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Coronavirus Updates

Newsletter    Friday 22nd May

22nd May 2020

Dear Parents and Carers

As you are aware, we have been reviewing the guidance that the government has been providing over the past week with regards to planning for reopening our school to certain year groups after half term.

Our planning has been underpinned by two key principles:

● The safety of our children and our staff are paramount; this includes their mental, emotional and physical wellbeing. All our decisions are led by the welfare of children and staff, guided by the latest advice from government, PHE and other scientific evidence

● We must continue to provide children and students with the best quality learning that we are able to, given the circumstances.

I am setting out in this letter our current plans for after half term. It is important to note that the reopening of schools is subject to the government’s ‘five key conditions’ being met and will be reviewed by the Government on Thursday 28 May. Updated guidance from the Government, PHE and other scientific advisers is being published daily and may cause us to review plans between now and 1 June. Any new cases of Covid-19 amongst our children and staff may also impact our ability to reopen the school. Therefore, it is important to understand that the plans set out in this letter may be subject to change.

There are also some key aspects of school reopening which I want to bring to your attention so that you can make an informed decision about your child returning to school:

● Whilst we will take all measures possible to ensure social distancing, it must be acknowledged that we will not be able to guarantee this.

● The physical limitations of our classrooms mean that we will not be able to operate groups of 15 children in all cases, and children will be in smaller groups. Children must always remain in these small groups.

● Your child may not be with their usual teacher

● Classroom layout will be different to support social distancing, with set desks; this will be particularly different for younger children who are used to free flow play

● Curriculum will be different as paired and group work will not be possible

● Children may see staff wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) where this is required to deal with medical or sickness situations

● The use of education resources will be restricted and will need to be cleaned more regularly

● Social interaction in all year groups will be extremely limited.

To allow for the preparation of classrooms and resources, and for staff training we will be closing the school on Monday 1 and Tuesday 2 June. We will continue to provide childcare for children of key workers.

Having carefully considered all the aspects above, we will be reopening the school for the following year groups from 3rd June:

Wednesday 3rd June and Thursday 4th June

Year 6 pupils admitted to school. Mornings only. 8.30am start and 12.00pm finish. Split between two teachers- Mrs Robertson and Mrs Thomas. Mrs Tanner will support the safe hygiene regime. Pupils do not attend on Friday.

Week beginning Monday 8th June

Year 6 pupils admitted to school for 4 days. 8.30am – 2.30pm working with their allocated teacher. Pupils will not attend on Friday.

FSU pupils admitted to school for 4 mornings. Split between two teachers - Mrs Raby and Mrs Tyler. Two teaching assistants will support the safe hygiene regime. 9.00am start and 12.00pm finish. One group in FSU space one group in Nursery space. Pupils will not attend on Friday.

Week beginning Monday 15th June

Year 6 pupils admitted to school for 4 days. 8.30am – 2.30pm working with their allocated teacher. Pupils will not attend on Friday.

FSU pupils admitted to school for 4 days working with their allocated teacher. 9.00am start and 3.00pm finish. Pupil will not attend on Friday.

Week beginning Monday 22nd June

Year 6 pupils admitted to school for 4 days. 8.30am – 2.30pm working with their allocated teacher. Pupils will not attend on Friday.

FSU pupils admitted to school for 4 days working with their allocated teacher. 9.00am start and 3.00pm finish. Pupil will not attend on Friday.

Year 1 pupils admitted to school mornings only. 8.45 start and 12.00 finish. Spilt between 2 teachers - Miss McBeath and Miss Eades. Mrs Beattie and Mrs Clements will support the safe hygiene regime. Pupils will not attend Friday.

Week beginning Monday 29th June

Year 6 pupils admitted to school for 4 days. 8.30am – 2.30pm working with their allocated teacher. Pupils will not attend on Friday.

FSU pupils admitted to school for 4 days working with their allocated teacher. 9.00am start and 3.00pm finish. Pupil will not attend on Friday.

Year 1 pupils admitted to school for 4 days working with their allocated teacher. 8.45am start and 2.45pm finish. Pupils will not attend Friday.

During this time, we will plan how, when, and if, we can accommodate nursery pupils.

You will notice that the school is closed to pupils on a Friday. This is to allow for a full hygienic clean of all resources and the building as per the government’s guidance.

Throughout all to this we will continue to provide childcare from 8.30am – 3.15pm Monday to Friday. Places are limited to 15 and priority will be given to NHS workers, care workers and the pupils of staff at the school. You should also note that you can not opt for your child to attend school for 4 days a week with their peer group, and then attend the childcare on the Friday. It is important that the children remain within their bubble to minimise the risk of cross infection. The guidance is that parents will need to choose one level of provision and stick with it throughout term 6, and we appreciate the implications for you and your child when making this decision. If you require a place in our child care provision, and you are a key worker please email j.hawkin@hardwickschool.org.

