Covid-19

KEXBOROUGH PRIMARY IS NOW CLOSED

Any urgent enquiries please contact the school office on 01226 382288 between the hours of 8.30am and 3.45pm or email kexboroughprimary@ecmtrust.co.uk.  Also our facebook page is regularly updated with information 

Update 29.05.20

Following the announcement from the Government and the subsequent guidance released from the DfE we have outlined how our school will re-open.

Please be assured that we will be doing everything we can to minimise risk to children, staff and their families during this time. Please see our Action Plan below for further details.

UPDATE 19.05.20

FAO Parents / Carers of children in FS1 and FS2

Thank you for your patience over the last couple of days whilst we, as a school, try to understand how the government guidance for the conditional, phased reopening will affect our school.

We have now gathered both the eligibility and demand for the children of key workers and the children in FS1 and FS2 are next on the priority list.

We are now asking you to make the decision as to whether your child will be attending school from 1 June 2020. In order to work to all the necessary time scales and to continue to allow us to collect information from groups that come further down the priority list we are asking for a response by 4:00pm tomorrow (Wednesday 20th May). As stated before the government is encouraging children to attend school if they are eligible. However, they have also stated that parents will not be fined if they make the choice to keep their children at home.

A full risk assessment cannot be completed until we are in full receipt of the facts and this includes the demand for places. I understand that seeing the risk assessment may have helped to inform your decision. However, I have created two documents (one for Foundation Stage 1 and one for Foundation Stage 2) which will hopefully answer any of the questions that you may have with regards to the conditional reopening. If you have seen the guidance it is easy to understand that Foundation Stage provision will look very different to ‘normal’ so I have tried to be as honest as I can be as to how the reopening could look, following the government guidance. These documents can be found below.

Could I please ask that you inform school whether your child will be attending or not either by telephone (01226 382288) or email (kexboroughprimary@ecmtrust.co.uk) by 4:00pm on Wednesday 20th May. Please do not provide your answer through the Facebook post. If you do have any further questions I will be able to respond to telephone calls and email requests tomorrow.

Thank you for you continued patience and cooperation.

Jane MacKay

UPDATE 18.05.20

Dear Parents and Carers,

Re: Possible Re-opening of School to Pupils

I know that in the past week you will have seen a great deal of coverage in the media about the Government’s announcement that, as part of their recovery strategy, schools could re-open as early as Monday 1st June to children in Nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 6. However, this date will only be confirmed by the government if the five key tests they have set justify the changes at that time. Until this time, nothing has changed – school will continue to open for vulnerable children and those of key workers who are unable to work from home only. I apologise in advance for this lengthy letter, but I would appreciate it if you could read it in its entirety as it contains key information.

Last week, on an almost daily basis, the Government released guidance to schools on how settings could implement protective measures to help them open safely. Four of these key guidance documents can be accessed via the links below if you are interested:

I am sure you will appreciate, after looking at the guidance, there are a number of issues that need to be considered and addressed before children in any of these year groups can return safely. I am currently liaising with other schools within the ECM Academy Trust, to consider the implications of the guidance and to plan how these measures can be implemented effectively. A thorough risk assessment, and subsequent action plan, will detail what a phased re-opening could look like for Kexborough Primary School. 

As you will be aware, every school is in a different situation and each one will have its own concerns. Be assured that my concern is to put the children and staff at Kexborough Primary School at the heart of all our decision making. I feel that I must be honest with you, and say that while we endeavour to plan to the very best of our abilities, school is very unlikely to feel like the familiar place that the children left in March (initially at least) and we will need to adjust. For example, Government guidance says a maximum class size of 15 children, but you will appreciate that this is not possible in many of our classrooms, in fact it is more realistic to have between 8 and 12 in a class if we are to apply the 2m social distancing expectation. Until I have a clearer picture of demand I cannot confirm all plans at this stage, but the class size and social distancing rules mean that

  • it will not be possible for all children to return to their familiar teacher.
  • it will not be possible for all children to return to their familiar classroom.
  • movement around school will be restricted.
  • break times and lunch times will be staggered and groups will remain separated.
  • children will not be allowed to mix with children placed in other “bubbles” (even if they are in the same year group)

Although school will do everything it can to ensure children are able and encouraged to socially distance, we must acknowledge that children in early years find it almost impossible to adhere to these guidelines, they are naturally sociable and are drawn to each other. The Government guidance itself acknowledges social distancing with young children is unlikely. The nature of the curriculum is designed to enable children to interact with each other and learn from each other however, if you read the guidance, we will be required to remove many resources from our Early Years setting to minimise the risk of transmission. This will mean children will be expected to learn in a different way. I am sharing this information because I feel, as parents, you have a right to know in order to help prepare your child and to inform your decision about their return to school.

