Community Primary School
Important Information For Parents and Carers to Keep All the Family Safe as Schools Open to Wider Groups
I am writing to inform you about the arrangements for your child’s return to school in light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the recent Government announcement that schools would now be allowed to open to more children, Calderdale LA this week now saying that it is safer to do so. Our Nursery and Reception children have been invited to return next Monday 22nd June.
We are living in unprecedented and very challenging times and I am sure, like many other parents, both you and your child will have some anxiety about returning to school which is completely understandable in the current situation. However, please be assured that as a school we are following the Government’s guidance and have received advice from the Council to ensure your child will be as safe as possible upon their return. The LA inspection of our Risk Assessment and facilities on Tuesday 2nd June was glowing in its praise. It is important to put everything into perspective and reassure your child that they will be safe upon their return. Only 3 of the people who have died from COVID-19 in England and Wales were children of primary school age.
It is important to be aware that some children may transmit the virus to others, even without symptoms. It is therefore important that you understand the symptoms of coronavirus, your own personal risk and what to do if you or a family member gets symptoms or is advised to self-isolate.
The symptoms of COVID-19 are continuous cough, fever and loss or change in sense of smell or taste. If anyone in your household has symptoms of COVID-19 you should all stay at home and immediately arrange for the person to be tested. Visit www.nhs.uk/coronavirus/ to arrange a test. If you are contacted by NHS Test and Trace service and told you or your household member has been in contact with someone with COVID-19, you should follow their advice to self-isolate to protect yourself and others. Please let school know if your child is staying at home because someone in your household has symptoms or they are identified as a contact.
The people at risk from being more seriously affected from COVID-19 are older people, those with underlying health condition and pregnant women. People aged 70 and over account for 83% of deaths from COVID-19 and 90% of people who have died had an underlying health condition. People from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Groups and those living in deprived areas are also at increased risk of being more seriously affected by COVID-19. This is likely to be due to higher rates of underlying health problems in these groups and social and economic factors that increase risk such as housing, low income and working in roles that carry a higher risk. The link below gives more information about who is at higher risk. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/people-at-higher-risk-from-coronavirus/whos-at-higher-risk-from-coronavirus/
The Local Authority has a statutory duty under the Health and Safety at Work Act (1974) for the safety of staff and for your child and we have completed risk assessments and followed all the Government advice for the school environment. However if you have not done so already please can you also ensure that the school is made aware of any significant underlying health condition(s) that your child may have as I will need to discuss those risks with you and take any necessary advice accordingly.
I also have moral duty to ensure your safety as a parent as well as those in your most immediate household who may become inadvertently affected. In light of this, I have provided this information from the Local Authority in order for you to assess your own personal risks before you send your child back to school and decide on what, if any, safety precautions you need to take.
Clearly it is your responsibility to decide whether it is appropriate to send your child back to school from Monday 22nd June and unfortunately this is not something I can be involved with or direct you on any further as it is a personal decision. However, if you, your family or a member of your household is in a particular risk group, I would ask that you look very carefully at the Government information online and the statistical information available which shows which groups are at an increased risk and this should allow you to make a balanced judgement. I have previously sent out a flow chart that sets out the guidance and which you may find helpful.
As I am sure you understand, the school will do everything it can to maintain a safe environment, however I cannot guarantee that your child or one of their friends will not come within the ‘social distancing’ guideline of 2 metre separation or maintain the necessary hand and respiratory hygiene whatever Government advice we follow. We are dealing with young children who will be so happy to see their friends and who will naturally want to play in the normal way. I would always advise you to ensure that your child washes their hands and face as soon as they return from school and ideally has a bath or a shower. If clothes can be washed immediately on return home then obviously this will also help to mitigate any potential risk. Children will not be asked to wear uniform which should support this.
Obviously if your child is unwell please keep them off school and please inform the school if they are displaying any COVID-19 symptoms of: high temperature or new, continuous cough or loss or change to sense of smell or taste.
Whatever your decision, there is no problem if you decide not to send your child to school at the moment. The Government is clear that no sanction will be taken against a parent who does not send their child to school at this time.
To conclude, I would suggest that if you are not in the risk groups above; you and your child have no underlying health problems; you have no one else within the family home in the risk groups or with underlying health problems, the risks to you and your child are minimal and you should not be concerned about sending your child to school at this current time. Please be assured that your child’s safety is my priority, what I am asking you to do is to consider your personal family risk and that of the wider community.
As restrictions are lifted there could be changes in the level of COVID-19 in the community so it will be important to keep the situation under review.
Please be aware if a teacher or child in your child’s class contracts the virus the Test and Trace programme will assess whether your child is classed as a contact and they may be asked to isolate for 14 days.
Finally, may I take this opportunity to wish you and your family my best wishes at this difficult time and as always we look forward to seeing you and your child in the not so distant future.
