COVID-19 – Information

Current Information

(Please scroll down for previous chronological updates)

 

Remote learning plans – how we intend to teach your children remotely:

 

2021 Remote Learning Plans

COVID catch up funding report 2020/2021

 

 

Critical email 4th January 2021

 

Dear Families,
 
Further to yesterday’s email I can now confirm the action being taken by school.
 
It has been unanimously decided that from Tuesday 5th January our school will move to remote learning until Friday 15th January 2021. On that day (and possibly before if the climate changes) I will write out to all families and confirm our plans for the week beginning Monday 18th January 2021.
 
We are able to provide face-to-face education for key worker and vulnerable children from tomorrow. To secure your child’s place please could you book your child in via Scopay before the end of today so that we have an official register and are able to maintain our safeguarding arrangements. If your child accessed school during the first lockdown because you were able to provide us with a key-worker letter, then you do not need to provide any further evidence. If, however, you would like to send your child in to school because you now have key worker responsibilities then we would need evidence of this by tomorrow morning (email from your workplace or physical letter is fine).
 
If your child is not attending school from tomorrow and you have booked wrap around care for them, please edit the option on Scopay by choosing ‘No choice for this day’.
 
For the next two school weeks, if you choose not to send your child to school we will support this and the attendance policy will not be applied. We ask that you reply to this email with relevant information around attendance.
 
Breakfast and after school club remain available for keyworker and vulnerable children but, for the next two weeks, there will be no Fizzy Tree or Team Theme after school club. Music lessons with Mrs Taylor-Fox are hoped to be held remotely – more details will follow later in the week around this.
 
Tomorrow will be the first day of the Spring term and teachers will begin the remote learning sessions –  some staff will be in school and some will be working remotely. By 9am tomorrow morning, you will have a zoom link from your child’s teacher with instructions to be followed. Attached with this email is a letter found also on our website detailing what remote learning may look like.
 
Paper packs of school work will be available for collection on Tuesday and Wednesday from school – these will support the remote learning for your child. We ask that you organise the collection of these materials – possibly co-ordinating with other families to reduce the number of people coming to school (keeping to the current tier 4 regulations though at all times). Please avoid the usual drop off and collection times to reduce numbers  of adults at school.
 
We appreciate that many families have more than one child attending our school and that there are likely to be sessions clashes. If you would like a zoom recording to be able to access later so that devices can be shared, we can facilitate this. If you have no computer for your child to work on, please inform me as soon as possible. We have one laptop from the DfE which we can release to a family.
 
For those children attending school tomorrow, please meet our usual uniform expectations. PE wear can still be worn if it is an expected PE day although your child’s timetable will be adapted for these next two weeks and it may not be the same as it has been previously.
 
Our lollipop lady Sharon, as you know, will not be with us this term so myself and Mr Goulds will cross the children safely onto the school site. May I take this opportunity to remind all families that from this term onwards we ask that no adult comes onto the school site in the morning, additional staff will be outside to support the arrival of infant children.
 
To continue the protection of staff who will be entering the building in the coming days, we will be encouraging the use of PPE including the use of face masks. We would ask that you share this information with children to help prepare them for this visual change.
 
All changes made to our plans are not linked to unsafe practice. Governors, staff and parents view the actions we have taken so far to minimise the risk of COVID-19 transmission as effective. Concerns being raised now are due to the hugely significant rise in numbers of positive virus cases both locally and nationally.  I wholly appreciate the difficulties this may present many of you with and for any disruption it has caused you have our complete sympathies.
 
There will be new and regular information coming out to you this week with updates and links so I thank you in advance of your attention to these documents.
 
With best wishes for this new year and hopes for a smoother Spring time.
 
Kind regards,
 
Mrs Sarah Roach
Head Teacher
 
Mrs J Hayhurst
Chair of Governors
 
St Mary and St Andrew’s Catholic Primary School
Station Lane,
Barton,
Preston
PR3 5DY
01772 862335
 
We are guided by God to be the best people we can be.
 
 

Help and Useful Links

The DfE has released a supportive document for parents to help identify the symptoms of coronavirus and related actions. Please read the document here.

23rd September – PHE letter to parents and guardians

re-opening risk assessment September 2020 (1)

Department for Education Coronavirus helpline – this helpline has been set up to answer questions about the virus related to education. Staff, parents and young people can contact the helpline.

