Coronavirus briefing update no: 23 Thursday June 11th 2020
Here we are with this week’s news on what we are doing and thinking at school. We are really pleased with the way the first two weeks have gone since half term and we feel it has been really beneficial for the boys to be back, even if they were only able to manage being here for part of the week.
Given where we are with national advice and guidance, we are going to run with the same pattern of a Week 1 group and a Week 2 group for the next two weeks, ie weeks beginning Monday 15th June and Monday 22nd June.
If your son has not attended in either of the past two weeks and you would like him to start back at school please can you contact Chris Heslip on email@example.com and he will ensure that we place additional students into one of the two groups.
At this point we would like to reiterate that there is absolutely no compulsion for your son to return if you do not feel it is in his or your family’s best interests. The groups for weeks 1 and 2 have been carefully thought through using a number of criteria including balance of residential and day students, numbers in class groups and social considerations. We are aware that some boys might be slightly disappointed if their friends are not in the same group, but we have done our best and at this point cannot make any alterations to the groups.
Start and finish times for both Week 1 and Week 2:
In school: start In school: finish At home: start At home: finish
Monday 10.30 4.10 11.30 3.30
Tuesday 9.00 4.10 9.30 3.30
Wednesday 9.00 4.10 9.30 3.30
Thursday 9.00 4.10 9.30 3.30
Friday 9.00 3.30 9.30 3.30
We ask all parents to keep up to date with information about Covid-19 symptoms and not to return their son to school if they are any member of your household is demonstrating any of them.
Much of the information below is a repeat of what we have included in previous briefing updates, but we thought would be helpful to include as a reminder.
For students coming back to school here are 10 ways to keep yourself safe:
1. Wash your hands when:
– you arrive at school
– in between lessons
– in between activities
– before and after eating
– before you go home
– before and after using play equipment
– when you go back to your room on residential
– before and after evening activities
2. If you need to cough and sneeze for any reason, use a tissue and catch it, bin it, kill it.
3. Keep 2 metres apart.
4. Follow the one-way system using the stickers on the floor.
5. In school, you will have a designated desk, just for you. No one else should use this space and you should not use anyone else’s.
6. Whilst in residential, you should be outside or in your own house only.
7. Your equipment is just for you e.g. laptop, water bottle, pens, please do not share them or take them home.
8. Staff may remind you several times about these rules, please listen as they are there to keep you and others safe.
9. If you start to feel unwell whilst at school, let the adult you are with know as soon as possible.
10. If you are unsure about something, feel worried or have any questions please talk to the adult that you are with.
Boys in school will follow the same online lessons as those who are at home. They will be in a dedicated classroom with the same staff each day forming their own ‘social bubble’. They will also eat in these groups and have their lunch either in the classroom or outside. For those boys who will be doing their lessons from home, there may be some changes in the availability of additional support due to the staff being available to supervise those boys who are here on site.
If boys have been using any school textbooks/resources at home over the past few weeks, it would be extremely helpful if they could bring them in with them to ensure we have enough here for them to work from.
We hope you will feel reassured that we are taking the current situation and government guidance very seriously and as a result of this we will be developing a flexible therapy provision model for the remainder of the summer term. As things stand, therapy will still not be able to be delivered in the usual way following your son’s EHCP.
However, therapy will continue to be available to boys in the following ways: some sessions will continue to be offered remotely, and some may be delivered face to face if deemed safe, e.g. outside. Some may be less frequent, and some may be paused, but please note that all clinical decisions will be made on an individual basis. We will continue to review the way in which therapy is delivered whilst ensuring the safety of the students, clinicians and wider school team. We hope that you understand our decisions at this time and please do feel free to contact any membered of the therapy team with any questions.
Medication: Please can you make sure that if your son is returning to school that he has enough medication for the week.
Personal equipment: All boys will be provided with their own water bottle, which we will help them to clean on a daily basis.
Each boy will have his own laptop which we will help him to clean every day.
Each boy will be given a set of headphones which are compatible with the school’s computers. We are happy for boys to bring their own headphones, but they will need to be compatible with the laptop computers.
School site: In order to meet the requirements of our risk assessment we have had to make a number of changes to the site which we thought would be helpful to share with the boys before they return. Rather than trying to describe these changes we have made a short video outlining the one-way system in school, which you can see by clicking here Link
Track and trace:
We are aware that there is a new national system for tracking and tracing people who have the virus, and we will keep up to date with how this will affect us here. We will provide you with more information once we receive the national guidance on this.
As you are aware, we are not responsible for transport from home to school. However, we are in the process of contacting all Local Authorities to let them know who is returning to school in Week 1 and in Week 2. You may also wish to contact your taxi company to make sure you are happy about the arrangements they are putting in place. We are also aware that some families would like to bring their son back to school themselves, rather than using the taxi. If this is what you would prefer to do please can you let Rachel know firstname.lastname@example.org and also inform your Local Authority.
The school has used all the relevant external guidance as well as our knowledge of the site and our students to collate the following risk assessment. This will be reviewed and updated over the coming days and weeks, in the light of new information being made available to us and/or as we identify unforeseen risks when the boys return. The full risk assessment is being sent out along with this briefing update.
Review and next steps:
As we are all aware, this is a very fluid situation and national guidance and/or our own risk assessment may require us to change course at any point. We are particularly interested in how Government discussions progress in respect of the 2 m social distancing policy as this will have an impact on how we use the space we have available and the size of groups we can operate in.
Please be reassured that we will continue to keep you up to date with what we are thinking and our proposed plans for school life after the next two weeks, i.e. from June 29th onwards.
We hope that all of the above information is helpful to you and reassures you that we are taking all the necessary precautions to ensure the school is a safe and healthy environment to return to.
Wishing you all an enjoyable and hopefully sunny weekend after the cold spell we have just had, and we will be in touch again next week.
Very best wishes to you all,
Kiran, Rob and Rob