Belmore Primary Academy
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COVID-19

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Coronavirus (COVID-19)?
 

This is a virus that affects the lungs and therefore people’s breathing.

Does COVID-19 affect children?
 

Evidence suggests that the risk to children themselves of becoming severely ill from coronavirus (COVID-19) is very low but that there are negative health impacts of being out of school.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
 

The main symptoms are:

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

You can seek advice by calling NHS 111 or visiting https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19/

PLEASE NOTE: If your child is displaying any of the above symptoms of Coronavirus, please do not send them to school and arrange to get a test immediately.

Are the symptoms of COVID-19 different in children than in adults?
 

No. The symptoms of COVID-19 are similar in children and adults. COVID-19 can look different in different people. For many people, being sick with COVID-19 would be a little bit like having the flu. People can get a fever, cough, or have a hard time taking deep breaths. Most people who have gotten COVID-19 have not gotten very sick. Only a small group of people who get it have had more serious problems.

What should I do if my child develops symptoms? 

Any child showing Coronavirus symptoms MUST stay at home.  Please be aware that if any child starts showing symptoms during the day they will be isolated and parents will be phoned to come and collect them.  They will then need to get a test for the virus and we will advise you how to do this.  In the event of someone in the school testing positive for the virus we will be advised by Public Health England about the measures we need to take.  This may involve some children being asked to stay at home and self-isolate.  If you are at all unsure about whether to send your child in please contact Ms Marsh, our Welfare Officer, or Ms Payne, our Attendance Officer before sending your child in.

Should I send my child to school? 

How will the school support my child if my child has to stay home?
 

If your child is self isolating the school will provide a pack of work which will enable them to keep up with their classmates.  Your child's class teacher will contact you by telephone at least twice during the self isolation period.

What is the school's Remote Learning Policy?
 

Please click on the link below to read our Remote Learning Policy:

 

What if another child in the class has symptoms? 

We will be following Government guidance if this happens. The child will be sent home and asked to self-isolate. Children who have been in close contact with them do not need to go home to self-isolate unless the child tests positive, your child develops symptoms themselves or you have been requested to do so by NHS Test & Trace. Your child will be asked to wash their hands thoroughly for 20 seconds with soap and running water or use hand sanitiser and the area around the person with symptoms will be cleaned with normal household disinfectant after they have left to reduce the risk of passing the infection on to other people.

What will happen if my child becomes unwell and develops COVID-19 symptoms in school? 

What do I do if my child is unwell but I am not sure if it is COVID-19 or something else? 

At this time of year, there are many common childhood illnesses circulating including:

  • Diarrhoea and vomiting
  • Sore throat
  • Runny nose or other symptoms similar to a cold or flu

Any of these symptoms do not necessarily mean your child has Covid-19. A sore throat and runny nose are typically the first signs of a cold and, if they do not have a temperature and are well enough, can still come to school. If, however, you are in any doubt keep them at home and monitor for 48 hours. If their condition worsens or you are still concerned, do seek medical advice as detailed above and keep school informed.

You can find more information here: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/is-my-child-too-ill-for-school/

What protective measures is the school taking to keep my child safe?
 

Current protective measures in place for the prevention of the spread of the virus and our response to any infection will continue to be deployed with some modifications in light of the increased number of children attending school.

  • Children will be placed into year group ‘bubbles’.
  • Staff will socially distance from other adults and from children where possible.
  • Visitors will not be allowed on site without an appointment.
  • A frequent cleaning schedule will be in place (frequently touched surfaces).
  • Staff will clean their hands frequently, on arrival to school and before working with a new group of children/a new child.
  • Children will be taught ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ and will clean their hands:
  1. On arrival to school
  2. After using the toilet
  3. Before eating
  4. After returning from outside/other areas of the building
  5. At least 2 additional times during the day
  • One-way systems will continue to be in operation as per the current arrangements.
  • Year groups will have designated toilets for use during the day which will be cleaned regularly. Pupils will be expected to clean their hands thoroughly after using toilets.
  • PPE will be provided for personal care and in the event of a child displaying COVID symptoms. Emergency packs will be located in each classroom.
  • Cleaning products will be available for each class.
  • We support the wearing of reusable face coverings for staff in communal areas such as the staff room and during larger staff meetings where appropriate (staff own personal choice).
  • We also support the wearing of visors for classroom staff whilst teaching if they choose to do so.
  • In line with government guidance, we do not currently recommend the wearing of face coverings for children at any time during the school day, however this will be kept under review.

