Returning to school in September
The latest government guidance released on 2nd July 2020 issued guidance for schools to adhere to when responding to the government's request for all schools to open to all pupils from September 2020.
At Wyvil, we look forward to welcoming the school community back fully and we are working hard to ensure that we can safely welcome every child back to school in September, while at the same time ensuring that we:
- fulfil the expectations required of us in line with DfE, PHE and government guidance.
- ensure that the safety of everyone is paramount in all our decisions.
- continue to provide a high quality, well balanced curriculum to best support our pupils in their education.
Please note that from September 2020, attendance will be mandatory for all pupils.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Public Health advice to schools that will help keep my child and school staff safe?
All schools must comply with health and safety law, which requires them to assess risks and put in place proportionate control measures. Essential measures include:
- a requirement that people who are ill stay at home
- robust hand and respiratory hygiene
- enhanced cleaning arrangements
- active engagement with NHS Test and Trace
- formal consideration of how to reduce contacts and maximise distancing between those in school, wherever possible, and minimise potential for contamination so far as is reasonably practicable
All schools have been provided with a set of actions to ‘prevent’ and ‘respond to infection’ which are summarised below:
- minimise contact with individuals who are unwell
- clean hands thoroughly and more often than usual
- ensure good respiratory hygiene - ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’
- enhanced cleaning
- minimise contact between individuals and maintain social distancing wherever possible
- where necessary, wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE)
Response to any infection:
- engage with the NHS Test and Trace process
- manage confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) amongst the school community
- contain any outbreak by following local health protection team advice
At Wyvil we will be doing all we can to prevent infection by maintaining phase ‘bubbles’ as far as we possibly can.
Does my child have to attend school?
Yes. The Government has stated that school attendance will be mandatory from the start of the Autumn term.
What if my child is shielding?
Shielding advice for all adults and children will pause on 1 August. Where a pupil is unable to attend school because they are complying with clinical and/or public health advice, we are able to immediately offer them access to remote education. We will require a copy of the official shielding letter issued by a medical professional which states your child’s need to shield.
What if my family is anxious about my child returning to school?
This is completely understandable. If you are concerned in any way, please contact your child’s Phase Leader to discuss those concerns so that we can offer appropriate reassurance.
How will my child travel to school?
For those pupils at Wyvil’s Resource Base for Autism who travel on Lambeth Transport, further guidance will appear here, once it is available from the transport provider.
The public bus service is running but please be aware of the latest government advice regarding the use of public transport and car sharing. If possible, children should walk or cycle to school.
Will there be staggered start and finish times?
Yes, the school will utilise all of the available entrances and have staggered arrival and finish times to ensure that ‘bubbles’ are kept separated. Detail of this will appear here once available.
What does my child do on arrival to school?
On arrival to school your child will use the designated entrance at the designated arrival time. Children must use the provided hand sanitiser on entry to the school site.
Will the school breakfast and after-school clubs be available?
For the first term there will be no provision for extended day activities. The school is considering advice and planning for a controlled way of returning to its extended day offer possibly from Term 2.
What is the school implementing that will help keep my child and school staff safe?
- We are trying to ensure that all our decisions support phase ‘bubbles’ to minimise contact between phases at all times whilst encouraging social distancing wherever possible.
- The pupils will be encouraged to avoid physically touching each other
- Allocated break and lunchtimes to maintain ‘bubbles’
- Corridors, where necessary, will have appropriate markings to indicate which direction people should walk. People must walk in single file in corridors, keeping an appropriate social distance where possible.
- In classrooms, the teacher will remain at the front of the classroom, behind tape that demarcates two metres from the children at the front of the class. The teacher will not move beyond this line for significant periods of time. Pupils will not be allowed, nor expected, to move around the classroom, apart from entering and leaving, and not without permission from an adult.
- Where possible, resources for the session will be on pupils’ desks prior to arrival.
- Shared resources will be minimised.
- There will be no free movement around the school site. If a child requires the toilet during lesson time, they must use the designated toilets where enhanced cleaning and phase ‘bubbles’ will be in effect.
Is there any social distancing in school?
- Yes. Staff will be situated in the classroom behind a 2m demarcated line as required by government
- Staff will be requested to avoid close face to face contact and minimise time spent within closer proximity to anyone
- Pupils who require additional support will receive this and PPE shall be provided to staff in certain situations in line with government guidance
- pupils will be encouraged to maintain distance and not touch staff and their peers
- We will make small adaptations to the classroom to support distancing where possible
- Pupils will be seated side by side and facing forwards
- Corridors will be single file and the direction of travel will be clear demarcated
- Assemblies will be delivered virtually, rather than collectively.
How will you ensure that the school is thoroughly sanitised?
- Staff will monitor entry to school. Every individual will sanitise their hands prior to entry.
- All pupils are requested to wash their hands thoroughly before leaving home in the morning and once they return home.
- Doors will be propped open, in line with fire requirements
- Frequently touched surfaces will be regularly cleaned
- An increased cleaning regime has been developed during the day
- Toilets will be sanitised regularly.
- Colleagues and Pupils will be encouraged not to touch their mouth, eyes and nose.
- All individuals are asked to use a tissue or elbow to cough or sneeze into and use bins for tissue waste. ‘Catch it, Bin it, Kill it.’
- Windows and doors in classrooms will be left open, as much as possible to allow ventilation.
- Pupils will use the hand sanitiser station provided on entry to each classroom during the day. This will be repeated on exit.
Can staff and pupils routinely wear PPE?
No. Government state that PPE is not required by pupils or staff and that face masks must be removed on entry to school and this must be done very carefully. Pupils and staff must not touch the front of their face covering during use or when removing them. They must use hand sanitiser immediately on arrival and dispose of temporary face coverings in a covered bin or place reusable face coverings in a plastic bag they can take home with them.
