The school is committed to providing a safe and stimulating environment in which our pupils can flourish. The safety and wellbeing of our pupils and staff are of the utmost priority.
Following the nationwide closure of schools in January 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Government advice is Pre-Reception pupils may attend school from the beginning of the Spring Term 2021.
The government measures state that such young children cannot be expected to fully socially distance according to the government recommendations and neither the school nor its staff can guarantee this. We can, however, offer measures that educate our pupils about social distancing to protect themselves and others.
Essential measures include:
Each class group will operate as its own entity (bubble or pod). We aim not to integrate pupils and teachers between different class groups to avoid the potential spread of the virus. Adults that do cross between class groups must aim to remain 2 meters or more away from others and not offer 1:1 care unless for first aid or in an emergency. Adults that cross between class groups for a significant amount of time or tend to the needs of a member of another bubble should inform the principal in any event.
Parent and Carer Guidelines
It is vital that everybody works with us to protect the school community and to respect this policy.
Rucksacks will replace blue book bags for the time being. Rucksacks must be clearly named and can be used to carry the below items:
Both lunch and mid-morning fruit must be brought into school in a single dishwasher-proof container such as Tupperware. Pupils must be able to completely manage their own lunch box independently.
Each child will need to bring their own labelled water bottle either with a flippable lid or a covered spout or teat.
Reading scheme books and reading record books will be sent home daily. Completed books returned to school must be placed in quarantine for 72 hours before being used again. Where resources may be shared between school and home such as reading record books, parents and pupils that use these books at home must wash hands after use.
On hot and sunny days, children must bring in a named sun hat. Children must have SPF 50 eight-hour sun protection applied prior to coming to school.
Those children who take part in Friday Football Club should bring their football kit into school in their school rucksack for changing into later in the day.
Drop Off and Collection Times
When the school fully reopens staggered morning start times and end of day times will continue to be in place, so that arrival and pick up times are not overcrowded outside the school. A one-way system outside the front of the school during drop-off and pick-up times must be observed. Two metre distance guidelines on the pathways outside the school for pupils and parents to line up when entering the school are also in place.
One to one violin teaching will continue when the school fully reopens. The violin teacher will aim to work within a 2-metre distance of others within the classroom. As there can be a need for close contact and adjustment, the violin teacher will wear a visor and must aim to avoid face to face contact and minimise time spent within 1 metre when teaching. The violin teacher must wash hands or use hand sanitiser between tuition with students. Pupils will be reminded to wash hands or use hand sanitiser after the lesson.
The Volunteers and Visitors Policy remains in place. In addition to this, visitors will only be permitted by advance arrangement and declaration of good health. Visitors will be asked to continue to follow any government guidelines including two metre social distancing during their visit as well as the wearing of a face mask.
Social Distancing Guidelines
The school is unable to guarantee strict social distancing with such young pupils. The programme in place will aim to reduce the risks of contamination and offer a suitable safe learning environment.
Normally the children are expected to say good morning to the teacher welcoming them in the lobby each morning by shaking hands and making eye contact. Sadly, shaking hands during this time is prohibited.
Washing Hands and Hygiene
Pupils must come to school with clean hands and short clean nails. Pupils will continue to adhere to a handwashing programme throughout the day. Washing hands thoroughly for 20 seconds (singing Happy Birthday twice) with running water and soap and dry them thoroughly. Hand washing is particularly important upon arrival to school, before and after eating and after sneezing or coughing. Pupils and staff will be asked to wash hands or apply hand sanitiser upon entering the school building.
Additional handwashing facilities have been made available to pupils. Soap, warm and cold water, paper towels, hand dryers as well as alcohol hand sanitiser are all available and will be part of our strict hand washing education programme.
The school continues to promote the ‘Catch it, Bin it, Kill it’ approach when coughing, sneezing and blowing noses.
Pupils will be encouraged where possible not to touch their faces or to put objects in their mouths.
The resources made available for pupils will be carefully considered. For very frequently used equipment such as pencils and pens for Reception, Year One and Year Two pupils, we aim to offer each child their own pot to avoid sharing. Classroom based resources, such as books and games can be used and shared within ‘a bubble’, these should be cleaned regularly. Resources shared between class groups or ‘bubbles’ such as sports and art equipment should be cleaned between bubbles or left unused and out of reach for a period of 48 hours (72 hours for plastics).
Uniform and Personal Protective Equipment
Regulation school uniform is required for school. Children must be able to manage their clothing independently and may wear the uniform they find most comfortable. On cooler days pupils should come in warmer uniform as the school is ventilated.
Should a parent wish for their child to wear any form of protective equipment, it is recommended that the parent email or call the school to discuss requirements. As mentioned the school will adhere to a strict hand washing programme. Alcohol hand sanitiser is also available for pupils throughout the school.
