The government has published guidance to support schools in planning during the current pandemic. You can read their summary for parents here. At present schools are only open for the children of Critical Workers and Vulnerable students. When these students are in school the guidance states that schools need to minimise the points of contact that could allow infections to spread, not primarily relying on enforcing social distancing. It details a range of ways in which schools can achieve this, allowing a high degree of flexibility for schools to adapt these measures to their own context.
We have adapted the measures taken in the autumn term, to reflect the much smaller number of students on the school site. When full year groups return to school we will revert to the autumn term measures.
The following measures have been put in place and apply to all students currently using the school site:
Ensure students enter the site safely. They can enter and leave the site via the Marks Road gate only. They will not be able to enter through the Main Gate, in order to ensure a safe arrival for Baycroft pupils.
Avoid students gathering in groups outside their Year groups at the start of the day. They should not be on the school site until 8:35am. On arrival they will need to move straight to the room for their Period 1 lesson. Morning registration will take place at the 8.45 a.m., before the start of Period 1 (8.50 a.m.)
Use one-way systems to ensure areas do not become overcrowded when students do need to move.
Restrict students to a Year group ‘Zone’ at break and lunchtimes. Every student will be provided with a colour coded lanyard to identify their Year group, to ensure these ‘Zones’ can be appropriately supervised. Lunchtime timings will be staggered to ensure students can access the catering facilities more easily. Canteen food outlets will only be available at lunchtime and will be a limited ‘grab and go’ menu of hot food to ensure students can be quickly served. Food must be pre-ordered from the canteen before Period 1.
Stagger Key Stage 3 and 4 dismissal times at the end of the day. Years 7 and 10 will dismissed at 3.05 p.m. and Years 8,9 and 11 at 3.10 p.m. to make leaving the site easier.
In addition, we will implement robust hygiene measures to minimise the risk of any spread of infection, including:
All lessons ending with a 5 minute ‘clean down and tidy up’ routine, supported by all necessary hygiene products.
A rolling cleaning programme in place across the school during the day.
A full clean down at the end of each day and use of an electrostatic sanitisation program for further protection. You can see a video explaining how we are using this program by clicking here
Changes made to the layout of teaching rooms to ensure they comply with the guidance.
Students will need to bring and use their own equipment, and not share this with others or be able to borrow them from teachers. Our expectations on this are unchanged, all students are expected to have a pencil case with them containing pens (blue or black), pencils, ruler (15cm or 30cm), rubber, sharpener, compass and protractor. Highlighters are optional but useful to have. Calculators are also optional but advisable for KS3. They are essential for KS4 and can be purchased from the Maths department if necessary.
Hand sanitisers will be available in every room and these will be routinely used by staff and students. Students may also find it useful to carry their own hand sanitiser. Alcohol-free hand sanitiser is also available, please let us know if your child requires this.
If a child in school has Covid-19 symptoms, they will have to be taken home straight away, and staff waiting with them will have to wear protective equipment. Please ensure we have up to date emergency contact details for your child, and contact school reception if there have been any changes. We have a small number of testing kits to give to parents where it will be difficult for them to access a testing site. Students must not attend school if they have any Covid-19 symptoms. More information from the NHS on symptoms can be found here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/symptoms/
All of these measures are supported by a Risk Assessment, which has been approved by School Governors and is available here. This will be reviewed regularly to ensure it is working for staff and students, and of course may need to change in response to any revisions to government guidance. These measures are all temporary, and need to be in place whilst the government guidance remains in force. We do not have any date for how long this will be, but will keep parents updated as soon as we are aware of any changes.
Face coverings are mandatory in communal areas of secondary schools.
At Crofton, students have been using face coverings since early September in many areas around the school and this has been very successful. Students are expected to wear face coverings at all times outside of classrooms unless eating or drinking.
All students need to bring a face covering with them, and a plastic bag to hygienically store them when not in use. Hand sanitiser continues to be provided in all classrooms and around the school site. However, given the need to sanitise hands when putting on and removing face coverings, it will be beneficial for all students to carry their own hand sanitiser.
Face coverings must be used appropriately, covering the nose and mouth. They can be plain or patterned but must not display any offensive images or designs. Scarves and bandanas will not be appropriate as they do not fit securely around the side of the face and are harder to store hygienically when not in use. A small number of disposable masks are available to give to students without face coverings, but we hope and expect that all students will bring their own. Parents will be charged for the cost of providing disposable masks if students regularly fail to bring their own. It would be useful for students to carry a second ‘spare’ face covering so that if one is lost or damaged a replacement is immediately to hand for them.
We continue to ask that students do not wear face coverings in lessons due to the negative impact this will have on communication. Should you wish your child to wear a face covering during lessons, please contact your child’s Head of Year so this can be discussed and appropriately planned for.
You should also contact your child’s Head of Year if you believe your child qualifies for exemption from wearing a face covering. Exemption might apply to those who cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability, or if speaking to or providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading, clear sound or facial expression to communicate.
We expect all students to be in full school uniform. Details on uniform can be found on the school website here. Please note government guidance states “Uniforms do not need to be cleaned any more often than usual, or in any different way to normal due to coronavirus”. If you have any questions about uniform, please contact your child’s tutor.
The only exception is for PE where different arrangements are required to facilitate safe use of changing rooms. On days where students have PE Periods 1 & 2 they will be permitted to come into school in their PE kit. They must be in full Crofton PE kit, this will be monitored by the PE team. Students will then change into their normal uniform when the lesson is complete. If students have PE Period 5 they will be allowed to leave school in their PE kit.
We will of course keep these safety measures under constant review to ensure they are effective, and may also need to respond to any changes in government guidance. Should we need to make any significant adjustments, we will inform parents and students as soon as possible.