Coronavirus : URGENT Letter
20th March 2020
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Coronavirus: Updated Closure letter 20/03/2020
20th March 2020
Re: Coronavirus update – school closure to most pupils
Following on from my letter yesterday to inform you that we have been instructed to close the school to almost all children after this Friday until further notice.
We have been told to follow these key principles:
- If it is at all possible for children to be at home, then they should be.
- If a child needs specialist support, is vulnerable or has a parent who is a critical worker, then childcare provision in school will be available for them.
- Parents should not rely for childcare upon those who are advised to be in the stringent social distancing category such as grandparents, friends, or family members with underlying conditions.
- Parents should also do everything they can to ensure children are not mixing socially in a way which can continue to spread the virus. They should observe the same social distancing principles as adults.
- Residential special schools, boarding schools and special settings continue to care for children wherever possible.
If your work is critical to the COVID-19 response, or you work in one of the critical sectors listed below, and you cannot keep your child safe at home then your children will be prioritised for childcare provision:
The key workers have been identified as:
Health and social care
This includes but is not limited to doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, social workers, care workers, and other frontline health and social care staff including volunteers; the support and specialist staff required to maintain the UK’s health and social care sector; those working as part of the health and social care supply chain, including producers and distributers of medicines and medical and personal protective equipment.
Education and childcare
This includes nursery and teaching staff, social workers and those specialist education professionals who must remain active during the COVID-19 response to deliver this approach.
Key public services
This includes those essential to the running of the justice system, religious staff, charities and workers delivering key frontline services, those responsible for the management of the deceased, and journalists and broadcasters who are providing public service broadcasting.
Local and national government
This only includes those administrative occupations essential to the effective delivery of the COVID-19 response or delivering essential public services such as the payment of benefits, including in government agencies and arm’s length bodies.
Food and other necessary goods
This includes those involved in food production, processing, distribution, sale and delivery as well as those essential to the provision of other key goods (for example hygienic and veterinary medicines).
Public safety and national security
This includes police and support staff, Ministry of Defence civilians, contractor and armed forces personnel (those critical to the delivery of key defence and national security outputs and essential to the response to the COVID-19 pandemic), fire and rescue service employees (including support staff), National Crime Agency staff, those maintaining border security, prison and probation staff and other national security roles, including those overseas.
This includes those who will keep the air, water, road and rail passenger and freight transport modes operating during the COVID-19 response, including those working on transport systems through which supply chains pass.
Utilities, communication and financial services
This includes staff needed for essential financial services provision (including but not limited to workers in banks, building societies and financial market infrastructure), the oil, gas, electricity and water sectors (including sewerage), information technology and data infrastructure sector and primary industry supplies to continue during the COVID-19 response, as well as key staff working in the civil nuclear, chemicals, telecommunications (including but not limited to network operations, field engineering, call centre staff, IT and data infrastructure, 999 and 111 critical services), postal services and delivery, payments providers and waste disposal sectors.
If you have not already completed the form below, please do so and bring proof of employment with you on Monday. We had thought the guidance would say that both parents/carers will need to be key workers unless you are a single key worker parent. It did not say this but has made it clear that we should be trying to have as few children in school as possible as we are all safer if we minimise social contact. If one parent who is a key worker has a partner who is not working or can work at home, we would expect you to keep your children at home. Some parents whose children are in these categories may be able to make arrangements for their children not to be in school. This is to reduce the spread of the virus as much as possible by reducing the numbers of children and staff in schools to a minimum. No parents/carers are required to send their children to school at this time.
We are still waiting for further information on the free school meal voucher system but it is likely that we will be emailing or posting these. For children who are in school, meals will be as usual – free if entitled, paid or on packed lunch.
In addition, please bear in mind that this childcare provision for key workers will remain subject to the school having sufficient staff available to enable them to remain open. If staff numbers fall, we may have to prioritise who places can be offered to. Further support for provision may then be offered through the Local Authority but we do not have details of this at present.
Thank you again for your continued support.
Deborah Richards (Mrs)
Coronavirus: Updated Closure Letter 20/03/2020
Name of pupil: ___________________________________________ Class: __________
- I am NOT a key worker and my child will remain at home until school re-opens.
- I AM a key worker employed as ________________________________________
- Place of employment: ________________________________________________
- I DO / DO NOT require a school place (please delete as applicable)
SCHOOL OFFICE USE ONLY
- Evidence of employment checked, photocopied and attached