Executive Head's message

19th June 2020

Well the two weeks of opening to more children, the Reception, Year One and Year Six children, has gone well – we’ve only had around 50% take up though, it would be nice to see more children. We do understand your feelings at this strange time though, so it is only an offer that we share with you, it is up to you.

A very high percentage of you are using the Google Classroom facility we have set up for you – and we realise many are supplementing this with other things or just doing ‘their own thing’.

So well done all of you- we realise some of you are juggling home schooling and work, some of you with many different aged children – we take our hats off to you! Don’t forget – all year groups will have an invitation to come to school from Monday 22nd June, some for two days, others all week: please come along at allocated time if you wish to take up this offer.

But don’t forget if you are at home we are here for you too – we will share ‘home/school sessions’ information next week and we’ll be explaining our ‘blended learning offer’. This is for now, but also to extend over the Summer   holiday period.  You may feel you’d like to pick up academic work two weeks prior to the September school opening, You may feel a mid-holiday 2/3 week block of mornings is best for your child/family – or you may do alternate weeks. Its up to you and your situation, you know your child best. We just want to provide something that will go some way in helping us all overcome this disrupted school year.

If your child is able to attend from 22nd June (even if its only two days a week) we can help tailor what we offer and assist them in managing their own learning whilst they are off. Therefore it is very important to us that you take up the offer if you can – we are none of us sure how long ‘blended learning’ will need to continue. We are not able to plan securely for September as yet, as it is too far in the future, but we are planning for a variety of scenarios.

So – we have an offer for ALL year groups to come in from Monday 22nd June, this offer may grow (ie the pupils only doing 2 days initially may be invited for more of the week) or it may be altered/reduced depending on how the offer works. For instance,  we may find we can manage more numbers successfully and we’ll increase the days. Alternatively if a child or staff member of a ‘bubble’ became symptomatic of Covid-19, we would close that ‘bubble’, those children would need to self-isolate and therefore not attend school for 14 days.

We, of course will keep you updated via our Newsletter and this Website.

2nd June 2020

We are all ready to open on Monday 8th June.

We can continue to take in our ‘Key Group’ of children (who we’ve had in for nearly three months) and also offer places for Nursery (at William Stockton), Reception, Year One and Year Six for the two weeks starting 8th June.

We are expecting between 50 and 70% of pupils to come to school – and this is fine, it is parental choice, we are just offering places at the moment.

Information for the two weeks after this will be sent out  at a later date.

For children who are staying at home, either out of choice or because they are not in the year groups who have been invited in as yet, we are continuing Google Classroom and the learning that they have become used to over the past three months.

We are very much looking forward to seeing as many children as possible, but we fully understand everyone has a different view on school opening and we realise not everyone will be in who is invited. If you first of all think you DO NOT want a place and later change your mind – that is fine, just let us know (rather than just show up) as we need to keep the ‘bubbles’ to a certain size.

Creating ‘bubbles’ (which are groups of children and adults who work together) is one of our ways of keeping our children and adults safe, together with WOD:

Washing of hands

Outside working as much as possible

Distancing children and adults apart as much as we are able to do

We have some markers for ‘one way walking’, we have widened the corridors by removing furniture and we have cleaning rotas in the middle of the day (as well as the usual end of day cleaning) All this will help create a safe environment – we are trying to keep the children safe but not scare them too much. We want them to enjoy themselves socially as well as get assistance with learning – therefore we are keeping signs and rules to the minimum. We’d rather educate the children about how to behave and act so that they understand, this way they’ll be well equipped to manage in the ‘outside world’ also.

So: this is from Monday 8th June until  Fri 19th June and the set up from Monday 22nd June will be shared with you in due course.

Just to remind you: offices at the school will not be manned therefore we cannot accept any visitors into the school at this time.

Hopefully see you soon – good luck with whatever you are up to.

Mrs Atkins

 

18th May 2020

Hope you are all coping at home, what we see on Twitter and Google Classrooms show us you are doing very well! Here our focus currently is planning to reopen.

We are lucky to have a group of Senior Leaders across the school who can keep up to date with the ever changing picture on school opening. Many are working at home currently, but all are involved in ensuring we have all the right environment for those children we are able to welcome back to school in June. We hope this is the first week – but we have to await Government guidance.

Rest assured we have prepared well and hope to open on Tues June 2nd (as we’ll have an ‘Inset day’ to share procedures with staff and make sure classrooms are ready on the Monday).

As you know not all the children are able to come back, we will send invitations and you will know if this is an option for you. We understand too that not all of you invited will want to take the place at the moment, and we understand this too. We will just need to know – so we will be speaking to you about this.

