September 18th 2020 Medi 18fed

Dear Parents and carers,

The first week of being fully open to all pupils draws to a close. Once again, I can only thank everybody for their cooperation and appeal to everybody to continue in the same vein. Please remain socially distanced dropping off and picking up. I know everybody wants to greet one another, catch up and have a chat, but we must maintain 2 metres to keep one another safe. Thank you.

Assembly – We were delighted to have our first Covid-19 safe, whole school assembly this morning, transmitted online from my office into the classrooms! My meerkat friend kept me company! It gave me the chance to talk to the whole school for the first time in six months and properly welcome everybody back. We will do the same each Friday morning from now on, while restrictions remain as they are.

Students of the Week – Samuel, Oliver, Madalyn, Aurora, Theo, Thea, Katelyn, Romeo, Azam, Tomos, Lacey, Jolie, Cayden and Noah were our Students of the Week and announced as such in our online assembly. Well done to each and every one.
Recycling Week – Next week is Recycling Week, so we are asking our pupils to take part in a competition. We want them to build a model out of recycled materials at home, get a photo taken of them holding the model and either tweet it to the @rhosstreet Twitter account, email it to bryn.jones@denbighshire.gov.uk or print off the photo and bring it in. We will sort some prizes for the winners! I hope they enjoy making their models and the closing date for entries in Monday, September 28th.

Music Lessons – A video about how the Denbighshire Music Cooperative is preparing to restart music lessons safely has been posted to our Twitter acoount. A piano taster session has been organised for anybody interested on Wednesday next week.

Flu Letter – A letter has been attached to the email, giving further information and the date of the forthcoming flu immunisations. Please return any outstanding consent forms as a matter of priority. Many thanks.

Breakfast Club – We are monitoring numbers in Breakfast Club carefully and I would like to stress that we must be careful not to become congested. This service is only for parents who require childcare in order to get themselves to work. Please do not send your child if you are able to drop off at 9am instead. I would like to avoid having to make parents place bookings for Breakfast Club, so your cooperation here would be very much appreciated.

Covid-19 Protocols – I have emailed the latest Covid-19 guides for parents that we have received. One has been amended slightly from an earlier version sent out. Once again, I’d be grateful if you would refer to the documents in order to follow Public Health Wales guidelines correctly. For your information, if we have concerns that a child is displaying / complaining of Covid-19 symptoms in school, we will take the child’s temperature with a non invasive device. If the temperature registered reads 37.8 degrees or above, or other Covid-19 symptoms are suspected, we will contact parents to come and fetch him or her, plus any siblings. In line with the guidelines, you will be required to isolate as a family and to book a Covid-19 test for your child. Permission to return will be granted if the test is negative and you have subsequently provided the school with the relevant documentation as confirmation. As ever, thank you for your cooperation during these complicated times. It is very much appreciated.

Google Classroom – I will email enrolment codes for each Google Classroom today. If your child is yet to enrol in school, then please support them in doing so at home over the weekend. If there is a problem, let your class teacher know and we will sort it in school next week.

New Nursery – Our youngest pupils have settled wonderfully. They are already showing independence and getting on with activities with little fuss. The future is bright!

Giggles – Our Giggles pupils have also been enjoying themselves outdoors this week.

Yours sincerely,

Bryn D. Jones
Headteacher

September 11th 2020 Medi 11fed

Dear Parents and Carers,

The process of phasing back the pupils here at Rhos Street School is now complete. I am delighted that we have today welcomed all classes from Nursery through to Year 6 for the first time since the school was closed in March, due to the pandemic. Although we are yet to see how the home dismissal of everybody at the end of the day fares, everybody has been so co-operative and has followed the guidelines, procedures and signage so far, so I’m confident that all will be well. Consequently, we will be in a good place on Monday for what I consider to be the ‘official’ start of the school year. This newsletter should provide you with the final information required before next week. I understand that a lot of information has been shared with you over recent weeks, which I appreciate is a lot to take in, so please continue to bear with me!

