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September 2020

This is an extract from the letter sent to parents on 15th July 2020 (see below)

In order to minimise the numbers of families on the school site at any one time we have had to stagger the start and end of the school day as recommended by the Government. Unfortunately, we are unable to change this for any individual circumstances. Please DO NOT arrive before your time slot but between your allotted time – this will stagger numbers safely:

Year Group Arrival  Time  Leave Time Entry and Exit Further Information
Nursery 8.30am 3.30pm Nursery Door Taught in the Nursery room each day by Miss Goodwin and Miss Durose
Reception

NOT BEFORE

9.00am - 9.10am

3.00pm EYFS Top Gate Mrs Jones will be on your gate at the start and end of each day, Please do not arrive early, you will not be able to get on site until 9am.
Year 1

NOT BEFORE

8.30am - 8.40am

3.10pm EYFS Lower gate Mrs Jones will be on your gate at the start and end of each day, please do not arrive before 8.30am
Year 2

NOT BEFORE

8.45am - 8.55am

3.25pm EYFS Lower gate

Mrs Jones will be on your gate at the start and end of each day, please do not arrive before 8.45am

Year 3

NOT BEFORE

8.30am - 8.40am

3.10pm KS1 gate Mr Cope will be on your gate at the start and end of each day, please do not arrive before 8.30am
Year 4

NOT BEFORE

8.45am - 8.55am

3.25pm KS1 gate Mr Cope will be on your gate at the start and end of each day, please do not arrive before 8.45am

September Full Opening Update

 15th July 2020

September Full Opening Update

Dear Parents/Carers,

I am very pleased to say that the Government expects all children in all year groups to be back to school full time in September. We very much look forward to welcoming all year groups back to Picknalls First School. The Trust will continue to listen to advice from the Local Authority and Government, and monitor indicators, both nationally and locally, to inform any change of provision in the future.  In this way we will work to ensure, as far as possible, that we can deliver the safest possible outcomes in these very difficult times for our children, staff, parents, carers and community.

We have been working through the revised Government guidance and I wanted to share our plans with you ready for our full opening. Governors have approved all our plans for September opening. Unfortunately, things are unable to return to ‘normal’ and we still have to be putting additional measures in place to keep the Picknalls community safe.

Please familiarise yourself with the details of what to expect when you return to the school site and talk to your children to reassure them with some of the changes. All changes that have been made to the school procedures and classrooms have been made with everyone’s safety at heart and following Government, Local Authority and ULT advice. I can never guarantee to keep Covid-19 out of Picknalls First School but I am confident that we have made our site as safe as we can.

Senior leaders have taken account of all Government guidance when preparing for the full opening of school. Many of these aspects will be familiar to those that have attended school as a critical worker or as part of the wider opening, but some aspects from our risk assessment that I wanted to share with you include:

Discussions with children – Staff will be talking to the children and both reminding them of our new ways of working and expectations and reassuring them about things. We are very mindful that this situation is scary enough as a teacher, never mind as a child! Although the Government have been clear that social distancing in schools is NOT expected, this instead means putting all these strategies outlined in the letter in place to avoid children sharing their space with too many others. Children will be asked to, and reminded to, wash hands as soon as they arrive in their classroom, before and after break time and lunch time and before they go home as a minimum. We have suitable hand wash, hand sanitiser and hand cream available in all rooms.

Staggered start of the term – In order to allow for key year groups/year groups that have not attended school at all to come back to school first we are staggering the first week as below:

Monday 31st August 

Bank holiday, school closed

Tuesday 1st September  

INSET day, school closed to children

Wednesday 2nd September 

ONLY Year One, Year Three and Year Four (current teachers will join the new teachers initially to help settle the children into their new rooms and make them feel at ease)

Thursday 3rd September and Friday 4th September 

ALL year groups

Staggered start and end of the day times – In order to minimise the numbers of families on the school site at any one time we have had to stagger the start and end of the school day as recommended by the Government. Unfortunately, we are unable to change this for any individual circumstances. Please DO NOT arrive before your time slot but between your allotted time – this will stagger numbers safely:

