I am writing to you with information for the coming weeks, as it stands at the moment. As I am sure you will understand, it is hard to predict what the impact on schools might be but I want to reassure you that staff are working hard to look after your children and we appreciate your support and understanding.
We have had reports over the weekend that some children have fevers and will be self-isolating from tomorrow. I am sharing this not to cause panic (as it is not confirmed as coronavirus) but so that you are aware in case your child or someone in your family is in the more vulnerable groups.
From Gov.uk website:
This advice is for people with symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), including those with a diagnosis of coronavirus (COVID-19) infection, who must remain at home until they are well.
The main messages are:
- if you have symptoms of coronavirus infection (COVID-19), however mild, do not leave your home for 7 days from when your symptoms started this action will help protect others in your community while you are infectious
- plan ahead and ask others for help to ensure you can successfully stay at home
- ask your employer, friends and family to help you to get the things you need to stay at home
- stay at least 2 metres (about 3 steps) away from other people in your home whenever possible
- sleep alone, if possible
- wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, each time using soap and water, or use hand sanitiser
- stay away from vulnerable individuals, such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions, as much as possible
- you do not need to call NHS 111 to go into self-isolation. If your symptoms worsen during home isolation or are no better after 7 days, contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999
It is possible that the school may need to operate as normal but with less staff than usual. In order to minimise disruption to the children, we will assess numbers of children and staff daily and if necessary:
- Amalgamate classes to make best use of our available teachers
- Adapt the curriculum to accommodate fluctuating attendance and fluid grouping
- As a last report, send some classes/year groups home in order to maintain safe staff to student ratios on site. This would be a last resort as our intention is to continue as normally as possible and to minimise disruption to parents.
Staff will have to follow advice from Public Health England about attending work if they have been in contact with cases of Coronavirus and may not be able to attend work for a short period even though they want to do so.
Further Information and Reducing Anxiety
Clearly this is a developing situation and we are trying to minimise concern amongst the children.
Together we should:
- Steer children away from some of the news coverage and social media channels.
- Stick to known facts rather than speculation.
- Avoid passing on our own concerns to the children
I am sorry that it will not be possible to accommodate the wishes of all families with any decision regarding school closure or other significant interventions, but we will endeavour to communicate promptly and regularly. Our resources may be stretched for some time, but please remember that staff will be doing their very best to look after your children. If you have any queries please talk to us.