If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact me.
Safeguarding policy update
Our Safeguarding policy has now been updated with a COVID-19 addendum. You can find the policy here.
Emergency Plans - updated 30.03.20
Ash Green will continue to provide care provision for the children of key workers, and those deemed most vulnerable, for the duration of the ‘school closure’ period. This will include care through the weeks of 6th and 13th April, the scheduled Easter break. If your child, like the great majority, is not at school during the school closure period then you can always phone 01422 244613 (Option 1 for Lower Site) where calls will be answered from 7:45-3:30 but messages can also be left outside these hours. If you have any safeguarding concerns then Mr Sheppard (email@example.com) , Mr Monaghan (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Mrs Hick (email@example.com) our Designated safeguarding Leads will always be on site between the hours specified.
It is our intention to provide this care and service for the duration of this very difficult time for everyone. In the unlikely/emergency event that Ash Green had to close its provision at the Lower Site, we would provide it at the Upper Site: 01422 244613 (Option 2 for the Upper Site). In the extremely unlikely/emergency event that provision could not take place at Ash Green then we would arrange care at Whitehill MAT or Moorside Community Primary Schools. We would also send our school staff to those settings if our children had to be cared for there and would provide details of the host school’s senior leaders and Designated Safeguarding Leads. In the unlikely/emergency event that Whitehill MAT (Whitehill and Wainstalls) or Moorside Community Primary Schools had to close then we would support care for their key worker/vulnerable pupils by hosting care provision which would be supported by their staff.
Preliminary planning for this emergency planning has already taken place and is therefore in hand for this unlikely situation. Risk assessments are already in place and that all required protocols in place including:
Emergency Care Provision
We are living in unprecedented times where the whole country’s health is currently at great risk.
Please work with us to ensure that we keep our children, their families, our staff members and the wider community healthy and safe. If you or your family are already self-isolating you need to respect the 14 day period.
Government guidance issued overnight has said: If there is a parent at home who works in a profession listed below then you can take up a childcare place IF NEEDED. I must reinforce this will be childcare NOT regular school education.
If you NEED this place then phone school on 01422 244613 – option 1. Please advise if you NEED breakfast and/or after school care.
Can you also inform her if your child usually brings a packed lunch.
However, please bear in mind that government guidance remains that WHERE POSSIBLE children remain safely at home and that social distancing is the policy we should all be following.
Thank you for your co-operation and keep safe.
What is self-isolation?
The government’s current advice is that if anyone develops symptoms, everyone they live with must self-isolate. If you are at all unsure what self-isolation means for you, your child and your family, please watch the short video below.
This is an extremely difficult situation for us all and we will continue to make decisions in the best interests of our children and our school community. Thank you for your ongoing support.
Welcome to our web site which we hope you find both useful and interesting. The information contained within it is constantly updated so please visit us again.
At Ash Green Community Primary School we are here to serve our pupils, their families and the community. We make our school a centre of learning excellence for all. There is driving determination to ensure that pupils and adults in the school reach their full potential.
Children get one chance with their education and at Ash Green we want this to be the best. This is why we offer childcare facilities every morning and evening, an on-site Children's Centre, and Family Support Services that have been recognised nationally and evening activities for youngsters in Mixenden. Ofsted (November 2018) rightly identified, ‘the school is at the heart of the community.’
Ash Green regularly models outstanding practice in teaching and learning and between 2013 and 2018, we were honoured to be named a National Support School. I was also privileged to be named a National Leader of Education. We are now part of a new Teaching School Alliance led by Trinity Academy and we are proud of the work we do helping to support schools in Calderdale and beyond.
Our most recent Ofsted inspection (November 2018) confirms that Ash Green is a GOOD school. There are so many positives in the report and our wonderful children attract huge praise: ‘Pupils thrive at Ash Green. [They] enjoy their learning, display positive attitudes and value their education.’
You can contact me to arrange a visit, leave a comment on the website, or register your views of the school through 'Parent View' - a part of Ofsted's website. You can view Ofsted's School inspections: a guide for parents by clicking on the 'About Us' menu and the Ofsted link. You can access and download our prospectus, admissions information and all of the school's curriculum policies and schemes of work via the 'About Us' menu at the top of the page.
We very much want you to feel a part of our school community.
Important: School Reports
A reminder that tomorrow, pupils who are IN school currently will bring home their report, a Summer Learning Pack and a Transition Newsletter about their next class. They will also bring their siblings' reports and associated paperwork if their siblings are currently at home. For families where NO children are currently in school: Pupil Reports and Summer Learning Packs and Newsletters should be picked up on FRIDAY 10th July. This will be from the Main Entrance at each site. Parents/Carers of EY children (Nursery and Reception) 9:30-10. Parents/Carers of KS1 children (Year 1 and 2) 10-10.30. Parents/Carers of KS2 children (Years 3,4,5 and 6) 10:30-11:15. Obviously, when parents/carers come they can pick up the reports for all the family. If there are parents and carers who are unable to pick up on Friday, we will then make further arrangements for Monday. I am sure that the great majority of parents will be able to collect reports on Friday and staff will look forward to seeing you then.
