UPDATE 04.06.20

Dear Parents and Carers

I hope you and your families are safe and well.

As I am sure you are now aware, Kirsty Williams, has made a significant announcement about the plans to open schools later this month. The intention of the Welsh Government is to open schools from June 29th in order to ‘Check in, catch up and prepare for Summer and September with all pupils.

The main points in this Welsh Government announcement are as follows:

  • All schools in Wales will begin to reopen from Monday 29th June
  • The summer term will be extended by one additional week, ending on Monday 27th July

    The autumn half-term break (in October) will be expanded from to two weeks instead of one week

  • In each school, there will be a phased approach to reopening, and it is expected that this will mean that, at most, a third of pupils will be present at school at any one time
  • There will be much smaller classes to ensure the necessary social distancing measures are in place
  • The secure and limited time in school in the final four weeks of the summer term will be supported with home learning activities. This will help to get children and staff ready for a similar experience in September.
  • Next week, the Welsh Government will publish further guidance to support schools and local authorities. This will include information on managing their facilities and logistical arrangements, including buildings, resources, cleaning and transport.
  • The link to the full statement made by Kirsty Williams yesterday is: https://gov.wales/check-catch-prepare-summer-and-september-all-schools-wales-enter-next-phase

It is important to understand that the experience from Monday 29th June will be quite different for everyone, and we will not be able to operate in the way we did before the school closure. It is highly likely that most children will be in school for approximately one day each will in June and July, as part of this phased approach to reopening. At the beginning, the main focus will simply be on ‘Check-on, Catch-up and Preparation’ in readiness for September

A key priority for all schools will be the safety of all children and staff. In order to do this, we will be working closely with the local authority in order to plan a safe return to school. The childcare hubs already have comprehensive risk assessments in place, and we will use these to prepare safe, well managed learning environments on our return to school.

The Minister for Education has emphasised that the return to school for children is not compulsory, but we want to assure you that we will do all we can over the new 3 weeks to prepare an environment which is as safe as possible, to provide you and your children with the confidence to return to school. We will be in regular contact with you over the next 3 weeks with updates on progress towards reopening, and with any new information as it arises. We will do our best to respond to any questions or queries you may have, but please be patient with us if we do not have immediate answers.

We know that returning to school will be an anxious time for many of you. When we reopen, we will do so as safely as possible, putting your wellbeing and health at the very centre of all our plans and discussions. At least we now have a date to work towards, and we will be receiving comprehensive guidance from the Welsh Government next week. Once this guidance is published, we will be able to provide you with far more information about our plans for reopening Bryntirion on June 29th.

I hope that, whilst you may be anxious or apprehensive, there will also be relief and excitement at the prospect of returning to school and seeing teachers and friends again. We are so much looking forward to seeing you again.

Thank you for all your incredible support, generosity and patience over the past three months.

Take care

Mr Pawar - Headteacher