If your child has medical condition which deems them to be critically vulnerable, or if another member of your household if critically vulnerable then your child should remain at home and not return to school.

The start and end of the school day has been staggered to support social distancing. We ask that only 1 adult per household comes on site to collect, and you will not be allowed to congregate at the school gates, or in the car park whilst waiting for pickup.

All pupils are expected to wear full school uniform. Children must attend in clean uniform. The recommendation is that it is freshly laundered every day. Pupils will not be admitted to school if their uniform is dirty from the previous day. Trainers can be worn as the children will spend most of their time outside. PE kit and book bags will not be required. No toys or other items should be brought into school.

There will be no cooked meals available. All children will need to be bring a lunch box that is emptied and washed every day. Lunch will be eaten in classrooms. Those entitled to a free school meal, including those in FSU and Year 1 on the Universal Free School meal offer, will have a sandwich bag provided. We will continue to provide FSM vouchers for those eligible children not in school. If your child is in a year group which is returning to school, but remains at home, then we will only be able to provide vouchers retrospectively once we know that you child has not attended for that week.

Children need to bring their own drinks bottle filled with water and clearly marked with their name.

Children will be instructed to wash their hands, every time they enter the building, before and after eating, and having been to the toilet. This will be rigorously enforced by all staff.

There will be no Breakfast Club or After school clubs running.

If your child develops any symptoms of Covid 19 they will be immediately isolated, and you will be contacted. Please ensure that we have the most up to date contact details in the office, by emailing them to s.horne@hardwickschool.org

Further general information and guidance for parents and carers regarding coronavirus is available here: http://www.glfschools.org/1168/coronavirus-covid-19.

I apologise for the sombre nature of this letter, but it is important that parents are clear about the implication of sending your child back to school. School will not present the children with the same social opportunities that they are used to, and indeed for some pupils, they may find the changes quite distressing. I would reiterate that you do not have to return your child to school, and if you choose not to, then you have our full support. We will continue to provide learning online and staff will maintain regular contact with you and your family.

I will provide a further update on Friday 28th May via the school website. Thanking you in anticipation of your continuing support. Take care.

Yours sincerely

J M Hawkin

Headteacher

 

 

Dear Parents/Carers,

Please see below a letter from the CEO of GLF.  This is also attached as a document in our newsletter section on the website.

12 May 2020

Dear Parents and Carers

Following the Prime Minister’s address to the nation on Sunday evening and the release of further information last night from the Department for Education, we are beginning to read and interpret the advice.

We appreciate the possible anxiety around the details of the Government’s ‘road map’ to begin to remove the country from lockdown, especially in relation to children and young people returning to school.

We have heard the announcement at the same time as you, on Sunday evening, so we will need to take time to understand and unpick the details included in the Government’s guidance. We will work out how opening our schools for more children can be achieved safely as more details of the Government’s proposals emerge. We will keep you updated as we know more. However, in the interim period, please be assured that whatever happens every decision will take into account our absolute priority, which is the health and safety of our children, our students and our staff. We will not be rushing to make decisions that we later regret, so please bear with us while we take stock of the information as it emerges.

For the rest of this half term, your school remains open as it has in recent weeks - only for the children of key workers and children deemed vulnerable. We will continue to be providing free school meal vouchers for those who are eligible, and we are still waiting to hear further guidance regarding the previously promised laptop scheme for some year 10 students. It is GLF’s intention that:

1. In our ‘wider opening’ planning, we will consider the needs and entitlements of our children and young people in equal measure to the needs and entitlements of our colleagues;

2. We will continue to manage the many and complex risks as best as we possibly can;

3. We will continue to use advice from the UK’s Government, Civil Service, scientific and medical leaders to inform all of our immediate and medium-term planning;

4. Schools will remain as they are until we can ensure that we have sufficient staff in each school to keep your children safe;

5. Schools will remain as they are until there is clearer direction from the Government with regards to social distancing and other Covid-19-related guidance for schools. This will also determine who is to attend school and on which day, each week;

6. Each school is different in terms of its physical space. This will also contribute to which children will be able to attend school and on which day; and

7. Each school may have different ‘re-opening’ processes and procedures, such as delaying the return for children so that staff are able to meet together first and be briefed by Headteachers and school leaders (our school colleagues have not met together in their schools since March).

At this stage, please be reassured that Heads, the GLF Schools’ Leadership and our Trustees are all aware of the importance of accurate information before decisions are made and, subsequently, communicated with you. We do not wish to add to your burden at this time but we are conscious of the worry to your wider families if children and students return to school too quickly. In the meantime, the remote or home learning offered by each school will continue and will form part of our planned provision next half term.