I also feel I need to make you aware at this stage that if we decide we can safely welcome more children back after the 1st June it is unlikely that we will be in a position to safely welcome back all the year groups the Government has indicated on a full time basis. I may have to consider restricting the number of year groups we invite in, restricting the number of days we open for particular children and/or operating a rota system. This is particularly the case in Foundation Stage 1 where I am very conscious of space limitations. First and foremost I will always consider the needs of the children, their safety and wellbeing and meeting their needs.

I am very aware that it is a very unsettling time for us all at the moment, but rest assured that we’re going to be doing everything we can to make sure that when it is appropriate to re-open to more childrenwe will be as prepared and ready as we can be. I also need to inform you that priority for places in school will continue to be given to those who are considered vulnerable or the children of key workers, in accordance with Government guidance.

During this week, if we have not already done so, we will be contacting you if our information shows that your child falls into the priority groups or if your child is in any of the year groups that may be invited back into school. This is to allow us to plan for the safest possible return. It is vital that we receive a response to this communication to allow us to make accurate and detailed plans and to complete risk assessments. The Government is stating that children are strongly encouraged to attend school, unless they are self-isolating or they are clinically vulnerable (in which case they should follow medical advice). If someone in their household is extremely clinically vulnerable, they should not attend school.

I know that many of you will have concerns about whether it is possible for your child to return safely, without being put at risk and I want to reassure you that, as a parent of two children myself, I fully understand your anxieties. The Government has stated that parents will not be fined for non-attendance at this time but we would ask you to notify us so that we can maintain accurate records.

I would once again like to sincerely thank you for your continuous support and for helping your child learn from home.

As soon as I am able, I will contact you with further information. In the meantime, please all stay safe.

Warm regards,

Jane MacKay
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20.04.20

Dear Parents / Carers

I hope you all had a restful Easter break and I would like to welcome you back to the Summer term – even if for most of you it is a virtual return!

We have all (teachers, parents and children) had to adapt to new ways of working, so I wanted to take a moment to say what an amazing job you are doing supporting your child’s wellbeing and learning during this difficult and unprecedented period.

It has definitely been a strange and challenging time, so it is ok if you and your child feel wobbly and worried at the moment. (There have been moments in school where we have all felt the same!) We are here for you every step of the way as we work through and learn through this together. Remember, if you have any concerns about helping your child learn or you need any other support from the school, please let us know by contacting the school by telephone or email and someone will be available to talk to or a message will be taken and someone will call you back.

We really do miss the children very much and school feels very strange and different to the staff, but we must follow the government’s guidance to keep everyone in our community safe. So, we are carrying on with operating a provision in line with government guidance and I am very proud that we are able to offer this to all the amazing key workers currently ensuring that services can continue.  I am also extremely proud of all of the KPS key workers and I could not wish to be part of a more supportive and positive team.

However, just because we are not all in the same building, does not mean that we can’t stay in touch and complete some learning together. We will be continuing to use Seesaw for our children in Year 1 through to Year 6 and activities will be uploaded regularly which the children can complete. We fully understand the demands that home learning places upon you and your family life and we do not want to put anyone under any further or undue pressure during this time. Again, if you have any concerns or difficulties with the online and home learning please do not hesitate to contact us. We will be making contact with families over the coming days around online access and any difficulties that families may be experiencing. If you feel like your child would benefit from some “teacher encouragement” to complete their online learning please again, get in touch, and we will arrange for someone to contact them. Children in EYFS can upload all of the activities that they are completing to Tapestry and this will enable the EYFS team to keep in touch.

Another fantastic aspect to Seesaw is the fact that children can upload photographs, videos and voice recordings which is supporting them in sharing their fantastic learning at home beyond what is being added by teachers. We are all loving seeing the pictures of baking, photographs taken on walks around the area, the video challenges and all the other activities that are taking place in homes around the community. Please continue to upload these as we really do love to see them all. We are currently in the process of redoing all of the display boards in the KS2 hall to showcase all of the learning that is taking place at home and at school during this time.

As I am sure you know and understand, we can’t say yet when we’ll be able to open the school fully, but rest assured that we’ll continue doing our utmost to keep your child learning, support you in ensuring they are safe and as happy as they can be and to keep our school community connected.

Again, I just want to express my wholehearted gratitude for your patience, support and understanding during this time.

Jane MacKay

Head Teacher

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