Partial School Opening - From Monday 23rd March 2020
Further to the government statement yesterday I can confirm that from the close of play on Friday 20th March we will close all Academies within Maltby Learning Trust for the majority of students, only remaining open for those children of ‘key workers’, who would otherwise be forced to stay at home. In line with the Prime Minister’s announcement, we will also remain open for the ‘most vulnerable children’, those with an EHCP (Education, Health and Care Plan) in place, or those who have a social worker supporting them. The scientific advice shows that school settings are safe for this small number of children attending, but asking others to stay at home will just go towards helping us slow the spread of this virus.
The Government has now released a full list of ‘key workers’ deemed ‘essential’ to the COVID-19 response and whose children will continue to be cared for at school. Children with at least one parent identified as key workers by the government can send their children to school if required.
To support our planning over the coming days and weeks it would be useful if you could contact us by lunchtime tomorrow informing us if your family falls into any of the categories.
As I am sure you will appreciate the implications of this government decision are far reaching and there are still specific areas in the latest statements to which we do not yet have the full details. However, please be assured that we are in regular dialogue with Leaders within and beyond the Trust to ensure that we continue to provide some form of educational provision for all students, be that in their own home, local school or another location. Also, we are mindful about how we support those young people who were due to sit external examinations or tests in the summer term. It is clear from the latest communications that these tests will not be taking place as planned and we expect further guidance to be released over the coming days about how any teacher assessments will be agreed and validated nationally. We will keep you updated on these developments, but it is vital that the students in Y11 and 13 continue with their studies at home and prepare for any internal assessments that may be conducted in the summer term.
I would like to reassure you that staff have invested significant time preparing for this eventuality and plans are in place to ensure every student can access learning resources every day during the closure period. Most of these resources can be found on the school website or via specific learning platforms signposted from the website. I would ask you to work closely with your son/daughter over the coming days and weeks to structure their time during the day to support their continued studies. Please be assured that the leaders and staff in school will continue to be available for contact via specific group email addresses listed on the school website.
Finally, as a Trust we are concerned about the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) on students who are currently eligible for benefits-related free school meals. At this time we are keen to continue to provide access to a meal for all those children who would normally benefit from this provision in school. Therefore, each school will provide these children with a ‘grab bag’ meal available for collection from their local school. Please see the academy website for more details.
I would like to thank you for your continued support at this time and remind you that we will do everything possible to support you and your family through this challenging period. Please note that the current situation is constantly changing and Leaders in the Trust will keep abreast of this and adapt our response accordingly. We will ensure that the communication lines remain open and we will provide regular updates via the website and Twitter feeds.
Best wishes, and I hope you all stay safe.
Mr D. Sutton
Chief Executive Officer
Maltby Learning Trust