Parental Update – 28th November 2021
Dear Parents and Carers
With just three weeks to go to the Christmas holidays, I thought it was important to bring some information to your attention.
I would like to begin by thanking those students who were vaccinated last week for the very mature way they behaved. The vaccination team commented on their excellent behaviour, which is always very pleasing to hear.
You will also be aware that the Prime Minister announced increased precautions due to the new Omicron variant that has recently been discovered. This means that face coverings in shops and on public transport will be compulsory. This means all students will need to wear face coverings if going through the Kingfisher Centre or travelling by bus. This evening, Sunday 28th November, schools have been sent updated guidance from the DfE.
Face coverings should be worn in communal areas in all settings by staff, visitors and pupils or students in year 7 and above, unless they are exempt.
Pupils or students (in year 7 or above) should continue to wear face coverings on public and dedicated school transport, unless they are exempt.
Students will therefore be required to wear a face covering when moving around the school, unless they are exempt for medical reasons. Unfortunately, we have experienced far fewer students bringing face covering to school recently. Last week we supplied over 700 masks to students at a cost of £100. This is not sustainable given the pressure on school budgets so I would I ask that ALL students bring a face covering to school every day.
We were also informed on Friday afternoon that schools will be asked to test students on their return from the school Christmas holiday. At this stage we have not been given any further guidance on how this will work, but please be assured that I will update you as soon as I have further information on this.
All students should be continuing to do LFD tests (home tests) at least twice a week. If any student has a positive LTD test result, please advise the school and book a PCR test. Your child needs to isolate and not come to school until you have the PCR result. You can advise school by MCAS, telephone or by advising Mrs Green on firstname.lastname@example.org
We have seen a recent increase in cases in school, so it is really important that testing is carried out regularly to help protect the whole school and wider community.
On more positive news, we are holding a Christmas Concert on Wednesday 8th December. I am delighted that we are able to do this ‘in person’ and I look forward to seeing some of you there. The last time we were able to celebrate together was in 2019 and I think it is really important that we are able, despite our concerns around covid, to give the students opportunities to celebrate together. Details about how to book tickets, and our covid protocols, have been sent out separately.
End of Term Arrangements
On the last day of term, Friday 17th December, we will be asking staff and students to pay £1 to wear a Christmas jumper. This will help the school support our local charities, in particular St Basil’s and our local food bank. We will also be finishing at lunchtime and arrangements for this will be sent our nearer the time.
I wrote to you earlier in the term to ask you to let us know immediately if a member of your family contracts chicken pox or measles. It is really important that this continues to happen as we do have a student who is undergoing chemotherapy, and we need to ensure they are protected from these diseases while his immune system is under such strain.
I have also been asked to draw to your attention that we do have some children at the school who have Tourette’s syndrome. This means that they will, at times, make involuntary sounds or movements (known as tics). This can be distressing for both the students concerned and for those around them but the school is supporting those affected.
Thank you for your ongoing support.