Coronavirus Update 19 March – PARTIAL SCHOOL CLOSURE from Monday

There have so far been no cases of coronavirus infection of any staff or pupils in school. We have 176 students absent today, most of the students off school are absent because of parents being concerned about the possibility of infection.

We have 21 staff absent due to advice about self-isolation or child-care related problems.

The statement yesterday by the Secretary of State confused both teachers and parents. His announcement that students with EHCPs will be expected to attend school because they are vulnerable is the opposite of the advice given by Health which is recommending that anyone with significant medical conditions should remain at home.

Most children at Wilson Stuart School have health and medical issues and are at the highest risk according to the Department of Health. Their advice is clear, most of our students should remain at home.

We are working on assessing each student with support from the medical staff in school. This is to determine on a medical risk basis those students who must stay at home and those who could continue to attend school with parental agreement.

We will be in touch tomorrow with the parents whose children are considered to be at the least risk if they continue to attend school.

What we are aiming to do, and have already started, is to provide as much support as we can for every student whether they are in school or not. Where there is a lot of need we will be putting together packages of support for families to help them through these difficult times. This could include home visits.

If a parent decides to keep a child at home even though we consider it unnecessary we will not be taking any action. On the other hand, if the decision is that a child must remain at home and parents disagree, we will explain our reasons for this but the decision will not be negotiable.

Yours sincerely,

Steve Hughes
Executive Head Teacher