Dear Parents and Carers
I hope that you are all well and settled into slightly new routines. I find it hard to believe that we are already in week five of the new school year. The past weeks seem to have been swamped with guidance, new guidance and even newer guidance. I am sure that this will be the same for many of you as you return to work and other activities. However, overall the return to school has gone really well and I would like to take this opportunity to thank you again for your understanding and support. I shared with HT colleagues the fact that we have an ever growing pile of unclaimed lost property, that someone was ‘accidentally’ unkind to someone else, that the photocopier continues to breakdown and that we have had a sandwich in the toilet makes everything seem very normal.
I have attempted to provide some updated information below so please do take the time to read through it – despite its length. As always, whilst we are unable to welcome parents and carers into school we do continue to have an ‘open door’ policy. If you have any concerns or questions simply drop us an email or call the office.
Health & Safety
Our main driving force with H & S is to keep everyone safe by reducing the possibility of infection whilst ensuring wellbeing is not being compromised. We aim to minimise the number of contacts between children and children and children and adults whilst also allowing school to function and the children to enjoy learning.
Our staff Health & Safety grp meets weekly to ensure we are up to date with guidance and to discuss our practice in relation to our risk assessments. These are dynamic and are adapted accordingly. Clear information has been shared with staff in relation to the symptomatic room, the correct use of cleaning products, appropriate action regarding resources, distancing adult to adult, the wearing of face coverings, the need for well ventilated learning spaces and the cleaning regime provided by facilities management. Any concerns are actioned accordingly.
Outdoor learning is a priority and will continue to be so even as the weather changes. All children need to have an appropriate outdoor jacket in school every day. Please do get in touch if you need support with this. PE continues to be taught outdoors and singing only takes place in same class groups, outdoors, distanced and with the children all facing the same way.
Many thanks to the parents and carers of P1 and P2 who wear masks when entering the playground. This is much appreciated by everyone.
As the letter last week stated, children displaying cold symptoms are welcome to come to school if they are well enough to do so. We would ask that a common sense approach is taken.
Children continue to have their packed lunches in their classrooms. Older pupils who are willing, and whose parents / carers have given permission for them to do so, are being a great help by cleaning tables after lunches are eaten. As I am sure you will appreciate some children eat in minutes and are desperate to get out to play whilst others love to chat and eat more slowly! To ensure both lunch supervision and playground support children have 15 minutes to eat lunch and then PSAs and children go to the playground.
Food in schools
With current COVID restrictions we ask that no baking or other food items are brought into school for sharing. (Believe me when I say this is a great miss to the staff as our pupil bakers regularly bring in something for the staff to try!)
Bikes and Scooters
Children are actively encouraged to walk, cycle or scoot to school. Unfortunately if leaving bikes etc in school these are at your own risk. A lock is helpful. Children are asked not to touch any items that do not belong to them.
With no name on items of clothing, lunch boxes etc we are unable to return them to children. We are unable to store lost property so ask that you write your child’s name on what they wear / bring to school. See below for the list of items from last week alone. If you recognise something from the list please get in touch.
As you are aware we are unable to allow access to the school building for parents and carers. It is so helpful to everyone if children arrive at school and get picked up at the correct times. The last couple of weeks have seen a significant increase in the number of forgotten items being dropped off at school – lunch boxes, jackets, water bottles etc. When this happens office staff have to answer the phone and walk to the school gates to collect the items. This has a significant impact on their workload. Please help us by making sure your child has everything they need before they leave the house.
If you decide to travel abroad with your child and the country is already on, or is placed on, the quarantine list children are not allowed to attend school for 14 days. It is essential that you inform school if this is the case.
What will happen if a positive case is confirmed at our school?
We have had several pupils and staff tested and, thankfully, all have shown a negative result. However, we cannot be complacent and a positive case may occur in the future. Please be reassured that clear procedures are in place with support from Health Protection Scotland and City of Edinburgh Council. Each case is dealt with on a case by case basis and decisions regarding track and trace made by a team of professionals. Communication regarding the situation will be carefully managed as unfortunately it can be very easy for incorrect information to be shared, particularly through social media.
Whilst we all hope that school will remain open, there is the possibility that certain classes or stages may have to isolate for a period of time. We are in the process of preparing our blended learning strategy and will share this in more detail with parents and carers next week along with our virtual Meet the Teacher opportunity. Our strategy will involve the use of Twitter as a means of communication from adult to adult (it is not intended to be used by the children), the use of Teams and the use of the school website alongside phone conversations. Look out for further details next week.
During lockdown the children were promised a Rainbow Party on their return to school. I had hoped that we would all be able to celebrate in true Trinity Together fashion but unfortunately we are going to have to compromise (another good skill to learn). Given we are unsure when we will be able to gather together the house captains feel we need to party now! To this end Friday September 18th will be our Rainbow Party morning along with our MADD about Heroes celebration. Children are very welcome to come to school dressed in any, some, all of the colours of the rainbow. It will be our first party using Teams so we’ll have our fingers crossed that the internet doesn’t let us down!
Thank you, again, for persevering to the end of this rather long email. An action for myself is to communicate more regularly and with less content.