In light of this developing situation, this update sets out the precautions the school has taken to protect the broader community from the impact of Coronavirus (Covid-19). This information is relevant to all pupils, parents, staff and any visitors to the school, with more detailed advice having been communicated to those groups separately.
Friday 15th May
We have been busy finding ways to support the Wandsworth community during these unprecedented times.
With our altruistic and innovative community of pupils, parents and staff, the school is in the fortunate position of being able to reach a wide radius of people in need of extra support during the Covid-19 pandemic. Many key workers and vulnerable families across the borough have benefitted from medical materials, food, children’s books and digital devices, distributed through the school’s partnership links with state primary schools and local charities.
We joined the drive to deliver vital PPE to local NHS staff early in the lockdown. In March, our estates director Mr Chris Wright collected 125 safety glasses and 25 safety goggles from across the school which were donated to local NHS practices. The Design & Technology department has also been partnering with Helpful Engineering – a volunteer-run, non-profit organisation that works with engineers, scientists and doctors to help solve critical issues rising during the Covid-19 pandemic. Mr Neil Guegan and Miss Alice Foxen have been utilising the department’s machinery and materials to create over 500 visors for staff in local GP practices (including Covid-19 clinics) and nursing homes in North West Surrey.
An increased number of people have been struggling to feed themselves and their families during the pandemic. On Thursday 19th March, as the school closed its doors to pupils for the foreseeable future, the development team loaded one of the school minibuses with enough food to feed over 1000 pupils and delivered it to local food bank and homeless shelter partners St Mark’s Foodbank and Ace of Clubs. The development team subsequently put out an appeal to the school community asking for donations to Foodbank Wandsworth and Spires – a South London charity that helps hundreds of homeless and disadvantaged people. Both organisations struggle to meet demand at the best of times, but demand has grown exponentially during the Covid-19 clinic; many individuals supported by Foodbank Wandsworth are disabled, have long-term health conditions or are single parents of young children. The school raised over £3,000 that was shared equally between the two charities, helping the organisations provide emergency food, basic essentials and clothing to individuals and families in need.
In April, the development team put out a second appeal to help address the food deficit and provide meals to the most vulnerable families at our partner schools. Many families at local state primaries receive Free School Meal vouchers, but these take a long time to process and only cover a small amount towards children’s lunches – not to mention the challenges single parents face when attempting to shop with young children in tow while maintaining social distancing. The money raised from this appeal allowed the school’s catering team to cook 720 hot nutritious meals, which 17 members of staff delivered to 180 of the most vulnerable families at Christ Church, Falconbrook, Goldfinch, Langford and Fulham primary schools.
With schools closed to pupils across the nation and social distancing measures in full force, many children are missing out on both entertainment and education. Mrs Colette Morris, Headteacher of Christ Church CE Primary School, expressed concern that some of her pupils may have little to no access to books at home. Emanuel School initiated an online book drive to help address this need, creating an Amazon wish–list through which members of the community could purchase books for the school’s pupils. 130 books were collected and delivered to Christ Church pupils, with their parents expressing how thrilled and grateful they were for the support.
The latest ongoing campaign sees the school partnering with Power to Connect: a new initiative, launched by Wandsworth Council and Battersea Power Station, to help local children and families maintain schooling and communication during the pandemic. It is vital that all children have a digital device for remote learning, yet many children from less financially–secure families are being left behind. Without access to a device, children are also isolated from their friendship groups with potential repercussions for ongoing mental health. To address this need, a call has been put out for old laptops and tablets, which volunteers with IT experience are wiping clean and repurposing to distribute to local schools. As part of the scheme, some of these digital devices are also being provided to St George’s Hospital in Tooting, allowing in-patients to stay in touch with loved ones during this difficult time.
As the Covid-19 pandemic continues, Emanuel School will continue to find ways to support the most vulnerable members of our community.
Thursday 2nd April
- The school site will be fully closed for the Easter break between Thursday 2nd and Tuesday 21st April.
- During the site closure, any pastoral matters should be addressed to the relevant head of year and head of section. Safeguarding matters should be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org or, in an emergency, by calling 020 8150 1362.All other contact with the school should be via email to email@example.com rather than by telephone. This email address will be monitored throughout the holidays, and sending emails there will ensure that a response is given quickly by the person who can best help. Over the Easter bank holiday weekend, the enquiries email will not be monitored, and responses will be provided in the following week.