Hope you are all well – we have another Bank Holiday coming up next weekend! Then it is half term – so no Google Classroom or home-tutoring needed then, you/we can all have a well earned rest!

But before then, we’ll finalise our plans for our opening and be in touch.

Thanks for your understanding and support at this difficult time.

Mrs Atkins

11th May 2020  As we’ve had the news that we are to consider opening schools in June, we are spending more time on our ‘reopening Risk Assessment’ and plans. As I’ve informed you, we have been planning how to open ever since we have closed. We have worked hard on the environment, ensuring its is clean and fit for purpose, we have also worked hard on planning systems to ensure it stays clean during the day once children are back, bringing in extra cleaning measures etc. and we are now working on the curriculum that we can offer our children. Some children will be at home and others in school – after half term we will hopefully be able to offer some children lessons in school, and others the same lessons at home. Until then – there is a lot there to think about and we need to see how society manages the changes that are being introduced for the few weeks of May

Please rest assured we have been thinking about what is best for our communities and as soon as the first phase of our plan is set, details will be sent out to you. Until then, stay safe and hope to see you soon.

Moira Atkins

April 27th 2020 Hi everyone – just a note to you all to say ‘well done’ you’re all doing a grand job in these strange times! We realise ‘home-schooling’ is tricky, we hope what the teachers are working on for/with you helps (don’t forget this is all optional!)

We are all learning a lot about ourselves and our families and each other aren’t we? There are many positives to take from this time – but we do realise that many people may have concerns also, so our Pastoral Team will be in contact with every family, they have already contacted a large proportion. We are not all in the ‘same boat’, but in the ‘same storm’ and we are helping each other where we can, which is lovely to see.

 

We are in Week 6 now and we are planning our phase one of return to school, in preparation for when we are able to do so. As always we are taking advice from the Department for Education and our Local Authority – as we have all the way through. We realise that not all of you will be able to return on our first day; some of you/your children may have medical conditions etc. This is fine, you must continue to do exactly what YOU need to do for your family. All we ask is that you stay in touch us – read the website (main page will have key information), keep looking at Twitter on the website (you don’t need an account – but it would be great if you had one!) and messages we send you via text. The assemblies were a great hit and it was lovely that so many of you could sign in to Twitter to view these , I hope to ‘see’ you there this Friday!

 

We will have to phase pupils back into school as we won’t have a full staff immediately – as many have their own families and/or medical conditions. Therefore we will not have all pupils immediately either. We will need to stagger the times those pupils coming into school arrive and leave. We will need to ensure the environment is right (clean, uncluttered classrooms that can be cleaned during the day, rooms with less furniture to enable social distancing etc etc) All of this is being planned at the moment, so don’t worry about anything. You will be informed in plenty of time, through the usual channels when all is set and we are ready to open in phase one.

 

Google classroom has an average of 80% ‘sign up’ (not engagement!) which is great, but we need this to 100% over the next two weeks. The reason for this is whilst maybe half of the pupils are in school (to enable space for them to ‘isolate’ and to meet criteria of ratio with a depleted staff) those at home will need to be learning at home, in a similar way to those in school. This will be different to now  - Its still currently ‘care’ at school and ‘optional work’ on Google classroom for those at home.  NOTHING IS CHANGING AS YET.


 

So don’t forget, don’t worry about school re-opening – there will be a plan and you will know it! Don’t worry about what you hear on the T.V. or in Newspapers or from other schools. We will let you know when we are ready……and when we are, we will start a phased return. Untill that time don't forget we are here and if we can help with anything please get in touch.

Take care

Moira  Atkins

 

 

20th April – Welcome back, hope you had a good Easter

We’ve been very lucky with the weather haven’t we? Do you think it’s a reward for us all being so good?! Looking at Twitter we can see you’ve all been up to all kinds of fun things, many of them involving nature, which is lovely to see. Teachers are now back onto Google Classroom and Marvellous Me – so they will be contacting you all to enable pupils to access this type of learning if you wish. If you are having trouble with accessing a laptop or tablet please speak to your teachers and we’ll see if we can loan you something to help. Your class page will have other ideas for learning – and I’m sure you’ll have plenty of your own. It’s perfectly fine that we are all doing different things at the moment, that’s just the way it is for a while.

 However, one thing we can ALL still do is earn one of the ROSETTES! Our weekly Celebration Assemblies will start again this week, they will be live on Twitter each Friday at 10.00 – so please get an adult to Tweet what you are up to on the school’s website, show us how ‘smart’ you are being! #musicsmart #naturesmart #wordsmart #selfsmart #bodysmart #numbersmart #artsmart #peoplesmart

Ms Mahon, Mrs Ackers and Ms Quayle are always here to see if they can help in any other way too – see our Safeguarding pages for contact details.

