Coronavirus Update – 17th March 2020
As you are probably aware, the government’s guidance on the coronavirus has changed from the ‘contain’ phase to one of delaying the spread of the virus. We are getting in touch to let you know what we are doing in light of this, and what we expect from all of you, to help make sure our school community keeps safe and calm.
We would like to reassure you that at Newtown C of E Primary School we are taking all of the necessary steps to protect our community and are continuing to follow official guidance from the Government and the Department for Education.
What is the current situation?
- The school remains open – this is reviewed daily, dependent on staffing.
- All school events and activities have been either cancelled or postponed (please see earlier correspondence)
- If you, your child or anyone you live with has these symptoms, you must follow guidance to stay at home:
- A new, continuous cough and/or
- A high temperature
- We are also advising all those children who are at increased risk of severe illness from the coronavirus to be particularly stringent in following the social distancing measures for up to 12 weeks. This is parental choice. This group includes:
- Chronic (long-term) respiratory diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis
- Chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
- Chronic kidney disease
- Chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
- Chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), a learning disability or cerebral palsy
- Problems with your spleen – for example, sickle cell disease or if you have had your spleen removed
- A weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or medicines such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
- Being seriously overweight (a BMI of 40 or above)
- People who have received an organ transplant and remain on ongoing immunosuppression medication
- People with cancer who are undergoing active chemotherapy or radiotherapy
- People with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia who are at any stage of treatment
- People with severe chest conditions such as cystic fibrosis or severe asthma (requiring hospital admissions or courses of steroid tablets)
- People with severe diseases of body systems, such as severe kidney disease (dialysis)
- If your child is unwell, is self-isolating, or is following social distancing, report this as you would normally by telephoning the school absence line 02392 584048
- We will keep you up to date with any changes to the current situation
What we are doing to protect and support pupils and staff
- If a pupil feels ill or is displaying symptoms on the school premises we will telephone parents to collect their children
- We are increasing our cleaning procedures throughout the day
- Pupils and staff are hand-washing on arrival to school, before break, before lunch and before they leave.
- Cancellation or postponement of all school events and activities, including year 5 swimming and all other actions stated in previous correspondence.
- Allowing staff and parents to do what they think is right to protect their families and children.
- Authorising all health absences regarding the Coronavirus and government advice.
What we need you to do
- If you have recently changed your contact details, please inform the school office as soon as possible via the school office 02392 584048.
- Report all pupil absences in the usual way.
- Talk to your children about the coronavirus. It is an anxious time and we should make sure children feel supported. BBC Newsround has regular updates for younger children and YoungMinds has practical steps older children can take to help with anxiety.
- Come and collect your child straight away, if we ask you to (we’ll contact you if they become ill with either a temperature or a new, continuous cough)
- Check that you and your child has access to the school website www.newtownceprimary.co.uk from home. This is where all home learning will be posted in year group folders for all to access. Once on the website visit the Children section and click on the Home Learning Resources pages.
What happens if the school has to close?
We will only close if we’re either officially advised to do so or if we do not have enough staff to safely open and run the school.
In either case, we will:
- Alert parents to the school closure, such via Parentmail, the website and Facebook
- Communicate to you daily and will let you know when the school will be reopened
- Monitor the school firstname.lastname@example.org email account and respond to all messages and queries from parents.
If you have any questions
Please consult the:
- Senior Leadership Team via the school office if you have any questions about our response to this issue
- NHS, if you want to know more about the symptoms of coronavirus. If you think you or your child may have the symptoms, use NHS 111 online if at all possible before calling 111
- Department for Education’s coronavirus helpline: 0800 046 8687, if you have any questions about the government’s response to coronavirus in relation to schools
- Government’s travel advice, if you want to know whether any upcoming trip or holiday you’re taking abroad should go ahead
It is a tricky time and we know you are worried about the impact this might have on our community. It is important we keep each other safe and talk about these events to help with any anxiety.
Following the daily briefing by Mr. Johnson, Prime Minister tonight, I will update all parents if this has any further implications for Newtown C of E Primary School.
Thank you for your continued support.