♦  Phone: 0800 046 8687

♦  Email: coronavirushelpline@education.gov.uk

♦  Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday)

For latest information and advice from Lancashire County Council visit:

https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/health-and-social-care/your-health-and-wellbeing/coronavirus/

Further links:

Advice for parents and carers on looking after the mental health and wellbeing of children or young people during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak

Guidance for schools colleges and local authorities on maintaining educational provision

Information for parents and carers about the opening of early years providers, schools and colleges, safety in schools, attendance, transport, school meals and exams.

Guidance used to plan for the return of pupils.

The specific text relating to primary schools is extracted from the ‘Planning guide for primary schools’ which in section 4 this states that:

Inviting back additional pupils, where there is capacity

We know that in some schools, there will be capacity to welcome more children back, in group sizes of no more than 15, before the summer holidays. This may be because take-up amongst eligible children is lower than expected, or because there is additional space still available within the school and available staff to teach and supervise.

There is no expectation on primary schools to welcome back additional children where they do not have capacity to do so. Primary schools should only welcome back additional children where:

  • they have already made provision available for children of critical workers, vulnerable children, and children in nursery, reception, year 1 and year 6 and have ensured as many as possible are able to attend (especially for those who would particularly benefit from being in school because of other disadvantage)
  • they can accommodate more children while still following the approaches set out in the protective measures guidance and their own risk assessment
  • they do not require additional funding, staff or classrooms to do so. If schools have access to space on other school sites (for example, local secondary schools, if that is feasible alongside the secondary offer) they may use this, taking care to ensure children stay in allocated groups. However, other community buildings (such as village halls) should not be used to expand capacity this term, while they remain closed in line with the government’s roadmap.

When deciding how to welcome additional pupils back before the summer, schools should consider how they will communicate to parents, including those with children in reception, year 1 or 6 who have not yet taken up their offer of a place. Schools should ascertain if those parents want to take up the offer, making it clear that if they indicate that they do not, or do not respond, schools may offer this capacity to another pupil in which case they won’t subsequently be able to take up a place this term. They should ensure they are still able to accommodate vulnerable children and children of critical workers.

 

 
NHS information
 

If someone begins to self-isolate because they have symptoms similar to coronavirus (COVID-19) and they get a test which delivers a negative result, they feel well and no longer have symptoms similar to coronavirus (COVID-19), they can stop self-isolating. They could still have another virus, such as a cold or flu – in which case it is still best to avoid contact with other people until they are better. Other members of their household can stop self-isolating.

If someone tests positive, they should follow the guidance for households with possible or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infection and must continue to self-isolate for at least 10 days from the onset of their symptoms and then return to school only if they do not have symptoms other than cough or loss of sense of smell/taste. This is because a cough or anosmia can last for several weeks once the infection has gone. The 10-day period starts from the day when they first became ill. If they still have a high temperature, they should keep self-isolating until their temperature returns to normal. Other members of their household should continue self-isolating for the full 14 days. You must inform school of all test results.

 

COVID – HOME/SCHOOL AGREEMENT

 

Bubble Closure – Positive Case

Wednesday 11 November

 

COVID Direct Contact Letter (Eagles Class)

COVID All Parents Advice

 

Update from Governors Friday 19 June

 

Dear Families

I hope that you are all keeping well during this difficult time. Your support for Mrs Roach and all the staff in their efforts to enable remote learning for all pupils, and on-site support for some, has been much appreciated. 

I write on behalf of the board of governors to address queries expressed recently by some parents and I hope that by doing so I can give you some indication of our approach to this constantly changing world in which we find ourselves.

The health and wellbeing of staff and pupils has been at the heart of all our actions during this pandemic. We continue to take into account national government guidance included in the document ‘Education and childcare during coronavirus’.   Specifically relevant at this time is the advice contained withinPolicy paper; Actions for education and childcare settings to prepare for wider opening from 1 June 2020, Updated 16 June 2020’. In addition we consider the local guidance including that given by Lancashire County Council’s Director of Public Health as well as the Lancaster Diocese.

This information has enabled us to establish a school environment with minimised risk of infection and the prescribed ‘bubbles’ of children and staff that have operated in recent weeks. This has allowed us to accommodate an increasing number of children of critical workers, as prioritised by national government.