New Restrictions in Wales – You’ll be aware that announcements are being made in Wales today, regarding protocols for numbers of people in gatherings and also on the wearing of masks for indoor public places. This has implications for our procedures at the end of the school day, in respect of Year 5 and 6 pick up. As parents are permitted to wait in the hall to avoid congestion outside, from Monday we will now respectfully request that masks are worn by all adults in the hall at this time. If you have an objection or an exemption for wearing a mask, then please wait outside the hall and we will dismiss your child to you out of the door.

We do have a significant number of parents and relatives who are coming into the main reception to the school office and under normal circumstances, that would be fine. However, as this is also an indoor public place, I am asking you to refrain from any non-essential visits and instead make a phone call or send an email. If it is essential that you visit the office by main reception, then once again, I respectfully ask you to wear a mask.

Now that everybody is back, I must continue to stress the importance of social distancing, for everybody to be patient, punctual and positive with one another. I am aware that Pen Barras have some problems with congestion on their side and I understand they are making attempts to mitigate those complexities. However, it may be useful for those who are able to take an alternative route onto the site to do so, in order to support Pen Barras’ attempts to overcome their difficulties.

PE Timetable – Now that we are ready to ‘go for it’ from Monday, I am now in a position to share the PE timetable with you. Children can come into school in their PE kit on their designated days. Please see the table below:

Monday – Year 1, Year 2, Year 3
Tuesday – Reception, Year 1, Year 2, Year 4
Wednesday – Year 5, Year 6
Thursday – Nursery, Reception, Year 3
Friday – Year 4, Year 5, Year 6

Music Lessons – Letters have been shared, giving pupils the opportunity to register for music lessons. Infant pupils applications will depend on the capacity of the Denbighshire Music Cooperative to offer lessons for their instrument of choice. Please ensure all remaining forms are returned on Monday.

FAO Year 6 Pupils – Ruthin Town Juniors U11s are recruiting new players for the coming season! If your son / daughter or someone you know is interested in joining the squad, please get in touch with coach Dale Prince (07843 084724 / daleprinnce76@yahoo.co.uk ) for more information.

New Pupils – We have been delighted to welcome a significant number of new pupils, with 13 additions to other classes on top of our new Nursery intake. A big welcome to everybody – pupils and parents alike to the Rhos Street community.

Blended Learning – I think it is important to be mindful that the possibility of classes, contact groups or indeed the whole school having to be sent home due to COVID-19 restrictions remains high. We have to be prepared. We are currently setting up new Google Classrooms for the 2020-21 academic year and will ensure that pupils will be undertaking activities via this platform in school. This will make sure they are logged on and set up for every eventuality. Once this process is complete, it would be useful for everybody to be also prepared at home, by ensuring that your child is also able to log on to your personal devices, so that we can iron out any complications in advance of potential restrictions. Your co-operation here would be appreciated and also I hope, reduce some of the pressure on parents if you once again have to take a lead with home learning in the future.

Little Princess Trust – Over the summer, Emily Debicka raised £787 after donating 14 inches of her hair to The Little Princess Trust! What a fantastic effort! Well done to her. Link for donations:
https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/julie-debicka

Air Ambulance – Trystan Evans, marked his 8th birthday, walking up Moel Famau 8 times raising money for Air Ambulance. Trystan was joined by his sisters and friends. What a generous thing to do! They raised £510. Link:
https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/maria-evans11

Returning forms – Please ensure that consent forms for flu immunisation have been returned on Monday, as well as any forms requested for new pupils who have joined us for this year. Many thanks.

Yours sincerely,

Bryn D. Jones
Headteacher

September 4th 2020 Medi 4ydd

Dear Parents and Carers,

We have now been open for two days and during that time, welcomed all of the Foundation Phase pupils back, as well as all of Year 3. It has truly been a delight to see those pupils again and they have slotted back in confidently and happily. There were only a few tears in Nursery too! It’s been great to see lots of familiar faces and new ones as well.

