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18th March 2020

Dear Parents and Carers,

Re. latest updates on COVID-19 or Coronavirus

As you know, for a second day the school has taken the decision to partially close, meaning students in Key Stage 3 are not on site. This is due to large numbers of staff who are self-isolating, following the Government’s announcement earlier this week.

We have made a decision that the school will be closed to all students in Years 7, 8, 9 and 12 tomorrow, Thursday 19th March 2020. The school is open as normal only for all students in Years 10, 11 and 13.

Any changes to arrangements during the school day will be communicated to parents in due course. Unfortunately we are unable to predict the situation, but we endeavour to keep you informed as soon as possible. If the situation changes considerably overnight we will of course communicate with you by 8am tomorrow. Your patience and understanding during this uncertain time is much appreciated.

Any students who are on site, must evacuate the school premises by 3.30pm daily. All after school activities have been cancelled until further notice. We will also be cancelling all school events published in the school calendar as per Government guidance. We will advise you of any rescheduled dates in due course. Parental meetings are also cancelled until further notice. Year 7 examinations scheduled for next week are postponed and we will communicate with you rearranged dates when things return to normal. The Spring concert at the end of the month has also been cancelled.

In the meantime, class teachers will set work for students via Google Classroom. Students should already have access to their accounts, but if required a guide on how to set-up Google Drive and Classroom and classroom codes can be found on the school website – https://www.sjcr.net/for-students/google-classroom/. It is imperative that students make use of the resources on Google Classroom, and communicate remotely with their teachers in order to continue their progress and learning.

As you would imagine in a school with excess of 1400 pupils we have a large number of pupils with pre-existing medical conditions. During the last two days we have contacted a number of parents to discuss any concerns they may have, or for them to share with us any specific medical support their child requires whilst they are in school. We appreciate that most parents are aware of the on-going medical and Government advice and are making decisions regarding their child’s needs and attendance to school accordingly.

Please continue to monitor any medical websites covering your child’s condition and how the pandemic may impact on them. We will continue to follow the guidance of Public Health England regarding general medical information and specific advice for those with serious medical conditions.
If you wish to discuss any medical issues relating to your child, please contact either Ms Jech or Mr Cameron at school.

We continue to follow the Government advice, and urge parents to do the same;

– staff, young people and children should stay at home if they are unwell with a new, continuous cough or a high temperature to avoid spreading infection to others. Otherwise they should attend education or work as normal

– if staff, young people or children become unwell on site with a new, continuous cough or a high temperature they should be sent home

– clean and disinfect regularly touched objects and surfaces more often than usual using your standard cleaning products

– supervise young children to ensure they wash their hands for 20 seconds more often than usual with soap and water or hand sanitiser and catch coughs and sneezes in tissues

Current advice remains in place: no education or children’s social care setting should close in response to a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 case unless advised to do so by Public Health England. The Chief Medical Officer has advised that the impact of closing schools on both children’s education and on the workforce would be substantial, but the benefit to public health may not be. Decisions on future advice to education or children’s social care settings will be taken based on the latest and best scientific evidence, which at this stage suggests children are a lower risk group.

The latest information from Public Health England for schools can be found via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-educational-settings-about-covid-19/guidance-to-educational-settings-about-covid-19#contents

We continue to do our best to enable learning, support and development for your children be it in school or remote learning.

As ever, we are trying to keep you updated though the guidance is changing daily and thank you for the messages of support and encouragement sent.

The school and all staff will try their upmost to communicate as efficiently and regularly as possible with parents and students during this school partial closure.

As usual, please continue to check the school website (www.sjcr.net) and social media accounts (@SJCRschool) for updates daily.

Yours sincerely,

 

Mr P Woods

Headteacher