St Helen's Primary School

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Latest Information - COVID-19

Wednesday 1st July 2020 - Letter from Mrs Bradley


 

Friday 5th June - Wider Re-Opening Videos and Information.

The following videos have been produced to support parents and pupils returning to school, so that they can do so safely and so that pupils understand what they re returning too.

Arrival and Collection of Pupils

 

Classrooms for Returning Pupils

 

 

Sunday 31st May - Update from Mrs Bradley

31st May 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

Hope you are all well and staying safe in the ease of lockdown.

We have had a number of queries regarding the return of pupils back to school from Monday 1st June. Please note that in my previous correspondence I outlined that St. Helen’s would not be re-opening until at least the 8th June 2020. This decision was taken alongside the Governing Body and Hartlepool Local Authority.

At this moment in time we are working towards a potential re-opening on the 8th June 2020, in a phased manner. My apologies for not being in contact sooner but we have been extremely busy within school preparing for a potential re-open, implementing the recommended safety measures and remodelling classroom areas and the wider school building. If the re-open goes ahead on the 8th June please see below the intended plan to admit pupils from the identified year groups outlined by the Government.

 

8th June 2020 – 12th June 2020 Year 6 pupils will attend school on a part time basis. (Morning)

15th June 2020 – 19th June 2020 Year 6 pupils will be able to attend school full time up until 17th July 2020

22nd June 2020 – 26th June 2020 Year 1 pupils will attend school on a part time basis. (Morning)

29th June 2020 – 3rd July 2020 Year 1 pupils will be able to attend school full time up until 17th July 2020

6th July 2020 – 10th July 2020 Reception pupils will attend school on a part time basis. (Morning)

13th July 2020 – 17th July 2020 Reception pupils will be able to attend school full time up until 17th July 2020

 

Please note: We are unable to re-admit Nursery pupils or 2 Year old provision at this stage due to space capacity and staffing.

For those parents/carers who have expressed that they would like their child to return if they belong to the identified year groups of Year 6, Year 1 and Reception, school will be in touch by the middle of next week. We will be furnishing parents/carers with a guidance booklet that will explain clearly procedures around return and the changes that have been made within school to ensure we are in line with Government guidance. For example: Children have been placed into a ‘bubble’ as recommended by the Government and I am sure you have heard many members of Government speak about these ‘bubbles’ in the daily briefings. School has also had to ensure that children are dropped off and collected in a staggered manner to avoid cross over of pupils/families and therefore the more detailed booklet that parents/carers will receive will outline all these procedures.

For those pupils that are to remain at home school have been in consultation with the Governing Body and other schools across Hartlepool with regards a ‘learning platform’ that will allow teachers to correspond more easily with pupils whom remain at home. We will also be in touch with parents/carers about this hopefully at the end of next week – we are just waiting on some GDPR aspects to be formalised. I do know that the ‘learning platform’ may not be accessible for all, due to internet/device issues and school will still provide alternatives for those families.

Although, I have outlined the above with regards returning to school please be aware that this could change. I, the Governing Body and the Local Authority have to be assured, as best as we can, that it is safe to begin the reopening of school and I am sure that you will all support this premise. If you do have any

questions/queries with regards the above then please use the dedicated leadership email: leadership@sthelensschool.org.uk or alternatively ring school tomorrow. (01429 267038)

As always, stay safe and take care.

Yours sincerely

Carole Bradley

Headteacher

 

 

Monday 18th May - Update from Mrs Bradley

Dear Parents/Carers,

Hope you are all well and safe.

I am writing to update you all with regards the Government announcement on Sunday 10th May 2020 around the potential partial reopening of schools from the 1st June 2020, for Year 6, Year 1, Reception, Nursery children as well as those children of key workers and those categorised as vulnerable. As you will already be aware Hartlepool Local Authority alongside schools took the decision to not reopen on the 1st June and this is linked to the local ‘R’ rate being considerably close to 1.

As you will all appreciate the Government announcement has meant that a number of discussions across the week have taken place with all schools across Hartlepool, inclusive of our Local Authority. Throughout these discussions the guidance that Government has provided for schools has been taken into account at all levels. We have been discussing and deciding how best to implement any phased re-opening of school in order to ensure that all pupils, staff and families are safe. As Headteacher I am not able to give any parent/carer a 100% guarantee that your child will be safe from contracting the virus. However, I can assure you all that we will implement the requirements and guidance that Government have outlined for all schools in the best way we can.

In line with the Government guidelines this will mean that unfortunately children, upon return, will be taught in different classrooms with not all of their friends and may not have their class teacher teaching them. This is linked to the fact that we have to implement the 2 metre social distancing as far as we are able, recognising that, particularly for young children, this is not always possible. The classroom sizes at St. Helen’s Primary School only allow for 8 – 12 pupils at any one time, depending on which classroom area is used. Inevitably this will mean that multiple classrooms and areas across school have to be utilised.