When can PPE be worn?
Staff working with pupils with complex needs and those who are working with people who are unwell will be provided with appropriate PPE to enable them to discharge their duties as required safely.
What happens if it is raining during break times?
Children should bring appropriate rainwear to school as usual. In extreme and adverse weather conditions the school shall invoke a wet break system. Classes will remain in their room during the break and will be supervised by ‘bubble’ staff.
What should my child wear?
Pupils will be expected to wear uniform according to the school policy. Normal expectations will apply. Uniforms do not need to be cleaned any more often than usual, nor do they need to be cleaned using methods which are different from normal.
Are there any changes to the curriculum?
No. We shall continue to deliver our curriculum to meet the aims of the school’s vision.
We recognise that there are some adjustments that need to be made to the curriculum to enable all children to thrive. For some we will need to focus on reconnecting them to our curriculum. We will need to consider:
- The habits pupils will need to establish for being back in school (emotional)
- The habits pupils will need for learning the subject
- The fact that we need to focus upon what is core for progress
To achieve this, we shall:
- make the right adaptations to secure the best outcomes for our pupils and reconnect them to their learning most effectively
- complement excellent teaching and learning with additional reconnecting activities
- provide enhanced reconnecting activities that focus on the well-being and mental health of the children in our care.
Will school trips be happening?
Current guidance states that domestic trips may take place. We will continually review and consider the implementation of trips in the event that guidance changes or upon completion of a robust risk assessment.
Are there any special rules for music lessons?
Yes. The guidance has a number of restrictions for us to consider when delivering music lessons. The school has temporarily removed any kind of singing from the curriculum.
Are there any special rules for PE lessons?
Yes. Government have confirmed that schools have the flexibility to decide how physical education, sport and physical activity will be provided whilst following the measures in their system of controls. Pupils will need their normal PE kit in school for PE lessons.
- keep pupils in consistent groups
- clean sports equipment thoroughly in between each use by different individual groups
- avoid contact sports
- prioritise outdoor sports where possible
- large indoor spaces will be used where we are unable to use outside spaces
Are there any special rules for handling equipment and books?
- Classroom based resources, such as books, will be used and shared within the bubble and cleaned regularly.
- Resources and text books that are shared between classes or bubbles, such as D&T, sports, art and science equipment will be cleaned frequently and meticulously and always between bubbles, or rotated to allow them to be unused for the recommended timeframe.
- Prior to and after using any specialist equipment pupils and staff will be required to sanitise their hands.
- ICT equipment will be sanitised by pupils by using specialist wipes prior to each use.
- Only essential items are permitted into school each day including: bags; lunch boxes; sun / winter hats; coats; books and PE kit.
- Teachers can still provide feedback through exercise books.
What will the school do if there is a suspected case of COVID-19?
- Staff and other adults must not come into the school if they have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms, or have tested positive in the last 7 days
- Anyone developing COVID-19 symptoms (continuous cough or a high temperature, or has a loss of, or change in, their normal sense of taste or smell), when in school shall be sent home and advised to follow the current national stay at home guidance and book a test. Other systems evident is young people that may indicate that a test is required are a rash, abdominal pain, diarrhoea and conjunctivitis.
- If a child is awaiting collection, they will be moved, if possible, to a room where they can be isolated behind a closed door, in a room with ventilation and with appropriate adult supervision if required. The adult will maintain a 2 metre distance, where possible, and wear appropriate PPE. Any members of staff who have helped someone with symptoms and any pupils who have been in close contact with them do not need to go home to self-isolate unless they develop symptoms themselves.
- Everyone must wash their hands thoroughly for 20 seconds with soap and running water or use hand sanitiser after any contact with someone who is unwell.
- Parents and staff must inform us immediately of any COVID-19 test results.
- In the event that one of our school community test positive for COVID-19 we shall contact the local health protection team as per the current guidance and await their assessment process to inform us of the school’s next steps.
What should I do if my child is unwell before school?
If your child is unwell for other reasons as opposed to COVID-19 you must report the sickness absence of your child in the usual way and send your child back to school when they are well. Our admin team remain accessible for advice and guidance if needed.
If your child is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 or a member of their household is, they should not attend site and you must report this to the school via telephone immediately. We will require evidence from ‘track and trace’ that school absence is required due to isolation.
What are the arrangements for safeguarding?
Designated Safeguarding Officers will be on site at all times, as per our usual practice here at Wyvil.
An addendum has been made to the school's Child Protection Policy, which is available on the ‘Policies’ page of the website.
CLICK HERE to be re-directed to the relevant page.
Are there any changes to the behaviour policy and procedures?
Yes. An addendum has been made to the school's Behaviour Policy, which is available on the ‘Policies’ page of the website.CLICK HERE to be re-directed to the relevant page.
What are the evacuation arrangements?
In the event of an evacuation, the procedure remains the same, vacating the building with 2 metre distancing implemented, when safe to do so, to the school’s group assembly points.
Will there be school dinners available?
Yes. The school caterers, AiP, are planning for school lunch service for those entitled to one, or who would like to buy one. Further details on this shall be issued shortly.
Pupil are requested to bring in their own re-fillable drinks bottle which is taken home each day for washing.
What happens if there is a local lockdown or my family has to isolate?
For individuals or groups of self-isolating pupils, remote education plans will be in place. Where a class, group or small number of pupils need to self-isolate, or there is a local lockdown requiring pupils to remain at home, we have the capacity to offer immediate remote education.
This guidance is subject to change and any updates will be issued accordingly.
CLICK HERE to view the School's Risk Assessment*
*Subject to change based on Government guidance