Every school is an individual environment. The ability of our school to open more widely to children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 is impacted by our own circumstances. Staffing constraints, whereby we are restricted in the number of staff who can be present in school, dictate the number of ‘bubbles’ that we can operate within safe guidelines. The willingness of Mrs Stanley Smith to work additional days has facilitated an extra Key Stage 2 ‘bubble’ to accommodate larger numbers of children of critical workers in this age range. The decision to open to reception children is in line with government expectations for the order in which places should be made available and the small numbers involved make this possible at this time. Unfortunately, as Mrs Roach has indicated, we are not in a position to offer on-site provision to Year 1 or Year 6. I hope that extra support with transition is forthcoming from relevant secondary schools.

Staff appreciate that remote learning is difficult to maintain over such a prolonged period but, I can assure you that much thought has gone into trying to ensure that a range of activities are provided to appeal to different learning styles and care is taken to ensure that the level is appropriate for each child. As you will know, there is no requirement to follow the National curriculum, nor is formal assessment expected. However, staff are aware of the involvement of children in their remote learning and offer regular feedback about achievements and advice for more focus when needed. It is undoubtedly a challenge for you to oversee all this home learning whilst the country opens more widely requiring more individuals to meet expectations of employers keen to open businesses and workplaces.

Moving forwards, as you will be aware from news reports, there is no more guidance forthcoming from the government with regard to the opening of schools in England in September. Any plans that we make are going to be on a short term basis until this changes. We cannot waste energy planning practical aspects of a return without knowing what expectations there will be, or more importantly what health and safety requirements will be clear for that time. Having said that, it is not true to say that preparations for September are not being made within school. In particular there will be a curriculum tailored to the particular circumstances that we find ourselves in at that stage. This will take into account the need to nurture wellbeing in the children as well as the need to assess academic levels and ongoing needs. This will enable planning to take place to address any regression or lack of progress that have resulted from such prolonged absence from formal education. I can assure you that Mrs Roach will avail our school of any extra support available to us, such as that identified this morning regarding tutoring arrangements to enable children to catch up with their learning.

In many ways this ‘opening up’ stage in dealing with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic is more difficult to manage, as the differing circumstances for individuals and establishments become apparent.  As the threat to health and life remains, albeit at a lower level according to the government’s most recent announcement, we emerge cautiously into a much changed landscape. I want to assure you that Mrs Roach, the staff and the governing board of the school will do everything we can to ensure that St Mary and St Andrew’s remains a place of nurture and learning for the children in our care.

Take care, stay safe. 

Kind regards

Jo Hayhurst

Chair of governors

 

Update & Resources Friday 19 June

 

Dear families,

I hope you are all well and the children are too.

Home learning

Next week’s home learning is going to take a slightly different shift. We are going to send you the maths and English units as usual and alongside that will be a powerpoint for each of the different year groups, please select the appropriate one for your child. These new materials contain information we would have been delivering to your children as part of our Human relationships and sex education. 

They are written within the boundaries of the Lancaster diocese and are very much centered around personal relationships; those which we have with each, our families and friends and God.

I would ask you to take your time to look at the materials and see if you are happy to go through the information with your child; for many families it can lead to really healthy and helpful conversations and occasionally allow a young person to talk about things that may be worrying them about their body or personal changes they may have noticed. 

As a school we have elected not to teach about conception, deciding that the children are best equipped to arrive at high school with a full understanding of bodily changes and that you as a family can make the decision as to when your child is taught about this.

Purple mash

There will be minimal purple mash sent home this week as your helpful feedback is highlighting that some children might need a break from this type of learning – there will be some available for those who find it useful.

Each teacher will continue to present a zoom session and I will be delivering them for Robins and Wrens as usual. For the children we don’t get to see on these sessions we will try to make contact with just to check in and see how they are doing. If you would prefer to send us an email to let us know how things are then that would be fine also.

End of year reports

Finally, in early July we will be sending out end of year reports. The teachers are writing these at the moment but as you can imagine, not having seen most of the children for almost four months has made this an incredibly difficult task. To that end, the reports will not be as detailed as they have been previously and will present you with how your child was achieving by the end of the February half term when our last formal assessments took place. We fully appreciate things are different now; gaps in learning may well have appeared, motivation may have been lost or some may be absolutely soaring – having conquered skills that simply needed time and practise. Please do not worry about any gaps you have identified. We are working tirelessly to build a recovery curriculum which will assess and address these issues. Hold on to the fact this is a national picture, for the first time ever we are all in the same situation – we will get the children back to being happy and engaged learners with motivation, resilience and knowledge.

Year six

It is hoped by now you have received your transition materials from your child’s high school, please do contact them if you still have had no communication.