Illness, Contamination and Shielding
The school illness policy remains in place. No child should come to school if they are unwell or have been unwell in the previous 24 hours. The school may send a child home if there is any doubt about a child’s wellness.
Illness Policy in relation to COVID-19
Nobody will be allowed in school if they show signs of COVID-19. This may include:
It is understood that as more is learnt more about the virus, new signs and symptoms may be revealed. If this is the case, the school will continue to keep families informed and updated. As a general rule of thumb, anyone with any cold-like symptoms should remain at home. Those that show symptoms will be asked to self-isolate at home and get tested for COVID-19.
NHS Test and Trace
Anyone who displays symptoms of COVID-19 must get a test. Tests can be booked online through the NHS testing and tracing coronavirus website https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/testing-and-tracing/ or ordered by telephone via NHS 119. Essential workers, which includes staff members, have priority access to testing. The Test and Trace process requires a patient to provide details of anyone they have been in close contact with if tests results are positive for COVID-19.
Testing positive for COVID-19
Those who been tested positive for COVID-19 will not be allowed to return to school until they have self-isolated at home for 10 full days and all symptoms have disappeared. Fellow house members should self-isolate for 10 days. Affected staff and pupils will be allowed to return to school only upon the Principal’s agreement. The school has the right to ask a pupil or staff member to remain home for longer if deemed necessary.
If a member of a pupil or staff member’s household shows signs of or tests positive for COVID-19, then all members of the household must remain home until the member of household has been tested. In the event they test positive, all members of the household must remain home for 10 days. Once this self-isolation period is over, the Principal will agree if it is acceptable to return to school.
Presenting with symptoms during the school day
The school has a fully equipped Sick Bay and will be used for non-COVID-19 suspected illness. COVID-19 symptomatic pupils will be attended to separately from other pupils.
Tracking and Limiting Contamination
In the event that a pupil, staff member or a member of their household tests positive for COVID-19, the school must be notified immediately. The school will notify all those within the class group or those who may be at risk of contamination. The school adheres to a confidentiality code of practice and will not release any names in this event. In the event this is the case, we will ask that the class group continues to learn from home to ease the spread of the virus for 10 days. Other household members of that wider class do not need to self-isolate unless the child or staff member they live with in that class subsequently develops symptoms.
Home Learning Programme
In the event a pupil, class group or the entire school are advised to self-isolate or stay at home due to a COVID-19 outbreak, a remote home-learning programme will be offered.
Framework of Home Learning for Parents
The School is committed to providing continuity of education to its pupils and aims to do this through a Home Learning Programme using an online platform. The protocols described below give an outline of how teaching and learning, pastoral care and safeguarding will operate during school closure. However, it should be understood that this situation is both dynamic and unprecedented; therefore, these protocols are subject to change and adaptation. Parents/carers will be required to support the School and put certain measures in place to ensure a successful delivery.
Our program will have five guiding principles:
Clear learning objectives, instructions for pupil tasks and success criteria in line with the EYFS and KS1 curriculum in addition to a focus on providing teacher feedback and the collation of evidence of student progress.
Teacher-pupil connections will be maintained through the use of live interactions between teachers and pupils, videos and voice recordings. Teachers will offer feedback on the Seesaw platform and also maintain telephone contact.
Tasks will be differentiated and adapted to individual pupil needs. We will offer pupils and parents opportunities to connect with teachers directly when needed.
Teachers will monitor pupil progress against clear learning objectives and success criteria.
There will be regular opportunities for parents to ask questions.
Infrastructure to support home learning
During the school closure, work will be set and delivered using the platform Seesaw. Seesaw is a child friendly platform that allows the teachers to upload instructions and assign activities throughout the day. Pupils then have the opportunity to respond to the teacher’s instructions using a variety of multimedia. For example, they can record a video, take a photograph or complete online templates set by the teacher.
To complement this, we have sent workbooks home for pupils in Reception, Year One and Year Two to keep at home for the term. Children will use these workbooks to record their homework in each week, as well as use in the event of class or school closure.
In order to facilitate the success of remote learning, it is important that the appropriate WIFI or hardware is available; such as a tablet, Chromebook, computer or laptop. Please let us know if you have any concerns in this regard. We also ask parents to support the School by promoting the safe use of the internet and digital technology at home through providing supervised access. Please note that we have placed online safeguarding links for parents on our website. Seesaw works well on any computer or device. We do find that our pupils work best when using a touchscreen device such as an I-pad. You will be required to download the free Seesaw Class App onto your chosen device and the School will provide you with unique log-in details.
As well as Seesaw, we may utilize additional programmes such as Bug Club and Mathletics for pupils in Reception, Year One and Year Two.
The efficiency of these programmes minimises parents’ need to print and scan.