  • Nursery Nursery door open at 8.30am – 3.30pm (Entry and Exit at Nursery door) Taught in the Nursery room each day by Miss Goodwin and Miss Durose
  • Reception Arrive between 9am and 9.10am – 3pm (Entry and Exit at Early Years Top Gate) Mrs Jones will be on your gate at the start and end of each day, please do not arrive early, you will not be able to get on site until 9am.
  • Year 1      Arrive between 8.30am and 8:40am with a 3.10pm finish - (Entry and exit at EYFS lower gate, gate will be open from 8:30am) Mrs Jones will be on your gate at the start and end
  • Year 2 Arrive between 8.45am and 8:55am – 3:25pm (Entry and exit at EYFS lower gate, gate will be open from 8:45am) Mrs Jones will be on your gate at the start and end of each day, please do not arrive before 8.45am
  • Year 3 Arrive between 8.30am and 8:40am with a 3.10pm finish - (Entry and Exit at KS1  lower gate, gate will be open from 8:30am) Mr Cope will be on your gate at the start and end of each day, please do not arrive before 8.30am
  • Year 4 Arrive between 8.45am and 8:55am – 3:25pm (Entry and exit at KS1 lower gate, gate will be open from 8:45am) Mr Cope will be on your gate at the start and end of each day, please do not arrive before 8.45am

A member of staff will not only be on the gate but at key points around school to help the children settle into their new rooms. They will be shown where to go once on site. If your child is very reluctant at coming back we are obviously not allowed to come and get them off you as we would normally. If this is the case, please go for a 5 minute walk with them and try again. If the gates are closed on your return bring your child up to the main reception. Please do not worry, your child will get used to being back after a few days.

Drop off and pick up - When you arrive and leave the school site please remember to keep 2 metres away from any other family at all times. When you drop off please do not enter the school site but allow your child to come through the gates independently. Please do not crowd around the gate as this is then unsafe for the next children coming in. Please do not stay and have a chat to other families on site as the next group of children will be arriving straight after you.

When you collect we will open the gates on the EYFS and KS1 playground and we ask you to space out safely on the playground whilst waiting for your child to be dismissed.

Please can only one parent come onto the site and any toddlers be in a pushchair or carried in order to avoid congestion and to speed up drop off and pick up.

Parking – The school car park gates will be closed from 8.25am and not reopened until 3.45pm when the site is clear. Parents must not use the school car park between these times unless in emergencies. The leisure centre have given permission for the use of their car park with no time restrictions or penalties for parents. They have agreed to support the staggered use of the car park during this period. Please respect their procedures as we are very lucky to have this facility. Please use the leisure centre car park and not the lane leading into school as it is not safe to turn around at busy times. Mrs Tapp will continue to monitor the leisure centre and road to ensure everyone is safe.

One way systems - To help ease the crossover of entry and exit into school please walk into school on the leisure centre side and exit on the house side, this will support social distancing. We will be placing one way systems around school to stop the crossover of children also on site. External doors will be used as much as possible.

Signage - Additional posters will be up the drive and around school to remind everyone about the important measures such as social distancing, ‘catch it, bin it, kill it,’ washing hands etc. Children will be talked to, reminded and encouraged to follow the new rules in school to keep everyone safe. They will not be told off or punished, but encouraged to understand why things are different and how we can help everyone to stay safe.

Staffing – As children are returning to classes they will be with their new class teacher/s and will come into contact with teaching assistants, lunchtime supervisors etc. The Government have asked for us to put children into class ‘bubbles.’ The children in each class will not mix on site with any other bubble during the school day. They may however, come into contact with a range of staff including their new teacher/s, teaching assistants supporting both bubbles in the year group and lunchtime supervisors.  As we are not able to mix bubbles, we will not be ‘setting’ in any year group for English and Maths. The children will be taught in their class with their class teacher for every subject.

Classrooms – As per the guidance, children will be seated in rows all facing the front of the classroom.  Non-essential furniture or resources will be removed from classrooms. Any additional resources used will be used by individuals only or cleaned down at the end of each day. Cloakrooms will not be used by more than one class, or in our larger cloakrooms physical barriers will be up to stop the children mixing. Some classrooms will have portable hanging rails for use in the room. Classroom windows and internal doors will be open at all times to stop the children having to touch them to open them and allow for adequate ventilation. The only ‘locked’ door will be the main one into the school in the main office for security purposes. Children will use paper towels/disposable tissues for drying hands and sneezes and we will reinforce the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ idea. All classrooms have had new-lidded bins placed next to the sinks in the rooms. Only one child per class will go to the toilet at any time and we have a one-way system for the KS1 and KS2 toilets. Each year group will have their own cubicle to use. Children will come back to their classroom to wash their hands.

