School Closure Update

19 March 2020                                                                                                                     

RE: School closure due to coronavirus

 

Dear Parents and Carers, 

The decision to close schools has been taken by the Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson, and therefore we will be closing at 3:15 on Friday 20th March 2020 as instructed. Further information on provision available to specific groups of children will be provided as soon as it is available.

 We will keep you informed of any national developments via the school website and our social media, including any proposed re-opening date. It is important that we can always make contact with you so that we can keep you up to date with any changes. If your mobile phone number has recently changed, please email info@derbycathedralschool.org.uk with the new details.

 

School Trips 

All residential trips have now been cancelled based on national guidance. We are currently working with both the travel companies and our insurers to obtain full refunds for parents. We will continue to work on this to reach a speedy resolution and get refunds out as soon as possible.

  

Educational arrangements 

To reduce the closure’s effect on education, we have prepared alternative work provisions for students to complete at home. Home learning resources will be available on the school website from Monday 23 March 2020 and will mirror subjects on their usual timetable. 

Work books have been issued to students today with full instructions about how to complete their home learning work. Instructions are also in the home learning work book. If your child is currently absent and has not been issued a work book, you may collect one from Reception today (Thursday 19 March 2020) until 16:30 and tomorrow (Friday 20 March 2020) until 16:00. After this they will be available directly from Reception on Monday 23 March 2020 between the hours of 09:00 – 12 noon.

Students have also been issued with an Outlook email account and we have implemented a central email address for advice and guidance regarding work. This is distancelearning@derbycathedralschool.org.uk. If you are unable to access the internet at home, paper copies of work set will be also available from reception each Monday from 09:00 – 12:00 noon whilst we are closed. 

During the school closure, students whose parents/carers are keyworkers may still attend school in order for critical functions and services to continue. The government are publishing a full list of key worker categories later today. At the time of writing, we understand this to be: NHS staff, police, teachers and delivery drivers. We are also required to make provision for vulnerable children (including those who have a social worker and those with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP)) to still attend school.

 If your child falls into one of these categories they will need to attend school Monday - Friday 08:45 – 3:15, in full uniform with the necessary books and equipment. Please note, this is not an ad-hoc or drop in facility but constitutes regular school attendance. This is due to safeguarding requirements and a duty of care.

 Should your child have a social worker or an EHCP, you may feel that the best place for them at this time of anxiety is at home with you. Schools are being asked to remain open to cater for those with a genuine need, not just because it will be inconvenient to keep them at home. We can assure you that the staff and governors are committed to meeting our responsibilities and will endeavour to manage this situation in the best way to help see us through the current emergency.

 

If you believe that your child meets the criteria to attend school because you or they fall into one of the listed categories, please email info@derbycathedralschool.org.uk by 12:00 noon Friday 20 March 2020 with the following information:

 

  1. Student name and form group.
  2. Parent/carer occupation.
  3. Name and address of employer
  4. Any other relevant information.

 

If you or your child are currently self-isolating and will need to access school at the end of your quarantine period, please inform us of that date to allow us to plan provision by 12:00 noon Friday 20 March 2020 via info@derbycathedralschool.org.uk.

 

Thank you for your cooperation in ensuring the safety of our pupils and staff. If you need to contact the school for any reason during this period of closure, you can do so by emailing us at info@derbycathedralschool.org.uk. We will continue to keep you informed during the closure and update you with any new information about our re-opening date.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Dr P Heery

Interim Headteacher