We look forward to seeing children and young people back at our schools but only when the time is right and it is safe. Thank you for your continued support.

Yours sincerely

Jon Chaloner

 

Friday Newsletter  8th May

Good morning

I hope that everyone is staying safe and following government advice. 

I know that many of you spoke to your child’s class teacher this week.   The staff really appreciated being able to talk with you and your child.  I think the warmth and openness of the conversations really do reflect the great community spirit that we have at Hardwick. We have received lots of photographs and pictures of the work that you have all been doing, and they really do lift our spirits.  You are all doing a great job!     

I suspect like me, you are waiting anxiously to hear what comes out of Downing Street on Sunday.  I realise that many of you will be concerned about a return to school, but I can assure you it will not be school as we know it.  We are already starting to think about the modifications and adjustments that we will need to make, and we will only open when it is safe to do so.  I accept the current scientific advice may be that it does not affect children in the same way as it does adults.  However, it needs to be safe for all the adults who work in school, as well as you as parents.  

GLF are working hard to procure PPE equipment, gloves, soap and paper towels etc that can be distributed to schools.  As you will realise this is quite a challenge, and it is important that we don’t take supplies away from the NHS and care home.  We will not be able to return to school unless we have all the right equipment in place.  

Many of you will be marking VE day today.  What ever you are doing, I know that you will give those around you an extra big hug as we think about what the day might have looked like, and the friends and relatives that we can not be with.  

Stay at home and stay safe. 

Julie Hawkin

Head teacher

 

Dear Parents/Carers,

Please see below a message from Jon Chaloner, the CEO of GLF schools.

20 April 2020

Dear Parents and Carers

I write to welcome you to the summer term. Whilst we recognise that the summer term officially starts today, I would like to pay tribute to our heads and staff who have given their time to allow schools to continue to support the national effort over the last month, especially the last two weeks, including the Easter bank holidays in some cases. The collective GLF effort includes running childcare in schools for Key Worker families and contributing to the production of PPE materials for the NHS, local care and nursing homes and local hospices. The latter has also seen a remarkable number of children and students contributing, as well as doing their own fundraising with you for charities, especially local and essential foodbanks. Thank you for all that you have given in terms of community support since the school closures on 20 March.

As we start the new term, we continue with our provision of remote learning for our children and young people. At this stage, we should refrain from trying to predict when schools will reopen for all. We are on Day 11 of this different way of working and should continue to focus on this provision at this time.

Once the Government indicates a time for schools opening up, we shall make firm decisions then. Headteachers will, naturally, be making 'contingency plans' for returning but beyond that, nothing is certain. If, for instance, the Government's recommendation is for Years 6, 10 and 12 to return first then this will not affect our infant schools and our new primary schools without Year 6. Likewise, two of our seven secondary schools are new so do not have Year 10 and only three secondary schools have Year 12. I am elaborating these differences so that you appreciate any decisions to return will need to be 'GLF-wide' but not necessarily the same across our forty schools.

Please continue to bear with us as the new term begins in a way that was not foreseen earlier in 2020. We recognise how difficult it is for you to not be able to use schools in the usual way. Please use the contact details at the school for support or clarity when required, especially when taking into account your present situation with respect to the restrictions Covid-19 may be placing upon you. More importantly, please continue to take care of your loved ones and yourself.

With best wishes Jon Chaloner, CEO, GLF Schools

Friday 3rd March

Good morning

Hope everyone is safe and well.  

Nearly two weeks down and who knows how many more to go.  As we seem to be reaching the peak of the epidemic, it is really important that we must stay at home and stay safe. 

I know that the teachers have been working hard to provide you with work to do at home and that many of you have been in regular contact with them.  This is great!  I can tell from all the comments that everyone is trying to stay positive.  For the next two weeks the emphasis on home learning will change slightly, with more fun activities that you can do together, to reflect that the school would, under normal circumstances, be closed for Easter. 

The Governing Body did meet this week, and they acknowledged both the hard work of the staff, and the positive way in which the Hardwick community has responded. 

Today, under different circumstances, we would be marking Kirsty Benwell’s departure from Hardwick.  Sadly, we have been unable to formally thank her for all her hard work and dedication.  Many of you know that Kirsty kept the nursery running, when the Children Centre closed, and I am personally very grateful that she was willing to take on the challenge.  Kirsty, we wish you all the best, and hope that in the not to distant future you will be able to join us for one huge celebration. 

Wishing you all a peaceful and safe week. 

Take care

Julie Hawkin

Head teacher

 

Friday 27th March

Dear Parents/Carers and Children,

We hope that you have had a successful week with your home learning.  I know that lots of you have been enjoying Joe Wicks and Phonics at home, which is excellent to hear.  Keep up the great work.

Teachers will be posting more work ready for Monday - this will be ready for you to download by Sunday evening.

For those of you who recieve Free School Meals, it has been brought to our attention that there is a scam going around asking for your bank details.  Please DO NOT give out your details.  Those of you who are entitled to recieve Free School Meals have been contacted by the school.

Tuesday 24th March

Dear Parents/Carers,

I hope that you are all finding the home learning materials helpful.  We would advise that you create a daily timetable and try to stick to that during the week.  The Joe Wicks workouts are proving very popular and I hope that you have also found the online maths lessons useful.

Please remember to e-mail if you have any questions.

learning@hardwickschool.org

Sunday 22nd March

Dear Parents/ Carers,

As we prepare for a week of home learning, please remember to look at your child's class page.  Teachers are updating these ready for tomorrow.

Can I also share with you the following e-mail address:

learning@hardwickschool.org

If you have a question about your child's learning or want new ideas about how to support your child, please send an e-mail to the above address.  All teachers have access to this e-mail and will be chceking it regularly.

 

 

 

 

Dear Parents/Carers,

Thank you for your continued support over the last week.  We hope that you are all keeping well.  Please do continue to look at the website for regular updates.

Friday 20th March

In light of the published list of key workers, please do contact the school if you feel you fall under this category.  Obviously, we would ask that if children can be cared for at home by a spouse or partner then that is desirable.  The school closure is meant to limit the number of people gathering.  As always, please do contact us via e-mail - details below.

Thursday 19th March

School is still open tomorrow ( Friday) but will then be closed to most children from Monday.  We hope you are all keeping well.

NEW UPDATE     PLEASE READ *************

Following the announcement by the government at 5pm on Wednesday 18th March 2020 Hardwick School will be closed to all children/students except for children of key workers and vulnerable children from Monday 23 March.

We are awaiting the government to definitively define ‘key worker’, but in preparation for next week it would be helpful if you would be willing to inform us if your child has a parent or carer who is:  

  • Someone who works in the NHS
  • Someone who works for public services such as police or fire service or someone who is a delivery driver

Please let us know by calling the school tomorrow or e-mailing Claire Robertson ( Deputy Head)

 c.robertson@hardwickschool.org 

It would be helpful if we know by the end of the day ( Thursday)

Thank you.

 

Wednesday 18th March

Letters will be going home today with further advice from GLF.  We will also send an additional letter with reminders from school - please see below.

Dear Parents and Carers,

Please find attached a letter from Jon Chaloner the CEO of GLF school, updating you with the most recent guidance.

I would also like to take this opportunity to draw your attention to the following:

PLEASE REFER TO THE SCHOOL WEBSITE DAILY

www.hardwickschool.org

On the website you will see that there is a coronavirus update.  Please click on this to see updated information.

On the website, if you go to the menu, then scroll down to curriculum and click on this tab.  You will then see your child’s year group.  Please then click on this and you will see your child’s class page.  Staff will be uploading work to this page on a weekly basis if the school is closed.

HOME LEARNING PACKS

Packs have been sent home to support your child in the event of school closure.

TWINKL membership

Twinkl is a website that provides excellent learning resources.  In light of the current situation, they are offering all parents a free one-month membership.   You can access a huge variety of learning resources to support your child at home. Go to the following website: www.twinkl.co.uk/offer and enter the code: UKTWINKLHELPS

Safeguarding

If the school were required to close, we would like to draw your attention to the safeguarding page (under the information section) on the school website, should you have any concerns or worries during a school closure. Mrs Mckenzie-Blyth is available via e-mail should you require support or advice.  

Contact details are: h.mckenzie-blyth@hardwickschool.org

Please can we ask that you share this information with other members of our school community.

Thank you for your ongoing support.

Your sincerely,

Claire Robertson

PLEASE NOTE: From today ( Tuesday 17th March) all after school clubs will be cancelled.

Tuesday 17th March

Dear Parents and Carers,

In line with the most recent advice, we have asked all children and staff with underlying health issues and symptoms ( such as a cough and high temperature) to remain at home and begin a period of self-isolation for 14 days.  Family members of those with symptoms should also remain at home.  

As a school, we are working hard to ensure the health and safety of our school community and we would like to thank you for your support in these uncertain times.

Please continue to look at the website for regular updates.

Thank you once again.

 

Monday 16th March

We will aim to update the website daily with any news regarding the current situation.  Home learning packs will be sent home over the course of the next few days to support your child in the event of school closures.