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Important Update Letter to Parents and Carers

25th March 2020


Dear Parents and Carers


We thank our many parents for their work on the front line. We also thank those who are able to choose to keep their children at home. I have a duty to protect my staff, children and to support critical workers. Make no mistake, this is a deadly virus and we rally as a community to protect those around us. I am now
ill at home with Coronavirus symptoms. I feel terrible that I have come into contact with so many children and critical workers. My senior staff, who have been with me, non-stop for several days are forced to self-isolate and yet we try to continue a provision for our very desperate critical workers.


We continue to offer Free lunches through various routes, we are sourcing food packages, we call our vulnerable families and we are working on a home calling tutor system for children. We are working hard to help. Please allow us to protect our staff and the children attending emergency day-care by not sending your child if you do not have to… we are here to protect our critical worker children and our staff as well as the wider community.


We continue to offer emergency day-care for those with no other option. If shift patterns can be adjusted to cover childcare, your child is safer at home. If you are already working from home, then we are not ‘a change of scene’, we are emergency day-care. Children are sitting 2m apart in the hall - undertaking desk-based
tasks and there are opportunities for sectioned fresh air. Children are not mixing. Children are not at an advantage as we have to keep them 2m apart at all times, this is not ideal. This is the reality of emergency day-care.


Again, as a last resort we will be here for your critical role in the fight against COVID 19. That is our role. We will not be pressured however to put children, staff and the wider community in danger.


Every unnecessary interaction, every non-essential journey and every avoidable gathering increases the spread of this awful disease and more lives will be lost.


Nobody is ‘entitled’ to free childcare because it is more convenient than having them at home. Nobody should be using school as somewhere to babysit their children whilst they work from home. Nobody should be sending their children to school if they have an alternative option.


We all have a social responsibility to stop this virus spreading. We may not be able to remain open beyond the next few days and whilst we do remain partially open we have a duty to ensure that the number of children we have interacting with each other and adults is kept to a minimum. We all have loved ones and families who we need to protect. We must work together in order to protect them.


Before sending your child/ren to school ask yourself:

 

  • · Is it essential that I attend work today?
  • · Am I able to work from home today?
  • · Do I have a friend or relative who could care for my child/ren whilst I am at work?

 

Make no mistake, children are not receiving educational provision so are not advantaged in this way. Children should be at home whenever possible, this is the safest option for them and for all of society. Home learning is being worked on urgently. A ‘homeschool’ type offer should be available after Easter.


Your Sincerely


Gerida Montague
Executive Headteacher

Caring Learning Achieving
Mansel Park Primary School, Culver Close, Southampton, Hampshire, SO16 9HZ, 02380 776162
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