As you know from my previous emails, we are continually looking at ways in which we can celebrate your child’s time here with us. To safely celebrate with parents and children together is still not allowed therefore we are currently considering if we can organise a socially distanced picnic in the school grounds in the last week of term for the children only. This would naturally be weather dependent and have to be confirmed nearer the time but we are hopeful of some more good weather. Currently, the legislation guides us that we can only have 15 children in one indoor location at a time and therefore we would be reluctant to do a lunch inside for them (if the weather was inclement) as the whole cohort could not be together. We will be in touch with our plans as they unfold – let’s continue to pray for sunshine!

Kindest regards,
Mrs Sarah Roach
Head Teacher

Journey in Love Year R

Journey in Love Year 1

Journey in Love Year 2

Journey in Love Year 3

HRSE Journey in Love Year 4 & 5

HRSE Journey in Love Year 6

 

Update Wednesday 17 June – EYFS

 

Good morning families,

I am delighted to confirm that we can welcome your reception child back to school on a part time basis from next Wednesday.

Please read the detailed letter attached and don’t hesitate to get in touch with me if I can be of any help at all.

For the families who would like to keep their children with them at home, thank you for sharing this information with us and we fully support your decision to do this.

Home learning will still be sent home to support you in this time.

Warmest wishes to you all,

Mrs Sarah Roach

EYFS Return to school Letter

Update Wednesday 17 June – whole school

 

Good morning everyone,

No thunder so far today so I hope you are outside enjoying the lovely sunshine.

Following on from the wider opening email I sent you at the beginning of this week I can now confirm school’s plans for the rest of this summer term.

We are open for key workers and vulnerable children as we have been since the beginning of lock down, as more and more families are now returning to work our numbers of these two groups have significantly increased. In addition to that, and with particular thanks to Mrs Stanley Smith who is increasing her working week by another three days, we are able to welcome back children in reception. If you are a keyworker and have not replied to Monday evening’s email indicating your request for a place for your child, please could you do so by tomorrow at the latest so that we can ensure safe staffing ratios.

It is with sadness we are unable to open more widely to children of other year groups, particularly in Y1 and Y6 as recommended, but we continue to operate on a skeleton staffing structure and our risk assessment does not allow us to safely open for more than the above group.

In many ways, this email saddens me as it confirms we will not see many of you before September. The decisions taken the entire way through lockdown have been guided by safety and maintaining the good health of the staff and children who have attended since we partially closed. The staff have been fantastic in adapting to all the changes thrust upon us and I would like to thank them for the work they have done in providing excellent home learning opportunities including the project work of Wild Wednesdays – this continues to be a wonderful project both at home and at school. All of my team have worked tirelessly to ensure that school is safe, happy and that the children have remained so too – we are a blessed school.

I will continue to be in touch over the final few weeks of term and keep you up to date with changes as and when they are shared with us.

In the meantime, thank the children from us for continuing with their home learning – we look forward to seeing them on the zoom lessons next week.

With warmest wishes,

Mrs Sarah Roach and all the team.

Mrs Jo Hayhurst, Chair of Governors 

Resources Thursday 11 June

 

Dear families and friends,

Please find attached some support resources to help us all maintain our mental wellness. During lockdown, and its gradual easing, it is hugely important to look after ourselves so that we have the capacity to look after one another.

Take care, Mrs Roach

Episode 1 – Anxiety 

Episode 2 – Communicating about Mental Health

Episode 3 – Social Media & Self Image

Episode 4 – Stress & Coping Strategies

Episode 5 – Depression

Episode 6 – Eating Disorders & Body Image

Episode 7 – Beliefs, Self-Esteem & Confidence

Episode 8 – Resilience, Peer-Pressure & Bullying

Episode 9 – Mindfulness & Visualisation

 

 

Update Monday 8 June

 

Dear families and friends,

I hope you are all well and are keeping safe in these troubled times.

As promised, I write to you today with the very latest information from Dr Sakthi Karunanithi who guides LCC on matters of public health. At 11am this morning, this was the information I received. An excerpt is copied here for you.

The guidance from Lancashire County Council’s Director of Public Health that schools should not open to more pupils remains unchanged.

Dr Sakthi Karunanithi has advised schools to delay reopening to Reception, Year 1, and Year 6 pupils because, in his professional view, two of the government’s five coronavirus tests are not currently being met in the county. Although the number of new cases has decreased, Lancashire and the North West has a high number of cases compared to many other regions in the country.

