Dear parents and carers
I would like to thank you for your support during the last week, where, for the first time since the pandemic began, we have had confirmed cases of Covid-19 within the academy.
We were confident in our systems and were able on each occasion to quickly identify, with the help of Public Health England, those individuals who were ‘close proximity contacts’ and take the right action. Our risk assessments, teaching and learning practices, remote learning policies and community bubble areas within the school are under constant review. We have come a long way since September, but sadly we are seeing increased cases of coronavirus in West Devon.
It is with this in mind that I am writing to inform you that we intend to strengthen our approach to health and safety in this pandemic still further. There will be additional actions and new systems that will be implemented throughout the school from 7 December. This will include a strict one way system around each building, and more movement between lessons in order to prevent groups congregating. We will continue to ensure we have separate year group entrances, ensure year groups have separate eating areas and maintain the use of face coverings in the circulation spaces. We know from the latest guidance that ventilation and hand sanitising are the greatest mitigating factors against the spread of the virus. This is why we have to fully ventilate the buildings (even though it is cold) and ask students to use the sanitiser provided.
This change will also see a return to the use of more specialised subject rooms and spaces to learn in. Teachers will take on greater cleaning responsibilities during lesson changeovers, whilst being able to call upon their subject specific teaching and learning tools and resources to improve the teaching and learning within the classrooms for the students.
None of the changes will affect our year group community areas for registration or recess times where all year groups will have their own designated areas for pastoral care, eating and outdoor play, as well as their own community bathrooms. This means that there will be no direct crossing of our communities for longer than is advised, as well as meaning we are still able to keep to the DfE guidance on ‘bubbles’ within secondary schools.
Thank you for your ongoing support at this difficult time. If you have any questions regarding the issues raised in this letter, then please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and a member of the senior team will answer any questions.