Dear Parents, Carers and friends,
Our first week of a return to some sort of normal schooling for our year 6 children has gone well. We have all been impressed with the children and the way in which they have adapted to the new routines and expectations. You should feel very proud of them; we do!
We are very much looking forward to the coming weeks. Of course, there are still many unknowns but we really want to settle down into a routine – it is what the children deserve and need.
With that in mind, our two week review period is coming to an end. We have discussed it with the Chairs of Governors and we are all in agreement that a period of consistency is now needed.
We have asked you to inform us by Monday 8th June if you will be sending your child back to school. This also includes parents of children who are already coming in; we need to confirm that they will still be attending.
This decision, by Monday 8th June, will cover the rest of the school term. There will not be another two-week review, so your decision now will be final. We need this to organise rotas. Of course, if the situation changes and you decide to withdraw your child that is perfectly fine – we support you in that decision but we need to know a starting point so that the “bubbles” can be sorted and the children in them can have some level of normality and consistency for the last four weeks.
Once we know your decision, we will finalise the groupings and let you know which days your child will be attending from Monday 15th June.
The scenario we are looking at is to expand the provision to two days a week.
One of these days will be with their class teacher, focusing on transition work for secondary school, and one day will be with a teacher from another year group with work based on a theme.
Our rationale and plan were always about starting small and building on it if the capacity was there. This does mean that the group size will increase to a max of 12 if all Yr6 children attend. We will still be able to maintain social distancing.
If you decide you would rather that your child attends for only one of these days that is fine, they will be in the group with their regular Yr6 teacher.
The downside of this is that they may not swap between the Yr6 ‘bubble’ and the key worker and vulnerable group ‘bubble’. This is taken from the DFE guidance, ‘ensure that children and young people are in the same small groups at all times each day, and different groups are not mixed during the day, or on subsequent days’.The guidelines does allow for some movement of teachers between bubbles.
We appreciate that two days a week does not help parents who need to return to work. This is the same situation for parents of year 3,4 and 5 children.
We will be fully supportive of whatever you decide. Online provision will still continue – our initial plan and rationale have allowed for that from the start – it will not change. Keyworker and vulnerable children provision will also continue for those parents and families who have accessed it thus far and who wish to continue accessing it.
You must let us know, though. We will be in contact with parents who we don’t hear from so please help us by getting in touch and letting us know your plans:
1. Do you intend to send your child/ ren into school from the 15th June?
2. Do you intend to keep them home for the rest of the term?
Either decision is perfectly acceptable.
If you decide on the latter, please rest assured that we will not allow the last year of Elmhurst to simply fizzle out. We will, when the regulations and rules allow us, plan a farewell for the Elmhurst year 6. Hoodies are already being printed and we will need some sort of gathering to give them to the children. They will not escape without saying farewell!
Please let us know, though. We cannot stress this enough. If you know of a friend who doesn’t access Facebook, Dojo, Google classroom, please share this message with them and help us to limit the number of calls we will need to make to chase people up.
If you have already contacted us about joining the group from the 15th, please rest assured that we have added you to the list – it won’t hurt though to double-check and send your message in again! We want to make sure that we don’t miss anyone.
Thank you in advance and for your ongoing support,
Mike and Tracy