Message to parents / carers
Dear Parents / Carers
My thanks once again for your patience and understanding with closing the school at such short notice today. Following meeting with staff and suitable planning time, I am now in a position to update you on the plans we have for both the school opening for vulnerable children and the children of key workers and for our provision of remote learning. This will start tomorrow, Wednesday 6th January. Please remember this is a very fluid situation and we have had to respond to the closing of schools at very short notice, so there will no doubt be some ‘teething issues’ initially but we will ‘iron these out’ over the coming days. I will continue to send out regular updates, so please check our school website, Parentmail and our social media feeds.
Even though we have been through a ‘lockdown’ situation previously, during the spring and summer terms of 2020, there are different expectations this time round and it will operate slightly differently this time. We are working on the premise set out by government that this lockdown will run until February half term (12/2/21) and school will open to all children again as normal on Monday 22nd February. Please remember if you have any questions or concerns to contact the school on firstname.lastname@example.org We are here to support you, your children and your family through this difficult time. Any concerns or questions about Free School Meals, foodbank access, general welfare, vulnerable children or key workers, please contact Mrs Henshall our Assistant Headteacher on email@example.com
Vulnerable Children and Children of Key workers
Today, we have individually contacted all families if we think your child / children are in this category, to offer you a place starting on Wednesday 6th January. If we have contacted you, I would really encourage you to take up our offer, as we feel it would be in the bests interests of your son / daughter to be in school. If we have not contacted you and you feel your child should be in this group and in school, please contact Mrs Henshall on the e mail address above ASAP. When this group of children are in school, they do not need to be in uniform, it will be the same staggered start / end times that we have been using this year (between 8.40am – 3.20pm), arrival and drop off will be at the Asda car park gates and lunch will be provided or they can bring their own packed lunch. Children will be placed in a year group bubble (this might be different from their class bubble) and they will remain in that bubble throughout. They will be supervised by staff and spend the time in school completing the work that has been set for them remotely by their class teach (please see below – Remote Learning). They should come to school expecting to complete the work their class teacher has set them and our staff here in school will support them in doing this.
As a parent myself, please understand that I fully appreciate all the issues that come with remote learning and ‘home schooling’. The best place for children to learn is in school but we must work together to make this work as best we can for the benefit of your son / daughter. The government has recently set out clear expectations in terms of remote learning, it should be a minimum of 3 hours per day. Like last time, all the remote learning for your child will be in their class page on the school website. Staff have been uploading this work today and will continue to do so. The daily work set will consist of maths (using a module called ‘White Rose Maths’ which consists of video demonstrations, followed by activities), English related work and another subject which will be changed each day. In addition, children will be asked to complete some of the various learning packages we use in school, these include ‘Rock Stars Times Tables’, ‘Bedrock’ for English and ‘Spelling Shed’. Reading is always hugely beneficial to a child’s academic progress and please try to continue to do as much reading as you possibly can with your child / children during this period. It is expected that your child / children will complete and engage in all this work on a daily basis. This will be monitored by their class teacher and if they are not completing the work set, we will be in contact with you.
As from the Monday 11th January onwards, your child’s class teacher will also have a short daily tutorial with the class. This will be conducted via Zoom (details and invites etc to follow later). This will be a chance for your son / daughter to see their teacher on a daily basis, discuss any issues they might have with their work, a chance for staff to provide some specific support and it will also be a chance for the children to ask any questions they might have about the work.
We have worked hard over recent months to ensure that all children have access to devices they need to ensure they can complete work on line and remotely from home. If this still presents a problem for you and your child / children, please contact the school office at the admin e mail address above ASAP.
Similarly, if your child is in need of any stationery, to help them complete their work at home or needs to swap / collect a new reading book, please contact school.
During this period of remote learning, we would still like to celebrate our children’s work and achievements. We are calling this ‘Highfields Stars from Afar’. These will be shared on social media and on our website. If you would like to send in a photo of your child’s work or any achievements they are proud of, please do so by sending a message on our Facebook page. This will be closely monitored by our communications team.
We are aware that with the sudden announcement last night, children will have left their belongings in school. If your son / daughter needs to collect something from school (eg. reading book, pencil case) or needs stationery to help them work from home over these next 5 weeks, then they can come and collect it on the specified slots below. Please come to the Asda car park gate, please maintain social distancing, adults please wear face coverings and only the child can enter the school building and go to their classroom;
· Year 6 – Wednesday 6th Jan – 3.30pm - 4pm
· Year 5 – Wednesday 6th Jan – 4.00pm – 4.30pm
· Year 4 – Wednesday 6th Jan – 4.30pm – 5pm
· Year 3 – Thursday 7th Jan – 3.30pm – 4pm
· Year 2 – Thursday 7th Jan – 4.00pm – 4.30pm
· Year 1 and Reception – Thursday 7th Jan – 4.30pm – 5pm
My thanks once again for your support and understanding. Please remember that we will do all we can to support you, your children and your family over the weeks ahead, feel free to contact us at any time. As I said yesterday, it is more important than ever that we work together during these coming weeks for the benefit of our children and our community.
Acting Headteacher Alsager Highfields Community Primary School
Executive Headteacher AMAT