COVID-19 Blog

Wednesday July 15th 2020

RCT Letter re September

Friday July 10th 2020

September return update 

Return to school update 

It has been lovely returning to school this week and seeing most of our pupils who were able to come in. They have been a real credit to you and have settled back so well. The organisation for their return has run like clockwork and this is down to the cooperation and help for all our parents. We thank you for your help.

I would also like to pay tribute to all our staff who have worked so hard to ensure that the return to school is a happy experience for the pupils.

We are looking forward next week to building on the success of this week. Hopefully more pupils will return to school now that they can see we have developed a safe return to school.

Reports and information regarding next year will be sent out soon. This year all reports will be sent out digitally, however if any parent cannot access then via the dojo system, hard copies will be available. Reports will differ slightly from last year but they will provide you with a basic overview of your child's progress up to March  2020.

Class information for September 2020 will be sent out during the last week of term.

Sadly, the nursery graduation ceremony which is so popular with our little ones and our parents cannot go ahead due to the restrictions. 

We will however be attempting to organise something to celebrate our yr 6 pupils who will be leaving us for pastures new in September. More information to follow.

Mr G.Evans

Letter sent 23 June:

 

Dear Parent,

Re Hub Provision from June 29th 2020 and return to school

 

Return to School from Monday 29th

Measures are now in place for the safe return of our pupils from the 29th. You will have received information regarding the day your child can return to school. This cannot be amended. Please could you remind your child(ren) of the need to socially distance when coming to and during school.

Signage will assist you and the pupils when entering and leaving school.

Please also be reminded of the following:-

  • All pupils will have temperature checks before going into class. Those with a temperature exceeding 38 will be isolated and sent home. Please ensure that someone is available to be contacted throughout the day
  • All pupils will use hand sanitisers throughout the day
  • Ensure your child(ren) brings a packed lunch
  • Pupils in receipt of free school meals will be provided with a packed lunch
  • Pupils must follow rules and procedures
  • Please follow markings when entering or leaving school
  • Unfortunately pupils who may be upset when coming to school cannot be taken by the staff as we normally would do. It will be the parents’ responsibility to ensure the pupil enters school
  • Your patience and cooperation will be appreciated by the staff especially for the first few days when procedures will be new and pupils might be a little anxious.

This is the guidance from the local education authority regarding hub provision:

Emergency Childcare Provision

Current hub schools will close and emergency childcare provision for the children of key / essential workers and particularly vulnerable pupils between the ages of 3-14 (3-19 in special schools) will be provided in their own school from Monday 29 June onwards. Schools will offer this provision alongside the reopening of schools.

 Applications for emergency childcare provision will need to be made on a regular basis by key / essential workers for the days and times required. Applications for the period commencing 27 June will open at 8am on Friday 19 June and close at 11:59pm on Sunday 21 June. No late applications will be accepted. Emergency childcare places will be strictly limited, are subject to availability and should only be applied for as a last resort Evidence of your key / essential worker status may be required. Making an application does not guarantee an emergency childcare place

 From 29 June, schools will offer emergency childcare provision between the hours of 8:00am – 5:00pm for children of key / essential workers and for core school hours for vulnerable learners.

 Parents/ carers of particularly vulnerable learners requiring a new placement will need to make one application for emergency childcare for the period commencing Monday 29 June through to the end of the summer term.

 All vulnerable learners currently attending an emergency childcare setting will be relocated to their usual school setting from Monday 29 June. Their place will be available each day (Monday to Friday) for core school hours, unless advised otherwise. If a place is not required, the parent / carer should advise the school.

 Emergency childcare provision is available to nursery aged children within their current school setting.

 Arrangements for the pupils who have been accepted:-

  • Pupils may access the hub provision from 8:00am – 5pm
  • Registration will take place in the new hall
  • Pupils cannot access hub provision and school based provision on the same day
  • Pupils will be cared for in designated classes.
  • They will not integrate with other pupils who are accessing school based provision
  • Hubs will be staffed by teaching assistants in a childcare not teaching capacity.

 

 

Yours sincerely,

 Mr G.D.Evans

 

 

**Return to school update** 

Good afternoon,

I hope you are all well.

During the lockdown period we have appreciated your continued support the efforts you have made to maintain contact with the class teachers in order help your child/ren complete the home tasks.