Schools in Hartlepool, inclusive of St. Helen’s Primary are considering and potentially proposing to commence the phased re-opening from 8th June 2020 at the earliest, but this may be subject to change if the evidence indicates it is not safe to do so. We are planning to re-open for one year group at a time using a phased approach and more details of this will follow in the coming days. However, I can share with you that the Governing Body alongside myself have agreed that we will invite the Year 6 pupils back into school first.

School will be posting a link to ‘Survey Monkey’ on our School Facebook page and School Website page (see the link below)

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/HBC19Primaryreturn 

This survey is for those parents/carers whom have a child/children in any of the year groups identified above. It is extremely important that parents/carers complete this short survey in order to help school plan for the number of children potentially returning over the forthcoming weeks.

I know this will be a difficult decision for many of you to make and school will respect any decisions that are made. We do know that no parent/carer will be ‘fined’ for non-attendance at this time. I do have to point out that it is only pupils from the identified year groups at this point and no siblings will be included. Although, I fully appreciate this may prove extremely difficult for many of you there is no room for negotiation, as school must follow the strict guidance set out by the Government.

I truly hope this outlines the first steps St. Helen’s intends to take for you all and I absolutely know and appreciate I will not have covered many aspects or indeed the many questions you may have in this initial letter. However, I will be in contact frequently over the next few days to inform parents further around safety measures in school and expectations for return.

I think we are all united in that, school will always keep the safety of all at the heart of our decisions and fully appreciate that introducing children safely into school during a global pandemic must be done with extreme care.

Once again thank you all for your continued support throughout and please stay safe as we move forward in the ease of lockdown.

Kind regards

Carole Bradley

Headteacher

 

Monday 11th May - Update from Mrs Bradley

Schools in Hartlepool are working with each other and the local authority to decide how best to implement the potential phased re-opening of schools as announced by the Government on 10th May 2020. We want to work across the town to make sure we make the right decisions that support our pupils, our families and our staff. We will announce local plans in the coming days/weeks and we ask that you bear with us whilst we work through the Government announcements. The decisions we make will always be centred around the health, safety and welfare of our pupils, families and staff.

Carole Bradley

Headteacher 

 

Friday 1st May - Update from Mrs Bradley

Dear Parents/Carers,

Here we are at the end of six weeks. Once again I hope this letter finds you all well and safe. I am writing to you today to share some wonderful stories from our local community and to also address the growing speculation around the return to school for pupils.

I begin by sharing two wonderful stories. I’m sure lots of you will already be aware of the tremendous efforts of some of our pupils, as we have shared these good news stories via Social Media etc. However, for those of you who may not be aware here you go. Ollie Winwood, Joshua Stamper and Oliver Stamper took part in the 2.6 challenge – Ollie on his scooter and Joshua and Oliver running. Between these boys they have managed to raise a tremendous £571 pounds towards very worthy causes. Well done boys!

We also shared that Mrs Cameron has been busy raising money to purchase hand creams to donate to ‘Miles for Men’. A huge well done from all at St. Helen’s and another worthy cause.

I would like to say that there are many acts of kindness taking part in our local community and it has been humbling to hear about these. I reiterate that I am extremely proud and privileged to be part of such a wonderful community.

With regards the return of school for pupils. Over the past few weeks there has been much communication around this and a lot of speculation around dates of return. Many of you will have heard the communication from our Prime Minister last night stating that next week he intends to set out a plan for the potential return to school alongside other services. Therefore, at this point we do not know any accurate information or indeed what this may look like in terms of return or a date for when we may return.

As educators we would like nothing more than to see our corridors and classrooms filled with our wonderful pupils and their smiling faces. This is why we all became teachers. However, I will stress that as the Headteacher I would only want to see this when it is safe to do so for all, inclusive of pupils, families, extended families and staff. We have to be guided by the science and the explanations that are communicated with this.

When we closed our doors to the vast majority on 20th March 2020 I told staff and governors that it was the right decision and I stand by that. My main reason for this is when we reopen our doors to our school family I want every single one of our pupils, families and staff to walk back through those doors. Undoubtedly, families will have suffered and some sadly will have lost loved ones and we will be here ready to support. But our main aim as a community is to minimise this loss, bereavement and trauma. Therefore, the message remains the same for now, in that, the safest place to be is ‘At Home – Stay Home – Stay Safe’.

Once school receives any communication from our Local Authority or Government about a return to school and what that may look like I will be in contact with you all to keep you informed and reassured.

In the meantime please stay safe and keep looking after each other in the wonderful ways that we have already seen and experienced.

