COVID-19 School Re-opening FAQs
Information Regarding the Opening of
Ray Lodge Primary School/Farnham Green Primary School
What do we know about the risks of coronavirus spreading in schools and early years?
How do I know the school is going to be clean?
We have increased our number of cleaners and they will continue to clean the school each morning and evening. At break and lunch time cleaners will now clean high-traffic areas such as toilets, handrails and keyboards, classroom surfaces throughout the day. Along with other extra sanitation products, we have purchased additional lidded bins for each classroom and these will be emptied at break time, lunch time and at the end of each day. Each classroom will have additional cleaning materials such as wipes should the adult feel a mid-session clean is necessary. All staff have been trained on hygiene awareness.
All windows and doors will be opened at 7 am each day. Doors will be propped open to reduce contact with door handles.
How will you ensure increased safety?
Staff give regular reminders on when and how to wash hands. Staff currently supervise and insist on handwashing at key points of the day and this will continue. Hand washing is non-negotiable when entering the classroom; before and after leaving the classroom; after using the toilet; before breaks; at the end of breaks; before lunchtime and at the end of day. In every classroom there is a sink and soap dispensers throughout the school. If your child is sensitive to the soap, you may wish them to bring their own soap, moisturiser or hand sanitiser – please contact the school prior to September. Staff will remind children not to touch their eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands. Children will be expected to wash/sanitise their hands-on entry to the school and prior to leaving.
Children will be reminded to cover their mouth and nose with a bent elbow, or use a tissue, when coughing or sneezing. If children sneeze or cough, they must wash their hands and use wipes to clean any equipment before handling again. There are posters around the school to remind pupils of expectations also.
What arrangements will be in place if a child or adult is unwell/showing symptoms of fever/cough?
All staff are aware of Check and trace and we urge all parents to also be aware of the NHS Check and Trace Service.
If a child is unwell or needs First Aid, the Medical Room is not in use for non-Covid related sickness to reduce transmission. Instead staff will call the School Office, or if outside, an adult will go to the School Office to alert a First Aider. First Aiders will have available full PPE for when they are administering first aid. If the child or adult has suspected symptoms of the virus they will be isolated in the Medical Room until they go home. The family will need to have a test and self-isolate. If the test is positive, Public Health England will be notified and the school will follow their guidance on next steps. A deep, through clean of the school will be conducted.
We have supplies of PPE for first aiders and any staff coming into close contact with pupils. We have sanitiser, gloves, aprons, masks and eye protection available for any staff who wish to use PPE. As well as our own 2 month supply of PPE, Redbridge council have established a warehouse of extra PPE if needed by schools.
Does my child need to wear a uniform?
Yes. We would like all children to wear school uniform each day. Both staff and children should trim nails short, remove rings, bracelets and watches. Arms should be bare below the elbow and long hair tied up.
What will happen if I don’t send my children back to school?
The Government’s guidance for parents makes clear that parents are expected to send their child to school. School is the best place for children to learn and for their mental wellbeing to have social interactions with their peers and teachers. Non-attendance will be marked as absence. If a child has said they will be attending and then are ill, they should inform the School Office via email or telephone in line with the school procedure.
What will the arrangements for the start and end of the day be?
Start of the day
Children and their parents are expected to try and maintain social distancing from those from other households while travelling to and from school. Children in years 5 and 6 should be encouraged to walk to and from school on their own or with an adult from their household. If adults do bring children to school, only one parent should bring them and queue 2m apart along the path outside of school.
We plan to introduce a staggered start to minimise children and parents congregating around the school. It is important that pupils try to arrive punctually. Parents collecting a child should aim to avoid arriving at school early or staying late.
Only children will be allowed to enter the school grounds and only through the allocated entry point for each class. Children should arrive at the time allocated. Letters will be sent out before the end of the term detailing when you should bring your child to school.
Staff will be available to show the children where to go in the first few days in September.
End of the day
Please come alone as far as possible, and wait 2m apart from other people, at the time and the area outlined in your letter detailing your entry and exit points.
What happens if I arrive late to collect my child?
If your child cannot walk home and is not collected 10 minutes after their collection time, they will wait in the playground 2m apart from other people. A member of staff will, at a distance supervise any child not collected. Please ensure that you collect your child on time.
How will parents be able to ask staff questions?
Parents are expected to phone and email rather than visit. Any visit to the school must be made via an appointment. Appointments will not be made at the start and end of the day to maximise social distancing. When visiting the School Office for an appointment, parents and visitors are to use the sanitiser and should remain within the marked out box in the reception area. The reception area can only accommodate one person at a time. If someone is already in the main office, parents should wait outside where it is clearly marked.
There will not be any face-to-face meetings with teachers.
How will you ensure children social distance?
Children, and staff where possible, will only mix in a consistent group, which will be referred to as a 'mega bubble' and that ‘bubble’ will stay away from other people and year/phase groups. Brief, transitory contact, such as passing in a corridor, is considered a low risk however the school has adopted a one way system to reduce the likelihood of this further.
Each 'mega bubble' will split into year group classes with up to 30 children per group.
Are before and after school clubs possible?
A risk assessment is currently being undertaken to safely open our extended provision.
How will you help children and staff adjust?
Live zoom meetings have been held this term. When returned, teachers will explain routines and expectations. All staff will reassure children that they are safe, and we are there to keep them safe as well as teach them. We will focus on Personal, Social, Health Education and encourage open discussions around worries and feelings of being in school and away from families. We will structure the day – initially focussing on previous learning and retrieval in English and Maths in the mornings whilst ensuring our children have an increase of physical activity during the week.
What will the school do if children do not follow social distancing or otherwise breach hygiene or safety guidance?
Expectations of behaviour and rules will be clearly explained to children, along with reminders and highlighting models of good hygiene and attitude. Our Behaviour Expectations will also be shared with families. Children who, despite help and reminders, cannot follow safety guidance will have a risk assessment conducted and parents contacted.
How will we ensure safe access to fresh air outside of the classroom whilst ensuring pupils are a safe distance at break time?
We will have staggered break times and staggered PE sessions led by the teacher. The limited equipment that will be used by individuals will be thoroughly cleaned after use. Pupils will not share equipment. Children will not be allowed to play football. There will be no contact games and no celebratory contact made.
All windows and doors will be opened at 7am each day. Doors will be propped open to reduce contact with door handles.
How will my child be fed during the day?
Our caterers, ISS, are able to continue to offer school dinners. We would like as many children as possible to have a school lunch, to provide healthy meals and keep our school meal service operating in the future. The servery area has 2m markings, the tables have been spaced out across the hall to allow more space between tables. Our other school halls will also be utilised over the coming months. Children will be spaced apart and only allowed to sit at a table with other children from their mega-bubble. Tables and stools will be cleaned after each sitting. Table cloths have been removed to make cleaning easier. If you would prefer to send your child with a packed lunch, please ensure that food can be easily accessed as staff will not be able to support with the opening of packages.
Will my child need to bring their own water bottle each day?
The drinking fountains will be out of use. Every child should bring their own, named, bottle of water to be kept on their desk in the classroom. At the end of each day, water bottles must be taken home, otherwise they will be disposed of. Water at lunchtime will be provided for all children in a plastic cup that will be washed after they have used it.
How will classrooms be set up?
We have removed some furniture and desks will be in rows – no children will be facing another child and therefore lowering risk. Each child will be provided with their own school stationery (pencil cases must not be brought to school) and exercise books. These will be kept in a tray on their desk. Children will stay in the same seat each day. Children can store lunchboxes under their tables and coats on the back of their chairs. No bags or belongings from home can be brought to school.
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