Similarly, although the weekly death count in Lancashire is showing a downward trend, a consistent decline is not being seen in all areas, and in recent weeks we have seen an increase. It has also been widely reported that the R value for the North West is above 1.

There has been positive work between local organisations to plan for outbreaks in Lancashire, but better information sharing from the national to local level is still required.

Lancashire people have worked so hard throughout the epidemic in keeping the virus at bay. With various national lockdown measures lifting, we need to remain vigilant in following social distancing rules to help prevent the infection spreading.

The guidance, which also applies to early years settings such as nurseries and childminders, will be reviewed again on 15 June.

The decision to welcome back more pupils to Lancashire’s schools lies with head teachers, in consultation with their board of governors, taking into account their individual circumstances. The county council works closely with schools to provide advice and support. As has been the case throughout the emergency, all schools are encouraged to admit vulnerable pupils and those of key workers as long as their risk assessments suggest it is safe to do so.

Dr Karunanithi said: “I have carefully considered all of the information and data and, for now, my advice remains unchanged. Although there are significantly fewer numbers of cases currently, I am concerned about the high level of infections in the county when compared with others parts of England. The death rates are not sustainably decreasing in the county, and reports that the R value is above 1 in the North West should be an early warning sign. It is important to stress that the R value is only one part of the overall picture, it appears to be rising in most parts of Lancashire.

“We still need better information sharing from national colleagues to help us unlock a successful test and track programme, although agencies are working well locally.”

“Ultimately we all have a role to play in this – we must follow social distancing rules, practice good hand hygiene, and stay at home if we have a cough, fever, loss of smell or taste or when asked to do so by the contact tracing programme. If we all play our part – national government, local partners and the public – we can contain this virus.”

County Councillor Phillippa Williamson, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Schools, said: “Everyone wants to see children back in school as soon as it is safe for this to happen and, although we are seeing some progress, we must support the professional judgement of our public health experts.

And so, inline with our previous plans of remaining open for the children of key workers and vulnerable children only, I regrettably inform you that there will be no wider opening to children from different year groups any time soon at our school.

We will absolutely continue with our regular communication – telephone calls, zooms and emails – and we thank you for your overwhelmingly supportive, kind and helpful responses you have shared with us.

As always, if you need any support from school, please do not hesitate to contact us immediately – we are here to help in anyway we can.

With huge thanks for the work you are undertaking with your children,

Mrs Sarah Roach (HT)

Mrs Jo Hayhurst (Chair of Governors)

All the amazing team at SMSA.

 

Resources Tuesday 2 June

 

Good morning everyone,

Here is your latest online safety activities.

This week the focus is on staying safe when sharing images – something really relevant for all children and as such, I have included the information for teenagers in case any of you feel it is relevant for your older children.

Don’t do any of this today – it looks like today might be the last of the good weather, make the most of it!

 

Take good care,

Mrs Sarah Roach

 

Home Learning Information Thursday 28 May

 

Dear families,

I hope you are well and enjoying the half term.

From June 1st we will be continuing our home learning units of work and I am delighted to say that Mrs James will be leading this for all year groups. She will, of course, be ably informed by your child’s class teachers but it is Mrs James who will be your point of contact on all matters regarding home learning.

Units of work will be sent out on Monday for you to access. 

There will be the English units you are familiar with, led by the Lancashire development team; we have purchased White Rose Maths for all year groups now so you will have the video and resource materials to support your teaching; Reading will be guided through the Purple Mash resources; RE will be focusing on the feast of Pentecost and then the greater majority of all other work will be topically themed.

Mrs James has joined forces with some excellent services and will be sharing with you the nature work and ‘Wild Wednesdays’ she has planned. There will be lots of opportunities to work outside and show off your children’s creative imaginations – so much of which we have seen so far. The photographs and images many of you have been sending has been wonderful, thank you for this, it really helps us to know that the work we have been doing has been helpful to you and your children.

Please can I reassure you that even though your child may not be attending school, all learning is learning! Many families have reached out to us asking for more work, less work, emotional or behavioural support for your child, please know that we truly understand the difficulties faced by everyone at the moment. I would like to take this opportunity to remind you that the work we send home is to support you, not add to your already enormous workload. These units are optional and in no way will they inform our assessments of your child when they return safely to us. If you can’t get through the work load then please don’t worry about it, there is always more than you need so that you can dip in and out of any supporting materials. If we notice that your child is not accessing much of the learning we may well send you a text/phonecall/email to see if there is anything we can do to help and to check that everyone is ok. I would also ask that if you need any help or support please do get in touch with school, we are here to help.

