September 2020 Arrangements
All secondary year groups across the academy will be returning from Thursday 3rd September. This means that every year group will be able to attend, every day. This is vital for childrens’ education and wellbeing and is something that we know will be welcomed across the school community.
There is lots of information on this page and we urge you to read its contents carefully and bookmark it for future reference. Information will be updated as required.
Following the publication of the Department for Education’s (DFE) guidance for reopening schools, we are now finalising our risk assessment so that we can re-open for everyone in line with the government’s and scientists’ advice. Key to this will be ensuring that everyone in school follows excellent hygiene practices and that we are careful about the number of different people that students come into contact with at school.
This will mean a number of important changes to how the school runs next term. In particular:
- When secondary students return to school they will remain within their year group 'bubble' in order to avoid any non-essential mixing of year groups. Year groups will be separated within the school wherever possible so that students have access to a minimal number of classrooms and use of communal areas is strictly controlled, whilst still being able to make use of specialist teaching spaces where appropriate;
- Arrivals, break times, lunchtimes and end of school will be staggered to minimise the interaction between year groups. Details of arrival and departure times specific to year groups are included further down this page.;
- All areas of the school will receive more frequent cleaning and there will be hand sanitiser available throughout the building. We will continue to encourage students to wash their hands regularly and promote the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach for any sneezes or coughs;
- Sport and Physical Education will predominantly take place out of doors and contact sports will not be played. There will be no external sports fixtures with other schools or any participation in wider sporting activities;
- On days when students have a PE lesson they must come to school dressed in their PE kits and remain in these throughout the day.
- Pupils must bring their own items of equipment to school as sharing of items will not be allowed. It is very important that you ensure your child has all of the equipment that they require, namely: school bag (appropriate for everyday school use), pencil case (ideally a clear case for use during any exams), pens (blue, black and green), HB pencil (we recommend a 2B pencil for drawing), ruler (300mm recommended), eraser, colouring pencils, highlighters, protractor, scientific calculator (we recommend the Casio Fx-83Gt Plus Scientific Calculator;
- Extra-curricular clubs (including Breakfast Club and Homework Club) and other out of school activities will not be taking place initially. This will be reviewed after a period of 2 weeks;
- The library will also not be open to students at the start of the school year. This is in order to ensure that there is no sharing of books between students. Again, this will be reviewed after a period of 2 weeks.
- Students will only be able to access the Welfare and SEND areas of the building if they have an appointment with a member of staff. In these instances students will always be collected from their Bubble.
By making these changes, we will be able to follow the scientific guidance to ensure students are safe within the school.
We know that all students will require some degree of catch up after the disruption of the past few months. It is therefore essential that every student attends every day from the beginning of term so that we can quickly return to normal curriculum content.
Please note that attendance will be required at school and will be monitored as it has been in the past. Unauthorised absence will be treated as such and followed up accordingly. Further details regarding procedures relating to students displaying symptoms of Covid-19 are included later on this page.
Over the summer we will be finalising the timetable for each year group and it is our expectation that a full curriculum will be offered to all students although not all science lessons will take place in science laboratories.
We know that students thrive best when they have routine, consistency and stability around them. We will therefore be doing everything we can to ensure that, wherever possible, school life is as close to what they are used to as possible. Thus, all the academy’s existing policies and expectations on issues such as behaviour, attendance, homework and uniform will be in place as normal with updates as required to reflect adherence to safety and hygiene measures.
Arrangements For Arrival and Departure
As of September the academy’s main gates will be closed to all vehicles except staff and deliveries. Parents who need to access the site to drop students off who have mobility issues will still, of course, be allowed to do this. To this end please ensure that you carefully consider the logistics for dropping-off and collecting your child.
Students in our Sixth Form will not be permitted to bring their own vehicles onto the academy site.
When travelling to school we request that, wherever possible, students travel with other children in their year group bubble and practice social distancing. If they are travelling on public transport, they will be required to wear a mask.
In order to meet the requirements of our Covid-19 Risk Assessment we are staggering the arrival and departure times for students as well as the points used to access and exit the academy site. Whilst appreciating that this aspect of our Covid-19 Risk Assessment may pose challenges to some families we must stress that this is non-negotiable.
The arrival and departure times, as well as entry and exit points, for students in different year groups are shown below.
