Letters to Parents
Alton Close Primary September Re-opening Letter 23-07-20
Beech Avenue Primary September Re-opening Letter 23-07-20
Secondary September Re-opening Letter 23-07-20
Swindon Academy is following the advice of Public Health England (PHE) which can be found on the PHE website: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public
The school has issued guidelines to students and staff on frequent hand washing for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. Students are encouraged to wash their hands; before leaving home - on arrival at school - after using the toilet - after breaks and sporting activities - before preparing food - before eating any food, including snacks - before leaving school. Children and staff are being encouraged to avoid touching their eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands, cover their cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in a bin.
We are also ensuring that soap dispensers are topped up and there is an on-going supply of paper towels. In addition, our housekeeping team are carrying out daily sanitising of all door handles, bannisters and handrails.
The Department for Education has launched a a new helpline to answer questions about COVID-19 related to education. Staff, parents and young people can contact the helpline as follows:
Phone: 0800 046 8687 (Opening hours: 8am to 6pm- Monday to Friday)
Coronavirus (Covid-19): Frequently Asked Questions
We have put together a list of frequently asked questions to help parents through the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19).
Will schools close?
School will be closing on friday 20th March to most students. However, the school will provide a skeleton provision for looking after the chidlren of keyworkers and our most vulerable children.
If schools close, how long will the closure be for?
It is very hard to say. We will follow Government advice and close for as long as needed. We will keep parents informed via our website.
My child only has a slight cough or fever. Is it OK for them to come to school?
It is important that everyone follows Government advice and that your child stays at home if they have the symptoms listed at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ This is in the best interests of the child as well as the school community.
Will school closure affect my child’s attendance record?
No. If a pupil is self-isolating or practising social distancing, it will not impact their attendance. We will look at other reasons for absence on a case by case basis.
I’ve heard that exams are going to be cancelled / delayed. Is that true?
In England and in Wales, all exams in May and June have been cancelled, inclusing GCSEs and A-levels as well as England's primary school national curriculum tests, Known as SATs. However, teachers will be providing students with work to complete at home. See question below.
Mr Williamson, Secretary of State for Education, has said "we will not go ahead with assessments or exams and that we will not be publishing performance tables for this academic year".
Mr Williamson has also said "we will work with the sector and Ofqual (the exams watchdog) to ensure children get the qualifications that they need".
How will my child continue learning if the school is closed?
As a parent, the easiest way that you could support your child is by making sure that they have access to a computer and a quiet space to learn. This will enable them to access online materials and emails from their teachers so that they can continue their learning as best as possible in the given circumstances. This does not need to be an expensive device; anything with internet access should be sufficient. This week, we will be passing many resources to pupils so that they can continue their learning at home if the school were to close. We will be making further information available on our website on a subject by subject basis in due course; please continue to check our website regularly.
My child is very worried about coronavirus. Who can they speak to?
Many members of the school community are available for additional support. Children should speak to their College Manager or any senior member of staff.
What is the school doing to keep pupils safe?
We have increased the amount of cleaning that takes place during the school day, particularly in areas that have high contact for students. All visitors are able to use hand sanitiser when they arrive. We have also organised assemblies to promote good hygiene habits and we ask parents support us in this.
Are trips still going on?
No. We have cancelled all trips up to the Easter holiday and Primary Phase trips until the end of May. If you have already paid for the trip, we are working with the relevant companies to getting a refund. We will update you in due course when we have morning information. We are following DfE guidance regarding trips. We will inform parents if any trip is cancelled.
What can I do as a parent?
Please speak to your child about the coronavirus and reiterate the key messages we have covered in assemblies about staying safe. They are:
- Additional hand washing, especially before eating and after using toilets, for at least 20 seconds.
- Always coughing / sneezing into a tissue and disposing of it in a bin immediately.
- Avoid touching their face, and especially their eyes, nose and mouth.
- Avoid contact with others by not shaking hands, etc.
- Don’t share drinks, bottles or plates.
If I don’t have a computer at home, how can I help my child continue their learning?
Your child will already have some resources with them which they can use. Many of the online learning can take place on a smartphone or via an app as well that pupils will be able to download. We will provide more details in due course.
We are due to go on holiday over Easter. Should we still go?
You should check the advice given to you by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office about traveling abroad. If you travel against their advice, you may be required to keep your child at home when they return.
How long will this last for?
It’s very hard to say, but it is likely disruption will last for many weeks and maybe months. Please continue to check our website regularly.
Where can I get more information?
There is more information on the official Government webpages below: