Returning to Face-to-Face Teaching 2021

ebs logo on grey background

Dear Parents / Carers
Following the announcement by the Prime Minister that all students will begin to return to face-to-face education from Monday 8th March, we are writing to share with you our plans on mass testing and the reintegration back to school.

The safety of our staff and students is paramount and we have been following Government guidance alongside advice from the local authority and from Teaching Unions when formulating these plans.

We previously ran a very successful pastoral reintegration programme after Lockdown 1 and as such we will follow a similar support programme combined with Lateral Flow Testing for all year groups between Monday 8th and Friday 12th March. On Monday 15th March, all students will return to a full timetable, but with staggered start times, break/lunch times and finish times. Please read all the following information contained in this letter so that you and your child are clear about the return to school plan and in particular to ascertain your child’s allocated start date and specific arrival time.

If you have any queries or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact the school. In the meantime, please continue to stay safe.

Yours faithfully,

Laura Coffill
Associate Deputy Headteacher

When will my child return?
We have carried out thorough risk assessments to ensure the safety of our children, parents/carers and staff. Part of the risk assessment is to offer 3 lateral flow tests to all students and to ensure students are formally inducted back into the building so that they understand the safety and hygiene measures in place. As such students will all receive a reintegration session after their second lateral flow test that explains to them the new procedures as well as checking in on them and answering any questions they may have.

DateYear Group
Monday 8th
Test 1
Keyworker students – Drama Studio
Year 11: 8:30-10:30 – Sports Hall
Year 12: 10:45-12:45 – Sports Hall
Year 7: 10:15-12:45 – Drama Studio
Year 13/14 1:15-3:15 – Sports Hall*
Students come into school at a time sent to them. They remain in school for the 30 minute processing time until they receive their result. They return home and complete Skooler based work. You will be informed immediately of a positive test result.
Tuesday 9th
Test 2
Year 8: 8:30-10:30 Sports Hall
Year 9: 10:45-12:15 Sports Hall
Year 10: 1:15-3:15 Sports Hall*
Students come into school at a time sent to them. They remain in school for the 30-minute processing time until they receive their result. They return home and complete Skooler based work. You will be informed immediately of a positive test result
Wednesday 10thAny missed appointments?
Thursday 11th
Test 2 and reintegration
Year 11: 8:30-10:30 -Sports Hall
Year 12: 10:45-12:45 -Sports Hall
Year 7: 10:15-12:45 Drama Studio
Year 13/14 1:15-3:15 Sports Hall*
Students have second test and then return to their form rooms for a reintegration and team building session– lasting around 90 minutes from their start test time. They will be dismissed from the session. You will be informed immediately of a positive test result.
Students who have not given consent for a test should still attend.
Friday 12th
Test 2 and reintegration
Year 8: 8:30-10:30 Sports Hall
Year 9: 10:45-12:15 Sports Hall
Year 10: 1:15-3:15 Sports Hall*
Students have second test and then return to their form rooms for a reintegration and team building session – lasting around 90 minutes from their start test time. They will be dismissed from the session. You will be informed immediately of a positive test result.
Students who have not given consent for a test should still attend.
*Please note than some forms in Year 10/13/14 may need to say until 4:15pm for their result/pastoral reintegration.

When will the third test take place?
The third lateral flow test will take place during school time on either Monday 15th, Tuesday 16th or Wednesday 17th March – this will be shared with your child after their second test. If the test takes place in period 5, students will be sent home straight after.

Does my child have to be tested?
For the safety of our community, we strongly encourage all students to be tested, however if any student does not wish to consent to take part in testing, they will still be able to attend school unless they develop symptoms.

What about home testing?
In line with government guidance home test kits will be made available for your child and these should be carried out on a Sunday and then 3-5 days afterwards. The school should be notified immediately of a positive test result and you should arrange for a follow up PCR test to confirm the result. More information including how the test is carried out, consent forms and a short video will also be sent to you. The video can be seen here:

Will there be break time and lunchtimes?
For the Lateral flow testing and reintegration sessions in the first week back there will be no break or lunchtime. Students will only attend school for the allocated timetabled session. From Monday 15th March onwards, students will have staggered break and lunchtimes in their year group bubble as they did in September. Each year group will have their own space to be in and allocated time slot to eat, to avoid any unnecessary mixing with other year groups. Please ensure that your child’s on-line lunch account is topped up if they are buying food from school.

What about Free School Meal Vouchers?
We have allocated vouchers already up until Friday 5th March. Students entitled to FSM can collect their vouchers from school for the week of 8th March when they come in for their first test, or pastoral session. These will be in the form of a Sainsburys Gift Voucher.

Will the start and end of the school day timings be the same?
We will be staggering the start and finish times of the school day as we did in September to minimise contact between different year group bubbles of students and parents/carers. We encourage students to walk to school and to only take public transport if absolutely necessary. Parents will not be allowed into the school building unless arranged by prior appointment. Parents/carers may drop their child close to or into the school grounds but should remain in the car. Whilst we want to encourage punctuality, to avoid unnecessary mixing, your child should not arrive before their allocated start time for the week commencing Monday 15th March.

