School Closure Letter 19/03/2020
Dear Parents & Carers,
As you will have heard yesterday afternoon, Westgate Primary School will be closed from the end of Friday to all children except those of our key worker parents, such as NHS staff, police and delivery drivers and those who have an Educational Health Care Plan. We will run provision in school to make sure that parents in these front line professions are able to continue to work. Please note however that as we have yet to receive clarification of key workers form the government, this list is subject to change.
Arrangements for sending home work
Children will be sent home with a “home learning book” today in which to complete work. Class teachers will then set work weekly, which the children and yourselves will be able to access through their class pages on: https://www.westgateprimary.com/. To access the class pages please click on ‘menu’, then ‘Children’ and then ‘Class Pages’, or click on the class numbers on the homepage.. These pages can be accessed by computer, tablets and smartphones. The work the children are expected to complete will be contained within the weekly “home learning packs”;
Below is a quick summary of weekly tasks to be expected:
- Reading - one reading comprehension or phonics activity and at least 20 minutes of daily reading (usernames and passwords will be provided for Accelerated Reader for children in Year 2 and up)
- Writing - One longer piece of writing or several shorter pieces
- 10 spellings
- Grammar – one piece of work
- Maths – daily Times Tables Rockstars for older children (usernames and passwords will be provided) or topmarks maths for younger children; daily Corbett Maths 5-a-day for older children (links will be provided) and one piece of longer learning
- Topic – one piece of work
@Sport England have created a great page of useful resources and links for staying active while you're at home – (for children and adults). https://www.sportengland.org/news/how-stay-active-while-youre-home
Free School Meals:
Further information will follow for the parents of children who received free school meals. The education secretary Gavin Williamson yesterday said the Government will put in place a national voucher system for children eligible for free school meals. We await the details of this scheme but will let you know as soon as the plans are finalised.
Communication during possible school closures is very important to us. Teachers will be available via email during the working hours of 9:00am to 3:15pm. There may not be an instant reply, but the class teachers will respond to your emails. The following email addresses are for your classes:
Reception – firstname.lastname@example.org – Miss Adams
Year 1 – email@example.com – Mrs Tyrell
Year 2 – firstname.lastname@example.org – Mrs Sampson
Year 3 – email@example.com - Mr Townrow
Year 4 – firstname.lastname@example.org – Mr Allen
Year 5 – email@example.com – Mr Clewes
Year 6 – firstname.lastname@example.org – Mrs Lingard
Whole school matters – email@example.com – Mr. Watson
We would like to stress that these emails are only to be used in the event of school closures and emails at other times and for enquiries outside of learning should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org, as per usual.
Children of key workers, such as NHS staff, police and delivery drivers:
If you are a key worker and you wish for your children to be in school from Monday 23rd March could you please email email@example.com as soon as possible so that we can make the necessary arrangements. We require the following information:
- Your Child’s name & Class
- Which key service you work in and confirmation that there is no other adult in the household to care for your child/children.
- Which days you need your child to be in school.
Thank you again for your patience this week. I appreciate that everyone has wanted to know what was going to be happening and it has been a challenge to find the balance between giving parents enough information about our plans in case of closure to reassure them that we were prepared, without overwhelming parents with too much information which wouldn’t have been relevant at that point in time. I hope that we have managed to tread that tightrope successfully.
Thank you to the wonderful Westgate staff for spending time preparing materials and resources so that the children can continue with their learning away from school. We hope that the mixture of activities and exercises will engage and enthuse the children as we try to replicate (as much as is possible) a normal week’s worth of work.
The government has given no indication of how long the closure of schools will last and, therefore, we will continue to set work each week on the website (with the exception of the Easter holiday weeks) until we are told that children will return to school.
Please look after yourselves and those in your community. The Westgate Family has shown itself to be incredibly strong this week with so many parents and children talking to me about the fact that they are looking after their neighbours and making sure that they have the necessary food and essentials. You really are the most amazing ‘family’.