Letter from the Principal - Covid Procedures Autumn 2020 - Thistley Hough Academy

Dear Parents/Carers
RE:Covid Procedures Autumn 2020
I am delighted to begin this letter by confirming that, at the time of writing, we have still had zero confirmed cases of Coronavirus Covid-19 in the Academy. I want to thank you again for your robust and responsible approach to the pandemic which has supported us in keeping our young people safe and healthy to date. We know that a case in the Academy is statistically inevitable over time, and we want to reassure you that our processes are in place when that time comes.
I must remind you that if your child develops a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or suffers a change in taste and/or smell, you must not send your child, or their siblings, into the Academy. We advise that you follow the Government guidance for households with a suspected case (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection), which states that you should arrange for a covid-test, and that your household should isolate accordingly. If your child develops symptoms during the Academy day, they will be isolated from their peers until we have contacted you and arranged for them to return home safely. Again, this would apply to all members of your household in the Academy.
We are still providing a small number of students, fewer than 5% of our cohort, with face coverings before entering the Academy. We understand that students may forget these from time to time, may we again ask for your support to ensure that your child has their own, plain, face covering, to bring to the Academy every day. We especially thank parents that have ensured their child’s face covering is completely plain, without logos. Government guidance is clear that these coverings should be stored in a hygienic plastic bag when not being worn, and we would urge that you remind your child to ensure that disposable/single use masks are discarded in an appropriate manner once used. This will ensure that littering within the Academy and the local area is kept to an absolute minimum.
The introduction of the “rule of six” last month provides our young people a new challenge – as their travel to and from the Academy is not exempt from this legislation. As such, parents/carers of students walking to or from the Academy in larger groups could receive Fixed Penalty Fines starting at £1000 each, increasing for repeated failures. Obviously this kind of penalty should be avoided. We ask all families to discuss who children walk to and from the Academy with, and ensure that no group of students is greater than six in number; we also ask that students do not walk to the Academy in groups that cross year-group bubbles.
As Autumnal weather moves in, we are very aware that a large number of students are arriving at the Academy considerably earlier than their official starting times:
▪ Year 7 and Year 10 students should arrive by 8.25am for an 8.30am start
▪ Year 8 and Year 9 students should arrive by 8.55am for a 9.00am start
▪ Year 11 students should arrive by 9.25am for a 9.30am start
We appreciate that there will be a small number of students who will arrive with siblings in other year groups, but even with significant capacity both in and out of the building, having large numbers of students arriving from 8:00am increases the opportunity for tranmission, which we would like to avoid.
We are also pleased to confirm that we will be introducing additional IT facilities to support students in Years 10 and 11 engaged in BTEC courses. This will lead to some changes to student timetables. We have also extended our cleaning contract, so that the additional provision throughout the day will continue into the New Year.
If you have any queries regarding our approaches to covid-security, please begin by referring to the Full Opening Risk Assessment that is available via the Policies section on our website.
Thank you, as ever, for your continued support.
Yours sincerely
Jayne Schofield
Principal
Dave Fenney
Assistant Principal – Quality of Education
Health and Safety Lead

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