This week’s Blog is even later than last week as I was hoping for further clarity and detail!! Apologies but there is really no more than yesterday’s email! However, you will also have the pleasure of reading our governor's Blog - so something new! (See below.)
I would like to thank everybody for their patience over the last week whilst we continue to develop the school plans for a potential, partial reopening. The school plan is being developed following the strict health and safety guidance from all parties. The risk assessment is currently in the process of completion, with information we have available and that changes consistently. I want to ensure that appropriate steps are put in place to prioritise the protection of children and staff. Our highest priority is that the school community is safe but we recognise, like the government, that social distancing in primary schools is a virtually impossible! Whilst we would love to welcome every child back to school, this just is not possible at this time. As you can imagine there is much guidance and documentation coming in from the government, WeST and Devon, as well as the unions. On 28th May, the government are to make further announcements including a further education update. Therefore there will be further updates during week commencing 1st June 2020.
Phase 1 draft proposal:
It is hoped that the partial reopening for WeST primary schools will take place on Monday 8th June for Year 1 and Year 6 pupils only. (However this is looking more like the 15th.) Initials plans will be that each of the year groups will be split into 2 groups to accommodate maximum numbers permitted. These are ‘bubble’ groups. Each bubble group will be in school for 2 days and have 3 days of home learning. All other year groups will continue to have 5 days of home learning, with Educare continuing in school all week, at Wembury, if we re-open. It is important to say that the school will not be as pupils and parents knew it. The new ‘norm’ is likely to have very restricted curriculum activities. Expectations of children and behaviour will also be very different.
This situation continues to change and we will keep you updated with further information as we receive it. Thank you for your continued support and we will confirm the plan once the government have released further information.
As we are now at half term, I wanted to take this opportunity to really acknowledge and praise the children (and their parents!) for all of their hard work and resilience over the last few weeks, as well as patience and thoughtfulness. It has been an incredibly strange time for us all and I know we are all hoping for some sort of normality to resume soon. I also need to thank all the incredible staff and governance team we have at Wembury. Their dedication to supporting families through home learning, phone calls, messages, emails, videos and attendance at Educare has been exceptional. Their caring and supporting nature continues - the team are really amazing!
I hope you have a lovely half term and the sun continues to shine for us all.
Dear Parents and Carers
I am sure we are all looking forward to a safe reopening of the school as soon as that is possible and practicable. On Thursday of last week I attended a virtual WeST Trust Board meeting at which the CEO was questioned about the partial reopening of WeST schools. I must say that I was impressed by what I heard and the discussion. There has been a huge amount of work put into examining all the implications for all parties of any kind of return. Mrs Evans has had a strong leadership role in this. As you can imagine, reopening the school, even only partially, is not just a matter of opening the doors on a given day. There is a myriad of issues to consider and risks to be mitigated. Any re-opening will be only after very careful preparation. The safety and wellbeing of children, staff, families and the wider community will be paramount in any plans.
We all wish that ‘normality’ could resume. We all, children and adults, miss the face-to-face contact and being with friends, teachers and colleagues. Fortunately that strong sense of community and care for each other that is felt at Wembury Primary School survives the lockdown. Mrs Evans and the staff are working very hard, always coming up with ideas for the children of fun things to do, ways to learn and staying in touch. They really do miss the children and school. I know that children and parents have been pleased to receive personal phone calls and messages. It was lovely to see the video of the support staff last week and there have been amazing examples of children’s home learning. The spirit of Wembury shines through.
As you wait for further information about reopening, please be assured that the school’s governors, in common with the school and WeST, are committed to doing whatever is in the best interests of the school and its community.
Stay safe and well!
Sheila Jenkins (Chair of Governors), on behalf of the Governing Board