Dear Parents and Carers,
As you will know from my letter yesterday, schools are being asked to continue to provide care for a limited number of children – children with an EHCP, children who are vulnerable and children whose parents are critical to the Covid-19 response and cannot be safely cared for at home.
This morning the Government released the full guidance in the link below.
The content within the document states:
• If it is at all possible for children to be at home, then they should be (as a school we urge you consider all the options available to you).
• If a child needs specialist support, is vulnerable or has a parent who is a critical worker, then educational provision will be available for them.
• Parents should not rely for childcare upon those who are advised to be in the stringent social distancing category such as grandparents, friends, or family members with underlying conditions.
• Parents should also do everything they can to ensure children are not mixing socially in a way which can continue to spread the virus. They should observe the same social distancing principles as adults.
The Local Authority have this morning also sent out the following advice for us to pass on to parents in relation to key workers:
Please note that the decision to close schools to the majority of pupils was made to limit the chance of the virus spreading and therefore the Government are asking parents to keep their children at home wherever possible and to ensure that they are not mixing socially in a way which can continue to spread the virus; especially to those in the vulnerable groups due to their age or underlying health conditions.
If you fall within the critical categories please confirm with your employer that based on their business continuity arrangements your role is critical to the COVID-19 response. If you cannot keep your child safe at home, we will prioritise them for education provision for the hours during the school day that you are required to work.
Having read the above, if you still feel you are unable to keep your child safe at home and are in need of care, please could you let the school know which days you require so that we can plan staff cover. We will open when needed, however you do need to notify us as soon as possible.
This MUST be done in advance so that we have the right ratio of staff in place. You cannot just turn up at school without being on our list as in order to protect staff we will be working from home when we can.
For children coming in to school as of Monday 23rd March 2020, the following measures/precautions must be taken:
Children need to wear uniform. We recommend changing into home clothes once returning from school to minimise and control the spread of infection.
We must register your child in and out of the premises by somebody who either has parental responsibility or has been nominated by yourselves, as long as you are all fit and well and not showing symptoms of coronavirus.
If you become unwell with coronavirus symptoms, you must immediately contact school and arrange for collection of your child.
Please let us know in the normal manner if your child will be absent and we are expecting them.
Social distancing must be enforced whilst your child is not in school if we are to prevent/minimise the spread of infection.
School must be informed if you no longer fall within the critical worker list or you have been asked to self-isolate.
Thorough hand washing to take place just before leaving your home.
Children must be dropped off at school at 8.50 am and picked up at 3.15 pm
Children will be able to order a packed lunch daily, this will replace hot school meals. Children will be given a choice of a cheese, ham, egg or tuna baguette plus accompaniments. If this changes due to catering difficulties we will let you know. These meals will be paid for in the usual manner.
Children will not have taught lessons whilst in school during this time but will be able to complete the daily tasks as set for their peers.
A list of Key Workers provided by the Government and Local Authority below.
Thank you for your continued support for our school community as we seek to help you and your family during these challenging times.
Eastcombe Primary School
KEY WORKER CRITICAL CATEGORIES
Health and social care
This includes but is not limited to doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, social workers, care workers, and other frontline health and social care staff including volunteers; the support and specialist staff required to maintain the UK’s health and social care sector; those working as part of the health and social care supply chain, including producers and distributers of medicines and medical and personal protective equipment.
Education and childcare
This includes nursery and teaching staff, social workers and those specialist education professionals who must remain active during the COVID-19 response to deliver this approach.
Key public services
This includes those essential to the running of the justice system, religious staff, charities and workers delivering key frontline services, those responsible for the management of the deceased, and journalists and broadcasters who are providing public service broadcasting.
Local and national government
This only includes those administrative occupations essential to the effective delivery of the COVID-19 response or delivering essential public services such as the payment of benefits, including in government agencies and arms length bodies.
Food and other necessary goods
This includes those involved in food production, processing, distribution, sale and delivery as well as those essential to the provision of other key goods (for example hygienic and veterinary medicines).
Public safety and national security
This includes police and support staff, Ministry of Defence civilians, contractor and armed forces personnel (those critical to the delivery of key defence and national security outputs and essential to the response to the COVID-19 pandemic), fire and rescue service employees (including support staff), National Crime Agency staff, those maintaining border security, prison and probation staff and other national security roles, including those overseas.
This includes those who will keep the air, water, road and rail passenger and freight transport modes operating during the COVID-19 response, including those working on transport systems through which supply chains pass.
Utilities, communication and financial services
This includes staff needed for essential financial services provision (including but not limited to workers in banks, building societies and financial market infrastructure), the oil, gas, electricity and water sectors (including sewerage), information technology and data infrastructure sector and primary industry supplies to continue during the COVID-19 response, as well as key staff working in the civil nuclear, chemicals, telecommunications (including but not limited to network operations, field engineering, call centre staff, IT and data infrastructure, 999 and 111 critical services), postal services and delivery, payments providers and waste disposal sectors.