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Important Letters

29th September 2020

 

Dear Parents/Carers

 

Please remember that in Birmingham, we are under local lockdown restrictions. This means that NO-ONE, adults or children, can visit your home or garden. If you have formed a support bubble with ONE other household because one of the households have only one adult living in it, you are then able to visit each other.

 

Children are very honest at school and tell us about their friends playing with them in their home or garden; attending birthday parties at people's homes; neighbours popping round for a cup of tea, etc. These are NOT allowed at the moment. The restrictions are making life very difficult but they have been brought in to try and control the spread of Coronavirus. If rule-breaking is reported to the police, the police can visit homes and issue fines to any adult who is breaking them.

 

Please follow these rules and be a good example to your children. To those of you who are following them, a big THANK YOU! We are doing our best to keep your children and our staff safe at school by following all of the rules that we have to follow. You must do the same. We still see parents standing together chatting in the playground. Again, this is NOT allowed. These restrictions will be in place until the spread of the virus decreases. ALL of us have a part to play in making sure that we follow the rules.

 

Thank you.

 

Mrs Brewer

Deputy Head Teacher

 

22nd September 2020

 

 

Dear Parents/Carers

 

The government has now said that family members can help with childcare. This was banned when Birmingham was put under the new restrictions last week. If someone other than you usually brings/collects your children, they can now do this as long as you let your children's teachers know. However, please be aware that 'the rule of 6' still applies. For example, a parent of 3 children who collects their own children as well as their friend's 3 children, will not be able to do this as there will be 7 in the group. (The 6 children from 2 different families plus the parent collecting them.) Babies and children are included in 'the rule of 6' so please be mindful of this. If you take children home, you are NOT allowed to let them into your house, or you go into theirs, as households are still banned from visiting other households in Birmingham. (Unless you are in a support bubble where one household only has one adult living in it.)

 

We know it is very difficult at the moment but please remember that these restrictions are in place to try and beat Coronavirus and keep us all safe.

 

Please also remember to not mix in the playground. Parents are still chatting to each other, less than 2m apart, which does not follow social distancing rules. Your children see this and are aware that some parents are ignoring the rules. As soon as a member of staff comes out, your children are safe to leave so we are asking that you leave the school premises.

 

Finally, we are aware that there have been a few parents visiting the school office. This is strictly by appointment only in exceptional circumstances. Some of these parents have said their children's hands are sore through the handwashing that is taking place and the use of hand sanitiser. Unfortunately, there is nothing we can do about this as this instruction has come through from the Department for Education, as well a global instruction about washing hands for at least 20 seconds frequently. If your children's hands are sore, then you may wish to buy them some hand cream they can use at home. Children may bring a small hand cream into school for their own use, this must be clearly labelled with their name and class. Regular handwashing and hand sanitising will continue for many months ahead and the children will get used to it, just as we all do when we visit shops, restaurants etc and have to sanitise our hands as we enter each building.

 

Thank you.

 

Mrs Edwards and Mrs Brewer

15th September 2020

 

 Dear Parents/Carers,

 

A few of you were asking questions last night about the new Rule of 6 and the Birmingham restrictions. Please find below some of the answers you wanted to know. We hope you find this useful. You may wish to visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/birmingham-sandwell-and-solihull-local-restrictions for further information. 
 

Can my child invite their friends to play in my house or garden?

  • No. From today, people in one household cannot go into the home or garden of another household under the Birmingham restrictions unless you are part of a support bubble. (A support bubble must have one household with only 1 adult living in it, eg, a single parent and children under 18 years old, or a single adult living alone.)
  • You can only have one other household in a support bubble. Eg, if you have 1 grandparent who lives alone, and a different grandparent who lives alone, you must choose which one will be in your support bubble. You cannot swap between them.
     

Can I invite by sister/brother into my home because they only live next door?

  • If either of you live with another adult, then no.  You can do this if they are the only adult in their household, or you are the only adult in your household, and you have formed a support bubble with each other.
     

Can I provide assistance or care for an elderly/vulnerable person?