- Teacher training, focused on interactive virtual learning systems and approaches, will take place on Monday 20th and Tuesday 21st April. Teaching will commence Wednesday 22nd April. Further information for pupils and parents about developments to our remote learning programme will be sent out by Mrs Peters, Deputy Head: Academic, on Thursday 16th April.
- Further information for pupils who are in Year 11 or Upper Sixth about this year’s public exams will be shared as soon as it is published by Ofqual.
- Any question related to pupil admissions should be directed to Eloise Maclean or Debra Shuttleworth as usual – our admissions team are working remotely but regularly through the Easter period, and will respond to questions as quickly as possible.
- Thank you for your warm words of support for our staff who have worked hard to ensure that services to parents remain as responsive and caring as normal.
Wednesday 18th March
Please refer to the letter from the Headmaster, Mr Milne, to all parents below. To summarise:
- The school site will close at 3.45pm on Thursday 19th March
- Friday 20th March will be a staff training day
- Monday 23rd will commence remote learning.
Friday 13th March
Please refer to the letter from the Headmaster, Mr Milne, to all parents below. Visitors to the school site should also read ‘access to the school site’ below.
Access to the school site:
Following the latest government guidance on 12 March 2020 regarding COVID-19, the school is now unable to accept any visitors who are displaying the following symptoms:
- New continuous cough, and/or high temperature
We would politely request that all visitors to the site are asymptomatic to reduce the risk of spreading infection.
All visitors should follow the basic hygiene guidance whilst on site:
- Wash hands regularly with soap and water
- Use a tissue for coughs and sneezes (if you don’t have a tissue use your elbow)
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth using unwashed hands
Should you have any concerns, please speak to a member of staff. For further advice please refer to the Public Health England website.
Friday 6th March
You may have seen that as of yesterday, Public Health England has now updated the advice for those who have travelled from Italy. As such, anyone who has travelled from anywhere in Italy in the last 14 days and is experiencing symptoms (cough, high temperature or shortness of breath, even if mild) should remain at home and contact NHS 111 (https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19) to seek guidance. Italy is now officially considered a category 2 region, outside of the 11 towns currently under containment measures which are considered category 1 regions.
As before, anyone returning from a category 1 region should remain at home and contact NHS 111. Those returning from category 2 regions should only remain at home if they are experiencing symptoms. Please do contact the school should you have travelled through these regions so we may keep accurate records should the advice change again, In the first instance, we would ask that you contact the school nurse (firstname.lastname@example.org) and the deputy head: pastoral (email@example.com). A full list of the category 1 and 2 regions is included below.
We continue to review all trips, visits and events, and will be in touch with the relevant parents as any decisions are made.
We appreciate the school has written a number letters to parents this week and we thank you for understanding our need to keep the school community apprised of developments. We are grateful for the efforts that families are making to work with the school during this challenging situation.
Monday 2nd March
The school continues to monitor the advice of Public Health England on daily basis and updates its procedures accordingly.
We are extremely grateful for the support of the entire school community during what is a challenging time. We are well aware of the additional concern and complications this has caused and we are thankful for the steps pupils, parents, staff and visitors are taking to work with us. The health and safety of our pupils, staff and wider school community, as ever, continues to be our priority.
Pupils and staff have been briefed regarding infection control and have been encouraged to pay particular attention to hand hygiene. A number of new hand sanitisers have been installed around the school.
Precautions the school has taken:
- All parents and staff have been written to and advised of the school’s approach to pupils travelling back from category 1 and category 2 regions; this is in line with the guidance for education settings issued by Public Health England.
- All parents and staff have been written to and advised of the school’s approach to those who have come into close contact with any individual who has travelled from a category 1 or 2 region.
- All parents (and staff) have been asked to notify the school if their chid has travelled from category 1 or 2 areas within the last 14 days or develops symptoms of the coronavirus, so a detailed record can be kept and the appropriate action is followed.
- All visiting schools have been written to and advised of the school’s new procedures.
- All visitors on-site are required to inform the school if they have travelled from category 1 or 2 regions within the last 14 days; the school is unable to accept any visitor who had travelled from category 1 region or anyone from a category 2 region who is displaying symptoms of the coronavirus.
- The school continues to inform and work closely with the governing body on all matters.