The government are of the opinion that, whilst it is not possible to ensure a totally risk-free environment, the balance of risk is now overwhelmingly in favour of children returning to school. They argue that for the vast majority of children, the benefits of being back in school far outweigh the very low risk from coronavirus (COVID-19). As a result, all schools are preparing to welcome all children back next week, including Borrowdale School.
While coronavirus (COVID-19) remains in the community, this means making judgments at school level about how to balance delivering a broad and balanced curriculum with the measures needed to manage risk. This means revisiting the risk assessments and responding to identified risks in a way that suits the circumstances, are practical to be implemented and are maintained easily over time. We hope that you will find the information below about how we plan to operate useful, but as always, don't hesitate to ask any questions that you may still have after reading this page.
If you are unwell or have one or more coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms (or you have someone in you household who does), you cannot attend school.
What happens when my child is ill, but is not showing symptoms of COVID-19?
What happens when someone is showing one or more symptoms of COVID-19?
What happens if the test result comes back positive?
What happens if the test result comes back negative?
Upon arrival at school, we are planning to check your child’s temperature using an infrared no-touch thermometer.
Cleaning hands more often
Children will be asked to clean their hands regularly, including when they arrive at school, when they return from breaks, when the visit the toilet and before and after eating.
Respiratory hygiene / face coverings
Enhanced Cleaning / Toilets
Grouping children / Bubbles
Consistent groups reduces the risk of transmission by limiting the number of pupils and staff in contact with each other to only those withing the group. However, in the Summer term we learned that maintaining distinct groups (or ‘bubbles’) that do not mix presented many educational and logistical challenges in our small school, including cleaning, use of shared spaces such as the playground, transport, etc.
Because our school is not much bigger than a large class, the logistics of keeping siblings and staff in separate areas at all times are simply not practical. But the approaches of separating groups and maintaining distance are not ‘all-or-nothing’ options, and will still bring benefits if implemented partially.
Therefore, we will keep children and staff in their class groups for the majority of time, but we will also allow mixing into wider groups, transport or after school clubs and staff are able to move between groups. Because we will keep the class groups at least partially separate and minimise close contacts between children of different classes, we will still reduce the network of possible direct transmission.
Travel to and from school on the minibus
It is our intention to get the school minibus running again as soon as we can. We hope that this can be achieved after a couple of weeks. Before we are able to we will need to consider:
School attendance is mandatory again. This means that usual rules on school attendance apply and we expect all children to attend school unless
We will continue to provide meals to all pupils who want it including those eligible for benefit related free school meals or universal free school meals. We will be offering lunches that are balanced and healthy, prepared at Keswick School. They will be pre-packed, cold lunches, so children can eat them in their classrooms, therefore minimising the mixing of groups. the initial menu for the Autumn term can be found on the school website on the 'Meals' page.
Some pupils may choose to bring in a packed lunch from home. Lunches brought in from home should also be healthy and nutritious. Sweets and sugary drinks are not allowed in school.
All pupils should have their own water bottle which they can re-fill at school. We encourage pupils to bring in a healthy snack for the morning break.
School uniform / School bag
The school relaxed the uniform policy in the summer term because there was a requirement of wearing a set of clean clothes every day. New guidance tells us uniforms do not need to be cleaned more often than usual, nor do they need to be cleaned using methods which are different from normal. We will therefore revert to the usual uniform policy as we believe it sets an appropriate tone.
Pupils may bring in a bag for their belongings such as their lunch box, water bottle and reading books. Stationary will be provided to them by the school and should not be brought in. Toys should also stay at home.
Most pupils keep a bag in school with their PE kit or a change of clothes. We still encourage this, so pupils always have the right equipment. PE is an important subject and without an appropriate PE kit and trainers, pupils may be cold or trip over whilst running.
Clubs have not been ruled out because of COVID-19, but we will initially only have running club for pupils in Years 4,5,6 who are interested. We are planning to do this on Thursdays.
Where a class or small number of pupils need to self-isolate, or there is a local lockdown requiring pupils to stay at home, we will offer immediate remote education. Our curriculum for the Autumn term will be planned in a way that supports a switch to remote learning should the need arise.
Catch up support
At the start of the term, the teachers will assess the pupils to identify gaps and re-establish good progress in the essentials (phonics and reading, increasing vocabulary, writing and mathematics). If gaps are identified, pupils may receive some intervention support to help them. This could be in the form of alternative or additional work in school as well as tasks to do at home (e.g. reading time).