Message from Mrs. Castell
At the end of our first full half term together since Christmas, I am so proud of the children and the way they have adjusted to school life. Thank you to parents for working with us. We understand that the way we operate in school is not as relaxed as the opening up in society, but this is because we are directed to have these measures in place, so that schools do not fuel a rise in transmission. I will inform you every step of the way before we make changes. A reminder that after half term we will let children play with the other class in their year group at lunchtime. Further easing and the hosting of school events depends on government announcements about the lifting of restrictions after 21st June.
To our wonderful staff, thank you. You have gone over and above to keep children safe and to give them the best opportunities. It is difficult when you have not been able to see loved ones but your hard work has helped to keep our school safe. We were very sad to say goodbye to Mrs Gannicott on Tuesday and we presented her with a number of gifts and cards from the school during a special assembly. She has asked us to send a big heartfelt thank you to her WIS family: staff, parents and children for all the good wishes and gifts. She says “although I am enjoying learning new things, I miss you all already” and the feeling is mutual!
I have been approached about the wearing of masks this week from a number of parents. The guidance still recommends masks when parents come onto the school premises. The governors and myself have a duty of care to everyone, including our staff, many of whom have still not been vaccinated and we respectfully ask that you continue to wear them. We know that interaction with parents on the doors is vital for communication but as with interactions in a shop, masks are a safeguard for the staff. Please remember if a member of staff tests positive then every child and member of staff who had been in contact would have to isolate for ten days and that could mean up to 60 children isolating, so please respect our attempts to be as safe as possible.
This term, local inter-school sporting competitions are being held online. EYFS will be speed stacking, Year 1 will take part in an online Teddy 'Lympics and Year 2 will compete in the online Mini Games. Pictures will be shared with you. Regarding Sports Day, just to stress our intention has always been to run a sports day for the children, the unknown is whether or not we will be allowed to invite parents. I believe this will be clarified in the week of 14th June.
At this time of year, we plan the children’s transition to the next academic year. In some previous years we have split the Year One children before going into Year Two. Just to confirm we will not be doing that this year, as the two lockdowns have meant that the children have not even had one full year together, so we want to ensure consistency. Mr Taylor and I have met to plan the transition for Year Two children who will be going up to the Junior School. You will have received a letter from Mr Taylor inviting you to a meeting on 24th June. The children will visit the Junior School in their bubbles and WJS staff will come over to meet the children outside and share stories. We will let you know the dates the children are going over in due course. I continue to get questions about open evenings and as we have said on previous occasions we will offer a parent consultation alongside the report in July. This is in line with our usual practice in the spring term where we have our parents evenings at the end of that term, but were prevented from doing so due to the lockdown. I do stress our teachers are totally approachable and willing to discuss how your child is getting on at any time throughout the year. If parents are allowed in school there will also be an opportunity to meet your child’s new teacher at the end of the term.
We break up for half term today and return on Tuesday 8th June, as Monday 7th is an INSET day. A reminder that you must arrange a PCR test for your child if they display any Covid symptoms and email the result to email@example.com if symptoms begin at any time before Sunday evening. Sharks, don’t forget it’s Forest School on the first day back and on Wednesday 9th June the whole school is looking forward to the visit from Night Owls! There will be an opportunity (no obligation!) to purchase a photo of your child with an owl. If you know your child may be concerned or worried about the owls, please let us know - full details have been sent by ParentMail.
Have a wonderful half term break, hopefully with better weather!