Outline Plans for Re-Opening in September 2020

On Thursday 2 July, we received guidance from the Government on re-opening plans for September. The guidance is based on the view of the Government that, on balance of risk, it is safe for all pupils to return to full-time education in September. Attendance will be mandatory. A copy of the Government guidance can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/ publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/guidance-for-full-opening-schools

The Government’s guidance comprises public health advice that all schools must follow, as well as guidance that sets out how schools are expected to operate and what they should consider. In summary, this relates to:

  • Prevention including recognising symptoms; isolating in school/home; testing etc.
  • Hand and Respiratory Hygiene including ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’
  • Enhanced cleaning arrangements
  • Minimising contact and maintain social distancing wherever possible: grouping children; measures within the classroom and elsewhere; measures for arrival/dismissal.
  • Active engagement with NHS Test and Trace.

In line with the guidance, and to prepare for re-opening to all pupils, the College is carrying out a full risk assessment covering all of the required preventative and protective measures. In respect of minimising contact, measures will include organising students into year group bubbles and staggering the day (eg. starts, break/lunch and finish times). Please appreciate that, whilst it will not be easy to implement the Government’s guidance, we do need to put these arrangements in place to try to keep everyone as safe as we can and provide the best education possible in these circumstances. It is imperative that all staff, students and parents/carers support these measures.

Communication and Advice

Communication between home and school will be key. In addition to communicating to parents/carers about the arrangements for September, we will also communicate important public health advice. Any individual with symptoms, or symptoms in their household, must remain at home, immediately book a test and inform the College. If a test is positive, staff members and parents/carers must be ready and willing to engage with NHS Test and Trace. Please refer to public health advice.

Hand Hygiene

Everyone is expected to regularly wash their hands. Toilet soap stocks will be checked regularly. Cleaning stations will be located across the College (hand gel, wipes, dispensers etc.) at the entrances and in the ‘year group bubble’ areas. Everyone should sanitise their hands as they enter the building.

Respiratory Hygiene

Everyone will be expected to follow ‘Catch it, Bin it, Kill it’. Movement around the College and classroom layouts will be reorganised to minimise face-to-face contact.

Enhanced Cleaning

Additional cleaning staff will be on site, including during the school day, to ensure more frequent cleaning, including of toilets and high risk contact surfaces. Pupils and staff will wipe down equipment, books and desks etc. after use.

Use of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)

This is not required for educational settings. PPE is only needed where an individual child or young person becomes ill with Covid-19 symptoms at school, and only then if a distance of 2 metres cannot be maintained, or where a child or young person already has routine intimate care needs that involves the use of PPE. There will be procedures in place for safe removal and disposal of PPE.

Minimising Contact - Year Group Bubbles and Designated Areas

Year 7-11 pupils in the main college will be formed into year group bubbles (eg. year 7, year 8, year 9 etc.). These year group ‘bubbles’ will be linked to rooms/areas of the main college building (eg. designated classrooms in one or two school blocks either on the same floor or in close proximity). These areas will be cordoned and pupils will be expected to keep to their designated area. In the event of a fire or emergency, cordons can be safely and easily removed to allow emergency exit.

In addition:

  • Year 7 will be taught in tutor groups for most lessons to minimise contacts. Setting will be delayed.
  • Year 8 setting will be limited and the majority of subjects taught in tutor groups to minimise contacts.
  • Year 9 – 11 pupils will be organised to allow for setting and access to option subjects.

Year 12 and 13 will be organised into one bubble (similar in size to smallest year group in main college). Year 12 Rise@GHC pupils will belong to this Year 12/13 bubble.

LSC Bubble: Students who have spent the majority of their time in the Learning Support Centre (LSC) due to their Special Educational Needs will form a bubble in the LSC. This bubble will learn in the LSC with specialist support. Students not requiring this higher level of support will continue to receive the intervention and support they normally receive via LSC support hubs within each year group bubble.

Year 7-11 pupils at Rise@GHC will form a bubble, but will be kept in tutor groups as far as possible to minimise contacts. Rise@GHC students will not attend any lessons in the main college building until further notice.

Summary of student bubbles and the general locations of bubbles as follows:

 Bubble

Floor

Block/s

Year 7

Ground

A & D

Year 8

1st

A

Year 9

1st

B & D

Year 10

2nd

B & C

Year 11

2nd

A & D

LSC

Ground

LSC

Year 12 / 13

Sixth Form Centre

Rise@GHC Y7-11

Rise@GHC

Students will follow a normal timetable with teachers moving across the year group bubbles to students in classrooms in their designated areas.  At first, although students will have lessons in science and technology, practical activities will be limited for younger year groups, as priority will be given to year groups studying for public examination.  Non-contact PE is permitted, but outside if possible.  Staff movement is permitted across bubbles.  Staff must adhere to social distancing wherever possible and must follow hand/respiratory hygiene advice.

