I am writing to confirm a change to our COVID procedures. Firstly, I wanted to thank our students, staff and you as parents for supporting the measures that the school has in place currently. We have had 4 cases of COVID confirmed, these have not been linked to other cases at school, meaning the transmission would have been from the community which supports the effectiveness of the measures currently in place.
Given the increase in transmission locally, the news of the national lockdown and the fact that there has been evidence of transmission across schools in areas of high COVID cases, we will make face coverings mandatory for all transitions around the school from Thursday 5th November. This means that when students enter the school site in the morning they need to don their face coverings until they are in their lessons. Students will be expected to wear their face coverings during all transitions between lessons during the day. Once students are in their outside break time zones they will be able to doff their face coverings until the bell rings to indicate that they are to move to their next lesson (face coverings are to be worn if in inside break areas and not eating or drinking). Students will also need to ensure that they have face coverings on at the end of the school day until they leave the site.
I appreciate that there will be many students exempt from wearing face coverings and if this applies to your child please send a note in with them to give to their tutor. Exempt students will be issued with a lanyard to wear. We will sympathetically enforce the use of face coverings and if a child forgets or loses their face coverings we will be able to supply one at school. All the information in this letter will be shared with our students in their PD time and I have attached a PDF of the PowerPoint to be used by our tutors for your reference.
I must stress that this is an additional measure that may help to reduce transmission; however, the most effective methods are still regular hand sanitising and maintaining distance from other students. As mentioned earlier, all of the cases at school seem to have been transmitted outside of the school environment, so please ensure that your child is following the Government lockdown instructions from Thursday as this will significantly reduce the chance of transmission, enabling all our students to continue to attend school rather than having to self-isolate.
Finally, I wanted to confirm that our reduced after school provision, including Year 11 GCSE work, will continue as planned; this will be reviewed in light of any further guidance issued to schools. If we can continue to all work together we will keep our community safe whilst ensuring that our students continue with their education in these really difficult times.