20th March 2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

School provision from Monday 23rd March

During the night the government published their guidance on maintaining educational provision during the Covid 19 crisis. This guidance includes the categories of students for which provision is to be available from Monday in order to support society’s efforts to combat this terrible crisis.

Which children are eligible?

There are two broad types of student for whom provision may be made, the children of ‘key workers’ and ‘vulnerable’ children. We will be in touch as soon as possible with the parents/carers of the students who qualify as ‘vulnerable’ children with a separate communication.

Children of key workers

With regards to the children of key workers, the government guidance is very clear that If children can stay safely at home, they should, to limit the chance of the virus spreading. That is why the government has asked parents to keep their children at home, wherever possible, and asked schools to remain open only for those children who absolutely need to attend… the fewer children making the journey to school, and the fewer children in educational settings, the lower the risk that the virus can spread and infect vulnerable individuals in wider society.’ (Today’s Guidance, our bold)

It is vital for our efforts to control this disease that we all minimise social contact as much as possible. As many children as possible should stay at home.

Many of you may be wondering whether your son is old enough to stay home alone. There is no legal definition of the age at which a child is safe to stay at home alone. This is a judgement for parents to make, as you know your son and home context best. However, in case it is helpful, we would expect most students in year 9 or above to be safe at home alone, particularly considering the importance of minimising all social contact at this time. However there will be younger children who would be safe and older children who wouldn’t.

What do you need to do?

If you believe that you fall into one of the categories on the attached Appendix and you believe your child would be unsafe while you fulfil your duties during normal school hours,  you need to check with your employer that ‘based on your employer’s business continuity arrangements, your specific role is necessary for the continuation of this essential public service.’ (Today’s Guidance)

Please note that at this stage we cannot guarantee that this provision will be available on Monday for you. This is because we do not know either how much demand there will be or what our already significantly depleted staff numbers will be. We will do our utmost to help as many people as possible, even at short notice, and we will confirm the provision as soon as we possibly can.

Please note that if we are unable to provide for your son, the local authority will be liaising with other schools to find a space for your son at another centre. However this is unlikely to take effect before Thursday.

What to do next

If you believe you are eligible and would like your child to be in school from Monday, please read the attached checklist of declarations. Then email us today, before 2pm if at all possible (but don’t worry if it is later) at, giving the name and form of your son(s) in an email entitled ‘Key worker’, attaching the completed declaration form if possible, although that may follow on Monday in hard copy. We need to know how many students we may be catering for as soon as possible.

  • Please note that children in school during this period will mainly be supervised whilst they undertake the work set for all the students in their class or year on Google Classroom. When we confirm availability, we will provide more details of equipment to bring and so on.
  • Provision will be for the duration of normal school hours, 8.30am - 3.15pm.
  • Teachers and other staff will strictly maintain social distancing and students should expect to be sitting at tables 2m apart from other students.

Forgive the perhaps direct tone of this letter – we live in a troubled time and it is important that I communicate with you today as quickly as possible.

With best wishes to all our families

Ian Cooksey


Key worker categories

Key worker declaration checklist

Published on 20/03/2020

Click on links below


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