Dear parents and carers,
We are very excited about having all of our children back and seeing them all on Monday! Although returning Nursery children restart on Tuesday.
Whilst we are very hopeful and optimistic about what the year ahead will bring, the rise in cases in Scotland since schools have gone back is something we are also mindful of. With that in mind, but also following DfE and PHE advice, we are rightly moving forward and removing many of our COVID measures. However, we are keeping a small number of measures and will review them as time goes on. This will enable us to both open with a little bit of caution, but also allow us to reinstate any previous COVID measures easily.
Our school day
As we told you before the summer, we are going to continue having a soft start, though this will be slightly reduced to ten minutes (8.50am-9.00am). This has been beneficial for many reasons, especially for families with several children. It has created a less stressful start to the day for children and families and has also added some additional learning time. It has also enabled parents and carers to talk to members of the Senior Leadership Team in the yards every day. A member of support staff will be at each door to welcome our children each day.
Year 6 children have a fixed start time of 8.50am. It worked well for our oldest children moving on to High School, as it ensures they are in a habit of having a fixed start time to prepare them for this at High School.
We will no longer have staggered finish times at the end of the school day for individual year groups, unless COVID dictates that they need to return. Instead, we will revert back to our pre COVID finish times.
3.15pm for Reception to Year 2 children
3.20pm for Year 3 to Year 6 children
As we told you before the summer, an earlier finish on Fridays has now come to an end. This was introduced as a response to managing the many ongoing challenges of COVID across school but is no longer necessary as we move forward.
Doorways and entrances
We are using the same entrances for each year group as we did during COVID.
Reception and Year 1 – use their long-standing entrances
Year 2 and Year 3 – via the bottom door in the KS2 yard
Year 4 – via the door at the bottom in the KS1 yard
Year 5 – via the first doorway in the KS2 yard
Year 6 – via the main school entrance
Parents and carers
Schools reopening after the summer will almost certainly create an increased rate of COVID infections nationally. This is as much about families mixing more widely as it is about the children mixing in school. Therefore we will be continuing with the following measures as a precaution.
- Year 5 and Year 6 parents are to remain off site at drop off and pick up. Not only will this reduce the number of adults on the school site by up to 120, it will also help reduce overall mixing and congestion in the yard. We saw this have huge benefits in supporting our older children to become more independent and High School ready.
- Parents and carers will only be allowed into school by appointment. Where at all possible, telephone calls will be used. The office is available via both telephone and email if you need to arrange an appointment.
- Please can we ask parents and carers to leave the school site as soon as possible after dropping or collecting your children and to not linger and gather with other families. This is to reduce opportunities for COVID transmission.
We are extremely excited to see that our new trim trail in memory of Frank, is finally almost finished! There have been a number of significant delays due to timber and other shortages. The trim trail is on an all weather surface, not on the grass, so our children can use it all year round!
We expect it will open to our children in the second week of term. Frank’s year group and his family will have the chance to explore and use it first! For health and safety reasons, children will not be allowed to play on equipment before or after the end of the school day. This is to keep our children safe.
- On PE days our children should continue coming into school in their school PE kit. But they must have our school PE kit or plain tracksuit trousers (not sports leggings) in the same colour.
- All children must be in full school uniform. Please CLICK HERE for a reminder of the uniform. A polite reminder please that leggings are NOT part of our school uniform and are not acceptable school trousers. Navy jumpers and cardigans are also not part of our uniform. Thank you for your support to make sure that our children look and feel smart and ready to learn.
- Uniform can be bought between 3.30pm and 5pm on a Monday night. Or alternatively, please send a note and the correct money in with your child and we will send the requested uniform home with them.
We are over the moon that the full school menu will be offered every day to all children. Due to bubbles ending, all children will return to eating in a dining area from Monday. However, year groups will eat in separate places or at different times to help identify close contacts and reduce year group mixing inside in case close contacts of a positive case need to be identified.
Trips, visits and after school clubs
- Swimming is restarting without restrictions and Year 5 will continue swimming until Christmas. Then Year 4 will have the opportunity.
- After school clubs will begin and for caution, will restart initially for individual year groups. As the term unfolds and we see how infection rates are, we will then aim to broaden our after school offer back to pre-COVID times. We know how much our children enjoyed their time doing activities after school!
- Educational visits are now allowed and staff are currently planning their first visits in a long time for this term.
- High Borrans is open again and Year 4 and Year 6 will all have the chance to go in the spring or summer term. Dates will be shared with you shortly. It is not possible to ‘catch up’ this opportunity for any year groups affected by COVID, as they simply do not have the capacity to offer schools any extra booking opportunities. Both year groups will go during the school week, and children will go in two groups for half the week each. This ensures there will be enough capacity for every single child to go if they choose to.
There are three further INSET days this school year. We are now able to confirm the final dates school will be closed to children.
Wednesday 22nd December 2021 – 7th January 2022 – Monday 14th March 2022
We cannot wait to welcome your children back on Monday and to meet many new children and families who are starting with us. We all hope that the year ahead will be happy, healthy and as ‘normal’ as possible for us all. We know that the last 18 months have been exhausting for us all and that we are all weary of COVID and its impact on us all in so many ways. Whilst we are optimistic, we will of course review and make any changes needed in light of local or national COVID changes. Our priority will always be to be as safe a school as we can possibly be.
I hope that you have all managed to have a restful and relaxing summer. See you next week!