Curriculum – The staff will be delivering English, Maths and Connected Curriculum activities, with the emphasis on the core skills and closing the gap due to lost time in school.  We will offer our full, broad and balanced curriculum wherever possible. Our initial focus will be on settling them back in, getting them back into a routine and developing positive mental health.

Break times – Break times and lunchtimes will be staggered to avoid the crossover of the classes during the school day. All 3 playgrounds and fields will be utilised to support the separation of the groups. Children will have designated areas to play in and do outdoor learning aspects in as much as the weather allows.

Lunchtimes – Children will be eating their lunches in the classrooms to avoid large gatherings in the hall. For those who have school dinners there will be a choice of: 2 sandwich options, 2 jacket potato options and a hot meal.  These will be prepared in the school kitchen and delivered to your child’s classroom for them to enjoy. The new system is that all parents are to pre-order their child’s meal at least one week in advance, so that the kitchen can order the relevant ingredients required. Parents can pre-order all the half term meals in one go if preferred. The selection process is on Parent pay. You will need to select your child’s meal option then pay for the meals added to your basket. Even children in Reception, Year One and Year Two who are eligible for universal free school meals need to select their food options, pre-order, add to basket and check out. If you have any queries with this new system please do not hesitate to contact the school office.

Uniform – Children are to come to school in their school uniform. Uniforms do not need to be cleaned any more often than usual, nor do they need to be cleaned using methods which are different from normal.

Cleaning – Each classroom will contain a ‘Covid 19 cleaning box’ (kept out of the way of children) which will be stocked each day and will contain – suitable hand wash, hand sanitizer, paper towels, paper face masks, disposable gloves, a disposable apron, detergent spray and  disposable cleaning cloths. Cleaning is now taking place at lunchtimes as well as after school each day.

PPE – Staff have access to appropriate PPE. In accordance with Government guidelines staff will wear full PPE if - a child shows symptoms of Coronavirus, or have to carry out intimate personal care or first aid. Children should not wear PPE to school. Please contact us if you would like to discuss any personal issues.

Bringing things from home – In order to reduce any possible cross contamination we ask that your child ONLY BRING a named water bottle and a packed lunch (if they are not having a school packed lunch.) Please ensure you wash the lunchbox each night. If it is a particularly hot day please either apply 24 hour sun lotion before school or provide your child with appropriate and named sun tan lotion. This must be given to the teacher on arrival and will be stored out of the reach of children. The teacher will only be allowed to put some in the child’s hand and the child must then apply it for themselves. Please also send a hat on very hot days as we will be doing outdoor activities as recommended by the Government where possible. Please do not send your child with toys or unnecessary items from home. As we are limited on space across school and not having full access to cloakrooms, please DO NOT BRING A BAG to school.

Home learning – We are currently updating our new style parent information sheet. This will go home at the start of each half term and will be on the website. It will contain some information about your child’s new topic and will have some home learning suggestions for you. We have received very positive comments about our home learning suggested ideas and we would like to continue this for the future. We hope this will guide you further in supporting us to close any gaps and allow for greater home school links. These half termly home learning suggestions will then form the ‘Home Learning’ should classes be affected by Covid-19 or a local lockdown is enforced.

School office – Please do not call into the main school office unless urgent. Please call or email us instead. Only one person is to come into the reception area at any time if essential.

Happy Hours – I am pleased to be able to confirm that Happy Hours are running a Summer holiday club in the Treetops building. We are hoping to be able to offer a before and after school club from September, but Happy Hours are awaiting final guidance on this. If you would like to express your interest for a place in the Summer club or for September please contact Happy Hours on 07518 383775 or Picknalls@happyhourschildcare.co.uk

Procedure to follow if your child is ill and who to inform - If your child is ill, please notify us of the details on 01889 228700. If your child shows any symptoms of COVID-19 i.e. a new and persistent cough and/or high temperature, and or loss of taste or smell, your child must be kept at home to self-isolate for seven days from when their symptoms started, and for longer if the symptoms persist.  If a member of your family, living in the same household as the child(ren), is showing symptoms and following guidance has been forced to self-isolate, you will need to keep your child at home for 14 days. Please let us know if a member of your family does test positive for COVID-19.  All staff and students who are attending an education or childcare setting will have access to a test if they display symptoms of coronavirus, and are encouraged to get tested in this scenario. Where the child tests negative, they can return to their setting and the fellow household members can end their self-isolation.  Where the child tests positive please notify us immediately so that we can take further measures as necessary.  If you need to book a test you can do so at the following website: https://www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test.

