MHS Update 14-5-2021
It’s been a few weeks since we had a Covid update rather than a ‘blog’ as such, but this week I’m back to focussing on our pandemic response. As you know the nation is now well into the government’s roadmap out of lockdown. A lot has happened since mid-March: schools reopened, lateral flow tests began, non-essential retail opened, hospitality has restarted in perfect conjunction with a spell of cold, rainy weather.
Up until now the easing of restrictions hasn’t meant anything in terms of day to day school life, and right now we remain under the strictest set of controls we’ve had all year. However, some of this is set to change from Monday 17th May. If you’re interested then the full guidance can be seen here: Actions for schools during the coronavirus outbreak – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Perhaps the most high profile change is that from Monday the government is no longer requiring students to wear masks in lesson, nor indeed in other parts of school either. However, as I will explain below, we are taking a slightly different approach. Having reviewed our Covid risk assessment we are keen to release some restrictions whilst ensuring that we protect the continuity of education for all.
Key Risk assessment points from Monday 17th May onwards
1) Masks will no longer be required by students in lessons. They WILL be required in corridors and in the canteen when not eating/sitting down. Adults will also wear masks in communal areas and where social distancing cannot be maintained.
2) All other covid related protocols involving students will remain the same. One-way system, student zones, separate canteens, different lesson times for Yr 7 etc.
3) Staff will be required to remain at the front of their classroom and socially distant from students.
4) Additional ‘touch point’ cleaning, currently taking place approximately 8 times a day, will cease from Monday 24th May. The standard daily/twice daily cleans of all areas will continue.
Why are we being cautious on mask?
We were proud of our efforts to keep cases down before Christmas 2020, and equally proud that we have only had one case since 8th March and none at all in the last seven school weeks. This has not been the case elsewhere and I do not want to take unnecessary risks, whilst at the same time accepting that further relaxation of the rules is on the cards and will be considered by us soon. I am aware that our expectations for mask wearing represents a more cautious approach than many schools…but I am sure it is the right thing to do and stand by it. A reminder that parents can request exemptions for individual children on medical grounds if they wish; if this is the case please contact Claire.email@example.com
Let’s hope that the roadmap continues to unfold successfully and we can all continue our journey of getting back to normal.