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Bishop Ridley News - 11th September 2020

Dear Parents and Carers,

Please take a few moments to read the information below. 


COVID-Safe Steps - Update

On behalf of the staff of Bishop Ridley, can I thank you for helping us to keep everyone as safe as possible since we reopened after the summer holiday! Our theme for collective worship is ‘Together’ and nowhere has this been clearer than in the way families, children and staff have acted to keep social distance and follow the COVID precautions.

We are constantly reviewing our processes and procedures to keep the school community safe, especially with regards to COVID-19. Today, I have one new request and two key reminders:

  • A New Request - Face Coverings

From Monday 14th September, I would like parents/carers to consider wearing face coverings when on school grounds and especially if you need to talk to a member of staff or visit the office.

You have been so supportive in following our requests and I recognise that some people will not be able to wear face coverings and that others may be uncomfortable doing so. However, I feel confident that those who can add to the safety of others, will do so.

The safest way to communicate with the school is through telephone or email. I have had feedback from the office that most parents are following our request and ringing the office, rather than coming in. If you have an urgent issue and you have to speak to a member of staff, then please have a face covering to reduce the risk to the teacher (and therefore the other children in school).

  • Two Reminders

1. ) Please do not arrive at school to drop off your child before their allocated time slot.

8:30-8:45am for Nursery, Reception, Year 5 & Year 6

8:45-9:00am for Years 1, 2, 3 & 4

2. ) When you are on site, please try to keep 2 metres distancing from other families. I recognise that this is not always possible due to the restrictions of our site.


Communicating Confirmed COVID Cases

We do not currently have any confirmed COVID-19 cases. We will write to all parents/carers to let you know if we have a confirmed case of COVID-19 among our staff or pupils.

In such an instance, we will likely be working under direct advice from Public Health Bexley or Public Health England. 


On-Line Learning in case of Self-Isolation or Lockdown

When we reopened in September, the government gave each school until the end of September to put in place arrangements to allow all children to access a broad and balanced curriculum, regardless of whether they are learning in school, or at home.

This week the teachers have successfully completed a trial of our new On-Line learning procedures.

From now, each year group will upload their weekly plan, along with daily lesson input and resource sheets for English, maths and one other subject, every day (check your child’s Class Page - https://www.bishopridleyschool.org.uk/class-pages-1/ ).

This means that if your child is in quarantine or self-isolation, then they can access the same work as the rest of their classmates everyday. This can then be completed, or photographed and emailed into the teacher every day for them to review and provide feedback (just like during lockdown).

In addition, if the school were to become subject to a local lockdown, or enforced closure of a “bubble”, we will continue to use the class pages on the website and accompany this with a daily video for English and maths along with resources to allow learning to continue at home.

I am sure that you will join me in thanking the teachers for their hard work and dedication to support every child’s learning – whether they are in the classroom or isolated at home.


Breakfast Club & After School Club

I am very aware that some families are eager for the Breakfast and After School Clubs to restart as soon as possible. My aim has been to ensure that we are able to safely run the vital day-to-day learning provision of the school, before restarting Breakfast & After School Club.

Similar to the reopening of the school, the government has published guidance about reopening out-of-school clubs. This includes bubbles with defined spaces to play and changes to staffing (e.g. to support pupils who may have symptoms of COVID-19) (to name but two). We will ensure, of course, that we can meet these minimum requirements before we decide to reopen.

This does mean that we would have to make some substantial changes to the way the clubs were run which may involve limiting the number of places available.

If you are interested in using Breakfast or After-School club, please can you click to complete the form here: https://forms.gle/skJKirKYUvFdj7Jr7

This will not commit you, nor guarantee you a place, but will help us to plan.


Summer Holiday Building Works

It seems like a long time ago now, but I am delighted to confirm that our summer building works were successfully completed.

We have:

  • a lovely new roof along the full length of the main corridor at the front of the school,
  • a renovated kitchen/servery
  • the markings for the disabled parking bay complete: and
  • all of the external security lights replaced with bright, energy efficient lighting.

Many thanks to Ms Davies (School Business Manager), Mr Smith (Premises Manager) and all of the site team for working around and cleaning up the resulting noise, mess and dust!


Live Collective Worship

I arrived in school this morning with a slight feeling of dread! I had promised the staff and children that today I would run our first live collective worship on Zoom (all fully password protected with waiting rooms etc).

I needn’t have worried! With Mr Martindale’s tech support, and to the humour of the teachers, we met together to share our Bible verse, celebrate the pupils of the week and listen to a prayer.

Having now become used to the segregated bubbles around school, it was a delight to stand in the hall and hear every class clapping to congratulate the Pupils of the Week and to hear a school-wide “Amen” at the end of the prayer.

COVID-19 remains a serious threat and I am glad that as a school community we are able to find small ways to remember that we are all in this together.

 

Best wishes to you and your family,

Stuart Keep

Head Teacher
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