Lower Site Year Six - Wider Reopening - Virtual Tour featuring Mr Sheppard!
Upper Site Year Six - Wider Reopening - Virtual Tour featuring Mr Sheppard!
25th June 2020
Our Year 6 children are invited to return from Monday 29th June.
On Monday 29th June we will, in line with all Calderdale LA schools, be continuing to provide care for children of Key Workers and those classed as vulnerable. In accordance with Calderdale LA advice on ‘cautious wider opening’ and in line with government guidance on priority year groups, Ash Green will also be opening to all Nursery and Reception children and, from the 29th, YEAR 6 children too. This means some small changes for the Y6 children already in school and new routines for Y6 children coming back. It also means slightly changed routines for Year 5 children already in school. Year 6 will be the last year group that can return in a full time capacity.
We can provide BREAKFAST CLUB care to children (at each site) from new ‘wider opening’ year groups but NOT After School care. If your child is returning for the first time and you need Breakfast Club please speak to Mrs Hick on 01422 244613 Option 1.
A flow chart of guidance from the LA was sent to parents by email and is on our website.
Lower Site Nursery children (Mrs King’s class) will attend from 8:45-11:30 (a.m children) and 12:30-3:15 (p.m children) The children will be in the Nursery classroom. At 8:45 the gate in use will be on Sunnybank Road (usually used for Reception Class) and there will be queuing space - if needed - marked out at 2 metre intervals by spray paint on the path towards the Nursery steps. There will also be a designated exit route to support distancing. When picking up children (11:30 and 3:15) please use the door at the back of the Nursery accessed via the car park and afternoon children should be dropped off there too at 12:30. This is to enable distancing at times when the ‘2 Year Old room’ would be picking up and dropping off.
Upper Site Nursery children (Miss Sayle’s class) will attend from 8:45-11:30 (a.m children) and 12:30-3:15 (p.m children) The children will be in the Nursery classroom. At 8:45 and 3:15 the gate in use will be on Clough Lane and there will be queuing space - if needed - marked out at 2 metre intervals by spray paint on the path in the Early Years playground. There will also be a designated exit route to support distancing. When picking up children at 11:30 and dropping off children at 12:30 please use the gate from Brow Bottom Lane as normal.
RECEPTION AND YEAR 6 CLASSES AND Y1/2, Y3/4, Y5 Key worker/vulnerable children groups.’
For children in Reception and Year 6 all the Key Worker/Vulnerable children groups from Year 1 to Year 5, the school day will start at 9:00 a.m. and finish at 3:00 p.m. (identified pupils have individual plans agreed as well as a small number of pupils with an EHCP).
For those children, Gates will open at 8:55 a.m. and only ONE parent/carer can escort a child to school, if they cannot walk on their own. Children will be met OUTSIDE the school building and details are specified below. Gates will reopen at 2:55 p.m. and children will be brought out to parents in designated areas. This is to protect you, your children and the staff. School staff will be there to meet and greet and return children at the beginning and end of the day which will ease children into school and also reduce the need for queues and gatherings. Parents and carers should not enter the building unless by prior appointment. Contractors visiting site will also be by prior arrangement and if possible outside school hours.
RECEPTION AND YEAR 6
For Lower Site Reception (Mrs Beaumont’s class) they will be using the reception classroom (and Year 1 classroom if numbers determine that), the gate in use will be on Sunnybank Road (usually used for Reception Class) and there will be queuing space - if needed - marked out at 2 metre intervals by spray paint on the path towards the building. There will also be a designated exit route to support distancing.
For Upper Site Reception (Mrs McHugh’s class) they will be using the Year 1 classroom and Year 2 classroom, the gate in use will be on Brow Bottom Lane- next to the portacabin- and there will be queuing space - if needed - marked out at 2 metre intervals by spray paint on the path towards the building to the slope where staff will meet children. There will also be a designated exit route to support distancing across the KS1 playground and out on to Clough Lane.
For Lower Site Year 6 (Mrs Crowther’s class) they will be using the Lower Site Year 6 classroom and Year 5 classroom, the gate in use will be on Sunnybank Road (the traditional KS2 entrance opposite Holy Nativity Church) and there will be queuing space - if needed - marked out at 2 metre intervals by spray paint on the path towards the building. There will also be a designated exit route to support distancing
For Upper Site Year 6 (Miss Taylor’s class) they will be using the Upper Site Year 6 classroom and Year 5 classroom, the gate in use will be on Brow Bottom Lane (next to the large container storage unit in the staff car park) and there will be queuing space - if needed - marked out at 2 metre intervals by spray paint on the path towards the building. Parents and children should take the path behind the kitchen into the KS2 playground, where staff will meet and greet children and the exit will be the same way back out as the path is very wide. Children will be brought out at 3:00 for any parents who attend.
