It has been the most challenging week in education that any of us has ever experienced and we have put every effort into keeping our schools functioning and to keep you informed as the issues have developed.
We are, like many of our Y11 students, absolutely devastated that they will not have the opportunity to sit their GCSEs and leave school as they normally would. There will be a mechanism by which we will be asked to submit information to Examination Boards, and students will then receive their qualifications, but we have no guidance on this at this stage. We will keep you informed when we know the process that will be used and what we have been asked to do. We will also organise events for Y11, as school leavers, once we understand the timescales for school closures.
For our Year 6 children they will not take their SATs but will transfer happily to secondary school and we will ensure that their new school has all the information required to support their transition. All other primary assessments have also been cancelled.
Based on last night’s Government announcement, we have now been instructed to close our schools to almost all children after this Friday until further notice.
As advised by the Government, we will do all we can to stay open for the children of key workers this has not yet been defined by the Government, but we believe will include the following: -
- Armed Forces in deployment
- Prison and Probation service
- Employed in the care profession
- Essential Delivery Drivers
Once the final list is published, we will update you.
In addition to this list, we have also been asked to develop a provision for the following groups:
- Vulnerable children with an EHCP
- Vulnerable children with an attached social worker
All other children will need to stay at home, and we ask that you do not send your child to school from Monday onwards.
We want to keep the number of children in school to an absolute minimum to reduce any risk of infection as much as we can. Wherever it is possible, the best option for families and our whole community is for your child to stay at home.
You must let us know as soon as possible by Friday 20th March by 12pm if you consider yourself to fall within the category of a key worker, as outlined by Government, and have no other option but to send your child to school.
Please contact your child’s school if you are eligible to be classed as a key worker using the link below:
Click this link - Ercall Wood Keyworker Form
We will manage and prioritise the provision based on personal circumstances with one of the key factors being if both parents are classed as key workers. Unfortunately, we will only accept children whose parents can prove that they are working in a key role (According to the Government directive).
We will be able to formulate plans once we have confirmed numbers and staffing available. Obviously, we do not know what the package we can offer will look like at this stage, but once we have it in place this will be sent to those parents who are eligible.
For the students whose families do not meet the criteria, we will be continuing with the planned ‘home learning’ package that has been detailed in previous communications. We expect our children to be proactive in their engagement with the programme so that they maintain routines and continue to make academic progress.
Finally, if your child feels ill and you want to know what to do next, please use the NHS 111 online https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19
As a Trust and on behalf of our schools, we cannot thank you enough for your support during this time and we want reassure you that we will work together to provide the best education and wrap around support for our families.
Dr. Gill Eatough
Date Published: 19 Mar 2020