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2 June 2020 : Letter from Head Teacher

Dear Parent/Carer

I hope that you all remain well.

As you will be aware, the school has been assessing the risk of opening up to more pupils, using the advice available from the Local Authority and the Government. Our current plans mean that we are likely to have 38 pupils from 8 June 2020, accounting for approximately 22% of our school population.  You may have read in the media over the past few days that there is some disagreement in the science community about when it would be best for schools to expand numbers.  If your child has been offered a place from Monday, 8 June, and you have any concerns, please do contact the school.

Due to the fact that each ‘Kingdom’ needs three classrooms to achieve any social distancing, it is unlikely that we will be able to open further Kingdoms this term.

For those children in school, their experience looks quite different. Obviously there are fewer children in each class, and some of the soft furnishing and equipment have been removed from rooms to reduce contamination risk.  As stated previously, the school day is now slightly shorter Mondays to Thursdays and children will finish at 12.30 pm on Fridays to allow for a deep clean.

Norse Catering, with whom we have our catering contract, is no longer able to provide a snack trolley at break times. If you wish for your child to receive a snack, please provide one for them each day, or let the school know if this is difficult for you to do.  For the next four weeks, Norse is providing packed lunches, instead of hot meals.

I would also like to take this opportunity to remind parents that there is no expectation for pupils to wear school uniform. However, we request that pupils wear clean clothes each day to help prevent contamination.

We have been asked about transport arrangements for those pupils who have been offered a place. The school contacts the Travel and Transport Department at Norfolk County Council to arrange transport, so, there is no need for parents to do so as well.

Prior to half term we have been making preparations for September. I am pleased to announce the following appointments have been made:

  • Carolyn Ellis-Gage – Head Teacher
  • John Habershon – Deputy Head Teacher
  • Fiona Webster-Lee – Assistant Head Teacher
  • Iain Mills – Senior Teacher, member of the Senior Leadership Team
  • Clare Savory – Senior Teacher, member of the Senior Leadership Team
  • Lucy Kent – Senior Teacher, Head of Primary (appointed from 1 June 2020).

We have also appointed five new teachers and we are about to embark on interviews for more teaching assistants. I am working with Mrs Ellis-Gage to ensure a smooth transition for her into Headship at the school.If you wish to contact the school this term, please either use the office@parkside.norfolk.sch.uk email address or telephone to speak to the following:

  • John Habershon – Maple, Sparrow, Blackbird, Jay, Willow
  • Fiona Webster-Lee – Beech, Holly, Rowan, Robin, Sycamore
  • Lucy Kent/Carolyn Ellis-Gage – Primary School.

We are now beginning to formulate plans for new people coming into the school in September and our leavers. We will give further details as they are confirmed. We are able to let you know that after considerable thought we have decided to postpone the Leavers’ Prom until a time when it is deemed to be safer to gather in groups.

We are also planning what our curriculum will look like when everyone is able to return. We are looking at a ‘Recovery Curriculum’, which will focus on supporting pupils’ social and emotional needs.

May I once again thank everyone for being flexible and supporting the school in its risk assessment of the situation. The staff continue to be committed and to provide the best education for all under the circumstances.

Yours faithfully

ROBERT HOLDERNESS, Head Teacher

CAROLYN ELLIS-GAGE (Mrs), Head Teacher Designate

 

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