To all Parents/Carers,
Firstly, I would like to thank you for your patience and support through these difficult times. As all of you will be aware by now, schools across England will close tonight Friday 20th March for the foreseeable future.
School will remain open for a certain number of pupils as outlined by the Government and are being asked to continue to provide care for a limited number of children – children who are vulnerable and children whose parents are critical to the Covid-19 response and cannot be safely cared for at home. Vulnerable children include children who are supported by social care, those with safeguarding and welfare needs, including child in need plans, on child protection plans, ‘looked after’ children, young carers, disabled children and those with Education, Health and Care |Plans (EHCP). School will contact these families before the close of day today.
The Government has asked parents to keep their children at home, wherever possible, and asked schools to remain open only for those children who absolutely need to attend. The fewer children making the journey to school and the fewer children in educational settings, the lower the risk that the virus can spread and infect vulnerable individuals in wider society.
The key message is if you can keep your child at home from Monday then please do so. If you cannot and you know you are needed in the front-line to help others and fight this disease, then please read the criteria attached and use the school text service to contact us.
We know this will put pressure and strain on lots of other families. We know that school closure will have effects on pupils learning and staff have prepared packs of work for your child to take home, or they can be collected from the office. In the packs are a number of on-line learning sites that the children can access. These should also be outlined on the class pages on our website.
Parents should also do everything they can to ensure children are not mixing socially in a way which can continue to spread the virus. They should observe the same social distancing principles as adults.
If your child is entitled to free school meals, you should receive vouchers in the future, however until then; we will try to provide sandwich bags for your children that can be collected at the school gate. We will send a text asking if you require a free school meal for this week or not.
Please reply as soon as possible so we can have an idea of numbers.
All assessments have been cancelled for this year, the hard work of our children will not be lost and though everyone is unsure of how long school’s will be closed for educational purposes, we will keep in touch with updates via our text messaging service, our Twitter account @OurLadyStarSea and on our website.
For the time being, what I would like to say is that this is a testing time for all of us. As a school, our role does not end at the gates. Please be assured that if you need support, we will do our utmost to try to support all our families as best as we practically can.
Again, please continue to ensure our children are not mixing socially in a way that can spread the virus, keep social distancing as adults and look after each other.
Please keep safe.
Mrs J Jenkins
Parents whose work is critical to the COVID-19 response include those who work in health and social care and in other key sectors outlined below.
Many parents working in these sectors may be able to ensure their child is kept at home and every child who can be safely cared for at home should be.
If your work is critical to the COVID-19 response, or you work in one of the critical sectors listed below, and you cannot keep your child safe at home then your children will be prioritised for education provision:
Health & Social Care
This includes but is not limited to doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, social workers, care workers, and other frontline health and social care staff including volunteers; the support and specialist staff required to maintain the UK’s health and social care sector; those working as part of the health and social care supply chain, including producers and distributors of medicines and medical and personal protective equipment.
Education and Childcare
This includes nursery and teaching staff, social workers and those specialist education professionals who must remain active during the COVID-19 response to deliver this approach.
Key Public Services
This includes those essential to the running of the justice system, religious staff, charities and workers delivering key frontline services, those responsible for the management of the deceased, and journalists and broadcasters who are providing public service broadcasting.
Local and National Government
This only includes those administrative occupations essential to the effective delivery of the COVI|D-19 response or delivering essential public services such as the payment of benefits, including in government agencies and arms length bodies.
Food and Other Necessary Goods
This includes those involved in food production, processing, distribution, sale and delivery as well as those essential to the provision of other key goods (for example hygienic and veterinary medicines).
Public Safety and National Security
This includes police and support staff, Ministry of Defence civilians, contractor and armed forces personnel (those critical to the delivery of key defence and national security outputs and essential to the response to the COVID-19 pandemic), fire and rescue services employees (including support staff), National Crime Agency staff, those maintaining border security roles, including those overseas.
This includes those who will keep the air, water, road and rail passenger and freight transport modes operating during the COVID-19 response, including those working on transport systems through which supply chains pass.
Utilities, Communication and Financial Services
This includes staff needed for essential financial services provision (including but not limited to workers in banks, building societies and financial market infrastructure), the oil, gas, electricity and water sectors (including sewerage), information technology and data infrastructure sector and primary industry supplies to continue during the COVID-19 response, as well as key staff working in the civil nuclear, chemicals, telecommunications (including but not limited to network operations, field engineering, call centre staff, IT and data infrastructure, 999 and 111 critical services), postal services and delivery, payments providers and waste disposal sectors.
Please remember only to use the school if your child has to attend if they can stay at home then please do so.