Arrangements for partial reopening from 1st June
As you know, the government has asked us to prepare for a partial re-opening of school in June. We have been busy planning for this and we expect to be able to offer full time provision for Nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 from Monday 1st June. The school experience, however, will be significantly different as we work to minimise risk of infection. I am confident that we have lowered risks with these plans, but it is not possible to eliminate risk entirely.
School will be organised in ‘bubbles’, similar to this school in Denmark.
- Opening and closing times will change slightly to minimise congestion (but only by 5 or 10 minutes). Some groups will be accessing classrooms directly and we won’t be using cloakrooms (no need for Juniors to change shoes)
- Other than Nursery, the returning year groups will be split into three (Reception) or four groups (Y1 and Y6). The maximum children in a group would be fifteen, but we anticipate less than that initially, especially in Y1 and Y6 where there are more groups. If demand is higher than previously indicated, we would need to establish at least one further group in Foundation Stage (Nursery and Reception). Some children will not be with their usual teacher, and a few children will be in groups led by experienced teaching assistants or Nursery Officers. Friendship groups will have been one of the grouping considerations. Children with SEND are typically allocated to the group with their usual teacher.
- The groups, or ‘bubbles’, will have consistent staffing that is not working with other groups of children. The children will not mix with other ‘bubbles’, even at playtime.
- Play times will be in zones of the school grounds. We may rotate the zones for older children on a weekly basis.
- We have made a significant investment in external hand-washing facilities: 40 new warm water taps and long stainless steel sinks in a number of locations. Furthermore, we have even more sanitiser stations across school. Children and staff will wash hands with soap and water as the enter and leave, and/or use sanitiser stations.
- The only staff that will work with more than one group across the week will be school farm staff delivering what is called PPA. This is judged as lower risk as the sessions will be outside and very well spread out in very small groups.
- School meals Nursery to Y1 will be served in the usual dining halls in two sittings. There will be just three children per table: one at each end of one bench, and the other in the centre of the other bench. The children on each table and adjacent places will be from the same bubble and will be served by the same dedicated staff each day. Y6 children may have a packed lunch or school meal and will eat in their classroom. Meals will be brought over in insulated containers from the kitchen.
- Y2-5 key worker (and ‘vulnerable’) schooling will continue to be available, and all this will be sited in the KS2 building. Their meals will be served in the classrooms. Again, lunchtime supervision will be from ‘bubble’ staff or lunch assistants that only work with that one group.
- Classroom staff will perform some anti-viral on-going cleaning of surfaces in the ‘bubble’ during the day, and we will have cleaners on site throughout the day, not just in the evenings. Toys used by our younger children will be cleaned at the end of each day with a detergent solution. Climbing frames/Fort will be sprayed with detergent before and after use, and children will wash hands before and after. Only one ‘bubble’ will have access to these installations in a given week. The tree house will be closed. Any sports equipment used e.g. tennis rackets/balls/cricket bats will be dunked in a detergent solution before being used again.
- Any poorly children will be moved to designated spaces (or into a garden space) whilst we await parents. Staff tending to poorly children may wear appropriate PPE.
- Older children will have their own stationery packs and won’t typically share resources.
- If a child or staff member in a ‘bubble’ were to test positive for COVID, then everyone in that bubble would then need to self-isolate for 14 days: the whole bubble will be off school.
- If parents choose for their child not to attend school under these new arrangements, they are welcome to change their mind later but wouldn’t be able to send their child to school until the following Monday.
- We have identified staff to run a Fun Club type provision. We will not be serving food and it will be largely outside, particularly in the afternoons. If you require this, let us know on the survey. This will be a chargeable service and we would like numbers to be as low as possible. Frankly, although we will continue to follow enhanced hygiene standards, it will not be possible to have fourteen ‘Fun Club’ bubbles (more like four very small groups). More details will be shared with those families that indicate that they need this. If you can avoid the need for before and after school provision, please do!
We will have 3-4 staff in Nursery, led by Mrs Fulton, and we are expecting groups up to 15. We will not allow a child to attend two different settings: for example, we can’t allow mornings in a private nursery or group childminding service, and the afternoon in our school ‘bubble’. Should they need to, Nursery can create extra space in the hall. Nursery will have access to half of the usual EYFS outdoor play space.
Social distancing with 3-4 year olds is extremely difficult. We are expecting reduced numbers and we will try to spend lots of time outdoors. Carpet sessions will be staggered for smaller groups. We will endeavour to limit the numbers of children in the different areas of provision and practise lots of hand-washing. Soft furnishings and fabric based toys will be typically removed as they are difficult to clean. There is likely to be a reduction of resources available generally.
There will be three groups: in RP, RB and in the Children’s Centre. The groups will be led by the two teachers and by Mrs Myers who is very familiar to all the children. There will be other staff too with each group. The CC group will have access to half of the usual EYFS outdoor space and could extend into some of the hall if needed. The classroom groups will use the school grounds in front of their usual entrance as their outside space, with a rope separating the area into 2 distinct zones.
These groups will be a maximum of 15. If more than three quarters of the cohort choose to attend, we will have to create a fourth space. Again, social distancing with young children will be a challenge, and we can’t guarantee that each child will always be 2m from another, but we will have enhanced hygiene regimes in place.
There will be four Y1 bubbles: the teachers in their usual classrooms, and then a Y1 TA-led group in 2La and Y2 teachers Mrs Wilson and Mrs Loveridge in 2Lo with some children from the class that they are due to receive in September. The desks in these Y1 groups will be separated and the curriculum will be a little more formal than is typical for Y1: more time at desks, and less on the carpet or ‘Areas of Provision’. The staff are encouraged to maximise the use of outdoor learning wherever practical and reasonable.
These year groups are not included in the partial re-opening. We will continue to provide a Key Worker/Vulnerable children provision for these children as we have for the past two months, but they will need to follow the ‘bubble’ provision outlined above.
Year 2 will move to the juniors and be based in 3C with Mr Durkin and Mrs Kenny. Planning will be overseen by the Y2 teachers.
Year 3 and 4 will continue in a ‘double bubble’ with Miss Ellis or Mr Beevers. If numbers rise significantly, this group will separate.
Year 5 will be based in 5W and will be led by Miss Wetherill and Mrs Kroon.
Year 6 will be divided into 4 groups of up to 15 (expecting 8-10 in each ‘bubble’ in the first instance). Each group will have a teacher and, typically, a Teaching Assistant. Miss Jones and Mrs Sykes will be in their usual rooms, whilst Mr Hemming will take up to half of 6J in the Studio space and Miss Levett will be re-united with up to half of her old class in 5L.
We expect to be able to continue to provide remote learning that is similar to current provision in Years 2-5. Parents must be clear that remote learning for those children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 who don’t attend school is likely to be reduced as the teachers will be in class full time. We would hope to be able to set some work on blogs and Google Classroom (Y6) but it is unlikely that we will be able to provide prompt on-going feedback.