Thank you to everybody for arriving in such a calm and organised manner. Everybody is continuing to work together really positively to keep one another safe. We very much look forward to welcoming everybody else back early next week.

There will understandably be more and more human and vehicle traffic each day, so please remain patient and socially distanced. Once again, please refer to my recent correspondence to ensure you know all the important information regarding your child’s return to school.

Twitter – Twitter has increasingly become one of the main modes of communicating information across the world and the school’s account @rhosstreet has become a highly useful and very popular tool to share information, photographs and particularly any updates that need to be shared urgently regarding school business. I would highly recommend, if you are not already a twitter member, that you join and follow our account, to help you keep abreast of the latest news.

Further Lines of Communication – Parents of all Nursery pupils and new pupils should have received forms for them to specify how they would like to receive the newsletter. Remember that the school’s news and more can be found by logging on the school website at www.rhosstreetschool.co.uk. As mentioned earlier, up to date snippets and photos, as well as general nonsense can also be accessed by following our Twitter account www.twitter.com/rhosstreet. Photographs of activities can also be viewed on our Flickr page through a link on the website’s homepage. The PTA Facebook page is another source of important information. Links to all of the above can be found on the website.

Newsletter Format – Due to the pandemic and also for environmental reasons, we will only be sending the newsletter electronically from now on. It can be accessed in three ways: via email, twitter or the website. If you wish to be added to the mailing list, please email me.

Medical Information – If there is any medical information that you need to share with us regarding your child, then please do so, as a matter of urgency, so that we may update our records.

Personal Information & Contact Details – If you have recently changed your address, mobile telephone number or any other details, could you please inform us, so that we may update our records accordingly. Many thanks.

Admissions – Please see the attached letter regarding admission arrangements for Nursery, Reception and Year 7. The deadlines for applications are included and may I remind our new Nursery parents that they must make another application this year, in order to secure a place in the Reception class for next September 2021. Year 6 parents will also need to apply for their child’s Secondary School place. If you have a relative neighbour of friend with a child who will be of Nursery age by September 2021, I’d be grateful if you could pass on the information to them. Many thanks.

Flu Vaccinations – We have consent forms to share with all pupils regarding flu vaccinations. Please ensure that consent forms are returned by Monday September 14th, so that we can administer this process efficiently.

Free School Meals – Parents and guardians in receipt of direct payments for free school meals will continue to receive the payment for the first two weeks of term. Those receiving the payment will be required to use the funds to pay for their child’s meal while at school up until Friday, September 11. The last direct payments are being made on Monday, September 14 (for the week of September 7th – 11th) after which children eligible for free school meals will receive them in school free of charge.

Wellingtons – Could all pupils ensure that they have a pair of wellingtons to keep in school, so that we are able to use the grassed areas to maintain distanced contact groups during break times, even when the grass is inevitably wet. Many thanks.

Snacks – Also, please ensure your child has brought one healthy breaktime snack as well as a labelled water bottle each day. We hope to resume preparing and providing our own snacks, whenever the guidance allows us to do so once again.

Yours sincerely,

Bryn D. Jones
Headteacher

September 2nd 2020 Medi 2ail

Dear Parents and Carers,

The new school year is upon us and while we cannot yet say we are returning to normal, it’s certainly a step in the right direction. We are very much looking forward to beginning the process of welcoming our pupils back tomorrow and very much hope they are all looking forward to coming, meeting their new teachers and seeing their friends once again.

I understand that there will be many anxieties among some of our pupils as they return, but rest assured that their wellbeing, happiness and safety will be of the utmost priority to us all and we will do everything we can to ensure that the transition back into school will be smooth and comfortable. I hope this also gives parents and carers added reassurance, as I’m sure those anxieties will also be evident amongst yourselves. Please do not worry. We aim to make the school a happy and nurturing environment and create the best conditions we can for them to resume their learning. We have followed the safety guidance and the school has been made as safe as it possibly can be.

