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Planning Process For Re-opening Our Schools

Dear Parent/Guardian

I wanted to write a few lines to update you and reassure you in relation to our planning process for re-opening our schools and preschools.

Firstly, I need to tell you that we are looking forward to welcoming back as many of our children as we can, but with a focus on safety! It has been a very challenging few weeks and we are desperate to be working with your children at the earliest opportunity.

As you will probably be aware, the government announced their ambition that schools would be open for pupils in Reception, Year 1, and Year 6 from 1st June ‘at the earliest’. They also announced their hope that Year 10 would get ‘some time in school’ before the end of the summer term. We are still waiting for more detail about Year 10 currently. Since this announcement, we have been working on our plans to re-open.

As I assured you a couple of days ago, we are prioritising safety above all else in our planning. We are currently working closely with each of our trust sites, preparing them to open safely. This includes many preparations including: setting out rooms to promote social distancing, increasing the number of hand sanitisers and ensuring access to these, marking out floors, preparing lunch arrangements, changing movement around buildings, rewriting the school day and timetables plans and reviewing the numbers of staff who can return safely to work.

All of this has taken time and in prioritising the safety of your children, we are moving carefully.

Next Thursday evening, the Mowbray Education Trust Board will review the risk assessment for each school to determine how many pupils can be accommodated safely. We are hopeful that we will be able to meet the demand for places for children in Years R, 1 and 6, and we will continue to provide places for the children of key workers, as we have done since schools closed on 23rd March. The Trust Board will also assess the model for Year 10 ‘time in school’, prioritising safety at this point also.

If your child is in Year R, 1 or 6, on Friday 22nd May, we will be able to confirm whether your child can come back to school because we can accommodate them safely, but we will not be able to confirm this until this date. We will also share information about what will be in place for Year 10 students.

I am so grateful to you for the ways you have supported us in these difficult times and know that you would want us to prioritise the safety of all of our children above all else.

Many thanks

Christine Stansfield
CEO of the Mowbray Education Trust