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Priory Woods School & Arts College

Priory Woods School & Arts College A Special Place to Learn

Mon 11th May

Dear Families,

I am sure by now you will have heard about the governments's road map to move us gradually out of lockdown. Whilst there seem to be many ambiguities around a range of issues, what we are most concerned with is the news relating to schools and a possible, but not definite, date for opening on June 1st.

You'll have noticed that the focus has been on certain age groups within primary school and Y10 in secondary.  I'm not convinced that this approach is the most appropriate for Priory Woods and today we began to think of the way forward that is the safest for our children and staff. Key questions we are considering are:

  1. How can we have safe social distancing in school? What changes will we need to make to achieve this as best we can?
  2. How do we know that we are not placing our children in any danger by exposing them to multiple contacts , even although we will do our best to minimise these?
  3. Will we have our medical support back into school? What about our physios and OTs, speech and language therapists?
  4. Are there any training issues for staff?
  5. Although we do have PPE in school, will the supply required be able to be met?
  6. Will we have access to cleaners throughout the day and deep cleaning at the end of the week?
  7. How can we work with transport which will have reduced capacity as they ensure your child's safety by adhering to social distancing requirements on the vehicles?
  8. Will staff have access to testing?
  9. Will we have safe staffing levels if staff are shielding or become ill?

This is not an exhaustive list and I'm sure you will have some other questions you feel need to be answered. At the moment, I don't have those answers but please rest assured that whatever decisions we make will have safety at the heart and hopefully in the light of robust advice. There will be lots of work to do to establish the balance between the risks and the benefits of coming to school and how best to minimise the risks. Given the complex medical needs of so many of  our children, we need to be supported to help us get this right.

If you wish to comment on any of this, I would welcome any concerns or ideas which could be emailed to the office email address

As we stand at the moment, apart from the small number of children whose parents are key workers, children are safer at home where they have limited contact with others. We know that it has been nigh on impossible to maintain social distancing with the group in school which is why we were relieved when we were given PPE. 

We will be working hard to move forward with this but still await any advice specific to schools like ours.

I will keep you informed of any decisions or plans when I can.

Stay safe and alert!

Janis French

Head Teacher

Priory Woods School and Arts College