This evening, the Prime Minister will be announcing his plans for the wider reopening of schools across the county. I would you urge you to read today’s earlier email to more deeply understand our school’s position on this matter.

But other than that, it is time to fill the paddling pool, get out the suncream and make another batch of ice lollies. Please take good care of yourselves and one another

With very best wishes to you all

Mrs Sarah Roach

Update Thursday 28 May

 

Good morning everyone,

What glorious weather we are having for half term – most unusual – so I really hope you are making the most of it.

Last night, our local authority public health department issued urgent guidance and advice around the wider opening of schools in Lancashire.

As you know from our earlier letters I believed it to be too soon to open school to the wider year groups and as such have welcomed back only key worker and vulnerable children from the 1st June. In the extract I have attached for you below you will see that the Local Authority has now written out to all schools with the same guidance – that it is not safe to open schools to wider year groups.

I know many of you will be saddened by this information but please rest assured the health and well-being of our school community continues to drive forward all decisions.

Please do keep well, enjoy the sunshine and we will be in touch on Monday with the new home-learning plans, and email regarding this is to follow shortly.

With best wishes to you all

Mrs Sarah Roach

COVID19 Bulletin – 27th May 2020 from Lancashire County Council

Advice to schools on reopening to more pupils

Summary

Lancashire County Council is advising schools in the county not to open to more pupils from 1 June, but instead to continue with the current arrangements. This is because, in our assessment, we do not currently meet all five of the government’s tests in Lancashire which would allow this decision to be taken safely.

We will regularly review the situation and provide further advice so that we can advise schools to open to more pupils as soon as we judge it safe to do so.

We are actively encouraging schools to follow this advice. 

Government advice for schools and parents

The government has released the following direction under scientific guidance regarding the re-opening of schools on June 1st:

Nurseries and other early year providers, including childminders, are to begin welcoming back all children.

Primary schools are to welcome back children in nursery (where they have them), reception, year 1 and year 6.

Secondary schools, sixth form, and further education colleges are to begin some face to face support with year 10 and 12 pupils. We do not expect these pupils to return on a full-time basis at this stage.

Local assessment

The government’s five tests are outlined below:

Protect the NHS’s ability to cope. We must be confident that we are able to provide sufficient critical care and specialist treatment right across the UK.

See a sustained and consistent fall in the daily death rates from Covid-19 so we are confident that we have moved beyond the peak

See that the rate of infection is decreasing to manageable levels across the board, although we don’t see the results of all tests in a timely manner. In addition, we are starting to see social distancing not being followed everywhere across the county which poses the risk of new cases to rise.

Be confident that the range of operational challenges, including testing capacity and PPE, are in hand, with supply able to meet future demand. 

Be confident that any adjustments to the current measures will not risk a second peak of infections that overwhelms the NHS. 

Locally, we are currently able to meet the requirements of the first three tests; however, we do not meet the requirements for the final two tests. The test and trace programme is not at a state of readiness to respond to Covid-19 community setting outbreaks in a timely manner, which poses a risk to school environments. Furthermore, we are not confident that adjustments to the current measures of the lockdown policy will not risk a second peak of infections locally.

Consequently, our advice to schools is to not re-open to more pupils on June 1st, but to continue with their current support systems that are in place. The safety and wellbeing of children, their families, and school staff outweigh the benefits of opening schools of 1st June.

The key information supporting this advice is that:

The current support system in schools for children of key workers and valuable children, which is how we describe our vulnerable children, is sufficient at this time. Additionally, safeguards are in place in Lancashire to support those children who are at risk in the community, and this support will continue.

There has been no evidence of education outcomes worsening due to the effects of government lockdown policy.

It is not going to be possible to implement social distancing in early years school settings.

There is currently no evidence of widespread immunity in community settings.

There is a significant risk that should outbreaks occur in school settings, the current system will not allow for tests to be conducted in a timely manner and therefore, the virus will continue to spread.

Schools will be kept well informed on a regular basis from the Director for Public Health in Lancashire and Lancashire County Council. We will regularly review the situation and provide further advice so that schools can re-open as soon as it is safe to do so.

In this challenging time, we recommend that everyone continue to follow the government advice of staying alert by:

Staying at home as much as possible.