Year 7 Arrival and Departure Information
Year 8 Arrival and Departure Information
Year 9 Arrival and Departure Information
Year 10 Arrival and Departure Information
Year 11 Arrival and Departure Information
Year 12 and 13 Arrival and Departure Information
Hamiltons Bus Service
The situation regarding the bus to KBA provided by Hamiltons is that this service will operate from September providing that government guidance relating to use of school bus services does not change.
Our advice is to book a place for your child(ren) on this service if you wish to use it as the service cannot run if too few places are reserved.
Students whose parents opt to pay for this service wil be allocated a seat on the bus and this will be the seat they must use for every journey to and from the academy.
Students will be expected to wear a face mask on the bus and will not be allowed to travel if they do not comply with this.
Details regarding pick-up and drop-off points can be found on the relevant page of our website. Click here to access this page.
Please be aware that a separate Risk Assessment will be in place covering the use of the Hamiltons bus service.
Students displaying symptoms of Covid-19
The government’s scientists have set out what will happen if any student or member of staff displays symptoms of COVID-19. Firstly, it is essential that everyone – students, parents and staff – continues to follow the NHS guidance and that they do not come into school if they are experiencing any symptoms.
We ask every parent to keep any child displaying symptoms of COVID-19 at home and immediately inform the school via our Student Absence line: 01536 515644 ext 116. Likewise, if any member of your household tests positive for COVID-19, please keep your child at home and inform us as soon as possible.
If a student becomes unwell at school with a high fever, new continuous cough or has a loss of, or change in, their normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia), they will be sent home. We will arrange for them to be looked after safely, separately from others, until they can be collected. They will be expected to self-isolate for at least 7 days and arrange to have a COVID-19 test.
Should we experience a confirmed case of COVID-19 within our school community, we will work closely with our local health protection team to ensure the situation is managed quickly and effectively. Using NHS Test and Trace data, they will advise us on what next steps – if any – we will need to take as a school. We will be putting in place stringent control measures as per the DfE’s guidance in order to minimise the need for larger groups of children to self-isolate should there be a positive case within school.
In the event of any large number of students having to self-isolate or in the event of a local lockdown that means we are required to close the school, we will immediately revert to the online learning that has been working well this term. We very much hope that we do not need to return to any form of lockdown but, if we do, we are confident that we will be able to continue with all students’ learning from home. Once again, the support of parents in ensuring children access these resources will be vital.
Educational Trips and Visits
At this time we are not planning for any educational trips or visits to take place during the coming academic year.
Our expectations regarding uniform remain the same and we ask for your support in ensuring that your child comes to school in full uniform each day, remembering that they should wear their PE kit on days when they have PE timetabled.
The ordering system for school uniform is now open to all students who will be returning in Years 8-11. However, our Covid-19 Risk Assessment does not allow for any sizing or trying on of uniform to take place so please only order if you know which size you require. In most cases this may just be a size up from your last order. Once your order has been placed and picked, you will receive a text giving you times that it will be available to collect over the summer holidays.
If any part of the uniform ordered does not fit, please email email@example.com and Kelly will arrange a time with you for this to be returned. We can only accept returns if items are in the same condition they were sent home in. We cannot accept returns if items are damaged in any way. Please avoid trying on items whilst there are any strong smells in the house, i.e. cooking, as this will then damage the items.
Sixth Form Dress Code
Our expectations regarding the dress code for Sixth Form students remain the same and we ask for your support in ensuring that your child comes to school in appropriate business dress each day, remembering that they should wear their PE kit on days when they have PE timetabled.
If you have any queries regarding the dress code for Sixth Form students please email our Assistant Principal (Head of Sixth Form) Mrs Rao : firstname.lastname@example.org
Parents of students who are joining Year 7 have received separate communications regarding uniform requirements for September.
Finally, I know that some students will feel apprehensive about returning to school after such a long time away. This is completely understandable and is something that we expect will be more widespread than one might think. We will therefore be taking particular steps to ensure that our pastoral support for each student allows for this and provides time and space for any worries or concerns to be addressed so that each student is able to enjoy being back at school.
Thank you for your patience and understanding over the past few months. Everyone at the academy is looking forward to welcoming our students back. We know that there is a great deal to do and that the year ahead may still be subject to some interruptions. But we are entirely focused on making sure that in every lesson, every day, every student continues to learn and thrive.
I will be scheduling a Virtual Town Hall Meeting for all parents at 7:00pm on Tuesday 1st September. This will clarify procedures and changes to any policies and I would appreciate you making your attendance at this meeting a priority.