  • Yes. This is allowed. Emergency care is also allowed.
     

I live in a different house to my children’s other parent. Can we both still have access to the children?

  • Yes. You are allowed to continue existing arrangements for contact between children and parents when the parents live in separate households.
     

Can we meet with friends or family in the park?

  • Yes. However, the rule of 6 still applies. Eg, if two parents and their three children go to the park, they can only meet one other person. The family of five must also make sure they stay 2m away from the person they are meeting.
  • If you are already a family of 6 or more, you cannot meet anyone else unless you have formed a support bubble. (One household only has 1 adult living in it.) This also covers meeting people in pubs, restaurants, etc. No more than 6 people are allowed unless they are part of a support bubble.
     

My friend/family member takes my children to school every day and brings them home. Can they still do this?

  • No. This is causing lots of challenges for families and we really do understand this. You can use registered childminders or nannies, but not family members.
  • Some councils are requesting that this changes. However, at the moment, the law states that family members cannot help with childcare.

 

Some of the children have asked their teachers why parents are standing in the playground/by the shelter chatting to other parents and in groups larger than six! Your children are very perceptive to what is going on around them! Please do not do this. If you wish to stay with your children until their teachers collect them, that is fine, but you MUST stay 2m away from other parents. We have also asked that only one parent collects the children so that we limit the number of parents waiting outside.

 

Finally, please ensure that you follow these new rules. They are making life very difficult for all of us and as staff, we understand this as we have family members and friends that we are not allowed to see either. However, we have had children return to school stating that they visited friends and family during lockdown and did not realise that this was not allowed. The government have now asked people to report anyone not following these new laws which, as horrible as they seem, have been put in place to try and stop Coronavirus from spreading. Please do not put your own family’s health at risk by ignoring these rules and do not risk being issued with a fine by the police if someone reports you for breaking them.

 

If we all follow the rules, however difficult we find them, we will hopefully help to stop the virus from spreading and have these restrictions lifted.

 

Thank you.

 

Yours faithfully

 

Mrs Sharon Brewer

Deputy Head Teacher

 

 

14th September 2020

 

Dear Parents/Carers,

 

Thank you for your support since children returned to school on the 3rd September. It has been very challenging considering all of the changes that have taken place. However, thank you for your efforts to bring your children to school on time, and collecting them on time. It is very much appreciated.

 

This is a reminder of the new changes that start in England today, as well as the Birmingham restrictions which start tomorrow. There are a very small number of families who, due to transporting older children to secondary schools, have arranged with us to have a friend or family member bring/collect children to and from Deykin Avenue School. Unfortunately, due to the new restrictions, we WILL NOT be able to allow children to go home with someone other than their parent. This is because households in Birmingham CANNOT mix with other households for at least two weeks unless they are in a support bubble. As we do not know who these support bubbles are made up of, we cannot let children go home with friends, neighbours or family members outside of the household. If this causes you serious concerns regarding bringing your children to school or taking them home, please contact myself as soon as possible.

 

Please read below the key points of the new restrictions. If anyone is found to break them, the police can issues fines so please take care to follow them appropriately.

 

The Rule of 6

  • From Monday 14th September in England, it will be against the law to meet people you do not live within a group larger than 6. This applies indoors and outdoors. The 6 people include babies and children.
  • If your household has more than 6 people living in it, this is okay.
  • If you are in a support bubble with another household (one household only has 1 adult living in it, eg, a single parent and children under 18 years old, or a single adult living alone) and there are more than 6 of you, this is okay.
  • You can only have one other household in a support bubble. Eg, if you have 1 grandparent who lives alone, and a different grandparent who lives alone, you must choose which one will be in your support bubble. You cannot swap between them.
  • Schools, workplaces, shops etc CAN have more than 6 people in them as long as they are Covid secure, eg, social distancing in place, etc.

 

Birmingham Restrictions

From Tuesday 15th September, Birmingham residents are not allowed to visit other households, unless you are in a support bubble as explained on the previous page. This means that children CANNOT play with their relatives or friends who live in a different household. People are NOT allowed to meet in gardens either. Family friends and relatives CANNOT support with childcare, although registered childminders can.