Working from home if you can.

Limit contact with other people.

Keep a 2m distance from other people.

Wash your hands regularly.

Dr Sakthi Karunathini

Director of Public Health and Wellbeing

Lancashire County Council

 

 

Update Families Friday 22 May

 

Dear Families,

Please find enclosed a letter from myself and our chair of governors which details our plans from the first of June.

Best wishes to you all for a happy and healthy half term.

Mrs Sarah Roach

Letter to Families 

 

Update Key Worker Families Friday 22 May

 

Dear Key Worker Families,

Thank you for your replies regarding the request of a place at school from 1st of June.

Ten families have confirmed their child’s attendance and so we can now inform you of what the school day will look like.

Although the measures are highly prescriptive we are following directions from central government and on the matters of health and safety they are non-negotiable.

Please do read the letter carefully and note any actions you need to take to prepare your child for their return to school. Your child must be officially registered on Scopay before they attend on the set days you have chosen.

Thank you for ongoing support and a very happy half term from all of the staff here at SMSA.

Mrs Roach

Back to School Letter

 

Resources Tuesday 19 May

 

Good morning everyone,

Hope you are all remaining well – let’s say some prayers that the sunshine returns soon, although I bet the plants are glad for a drink!

Here is your next instalment of CEOPs safety pack which I hope you are finding of some use with your children.

Do you give them our best and remind them that they are doing great in these unusual times.

Access your fifth #OnlineSafetyAtHome pack with new activities for parents and carers to use at home:

 

With best wishes to you all,

Mrs Sarah Roach

 

Update Friday 15 May

 

Dear Families and friends,

Please find attached a letter outlining the school’s position on re-opening for the 1st June.

It is, in some ways, the most difficult letter I have ever had to write to parents and – as you can imagine – there is no instruction booklet for such a letter!

I must also highlight to you that the contents of the letter are subject to change as information is dispersed from central government.

Further, I would welcome responses to the information enclosed and ask that you check the ‘actions’ section to ensure school is as informed as possible to aid decision making.

With the very best wishes to you all and thoughts for a peaceful weekend,

Mrs Sarah Roach

Headteacher

Letter to Families

 

Update Wednesday 13 May

 

Good morning families,

I hope you can enjoy some of the sunshine that has returned today.

Apologies if the daily emails are overwhelming but it is critical to me that I share with you the information I have to help you make informed choices about your children.

Today I am seeking clarification from you regarding a conditional re-opening of school after the half term holiday.

So that I can safely risk assess the health and safety of staff and pupils, and determine which groups of children we are able to re-admit, it is with some urgency I need to know from

critical key workers only which of you will become unable to work from home and therefore will need your child to come to school from 1st of June?

The decision to let other year groups back into school will depend entirely upon this information and therefore is crucial to our planning. I do appreciate that some of you may not know the answer to this yet, if this is the case please could you indicate that your child needing to come back to school is a possibility and will be confirmed as soon as you are able.

Government advice remains that those who can work at home, absolutely should work from home and that the safest place for your children remains at home; we would urge you to follow this advice.

I look forward to hearing from you as soon as you are able and thank you in anticipation of your support.

Many thanks,

Mrs Sarah Roach

 

Update Tuesday 12 May

 

Good afternoon everyone and I hope that you are all well,

For your convenience, I have attached the link to the latest document from the government which helps parents to understand the vision of schools re-opening nationwide.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/closure-of-educational-settings-information-for-parents-and-carers/reopening-schools-and-other-educational-settings-from-1-june

I must stress to you that this is a vision and to be able to commit to opening safely for staff and pupils is taking a huge amount of planning and consulting with staff, governors, local authority leaders and the diocese.

I will, as always, keep in regular contact with you during this period of consultation which will hopefully allow you to make informed choices around whether you will be sending your child back to school in June.

Next week, when the plan is clearer, I will be writing to you with our suggested actions – which I know is dependent upon the lockdown-easing remaining in place – and share with you the implications for you and your children.

I ask you to hold us in mind and in your prayers as this challenging time presents us with many difficulties but want you to know that the good health of the staff and pupils remains the driving force behind all decisions.

Thank you as always,

Mrs Sarah Roach

 

Resources Wednesday 6 May

 

Good morning everyone,

A warm welcome to all our September 2020 families who may be new to receiving these regular online-safety emails.

Hope you are all remaining well.

