Unfortunately, the arrival of the Omicron variant has led to incredibly high case rates nationally, which reached Wakefield over the Christmas holidays and now appear to be rising in school, particularly in Key Stage 2.
I know that you may find this concerning but we are continuing to monitor the situation. Please be reassured that for most people and especially for children and young people, coronavirus (COVID19) will be a mild illness.
After being informed of a number of new cases today in addition to the increase in cases yesterday, I have spoken to the wider Leadership Team and the Chair of Governors and we have decided that it would be sensible at this point to enact our management outbreak plan to reduce the spread of the infection as much as possible for the benefit of pupils, staff and the wider school community. On this occasion we feel this is a proportionate response to slow the spread as much as possible.
The following additional measures will therefore be implemented for the next two weeks starting on Monday. There are no changes to anything else not mentioned. After this we hope that we can step measures down in line with our schools covid guidance document:
1. Pupils should still attend school - there are no attendance restrictions and this remains compulsory.
2. Reduced mixing between classes will take place where possible to reduce the risk of cases in one class spreading throughout the school.
3. Any events planned for the next two weeks will be postponed or offered remotely - The Y6 Class Worship on Tuesday will take place via Zoom at 9:15am.
4. All internal worship/assemblies will be conducted via Zoom.
5. Regular testing of staff, children and parents is advised.
6. Family Dining will be suspended to avoid year group mixing.
7. All after school clubs will be suspended for the next two weeks. Wrap around care (breakfast and after school club) will remain fully open.
8. Visitors will be limited into school - by appointment only and where essential to the running of the school.
9. Staff to revert back to social distancing as much as possible and return to previous rules in regards to staff room and resource room use.
10. Ventilation will be maximised. We appreciate the weather is currently not very pleasant and will therefore obviously allow extra layers and coats if needed in class. If it's too unpleasant to have windows permanently open then windows will be open wide for 10 minutes each hour to 'purge' the room.
11. Daily lateral flow testing for children in Year 4 and Year 6, where we have the most cases are advised to test daily for 7 days from Saturday 15th January 2022. This is provided they can tolerate it and it is not compulsory. LFT availability is much better now through the home delivery/community pharmacy website which is the route parents are encouraged to use. Please ask us if you are struggling to get any as we may be able to help.
Our priority remains to continue to deliver face-to-face, high-quality education to pupils. The evidence is clear that being out of education causes significant harm to educational attainment, life chances, mental and physical health.
Mr M Walker