Covid-19 - latest news
As I’m sure you aware by now the London area has been placed in to a ‘high’ alert Covid category. This means that there are some changes to the guidance to schools on the use of face coverings by staff and students in indoor communal areas and corridors. From Monday staff and students will be expected to wear face coverings in these areas. There is not an expectation to wear them in the classroom if normal Covid safety procedures are taking place but should your child wish to wear one in class then of course they will be free to do so. If you’d like to read the guidance for yourself there is a link to it here.
This will be a change of practice which will take some getting used to. We do have a stock of disposable face masks for staff and students who forget to bring one in to school but from Monday can I ask you all to ensure that your child is prepared for the new guidelines. We will share this information with students in school tomorrow and, from Tuesday, will expect that all students follow the new guidance. If your son/daughter has a medical reason why they cannot wear a face covering please contact the school to let us know so that we can plan accordingly.
On another Covid related note I'm delighted to report that we were visited by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) last week for a 'spot' inspection of our Covid safety measures. I'm delighted to report that they gave us a clean bill of health and made no recommendations for improvement. The safety of students, staff and visitors remains paramount and we were pleased to receive this endorsement.
On Monday 12 October we had our first confirmed positive test this term for a member of our school community. The individual concerned is now isolating at home. Families of students who have been in close contact (within 2m for more than 15 minutes) have been contacted by letter and their child will now isolate for 14 days. As all of these students are in the year 11 cohort we have taken the decision to ask all year 11 students to remain at home for the next two weeks to enable us to provide a comprehensive programme of education online to the whole year group. This will take place using our Microsoft Teams platform which we successfully implemented during the summer lockdown. Whilst this situation is not ideal it does enable us to continue to prepare the year 11s for their GCSE examinations next summer while keeping the rest of the school open. We will of course update parents if the situation changes.
Please can I remind all parents that if a member of your household is symptomatic of Covid-19 and awaiting a test result, then you MUST NOT send your child to school until you receive confirmation of a negative result. If you are in any doubt about whether to send your child in to school please call the school on 0207 924 8310 to discuss with school staff.
Safety of students and staff is our priority. We have prepared this short video outlining some of the measures that we've put in place to keep children and staff safe. These include year groups taught in 'bubbles' to reduce contact between groups of students; changes to classroom organisation to reduce movement, remove group work and keep students 'front-facing'; reduction in the school day and the removal of break time to minimise contact between students and increased cleaning and hygiene facilities. If you have any questions or concerns please contact us. We want all of our students to be able to return to school and continue their education while feeling safe and happy. A copy of our risk assessment is available for you to read below.
In the light of new government restrictions imposed on social gatherings of six or more people it is essential that all students make their way home directly once school has finished and do not wait around in the neighbourhood for friends. Students should travel home either alone or in pairs or small groups only. Please support us by reinforcing this message at Home.
It is also important that all students are fully able to access remote learning from home both to support their normal curriculum and to be ready to switch to online learning should we need to lock down again or should any student need to isolate. If your child has any problems accessing the remote learning on Teams then please contact the IT support team on 0207 924 8310 or by email IT_helpdesk@sjbc.wandsworth.sch.uk
Sadly we've had to postpone our annual prize-giving ceremony given the restrictions in place on non-essential gatherings. We are continuing to offer after-hours, socially-distanced, individual family tours to prospective parents who are seeking a school place for September 2021. Full details can be found on our admissions page. Please do encourage friends who have children in year 6 to come along and visit the school.
SJBC Covid Risk Assessment 18.10.2020
If you would like to look at some of the materials that were shared with students and parents last year please see the list below.