What a start to the year it has been! We are so delighted to have you all back.
Firstly I would like to thank you all for your patience and efforts. I understand that our new start & finish times are less than convenient but at the moment they are necessary. I know it seems strange that siblings who have sat at the same breakfast table half an hour earlier cannot use the same entrance but in terms of infection control & minimising our risk, it has to be this way.
Lunchtimes have also been the biggest change. Our cooks and staff have been so flexible and have adapted to all the new timings & restrictions to make an almost impossible situation work. We are quite keen to still offer a hot meal option for our children as we are aware that very soon the weather will be changing. The challenge is that we can no longer combine classes and year groups in the dining room so lunchtimes are now timetabled. The dining room also needs to be cleaned in between each class sitting. This means that the children do have a shorter time to eat their dinner than they used to have. This has meant that in order to keep a hot meal option, one year group will have a packed lunch in the first classroom which is not used by a class (also known as the end classroom or the shared classroom). This will be on a three week rotation. For example this week the Nursery & Reception children have had a packed lunch provided whilst year 1 & year 2 have had a hot meal. Next week it will be year 1 having a packed lunch, every one else will have a hot meal and the week after year 2 will have a packed lunch and everyone else will have a hot meal.
We started with Nursery and Reception having a packed lunch this week because going for lunch is yet another new routine for them to get used to. We didn't want them to feel overwhelmed in the dining room, getting their lunch, finding a seat and eating their meal in the allocated time. This has been really successful as we have provided a simpler menu (sandwich, yoghurt, home made biscuit, fruit ) and have been able to accommodate children's dietary preferences (not just dietary requirements) whilst helping them negotiate another new routine. It has also allowed staff adequate time in order to clean the room in between sittings. This is supplemented by snacks e.g. fruit or cheese nibbles in both the morning and afternoon so please don't think they're going hungry. As the weeks go on, the packed lunch option will expand and we will be able to offer a wider variety of food.
We are currently using the e-mail option on parent pay to communicate directly with parents so please activate your account if you have not done so and check on your account that it is still your current e-mail address.
The children have all been stars. They have adapted to new routines so well. They've got used to our new ways of working and are enjoying their time with us so please thank them from all of us,