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Buxton Community School

Buxton Community School

Important Message from the Headteacher - partial school closure

Please read below important message regarding partial school closure

 Dear Parent/Carer

The Covid 19 situation has changed dramatically over the last 24 hours. As a result of the new guidance a growing number of students and staff have been affected by the guidelines for self-isolation and preventative care and are unable to attend school.

As a result, we need to make some difficult decisions about what we are to do in terms of our provision. Our staffing capacity has reduced significantly overnight and through today. This means that our ability to provide a safe, clean and valuable educational experience for everyone is becoming increasingly compromised. The indications are that it is likely to continue to become even more challenging over the next few days. The number of supply staff available to cover for absent colleagues is limited and will reduce further as more and more schools become affected in the same way.

I have decided that the appropriate action at this time is to partially close the school. With effect from Wednesday 18th March the following arrangements will come in to place.

School will be closed for the foreseeable future to all students in:

Year 8

Year 9

Year 10

Year 12

We will provide online resources to support students in continuing their learning through the website and the class charts homework system. Subject specific resources can be accessed online and alongside activities they can undertake to best support learning in different subject areas. This guidance will be available on the school website under the ‘Student Life’ tab.  

In addition, tasks for all students in Year 8 to 10 could include: 

  • Using exercise books and lesson material to review and revise their learning.
  • Accessing online revision resources such as; BBC Bitesize, SENECA and GCSEPOD.
  • Viewing of recommended films, documentaries and YouTube clips linked to specific subjects. 
  • Working on subject specific spellings and key words. 
  • Reading widely from a range of fiction and non-fiction. 

Year 12 could also:

  • Access the wealth of revision resources on line, including subject specific platforms. 
  • Use the published revision guides and question booklets that many students have purchased. 
  • Continue to revise from exercise books/class notes and lesson materials using the revision techniques that have been shared with them. 
  • Access past papers from the relevant exam boards (See website for exam board specifications). 

School will currently remain open to all students in:

Year 7

Year 11

Year 13

From tomorrow (18th March 2020) the school day will start at 9.50 am for all Year 7, Year 11 and Year 13 students. This is to allow extra time for cleaning, preparation and re-organisation of our increasingly limited staffing as the situation develops. It may be that your child has a cover teacher dependent on staff absence in that subject but we will endeavour to make sure the lesson is meaningful and supportive. We have removed any mass gatherings such as assembly from the school day and increased the cleaning and site activity.

As a school we play a role in not only educating students but also in safeguarding. We want to make sure that our safeguarding responsibilities are maintained for those affected by the school closure. If you, or your child, have any immediate safeguarding concerns about a child, where there is an immediate risk of harm, then you must contact Derbyshire Social Care on 01629 533190 or the Police on 101. 

For those families affected who are currently working with Mrs Wray, the School’s Family Support Manager, if you feel you need additional support during the school closure then please contact her using her school email address Mrs Wray may also contact you by phone. 

There are also a number of students in school who are seeing Mrs MacDonald- Webb, the school counsellor, who may feel the need for support during the school closure. These students can continue to access support through the e-help portal. You or they can also access the support below.

Other sources of support available to families during the school closures include: 

  • Childline – call 0800 1111 
  • Samaritans – call 116 123 
  • Kooth (a secure online counselling service for young people) 
  • CAMHs – Urgent Care Team – call 07901 330 724 

We will use text and email to update on plans to reopen school, or on the above provision, during school closure. We will also post messages on our school website if necessary. 

I am very grateful to you all for your support and to the staff who are continuing to do their very best to keep the school open and functioning. I will continue to monitor the situation and we will continue to do our very best for your children. I feel I must make you aware at this time that should the situation continue to deteriorate, it may become necessary to reduce provision further although we will work as hard as possible to avoid this.

Your sincerely

Craig Yates - Headteacher