YearTimeEntrance/ExitFinish Time (Wedensday)
78:30amFront Gate3:10 pm (2:25pm)
88:40amSide Gate3:05pm (2:20pm)
98:50amFront Gate (but go to Astro)3:00pm (2:15pm)
108:40amFront Gate3:00pm (2:15pm)
118:30amSide Gate3:05pm (2:20pm)
Sixth Form8:40amSide Gate3:10 pm (2:25pm)

Will the usual school curriculum resume?
We are proud of the broad and balanced curriculum we are able to offer students, and this will resume from Monday 15th March, although some practical activities will have been modified for health and safety purposes. In order to maximise learning in the classrooms, the normal sanctions and rewards will be in operation, staff will issue warnings as well as house points to students.

How will the school support students to ‘catch up’?
We are aware that some students may require some support in catching up with content missed during the lockdown. We have planned for this and recruited additional staff for intervention and will continue to use on-line platforms such as Hegarty Maths for students on a Wednesday afternoon. More detailed information about our catch-up program will follow after Easter.

Will online learning continue?
Online learning will take place whilst we are mass testing the students from Monday 8th to Friday 12th March. All lessons will be set on Skooler.

What about Key Worker Provision?
Key worker provision will be available from Monday 8th to Wednesday 10th March. Due to staff being involved in the reintegration, and us wanting all students to be with their form we will not be offering this service on Thursday 11th or Friday 12th March.

Will my child be expected to socially distance and what hygiene measures will be in place?
As previously mentioned, children will remain in their year group bubble throughout the school day and movement around the building will be minimal. Where possible, students will be socially distanced. Upon arrival, students will line up outside the building on markers, they will sanitise their hands on entry to the building, after a break/movement in the building, and on dismissal. Surfaces will be thoroughly cleaned throughout the day and classrooms will always be ventilated and supplied with tissues, bins and sanitiser. The ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach will be adopted with regards to coughing and sneezing and students will wash their hands after coughing or sneezing.

Does my child have to wear a face mask?
The Government Guidance states that ‘students in secondary schools and colleges are advised to wear face coverings in all areas, including classrooms, where social distancing cannot be maintained and as a temporary extra measure’. As we are unable to maintain a social distance in our classrooms, students will be asked to always wear masks inside the building. They can remove them at break and lunchtimes and in PE lessons. In line with the guidance, this will be reviewed at Easter. We recommend that students bring a couple of masks to school so they can change them after break and lunchtime, we also advise a clear pencil case or something similar to store them in. If there is a significant medical reason why your child should not wear a mask, please put this in writing to the front office and a medical exemption lanyard will be issued. This process still needs to be followed even if your child was previously exempt.

What should my child bring to school?
Students are expected to bring their equipment which includes- a pen, pencil, green pen, ruler planner and reading book. It is also advised that they have a glue stick and some colouring pencils. Equipment checks will resume each morning as part of Form Time. The ‘See it, Hear it, Take it’ rule regarding mobile phones and headphones will remain in place. Mobile phones and headphones should not be seen or heard in the school and if a student does bring their phone in, it must remain off and out of sight. Phones/headphones will be confiscated if this rule is contravened.

Will school uniform be required?
East Barnet School Uniform should be worn. The usual rules with regards to extreme hair styles, unnatural hair colours, false nails and piercings apply, so this letter should give students enough time to prepare for their return to school. Students will be sanctioned for breaches of our school uniform. We also request that students wear appropriate school shoes and not trainers. As the weather is improving, coats will be worn outside but not in the building.

If anyone has difficulty obtaining school uniform, then they should contact their Head of Year as we have some uniform available to lend to students. As the guidance states that PE can resume, students should bring in their East Barnet PE kit on the days they need it.

What happens if my child falls ill at school?
Your child should not attend school if they feel unwell and you should report their absence via the attendance line in the usual way. We will have qualified First Aiders on site and if your child becomes ill, they will go to a medical room and be assessed. You will be contacted.

What happens if there is a confirmed case of coronavirus?
If a child or staff member develops symptoms compatible with coronavirus, they will be sent home, advised to self-isolate for 14 days and instructed to obtain a test. They cannot return until the test result has been received. Close contacts will be sent home and asked to self-isolate until the test result has been confirmed, further advice will be given at that point. In a confirmed case, all close contacts will be sent home. The other household members of that bubble do not need to self-isolate unless the student or staff member they live with subsequently develops symptoms. This is a vital action to ensure the risks are reduced to all staff and students in the school and help prevent the spread of the virus.

Do I have to send my child to school?
The DfE guidance is very clear, and states that school attendance will be “mandatory for all pupils from March 8th”. Unless your child is feeling unwell, or they or a family member are classified as clinically extremely vulnerable then they should be attending school.

If my child/a family member is clinically extremely vulnerable, should I still send my child to school?
The DFE guidance stated that although children are “gradually being removed” from the shielding patients list, those who are confirmed as clinically extremely vulnerable should “shield and stay at home as much as possible until further notice”. If a family member is clinically extremely vulnerable, then you should seek advice from a medical professional, but the child is encouraged to still attend school. Remote learning will continue for those students who are clinically extremely vulnerable and will work with our virtual tutor, Miss Somerville, to keep on top of their studies.

A testing guide for parents can be found by clicking here.

Archived News

All of our archived stories can now be found on our Facebook page – have you seen it? We will only be keeping news from the last couple of years on our website.

Twitter Feed

Recent News

Relationship & Sex Education Consultation
March 31, 2021
A Helpful Message from the Met Police
March 4, 2021
International Women’s Day Poetry Competition
March 3, 2021
d
c