Does my child have to wear a mask? 

Some parents may want their child to wear a face covering.  This is a question of personal choice.  Government do not advise that children under the age of 11 need to wear one and the World Health Organisation does not currently recommend face coverings for children aged 5 or younger.  Face coverings used incorrectly can accelerate transmission risks.  You may decide that it is better that your child does not wear a face covering at this time but, if you do, please be aware that as a parent it is important that you are confident that your child understands how to wear, put on and remove a face covering safely.  The school cannot monitor this during the day.

Will my child’s teacher be wearing a full mask? 

In most cases teachers will not be wearing full masks. However, there are a few situations where this may be required - for example if a member of staff must provide close medical care for your child.

My children have different start times – why is this? 

We have taken certain measures to reduce contact between children at particular pressure points in the day. These include drop off and collection times. We have adjusted the timetable start and finish times to accommodate this.

Please see the table below for the new times of the school day:

Year Group Start Time Finish Time Drop Off/Pick Up 
Nursery 8:35 11:30 Nursery Gate
12:15 15:15
Reception 9:00 14:45 Main Entrance
(path way gate)
Year 1 8:35 - 9:00 14:40 Main Entrance
(path way gate)
Year 2 8:35 - 9:00 14:45 Key Stage 2 Playground
(gate into playground)
Year 3 8:35 - 9:00 14:55

Breakfast Club Entrance
(car park entrance)

Year 4 8:35 - 9:00 14:45

Key Stage 2 Playground
(gate into playground)

Year 5 8:35 - 9:00 15:00 Key Stage 2 Playground
(gate into playground)
Year 6 8:35 - 9:00 15:00 Key Stage 2 Playground
(gate into playground)

Will I be allowed to visit the school? 

We will inform you what to do if you need to visit. If you would like to speak to a teacher you will need to make an appointment.  Please call the school on 01895 462 364 or email enquiries@belmore.school

I am concerned about my child sharing school resources. How can this be safe? 

For individual and very frequently used equipment, such as pencils and pens, we will provide your child with their own items. Classroom based resources, such as books and games, can be used and shared within the year group bubble; these are cleaned regularly, along with all frequently touched surfaces. Resources that are shared between classes or bubbles, such as sports, art and science equipment are also cleaned frequently and meticulously and always between bubbles.

Will my child still receive the full curriculum? 

We will be trying to ensure that this occurs. Modifications to the curriculum have been made at the start of this academic year, with the aim of returning to normal curriculum content by no later than the summer term 2021.

Will my child be in the same classroom all day? 

Children will be spending most of the day in one classroom and this will continue.  We are having staggered break times and lunch times so we have time for cleaning surfaces in the dining hall between groups. 

What will happen if I don’t send my child to school? 

The usual rules on school attendance apply.  We will be recording attendance and following up pupil absence. The aim would always be to work with parents/carers to resolve any issues or concerns around attendance. 

If you have any concerns please contact our Attendance Officer Ms Payne by calling the school on 01895 462 364 or email enquiries@belmore.school

How will children with additional needs be supported in planning their return to school? 

We have considered planning for children and young people with additional needs in their recovery plans. These are based on what we already know about the child’s needs and we will review their individual plans in light of any impact of COVID-19. If there are things which have increased the vulnerability of a child, this will be considered in the planning for their return.

My child has ASD. Is there anything I can do to support them with the return to school? 

Your child may find change difficult and it is important that you help them to understand which parts of going to school will still be the same and what will be different - predictability and understanding will help your child to re-access school successfully at the beginning of the academic year.

Please visit the Hillingdon.gov.uk website for Support and resources for children and young people with SEND and their families.

My child has just finished Y1 and missed the phonics screening check, what will happen about this? 

The government is consulting on this. The latest proposal is that pupils will do a phonics screen in the autumn and pupils who do not meet the threshold will do an additional check in later in Year 2 in 2021. This will allow schools to ensure that any interventions can be put in place to support pupils with their knowledge and use of phonics.

What will happen with Key Stage 2 SATs in 2021? 

Year 6 SATs are currently expected to proceed as normal.

Will school lunches still be available? 

Yes. 

School meals cost £2.20 per day, please top up your ParentPay account if you would like your child to have school dinners.

We are currently operating a limited menu in order to observe COVID-19 compliance in school.  Please click on the link below to see the menu for this term:

Autumn Term Menu 2020