Coronavirus

Sunday 29th March 2020

Dear parents and carers,

This past week has been like no other in my memory and I hope that all members of our school community have been able to stay healthy and safe.

As requested by the government, the school will be open to provide childcare during the Easter holidays, but this will only be for children of key workers where their parents are not able to secure appropriate supervision for them, as well as children who may be vulnerable.We will be running this holiday provision just like our normal Wraparound care, so there will be no academic learning taking place.

I am sure that the past week will have presented numerous challenges for our families, not least the challenge of supporting children in completing home learning tasks whilst trying to juggle everything else. It has been lovely to see so many children enthusiastically engaging with the tasks we have set this week and our teachers have really enjoyed the wonderful Seesaw posts that children from across the school have been submitting. As the Easter holidays have begun, we won’t be posting new tasks on Seesaw until Tuesday 14th April, but children are welcome to carry on using the learning apps and websites available to them should they wish to.

For some families, finding the time to complete home learning tasks this week will have been difficult and so it is important to stress to everyone that whilst it is great if children can take part in the daily Seesaw tasks, the key focus for all of us at this time must be to ensure we stay virus-free and that we look after ourselves and our families.If you haven’t got through as much learning with your child as you would have liked this week, please don’t worry – as a school, we do not want to add to people’s worries and therefore we fully support families in doing what is right for them at this point in time.

Many families will have come across alternative home learning activities being shared online and the children who have been coming to school this week have enjoyed the Joe Wicks live workouts. Within our own school community, we have two opportunities that you might like to take a look at:

  • Kids Yoga Cornwall will be live streaming their kids yoga sessions on Facebook on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 4pm and on Saturdays at 12pm. This is free of charge and can be found at https://en-gb.facebook.com/kidsyogacornwall/
  • Jeanni Grant-Nelson, an artist and Bosvigo grandparent, has been offering online art workshops on her Facebook page. These sessions are free of charge, last about 30 minutes and are really easy to follow. All participants will need is a pencil and piece of A4 paper. https://www.facebook.com/artjeanni/

We are conscious that children may be coming to the end of the last reading books they brought home from school, so have taken out a Bug Club subscription and allocated every child a series of e-books to read/share online. Hopefully you will all have login details for this, but if you don’t please let me know.

On top of this, we have three further options to share with you:

  • Borrow box is a great FREE app which allows you to borrow books or audiobooks from the library. All you need is your library card and the app. It can be downloaded on iPads, iPhones, Android devices and Kindle Fires.
  • Every day, David Walliams is reading extracts from his World's Worst Children series. Just visit https://www.worldofdavidwalliams.com/elevenses/
  • Audible have released hundreds of free audiobooks for children of all ages. They can be accessed from virtually anywhere. On your computer, tablet, or smartphone, just navigate to stories.audible.com. Make sure you are using the latest version of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, or Edge browsers. No login, no payments and no strings attached - just good stories!

On behalf of the staff and governors at Bosvigo, I would like to wish everyone a restful and healthy Easter break. If there is any way in which we can support you and your family, please get in contact, as we are only too happy to help.


Tuesday 24th March

Bosvigo School is open and supporting the children of our critical workers. We will continue to open over the Easter Holiday. Places need to be booked on line through the SchoolGateway.

If you need to contact the school please call 07591 945238 as the office may be unmanned.


Friday 20th March

We've reached the end of what has been an eventful week and I can only say thank you to everyone for the way you have remained calm and understanding in what are both challenging and uncertain circumstances. Whilst the current situation around the coronavirus spread is distressing, the way the community has pulled together has been extremely heartening.

It has been difficult for children leaving school this week not knowing when they will return to what we know as normality, but we will do everything we can to maintain a sense of community over the coming weeks. Our distance learning will start on Monday in a simple format, but over the coming weeks we hope to become more and more creative in the ways we engage with our home learners. We have sent home learning packs home with children this afternoon, but will be out making deliveries on Monday morning to ensure everyone has what they need to continue their learning outside school.

For our Year 6 children, we have an important message: we will see you again and we will make sure you enjoy the celebration that you deserve when you leave Bosvigo as the Class of 2020 - hopefully after a few weeks of normal school life.

Those families who are entitled to free school meals may have heard in the news that support will be available in some form during this period of school closure and, whilst the government's guidance on this isn't very clear, we would like to reassure you that providing assistance to those who need it is at the top of our list of priorities and we will look to be in touch with a plan hopefully on Monday, but by Tuesday at the latest.

