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Firstly, again, I would like to thank you for your support during this challenging period.

We are now moving into a different stage of the School’s response, as we move beyond the issue of students returning from a Category 2 area, to seeking to limit the spread of the virus within our community.

Staff and students who visited Northern Italy, which was designated a Category 2 specified area

We followed the Government guidance in respect of these members of staff and students.  Those who showed no symptoms remained in School; those who showed any symptoms, however mild, were asked to self-isolate at home.  Over 20 of the staff and students were tested for the COVID-19 virus, all the tests were negative.

All staff and students from the ski trip returned to school on Monday, with the exception of one who has not yet received his test results back.  He will return as soon as he receives a negative test.

Preventing the spread of the virus

We are taking the following actions to prevent the spread of the virus:

  • Washing and/ or sanitising of hands – we have systems in place to ensure that students wash or sanitise their hands upon entering the school, after using the toilet, prior to eating and after PE lessons.

We would ask for your support to ensure that the pupils wash their hands before leaving for school each morning and upon their return in the evening.

  • Preventing infection from the touching of objects – we are insisting that the students do not share standard equipment such as pens and pencils.  Where students have to use specialist items, such as computer keyboards, art and technology materials we have provided sanitising gel and wipes.
  • The need to avoid touching mouths, eyes and faces – students are receiving messages and are being challenged in respect of these actions.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects – the School has been deep cleaned once and we have engaged with our cleaning contractors to ensure that all surfaces are cleaned and disinfected daily.
  • Staff and students to be at home if they have flu/ cold like symptoms – we ask for your support in respect of this.  Any student displaying any cold or flu like symptoms will be sent home from school to recover.
  • Coughs and sneezes to be caught in a tissue which is disposed of immediately - students have been messaged and challenged in respect of this.
  • Avoiding, where possible, ‘close contact’ with students and colleagues – this is obviously very difficult in an educational setting, however, we have reviewed our routines to limit ‘close contact’.

Dealing with a potential positive case or a confirmed positive case

We will be advised by Public Health England of our approach – it is likely to involve all students who have been in ‘close contact’ with the positive case self-isolating.  The expectation at the moment is that school would remain open.

If a student has come into contact with a person infected with COVID-19, please call NHS 111 to seek their advice and self-isolate. Parents should also inform the School.

Plans for reduced staffing levels and a period of closure for the School

If we had significantly reduced staffing we would revert to a timetable with larger class sizes for Years 7 to 10.  In addition, we would go to tutor groups of 30 students.

We have a system in place of remote learning for students who are off school.

Public exams

It is very much our expectation that these will go ahead as expected.  All students must be preparing in this expectation.

 

Jamie Brownhill

Headteacher

 

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