13th March 2020

Dear Parent/Carer

REACH School Coronavirus Contingency Planning

The government has publicised widely that we all have a responsibility to take steps to reduce and delay the impact of the current coronavirus outbreak. I wanted to let parents know what action the school is taking to support those aims, and to reassure them that we are taking the outbreak extremely seriously.

We are planning for the worst but working towards the best by making sure we have prevention measures in place, and preparing contingency plans for staff and students. We will follow all instructions and advice from Public Health England, Birmingham City Council and the Department for Education.

To try to reduce the rate the virus spreads, we have reminded all students on hand hygiene and shared the government advice on staying safe.

All staff and students need to:

  • Wash their own hands frequently
  • Avoid unnecessary contact (no shaking hands)
  • Avoid touching their face
  • Sneeze and cough into the crook of their elbow (not their hands)
  • Put used tissues in the bin.

I would ask that you as parents please help by informing the school in the usual way if your child is feeling unwell, especially with a cough or raised temperature. If they are exhibiting these symptoms, then please keep them at hone for the 7 days that the government are advising.

Please also inform us if your child or member of the family has been in contact with someone from a category 1 area, or someone who has tested positive for Corona virus. Members of the public who have been in contact with the virus in this way are advised to call NHS helpline 111 and self-isolate for 14 days.

Please see this government website for more information: www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus- covid-19/

If a number of pupils and staff are affected by the virus and are required to be absent from school, we may have to take the decision to send groups of pupils home so that we can safely accommodate the remainder. If this is the case, priority will be given to Year 11, who are closest to their exams. Parents will be informed by text if we have to send pupils home, so please let the school know if you have changed your contact details recently and not yet updated the school.

The school may in the future be required to close because of the coronavirus following instructions from Public Health England, and we may have to close at short notice. Again, parents will be informed by text and a message posted on the website.

During any school closure, pupils can continue with school work. All pupils have access to Active Learn and to My Maths and all subjects are currently preparing revision packs to be sent home for students.

If Year 11 pupils wish to contact their teachers by email, then they must let us know and we will ensure they have a REACH School email account. Emails from other addresses will not be responded to.

Be aware, though, that if a member of staff is unwell themselves, or having to care for a poorly member of the family, they may not be able to respond to the email.

During any school closure, the school will continue to communicate with pupils and parents via texts and the school website. Please check regularly for updated messages.

At the time of writing, the school has been informed that exams in the summer are going ahead as planned, and so pupils should continue to work hard to prepare for these. If that news changes, we will keep you informed.

Thank you for your understanding and co-operation in helping us at REACH School to do our part in keeping everybody safe and well.