4th September 2020
Dear Parents and Carers,
We write to you to set out the arrangements we have made to run Gosforth Park Out of School Club before and after school from September 8th.
Protective measures we are taking in light of coronavirus (COVID-19)
First and foremost, it goes without saying that the safety of your child and of our staff is our top priority. Although as the CMO, Professor Chris Whitty has said, they are confident in the extensive evidence that there is an exceptionally small risk of children of primary or secondary school age dying from COVID-19, it is still important that we put in place measures to decrease the spread of COVID-19 as far as is possible.
We are working hard, following the latest government guidance and together with the schools, to develop and implement a number of new ways of operating. This will allow us to open as safely as possible, focusing on measures that will help limit the risk of coronavirus transmitting within our setting.
We are attaching a document that explains all the steps we are taking. We are aware that there is a lot of information in this document and that you have also received a great deal of information from the schools. We will therefore just highlight here the absolute must know points. These include:
- Asking that anyone who is displaying coronavirus symptoms, or who lives with someone who does, not to attend the setting. That includes children and staff who work here.
- Keeping our children in smaller groups with as much consistent staffing as possible, and minimising contact with other groups around the setting. You can see which group your child will be in and where that group will be based in the attached document.
- Cleaning our hands more often than usual. We have developed routines to ensure children understand when and how to wash their hands, making sure they wash them thoroughly for at least 20 seconds using running water and soap and dry them thoroughly, or use alcohol hand rub or sanitiser ensuring that all parts of the hands are covered.
- Ensuring our children understand good respiratory hygiene by promoting the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach and ensuring a good supply of tissues and bins throughout the setting.
- Implementing an enhanced cleaning schedule, ensuring surfaces touched by children and staff are cleaned regularly and throughout the day, including table tops, door handles and play equipment.
- Asking children not to bring toys or other items from home to the setting and to only bring things that are necessary for school.
- Asking parents and carers to physically distance from each other and from staff when dropping off and collecting their children and to limit drop off and collection to one parent or carer per household
In the mornings
The morning session runs from 745am. Please do not enter the school gates to queue up before 745am. Breakfast will be served only between 745 and 815am.
BEFS KS1 and KS2 to come to the fire exit door of the BEFS hall
GEMS and all GPFS children to come to the main entrance of GPFS
RECEPTION and NURSERY children from BEFS and GPFS to come to the main entrance of GPFS. If you have an early years child in GPFS or a child in GEMS and another child in BEFS you can drop them both at the BEFS fire exit door. They will be sent to the correct groups.
SOPS children, including Reception, to go to the wooden gazebo in the GPFS play area. On bad weather days after 8am this group will be in the main hall of St Oswalds. In this instance a member of staff will meet parents at the car park to direct them.
On the first occasion that any child attends, and on subsequent days until the child is happily settled, one parent or carer may accompany the child to the door of Gosforth Park First School/Broadway East First School fire door/the gazebo. Parents are not allowed to enter the building. A staff member will answer the door and the child will be handed over at the door. Parents are asked to ensure that they stay 2m away from staff.
For children who have previously attended and all new children once they are settled, parents are asked to accompany their children to the bottom of the ramp to the front door only (GPFS/GEMS/Early Years), or to no closer than 2m from the gazebo (SOPS) or Broadway East fire door, then to stand back and wait until their children have been welcomed by a member of staff. Only one family group must be on the GPFS ramp at any one time. Parents are asked to queue up at 2m apart, in GPFS there are rainbow markers on the ground to mark this. Parents will need to be aware that there will be a queue at busy times and to allow time for this.
If children arrive after the groups have gone out to play at 8.15am parents will be asked to follow the same routine but at the gates to the GPFS playground.
All BEFS, GPFS and GEMS children must arrive by 8.35am and all SOPS children must arrive by 8.25am to avoid crossover with parents arriving to drop their children at school. If parents arrive after this time they will be turned away to deliver their child to school themselves at the school’s allocated time. We have agreed with the school that no OSC parents will be on the premises at the same time as school parents.
Please do not arrive to collect your children before 345pm to avoid crossover with school parents.
Between 445pm and 515pm on a Monday to Thursday a member of staff will stand near the gate to the play area (dry weather) or on the fire exit steps facing the car park (wet weather). When parents arrive this member of staff will radio the relevant group to send the child down. This member of staff will sign the children out, not the parents. Parents must observe 2m distance rules and only one parent/carer to collect.
Outside of these times and on Fridays parents will be asked to text the club from the car park when they arrive (07941413728). They will then come to the play area gates or the relevant entrance for their group on wet weather days, as below:
Wet weather day collection points
BEFS KS1 and KS2 to come to the fire exit door to Broadway East
GEMS, SOPS Y5/Y6, GPFS KS1 and KS2 to come to the side doors to Gosforth Park First School until 530pm. After 530pm to come to the bottom of the ramp. Please note on Fridays GEMS and SOPS Y5/6 to come to the ramp at any time throughout the session.
All RECEPTION and NURSERY, SOPS Y1/Y2/Y3/Y4 to come to the bottom of the ramp to main door to GPFS
Necessary and urgent conversations only between staff and parents can be carried out at a distance of more than 2m at collection or drop off. All other conversations must be had by text or mobile phone call.
What can parents and carers do to help?
There are a number of things parents and carers can do to help us make these arrangements effective, in addition to the points listed above concerning arrival and departure and not bringing toys to the setting.
- If your child is displaying symptoms or has displayed symptoms (cough, fever, loss of smell/taste), in the previous 10 days or lives with someone who has displayed symptoms in the last 14 days, they should not attend the club unless they have tested negative for coronavirus.
- If your child develops symptoms at the club they will be isolated and you will be called to collect them immediately. Further details can be read in the attached document.
- Please talk to your children about the return to the Out of School Club and how things will be different, emphasising the need for them to listen carefully to staff about washing their hands and keeping their distance from other children as much as possible. We are very aware that this has been a time of uncertainty, change and perhaps anxiety for children and that perhaps some children are suffering bereavement. Many of them may not feel happy about coming back to school, others may be very keen to get back. We would encourage you to share with us how your children are feeling and if there are any concerns that you have.
We hope that this letter and attached document has given you the information you need to understand what arrangements we have made for the full time return to school in September. We hope that you are reassured by this and by the fact that we have been continuously open since schools closed both during term tome and the holidays so our staff are well versed in all of these areas. We are looking forward to welcoming your children back and we hope that you are assured that we have taken all possible steps to ensure safety for all in our setting. If you have any questions or suggestions, please let us know.
Jo and Margaret