Yours sincerely

Carole Bradley

Headteacher

 

Monday 27th April - Lockdown Online Safety Advice - Cleveland Police

Cleveland Police have provided some advice on how to continue to be safe online during lockdown.

 

Monday 20th April - Update from Mrs Bradley

Dear Parents/Carers,

I hope this letter finds you all well and that you have managed to enjoy some of the sunshine over the Easter break. We are now entering our fifth week of lockdown and we know that we have at least another few weeks before the Government reviews the current lockdown again.

Although, for the vast majority of pupils school is closed, I and the staff of St. Helen’s Primary School are still very much working to support our families and we wanted you all to know that we miss you all dearly. As of tomorrow teachers have uploaded a fortnightly project for all pupils to engage in going forward. These can be found on the school website under the parents/carers – home learning section. We have thought very hard about the type of learning we provide our pupils and we feel these projects will help parents/carers focus the pupils across a fortnight. The activities teachers have set are very much linked to learning that pupils already have knowledge around or things that are appropriate in the situation of home learning.

As a school we are here to support and teachers continue to be available to support via email and please remember myself and Mr Newing have a dedicated leadership email to support our families/pupils also. We appreciate that online learning or tasks/activities do not compare to your children being in school with their friends, teachers and whole school family but we remain committed to you all and in these challenging times our school tag line of ‘Together we make a difference’ is never more true.

I want you all to remember that your children are amazing and resilient and when we do all return to school safely, your children will continue to flourish under the guidance of us all working together. Please take time to read the words below.

Please don’t stress about schoolwork, when we return, teachers will ensure your children are back on track. What we can’t fix easily is social-emotional trauma that prevents the brain from working. So right now, share your calm, share your strength and share your laughter and love with your children. No child is ahead, no child is behind. Your children are exactly where they need to be, in a loving, safe environment.

School will make available some small packs of equipment to support learning if families need them. Unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to deliver these but if you let me know that you need a pack by emailing leadership@sthelensschool.org.uk then I will prepare these and ring you to tell you when they are ready for collection.

Early Years (2yr Olds/Nursery/Reception) eyfs@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 1 year1@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 2 year2@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 3 year3@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 4 year4@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 5 year5@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 6 year6@sthelensschool.org.uk

Myself and Mr Newing are contactable through email: Leadership@sthelensschool.org.uk

Please stay safe and look after each other in these challenging, strange times. I have been amazed at all the wonderful community spirit stories I have read and this is truly what makes St. Helen’s special and makes myself and the staff extremely proud to be part of.

Yours sincerely

Carole Bradley

Headteacher

 

Monday 20th April 2020

Fortnightly Home Learning Projects 

Each fortnight staff will be uploading Year 1/2, Year 3/4 and Year 5/6 project packs to help support and guide the learning that may be going on at home whilst staying safe. The aim of the packs is not to overwhelm families, but to support you with guidance, ideas activities, links and some simple curriculum projects that can be undertaken at home that match what might have been taught in school this term. 

As always, teachers are available to contact via email (see your home learning pack) if you have any questions.

Click Here to visit the parent/home learning section of the website.

 

Thursday 9th April 2020

Government List of School Resources

The government have released a recommended list of resources for parents to access to support learning at home. 

 See the information here - Click Here.

 

Monday 6th April 2020

Free School Meals Entitlement

Please note if any parent/carer feels that they may be entitled to FSM due to a change in circumstance please complete the online FSM Form (See link below). Hartlepool Local Authority are processing these quickly and often on the same day. If you are eligible then school will be notified and we will be in touch with you with regards packed lunches/food vouchers.

http://www.hartlepool.gov.uk/claim-free-school-meals

Carole Bradley

Headteacher

 

Monday 6th April 2020

Basic Food Hampers

We hope that you are all safe and well.

We have some basic food hampers available in school for collection.

If you would like one, then please call school on 01429 267038 to be allocated a collection slot.

Thank you

Carole Bradley 

Headteacher

 

Tuesday 31st March 2020

 Free School Meals Announcement

The government has announced today an e-voucher/e-gift card scheme for pupils who are eligible for benefits-related free school meals.  All schools are awaiting further information on the scheme so that we can roll the programme out.

 The e-vouchers/e-gift cards are for term time only and we are working through the detail as we receive the information.  Our plan is to continue as we have been, offering packed lunches, until after the Easter holidays, but if we can, we will claim your e-voucher/e-gift card this week.

 For the next 3 weeks we will continue to provide FSM’s as we have been so please continue to come into your school to collect your FSM.  We will inform you of further information as soon as we have it.

