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Heath Mount Primary School

Welcome toHeath Mount Primary School

Advice and Information

 

Coronavirus Update

26.03.2020

We have information coming through on Free school meal vouchers. 

Supporting schools with access to supplying free school lunches.

Following on from Government guidance, Sodexo are here to help local authorities, schools, parents and students access free school lunches by supplying supermarket eVouchers, that can be spent locally to you. Birmingham City Council are working in partnership with Sodexo to distribute digital supermarket eVouchers via an online redemption platform for your parents to select their local supermarket including Sainsbury’s, Asda, Morrisons and many more participating. 

 

HOW IT ALL WORKS FOR PARENTS

1. Parent receives their digital eVoucher cheque which will have their cheque number and validation code

2. Parents go to www.vouchershopexchange.co.uk and enters their cheque number and validation code

3. Parents then chooses which supermarket eVoucher they would like, you must spend your full cheque value at once.

4. Parent then completes the form with their email address and submits the order.

5. The eVoucher is sent instantly to the parent’s email address, they then spend it in store either by presenting their mobile or printed version.

 

All supermarkets have exclusions including alcohol, tobacco, lottery tickets and fuel - funds must be spent on essential supplies for children free school meal purposes

25.03.2020

Dear Parents,

I hope this finds you and your family well.  It’s just day 3 of our new ‘normal’ and for many of us it feels far from normal.   We have however been encouraged by so many positive messages from members of our school community, the engagement of the children attending the emergency key worker childcare and hearing of exceptional home learning from our children in school. It has really put a smile on the faces of the staff in school. Thank you. 

 

I am sure you will join me in thanking the whole Heath Mount Staff team for the efforts made to ensure this unprecedented experience for us all has been handled with upmost professionalism. Each and every member of the team has pulled together and are committed, as ever, to ensuring your child/ren are getting the best deal possible in these unusual circumstances.

We are sharing examples of positive learning in school on our Twitter feeds over the coming days.  Please make sure you follow us at @Heathmount.  

 

The class teachers will be ringing each of our families next week to ensure you are well. These phone calls will be brief as each teacher has a number of calls to make. If you are in need of help in anyway let them know and we will do our best to support you.

 

Government Briefing

Yesterday’s briefing came from Matt Hancock Secretary of State for Health and Social Care who thanked NHS staff along with those in social care.  He explained that retired nurses and doctors are returning to work along with Medical and Nursing students who will shortly qualify.  A call for 250,000 volunteers to support the work of the NHS was also announced, with more details promised in the coming days.

Further details on the coronavirus can be found by going to the link below.

https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

As we all try and adjust to this temporary way of life, please do remember to look after yourselves, your family members, your friends and neighbours- a quick call or message to check in on them could make a big difference.

Stay safe.

 

The Heath Mount Team

20.03.2020

Dear Parents/Carers,

Staffing in school is understandably changing daily due to people becoming unwell with coronavirus symptoms or through self-isolation (both 14 days and 12 weeks).  We received the key worker guidance in the early hours this morning (20th March) and looking through it presents many challenges and raises lots of questions for you and us.  We will only know staffing capacity on a daily basis and we need to cap numbers so we can observe social distancing as much as possible.

Link to the guidance

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision

It stresses if you can keep your child at home then you should do so, stating that:

Parents should also do everything they can to ensure children are not mixing socially in a way which can continue to spread the virus. They should observe the same social distancing principles as adults.

Matt Hancock stressed on BBC breakfast news this morning, ‘stay home to save lives’. 

We urge you to think about any options you have available to you so that your child can remain at home accessing the resources we provided. 

The experience in school over the coming weeks will not be the usual educational one.  Schools are now tasked with child care for those key workers who have no other options.

If you are a key worker and have no other option and you need childcare in a school then please email us at enquiry@heathmount.co.uk to help us prioritise provision.

Please give details of:

·         Your job role and the organisation you work for

·         Whether you are a sole parent or if both of you are key workers

·         Details of your child – name, class and age.

·         Anything else that you think is relevant.

If we do not receive your email we will assume that you do not need childcare at a school.  Emails should go to enquiry@heathmount.co.uk and have the word keyworker in the subject line.

Requests will be processed over the weekend and we will be able to inform whether or not we can accommodate your child/ren at Heathmount Primary School or where the nearest provision will be. 

We will get this information out to you when we have an accurate grasp of staffing and pupil numbers. 

We recognise that this a challenging time for us all and thank you for your ongoing support.

Take care

Mrs Fance

 

19.03.2020

Dear Parents/carers

Our thoughts and best wishes go out to you all whether you are in self-isolation, bringing your children into school or have concerns about the risks to loved ones.

Today’s pupil numbers in both schools have dropped again with very few pupils attending school.   The challenge that we are working on now is determining the number of children with key worker parents.  

Key Workers

Key workers have been outlined by the government and include; NHS staff, police and supermarket delivery drivers, we are awaiting a full list from the DFE. In order to establish who our key workers are we ask that you send in some form of ID (staff badge, company letterhead addressed to you, payslip, etc) Both parents must be key workers. We need to limit the amount of children in schools in order to combat this virus. Please send this to enquiry@heathmount.bham.sch.uk once we have this information, we can confirm your child’s attendance. If you have any queries please contact the school office.

Free School Meal Pupils (Pupil Premium)

If your child is eligible for pupil premium funding we will give you details on how to collect your child’s free school meal following school closure. Any queries ring the office.