Year 6 children can, of course, come to school and go home without parents/carers if required. A virtual tour of entrances and exits will be posted on the website on Friday 26th.
Vulnerable Children/Key Worker Children Groups
For children in Year 1 and 2 they will continue to use the year 2 classroom at the Lower Site, the gate in use will be on Ash Tree Road (the pedestrian path next to the staff car park) and there will be queuing space - if needed - marked out at 2 metre intervals by spray paint on the path towards the building stopping at the top of the steps into school. There will also be a designated exit route through the car park to support distancing.
For children in Year 3 and 4 they will continue to use the year 3 classroom at the Lower Site, the gate in use will be on Sunnybank Road (the traditional KS2 entrance opposite Holy Nativity Church) and there will be queuing space - if needed - marked out at 2 metre intervals by spray paint on the path towards the building into the playground. There will also be a designated exit route to support distancing.
For children in Year 5 they will now use the Maths set classroom at the Lower Site, the gate in use will still be on Sunnybank Road (the traditional KS2 entrance opposite Holy Nativity Church) and there will be queuing space - if needed - marked out at 2 metre intervals by spray paint towards the building into the playground. Year 5 children will now enter through the playground with entrance through the gate at the top of the football court. The children have been shown this. There will also be a designated exit route to support distancing.
The children have been split into these small groups to support distancing but also so that experts in each age range can teach the children. Each group will have a Teacher and Teaching Assistant as well as any 1:1 Support for the most vulnerable children. Staff from each site will work with the children and the children will be taught from Monday to Friday each week by the same staff team to support restricting potential spread of Covid 19. Activities can not be as they were if schools were opening as usual but the children will work through aspects of ‘home learning’, take part in different activities in class, participate in some outdoor learning and have a timetabled day in the ICT suite to protect against cross contamination.
The children will not ‘mix groups’. They will remain with their group from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. for their education, care, play and lunch. Each group will have their own designated toilets and hand washing facilities. This is to support the ‘bubble’ theory of guarding against the spread of illness.
We have ensured that in every room there will be additional resources to support hand washing and sanitizing. Classes have been set up in line with World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines on distancing and whilst sadly this will feel different to the children it is a necessity. Children from Y1 to Y6 will be given personal stationery packs to prevent sharing of resources.
Each group will have a different playground for exercise but we will not be able to use the existing play equipment in order that we protect children’s health by avoiding cross-contamination. Children should NOT bring toys, games or books to school.
Hygiene within school will be pristine. Cleaning rotas have been amended so that cleaning staff will be on site throughout the school day to continually clean toilets, door panels, sink areas etc. Doors through school will be propped open to minimize touching of handles and surfaces. Movement through school will be minimal but children will always walk on the left to ensure a ‘one-way system’ is in place.
The children will come to the Dining Hall at staggered times to support distancing. Our usual high standards of food hygiene will be in place and additional cleaning of the area is timetabled each day. Children will sit within their ‘class groups’ but at the distances recommended by W.H.O. A school lunch will only be available for all children on Universal Infant Free School Meals, children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2. This will be an individual ‘packed lunch’ to keep the highest standards of hygiene and reduce the risk of any transmission of any illness. All Nursery and KS2 children should bring a packed lunch from home and we will continue to order Free School Meal vouchers on a weekly basis for our families eligible.
PPE resources are in place in every room that will be used and available for all staff. Staff will NOT wear PPE for regular activities - that is not the guidelines - but will have access for when/if necessary.
In the very unlikely event of a child or staff member becoming ill with symptoms of Covid 19 then school will advise on arranging tests. If a child or staff member was sent home with these symptoms then LA advice is that the whole group would remain at home for 14 days or until confirmed that the individual had tested negative. We would ensure that all were informed.
In this very unlikely scenario, we have designated areas for the individual to be looked after in and then to be picked up from. Again, we hope that never has to be used but all resources and systems are in place to support that eventuality.
A Risk Assessment has been produced in line with Local Authority guidance. If you would like to see this, please request a copy from the school office.
Thank you for your ongoing support. If you have any questions then please ring us on 01422 244613 option 1 so we can support any queries you may have.
Parents will be able to apply for their child’s Secondary School place from Thursday 18 June 2020 - please see attached letter regarding the application process as well as the online admissions leaflet.
EXCITING LEARNING UPDATE!!
The staff at Ash Green are really missing the pupils! We hope that you are all keeping safe and well during these unprecedented times.
Here is a little message from us to you!