Parents and Carers
The new academic year begins for all students on Thursday, 3 September 2020.
Year 7 students should arrive at the Academy at 8:30am.
Form Time and registration will be at 8:45am; students arriving after this time will be marked as late.
Year 8 students should arrive at the Academy at 8:50am.
Form Time and registration will be at 9:00am; students arriving after this time will be marked as late.
In light of the updated Government advice, we will be making several changes to our practices to ensure the safety of our staff and students. The main changes are summarised below, please read them carefully. Students will be taken through all the changes on the first two days back where they will be with their Form Teacher for the whole day. PE kits will not be required on Thursday 3rd or Friday 4th September.
This is a constantly changing situation and if the guidance changes or things look better or worse nationally, things could change from the below. We will let you know if there are any changes.
It is the intention to form two Year Group Bubbles: Year 7 and Year 8. We are forming Year Group Bubbles so that if a student tests positive for COVID-19 or we are directed by Public Health England or NHS Track and Trace to put students into isolation it will only affect a single student bubble.
Bubbles require us to reduce the contact between students wherever possible. This includes start and end of the day, moving round the Academy, breaks and lunchtimes. We also are restricting students to areas of the school as follows.
- The Year 7 bubble will consist of the Year 7 corridor and L4L classrooms, ground floor toilets and small library.
- The Year 8 bubble will consist of the Year 8 corridor and classrooms and the first floor toilets.
- All other areas are to be considered shared spaces and will be outlined below.
As per the guidance, staff are permitted to move between bubbles but will practice social distancing between staff and students.
Arrangements for September
Quoted from the updated Government Guidance:
“It is for the governing body of a school (or the academy trust, in the case of academies) to make decisions regarding school uniform. Some schools may have relaxed their uniform policy while only certain categories of pupils were attending. We would, however, encourage all schools to return to their usual uniform policies in the autumn term. Uniform can play a valuable role in contributing to the ethos of a school and setting an appropriate tone.
Uniforms do not need to be cleaned any more often than usual, nor do they need to be cleaned using methods which are different from normal.”
In light of this, all students are expected to wear the correct Academy uniform every day in September. The Academy Uniform Policy can be found here.
- We encourage students to walk or cycle to the Academy where possible.
- All three student gates will remain open and be supervised by staff at the beginning and end of the Academy day.
- Students arriving by public transport must wear a face covering. Disposable face coverings should be placed in the yellow bins provided. Students wearing reusable face coverings may wear them in the playground if they wish.
- Students arriving by car must be dropped off at the drop-off area on the car park.
- There will be a Gate Warden in place as part of our building contract with Willmott Dixon who will help to direct traffic – please cooperate with staff instructions to ensure safety for all.
- Family members are not permitted to gather or wait at the student gates or reception. This will include not taking photos on the first day by the gate. Please wait in cars to collect students.
- Students will wait in the playground before entry to the Academy. They will line up with Form Teachers to ensure a safe and orderly entrance to the building.
- Breakfast club will not be available as Year Group Bubbles are unable to mix.
- At the end of the Academy day, students will be directed to leave the site and not gather at the gates.
For more guidance and information regarding using public transport please see this post: https://wbca.school/safer-travel-using-public-transport/
- The one-way system around the Academy will be altered to reduce the possibility of Year 7 and 8 students mixing. When entering the building from the playground:
- Year 7 will use the main doors by the gate and the staircase directly inside (when necessary).
- Year 8 will only use the entrance and staircase by the canteen.
- To reduce movement, in subjects where specialist rooms and facilities are not required (Maths, English, German), students will remain in their L4L rooms and teachers will move to them.
- Shared spaces (Science lab, Art room, Inclusion, Music Room, Canteen) will be subject to enhanced cleaning between Year Group Bubbles.
- The timetable has been adjusted slightly to make this possible.
- There will be a separate set of school equipment (eg Art, PE, Science practical equipment) for each Year Group Bubble or where this is not possible, the equipment will be cleaned between bubbles.
Assemblies and Year Group Events
- Assemblies will be delivered via Teams Live Events – students will not gather as a year group in the theatre. Large events involving all students or a whole year group will not take place until the guidance changes.
- Group drama performances will be restricted until the change of guidance. This also includes the Theatre School, Drama Club and Hippodrome-run Drama sessions.
- There will be no visits to the Leisure Centre in the first half term.
- Swimming lessons will not take place.
- PE lessons will take place in the studio or MUGA. In case of inclement weather, PE lessons will be theory based and delivered in classrooms.
