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COVID-19 Letter 12 - 12.06.20

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Please see the most recent COVID-19 letter below.

12 June 2020

Covid letter 12 

Good morning to all our parents, carers and staff,

I had hoped to spare you all another letter this week, but in the fast paced world of the Covid 19 pandemic I’m afraid that hasn’t been possible. I also feel it is important that you receive regular updates about our plans and actions as we try to take the necessary ‘baby steps’ to get more operational. This letter has been drafted with the support of the school leadership team and our lead Governors.

It has been another action packed week for the school as we attempt to ‘Creep out of Lockdown’.

On Tuesday we received a letter from Calderdale Council with the important sentence below highlighted:

“Having considered the latest evidence available, the Council is able to support a cautious extension of the opening of schools from 15 June.”

As we have indicated in previous letters this CAUTIOUS approach advocated by the Council matches our own.  It is important for the safety for all in our community that we continue to ask parents to support us by managing expectations about a wider return. If we get this wrong it could be tragic!

Our ‘Bubble offer’ has now operated for 4 days and we have been pleased in general with how it has worked. Staff have shown a genuine commitment to making this unique approach at Ravenscliffe work. ‘Physical distancing’, a better term for our students we feel than social distancing, still remains a challenge for us all. We have not yet perfected it.

On Thursday we had our first serious ‘test’ as one of our students in a Bubble with 4 other students and 4 staff started to show the symptoms of a high temperature at lunch time. We immediately had to isolate that student and then arrange for them and all the other members of their Bubble to go home immediately. Their families gave us a brilliant and immediate response. Thank you.

All 9 members of that bubble will now need to stay at home isolating until the results of the test for the student with symptoms is confirmed, hopefully over the weekend. If a clear test they will be invited back in. If not, they and their families will then have to enter a longer period of self isolation. As you can appreciate, this real life example makes the safe running of the school, in these more uncertain times, a complex affair!

I share the story just to highlight the practical challenges facing our community as we try to come out of lockdown. Until a vaccine is produced we all have to accept that there will be more instances like this in future weeks and months.

The ‘Bubble model’, which is the only way we can safely accommodate more of our community, only allows us to EVENTUALLY host around 40 students in Skircoat Green and 24 at SpringHall. With 188 students on roll it is sadly, an impossible task to accommodate everyone back into school in this still uncertain time.

Today we have increased our numbers over the next week (15 June to 19 June) from a 15 - a-day average to around 20.

On Monday 22 June, we hope to reopen SpringHall and test out our ability to run a safe provision for a small trial number of our sixth form students, with some more students being invited in from the week commencing Monday 29 June.

We have to carefully manage numbers or the safety of many more could be compromised. It is also apparent that where a student has additional medical vulnerability or need, this is still too early a time for them to come back into school.

From Monday, all our staff on CMBC transport will be required to wear a face covering (bandana) and gloves.

Passengers are not required to wear any face covering and we will be maintaining the 2m social distancing measure wherever possible, meaning we will continue to only transport 3 passengers (plus driver and passenger attendant) on our 16 seater vehicles.

As always, thank you for your support and I’ll advise if/when further changes in guidance affect our measures.

As I conclude this letter, I want to once again, thank you all for your patience. This is definitely a time of test, but you have already shown great resilience by successfully negotiating at least 83 days of lockdown since it began on 23 March.

If you read ‘Signing’ Paul’s story that we featured recently on the school Facebook page, you are reminded of how a time of test can often mould us to become a better version of ourselves.  We will keep trying to do everything we can to keep you as a family connected with Ravenscliffe.

Your son or daughter matters to us. Please remind them of that.

I hope to ‘see’ many of you in assembly on Friday at 2pm, via our Facebook page. Please take care and have a lovely weekend. With best wishes

Yours sincerely

Martin Moorman