Dear Parents and Carers
As you will be aware the number of positive cases has increased significantly nationally and in the North West in particular. In the light of this it is perhaps unsurprising that we have had a number of positive tests confirmed over the last few weeks. Reassuringly, we have had many more negative test results but we cannot be complacent and need to continue to closely follow the safety measures we have put in place.
On each occasion when there is a positive test result confirmed we contact Public Health who have advised us that each case must be explored individually before deciding on the response. We have acted on their advice and because of the limited numbers identified have been able to contact the families of children affected initially by phone but subsequently with a letter advising about self-isolation and when the child can return.
Occasionally social media posts have created anxiety amongst some parents that they have not been contacted even though there has been a positive test is in their child’s year group. Again, Public Health only advise self-isolation if it has been a close contact rather than the fact they were in the same bubble. Public health have advised us that it should be very rare that any school needs to send whole year group bubbles home.
Separately, there are also some pupils and staff who have been advised by Public Health to self-isolate due to close contact with symptomatic people or people who have tested positive but the contact was outside of school. However, there has also some occasional confusion when a third party, other than Public Health Track and Trace, has contacted someone advising that the person has had some contact with a person who has now tested positive and that the person should self-isolate. Public Health have advised us that people should not be self-isolating based on this third party advice.
I have also sent the latest NHS guidance regarding Track and Trace, separately.
Uniform and expectations
As you will be aware the appearance of our pupils is a great credit to you and our college, and it is often commented on positively within the local community. We have recognised that some people will have found some logistical difficulties in acquiring elements of uniform with some reporting delays in school shoes being delivered for the start of term but confident that they would arrive within days. Consequently we have not undertaken our formal Monday monitoring whilst these issues were resolved.
We are confident that those outstanding issues will now be resolved and so will start our Monday monitoring next week. Can I ask for your continued support in ensuring that your child is wearing their full uniform and has all their equipment, including having their St Mary’s bag and planner with them.
Up to date Medical Information
Currently a number of pupils are telling us that they are unable to wear face coverings for medical reasons but we have no record of that information.
Similarly, we would never want to see a children be embarrassed if a child needs to use the toilet during lessons due to a particular medical condition. We do provide a pass in these circumstances for the child to discreetly show their teacher. As you might imagine, we discourage children form going the toilet in lessons if at all possible so having this medical information would also be very helpful.
In summary, can I ask that you update us if your child’s medical information has changed regarding an exemption from wearing a face covering or their need for a toilet pass.
Ready Respectful Safe
Hopefully if you ask your child what the three key words are that encapsulated our approach to securing good behaviour they will tell you that they are Ready, Respectful and Safe.
This is something we will be embedding and linked to this is the recognition of pupils meeting these expectations in and out of lessons. This includes the use of recognition boards in classes, Classcharts points and for some Hot Chocolate Friday with the Headteacher. We want our pupils to feel that it is good behaviour that brings the attention and reward in our college and will share more of how we will be doing this over time.
Hopefully you will enjoy your weekend together as a family.
Mr A Boyle