Update on the re-opening of New Scotland Hill Primary School
A Parent's Guide to Promoting Early Learning and Development at Home (0-5 years)
Coping Young Person's Guide - How to look after your mental health & emotional wellbeing during the coronavirus outbreak
Coping with Family Life during the Lockdown
Self-Isolation versus Social Distancing
Youthline - Useful Contact Information
Details of eligibility for provision in school for children from Monday 23rd March.
Firstly, can I say that I hope that your children and all in your family are coping with what is an ever-changing, challenging situation that we are dealing with regarding the Coronavirus outbreak. These are unprecedented times and in amongst the constant news and press coverage, updates and information, I am aware that we have a school full of children who it is vital we support by maintaining a sense of calm and reassurance.
With this in mind, please rest assured that I have at all times aimed to not overload our school community with letters and updates, however, we are living school weeks where guidance and rulings are changing on a daily basis, sometimes twice a day (as was the case yesterday). In all of this, we are guided by our Local Authority, who take their lead from the daily Government updates. I am aware that we can easily become weary of yet more news on this subject, but I do feel that every update, and the implications of these for us all, are vital so that you are fully in the picture.
As ever, on behalf of everyone at New Scotland Hill, I thank you for your ongoing support, patience and understanding in these difficult times. As a community we will ensure that the school comes through these challenging days. Please know that we are here for you and should you have any queries or concerns please do not hesitate to get in touch.
I am sure you will have seen the Government announcements of yesterday evening and with these in mind, please be aware that we are bound by the Government statement that:
- Schools will remain open until any change in Government policy
- If ANY member of a household displays either of the key symptoms, then ALL members of the household must self-isolate for 14 DAYS
- The key symptoms remain a temperature or a new, persistent cough
It is vital that everyone follows these rules; rest assured that for any child absent from school through self-isolating, absences will be recorded as authorised under exceptional circumstances.
Please be aware that there are no longer limitations placed on children returning from travel to foreign countries, as was previously the case.
Prevention & Dealing With a Potential Case of Coronavirus
The following measures are all in place to prevent Coronavirus being passed on within school:
- Children will continue to be encouraged to wash their hands regularly
- Tissues are readily available, with bins accessible to dispose of these
- Children may bring their own hand gel into school (please name the container)
- Wherever possible, all windows in classrooms will be open to provide circulation
- Posters are displayed around school to promote good hygiene
- Assemblies will be held in Key Stages to limit the volume of children in the hall at any time and to provide more space for them in which to sit
- Visitors to school are limited to essential staff
- Extra-curricular clubs will be suspended until the end of term, when this will reviewed
- External visits and sports events are currently suspended
- We will continue to provide hand gel on entry for visitors attending
- Regular cleaning takes place, with additional cleaning of ‘high-traffic’ areas or regularly used equipment; door handles are wiped down regularly
The school has been asked by the local authority to provide an isolation room for any children displaying the symptoms associated with COVID-19. We have designated an area in the studio, which is well-ventilated and spacious, therefore ideal for this purpose. The room will be cleaned on a regular basis and will not be used for other purposes in the meantime. Please be reassured that if your child is sent to the room, as a priority, they will be cared for by a member of staff until they are collected. Should you receive a call to alert you that your child has been isolated, we ask that you collect them as quickly as possible and then follow the self-isolation guidelines issued by the government.
If the school is forced to close, either due to revised Government guidelines or because of significant staff absence, the usual procedures for a school closure will be implemented and communicated as outlined below. We will endeavour to notify you all as soon as we are able to in an attempt to reduce the disruption that it will cause. We announce closure using a variety of methods:
- A message will be posted on the school website
- A Parentmail will be sent
- School social media sites will report any closures
Should we experience significant staff absence and are unable to cover this, we have a plan in place to partially open if this is realistically possible. Which year groups open will depend on which staff are available, but as a priority, we will ensure that Years 2 and 6 will open given that they are in key assessment years. We will communicate this with you at the earliest opportunity.
Additional Home Learning
In order to support you as families if children have to self-isolate, or in the eventuality that we have to close the school, staff have worked incredibly hard to create additional work that can be done at home when absent from school. This can be found at the following link:
Within each Year Group section, there are a series of weekly activities, with appropriate guidance, for the children to complete. There are instructions for the activities; you will also find resources to support you as parents in helping the children with the activities. We have provided:
- 5 pieces of Literacy work for the week
- 5 pieces of maths work for the week
- 5 ‘Topic/Other Curriculum Area’ pieces – these can be more sustained pieces – for the week
These pieces cannot be marked by the teacher, but wherever possible, answer booklets are provided digitally, along with the work. We will provide an exercise book for the children to work in in order to help you avoid having to photocopy significant amounts of worksheets.
In the event of ongoing disruption or long-term closures, we will provide this work on a weekly basis, with teachers uploading a new set of resources every Friday for the following week. The first set of resources will be available from this Thursday, 19th March and will be updated on the 27th March with the next set.
Please avoid the temptation to access resources now, as if you use them and then have the need to self-isolate or school closes, new resources will not be updated until the following Friday.
In addition to the class pages, there is a ‘Headteacher’s Challenge’ section. Within this you can find a range of activities to adapt and work on. You can explore these fully, potentially spending several hours over time completing many of these if absent from school. I have included links to external websites for ideas and inspiration. Please be aware that some of these may include activities to do outside – please ensure these are only completed in line with Government guidance related to self-isolation.
If we close as a school, Twinkl (an online provider of school resources) have indicated that they will provide a free log-in for all parents to access additional resources on their website:
Should this be the case, you will be Parentmailed the free log-in details at the earliest opportunity.
This situation is not ideal and it goes without saying that there is no replacement for being in school with a teacher. However, under the circumstances we have put together the best possible selection of resources to support you with home learning. Arrangements may change as we develop this system and we will keep you updated of this in due course.
On a regular basis, we will also post ideas and links on Twitter to keep you busy during any absence from school.
For advice over concerns or queries regarding the Coronavirus, you can contact the DfE helpline:
Phone: 0800 046 8687
Email:DfE.firstname.lastname@example.org Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday)
In order to support you and/or your child with any concerns you may have regarding Coronavirus, the following links to resources may be useful to you: