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Coronavirus Update – school closure to most pupils

Thursday 19th March 2020

ST BOTOLPH’S C OF E PRIMARY SCHOOL

 19th March 2020

Dear Parents and Carers,

Coronavirus update – school closure to most pupils

Following revised Government policy, we have now been instructed to close the school to almost all children after this Friday, until further notice. If you wish to read the statement from the Secretary of State for Education, Gavin Williamson, it can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/schools-colleges-and-early-years-settings-to-close

We will do all that we can to stay open for the children of families of key workers. We have been informed that this is where both parents are key workers or that the key worker is a single parent.  We are awaiting definitive guidance on what constitutes ‘key workers’.  For now, our working definition is that key workers include NHS staff, teachers, police officers and PCSOs, prison officers, probation staff, armed forces, social workers, firefighters and workers in essential logistics.  We will provide a definitive definition when it becomes available. If you believe you are a key worker and your occupation does not fall within this list, please contact us as soon as possible.

We will also remain open for children with specific identified needs. If your child falls under this category we will contact you directly.

For both groups of children detailed above, the school will be open from 8:45am until 3:05pm each day, up to and including 1st April.

If you have been identified as a key worker and intend to send your child(ren) to school next week, please contact the school by 2.00pm tomorrow by telephone (01474 365737), email (office@st-botolphs.kent.sch.uk) or by coming into the school office.  Would you please also provide updated contact details, ie places of work and contact numbers, as well as any dietary requirements / allergies that your child has; we will be providing a morning snack and lunch for all students who remain in school.  Children in school will access the on-line educational provision offered to all other pupils.

If your child is entitled to free school meals via pupil premium funding, a packed lunch will be available for collection between 12.00pm and 1.00pm each school day until 1st April, although your child will not be permitted to attend school.  If you wish to access this provision, please advise us by 2.00pm tomorrow (Friday 20th March), either by telephone (01474 365737), email (office@st-botolphs.kent.sch.uk) or by coming into the school office. Beyond this date, we are expecting the Government to have introduced a national voucher system and will await specific guidance.

All children not identified in the groups above will need to stay at home, so we ask that you do not send your child into school from Monday onwards.  Please remember that this is a national closure, so we are not alone in this situation.  We will re-open fully as soon as we can and, in the meantime, will provide regular updates via our school website (www.st-botolphs.kent.sch.uk), Seesaw and by email (please inform us as soon as possible if you change your email address).

For the majority of our children who will now be at home, I can assure you that their learning is important to us.  We will continue to support your child in their learning, through the provision of educational material via Seesaw.  A separate letter will be sent explaining this in more detail (please check Seesaw tonight).   If your child is unable to access e-learning, please let us know either  by telephone (01474 365737), email (office@st-botolphs.kent.sch.uk) or by coming into the school office

This current guidance could change at any moment and we very much appreciate your continued patience and support as we deal with this ever-changing situation. We appreciate that this latest news will have a major impact on you and your family and will continue to keep in touch with updates as they develop.  Please be assured that the wellbeing of our school community is always our highest priority.

Yours sincerely

Mrs A Chitty

Head Teacher

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