In light of the school re-opening in June 2020, following a period of national lockdown, a thorough risk assessment has been undertaken by the school leadership team. As a result, a set of protocols have been devised which are designed to minimise the potential spread of COVID-19 at St Bede's. These have been shared with staff and governors, who have all had the opportunity to comment and contribute to them. The protocols will remain under a state of review as the situation evolves. A parent version of these protocols can be found below and all parents are asked to read these.
COVID-19 related FAQ for parents of children at St Bede’s
Who is the school open for from 2nd June 2020?
The school will be open for all children in Year’s R, 1 and 6 and for the children of key workers in other year groups.
Do I have to send my child back to school yet?
No, parents are encouraged to send their children back to school so that they can continue in their education, but are under no obligation to do so until further notice. No penalties will be given to parents who decide to keep their child at home.
What should my child wear and bring to school?
Children should wear PE kits with their school jumper on top, or shorts/t-shirt/tracksuit. No football shirts or ‘fashion’ clothes should be worn. Children are asked to bring in a pencil case with a small amount of their own stationary (including pen/pencil, ruler, rubber, pencil sharpener) if possible, although stationary will be provided for any child who does not have their own.
Are school meals still available?
Yes, although all school meals will be ‘packed lunch’ style meals. Hot food will be served on some days.
What about PPE?
Government guidance states, “Wearing a face covering or face mask in schools or other education settings is not recommended”
Staff will only wear PPE when;
- a child whose care routinely already involves the use of PPE due to their intimate care needs.
- a child becomes unwell with symptoms of coronavirus while in their setting and needs direct personal care until they can return home. A face mask should be worn by the supervising adult if a distance of 2 metres cannot be maintained. If contact with the child or young person is necessary, then gloves, an apron and a face mask should be worn by the supervising adult. If a risk assessment determines that there is a risk of splashing to the eyes, for example from coughing, spitting, or vomiting, then eye protection should also be worn.
However, if anyone in the school feel particularly anxious about the need to wear PPE, the school leadership team will be open to a dialogue with them about how they can be supported to do so.
How will you limit the risk of infection for my child?
Due to the age of the children who will be returning, social distancing will be a challenge and it is widely acknowledge that strict social distancing cannot be guaranteed. However, we will employ the following measures to reduce contact between persons on the school site:
- smaller class sizes - with a maximum of 15/16 children per class
- rearrange classrooms - ensuring desks are spaced out as far as possible.
- limit mixing - children will stay in their groups and be assigned specific staff members
- staggered timetables - Limiting number of children on lunch and breaks, changes to pick up and drop off times
- minimising contact with individuals who are unwell by ensuring that those who have coronavirus symptoms, or who have someone in their household who does, do not attend school
- cleaning hands more often than usual - wash hands thoroughly for 20 seconds with running water and soap and dry them thoroughly or use alcohol hand rub or sanitiser ensuring that all parts of the hands are covered
- ensuring good respiratory hygiene - promote the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach
- cleaning frequently touched surfaces often using standard products, such as disinfectant
Will online work continue for children who do not come into schools?
For those children who are unable to attend school, our online work will continue to be set. However as all teachers will be focusing primarily on the classes in school, some of this may be reduced a little, for example, videos will no longer be produced.
Will Breakfast and After-School run as normal?
No. these will be closed until further notice, as will all extra-curricular clubs that currently take place after school.
I’m planning to keep my child off school for the time being. Do I need to inform you when I would like them to return?
It would helpful if you could let us know a day or two before your child returns to school, that they are coming back.
What will happen at drop off and collection times?
A full explanation can be found in our school protocols which all parents are asked to read.