Dear Parents and Carers,
Further to my last school letter announcing our conditional plans for a potential phased return for Years 1 and 6; and a shift in thinking from Bradford City Council:
“Bradford Council has no intention of directing schools to open on 1 June or to force parents to send their children back and we are committed to working in partnership with school leaders, families and trade unions so that they can make sure their schools are safe environments for our children whenever they choose to open. Parents will not be fined if they choose not to send their children back to school at this time.”
BD5 headteachers and I met yesterday to share our concerns and anxieties regarding the huge dilemma which has been thrust upon us.
As a school, nothing is more important to us than our children and staff's safety and well-being. The same is true of all the schools in our community.
As such, Marshfield alongside six other primary schools in BD5, have made the decision to work together on our plan to re-open our community's schools.
The associated schools have collectively decided to not open to any additional children (aside from key worker and vulnerable families) on the 1st June.
For more information, please see the letter outlined below which is being published by all the schools involved this evening. The published letter has been posted on our Letters Home page.
Thanks again for the tremendous support you have provided for myself and Team Marshfield.
Wishing you all a healthy half term with your families and for those of you celebrating Eid Mubarak: may Allah bless you with happiness and grace your homes with warmth and peace.
Look after yourselves and stay safe,
As you know, the 7 primary schools which make up the MyBD5 partnership: All Saints, Newby, St. Matthew’s, St. Stephen’s, St Joseph’s, Marshfield and Bowling Park work together to promote the life chances of the 3,800 children in our care.
Now, more than ever, we are working with you to ensure children, staff and families stay safe and healthy. Since March, our schools have provided work and resources for home learning, and we have seen so many inspiring examples of how you are working with your children to ensure they keep learning and stay safe. Our schools have stayed open to care and support vulnerable families and the children of key workers; and now we are being asked by the government to also begin to increase the number of children attending our schools.
We have spoken to many of you, and we share and understand your concerns about this, particularly given that in Yorkshire the spread of the virus is currently higher than anywhere else in England. We are awaiting an announcement on Thursday, 28th May which will tell us whether the government still believes that it is safe for schools to re-open. If, after that, the government still wishes children to return to school, the schools in BD5 will need further time to prepare staff, buildings and resources to do this.
We will not be inviting any additional children into any of our schools from 1st June. We will contact you individually when we are ready to invite your child. Each school is unique, and we are all planning slightly different approaches depending on what our risk assessments determine to be right for each setting. We will only do what we feel is safe for us all, which means we may not be able to invite as many children into school as the government might want us to. Similarly, no family should feel pressurized to send their children to school; the choice lies with you and we will respect your choice completely.
We have been overwhelmed by the support you have given our schools during this time of crisis, and we are extremely grateful for this. We feel confident that when this situation is resolved, we will emerge even stronger and more ready to work with you all together.
Associated BD5 Headteachers