School Reopening 8.3.21

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2/3/2021
 
 
Dear Parents/ carers,
 
 
We understand that this has been a difficult and challenging time for all parents/ carers and pupils. We also know that parents/ carers will now want to ensure their child is able to return to school in a safe learning environment. We would like to reassure you that we have taken every measure to ensure your child's health and wellbeing and are closely following the Department for Education guidance and expectations. It is therefore essential for all children to return to school to minimise, as far as possible, the longer-term impact of the pandemic on children's education, wellbeing, and wider development. We believe that missing out on more time in the classroom risks pupils falling further behind. Those with higher overall absence tend to achieve less well in both primary and secondary school.
 
If you have any anxieties about your child's return to school, please contact the school, and we will be happy to discuss further to support you. The weather is still changeable, so we would advise that you ensure that there is adequate warm clothing in your child's bag.
 
Compulsory Attendance and Reporting of Absence
School attendance will be compulsory for all pupils again from 8th March 2021. This means that the usual rules on school attendance will apply. Please note:
  • It is parents'/ carers duty to ensure their child attends regularly at the school where the child is a registered pupil.
  • Parents/ carers should contact school on the first day of any unavoidable absence and subsequent days in line with the school policy.
  • It is school's responsibility to record attendance in the register and follow up absence. If no reason has been given for any absence schools will follow their escalation procedure and safeguarding procedures which may include contacting other emergency contacts and referrals to CSAWS.
  • There is the option to issue sanctions, including Fixed Penalty Notices in line with the Local Authority Codes of Conduct where all other actions have failed to secure regular attendance.
  • It is parents'/ carers responsibility to ensure that in the best interests of the safety and wellbeing of all children your child arrives at school on time (allocated start times have/will be provided) 
 
Shielding
The advice for pupils who have been confirmed as Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV) is to shield and stay at home as much as possible until further notice. They are advised not to attend school whilst shielding, and this advice applies nationally. Access to remote learning will be provided for these children. We would request that you provide school with a copy of your child's shielding letter sent to CEV children, to confirm that they are advised not to attend school or other educational settings whilst shielding guidance is in place.
 
Self Isolation
Children should not attend schools if they are required to self-isolate in line with PHE and DFE guidance and legislation ie:
 
They or a household member are unwell with a new continuous cough or high temperature or has a loss of, or change in, their normal sense of taste or smell or; They have had a positive test result themselves; Or because they are a close contact of someone who has coronavirus (COVID-19);
 
In these circumstances, parents/ carers must follow government advice on test and trace and self-isolating. Pupils will be provided with access to remote learning in these circumstances, and parents/carers must be proactive in accessing testing and keep school informed of the results of any testing.
 
If you are unsure if your child should attend school please contact the school who will offer advice and guidance or signpost you to the relevant service.
 
Please note where children are not able to attend school as parents/ carers are following clinical and/or public health advice, absence will not be penalised.
 
Pupils and families who are anxious about returning to school
We are aware that many pupils, parents/ carers, and households may be reluctant or anxious about returning to school especially if they shielded previously but have been advised that this is no longer necessary or live with a family member who is Clinically Extremely Vulnerable. We are happy to discuss any concerns and give you more details regarding the measures we have put in place to reduce the risk in school. We will be working closely with other professionals as appropriate to support all our pupils return to school, this includes CSAWS who may contact you if there are attendance related issues.
 
For further information regarding attendance the schools attendance policy is available on the school website.
 
Yours Sincerely
 
 
Marina Ryley
Assistant Head Teacher