CE First School

Inspiring Learning for Life

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Whole School Letter 03.11.20

Tuesday 3rd November 2020

Dear Parents,

It has been fantastic to see everyone back in school this week. We hope that the children managed to recharge their batteries over the half term break and that families were able to enjoy some time together during what continues to be a trying and concerning period for everyone.

Thank you for following the advice issued prior to the half term break concerning drop off and collection. You will have noticed that staff are now wearing visors or face coverings at these times. We spent time preparing children for this yesterday and going through why it is necessary.

We have of course managed to so far avoid closing any bubbles or the whole school, but it is hugely important that we are all now extremely vigilant. If a child or member of staff in school becomes ill with any of the symptoms of Covid19 we shall send them home. Children must be collected immediately once a parent has been contacted. You will need to book a test for the child and isolate them in the meantime (for two weeks without a negative test result- If the test result comes back negative, when the child is well enough to return to school they can come back. Again, please be reminded that if anyone in your household displays any of the main symptoms, then the whole family should isolate immediately. If that family member then receives a negative test result, then the isolation period can end immediately. However, families should not wait for a test or result before isolating. This is particularly important given the risk that children might then bring the virus into school without displaying symptoms. Please do help us to protect everyone.

From what has happened in other schools both locally and nationally, we also want to share with you what would be the most likely outcome if we were to get a positive case within our school. In the event of this, the Local Outbreak Response Team (LORT) organises what happens next. Here at Cropthorne with Charlton, we would probably have to close a bubble for two weeks. In our school, one bubble consists of Mrs Jones’ & Mrs Hunt’s classes, the other, Mrs Komor’s & Miss Hughes’ classes. Depending on the amount of staff affected it may also be necessary to close the entire school for a short term basis whilst we work with the Local Authority to ensure our staffing levels are such that we can operate safely. This remains unlikely but we wished to make you aware of this. Children in the unaffected bubble would not need to isolate and they would attend school as soon as their bubble has reopened, unless they were to be directed otherwise.

Remembrance Day is always a special day in our school calendar and whilst we cannot physically come together for our service we will be holding a virtual service on the 11th November to learn and remember why it is such an important day in a different way. Rev’d Dangerfield will be attending our virtual service along with Evie’s (Y3) & James’ (YR) Dad, who will be representing Armed Forces Personnel. We thank them for their support.   We will honour the two-minute silence during our Service. From now until then, we will be selling Poppies, for a donation of £1. If you do send in money for the poppy appeal, please reinforce why we do it.

Parents Evenings Meeting will take place on Wednesday and Thursday this week, please contact the office if you have not yet been able to book your appointment. Please bear with us as we are having to do things differently but we are looking forward to updating you on how your child has settled into school and what they need to focus upon with regards to their learning. Thank you in advance for helping us to keep appointments to 10 minutes.

Following a review of our staffing arrangements last half term, we wish to notify parents of children in Chameleons & Cockatoos that Mrs Freeman is moving across to support Chameleons class more frequently for the time being. Mr Ramus remains with Cockatoos. Mrs Freeman will still welcome the children in Cockatoos each morning if Mr Ramus is not in school, and continue to supervise them at lunchtimes. 

Microsoft Teams –  Later this week your child will be provided with a login for Microsoft Teams, instructions for this will accompany this week’s class letters. Initially we will be using Microsoft Teams to stay in regular face to face contact with pupils, should we be required to close a bubble or the whole school for an extended period. Several parents commented on how children missed this when we were unable to do this during the summer, and we feel the same way. The rest of the learning will be delivered in a similar way as during the first lockdown period, but more frequently and in shorter segments than last time. This frequency is possible because we expect that in the event of closure, this time it is likely that staff will also need to be isolating and not required to be in school as they were during the March- July period.  Again, we hope that this does not become necessary.

We know school is having to run differently in lots of ways than it has done in the past and we like you, and like the children, miss many of the things we can’t do at the moment. We are resolved that things will get better eventually and appreciate everyone’s support and patience as we all navigate this next national lockdown.


Finally, a big 'thank you' to all of the staff who have 'gone the extra mile' and continue to do so to keep everyone safe and secure, and make our school a happy island amidst an ocean of uncertainty.


Yours Sincerely,


Rob Bothma