Over the next two weeks we will be preparing the school for the return of our pupils and we fully appreciate that you will have to make a decision whether to send your child to school or not.

As Kirsty Williams said on Wednesday, it is entirely up to you to decide if you wish to send your child/children to school and there will be no criticism of your decisions as parents/carers.

Guidance from Welsh Government on how schools can re-open will be circulated as soon as possible.. However, I would like to share a few of our early plans with you:

 

  • School will restart for most pupils from Monday June 29th with approximately 1/3 of pupils attending school at any one time.
  • All pupils will have an opportunity to spend at least a day at school once a week for four weeks – i.e. all pupils will have four visits to school before the summer break
  • Pupils will be in groups of between 6 – 8 pupils depending on class size
  • One teacher and Teaching Assistant (younger year groups) will stay with your child’s group throughout the day
  • The outdoor space will be used as much as possible
  • Pupils will be sat in individual spaces at 2 metres apart
  • All excess furniture will be cleared from teaching spaces – classrooms will be very minimalist
  • Basic resource packs will be issued to all pupils
  • As most pupils will be coming to school once per week, we will expect them to wear school uniform.
  • From Monday 29th, we will not be providing a breakfast club. This will however be resumed in September.
  • Pupils who use school transport will do so in the normal manner they did before lockdown. Companies will ensure social distance measures are in place.
  • All surfaces will be wiped down regularly during the school day
  • There will be a staggered start, finish, break and lunch time
  • A one-way system will be set up in the main school building
  • A robust Risk Assessment will be in place

When we receive official information from the education minister, we will give detailed guidelines on when and how different year groups and classes will return. Where possible we will try and ensure siblings come to school on the same day.

As we plan the way forward, I would like to assure you that your child’s safety and well-being is our priority and is paramount in all our decision making.

Many thanks for your co-operation,

Kind regards,

Mr G.Evans

Letter re Hub Applications for child care   June 4th 2020

Dear Parent/Guardian,

RE Emergency childcare for vulnerable and essential key worker pupils

 

As you will be aware the education minister announced yesterday that there would be a return to school on Monday June 29th. More detailed information will follow as the guidance becomes clear.

We are busy preparing for this and making sure we create a safe working environment for both pupils and staff. Approximately 1/3 of pupils will be admitted to school on any one day and this includes the number of key worker children who may access a hub placement.

For the past 6 weeks ,we have had an average of between 8-10 pupils who have regularly attended from Dolau. However this week and next week numbers have trebled and if this trend continues then provision for all children from June 29th will be affected.

We fully appreciate that as the lock down restrictions ease, more parents will be returning to work. However, we cannot operate as a childcare facility and as a school if this continues. We have evidence that a number of parents are applying for hub places when they are either furloughed, working from home or on shift patterns when one parent is still at home.

You will appreciate that in order to maintain a safe environment as much as possible, we need a large number of staff to ensure pupil adult ratios are kept to an acceptable level. Pupils and staff need safe distancing measures to keep safe and my fear is if the number of applications increase as they have done for emergency care then this will not happen.

Therefore, when we start back to school, we will be asking parents only to use the hub facility if it is absolutely necessary to do so. Parents will be challenged to produce the evidence that there is no one available at home to look after their children.

I make no apologies for taking this approach. Our main concern is that all pupils attending school have an equal chance to come to school on their designated days. If the number of hub children increase then this will be considerably reduced.

Please could you take this into consideration when applying in future for emergency childcare provision. We have a data base of regular attendees who have genuine reasons for requesting childcare. From next week all new applications will be challenged.

 

Thank you for your support and understanding in this matter.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Mr Evans

June 3rd 2020   - Update re School opening on June 29th 2020 

Following the announcement that pupils will return to school in some format  from June 29th, we will notify all parents/guardians of our proposals as soon as possible.

 The following information will provide parents with a timetable of actions :-

  • This week  -publish statement and guidance when available
  • Next two weeks 
  • Establish which groups of pupils /classes will attend each day
  • Establish start and finish times for each class
  • Ensure social distance measures are in place throughout the school with appropriate signage 
  • Communicate via text to parents and class dojo, all necessary information 
  • Establish arrangements for essential key workers 
  • Ensure that there are appropriate procedures in place to ensure that the environment is as safe as possible with regard to cleaning ,hygiene and infection control

May 19th 2020

A decision has been made by the LA to open Dolau as an additional Hub for emergency and key workers.