You can use the following link to access our personalised Pupils Guide to Seesaw https://www.annemount.co.uk/2020/04/14/pupil-guide-to-seesaw/
An additional support video has been made for our new Pre-Reception Parent https://www.annemount.co.uk/2020/04/14/addtional-parent-guide-for-pre-reception-parents/
Setting of work
The School will provide appropriate amounts of work and activities to support your child’s learning during the period the School is closed or a class or pupil is isolating. Due to the nature of remote learning, activities set will not take the same amount of time as a normal school day, but they will provide a range of tasks across the full curriculum.
It is important for this age group that there is a mixture of online and physical work, to ensure consistency with key skills, such as handwriting, reading, fine motor, mental mathematics and composition. Offering a balance of screen time and practical activities will be our aim, along with ensuring the consistency of your child’s progress and development.
The delivery of work at home is up to the parent/carer as this will depend on various personal circumstances, such as childcare arrangements, the needs of siblings, parental working hours and the health and wellness of the family. As a general guide for this age group, and with this programme in mind, we would always suggest that Literacy and Maths are completed in the morning.
We will be offering a welcome greeting every morning and afternoon to each class via Zoom. In the event of an individual pupil isolating, a mutually convenient timetable for Zoom sessions will be arranged. Zoom is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy, reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, chat, and webinars. You will be sent an invitation by email that will invite you to a regularly scheduled Zoom meeting with the class teacher and pupils.
Teachers will assign activities in two batches. The morning sessions will be available to complete from 8.30am. The afternoon sessions will be available to complete from 1.00pm. There will be no time restrictions on completing any class activities and they will remain available to pupils to complete in their own time. Teachers will be available during their usual working hours should you wish to contact them about a set activity. Please email the School office with a question or to request a telephone call. A request can also be made on the Notes page of Seesaw.
If a member of the household becomes ill, the delivery of home learning could be impacted. Please communicate any illness as usual by email to the School office. The class teacher can support and monitor appropriate work levels, just as they would if a child were unwell in usual school circumstances. It may also arise that staff are ill and work is then set by a different teacher. We will let you know by email if this was the case.
In the event a child must self isolate when school is in session a personalised Home Learning Programme will be provided.
Parents should provide an appropriate and suitable place conducive to study and support their child to complete the work set by the School in the given time frame. A table or desk with a chair where your child can reach the floor is best. In the Early Years, the children are used to working in different ways around the classroom and so at times your child might like to lie down on their stomach with a clipboard or stand up when working/reading, as suits the task. Having regular breaks, especially screen breaks, is important and working in no longer than 30-minute cycles is advised. For Pre-Reception and Reception pupils, this time will be shorter and task dependent.
Supporting your child with their remote learning
The best form of support is through guiding your child to complete the tasks as independently as possible. It is helpful to check that they understand the Learning Objective for an activity. It is important that parents do not end up completing tasks for their child through didactic instruction. In order for any learning to be meaningful, it should be the child’s own work. We are aware of your child’s ability and the level they are capable of and so please do try to encourage and celebrate their independent learning, always praising effort.
Teachers will provide appropriate feedback during the school day and will issue each activity with Adult Instructions, guiding parents through the work set. If parents need support or further clarity, they can email the School Office to arrange a phone call with the class teacher or send a question via the Notes page of Seesaw. We aim to make periodic telephone calls to each family to check-in and support you throughout this process. We will also be able to engage in virtual sessions with your child.
The class teacher will continue to assess your child’s work and provide feedback appropriate to the tasks.
Geraldine, the SEND coordinator, alongside the class teacher will continue to communicate with parents about any additional or external intervention your child receives to support parents during the closure period.
Communication between home and School during any period of school closure is essential. The School will provide helpful feedback to parents to support your child’s ongoing progress. This will be through conversations on the phone, emails and Seesaw as appropriate.
Pastoral care and wellbeing during school closure
We understand that this will be an unusual and possibly challenging time for you and your family as it will not just be a case of your child embarking on home learning but home life might be very altered during the school closure. Geraldine and the staff team will be available to talk to parents about these challenges, just as they always have been. Please do not hesitate to contact the School office if you require support of any kind. This will be a different experience for all of us and the best way to ensure its success is through open and honest communication.
The primary responsibility for the pastoral care of the pupil rests with their parents. However, the teachers will enquire about pupil wellbeing throughout the period of the closure and follow the pastoral care systems in place to support pupils, as appropriate. Please be assured that the teachers will continue to engage in supporting your child’s social and emotional development and will be to hand to guide parents.
Safeguarding during school closure
During the school closure, pupils, parents and staff are reminded that the School’s Safeguarding Policy still applies to all interactions between pupils and staff. If a staff member has any concerns about a child, whether they are at home in the community or at school, they would follow the School policy and contact the Designated Safeguarding Lead: