Letter from the Headteacher - 11.9.2020

Dear Parent / Carer

I hope this finds you well and that you have had a good week? I wanted to get in touch at the end of our first week back in school and give you an update on how things have gone.

First of all, I would like to thank you as parents and carers for all your support with our reopening. It has been a positive, successful but very challenging week in school with staff and students having to cope with a huge amount of change. As always, the students have been polite, calm, responsible and reliable, which has made things so much easier. However, asking them to get used to a new one-way system on the school site, new times for breaks and lunches, modified classrooms and a lot of different expectations has been a big ask. There have been a few teething problems and as today is our first day with all students on site we will keep observing, learning and adjusting things until we get it right.

The main things for the students to remember are to act sensibly and safely on site and to stay in their year group “bubble.” I have done a whole school assembly, on Zoom, this morning focussed on why we have made the changes and how they can help us make it happen.

The key areas to focus on are:

  • Arrive on time fully equipped and go into your form rooms for 8:15am.
  • Sanitise your hands on arrival and when you enter each class.
  • Leave lessons or social times on the bell and move quickly to the next session so to avoid groups of students in other year groups.
  • Behave responsibly on corridors and in classrooms, doing your best to keep 2m distance from all adults.
  • Adhere to the one-way system, stay in your allocated social area and wear a face covering on corridors and in social areas.

During the assembly I spoke at length with the students about face coverings. Surprisingly not many students have been wearing them in social areas or corridors since we came back to school despite our clear recommendation to do so. This has caused concern amongst staff, students and parents. Therefore, from this morning, we have put in place a big drive to ensure that students understand that wearing a face covering is the “right thing to do” so that school can be as safe as possible. The expectation is that face coverings are worn in corridors, social areas and on the bus. Our staff will be urging students to do this all the time but, as we have no legal backing to enforce this, we really need parental support to ensure students understand the importance of the message. The bus companies have made it clear that their drivers will not be enforcing the wearing of face coverings so it really is about your child doing the right thing as they travel to and from school as well as moving around our buildings.

I would also like to remind parent of the procedures in place to manage any possible cases of COVID-19 in school:

  • If your child or someone in your household or support bubble show any symptoms of COVID-19 at home, your child must not attend school. Please contact Mrs Boardman for Years 7 – 11 and Mrs Smith for years 12 and 13 on 01535 632861 as soon as you become aware that your household or social bubble will need to self-isolate.
  • If your child shows symptoms of COVID-19 whilst at school, they will be removed from lessons and isolated in an empty classroom. We will call home immediately and ask you to collect your child. We would then expect you to follow the Test, Track and Trace procedure and to contact school with any relevant information.
  • Students may wear face coverings in the classrooms if recommended by their GP.
  • The school will follow local health team advice when managing any confirmed cases of COVID-19 amongst the school community.

Underneath this is a seperate document from Mr Bell, which gives clarity about managing confirmed cases of COVID-19 amongst the school community.

Finally, I would like to assure parents that, even though the site and routines look very different at the moment in order to keep everyone safe, South Craven still adheres to the same ethos as we always have, we are here to support your child in whatever way we can and continue to develop successful South Craven Learners, who will be able to flourish in adulthood, no matter where life takes them. Heads of Year and form tutors are always available via email if you have any concerns about your child’s wellbeing or learning

I hope that you have a lovely weekend and that your child is not too tired after this week. I look forward to doing it all again on Monday.

Martyn Hill

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