Re-opening of the school
A message from the Director of Public Health and the Director of Children and Family Services - Tuesday 15th September 2020:
As infection rates continue to rise across the county, the Director of Public Health and the Director of Children and Family Services request that face coverings are worn by parents and carers at school pick up and drop off in Leicestershire.
Cases are rising nationally, but there are particular areas of concern in the county, and public health officials are advising residents to be vigilant in all day to day activities. It has been difficult for some parents to maintain social distancing at school gates, and this further measure will help prevent the spread of coronavirus. The advice remains the same: keeping your distance, getting a test only if you have covid symptoms, washing your hands and wearing a face covering where required. Parents and carers are asked to do everything they can to protect their families and friends.
Information for Parents
Following the government’s announcement that schools are to re-open fully after the summer holiday we are really pleased to be able to share our plans with you. These plans are based on the guidance which we have at the moment but, as there are still six weeks (at the time of writing) until we return, things may change - so please keep checking this page! Parents will also appreciate that, as Leicestershire schools break up for the summer sooner than the rest of the country, we have not had as long as other areas to draft our plans so they are most likely to be tweaked as we near the start of the autumn term.
We are following the guidance which has been issued by the Department for Education to make the school as safe as possible for both children and staff.
Information for parents from the DfE is also available here.
How to prepare your child
We hope that your child will be excited to come back to school but please talk with them about the fact that some things might be a little bit different.
The classrooms will be set out differently, to allow for some social distancing as possible. Older children will sit at tables all facing the front of the class rather than in groups.
It might be useful for you to go through some of the information on this page with your child.
If you are concerned about how your child might manage a return to school after all these weeks, take a look at this 'Back to Calm' pack for parents.
What will school be like?
All children will stay within a “bubble”. We are introducing year group bubbles, which means that children within each year group will be able to arrive at school at the same time, have the same playtimes and lunchtimes, and leave school at the same time. During the day, though, they will still work in their own classrooms.
There will be no mixing of bubbles so, for example, we will not have large numbers of children playing together across year groups at playtime or lunchtime, nor will we be holding assemblies for the time being.
From the start of the autumn term, attendance at school will once again become compulsory, unlike during the partial re-opening in June and July. Attendance registers will be taken and non-attendance will be followed up in the usual manner.
It is very clear from all the guidance from the Department for Education that social distancing between children in a primary school is not possible; indeed the guidance now states that distancing for young children is not required. It is important to protect staff too and I would ask all parents to talk with their children before returning to school about social distancing and that they must give their teacher space and not try to touch or hug him/her.
On arriving at school the first task will be to wash hands. Children will be directed to wash their hands regularly throughout the day, particularly at times when they might have moved from one part of the site to another, for example for breaktimes or lunchtimes.
The staff will ensure that equipment, door handles, computer keyboards, light switches etc are wiped down with a sanitizing spray during the day; all rooms will be cleaned thoroughly in the evening.
We will expect children to wear uniform, unlike during the partial re-opening of the school during June and July. We would appreciate your support, though, in making sure that children come into school in clothes which are clean. Uniform does not need to be washed every single day but a good level of hygiene is expected.
PE kit will also be required as we will be planning a lot of physical activities, knowing that during lockdown many children will have had limited opportunities for this.
We will be offering school dinners to children in Foundation Stage, Year 1 and Year 2 as these children are all entitled to a Universal Infant Meal. These children will be eating in the dining hall in three 'sittings', with the area cleaned in between each sitting.
For children in Key Stage 2 (Years 3, 4, 5 and 6) we are asking parents to provide a packed lunch each day. These children will eat outside if the weather permits. At other times they will eat in the hall. Children in these year groups who are entitled to Free School Meals will be provided with a packed lunch.
The reason for doing things this way is simply down to numbers; to provide school dinners to all year groups would require seven sittings and take three and a half hours.
Bags and equipment
Children may bring a bag to school if they need to but realistically they do not need to bring anything with them other than their PE kit, packed lunch and drinks. The fewer things which are brought in and out the school the better. All equipment needed in the classroom will be provided so there is no need for pens / pencils / pencil cases etc. If it is going to be a warm day please consider whether your child even needs to bring a coat.
Before and After School Childcare
We will be offering before and after school childcare when school re-opens. Many parents have already booked places for their children. If you have not yet done so, please contact the school office as soon as possible so that we can plan for expected numbers.
Start of the School Day
Unfortunately the new gate which we had hoped to have installed over the summer has not yet been completed so we have had to update our plans for the start and end of the day. Please be aware of the new routines.
All year groups will enter the site through the car park exit gate on the junction of Greenhill Road and Broom Leys Road. Please note that any vehicles which enter the school site between 8.30 a.m. and 9.00 a.m. and then between 3.00 p.m. and 3.20 p.m. will not be able to exit whilst children and parents are using the driveway.
There will be a staggered start to the school day in order to avoid congestion around the site:
Year 6: 8.40 a.m.
Years 3: 8.45 a.m.
Year 5: 8.50 a.m.
Years 2 and 4: 8.55 a.m.
Foundation Stage and Year 1: 9.00 a.m.
There will be three drop off points along the route. The first point will be for Years 4, 5 and 6. The second point will be for Years 2 and 3. The third point will be for EYFS and Year 1.
Please arrive at your allotted time - not early and not late!
If you have children in more than one year group, please drop ALL children off at whichever is the EARLIER time. There will be members of staff from all year groups on the playground from the outset to welcome you.
Please note that the side entrance gate (to Balmoral Road) will NOT be unlocked either in the morning or the afternoon.
If you bring your child to school, only one parent needs to do so.
Please socially distance both outside and inside the school grounds if you are waiting at any point.
When inside the playground, please send your child to one of the adults who will be there to greet you. There will not be an opportunity to stop and talk, unfortunately.
Similar rules will apply at the end of the day. We will have the children ready for you to collect and they will be sent over to you when they can see you.
End of the school day
As with the morning routine, please arrive on time to collect your child and queue patiently, maintain social distancing.
Foundation Stage, Year 1 and Year 2 will finish at 3.00 p.m.
Years 3 and 4 will finish at 3.10 p.m.
Years 5 and 6 will finish at 3.20 p.m.
Please follow the same routine as in the morning to collect your child, entering the site through the car park exit gate and leaving the site through the playground gate on to Greenhill Road; we will have the children ready for collection at the allotted times.
If you have children in more than one year group, please collect ALL children off at whichever is the LATER time. There will be members of staff from all year groups on the playground to hand your children over to you.
The staff at Broom Leys have been working hard to make sure that the school is as safe as possible for your child. Please help us to ensure their safety at the start and end of the day. Thank you.
We will be delivering our full curriculum although there will be a greater emphasis on the basic skills in the core subjects of English and Mathematics, for obvious reasons. We know that most parents have worked tirelessly during lockdown to continue providing an education for their children and we would like to thank you for all your efforts - they are GREATLY APPRECIATED!
Teachers will be checking children's understanding from the outset and working hard to overcome any gaps in knowledge which might have developed during the time of the lockdown so that we can make sure that children are on track to achieve well.
Contacting the School
If you need to contact the school when we re-open, you will not be able to come to the school office as this will be closed to visitors. Please telephone the school if you would like to speak with someone or, if it is a query which a teacher can answer, please use the contact facility on the website.
Health advice / expectations
If your child has coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms, or someone in your household does, then your child must not attend school.
The medical advice is clear: you must self-isolate if you have coronavirus symptoms or live in the same household as somebody who does. The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
• high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
• new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
• loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
For more information, read the further guidance on symptoms.
If you or your child has one or more of these symptoms, you must self-isolate straight away for 10 days – or longer if you still have symptoms other than cough or loss of sense of smell/taste. If you live in the same household as someone with coronavirus symptoms, you must self-isolate straight away for 14 days.
You need to get a test for coronavirus.
Only the person who has developed one or more of the main coronavirus symptoms described above should be tested. There is no need for the whole households to have a test, unless they are also symptomatic.
How to order a test
The sooner you have a test, the sooner you can be told if you and other members of your household must remain in self-isolation. Members of the public can order a test through the NHS website.
When you order a test, you will get information on the options available to you. The NHS currently aims to provide results within 48 hours of taking a test, but some results may take longer. You will get your results by text, email or phone – and the message will advise you about what to do next.
If you test negative this means you are at low risk of having coronavirus. Other members of your household can stop self-isolating. If you feel well and no longer have symptoms similar to coronavirus, you can stop self-isolating. You 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 you are better.
If you test positive this means that when you took the test, you had coronavirus. You, and other members of your household, must continue to self-isolate.
If your child becomes unwell whilst in school with a new, continuous cough or a high temperature, or a loss of, or change in, their normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia), they will be isolated and you will be called to collect them immediately.
You will be advised to follow ‘stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infection’, which sets out that your child must self-isolate for at least 7 days and should arrange to have a test to see if they have coronavirus (COVID-19).
Other members of your household (including any siblings) must then self-isolate for 14 days from when your child first had symptoms.
If you order a home testing kit, there is a very useful, short video for parents which will help you prepare to administer the test to your child.
Thank you for your continued support of the school; it is greatly appreciated!