Update 26th June 2020

Dear Parents and Carers

 

We have now welcomed back Year 6, Year 1 and Foundation 2 children who wanted to have a place back at the Primary School. We will also be wider opening to a small group of children at the Nursery School from Monday, these children have been informed and if you wish your child to be placed on the waiting list please contact the Nursery School office from Tuesday. 

Since the wider reopening of the Primary School we have managed to double the number of places to children who we originally thought were going to arrive back at school. However we are now full in all year groups but have a waiting list in case children do not return back to school as planned. We currently have 10 children on the waiting list for the three year groups at the Primary School and 4 children for the Nursery School. If you would like to add your child to the waiting list please contact the school office as soon as possible. From Monday 6th July no new children will be added to the waiting lists. We can’t guarantee that a place will become available for your child but we will endeavour to fill every spare place in every bubble if one becomes available. If your child has a place in a bubble please remember that they need to attend every day unless they are ill, otherwise their place could be given to someone waiting to attend.

All children have settled in extremely well considering the change of routine and keeping to the new rules. I am exceptionally pleased with the way our youngest children have managed to cope with this new routine and I give every credit to the children, yourselves and the staff for preparing them and guiding the children into this ‘new normal’. Well done children!

If your child’s year group have not returned or you have not felt comfortable with them returning just yet, I have already started to prepare plans for the proposed full reopening of the school from September and we intend to follow the guidance to ensure we can meet the government’s and our ambition to have everyone safely back in school then.

Please continue to follow the guidance in your own families over the coming weeks to ensure that the virus continues to fall in our community.

 

Childcare provision.

 

We are now approaching the last three weeks of childcare provision which will end on 17th July 2020. Our childcare provision has increased fourfold since we first started it at the end of March, with our largest numbers in school from next week. This is why it is so important that you fill in the childcare survey form on time each week to ensure that we can plan for this large number of children at the school and ensure that we have enough space in school as well as staff. As more key workers have been able to return to work the childcare numbers have increased rapidly. If in the next three weeks we have too many children in the childcare for us to safely manage the survey form may need to be turned off if we can’t accept any more children. This may then become a first come first served option. Hopefully this will not happen, but if it does we will be on hand to give you details of other schools in the locality you could approach for childcare provision if you contact the school. Childcare survey forms must be completed the week before you need a place for your child by Thursday at 7pm at the very latest.

Drop off time: Please also remember to drop your child off between 8.45 and 9.00am, we continue to have children being dropped off after 9.00am, sometimes up until 10.30am. This does not help the staff to plan accordingly and it unsettles the groups.

Pick up time: Please remember to collect your child before 3.20pm unless you are a key worker and paying for the after school service from OTIS. We are one of only three schools in the locality that have been open each day from 8.00am to 5.45pm during this pandemic crisis and not charged for the before/after school hours until now. Unfortunately wages need to be paid and we need to ensure that none of the OTIS staff lose their jobs as a consequence of no income coming in to pay for them.

 

Working from home.

 

We have been informed by the DFE today that the Oak National Academy will remain open and continue to publish lessons online for the next academic year. This is really helpful if any parents wish to support their child further at home even once the children have returned to school.

We have noticed a significant drop in the number of children accessing our online learning and totally understand that this may become more and more challenging for you. I would only wish to encourage you that if you can continue with the online resources available then please do so. Please see the letter which was sent home on Monday regarding Home Learning. Online learning is available on the working from home page on our school website. Or utilise the extremely well resourced Oak National Academy website https://www.thenational.academy/ . Don’t forget that you can contact your child’s year group teachers by email, for example: year1@somerville.wirral.sch.uk Foundation 2 is F2year@somerville.wirral.sch.uk  this is the only one that differs slightly in format.

 

Free School Meal Vouchers.

 

Summer holiday free school meal vouchers will be issued as a £90 voucher by Somerville the week ending the 10th July. This will then give you a chance in the final week starting the 13th July to contact the school if you have had any issues receiving or redeeming your codes. After this week the school office and I will not be contactable and will be unable to answer any queries regarding free school meals vouchers.

 

I have directed Mrs Zazzi to contact all of the parents and carers who have not redeemed or claimed their Free School Meal vouchers since we have been closed. Starting with the vouchers not claimed in April. She has now started to telephone and text parents and carers to ensure that they know that the vouchers are available and have not been cashed.

 

So far there are £3,480 of unclaimed vouchers for our parents at Somerville. One parent has not cashed over £450’s worth of vouchers other parents have just odd weeks of £15 not cashed. This is very frustrating for me as I want to ensure that you all have the vouchers which I have sent to you every week to ensure your child does not go hungry. Even more frustrating is the fact that the government will reclaim these vouchers during the Summer break if you do not use them and we will not be able to reissue them afterwards. Therefore we have 3 weeks left to ensure you cash your vouchers which you have not redeemed so far.

 

Contacting the school.

 

Office staff continue to work in the school office to answer the telephone and respond to or forward emails. Please do not visit the school office unless you have a prior appointment. Only in exceptional circumstances should you visit the school office and with a prior appointment. Emails can be sent to the schooloffice@somerville.wirral.sch.uk and the school office number is 0151 638 5074

 

Look after yourselves everyone!

 

 

Mr M J Forber

Executive Headteacher

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