10th December 2021
Update on Covid and Information on Partial School Closure for Years 7 – 9
Dear parents and carers,
We currently have more than 5 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in our school setting that have been identified in Years 7 and 8 and this meets the threshold set by the Government.
The threshold set by the Government is:
- Five children, students or staff, who are likely to have mixed closely, test positive for COVID-19 within a 10-day period, OR
- 10% of children, pupils, students or staff who are likely to have mixed closely, test positive for COVID-19 within a 10-day period.
Today, we have reviewed our current levels of staff absence and risk assessment and I have sought advice from Public Health and the Schools Relationship Team in Cheshire West and Chester. Due to the number of teachers currently absent from school due to Covid, along with extremely vulnerable staff who are now required to work at home and absence in our support team, including cleaners, we have assessed the staffing ratios and made the following decision, to keep everyone safe.
The school will close to students in Years 7, 8 and 9 from Monday 13th until Friday 17th December. All of these students will be expected to continue with their learning remotely through Google Classroom.
Students in Years 10 and 11 will be expected in as normal and for any students who are currently unwell or isolating in these year groups, they are expected to continue with their learning using Google Classroom if they are well enough.
School will remain open to all staff who are fit and well and to students in Years 10 and 11.
Due to the increasing cases within school, of both staff and students, Public Health have recommended that all students in Years 7, 8 and 9 book a PCR test, even if they have no Covid-19 symptoms, to keep everyone safe in your family. Testing can be arranged by calling 119 or via the NHS website: www.nhs.uk/coronavirus
Please ensure you inform the school of any positive cases by phoning reception or emailing email@example.com
Students in Year 7 who are due to go on the English trip on Tuesday are still able to go at this stage, if they are well and a separate letter will be sent to those students, confirming the details.
We know that you may find this concerning but it is recognised that education settings may meet the threshold from time to time and we are continuing to monitor the situation and work closely with Public Health England and our local Outbreak Management Hub.
To reassure parents of students in Years 10 and 11, the measures that we have put in place across the school (Stage 1 measures) until the end of term, are:
- Continue to monitor case levels to determine whether threshold is met.
- Increased levels of ventilation
- Increased levels and frequency of cleaning classrooms, toilets and common areas
- Increased levels of hand hygiene
- Letters issued to all parents
- Enhanced cleaning in affected classrooms
- Enhanced frequency of hand hygiene
- Reorientation of desks to face away from each other
- Remote assemblies
- Outdoor PE wherever possible
- After school clubs cancelled for the last week of term
- No singing/similar activities indoors involving increased respiratory secretions
- Areas of school to be zoned off to allow for a deeper clean of areas in use
- Deep cleaning of the whole school site from external company to take place in January before students and staff return
- Re-introduction of 2m social distancing and face coverings in common areas where social distancing cannot be achieved
- Monitor twice weekly LFD testing and reporting along with daily testing for any students with positive household contacts
- Reinforce messaging to staff to not come in in the event of experiencing the wider symptoms and to get a PCR test.
- Face coverings to be worn in all communal areas
We know that many students will be disappointed not to be in at the end of term, but have made this decision to keep students, staff and families safe.
For all students eligible for free school meals, they will be sent in the usual way via a text message next week and this will be for £15 to cover Monday to Friday. A further text will then be sent with vouchers for £70 to cover the Christmas period, all vouchers will be for Aldi.
Thank you for your continued support and please rest assured that we will continue to monitor the situation carefully and to be guided by the advice of our Local Public Health Team. I will keep you updated as necessary.