Update on Covid-19 Arrangements (23.03.20)

Since the Government’s announcement last week about schools, we have been trying to work out what this will mean for John Grant School. All schools are closed for education, but schools should remain open for the children of Key Worker Parents and vulnerable children eg those with EHCPs. All pupils at JGS have an EHCP, but with our reduced staff numbers, we could not provide anything like our full service.
The message for ALL families (ie whether the pupils have an EHCP or have parents who are key workers), is that those children who can be cared for at home, SHOULD be cared for at home. The service schools are trying to provide is for those in the most difficult circumstances.
We are then trying to understand:
• Which of our pupils have parents who are Key Workers and are faced with difficulties with childcare.
• Which of our pupils are in the most vulnerable circumstances and need some help with childcare.
Many of our pupils are extremely vulnerable because of their underlying medical conditions. These children should be in isolation and should not be coming to school at all.
Providing a service in our schools is not straightforward:
• It is not simply the number of staff available to work, but having the staff who not only know the individual pupils and their needs, but also have the correct training to meet those needs.
• We will need to liaise with school transport to work out new routes for those coming into school and to ensure these staff know about the various children’s needs.
• We need to ensure we have enough cleaning and care products available to meet all needs and keep all safe. This is not the case at the moment.
• We need to have enough cleaners available to ensure any areas used are deep cleaned at the end of each day.
• Only children (and staff) who are fit and healthy generally should be come into school. We want to keep everyone as fit and healthy as possible, in order to have as many staff available as possible, but also to ensure if anyone does catch Covid-19, they are as fit as possible to fight it. We are considering ways to ensure this is the case, possibly with some simple screening for all on entry.
I can assure you that in liaison with the Local Authority and the other special schools in Norfolk, we are trying to work through these issues. When we all met (virtually) at the end of last week however, it did not look at though we would be able to sort out everything before what would have been the beginning of the Easter holiday. We are using this week to liaise with all and plan properly for what we can offer after Easter.
Free School Meals Support: We are working on trying to get some support out to our families who are entitled to Free School Meals. We hope to be able to send out some vouchers before the end of this week
Email Contact: We are in the process of switching to a new Management Information System and will now be able to send out emails to inform our families. Unfortunately, it is not possible to send an email back to this address, so please send any comments or concerns to Office@Johngrant.norfolk.sch.uk