 

We understand how difficult this will be for many families. However, if we are to contain the spread of Coronavirus, it is vital that we follow the rules. Police do have the powers to fine anybody breaking them.

 

If you will have difficulty bringing your children to school, or collecting them at home time, please tell me and I will see what we can do to help you.

 

Thank you.

 

Yours faithfully

 

Mrs Sharon Brewer

Deputy Head Teacher

 

 

9th July 2020

 

Please read the letter below regarding the school opening arrangements for September 2020.

10th June 2020

 

Dear Parents,
 

As you will be aware, the Governing Board of Deykin Avenue School agreed that the school would implement a phased re-opening to children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 from 15th June 2020. As we now know how many children are expected to return to school, we have been able to finalise our plans.
 

We have already spoken to many parents and have discussed with you how different the school will look and how you can best prepare your child for their return. All parents and children will need to comply with all of the new procedures that we have had to put in place e.g. social distancing, no access to the school site and no resources from home allowed into school. All of this information is on the school website.
 

All of the procedures that we have put in place have been carefully considered and have been made with reference to DfE guidance and to the school’s extensive risk assessments, which are intended to minimise the risk to all of our school community –staff, children and parents.
 

We know that this is an extremely challenging time for everyone and we will continue to support our families in any way that we can whilst observing the guidance from the Department for Education.
 

Please find below frequently asked questions and our responses. This has been put together to support you and your families. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.
 

On behalf of the staff and Governors, we thank you for your continued support during this difficult time.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Q. How will children be grouped?

The Government guidance is that children will be in ‘bubbles’ of up to 15 children. We are unable to accommodate 15 children in a classroom due to social distancing measures that we have to put in place. Some classrooms can accommodate up to nine children and some classrooms can only accommodate seven children. Children in the ‘bubbles’ will not be allowed to mix with other children or their siblings during the school day. Each class will have a separate start time and collection time. This is so that we can reduce the number of parents and children coming onto the school site.
 

Q. Will my child be in their usual classroom?

We will try our best to keep children in their usual classroom; however, this may not be possible and they may be with a different teacher. They will have their own resources but these will be limited. Resources will be cleaned regularly.

Classroom furniture has been rearranged to allow for 2m between each child and will allow for a smaller number of children in each class. Excess furniture will be removed from the classrooms. We have put photographs on the school website so that you can see what the classrooms look like.
 

Q. Can you tell me which staff will be in my child’s bubble before I make a decision on whether my child will return to school?

We are unable to confirm exact staffing at this stage but where possible staff will be from the key stage that your child is currently in but may not be their class teacher or TA. Similarly, your child will be in a classroom within their key stage but we cannot confirm which room at this stage.
 

Q. Will my Year 1/Reception child receive a school lunch?

Packed lunches will be provided each day for children in receipt of Free School meals or those attending from years 1, 2 and Reception similar to those provided for school trips. We will be unable to provide milk and have not yet received guidance on whether the free fruit scheme will be resuming. If your child is in Year 6 and entitled to a free school meal, they will receive a packed lunch. If your children brings their own packed lunch, they must take home their lunch bag every day and you must ensure that it is thoroughly washed. We would advise you to put their lunch in a disposable bag instead. If other year groups return to school, packed lunches will be available for those who are entitled to this provision.
 

Q. What if my child is upset during the day? Will you still be able to comfort them?

 As always, we will provide appropriate care and sport and will respond to your child’s needs taking account the guidance we have been given.
 

Q. How will break and lunchtimes work?

These will be staggered where appropriate to keep each bubble separate and will be supervised by the staff in the bubble at playtimes and by lunchtime supervisors at lunchtimes. Lunches will be eaten in the classroom.
 

Q. Will home learning still be provided when my child’s year group has been invited to return to school?

Home learning will be provided on a ‘best endeavours’ basis following government guidance due to staffing restrictions. It is likely that we will be unable to sustain the current level of online learning if the number of children return to school increases.
 