Staggered Start and End Times

Student arrival at the start and dismissal at the end of the day will be staggered as follows:

Year

Arrival Time

Dismissal Time

Gate entrance

Door Entrance / Exit

Cycle shed

7

8.30am

2.55pm

South

Sports / PE

By Sports

8

8.30am

2.55pm

North

Main Inner link

By Reception

9

8.40am

3.10pm

South

Main Inner link

By Reception

10

8.40am

3.10pm

North

B-block (via staff car park)

By Sixth Form

11

8.50am

3.25pm

South

Sports / PE

By Reception

LSC

9.00am

3.15pm

South

A-block / inner link

By Sports

12/13

Arrive 5 mins before lesson

North

Sixth Form

By Sixth Form

Rise@GHC

8.40am

3.00pm dismissal for taxis; 3.15pm for all other Rise students

Students must arrive at these times and by their designated gate/entrance.  Staff will be on duty to greet and usher.  Pupils arriving late, after their designated arrival time with or without a valid excuse, should sign in via Pupil Reception.  Arrangements for late detention will be confirmed.

Timings of the College Day -  Overview:

Arrival/Tutor

8.30am - 9.00am - staggered by year group

Period 1

9.00am - 10.15am

Break

10.15am - 10.20am

Period 2

10.20am - 11.35am

Break

11.35am - 11.40am

Period 3/Lunch

11.40am - 1.40pm - staggered by year group

Period 4

1.40pm - 2.55pm

Tutor/Dismissal

2.55pm - 3.25pm - staggered by year group

Timings of the College Day by Year Group:

 

Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

Year 10

Year 11

6th form

Arrival

8.30

8.30

8.40

8.40

8.50

Arrive 5 mins.

 before first lesson

Tutor

8.30-9.00

8.30-9.00

8.40-9.00

8.40-9.00

8.50-9.00

Period 1

9.00-10.15

9.00-10.15

9.00-10.15

9.00-10.15

9.00-10.15

9.00-10.15

Break

10.15-10.20

10.15-10.20

10.15-10.20

10.15-10.20

10.15-10.20

10.15-10.20

Period 2

10.20-11.35

10.20-11.35

10.20-11.35

10.20-11.35

10.20-11.35

10.20-11.35

Break

11.35-11.40

11.35-11.40

11.35-11.40

11.35-11.40

11.35-11.40

11.35-11.40

Period 3

 

11.40-12.00

11.40-12.20

11.40-12.40

11.40-12.55

11.40-12.55

 Lunch

11.40-12.25

12.00-12.45

12.20-13.05

12.40-13.25

12.55-13.40

12.55-13.40

Period 3

12.25-13.40

12.45-13.40

13.05-13.40

13.25-13.40

 

 

Period 4

13.40-14.55

13.40-14.55

13.40-14.55

13.40-14.55

13.40-14.55

13.40-14.55

Tutor

 

 

14.55-15.10

14.55-15.10

14.55-15.25

Wed 14:55 - 15:15 plus one tutorial

Dismissal

14.55

14.55

15.10

15.10

15.25

After final lesson -

P5 ends at 16:30

 

  • Please note that lunch is staggered over a period of time combined with Period 3.
  • SOSL bubble will take their lunch in their own time in the LSC.
  • Rise@GHC will follow their own timings of the day.

Break and Lunch

Students will take short mid-morning break/s between lessons in their designated area.   All students should bring their own snack/drink and will be allowed to take break/s in their classroom. 

Lunch arrangements for lunch in the main college will be staggered to minimise contact as above.  Rise@GHC students will follow their own lunch schedule. 

The Restaurant in the main college will provide a service for main college pupils only. Year 12 and 13 are to use the servery in the Sixth Form building.  There is a separate restaurant at Rise@GHC. We will take details in advance of those students wishing to use the Restaurant in the main college to ensure sufficient food and refreshment is available.  Students are encouraged to bring a packed lunch to eat in the designated year group area. 

The Restaurant and Terrace area will be cordoned into zones to maintain social distancing between bubbles and enable clean down ready for the next year group bubble.   

Wet break/lunch will use classrooms in designated areas.  All students will be expected not to make physical contact with anyone else, and to sensibly social distance where possible.

Deployment of Staff

The College will consider carefully the flexible deployment of staff, including support staff, to support the re-opening of the school to all pupils full-time from September.  Changes of roles, including the supervision and support of students and contractual duties, will be discussed between staff and line managers. 

Classrooms

As far as possible, classrooms will be forward facing to minimise face to face contact.    Our standard classrooms are already set up with forward facing desks.  Other classrooms, for example science labs, will be re-arranged to forward facing where possible.  Practical lessons in technology workshops may take place with reduced numbers of students to minimise face-to-face contact (initially we will prioritise examination classes and arrangements in Technology will be reviewed after two weeks).  Our IT suites are arranged in side facing rows and can be managed so as to minimise face-to-face contact.  Other rooms that cannot be set up to minimise face-to-face contact (eg. enhanced rooms with central IT pods) will not be used to deliver the normal timetable, but may be used for support and small group work (eg. catch up tuition). 

