You will have seen the Government announcement on Sunday 10th May that, if conditions allow, there may be a phased reopening of primary schools from June with children in Reception classes and in Years 1 and 6 to be the first to return. As a Trust we want, of course, to see our children return to school - when it is safe to do so.
As a Trust, we will be closely following Government guidance about this possible phased reopening of schools. The safety of both children and staff are paramount to us and we will be working over the next few days on plans to maximise whatever expectations are set out for social distancing in schools and on keeping our school premises as clean and safe as possible for both children and staff. There are still lots of questions to be answered such as the issue of personal protective equipment in schools, however, and we need further Government guidance on this point before finalising plans.
One of the complexities of the situation is that not all our staff are able to return to school yet and we do need to make sure that when the time comes, we have sufficient staff for the number of children that will be in school.
We recognise that parents may be anxious about what schools reopening will mean and the reassurance I would like to give is that we will only reopen our schools for more pupils when we are convinced it is safe to do so and all our arrangements are fully in place.
We would also like to take this opportunity to remind you that, at present, the list of keyworkers remains unchanged. Therefore, even if employers are requesting that parents return to work, provision within schools remains available to solely key workers at this time.
When our plans are finalised and if schools are instructed to partially reopen, your school will make sure that you receive detailed information from us about what this means in practice and you will be given an opportunity to share your thoughts and views.
Sir Steve Lancashire
Chief Executive Officer, REAch2 Academy Trust