Q. Can my child bring in their own resources e.g. books, pencil cases, toys or their school bag?

Children cannot bring in any resources from home. They can bring in a labelled water bottle, which will be returned at the end of the school day and must be thoroughly washed. This is so that there is no cross-contamination. Resources will be provided for each child and will only be used by them.
 

Q. What will happen if my child becomes ill whilst in school?

If your child shows Covid 19 symptoms or becomes unwell at school, they will be isolated from others. We have set up a designated room for isolation if needed. A first aid trained member of staff will wear protective clothing e.g. a facemask, visor, apron and gloves. They will stay with your child, maintaining social distancing wherever possible until you arrive at the school to collect them. It is important that if we contact you, that you come immediately to the school to collect your child. Please do not send your child to school if they are unwell, even if you think they have mild symptoms or it is not Covid 19 related. We have put a flowchart on our website that details the action you must take if you suspect that you, your child or a member of your household has Covid 19 symptoms.

 

Q. If I decide not to send my child to school, will I be penalised?

As previously stated, we will as far as possible provide online learning for children via the school website. There is no attendance consequence from school or the Local Authority if you choose not to send your child to school at this time. It is your parental decision.

If you have informed us that your child will not be attending school during this time and then you change your mind, you will need to contact the school office on 0212 464 4460 or through the school enquiry email enquiry@deykinav.bham.sch.uk 
 

Please do not turn up with your child unless you have been allocated a place. If you contact the school, we will arrange for your child to start school when we have an available place and when it is safe for them to do so.

If you have informed us that you wish your child to attend school, your child’s class teacher will have telephoned you to go through the arrangements for their return. We have also put a letter on the school website, which sets out the arrangements.
 

8th June 2020 
 

Dear Parents/Carers

 

We would like to take the time to explain the procedures that we have in place to ensure that your children, yourselves, and our staff are kept safe when they return to school on Monday 15th June. We have already spoken to you on the telephone and this letter is just to remind you of the conversation we had. Please ensure that you speak to your child before they return to school so that they understand as fully as possible about how different school life will be.
 