Carole Bradley

Headteacher

 

 

Monday 30th March 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

Good Morning Everyone,

As we start another week without school I wanted to take this opportunity to catch up with you all. Firstly, I truly hope you and all your family are safe and well. Secondly, a huge thank you to all our parents/carers and local community that continue to support us as a school and more importantly each other as a community.

At the end of this week school would have been breaking up for the Easter break but many of you will already be aware, St. Helen’s will remain open over the Easter holidays, inclusive of the bank holidays. A huge thank you to all staff for willingly agreeing to this and forgoing part of their break. This is to ensure that those key workers on the very frontline can still attend work and help us all in the fight against COVID-19. We are all united in playing our part and following the Government guidelines to keep safe, with the main message of ‘Stay at home’.

Over what would have been the Easter break I hope that you and your family can enjoy the time together as best as you can and keep your spirits high. I hope that your child is using the ‘learning packs’ provided and remember after the Easter break teachers will be uploading online website ideas onto our school website.

We are all facing challenges and additional stress, I have no doubt. I and my staff want to make it clear that we do not want to add to this by making any work children complete at home wieldy. Parents/Carers should not worry about the time off school having a negative effect on your child’s progress. Staff know clearly where your child was in the Curriculum and how your child was progressing through it. We know that starting point when we get back to school and staff have the expertise to gradually get your child back on track.

The main advice would be to keep your child:

1. Reading daily – (A book, a magazine, a comic etc.)

2. Engaging with the online resources that teachers will post, including Spelling Shed and TimesTable Rockstars

3. Enjoy time playing games, baking, drawing etc.

Please also remember that you can communicate directly with teachers via the below email addresses.

Teachers will respond to your learning questions:

Early Years (2yr Olds/Nursery/Reception) eyfs@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 1 year1@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 2 year2@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 3 year3@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 4 year4@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 5 year5@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 6 year6@sthelensschool.org.uk

Myself and Mr Newing are contactable through email: Leadership@sthelensschool.org.uk

Stay safe everyone and remain strong as a community.

Yours Sincerely

Carole Bradley

Headteacher

 

 

Monday 23rd March 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

I hope you are all safe and well and are following the guidance given by Government.

Last week your child received a learning pack which should last them up until the Easter holidays. It is highly unlikely that school will return after the Easter break but we will keep you updated as soon as we have information.

After the Easter break teachers will be uploading e-learning onto our school website under:

  • Parents/Carers – Learning from Home – Year groups.

We will do our very best to keep providing ideas, activities and recommended websites as we move forward.

In addition to this we have also set up dedicated email addresses where parents can email teachers with ‘Learning’ questions. PLEASE NOTE these addresses are purely for learning needs and if parents/carers have other queries these should be sent to:

Leadership@sthelensschool.org.uk.

This is a dedicated email address that I and Mr Newing are responding to.

 

Class ‘Learning’ emails:

Early Years (2yr Olds/Nursery/Reception)     eyfs@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 1             year1@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 2             year2@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 3             year3@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 4             year4@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 5             year5@sthelensschool.org.uk

Year 6             year6@sthelensschool.org.uk

 

Yours Sincerely

Carole Bradley

Headteacher

Friday, 20 March 2020
 
Dear Parents/Carers,
 
It is with a heavy heart I write this letter. As you will all be aware the Government announced yesterday that all schools will close as of Friday 20th March 2020 to the vast majority of children. School will remain open to those pupils who are identified as ‘vulnerable’ and those whose parents/carers are identified as a ‘Key Worker’.
 
Both I and the staff of St. Helen’s Primary are extremely sad that as of today we may potentially not see some of our pupils again for a significant length of time and the reality may be that our Year 6 pupils may return to education as a Secondary pupil. I know that all our Year 6 pupils will continue to be successful and I and the staff are extremely proud of their hard work and commitment to learning.
 
All pupils have shown tremendous attitude over the past few days and I am very proud of each and everyone of them.
 
The most important factor moving forward is that we all remain safe and look after each other. As a school we will do our very best to meet the required expectations of school and by working together this is possible.
 
We will continue to keep you all informed of the changing situation.
 
Yours Sincerely
 
Carole Bradley
Headteacher

 

 

19th March 2020

COVID19 UPDATE - 19.3.20
 
Dear parents and guardians,
 
As per the guidance and instructions of the government, St. Helen's Primary will be closing on Friday 20th March 2020 at 5pm, until further notice to the vast majority of pupils.
 
 
As you can understand, the school is still awaiting further guidance from the government this morning on how schools are expected to function and support 'key workers' and vulnerable pupils in our school's community. Please be assured that staff in school will be working tremendously hard to ensure that you continue to receive the most recent information when it arrives. We hope to have further updates this morning.
 
As a school we would like to thank you all for your wonderful support in these extremely challenging times.

 

Carole Bradley

Headteacher