Today, having sent out the information regarding critical workers and vulnerable families and having received confirmation of which families meet the criteria, we have determined which children will need to come into school next week. If you did not respond to the survey earlier, but believe you meet the criteria set out and require childcare next week, please email me or contact the school office on Monday morning.

Once again, on behalf of the staff and governors, may I thank everyone in our community for being so helpful and understanding this week. Please remember that we continue to be available to help families in any way we can.

May you all have a peaceful weekend.

Chris Wallis

Headteacher

head@bosvigo.cornwall.sch.uk


Thursday 19th March

We had hoped to be able to bring you a clear explanation of which parents and carers would be part of the government's 'Key Worker' list this evening, but sadly Matt Hancock, the Health Secretary, has just announced that the list will not be published until tomorrow. The release of the Key Worker list will be crucial in advising schools and families which children will be permitted to attend school for childcare during the period of school closure and it would be wrong to speculate on the make-up of that list until it is published. As soon as the list is published, we will be in contact with parents and carers to help us identify which children may need school-based childcare from next week. Whilst for most families it will be clear whether their children will be able to access school-based childcare, for some it may not be. If you are unsure following the release of the list tomorrow, please contact the school office for advice.

We have made good progress with our home learning packs today and when children go home tomorrow, they will take a new Home Learning book with them. This book will contain a letter explaining how home learning will work, as well as information on how to access some of our key online resources. We have concentrated on offering daily Maths and English next week to get children started, but will extend our offer after the Easter holidays to cover more of the curriculum. All classes will have their home learning shared on a daily basis via Seesaw. Many families will already have the Seesaw Family app to view what their child has been up to during the school day, but in order to access and interact with our home learning tasks you will need to download the Seesaw Class app and enter a Home Learning code (which will be inside your child's new Home Learning book). Should any of this prove problematic, staff will be contactable by phone and email to provide assistance.

For families that are already self-isolating, we will aim to get your children's home learning books to you on Monday morning when some of our staff will be making deliveries. If you are able to send someone to collect your children's home learning books from the school, you are welcome to do this on Monday morning, but will need to notify the school office by phone or email so that we don't include you in our deliveries.

As previously mentioned, we will be in contact tomorrow as soon as the Key Worker list is announced. If you are able to respond to that communication by the end of the school day it will help us greatly in planning our provision for the following week.


Wednesday 18th March 2020

Following this evening's announcement from the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, that all UK schools must close due to the spread of the Coronavirus, we are writing to officially notify you that Bosvigo will be closing at the end of the day on Friday for an amount of time that has yet to be determined. This will be the case for all schools in England.

This is an extremely difficult situation which impacts all families, but the government believes that the closure of schools is necessary to ensure the safety, health and wellbeing of everyone and to prevent further spread of the coronavirus.

The Prime Minister advised that during this period of school closures children should not be left with older grandparents or relatives who may be particularly vulnerable to the Coronavirus.

Whilst the Prime Minister has said that schools will be closing on Friday, we have been asked by the government to remain open for children of key workers, as well as vulnerable children. The Prime Minister said that he would define which key worker professions would be included in this list and referred specifically to key health care / medical staff, other staff in critical public services (such as police officers and social workers) and essential professions such as delivery drivers. A clear explanation of which jobs are included in the key worker definition will be released by the government tomorrow, at which point we will be able to determine which children will be able to access school-based childcare during the period of school closure. Once we have received the definition, we will send out a survey to help us identify which parents a) are included in the government's description as key workers and b) will need childcare provision. Vulnerable children have been defined as children with an Education Health and Care Plan or children with a social worker.

As we have mentioned in previous communications, we are working on creating a home learning package that offers productive learning opportunities rather than simply time-filling activities and this will be ready for families to access from Seesaw on Monday morning. We are currently working on making sure that children have the necessary login details for different online resources and will send these details home by Friday at the latest along with some paper-based resources. For those families who are self-isolating, we will find a way to get this information to you. We would like to reassure everyone that the quality and quantity of teaching and learning will remain the same for all our children whether they are working from home or part of the school-based group.

We are aware that for some families the outbreak of the coronavirus has brought financial difficulties and in response to this we are working with a number of organisations with the aim of creating a level of food provision. We don't have a clear picture of what that looks like yet, but will be working hard over the coming days to ensure that we support families as best we can.

This is undoubtedly an uncertain and challenging time for everyone, but we would like to ensure that all our families know that we are there for them in whatever way they need us to be. Whilst the school will be closed in its normal form, we are still very much one community and we are committed to ensuring that everyone continues to feel part of that community.

With best wishes

Bosvigo School