up provision where children have essential gaps.
Some activities, such as singing in a choir, cannot take place.
We are not allowed to hold large assemblies.
How will reading books be organised?
Children will choose, or be allocated, books at the start of the week and return them on Fridays. These books will be kept in quarantine when returned to school, for the Government advised period of time, before they are allowed to be used by others. Other online activities will be shared via Seesaw to support reading at weekends.
Will Homework still be provided?
We will continue to use Seesaw, as parents have all responded positively to its implementation.
Homework will now be set online, because we have been told to limit the number of items moving between home and school, but there will remain a balance of activities for children and families to look at, or work on together.
During Autumn Term this homework will make use of the platforms already available to us such as: Times Table Rock Stars and Spelling Shed.
This will mean Seesaw and Microsoft Teams can be used to set the work and respond to it and can be used quickly to set home learning, as it has during this period of lockdown, should we need to adapt to this situation again in the future.
Can my child walk to school unaccompanied?
As school is returning to full opening, all years must be accompanied to and from school by an adult. Only Year 6 may be able to walk to and from school independently with parental permission from the second week of term.
Year 6 pupils will only be allowed to walk to and from school independently once permission has been given using the booking system on the school website.
This will be reviewed on the 1st October.
Will children be able to attend Sunshine Club?
Sunshine club will be available before and after school for children in Reception to Year 6 and normal charges will apply. Breakfast will be available but under current guidelines, we are providing a yoghurt or cereal bar at parent’s request. Please see Mrs Burke for charges. Sunshine Club is available from 8am and closes at 5:30pm – Monday to Thursday (to allow for sufficient cleaning to take place for the next day) and 5pm on Friday. The Government guidance states that children from different groups can mix, however at Normanby this will be provided for children within age phases where possible.
There will be no other before or after school activities in school (apart from Sunshine club) until further notice.
Thank you for taking the time to read all of the information in this letter. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us after looking on our website for all the safety documents related to opening the school fully in September.