  • All children who attend school will need to come to the entrance on Deykin Avenue. There will be markings on the ground for you to wait so that you are 2m apart from other parents/children.
  • All children (including those in Y6) will be expected to be escorted to and from school by one parent. This is to ensure that the children are kept safe on the journey as well as waiting in the school grounds until they enter the school. Parents are not to stand and chat together.
  • Children will not be expected to wear their uniforms. This is because the government has advised that children wear clean clothes to school each day and we understand that this is very difficult if you have to wash, dry and iron children’s uniforms each evening.
  • Children DO NOT need to bring a bag with them. There will be chances to go outside, but the children will not be asked to change into their PE kits If a child brings a coat/jumper with them, it will have to be kept on the back of their chair rather than on the peg in the corridor.
  • Children WILL be expected to bring their own drinks bottle with them. We will not be using the plastic cups in the classrooms because of cross-contamination.
  • On entry to the school, children will use hand sanitiser. Throughout the day, there will be frequent handwashing routines in place.
  • Desks have been placed 2m apart. The government has acknowledged that children in Reception and Y1 will find this very difficult and may not be able to stick to this social distancing rule. However, we have to try and follow this advice as closely as possible.
  • Children will spend time outside as much as possible with the other children in their ‘bubbles’ and the two members of staff they will be with. They WILL NOT be mixing with other ‘bubbles’ of children at any time.
  • When in the classroom, they will sit at their allocated seat and will not be able to freely move around the classroom as they normally would. They will also eat their lunch at their desk.
  • Children will not be working in books. Work will either be verbal or on their own whiteboards.
  • Playtimes will also look different as there will be no toys to play with. Social distancing is still expected to take place and for children in Y6 in particular, it will be expected that they follow this rule. Reminders to stay apart will be as frequent as required.
  • Lessons will not be what the children would normally be following. Children in Reception and Y1 will have some sort of phonics activities and maths lessons. There will also be creative activities. Children in Y6 will have some sort of maths and English lessons as well as an emphasis on transition to Y7. All children will have PSHE lessons which will hopefully help them cope with the terrible things they have witnessed and heard in the media during the last few months.
  • Reception and Y1 children who are in school, will have a free packed lunch each day provided by Cityserve. They are continuing to provide our meals as we are unable to transfer to Dolce at the moment.
  • Children who are eligible to receive a free school meal, may no longer receive the £15 weekly shopping vouchers in guidance with the DfE document, “Providing free school meals during the coronavirus outbreak “- 28th May 2020.
  • Children in school will have a packed lunch provided by Cityserve. Children at home will receive either a packed lunch or a food parcel which will be collected by one parent at a specified time. We are waiting for confirmation from Cityserve. These will take the place of the food vouchers. We will let you know as soon as we do what will be happening.
  • Y6 children who are eligible to receive a free school meal, will have one. For children who pay, they will have to bring their own packed lunch in with them. Lunch boxes MUST be washed every day in order to avoid cross-contamination.
  • It is very important that you keep to the times we give you. Please DO NOT be late.
    • Reception - Arrive at school at 9:00am and collected at 2:45pm
    • Year 1 - Arrive at school at 9:15am and collected at 3:00pm
    • Year 6 - Arrive at school at 9:30am and collected at 3:15pm
    • All children to be dropped off and collected at the ramp entrance on Deykin Avenue.
  • If a parent wishes to speak to a member of staff, this will be through a telephone conversation. Only in exceptional circumstance will we arrange a face-to-face meeting in school.
  • No homework will be set and there will be no clubs for the children to take part in.
  • If any child deliberately ignores the rules, we will contact you to discuss this and you may be asked to take your child home.
  • If a child is struggling to cope with all of these enormous changes, or is distressed at any time in school, we will contact you to collect your child, take them home and reassure them. Hopefully, this will have helped them to cope and they will be able to return to school the next day and try again.
  • If any member of a bubble (staff or child) shows any symptoms of coronavirus, then the whole bubble will be sent home to isolate for up to 14 days. The person who has symptoms will be expected to be tested as soon as possible. Go to https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/testing-for-coronavirus/ask-for-a-test-to-check-if-you-have-coronavirus/ to book a test.
  • If this test proves negative, everyone will be allowed back into school.
  • If it proves positive, everyone will need to isolate for 14 days. Positive results will also involve someone from NHS England’s Track and Trace programme who will contact you to see who the infected person has been in contact with.
  • It is essential that if you, or anyone in your household has symptoms of coronavirus, or has a positive test result, that you all stay in your house and do not mix with other households.           

 

  • If a child shows symptoms of Coronavirus in school, their parents will be contacted and expected to collect them immediately from school. The child will wait in an isolation room, with a member of staff who will be wearing PPE (mask, face visor, apron and gloves) until the child leaves the school. You must then follow the previous advice.
  • There will be a range of signs, inside and outside the school, reminding children, staff and parents what is expected of them in order to keep themselves and others safe.
  • There will be an enhanced cleaning schedule throughout the school day.
  • School will be open Monday to Thursday so that teachers can plan on a Friday and a thorough deep clean can take place at the end of each week before children return on a Monday.
  • If you decide to not send your child into school (eg, they do not like the current system; you prefer to keep them at home with you, etc) this is fine but you MUST contact school and let us know. If a child has been attending school then stops without an explanation, we will follow our usual practice of ringing you. If we cannot get a response, we will make a home visit.

 

As a school, we will do everything we can to protect the health and well-being of our children and staff. However, we cannot guarantee that your child will always be 2m apart from other children and adults - this is even less likely for those in Reception and Year 1. We will do our best to reinforce social distancing but if a child became ill, or distressed in school, we would comfort them as we normally would and obviously, this cannot be done 2m away from them.

 

Any questions, please do not hesitate to contact myself or Mrs Brewer and we will do our best to help you.

 

Thank you.

 

Yours faithfully.