 

Friday 3rd April 2020 School finishes today for a two-week Easter break (expect for a small number of pupils whose mum and dads are working in ‘Key Jobs’). Usually everyone looks forward to a break or a holiday, but it feels a bit different this time. Because we’ve not all been together – it seems strange. However it is needed, staff need to be with their families and they need a break from the ‘home schooling’ they are helping with through Google Classroom and other things they are doing for school. The things they’ve set up through our website have been fantastic, Twitter has been a great way to see what everyone is doing at home. Families and staff have communicated in a very different way and its been nice in many ways seeing ‘different sides’ of people – we can see how much fun people are having in this strange time. People are ‘making the best of it’ and that’s we can see you doing that too.

However there is a little bit of sadness too. I was a little sad today; I’ve not seen my mother (who is 91) for three weeks. She is in a nursing home and the rule is that they are not allowed visitors there at the moment. So my husband, sons, Dexter and I all took photos of ourselves (we took Dexters!) and wrote a card for the staff to read out to her for us, and we gave the carers some chocolates to say thank you! 

I know a lot of you have started to miss your friends and teachers – and they miss you too! That is natural, it is a very different time for us all, we will all be a little bit sad at some time or other I’m sure, before we can get back together. But we will get back together, this will pass – we just need to stick to the rules and keep being connected in our new, different ways and to show our thanks for all those that are helping us get through this. Thanks for clapping last night for the NHS and all the ‘Key Workers’ (that’s our staff too!) I could hear you from here- well a saw a lot of you on Twitter.

Enjoy your Easter Holidays and don’t eat too many Easter Eggs and we’ll get back to our ‘new normal’ on Monday 20th April –  stay safe and learn our song: YOU GOTTA BE   # initogether

30.3.20 Start of a brand new week! We've had a lovely week in many ways - even though these are strange times. People are 'making the most' of it all - and this has been helpful for us all. So well done and lets carry on - thinking of others, keeping connections and helping each other. Team 1 for WS was Ms Forshaw, Mr Johnston, Mr Millington, Mrs Ince, Ms Boyle Mrs Walker and Leanne & Donna - as well as the team of cleaners, Jan the cook and kitchen team and Mr Morris . Well done for a great week one!!

We all need to remember 'Hope' when things are so different, as now. Hope is not just a feeling or a 'wish' its an attitude and a way of working. All the staff at WS & W are working hard to make your present time as good as we can - from a distance. We are also all working toward the time we're all back together  - we are hopeful and optimistic that this won't be long in the coming. In the mean time we'll keep our connections and hope you have another great week. Let us know what you are up to on your class Twitter page, keep connected to your class.

I hope someone sees a butterfly this week! I saw one last week, by Wimbodlsely school - but I don't think I captured it! If you see one please let us know...... via twitter. Yesterday was the first day of British Summer time (think snow is on its way.......). #hope

CHILDREN: What was the Greek Myth about 'hope' and a 'butterfly'?

 

23.3.20 What a funny day! Funny date too - in a three years it will look like this: 23.3.23 - how many years need to pass until it is a PALINDROME NUMBER?? I wonder what we'll be doing then...... we'll look back and remember this as a very strange time, telling younger children about it. Lets make good memories and continue to have fun, as so many of you obviously have! Another 'funny' set of numbers are called 'Fibonacci' numbers - they are linked to nature, look at this video or google it and see what numbers have to do with pineapples and Sunflowers!! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nt2OlMAJj6o

To pupils and parents of William Stockton: Last Friday, 20th March was the start of a very new time for us all. It was also the earliest spring equinox for more than a century.  Equinox means 'equal night' and at 3.50 am it meant the day and night were roughly the same length - this means from now on the days will be longer than the nights. In December our days were around 8 hours long - this will now increase gradually and we'll get 16.5 days of daylight by the time we come to June. (See if you can find out the name for the longest day in June!)

Just a week ago we didn't know our 'school day' would look like this: Some of us at home, some of us in the school building - but we are all still part of William Stockton school and the wider Federation.

Our parents and pupils have been fantastic, thank you. We have had nothing but support. The staff have planned the best way of all keeping in touch - and continue to work on this. Its a shame we're all going through this at the moment but its no ones fault - its just how it is, lets make the best of it and continue to share interesting ideas with each other. Twitter is great for this - look at Wimboldsley website too.

So things are different - but as David Hockney said this week 'They can't cancel Spring!' At this beautiful time of the year, please try to enjoy nature, taking the precautions the Government have advised us. 

CHILDREN - can you see Woody the Woodpecker in my garden? Look at the video on Twitter - I can hear him, can you? What birds can you see out of your window?

 

 

 

William Stockton Primary School

Heathfield Road, Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, CH65 8DH

0151 3551650

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