We have just received this statement from Warrington BC:
The council, in close partnership with its school leaders, has today (Sunday) agreed to defer primary schools extending their opening to more pupils by one week, until Monday 15 June.
Despite tireless work between the council and schools in the borough to prepare to welcome primary schoolchildren back to educational settings for Monday 8 June, a joint decision has this afternoon confirmed that arrangements will be put back by one week, to allow more time to consider the safe return of pupils.
This decision does not affect secondary schools, who are already planning wider reopening from Monday 15 June.
Cllr Matt Smith, Cabinet member for children’s services, said: “This isn’t a decision we’ve taken lightly, but it is a decision which balances the scientific evidence and advice with our own prudence and caution. Our decision to delay the wider reopening of our schools by a week also follows the regional consensus, with similar decisions being made by other councils and schools in the North West.
“Our schools have made excellent preparations and, following their own comprehensive risk assessments, will be equipped to open their doors, safely, to more pupils when the time comes. I can say that with absolute confidence, particularly given our schools have remained open for some of our most vulnerable children, and children of key workers.
“Our decision has been a difficult one to come to, especially given we want to see more children in schools. But, ultimately, we have agreed that the decision to delay the expansion of our primary school offer by a week, to the 15th, is the correct one – in line with our evidence-led, safety-first approach.
“We have had to carefully consider many different factors to come to our joint decision to delay, including the most recent information from Public Health England. This one week delay will provide us with a further opportunity to review recent scientific information, its impact, and implications locally.
“We will now be notifying head teachers of all affected primary schools and will continue to work with them on their arrangements and plans for expansion, in a week’s time. We will also reconvene on Wednesday this week to review our joint position and make a further assessment.”
We hope that you are all safe and well and are starting to get into some form of routine. We would like to thank all of those parents who are classed as ‘Critical Workers’ who have been able to arrange alternative child care rather than using school. The staff at school will be here to support you all throughout this time, but it is also reassuring that you are also thinking of our well being by not sending children into school unless you really need to.
We will continue to work on developing the learning opportunities at home and will keep in touch with you on a regular basis too – either through emails, class newsletters or the odd phone call. Please continue to check the class web-pages on a regular basis and if you need to email your child’s class teacher then, you can use the address they have sent on their first newsletter to you all.
This may be a good time to learn something new yourselves, perhaps something that may help your child too. As you know, we teach Spanish in school and the Duolingo App is very good and free. Maybe you could look into learning an instrument or spend some time getting your head around Google Apps – there are loads of tutorials online to help with this. All the juniors have logins for the school Google account and they are more than welcome to have a go at using the docs, sheets, slides or sites apps. These can be shared with staff for them to see what the children have been doing.
We sincerely hope that it won’t be too long before we see all of the children again, especially our Year 6 class, who may be feeling very confused at the moment.
Finally we would like to direct you to the 5 Ways to Wellbeing website which may be a useful resources over the next few week.
We wish everyone the best over the next few weeks and thank you all for your continued support.
The Bradshaw Team
I would like to begin by saying thank you to all of you who completed the form on Friday to help us work out the numbers we are due to expect in school tomorrow morning. This has meant we can plan for the number of staff needed (as we want to make sure we try and protect them too) and start to organise the logistics of where the children will be and for school meals etc. As with all things at the moment, these plans could change at any moment.
We did want to further emphasise some additional points. Following on from information passed on by Gavin Williamson, the Education Secretary,:
‘You should only send your child to school on Monday if you have to, because your work is critical to our COVID-19 response.
If you are able to keep your child at home, you should.’
Therefore please only send your child into school if there is no alternative available. The reason schools are closing is to avoid as much social contact as possible and the fewer number of children in school; the lesser the risk to all families. We are sure that all families at Bradshaw will follow this guidance during these worrying and stressful times.
If you have been offered a place for your child but now believe you are more able to keep your child at home, please call school to let us know this change.
Whilst the children are at school, we will be discussing the social distancing guides, but as you can imagine, this will be impossible to enforce in a primary school environment with our currently expected numbers. Also we will continue to adhere to a strict hand washing regime and ask that those parents dropping off and picking up also try to keep 2m away from staff.
All the children at school will be carrying out the same work activities as those sent home to the rest of the children.
Remember that if your child is due to come into school and they show any symptoms of the virus (continuous cough and or signs of a high temp) please keep them home and let school know.
Again, please stay at home for as much of the time as possible and together we will ‘get through this’.
Thank you for your continued support .
The Bradshaw Team
The DfE have release the information on who constitutes key workers:
As a country, we all need to do what we can to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
And the most recent scientific advice on how to further limit the spread of COVID-19 is clear. If children can stay safely at home, they should, to limit the chance of the virus spreading.
That is why the government has asked parents to keep their children at home, wherever possible, and asked schools to remain open only for those children who absolutely need to attend.
It is important to underline that schools, colleges and other educational establishments remain safe places for children. But the fewer children making the journey to school, and the fewer children in educational settings, the lower the risk that the virus can spread and infect vulnerable individuals in wider society.
Parents whose work is critical to the COVID-19 response include those who work in health and social care and in other key sectors outlined below. Many parents working in these sectors may be able to ensure their child is kept at home. And every child who can be safely cared for at home should be.
Please, therefore, follow these key principles:
- If it is at all possible for children to be at home, then they should be.
- 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.
- Residential special schools, boarding schools and special settings continue to care for children wherever possible.
If your work is critical to the COVID-19 response, or you work in one of the critical sectors listed below, and you cannot keep your child safe at home then your children will be prioritised for education provision:
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.
If workers think they fall within the critical categories above they should confirm with their employer that, based on their business continuity arrangements, their specific role is necessary for the continuation of this essential public service.
The reason schools are closing because of social distancing and we will continue to provide childcare – not education provision – of key workers. For the continued safety of the children and staff we ask that you consider carefully whether your child has to come into school at all. The provision we can offer will only be available if we have enough healthy staff and the better the social distancing the more effective the policy will be.
The children in school will carry out the same tasks as those sent home to children who are not in school. This child-care will be for when nobody else is at home to look after the children. If the other carer is able to work from home then we would expect that the children stay with them. If both parents are key workers and work patterns are different we would also expect the children to be at home whenever possible. Also, we have only been asked to provide cover for the normal school hours of 8:45am – 3:15pm.
Please complete this form if you believe you are a key worker and you cannot keep your child off school. https://forms.gle/bR28wAQ6KuT9bnpU9
We still have not received confirmation of which jobs are classed as ‘Key Workers’ so are unable to confirm which children will be able to come into school on Monday 23rd.
Also, our ParentMail system is also ‘down’ at the moment so we are unable to contact you through that system. We hope this will be up and running in the morning, when we will update you again.