Students will be advised to avoid close contact face-to-face conversations as far as possible, and to use ‘six-inch voices’ (low volume) to talk when directed by their teacher.  The front row of desks in classrooms will be set back to ensure distancing from the teacher.

All classrooms in use will be supplied with a cleaning pack.  Door propped open and windows open where possible.  Expectations will be displayed in all classrooms.

Seating Plans

Teachers will use a seating plan for every lesson and this will be recorded and retained for use in the event of a NHS Test and Trace enquiry. 

Equipment

Lockers will not be available initially.  Students should only bring essentials to school, including lunch boxes, tools for learning (including a set of colouring pencils), books etc.  Staff and students will be required to bring their own personal equipment and this must not be shared.  Students are advised to cover their exercise books with clear sticky back plastic.

On a day when students have a practical PE lesson, they should arrive at school dressed in their PE kit (with tracksuit or similar over the top). 

Students and teachers can take books and other shared resources home, but must avoid unnecessary sharing.  General school equipment (for example text books or apparatus) may be shared within a year group bubble, but must be cleaned/wiped down after use.  Students will be expected to clean shared equipment at the start and end of use.

One-Way System

One-way systems will also operate where possible, including in the year group designated areas.

External Visitors

External visits will be controlled and limited to minimise contact.  All visitors will be advised of Covid-19 procedures on arrival. If a pupil needs picking up, one adult on site or remain in car and the pupil will be escorted out.  Parents/carers are politely requested not to come onto the College site for any reason, including drop off and pick up, without prior appointment/notification.

Behaviour Policy and Sanctions

The College’s Behaviour Policy will be revised to reflect the protective arrangements and measures being taken, including the restrictions on movement within the College and hygiene arrangements.  Students who breach these arrangements or behave in a way that puts themselves or others at risk and will be sanctioned as appropriate.  Behaviour Support will operate in each year group bubble.

Assemblies

There will be no assemblies in the normal way.  Any Character and Culture assembly and tutorial work will be delivered in tutor groups in classrooms.

Off-site and Extra-curricular Activities

Trips and off-site activities will not take place until further notice.  Extra-Curricular activities may be permitted on the College’s site within the year group bubbles.  A register will be taken as normal.  Sports fixtures against other schools are not currently permitted.

Travel

Students are advised to walk or cycle if possible and to observe social distancing rules when travelling to and from school.  Students should travel directly to school and then straight home at the end of the school day.  Students are not to congregate or wait for friends.  Pupils cycling must wear a cycle helmet, use cycle paths and bring a lock to store their cycle securely in the cycle shed designated for their year group bubble.

Attendance

The Government has advised that from September 2020, attendance at school is mandatory.  Normal attendance and absence procedures apply, including when students are isolating or staying at home with Covid-19 symptoms pending test result.

Remote Learning

Remote learning will continue through the use of Microsoft Teams to make provision for students isolating or staying at home with Covid-19 symptoms pending test result.

School Uniform

Pupils are expected to wear normal school uniform.  The guidance from the Government is that uniforms/PE kit do not need to be cleaned any more often than usual or using methods which are different from normal.

Managing Suspected and Confirmed Cases

The College will adhere to national public health guidance.  All members of the College community, including staff, students and parents/carers, are expected to fully engage with NHS Test and Trace.  Staff and students must not come into school if symptoms develop and must be sent home to self-isolate if they develop them in school.  Anyone who displays symptoms of Covid-19 can and should get a test. Staff and parents/carers should advise the College immediately of the test result/s. 

Suspected cases at school will be isolated in the Meeting Room and students will be sent home/collected immediately and instructed to isolate and arrange a test.  Staff and parents/carers should inform the College of the outcome of the test and, if positive, the household should follow national guidance.

In the event that we become aware that someone who has attended school has tested positive for Covid-19, we will contact the local health protection team.  Equally, the local health protection team will contact the College directly if they become aware that someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 attended the school.  In any case, the College will work with the local health protection team, following their advice and taking the action required.  Registers and seating plans will be used to help determine who may have been in ‘close contact’.  If advised, we will send home those people who have been in close contact with the person who has tested positive, advising them to self-isolate for 14 days since they were last in close contact with that person when they were infectious. In the guidance, close contact means:

  • direct close contacts – face to face contact with an infected individual for any length of time, within 1 metre, including being coughed on, a face to face conversation, or unprotected physical contact (skin-to-skin)
  • proximity contacts - extended close contact (within 1 to 2 metres for more than 15 minutes) with an infected individual
  • travelling in a small vehicle, like a car, with an infected person

As per the guidance, two or more cases may be considered an outbreak and this may involve precautionary isolations using the College’s bubble system.  The guidance advises that school closure is not generally necessary unless advised.