End of Term Letter to Parents
09 Jul 2021
Dear Parents/ Carers,
Here we are at the end of a year which has seen unprecedented challenges for students, staff and parents.
I would like to thank you for your support, patience and acceptance of all of the changes that have been implemented to ensure the young people have continued to learn and develop over the year.
We have seen during this year some truly amazing work from students and staff reflecting our core values of Respect, Resilience and Responsibility. As staff and students faced multiple periods of self-isolation, live lessons, lateral flow testing, the cancellation of exams and Teacher Assessed Grades, we have seen a willingness and sheer determination from everyone to do their absolute best. It has been a privilege to see our students work through this year and overcome and tackle head on the challenges they have been faced with.
This letter contains a lot of information. However, this is the current picture, and may be subject to change depending on developments over the summer. I will write to you again in mid-August, when we are nearer the start of term, with specific plans about start dates to the term for each year group and any other organisational details or safety measures required in school. As Leicestershire schools break up for summer this week, earlier than most of the country, we do not yet have precise details for the start of term to share.
All secondary schools have been asked to set up our test centres once more so that students should receive two on-site lateral flow device tests before they return in the autumn term. It is likely schools will have to stagger the return of students across the first week to manage this. Students should then continue to test twice weekly at home until the end of September when this will be reviewed.
From the start of the autumn term, students will no longer be required to self-isolate if they are a close contact of a positive COVID-19 case. Instead, children will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace, informed they are a close contact and advised to take a PCR test. Schools will no longer be expected to track and trace and send close contacts home.
At the start of term, face coverings will no longer be advised for students, staff and visitors either in classrooms or in communal areas. Public health might advise the school to reintroduce face coverings temporarily if they deem there to be an outbreak.
Good hygiene for everyone will be practised and reinforced with students. There will continue to be hand sanitisers in corridors and classroom walls for students to use and the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach continues to be very important. We will continue to maintain appropriate cleaning regimes, particularly focusing on frequently touched surfaces. We will continue to keep occupied spaces well ventilated balancing the need for increased ventilation while maintaining a comfortable temperature for learning.
Students or staff should not come into school if they have symptoms, have had a positive test result or other reasons requiring them to stay at home due to the risk of them passing on COVID-19.
SUMMER BREAK - COVID 19 PROTOCOLS OVER THE HOLIDAY
If your child has coronavirus symptoms (or similar), you should book a test immediately (https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test) or by calling 119.
If symptoms began within 48 hours of 4pm on Friday 9th July and a positive test result is received then you MUST contact us on this specific email address firstname.lastname@example.org to alert us quickly. This is because your child may have been infectious whilst in school.
Members of our leadership team will then track and trace close contacts from lessons and inform you by text if your child needs to self-isolate. Parents must inform NHS Track and Trace of social contacts.
Parents DO NOT need to inform us of any cases of COVID where symptoms begin after 4pm on Sunday 11th July.
SUMMER BREAK - LATERAL FLOW TESTING
Thank you for all your efforts with the Lateral Flow Testing, it has been a huge help in maintaining the safety of our students during this time.
Testing is suspended over the holidays so there is no expectation you continue to test and record results. However, I would urge you to continue to do so for your own safety. If you require tests for the holiday period, please let us know.
Thank you for your considerable support this year and patience at the end of what has been such a very different year for us all. I wish you all a safe, relaxing, and hopefully sunny summer.