School Closure Guidance on Maintaining Educational Provision

20th March 2020

Dear Parents

School Closure Guidance on Maintaining Educational Provision

In the early hours of this morning the Government issued updated guidance on provision for children whose families are key workers and those who may be vulnerable.  This is the link to the guidance:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/closure-of-educational-settings-information-for-parents-and-carers

Schools are being askedto open to provide care for a limited number of children, but this is not a statutory requirement.  The Government has asked parents to keep their children at home wherever possible and ask schools to remain open only for those children who absolutely need to attend.  All expectations regarding educational provision have been lifted, it will be about care not education.

It is important to stress that the ‘fewer children making the journey to school and the fewer children in educational settings, the lower the risk that the virus can spread and infect vulnerable individuals in wider society. Vulnerable children include those that are supported by social care, those with safeguarding needs and those with EHCP plans.

The following principles should be followed by all of us to ensure the safety of ourselves and our families:

1. If it is at all possible for children to be at home, then they should be.

2. If a child needs specialist support, is vulnerable or has a parent who is a critical worker, then provision will be available to them.

3. Parents should not rely upon those who are advised to be in the stringent social distancing category, such as grandparents, friends, or family members with underlying conditions for childcare.  

4. Parents should also do everything they can to ensure children are not mixing socially in a way that can continue to spread the virus.  They should observe the same social distancing as adults.

Although school will be open, it will be with a skeleton staff and children will be in a mixed age group setting.  As a Headteacher, it is my duty to ensure the safety of the children and staff in these difficult times. Staff will need to put their own families first, as we all need to at this time.  It is important to reiterate that I will decide whether it is safe to open the school and this will be reviewed in consultation with the governing body.

If, after following all of the guidance, you still believe that your child should be in school, we would ask that you put this in an email today to office@hook-inf.hants.sch.uk, with clear reasons why they cannot be kept safely at home. 

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your support and understanding during these extremely uncertain times. Please keep your families safe and well and continue to follow the government guidance on self-isolationhousehold isolation and social distancing.

Kind Regards

M D Walker

Mrs M Walker

Headteacher