Update on full opening 8th March
Dear Parents and Carers,
As I said in my email earlier this week, we are all very excited that we are able to welcome back all our pupils from Monday 8th March 2021. We are all now working hard to ensure that the school is fully ready for that date. I thought that I would take this opportunity to go over a few key points so that you are all aware of our plans.
Over the past 12 months, we have worked very hard to ensure that infection rates are kept to an absolute minimum. In fact, during that time we have only had one occasion where we have had to close a bubble due to a confirmed case. Although we must not be complacent, we have a good set of protocols that help to keep everyone as safe as possible. In addition, over 85% of our staff have now received their first dose of vaccine. This is a further layer of protection for our school community.
We will, of course, continue with the hygiene and cleaning protocols that we have used throughout the pandemic.
From 8th March, staff will be testing themselves twice a week using the lateral flow device (LFD) test provided by the government. This is a further layer of protection and will enable us to identify asymptomatic cases early.
Getting the school ready
As I am sure you will understand, during this national lockdown the school has been adapted to support those pupils who have been on site. To return the school to normal class operations requires some work that staff teams will need time for. We also need to offer training to staff on self-administrating the home LFD tests. As such, the school will be closed to pupils next Friday (5th March) in order for us to be fully ready for the Monday.
It has been fantastic to hear of the wonderful learning opportunities that have taken place during the most recent lockdown. However, as we move towards this return, remote learning will cease. As such, the last remote learning sessions will take place on Thursday 4th March 2021.
As the remote learning comes to an end, we would ask that any loaned laptops are returned to school in the week beginning 8th March. Please bring them in to the office to be dropped off. If there are any difficulties in this please contact Atul Attra on 01635 42976.
Just like prior to Christmas, we would encourage our pupils who are secondary age and above to wear masks in school corridors and communal areas where possible. We understand that this will not be appropriate for some of our pupils and as such this is discretionary.
I have updated the parent/pupil protocols and attach them below for you to read.
Review of plans and protocols
I am hopeful that over the coming months we will be able to review and ease operations at The Castle School. However, for the time being the protocols will remain in place for the safety of everyone on site. I will remain guided by the science and only change things when it is clearly safe to do so.
For now, can I thank each and every one of you for your amazing and unstinting support during this strange and challenging time. It has been hugely appreciated by all of us at The Castle School.
The Castle School