 

 

 

Mrs J. Edwards

Head Teacher
 

18th May 2020

 

Dear Parents,

 

Please see below a very important letter regarding the potential re-opening of schools, and the arrangements and rules to be implemented. 

 

Deykin Avenue Staff

Sample Classroom.mp4

Still image for this video

 

 

 

 

20th March 2020 

Dear parents and carers, 

You will all be aware of the announcement made by government earlier this week that schools are to close from today t0 all but certain groups of pupils. 

The government has updated its guidance today about school closures and this is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/closure-of­educational-settings-information-for-parents-and-carers. If you're unsure about whether your child would be classed as vulnerable or if you are a key worker, please read the government guidance and speak to your child's school. If they are able to, schools will be opening on Monday for vulnerable children and those of key workers. In the days and weeks that follow, schools will be working in local areas to group together and make the best use of resources. Schools will keep in contact with you as arrangements are made.

 

The resilience shown by your children's schools over the last few weeks has been truly remarkable and I'm sure you share my heartfelt gratitude for how school staff have responded to this outbreak. Everyone has total commitment to ensuring that this unprecedented situation is handled as well as possible. Schools are working on innovative ways to make sure that children can access learning over the coming weeks and will be in touch with you about this. 


I know that this will have been an extremely unsettling period for you and your children, especially those due to sit exams or leave school or move to new schools later this year. Please be assured that schools will continue to do everything they can to support pupils during this difficult time. Please also see the council's website for a range of other information about services at this time https://www.birmingham.gov.uk/news/article/560/covid-19 affected birmingham city council services

 

Kind regards

 

Dr Tim O'Neill 
Director for Education and Skills 


Education and Skills Directorate (Birmingham City Council)

1 Lancaster Circus 
PO Box 17550 
Birmingham 
B4 7DJ 

                                                                                                                                                                                               19th March 2020

 

Dear Parents/Carers,
 

After schools close on Friday 20th March 2020, they will remain closed until further notice except for children of key workers and vulnerable children, as part of the country’s ongoing response to coronavirus.
 

We believe that examples of key workers include NHS staff, police, firefighters, supermarket staff and delivery drivers who need to be able to go to work to support the country’s fight to tackle coronavirus. However, this list may change.
 

Vulnerable children include those who have a social worker and those with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP).
 

Children who do not fall into these groups should remain at home with appropriate care.
 

We need to identify the number of children likely to need emergency provision at our school during the extended school closure period. If you believe you are a key worker (we are unsure at the moment whether this means both parents are key workers or one if you are a single parent) and require emergency provision, please contact the school office and provide the following information;
 

Job title, place of work, work contact number
 

If your child is classed as vulnerable (has an EHCP or a social worker) and you require emergency provision, please contact the school office and ask to speak to Mrs Edwards or Mrs Brewer.


Please be aware that this emergency provision may change when the government provides us with further details.

 

Thank you for your support during this difficult time.

 

Best wishes
 

Mrs Edwards
 

Head Teacher

 

Year 6 Condover Hall Trip - Important Parent Information

Wednesday 18th March 2020

Dear Parents

 

I am writing to inform you that we have taken the decision to cancel our visit to Condover on Monday 20th April 2020. In light of the situation regarding Coronavirus, we know that this has concerned many of you, as it has also concerned the staff who would have been attending this residential.

 

We simply do not know what will happen regarding school closures or visits; it may be something we can rearrange before the children leave us in July. That is a conversation we will have with Condover if government advice makes this a possibility.

 

We have been waiting for Condover to cancel (which at the moment, they are not doing) or for schools to be forced to close. This is because we would be able to claim our money back. If we cancel and Condover are still open for business, we will lose all of our money. (Approximately £4500.) Obviously, this is not something we can afford to lose.

 

Parents who have paid for their child to attend Condover will be able to get a refund at the School Office during the afternoons. Please see Mrs Dargan and she will do this for you.

 

Any questions, please do not hesitate to ask myself or Mrs Brewer and we will do our best to help you. Many thanks for your support and co-operation.

 

Yours faithfully

 

Mrs Janet Edwards

Head Teacher

 

 

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