The Government is expecting that all pupils, in all year groups, will return to school full-time from the beginning of the Autumn term. If there is a specific reason as to why your child is unable to return to school in September please give us a call and we can talk through your specific circumstances. If we do not hear from you, we look forward to seeing you on your year groups start date and at your allotted time.

School will be, and has to be, a very different place, but please be reassured that we will be talking to and taking the children on the journey with us all the way. Everything we do will be age appropriate and in the best interests of the Picknalls community.

If you have any questions on any of the points raised above please do not hesitate to get in touch on headteacher@picknalls.staffs.sch.uk or office@picknalls.staffs.sch.uk or call us on 01889 228700 between the hours of 8.00am and 4.30pm.

We again thank you for your understanding and patience.

Please continue to stay safe and well and we hope to see you soon.

Yours faithfully,

Anne Tapp

Headteacher

Links

September Full Opening Letter

Staffordshire County Council Guidance:

Getting to School in September

Gov.uk Guidance:

What parents and carers need to know about nurseries, childminders, schools and colleges until August 2020

What parents and carers need to know about early years providers, schools and colleges in the autumn term

Further Information Included on this page:

  • Discussions with Children
  • Staggered start of the term
  • Staggered start and end of the day times
  • Drop off and pick up
  • Parking
  • Signage
  • Staffing
  • Classrooms
  • Curriculum
  • Break times
  • Lunchtimes
  • Uniform
  • Cleaning
  • PPE
  • Bringing things from home
  • Home learning
  • School office
  • Happy Hours
  • Procedure to follow if your child is ill and who to inform
  • Transition - September 2020

Transition - September 2020

Every year at the start of July we hold our transition day, where your child would have spent the morning with their new class teacher in preparation for September. Due to Covid-19 and the restrictions within school, this is unable to happen in the same way. I would still like to inform you of your child’s class teacher for September so that you can start to prepare them for this change. 

I am therefore very happy to tell you that the new classes for September 2020 are as follows:

CURRENT CLASS

CLASS IN SEPTEMBER

CLASS TEACHER

FS1

Class 1

Miss Adams

FS2

Class 2

Mrs Cornes

Class 1

Class 4

Mrs De Soyza

Class 2

Class 3

Mrs Jordi/Mrs Hunt

Class 3

Class 6

Mrs Kasperowicz

Class 4

Class 5

Mrs Fenton/Mrs Jordi

Class 5

Class 8

Mr Cope

Class 6

Class 7

Miss Tinto

Click on the names for a  little introduction from your child’s new class teacher as a welcome and this will enable you to put a name to a face.

Mrs N Jones will be on maternity leave from September so Mrs S Fenton (4 days a week) will be joined by Mrs P Jordi (1 day a week) in class 5 for this year.

It has been lovely to welcome back on average 100 children a day to the school. The children have shown how resilient they are and have taken on board the new ways of working in school so easily. I would also like to thank the parents who have been on site each day for abiding by the new procedures and making us feel so confident in welcoming you back.

The Government have announced that all children will be returning to school in September and we cannot wait to be able to welcome all children back on site. We are still awaiting the details from the Government as to how this will be possible, and once planned for I will of course update you all as to the new procedures ready for September.

I have also attached a letter for all parents from Philip White (Cabinet Member for Learning and Employment) and Helen Riley (Deputy chief executive with Staffordshire local authority.)

Finally, end of year reports will be emailed to all parents during the last week of term.

If you have any queries regarding your child’s transition or anything else, please contact Mrs Tapp or Mr Cope via email on headteacher@picknalls.staffs.sch.uk or gcope@picknalls.co.uk or call the school on 01889 228700.

Yours sincerely,