Welcome Back

4th September 2020

Dear parents and carers,
Welcome back! It was so lovely to see so many happy, smiling faces this morning at drop off and pick up times. We have spoken to all of the children about how they feel to be back and we had nothing but positive comments. There were no tears (except from parents!) and although there was a little anxiety in some, this disappeared within minutes. All in all, the return to school has been really positive and smooth. There were a couple of things I and some of the other teachers and parents noticed, one of which we have already amended and the other which needs to be repeated as below.
You will receive a personal email sometime today with the staggered start times and finishes, there are one or two amendments so please could you check carefully. It is important that you drop off at the stated time (or within a minute or two). There shouldn’t be any waiting at the school gates or gatherings for a chat. Children should be dropped then you leave. If there are other families at the gate then please form an orderly line 2 metres apart from the next family. We have not put markings on the floor because we want school to look as normal as possible for the children. It would be a shame to have to do this at the school gates but we will do it if this doesn’t improve. If you do arrive early then please wait in the car until it is your child’s start time.
If you have siblings at school then they should be dropped at the earliest time of the sibling timings. A staff member will collect the other sibling from the same gate and the same at the end of the day, collect at the latest sibling finish time. If the sibling is not of school age then please could you keep hold of them or keep them close to you so they are not mixing with other children in the bubble.
I apologise if this appears to be pedantic or clinical but we are closely following government advice and trying to keep our staff, children and yourselves as safe as can be and prevent another lockdown.
The blended learning task will begin next week and will be explained in more detail by each classteacher. In the main, it will be one hour of physical exercise and one hour of project based inquiry on a topic of choice. Children will be required to sign into Seesaw to upload their work in the same way they did during lockdown. If you have any technical difficulties or problems then could you please contact your child’s classteacher via email before next Friday and we will see if we can help. Early years and Key stage one were using Tapestry over lockdown but we will be changing all classes to Seesaw to make it easier for parents to sign into one learning platform if they have siblings and it will also be easier for the children in the long run. We are transitioning from Tapestry to Seesaw presently and hope to be up and running with the changes by early next week. Again you will receive a personal email notifying you of the changes and what you need to do to log in.
As you know, we expect children to read at home on a daily basis. This could be any form of reading, from PC to magazines to books, it could be shared reading, to siblings, to parents or to the dog. In order to keep a check on this, we ask you to record your child’s reading on a reading record and share with school, children receive rewards for the amount they read at home and they love receiving the awards. In order to continue this, early years and key stage one will bring home a reading record. Please can you record your child’s reading in the reading record and at the end of every week, please take a photo of the record and upload it to Seesaw (you will have instructions on how to do this). Key stage 2 children will record their own reading each evening on Seesaw.
Using the learning platforms and keeping their usage simmering with the blended learning and reading records is a positive way forward. It means that we are grasping some of the positives of lockdown and taking them forward, using 21st century skills which are transferrable skills for life. There is more emphasis on children working independently with a variety of technologies at home, blended with the school based learning with their peers.
If you have any queries then please do not hesitate to contact me on head@germoe.cornwall.sch.uk
Have a lovely weekend
Paula Blackburn