There are a few things I would like to bring to your attention and also remind you of, ahead of us opening our doors tomorrow. You have previously received the schedule of which classes are in on which days this week and next, as well as the breakdown of pupils in Nursery, Reception, Years 1, 2 and 3 attending tomorrow and Friday. There were many details I shared with you in my letter on August 21st and I’d be grateful if you could revisit the information included, to refresh your minds.

In addition, I would like to point out the following clarifications/amendments to arrangements:

Year 5 and 6 Pick Up – We are now asking for parents to enter the school hall at the end of the day to pick up their children. Please ensure you are socially distanced. The children will be dismissed in the hall.

Wellingtons – In order for us to be able to allocate playtime space for our 4 contact groups separately, classes will spend some time on the school fields. As the grass will be wet on many days, we request that all pupils bring in a pair of wellingtons to be kept in school, so they can wear them when they have their allocated time on the field. Please ensure they have their name on!

Walking Home – Year 5 and 6 are always given the option of walking to and from school on their own, subject to parental consent. If you wish to have that conversation as a family and give that permission, we have a form in school for you to fill and sign.

School Bags – In order to minimise the amount of items being sent in and taken home on a daily basis, we ask that unless your child is having a packed lunch prepared at home that your child does not bring in a school bag. We will however, be using book bags for reading books and homework for all pupils.

Year 3 – Miss Davies, Class 3 teacher, has been called at short notice for an operation, which will take place later this month. This means that for at least the first half term, Miss Davies will not be teaching Year 3 and we have once again asked Mrs Jan Hughes to step in to cover. You will all know Mrs Hughes well, as she so capably stood in for Mrs Liddy last year after her accident. I’m fully confident she will continue to do an excellent job for us. I’m sure you’ll all join me in wishing Miss Davies well and we look forward to her return.

Nursery Bags – Could Nursery pupil bags that include their change of clothes be kept in school on the children’s pegs please and not brought back and forth on a daily basis.

Nursery School Lunches
– When the new pupil forms have been received and processed, you will receive a log-in for Parent Pay. Once activated, your child will be able to have a school meal if they stay on for Giggles in the afternoon, which must be paid for in advance please. The current cost is £2.20 per meal.

Finally, I am appealing to everybody to please follow the national guidelines of social distancing on site. There will be many people attending at the same time, particularly at 3.15pm, so please be patient with one another, allow time for you to get where you need to go and please arrive and leave promptly so the flow of human traffic is as smooth as it can be.

We’ll see you all very soon!

Yours sincerely,

Bryn D. Jones
Headteacher

August 21st 2020 Awst 21ain

Dear Parents and Carers,

I very much hope you all remain well and are enjoying the summer. We are now approaching the final period of the holiday and I wish to update you and provide additional information regarding the new term. You will recall I wrote to you during the last week of term to outline our plans for the staggered reintroduction of all our pupils, so that we are able to confidently welcome the whole school back in advance of the expected date of September 14th. We have met as a senior leadership team and a Governing Body to discuss the structure further and will go ahead as initially planned. Below, I have shared the timetable with you once again and provided further details. I have also specified in the attached document on which day your child will attend when the Nursery, Reception, Years 1, 2 and 3 classes are split on the 3rd and 4th of September.

Timetable

Week 1
Day / Date Year Groups
Mon 31st Aug Closed for all – Bank Holiday
Tue 1st Sep Closed for pupils – Planning Day – LA organised
Wed 2nd Sep Closed for pupis – Planning Day – LA organised
Thu 3rd Sep Nursery (50%) / Reception (50%) / Year 1&2 (50%) – Mrs Liddy
/ Year 3 (50%)
Fri 4th Sep Nursery (50%) / Reception (50%) / Year 1&2 (50%) – Miss Bevan
/ Year 3 (50%)