Please find below this week’s online safety resources. I hope you are finding these useful during this time.

Do please pass our best on to all the children, we are missing them terribly.

Warmest wishes,

Mrs Sarah Roach

Your next #OnlineSafetyAtHome pack is now available for you to download, containing new activities for parents and carers to use at home! Access them here: 

 

You can also access our new guidance for parents and carers designed to help manage some of the key challenges parents are telling us about in our survey.

 

Update Tuesday 28 April

 

Letter to Families

 

Resources Tuesday 21 April

 

Good morning everyone,

I hope you are keeping well and are not feeling too overwhelmed with this awful situation.

I am writing to reassure you that you are all doing a great job. In these unprecedented times there are actually no rules (other than stay at home!).

Many of you are reaching out to us and telling us that you are worried that you are not doing enough home-schooling; that you might not have the right resources or that you are you are doing things wrong. You are doing a great job just keeping your children in the house and safe – any lessons you can conquer are a bonus.

We had our first virtual staff meeting at school yesterday – it was wonderful to see all the teachers’ faces on one screen (despite the dreadful tech problems we had!) and a key item we discussed, which I would like to share with you, was about you  – our parents. Naturally, we think, talk and worry about the children but we are acutely aware of the stresses and strains this situation is having on parents and we are very mindful of the pressures placed upon all of us. To that end, we have made the decision that we will send weekly plans out to you – very much inline with the ones you received yesterday but that we won’t be guiding you to all the new national virtual learning platforms that have now been released. These platforms are there to support you, and where you feel they are helpful, then enjoy them and let the children enjoy them too. However, there is almost too much to choose from now and selecting the appropriate materials for your child is a minefield.

If you had to select a key activity to do regularly I would urge you to choose reading followed by a conversation about the book. Using five or six question words ask your children about the main characters, their intentions, to predict what might happen, to understand what did happen, new facts they have learned etc The question hand included here will guide you.

Thank you for what you are doing – this won’t last forever and we will all be together again soon, please God.

Included for you here:

Reminders of keeping safe online for parents and children (this may be helpful when choosing different learning platforms or when the children are operating independently online).

For Early Years and Primary:

Click here for home actvity packs for children aged 4-5

Click here for home activity packs for children aged 5-7

Click here for home activity packs for children aged 8-10

For Secondary:

Click here for home activity packs for children aged 11-13

Click here for home activity packs for children aged 14+

Two new Parent Info articles look at some of the things parents and carers should think about to make sure their child’s experience of video chat is safe and fun:

 

Take good care of yourselves and each other,

Kindest regards,

Mrs Sarah Roach
Head Teacher

 

Resources Thursday 9 May

 

Good morning everyone,

Hope you are all ok and keeping well.

As we are all doing so much more work online these days, please may I draw your attention to these materials which aim to support the safe use of the internet for all ages:

 

Think You Know

 

Very best wishes to you all on this very different Maundy Thursday.

Mrs Sarah Roach

Update Friday 20 March

 

School will be closed from Friday 20th March.

On Monday 23rd March school will only be operating for pupils whose parents work is critical to the COVID-19 response.

Many parents working in these sectors may be able to ensure their child is kept at home.

And every child who can be safely cared for at home should be.

If your work is critical to the COVID-19 response, or you work in one of the critical sectors listed here, and you cannot keep your child safe at home, then your children will be prioritised for education provision and you must contact us by email at staff@st-mary-st-andrews.lancs.sch.uk as soon as possible.

We can only provide childcare on your working days therefore if you are part-time, on the days you are not at work, your child must remain at home with you. For families who do not meet the above criteria, we will continue to send home learning experiences for your children via email, purple mash, the website and twitter. If you have any limitations in reaching the internet please do let us know as soon as possible.

During this period, for children who are attending school, we are not required to follow the national curriculum to educate your children but will be ensuring they receive good quality childcare which will feature a combination of recreational activities and learning opportunities. What I can assure you is that your children, when with us in school, will be loved and cared for.

Our Breakfast and After School Club in currently unavailable but School is open from 8.30am until 3.30pm, we are happy to stay until 4pm to allow keyworkers to travel to school after a 3.30pm finish. Childcare will continue to be available over the Easter Holidays if needed (but not on Good Friday or Easter Monday).

We ask that during this time, you regularly keep in touch with us and continue to follow Public Health’s recommendations. If a member of your family becomes unwell then all members of the household must self-isolate and inform school as soon as possible.

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