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School reopens TUESDAY 17TH JANUARY.

16.01.23 Confirmation of reopening...

Dear Parents,

As promised, I can now provide an update about our current situation. It is good news!

The work to install temporary heating has gone as planned. Heaters, (and the necessary cabling), have been installed at a high level throughout school and are being run from two generators on site, one in the KS1 playground and one in the Year 3 and 4 playground. All equipment has been installed in line with health and safety guidance and generators are fenced off as required.

This means that, we will be able to reopen at Grendon on Tuesday 17th January:

• School reopens to all children and attendance is statutory.
• Gates will open at 8.40am as usual. Children will arrive between 8.40am-8.50am as usual and come straight into school through their usual doors.
• We will be giving HERO stamps for punctuality and attendance from Tuesday, with children getting their reward as usual on Friday if they have earned it.
• School will finish at 3.20pm as usual for everybody. Children will be collected from the usual places. We will use permissions previously given, for Year 6 children to walk home from Grendon by themselves if this applies.
• All timetabling and curriculum content will be delivered as usual. The only change will be that there will be no assemblies until week beginning 23rd January.
• All usual policies and processes will be back in place.
• Any before and after school clubs held at school will continue on the day and time arranged from Wednesday 18th January
• If your child usually had packed lunches from home, (before Christmas), we will expect them to bring a packed lunch again.
• If your child usually had school lunches whether paid or free, (before Christmas), we will expect them to have a school lunch again.
• Until further notice, school lunches will be a sandwich/wrap with a choice of filling, along with fruit, a yoghurt, a cake or biscuits and a drink. Our usual dietary alert card system will be in place to ensure correct choices are made.
• As stated, we will refer back to your child’s ‘normal’ lunch choice (either school meal or sandwiches from home). As normal, if you want to change lunch arrangements, please notify the school office. Any changes will take effect from Monday 23rd January because of the food ordering process. We are not able to make changes before then.

As I have referred to in previous letters, this is not an end to the work we are having on site. Work will then continue to replace our gas pipes. Gas will remain turned off until the work is completed, (hence the need for packed lunches and temporary heating). The work will be completed by Birmingham City Council’s Education Infrastructure contractors. They are well used to working on live sites and all health and safety guidance will be in place prior to work starting.

There may be some further disruption to playgrounds that children use and/or to your routes in and out of school. I will communicate this to you when I know more. Children’s learning will continue as usual. Any intrusive work will take place at weekends and out of school hours. This has already been planned into the project.

I would like to say thank you again for your support throughout this period and for the changes that you have had to make to accommodate our plans. The resilience and spirit of adventure shown by us all has been amazing and has been commented on time and time again at our host sites.

I look forward to seeing you all at Grendon on Tuesday!

Years 3, 4, 5 and 6

All children are being taught at:
Christ Church, Church of England Secondary Academy,
Daleview Road,
Yardley Wood,
B14 4HN.

All teachers and teaching assistants from Years 3, 4, 5 and 6 continue to teach their classes as normal at Christ Church. Mr Darby and Miss Jones are the Senior Leaders based on site at Christ Church full time. We have almost exclusive use of one floor of their building, including eight classrooms, three spaces for lunch, children and staff toilets, staff office space, storage space, playground space and exclusive use of one of the staircases. Our children are totally separate from Christ Church pupils for all parts of the day, including at drop off and on collection

We are to offer a packed lunch for any child that would like one. This is free to those entitled to free school meals or will need to be paid for via school money for those that normally pay for lunches. Children are able to bring packed lunches from home as usual, if you don’t want a school packed lunch.

Year 2

All of Year 2 are being taught at:
Highters Heath Primary School,
Highters Heath Lane,
Yardley Wood,
B14 4LY.

All teachers and teaching assistants continue to teach their classes as usual at Highters Heath. Miss Clarke is the Senior Leader onsite at all times.

We are to offer a packed lunch for any child that would like one. This is free for all children. Children are able to bring packed lunches from home as usual if you do not want a school packed lunch.

Reception and Year 1

It has been more difficult to locate an appropriate space for Reception and Year 1 children because of their age and the requirements of the Early Years Curriculum. As I am sure you will understand, I will not move children anywhere, unless I am sure that they are safe and that their needs can be met. We have managed to secure one Reception classroom at:

The Oaks Primary School,
Bells Lane,
Druids Heath
B14 5RY.

This will take a maximum of 30 children. This is a mixed class for some Reception and Year 1 children. Some of our Reception and Year 1 staff teach these children at The Oaks. Mrs Prendeville is the Senior Leader on site at all times.

Obviously, not all Reception and Year 1 children fit into this group. The remaining children have switched to remote learning, this consists of live lessons/meetings with Reception and Year 1 staff on Microsoft Teams, video lessons, and practical tasks set by teachers. We are able to provide laptops, exercise books and pencils for those that need them.

Information for all

Our school office at Grendon remains open, and all contact should be made in the usual methods (phone, email or in person). Please do not call any of the host schools. We have communication systems in place to contact our staff at host schools quickly, should the need arise. Our staff based at these schools may need to contact you, for example in case of illness. The number they call from is likely to come up as ‘private number’. Please look out for this and answer us during this period!

As stated, all provision above will begin on Thursday 5th January, and will hopefully only be for a couple of weeks. I will confirm when we are able to return to Grendon as soon as I can. I realise that this is a significant disruption to your usual routine. This situation is simply not one that we can control. I would ask that you work with us and with each other, offering support to ensure we get children safely to where they need to be.

Attendance remains statutory. We have worked incredibly hard to secure as much face to face provision as possible because we know this is best for you and your children. We expect all children to attend, where provision has been made for them to do so. If your child cannot attend, please call our school office in the usual way to report this. We will unauthorise absence for reasons that we do not consider to be valid. Please ensure that children arrive at the correct time, and are collected promptly at the end of the day. Our risk assessments outline a window of time to get your children safely in and out of other sites without putting additional pressure on them. CHILDREN MUST BE ON TIME TO MAKE THIS WORK! I realise that some of you may need to drop and collect children from different sites. I understand that this isn’t easy, but would ask you to work with us, family and each other to support us in continuing education for your children. Please remember that this is only likely to be for a very short period of time. Please keep all requests to collect children early or any appointments you need to make to an absolute minimum. Any request must be made through our own school office. Host schools will not release any children if we have not planned for this.

Specific information about each year group can be found on class pages.

Finally, I repeat my sincere thanks to all schools who have supported us in making these plans during school holidays and during what is a very difficult time for us. I know you will join with me in this.

Best wishes, Mrs Ridley