Week 2
Day / Date Year Groups

Mon 7th Sep Nursery / Reception / Year 3 / Year 5 (100%)
Tue 8th Sep Year 1 & 2, Year 4 / Year 6 (100%)
Wed 9th Sep Nursery / Reception / All Juniors (Years 3, 4, 5, 6) (100%)
Thu 10th Sep All Foundation Phase (Nursery, Reception, Year 1&2) /Year 3/Year 6 (100%)
Fri 11th Sep All classes back

Week 3 Onwards – All classes in as ‘normal’

Further Information and Guidance

Contact groups – The guidance states that we should establish contact groups of pupils in the school. This helps us manage social distancing and also put measures in place to restrict those groups mixing with one another where possible. Contact groups are as follows: Nursery & Reception, Years 1 & 2, Years 3 & 4 and Years 5 & 6. Because of these arrangements, there will be no school assemblies, nor mass gatherings of pupils. Pupils will be expected to play outside within their contact group. Pupils for each contact group will have their own designated toilet.

Social Distancing – The directives regarding social distancing have changed somewhat over the summer with regard to pupils. The 2 metre rule no longer applies to children of 11 and under. We will however, whenever and wherever possible, be encouraging and reminding pupils of the need to remain apart as much as is practicable. Our staff will be asked to observe the guidelines to remain 2m apart at all times.

Hand washing – As before, all persons entering the building will be asked to wash their hands on entry and also expected to repeat at various times during the day.

School lunches – These will resume in the normal way, sat on class tables apart in the hall to maintain contact groups. Those having sandwiches will eat in class. Pupils having sandwiches should bring their lunch in a lunchbox and take it home each day.

School start and end time –These will remain as before- with school starting at 9am and finishing at 3.15pm. Please ensure you are punctual in dropping off and picking up. I’d also be grateful if you could ensure you do not arrive before 8.50am (unless you child attends breakfast club) and also leave the site promptly.

Breakfast Club – This provision will resume from September starting at 8am, but we ask that only pupils attend whose parents require it for childcare purposes in order to restrict numbers. Entry to Breakfast Club is via the hall door.

Giggles – Giggles will reopen from September. Please contact Anna for information.

After School Club – This provision will resume from September, with measures put in place to keep pupils safe. We will be using the hall to assist in maintaining distancing between contact groups. Again, please contact Anna or the office after we reopen to register.

After School Activities
– These are suspended for the time being, in order to maintain contact groups and allow us to focus on operating safely and in an organised manner from day to day.

Uniform – We request that pupils wear school uniform. We ask that all pupils ensure they change from their school clothes as soon as they return home each day.

PE – We want to avoid pupils changing in and out of their PE clothes while in school. On the days the pupils will be having PE, they will be asked to come to school in their PE kit. We will let you know on which days each class will have PE.

Pencil cases – We ask that each child brings in their own pencil case containing the following resources: writing pencil, eraser, sharpener, coloured pencils (5 max), ruler. This will be kept in school in their drawer which only they will access. Please ensure the pencil case is as small as possible, so it fits in the drawer.

Healthy Snacks – Snacks will not be provided by the school for the time being. Water and healthy snacks brought in by pupils must be clearly marked in a disposable bag. Please do not send in cakes for birthdays as we cannot share food.

Visitors – We will aim to restrict the amount of visitors entering the building. Any visitors will need to leave their name and contact details for ‘Test, Trace and Protect’ purposes.

Entry and Exit Points – You will recall I shared a video before the partial reopening of Rhos Street School in June. We are going to continue with the same arrangements, except for one specific area. Foundation phase parents will no longer go down the grass bank to leave the site. They are now requested to enter the gate via the path at the bottom and follow the top path on exit going down the zig zag path rather than down the bank. There will be a greater number of people on the site, so please work together to observe social distancing. Please remain patient with one another to achieve this. Please click on the following link to refresh your memory of the arrangements as outlined in the video – https://youtu.be/zmB1GPRuz7w