Self-Isolation

A reminder about the timescales for self-isolation can be viewed by clicking the link below:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/self-isolation-advice/

People in the high-risk category should isolate themselves for 12 weeks and guidance on this including a list of the medical conditions can be found here:   

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people/guidance-on-social-distancing-for-everyone-in-the-uk-and-protecting-older-people-and-vulnerable-adults

Learning from Home

We have set up an area on our website where you can access home learning for your child. There is a wealth of material to access with both online activities, as well as other practical ideas. These have been split into year groups. Of course there’s nothing stopping you accessing the learning from other year groups, if you think it is appropriate for your child. As well as homework you will find other updates regarding coronavirus. You will find all this here: https://heathmountprimary.org.uk/ Parents, communication

Ongoing Communication

We are all entering into uncertain times and it therefore crucial, that when we do receive updates from the DFE about school closure, that we pass them on to you. We will do this via our website https://heathmountprimary.org.uk

We will add any correspondence on here as and when we have it and will notify you via text that this has taken place. I am sure there will be a lot information being passed around over the next few weeks but please make sure you get your source directly from us, as speculation of what might be happening in our school. We will notify you via text if we need to So if you do not hear from us, please assume things remain the same.

Maintaining Contact

During the period of closure, school have been asked to make telephone contact with all pupils, to please expect a call from a member of staff throughout the period of absence. Please can you ensure all email and telephone contact details are up to date. If changes need to be made, please email enquirey@heathmount.bham.sch.uk with your details.

Daily Government Briefing

Today’s briefing from the Prime Minister focused on timescales, turning the tide in the next 12 weeks, vaccine trials and a possible antibody test which will tell the user if they have already had the virus.

 

These are unprecedented times and I would like to reiterate that we are following all advice given. Thank you for your continued support in these extremely challenging times, as we continue to prioritise the wellbeing of our children.

 

Stay safe and I sincerely look forward to welcoming you back into school in due course.

The Heath Mount Team

 

Coronavirus update 18.03.20

Dear Parents/carers

I hope everyone is in good health and that everyone is doing their best to take care of one another.  Thank you for the messages of support for the school – we feel privileged to work with a fantastic team of staff, fabulous children and supportive parents.

Today we had just over 22% of pupils absent in school mostly self-isolating with and without the Coronavirus symptoms.  After emailing a number of head teachers in the Birmingham area this morning this appears to be the same as many schools.  We also have higher than usual staff absence, some of them within the high-risk category who will be self-isolating for 12 weeks and some staff away for 14 days in isolation. As you can appreciate this is putting a strain on the school.

Diagnosis

We appreciate that it is hard for families to make the decision to decide whether their child/children have Coronavirus symptoms, especially now that the testing regime has changed.  Only you can make that decision around self-isolation or if you are in a high-risk group - we urge you to follow the NHS guidelines. Excessive questioning of school staff increases pressure.  In this current pandemic, we would urge everyone to remain cautious and follow the guidance from NHS 111 online.

If your child or anyone in your household displays Coronavirus symptoms (cough or high temperature) then you should all self-isolate for 14 days.  If you are in a high –risk category (pregnant, receiving chemotherapy, diabetic over 70 years old or any conditions where you have a weakened immune system) then you should be self-isolating for 12 weeks.   Please be assured that these absences are authorised.

Covering Classes

Due the absence rates of staff and pupils, we will have to make some tough decisions so that we maintain safe staff pupil ratios.  What this may mean is that children will be combined to form new classes.  Where we can, we will keep children within the same year group, however, there may come a time where we have classes of mixed year groups.  Naturally we will risk assess these situations in view of the numbers and the size of the room etc. 

If matters escalate further, we could be in a year group rotation scenario, where a given year group gets a few days in school a week.  We would try and avoid closing a year group down, as we feel it is important to touch base with all year groups in school on at least on a weekly basis during term time.  I appreciate that some of this seems extreme but we would rather share this information with you now to keep you well informed during this difficult time. Long term we really do not know what we are dealing with in terms of staff and pupil absences.

Daily Government Briefing

Yesterday's briefing focused on the economic impact on the country and measures to address it.

Home learning

https://www.heathmountprimary.co.uk/home-learning-1/

We have provided all children with home learning packs and exercise books. If you did not receive one, you may collect one from the school office. Remember, the packs are also on our school website, under the children home learning section. 

 

Thank you for your ongoing support and co-operation

Mrs D Fance

Update: 17.03.2020

Our highest priority is the health and well-being of the children and staff.  During the COVID-19 outbreak, we are following Public Health England’s advice carefully.  

Thankfully experts suggest children are not particularly vulnerable to the virus.  It remains of the highest importance that we do all we can to protect each other and slow the virus.  

 

Your child’s school is open.  If they are well, they do not have a serious underlying health condition, and no one at home has symptoms, they are required to be in school.   

Click here - Guidance for schools 

 

Children, young people and staff should stay at home for 14 days if they are unwell with a new, continuous cough or a high temperature to avoid spreading infection to others. Otherwise they should attend school as normal. 

Click here - Guidance on social distancing & those with underlying health conditions 

 

Public Health England are recommending everyone follows social distancing advice, especially if your child or someone in your household has an underlying health condition.  Social distancing involves avoiding: contact with someone with symptoms, non-essential use of public transport, gatherings with friends, families, and large groups.   

Click here - Guidance for households with possible Coronavirus infection 

 

If your child, or someone you live with, has symptoms, then all household members must stay at home and not leave for 14 days.  If your condition gets worse, or your symptoms do not get better after 7 days, then use the NHS 111 online.  In an emergency, dial 999.  

 

Updates 

Your school will keep you up to date on the latest, and please return to the website for further news.  

Thank you for your support and understanding.  

 
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