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School closure from Friday 20th March

Wednesday 18th March 2020

 

RE: School Closure

 

Dear Parents/Carers,

 

As I am sure you are all aware, this evening, the Government has instructed all schools to close to most pupils this week. This means we will sadly have to close school at 3.30pm on Friday 20th March. I must stress that it is highly likely that this closure will be for a long period of time. We are sorry that this is the case, but now is the time to put in place the procedures we have been planning.

 

Thankfully, the school will be open to the children of those who are identified as a key worker during this pandemic. The cabinet office will be issuing further guidance as to who these workers are tomorrow and I will update you as soon as I know the full details. We shall also remain open for children who have an allocated social worker or an Educational Health Care Plan (EHCP). Again I will clarify this tomorrow with the parents that this concerns.

 

We are keen to ensure as little disruption as possible to learning for all pupils, especially for those who are at home. Health permitting, all staff will continue to work with children who are at home by setting learning tasks on class teams and with work packs.

 

Should you need to, you are able to contact staff via the school office email address which is office@wmg.snmat.org.uk Your email will be immediately forwarded to them so they can respond. Staff will not be able to respond to emails that do not come directly through the school office email account.

 

We plan to staff the office between 8.30am and 3.45pm each day and welcome phone calls and emails in particular. Breakfast provision will be available for the children of Keyworkers. Please let me know if this applies to your child so that we can staff the provision accordingly.

 

We would appreciate it greatly if you could avoid coming to school to ask questions if your child is not at school, as this will increase the risk of spreading the coronavirus further.

 

Children Eligible for Free School Meals

The local authority is yet to announce what arrangements are to be put in place for the provision of food for children eligible for free school meals (whether they are at home or at school), but we hope to be able to share more information on this in the next 24 hours. We are, of course, making plans to ensure this is in place as soon as possible.

 

What to do if you are concerned about something

 

If your child is not one of those in school and there is anything at all that you think we can help you with, please contact the school office who will forward your email to whoever you wish it to go to. We will aim to respond as soon as possible.

 

Tasks and activities for pupils

 

We would like to ask parents and carers to support their children in doing the following tasks for the duration of the closure:

 

  1. Read a book of your choice for at least 15 minutes each day and keep a diary of what has been read.
  2. All children in Year 1 and upwards have been given a login to ‘TTRockstars’. This is a personalised online system of learning for maths that we have chosen to use with pupils both in school and at home. Many children are also able to use ‘Nessy’ a spelling and reading programme.
  3. For all classes other work/activities/tasks will be set using Outlook Teams as shared in the ‘Working from Home’ document. This can be found on the school website and was shared by ParentMail a few days ago. Teachers will respond to the work set by pupils and give them feedback and further learning tasks.
  4. Work packs were sent home yesterday in readiness for this eventuality. Children can do a little of these each day. Please talk with your child about what they are learning.
  5. Extra tasks and activity ideas will also be put on Facebook and the website. This will continue to be populated so please keep checking what is on there.

 

N.B We know that the internet can be inaccessible at times for many people, so we are trying to find alternative ways of working for those who need it.

 

 

If your child was not in school today, you are welcome to come to the school office tomorrow to pick up your child’s resources or arrange for someone else to pick them up on your behalf if you are self-isolating.

 

Children who complete all of the set tasks will be rewarded on their return to school.

 

Just because the school will be closed to many children, it doesn’t mean we are no longer there to help and support. We are more than aware that this is a very worrying time and that financial difficulties will affect many of our families. Please ask if you think we can help.

We hope that you are able to keep safe and look forward to the day when the school is once again able to open to all pupils.

 

With sincere best wishes,

 

Sarah Clarke and the staff team at William Gladstone CofE Primary Academy

 

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