Key Worker Spaces AND Home Learning Survey - PLEASE READ

Key Worker Spaces AND Home Learning Survey - PLEASE READ

Dear Parents/Carers,

Thank you so much for your patience and for bearing with us through all the changes. 

Following the latest announcements and clarification around the government guidance with regard to keyworker provisions, I would like to take this opportunity to explain the difficulties we are facing with the current allocation of places and the actions we are now planning to take.   

The rate of transmission across Kingston and surrounding boroughs remains high, and coupled with the concerns around the increased rate of transmission of the new strain, this results in an increased risk for all children and staff on site. Sadly, as a school community, we were forced to close 5 class bubbles last term, including the whole of nursery (128 children), as well as having had members of staff who have become extremely ill and experience the loss of a family member from COVID. To put this further into context, we had 13 children in school in March 2020 (first lockdown), compared to our current provision which now has 66 children. This is an increase of 407% although the rate of infection is higher now than in March.

The keyworker provision is an essential service and should only be accessed by children of front line critical workers whose work is critical to the COVID response, who are not able to work from home, and where there is no one at home to safely care for them. The places offered for vulnerable children will not be affected as we have personally identified that these children will need support in school. If you have any questions around whether your child has been offered a place under this criteria, please contact the school office.

We will therefore be reviewing the status of all children currently accessing the keyworker provision this week, and making the difficult decision to revoke some of our previous offers to any families with ‘1 keyworker parent’ status where there is an adult working from home who can safely care for their children at home. This is not something that we take lightly and we understand the frustration this brings about, but we ask that you bear with us and support our efforts to work in line with the government’s aim of reducing the rate of infection, and to keep our essential keyworker ‘bubbles’ open for as long as possible. 

We appreciate that you may prefer to have your child in school. This would also be our preference. However, we are asking that you support us in keeping the group sizes as small as possible. This is proving difficult in Years 1 and 2 in particular where the group size has become large. We are therefore asking parents to seriously consider whether they need to access the place, and we will be contacting families with one parent/adult at home to review their offer this week. If we have not contacted you and you feel that although you are a keyworker, you would be able to care for your child safely at home, please do contact us and let us know. 

Our priority is that the quality of the home learning offer remains high for all children. Please click here to share your views on the home learning provision so far. Although the school-based provision offers direct teaching, this will be a very different setting to what your child is used to, as this is covered by different teaching staff each day. This is to allow teachers enough time to support those at home as much as possible. Please speak to us if you need any support accessing the home learning. 

The decision to go into National lockdown has been thrust upon us all, and we will endeavour to make the best of the situation for all our children, whilst keeping the children and staff in school as safe as possible. 

As always, we thank you for your community spirit and support of the school, especially at this very difficult time.

Best wishes,

Mrs S Yay-Walker, Headteacher