- Your child must wear their PE to the Academy on the one day per week that they have PE on their timetable. This will remove the need to use the changing rooms. This is only permitted on the day that they have PE. Students may bring and wear their blazer on days that they have PE. They will be permitted to wear their blazer inside classrooms but will not be permitted to wear outdoor coats inside.
- Students will be able to undertake Music theory lessons and use instruments if they are disinfected between Year Group Bubbles.
- Wind instruments and singing lessons will not be allowed.
- Pop Choir will be cancelled until the guidance changes.
- Peripatetic (private) Music Lessons can only take place where students have their own instrument.
- Breaks and lunchtimes will be staggered so that Year Group Bubbles do not mix.
- Students must wash or sanitise their hands before break and lunchtime.
- Students can purchase food from the canteen or bring their own from home (NOTE: WE ARE A NUT FREE SCHOOL).
- Breaktime snacks served in the canteen will be limited to pre-packaged snacks.
- Hot and cold lunches will be pre-portioned in disposable containers with disposable cutlery.
- Students must queue with 1m between students, in line with the signs that will be present. They must follow all staff instructions.
- Students must clear all of their waste and dispose of in the bins provided when they have finished eating, ensuring they have not left litter or waste on the floor.
- There will be enhanced cleaning between lunch sittings.
- Students should wash or sanitise their hands after eating.
- The fire assembly points and evacuation procedure will be adjusted to account for the building work that has started and social distancing between Year Group Bubbles.
- Students will be informed of the evacuation procedures on the first day of term and a drill will be carried out.
- Students must sanitise their hands when they arrive at the Academy and as they leave each day.
- They must wash their hands before and after using the toilet.
- Students must sanitise their hands before and after lunchtimes.
- Additional hand sanitiser points will be installed throughout the Academy.
The Government have recently changed their advice on wearing face coverings in schools, following advice from the World Health Organisation. The current advice is that wearing face coverings in schools is only required in areas where a local lockdown is being enforced.
It must be noted that wearing face coverings does not reduce the requirement to socially distance from others and we will still expect staff and students to follow all the appropriate guidance on social distancing.
- All visitors to our Academies must wear a mask or face covering at all times.
- Where students wish to wear a face covering, parents must show students how to put masks on and remove masks safely.
- Students may wear appropriate face coverings in corridors, dining room, toilets and playground.
Students will not be permitted to wear face coverings in classrooms; it is not effective to wear a mask for hours and hours each day. We are putting this advice out as a may but there is no requirement, nor is it recommended for your child to have or wear a face covering other than on Public Transport. The majority of the time, moving from place to place students are moving as a single class and it is very difficult for students to not touch their face coverings.
- Students must remove face covering before entering classrooms
- Students must remove face coverings if requested to do so by any member of staff.
- Students must have appropriate storage for their masks when they are not being worn.
- Face coverings should be a plain colour with no patterns or markings. If a face covering is deemed to be inappropriate or offensive, it will be removed and a disposable mask provided as an alternative.
- Face coverings must be removed from the face when not being worn and not tucked under the chin.
- Students must wear masks on all public transport to and from the Academy.
- Parents and families must not gather at the school gates at any time.
- The number of visitors on site must be kept to a minimum and all visitors must maintain the Academy hygiene and social distancing policies at all times.
- Reception will have a maximum occupancy and we would ask you to please call in advance if looking to meet a member of staff so we can arrange a socially distant meeting area or have the meeting by phone if possible.
- Parents and families will be instructed to contact the Academy to make an appointment in advance of any meetings.
- All visitors to the academy must wear a face covering at all times.
- The Academy will be subjected to more regular cleaning throughout the day, particularly in high traffic areas such as toilets, handrails and the canteen.
- Within classrooms, students will be seated at their usual class tables. The Government guidance states for tables to be forward facing where possible but we are not able to replace the round tables in 13 classrooms as we do not have the funding. We have made adjustments wherever we can.
- Students must use their own stationery. Where possible, please provide your child with their own personal set of equipment to use in the Academy. We will ensure there is no use of shared equipment.
- Students must not share laptop devices.
- Marking of work will be completed online or within school – staff will not remove books from the Academy for marking.
- In the case of a second lockdown or a Year Group Bubble is sent home due to Public Health England or NHS advice, the Academy will resume online lessons.
If your contact details (address, phone number, email address) change over the summer period please contact the Academy so that we can update our records. It is vital that we have two contacts with accurate information for all students.