A note from Mr Bewsey
Welcome back! It has been a really wonderful couple of days, seeing our children return to school and to do it with such confidence and obvious enjoyment. I want to take this opportunity to thank you, as families, for the amazing commitment you have shown to us and to each other over the past months. I also want to thank our amazing staff who have worked so hard to ensure the school is safe and ready for the return.
The positive start to this ‘return to school’ is a testament to values we, as a school, hold so dear: that learning, laughter and love are essential for life, not just school. None of us know what the next few weeks and months hold but I am certain that, as a school community, we will work together to ensure our children continue to ‘be the best they can be’.
Take care and stay safe,
We need our whole school community to be vigilant for the symptoms of COVID-19, and to take appropriate action should someone develop them. The most common symptoms are:
- new continuous cough
- fever/high temperature
- loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste (anosmia).
It is essential that people do not attend school if symptomatic, but instead self-isolate (along with their household) and follow guidance on NHS Inform and from Test and Protect.
If, once at school, a child is considered to be displaying symptoms, we will immediately contact parents and request that the child be collected. Families should then follow the national guidance for households with possible COVID-19 infection including testing and self-isolation.
Your help please
Every day, please can you send your child to school with:
- a full water bottle
- a coat
- a healthy snack for morning break As many of you will have noted, our ‘back to school’ plans omitted to mention the different pick-up plans for Fridays which will be as follows:
- Nursery = normal pick-up points between 12.40 – 12.50pm
- P1 = collect from ‘the yard’ at 12.45pm
- P2 – 4 = collect from coloured ‘zones’ at 12.50pm
- P5-7 = arrange for pick-up outside of school after the bell at 12.50pm
- For families with children across year groups, parents will collect their youngest child first. Older siblings will gather and wait at the basketball court playground.
Ready, respectful and safe to open
As a school, we have 3 responsibilities that we ask everyone (children and adults) to abide by. We ask everyone to always be ready, always be respectful and always be safe. As we prepared for our ‘return to school’, these 3 responsibilities guided our plans and we are confident that our plans mean we were completely ready to re-open, have done so in a way that respects everyone’s needs and interests and, ensures everyone will be safe.
To provide some reassurance, we thought you’d like to know some of the new measures we have introduced:
- We are keeping children within ‘bubbles’ for the duration of the day. By keeping children solely with their groups and restricting contact with other groups, we are minimising the risk of any potential spread of infection.
- Regular handwashing is now part of the day, either with soap and water or with hand sanitiser.
- Break times and lunch times are staggered. This means each ‘bubble’ gets a set time to either eat or play in their dedicated zone.
- Whilst children don’t need to wear face masks, staff are actively encouraged to wear them at any time they are in close proximity of a child. Other PPE is worn for particular duties including administering first aid, supporting lunchtime or supervising toileting.
- One way systems have been introduced to ensure safe movement around the school, including new floor signage to keep us all going in the right direction.
Our ‘back to school’ curriculum plan
One of our core values is learning; it really matters to us. As a result of lockdown and school closure, we are aware that learning has taken many forms and been incredibly rich for many children. We are equally aware that the prolonged period of absence has impacted children in different ways.
Before the summer, we designed a unique ‘recovery curriculum’ and we are confident that this will ensure that every child will be able to reconnect with formal learning in a safe and supportive way. We intend to follow this curriculum until the October break.
For literacy, we have invested in a suite of new story books that the whole school will be exploring and unpicking at the appropriate age and stage. For maths, we have a new programme that will support our children to revisit and build on the core concepts. For Health & Wellbeing, we are working with “Skipper” who is teaching us how to be resilient, providing a range of tools to help us navigate the river of life. And finally, for our ‘topic’, once we’ve settled back to school and are comfortable with our new routines, the whole school will be going on an adventure! Each stage of the school will be heading off to faraway lands, just like the early explorers did. The BIG question is, what will they find when they go exploring?
Lockdown home learning
As a school, we were absolutely committed to providing a high-quality, equitable solution to home learning during lockdown. We hope that you found this a support.
If any children have any completed work that they would like to share with their friends, please send it in NEXT WEEK. Also, if you have any school reading books or maths resources that you borrowed during lockdown, please return them NEXT WEEK as well.
Lunches / ParentPay
Please note that ParentPay accounts are now fully activated and can be used to order school packed lunches. All new families should have received an activation letter this week. Please use ParentPay now to order lunches and, if relevant, pay for breakfast club.
As ever, if you have any questions or queries about ParentPay, just get in touch.
Dates for your diary
The next few weeks (until the October break) are still in the planning phase. As soon as we have any special dates, we’ll let you know. This includes a Parent Council meeting (online) in the very near future; date to be confirmed soon.
October half term: Friday 9th October is the last day for pupils who will return on Tuesday 20th October.
Stay in touch
It’s good to talk so please do get in touch if you have any questions or queries.
- Speak to a member of staff at the school gate each morning
- Phone the office on 01573 224264
- Email the office at email@example.com
- Visit the school website at www.edensideps.scotborders.gov.uk
- Follow us on Facebook @EdensidePS
- Follow us on Twitter @EdensidePS
- Download the new Xpressions App
We will continue to provide Friday updates, a monthly newsletter and other adhoc messages as required.