All schools nationally were issued with advice and guidance from The Department of Education detailing the parameters for how schools should welcome all students back to school in September. Below are some of the key items to inform you of the approach that we will be taking.
Staggered end to the school day
The end of the day will be staggered, students will be dismissed as follows:
- Year 7 – 3.15pm
- Year 8 – 3.20pm
- Year 9 – 3.25pm
- Year 10 – 3.30pm
- Year 11 – 3.35pm
Travelling by bus to and from school
It is recommended that students who travel by bus to and from school should wear a face mask.
The Number 6 bus will run from the school site as per usual, students will need face masks to travel.
Please note that the school car park is closed to all parental vehicles until further notice. Parents are only permitted on site and will only be allowed entry with a prior appointment.
Arrival at the school and going to the Year group zones
There will be signs guiding students to where they need to go at the start of the day and staff will be on hand to ensure students adhere to the one way system, and answering any questions that students may have.
All students are expected to be in full school uniform
Expectations of behaviour
We have always been incredibly proud of the behaviour of our students and now, more than ever, it is important that students continue to follow the high expectations we have of them. Our behaviour policy has been amended to take account of the danger posed by Covid-19, the policy is on the school website here. As well as the Covid-19 amendments, all elements of our behaviour policy remain the same e.g. rules around the use of mobile phones.
Expectations in the classroom
We know that our students will recognise the importance of adhering to social distancing requirements at all times and our signage and staff will help to provide them with reminders to support this.
- Arrive at school and depart at the designated time.
- Wear a facemask whilst moving around the school site and in communal areas.
- Use a sanitiser to disinfect hands on entering and leaving the school and at all times before entering and leaving your designated classroom space.
- Avoid physical contact at all times.
- In their classroom, sit in their allocated place at all times.
Health and Safety Expectations
- Maintain a safe distance from others at all times.
- Not share belongings (stationery, food etc) with others. Students should bring a pen, and may bring a pencil case
- Follow all advice and instructions from staff upon entering and leaving any area
- A copy of our full risk assessment is available here.
Actions if a student shows COVID-19 symptoms
Students will be given guidance about the procedures to follow if they start to experience symptoms related to COVID-19. This will take place on their first day back and they will continue to receive regular reminders. We will also ensure that students are kept informed as new Government guidance is updated.
If a student begins to feel ill with COVID-19 related symptoms, they must immediately inform their teacher. All other students and staff present will need to continue to maintain a safe social distance. A First Aid trained member of staff, with PPE, will attend to the student in an isolated designated area and parents/carers will be called to collect the student as soon possible. All PPE will be disposed of carefully, following Government guidance.
If the student needs to cough or sneeze, this should be into a tissue which is then put into a bin. If they do not have tissues, students will be advised to cough and sneeze into the crook of their elbow.
Any areas occupied and equipment used by the student will be identified and then thoroughly cleaned and disinfected following latest guidance.
The affected student should not return to school until a test has been carried out for Covid-19 and has returned a negative result.
Students within the ‘bubble’ of the affected students, will need to go home and self-isolate for 7 days also. If no symptoms are developed, these students can return to school after 7 days. If your child is affected, a member of staff from the school will contact you about collecting your child.
Actions if there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 in school
It is vital that students do not to attend school if they display symptoms of Covid-19. If they have symptoms, they should stay at home for 14 days and arrange to be tested, they should only leave the house to attend the test or for a medical emergency.
Anyone developing symptoms whilst at school will be sent home. Students will be required to wait in a designated isolation room, away from other people until they are collected. First aiders attending to the student will wear appropriate PPE equipment.
The student should then stay at home for 14 days and arrange to be tested; they should only leave the house to attend the test or for a medical emergency.
The affected student should not return to school until a test has been carried out for COVID-19 and has returned a negative result.
Parents are encouraged to engage with track and trace at any point.
Personal protective equipment (PPE) including face coverings and face masks
We are following all the latest Government guidance carefully. The most recent guidance (published 15 December 2020) indicates that:
The government is not recommending universal use of face coverings in all schools. Schools that teach children in years 7 and above and which are in local restriction tier 1: medium alert will have the discretion to require face coverings for pupils, staff and visitors in indoor areas outside the classroom where social distancing cannot easily be maintained, such as corridors and communal areas and it has been deemed appropriate in those circumstances.
In particular, schools that teach years 7 and above may decide to recommend the wearing of face coverings for pupils, staff or visitors in communal areas outside the classroom where the layout of the schools makes it difficult to maintain social distancing when staff and pupils are moving around the premises, for example, corridors.
The guidance can be found here:
16 to 19 Additional Funding
Statement on use of funds
Total made available to St Thomas More School: £8354
We have directed these funds primarily towards supporting students in Years 12 and 13 to achieve a grade 4 or above in maths and English GCSEs. Although the funds can be used to support other subjects, we feel that the achieving of useful grades in English and maths should be a priority as so much depends in terms of future pathways on having these grades.
We would normally offer re-sit classes, but with this extra funding we have been able to offer additional small group classes and keep the numbers to an average of 4.6. The cost of this additional tutoring and the accompanying resources and revision materials is £5600.
We are very conscious of learning being disrupted and the need for high quality remote learning provision. Therefore we have also allocated some of these additional funds towards subscriptions to on-line tutoring packages at a cost of £2500. We have retained a small amount of funding to cover any additional expenses that may be incurred or to provide for any additional tutoring we may consider necessary as the students approach the resit exams in the summer term.