St Thomas CE (VC) Primary School
8.30am - 4.30pm
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Our school works closely with the other schools around us to provide additional opportunities for our children. To find out about who we work with, and what we do click here...
We look forward to welcoming all our families back to school on Tuesday 8 September.
We continue to work under guidance from the government to keep all our children and staff safe. This means that, although we will be fully open, there are some changes and adaptions to the school day. All our changes are temporary, flexible and will be constantly under review. We thank you for your patience and understanding if any adaptions are made last minute!
In line with government guidance we are organising our day around class bubbles - this means that all our plans aim to keep the children within their class, limiting contact with other children across school.
Classrooms from Year 1-6 will be organised to support distancing where possible, with pupils sitting side by side in rows to minimise face to face contact. Children will be given individual equipment that they use frequently e.g. pens, pencils so that they do not share them. Please do not send any from home. We will also be increasing the amount of outdoor learning.
Start of Day
We are giving families a wider time window to arrive (8:40-9:00) and we are increasing the number of entrances we use (details to follow in early September). For our older children we are asking families to say goodbye at the gate and allow pupils to come in alone.
End of Day
We will be staggering the end of day to reduce congestion (details to follow in early September). We are asking families to meet children on the main playgrounds and not to congregate round the doors.
We are sorry that we will not be offering a breakfast club for at least the first fortnight of the autumn term – we are working on a plan to be able to restart as soon as is safely possible.
Morning breaks will be staggered so that only one year group at a time is on any yard, the yard will be clearly split into class areas.
Lunchtime has been extended for older children with all children having one hour, this is to allow for all the additional handwashing and cleaning. All year groups, apart from Reception, will be eating lunches in their classrooms. Our catering team have prepared a new temporary menu which can be easily delivered to the children. The menu will be available on the website to give the children the chance to choose in advance. All children will have an outdoor play session, staggered in a similar way to break times.
Packed lunches will be stored in classrooms; compact packed lunch boxes are preferred due to limited storage space and please bear in mind that the classrooms can get quite warm.
From September, water bottles will be sent home daily for washing. Please ensure that your child brings their bottle back to school each morning and that their name is clearly visible on both the bottle and lid.
All children are given a school water bottle when they start at St Thomas. We buy good quality, BPA free, washable bottles which are strong and resilient but they do occasionally get broken and some children chew the tops until they leak. Replacement lids are available from the school office for 50p and full bottles for £1.50.
All children will need a coat each day to allow our learning outside sessions to take place. Please avoid sending large/multiple bags to school (see notes about lunch boxes and PE bags).
For the first half term children in Reception will not need PE kits as their physical activities will be based in their outdoor area.
We will be asking children in Years 1- 6 to come to school in PE kits on designated days. This is because we are not able to offer age appropriate changing spaces for older children and it also reduces the number of bags in school which is helpful within our new classroom layouts. Trainers /pumps need to be in school EVERY day, please use a simple drawstring bag for storing these. Plain black jogging bottoms may be more appropriate than shorts as the seasons change.
We aim to begin these as soon as possible but initially they will be virtual and/or in single year groups with children spaced out.
Please be patient whilst we get safe systems up and running, please don’t expect books to be sent home in the first week or so.
To manage safe use there will be additional appropriate toilet supervision and children will be sent at specific times. There will be occasions when other bubbles are using the toilets, or they are being cleaned, when children will have to wait - this will never be for an excessive amount of time.
Please note - the reception area toilet will NOT be available for parental/children’s use at the start and end of the day.
Open Door Policy
Communication and contact with parents and families remains important to us but we need to temporarily make our open door policy virtual and electronic! We are asking parents to avoid coming to Miss Kane’s reception area at the start and end of the day, please telephone 01484 226557 or email non-urgent messages and queries to firstname.lastname@example.org
Final Details & Updates
We will be in touch with you all during the last week of the holiday with final details and any updates.
Please advise us of any changes to your mobile number or email address during the summer holiday by emailing email@example.com to ensure that we are able to contact you.