Please note that the criteria for  use of the hub still remains the same and we will strictly adhere to this.

People who are eligible can register via the LA website. All new applications will be asked to verify status and will be challenged as the message remains the same.Stay at home  wherever possible.

 

Many Thanks 

 

Mr Evans 

 

May 13th 2020

 

Dear Parent / Guardian

 

The document below includes additional wellbeing resources which may be of use during this period:

 

Covid19 - Resources 11.05.20.pdf

 

May 8th 2020

 

Dear Parent/Guardian

 

Please find below another Wellbeing pack which you may find useful:

 

 Wellbeing Pack Three - Mindfulness and Relaxation.pdf

 

Keep Safe

 

May 6th 2020

 Dear Parent/Guardian,  

 

There are a number of well being packs below which might be of some use during this period. As yet there is no further information as to when we are likely to return but we will update as soon as information is available.

 

Keep Safe 

 

Mr Evans 

Well being pack - Relationships

Well being Pack - Diet and Exercise

 

April 28th 2020

Covid-19 update

 

Dear Parent/Guardian

Re Update on Covid -19

 

Hope you are all fit and healthy and free from this horrible virus.

All things are going well in school and the staff as you would expect have been fantastic, always responding in great numbers to any request. 

We have a few staff who are shielding family members and are in total lock down until mid June .Fortunately,they are all well.

Nearly all staff have supported the key worker families by making themselves available on the staff rota's both in school and at the Llanhari hub.

Staff have also been in school carrying out cleaning duties on all the IT devices we have in school in preparation for when pupils return. In addition to this they are attending school next week to prepare their classes for September and to complete a number of maintenance tasks around the school.

Some of you will also have seen their message to the pupils on Twitter.

By the end of the week we will have data, on the levels of engagement in each class. All staff are carefully monitoring this to ensure that vulnerable pupils are contacted and that they are provided with appropriate support, where applicable. Our ALNCO, has also called or messaged many pupils to monitor their well being.

Staff have provided pupils with a range of activities on line and they are in regular contact with their classes.

The school management team,conduct meetings through Zoom and these have been helpful in preparing for the return of our pupils, whenever this is ,but also for September.

Next week we will be contacting any pupils/parents who are not engaging with the on line communication and will be providing support where needed.

 

In testing times I cannot praise the efforts of our staff enough, over 55 in total, for their continued dedication and support .

 

Once we have details of any return to school I will contact you asap.

 

Keep Safe 

 

Mr Evans 

 

April 14th 2020

Just a quick update for all parents and carers.

From next week our staff will be back on duty at the Llanhari Hub. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all our staff for the commitment they have shown over the last three weeks, along with all the other staff from our cluster schools.

Teachers will be making contact with you all via Dojo to outline activities you can do with your children. 

Please continue to keep safe and use the facilities at the Llanhari hub if it is essential. 

I hope all our pupils are behaving for you and showing what they can do on-line.

 

Best wishes 

 

Mr Evans 

April 5th 2020

I hope you are all keeping safe during this difficult time.  We are now officially on our Easter holidays, however child care for the front line emergency workers will continue at LLanhari Comprehensive. The provision last week was excellent and pupils who attended were looked after superbly as you would expect.

I would like to thank all the parents who adhered to the government guidelines regarding  the use of childcare facilities,  by keeping their children at home . The provision will remain for all the key health workers and those in front line services so that parents are able to go to work to support our health service. We will continue to support our families in any way we can and normal communication will continue after the Easter break, from April 20th.

For any parent  needing to contact the school, you can still do this via our  email address which is continually monitored.

Hoping you all keep safe.

 

Mr Evans 

March 27th 2020

Urgent!

Any parent who has applied for emergency childcare next week starting March 30th must now report to our school (Dolau) not to Llanhari as originally planned.

The school will be open from 8:00am until 6pm.

Please note, that any parent working from home should not be using the emergency childcare service and will be challenged if we believe this is the case. Our aim is to support the front line staff in the NHS and support services and all other emergency services .

There may be slight delays on Monday as parents will be required to complete and sign registration forms.

 

Thank you all for your cooperation .

Mr Evans 

 

March 26th 2020

Dear Parent,


Details of childcare arrangements are set out in this letter. Please read carefully.

Please note that the care is for urgent childcare only.

Parents and carers to complete the on-line application form for emergency childcare which is now live on the Council website. The safest place for their children to be cared for is in their home this would be appreciated. However, for those essential workers and vulnerable families who require urgent childcare, this is now available on a hub basis. The link is as follows https://www.rctcbc.gov.uk/EN/Resident/EmergenciesSafetyandCrime/InformationforResidentsCoronavirus/SchoolClosuresandadviceforparents.aspx
Initial applications are needed by midday on Friday.

Parents are to report to their chosen HUB school which in our case is Ysgol Llanhari. Every parent/guardian of a child accessing the Hub MUST complete a registration form on the first day of admission. A failure to comply with this request will result in the offer of a placement being withdrawn.

The hubs will be open between 8:00am and 6:00pm. Sessions will be from 8.00 to 13:00 and 13:00 to 18:00

 

Yours sincerely

Mr G.Evans
Headteacher

Letter from Local Authority - 26th March 

Dear Parent/Carer


Re: Your application for free emergency childcare


Thank you for your recent application to the local authority for free emergency childcare. All parents/carers are advised to keep their children at home and to limit social contact in an attempt to reduce the spread of COVID-19. This is also recommended for parents/carers working in essential sectors that are supporting us in our fight against COVID-19, although in some cases we recognise that this is not always possible.

There is a clear from Public Health Wales and Welsh Government, highlighting that parents/carers should not rely on childcare from grandparents, friends, or family members who are over 70, are pregnant or have underlying health and medical conditions. Parents/carers should also do everything they can to ensure that their children are not mixing socially in a way which can continue to spread the virus. This includes ensuring that children remain at least 2m apart where possible and that mass gatherings are avoided. Play areas are now closed and should not be frequented.
If it not possible for you to care for your child safely in the home and your work is critical to the COVID-19 response then emergency childcare can be accessed in a Rhondda Cynon Taf school. The critical sectors include the following:
• Health and social care;
• Education and childcare;
• Key public services;
• Local and national government;
• Food and other necessary goods;
• Public safety and national security;
• Transport;
• Utilities, communication and financial services.

Please only bring your child to school if your work is essential to the fight against COVID 19. Please do not attend school if you cannot evidence your role in an essential service area. In order to ensure that we prioritise the provision for essential workers only, it might be necessary for us to request further evidence on the nature of your role. If this is not provided in a timely manner, the offer of childcare will be deferred or potentially removed. Further details relating to essential workers is attached to this letter.

Your support in minimising risks for our children, staff and communities would be much appreciated so please only bring your child to emergency childcare if you clearly meet eligibility and cannot provide care in the home context.

Many thanks for your continued support.

Yours sincerely


Mr G.Evans

 

 

Important new communication from RCT/Public Health Wales 

Coronavirus continues to spread in Wales. Public Health Wales yesterday announced that a further seven people have died in Wales over recent days as a result of the virus and the number of confirmed cases in Wales continues to grow by the day, with significant increases over the last two days in particular.

The social distancing advice is there for a reason – people are falling ill and people with under-lying health issues are dying as a result of continued transmission of the virus. Therefore, it is absolutely imperative that we all personally take the responsibility to minimise the contact we have with one another to slow the spread of the virus.

Play areas across the County have all now been closed and should not be attended. If your children are not in the Emergency childcare settings please keep them safe at home, this extends to the evenings too. You have to do this for the safety of your family, friends and neighbours, to limit and slow down the spread of the virus.

Dear Parent,

I would like to thank you all for your support during this difficult time. I know a large number of you have had to considerably reorganise your work patterns in order to keep your children at home and we are very appreciative of your efforts. We will endeavor to provide cover for those of you who have no other alternative and our aim is to ensure your children are happy and safe. Thankfully many of you have listened to the advice from various authorities and decided to keep your children away from school. Hopefully, together we will all work together to beat this virus and keep our community and our families safe.

We will continue to update you on any further developments at school level.

Mr Evans 

Letter from Kirsty Willimas / Llythyr oddi wrth Kirsty Williams - Minister for Education / Gweinidog Addysg 20/3/20

Letter 20/03/2020 / Llythyr 20/03/2020

Letter 19/03/2020 / Llythyr 19/03/2020