Where do I bring my child at the beginning of the day?
We encourage as many families as possible to walk their child to the school. We ask that only one parent walks their child to and from the site. Families should walk together but remain socially distanced from other families. Please do not arrive earlier than 8.50am and leave promptly after dropping off your child/ren. Any parents with buggies can pass their child on to a staff member in front of school, who will then guide them on site via the correct entrance. Any pupils on bikes can pass their bike to a staff member, who will then place it by the racks in front of the office. On arrival to school there will be a one way system. Please observe the signs. Foundation Phase pupils are to enter school via the lower gate and will be directed up the path to their class by a staff member. Parents can then go up the steps inside the gate and exit via the top Nursery gate. Years 3 and 4 are to enter the main reception door with Year 5 and 6 pupils to enter via the hall door. No parents will be permitted to enter the school building. Please only visit the office if it is completely essential, otherwise please telephone or email.
All pupils will travel in one direction to their classes to be welcomed by their teachers. There will be clear signage to help them travel in the correct direction safely. Foundation Phase pupils will enter via their classes external door after walking up the path. Years 3 and 4 will travel up the main corridor to their class. Years 5 and 6 will go through the hall, exit the other hall door and enter via their classes external door. Pupils will go straight into class and not assemble on the yard as they would normally do.
All pupils and staff will be asked to wash their hands on arrival to the site as well as on the following occasions:
– before and after handling food
– before and after handling objects and equipment that may have been used by others
– where there has been any physical contact
– after people blow their nose, sneeze or cough.

Where do I pick up my child at the end of the school day?
Foundation Phase will be dismissed via their cloakroom door. All Key Stage 2 pupils will be sent home via the same doors they entered the site, Years 3 and 4 will leave via main reception and Years 5 and 6 from the hall. Please wait in the parent pick up zone. May I once again ask parents to arrive on time, exercise social distancing and leave the site promptly.

New parents – There are a number of new families joining us at the beginning of term. These includes parents of Nursery pupils, but we also have many new pupils joining classes from Reception all the way up to Year 6. I understand that due to the lack of familiarity with the school and its site, that much of this information may be confusing, but please do not worry. There will be staff about at the front of school each morning to guide you in the right direction.

COVID-19 Guidelines and the school community – There are many procedures we need to follow as a school, to keep our school community safe and we take this responsibility seriously. In order to do this effectively, we must rely on the co-operation of every person who comes onto the school site and the people who live in those households. It is absolutely essential that everybody follows the guidelines and expectations in terms of quarantine, self-isolation and testing to ensure we do everything we can to mitigate the spread of the virus, particularly as we head into the autumn and the colder months. Please read the information below.

Procedures for illness – If a child develops symptoms of COVID-19 during the school day, they will be placed into sick-bay, parents will be called to fetch them and organise a test. They can return to school if they test negative and have recovered. However, isolation for positive cases is 10 days for the child and 14 days for other family members.

Quarantining – The government has specified that any families need to quarantine for two weeks on returning from holiday from certain countries abroad. If you have been abroad to any of those countries, please ensure you follow those guidelines.

Test, Trace and Protect – If you have been informed through the ‘Test, Trace and Protect’ system that your family needs to isolate, please do not send your children to school and follow the guidance you have been given.

Infection Control – We are provided with guidelines on how long pupils should be kept off school and I have attached them for your reference. As before, I must stress that you should not send your child to school if they are ill and this is ever more important now as a cough, and a temperature are also symptoms of many non COVID-19 illnesses, so if we do not co-operate with these procedures effectively, then the school could face significant disruption and potential risk of closure once again. I’m sure you’ll agree that’s the last thing we want!

Attendance
– Again, we need to work together closely in respect of attendance. If your child is absent from school, it is essential you inform us telling us the reason for absence. Please do by phoning the office and leaving a message. Alternatively, you can email me.

Times remain uncertain and the school community needs to work together closely and positively to ensure we manage this period effectively. When we reopened before the summer, everybody co-operated wonderfully and I’m sure I can count on your ongoing support and collaboration going forward.

As ever, if you have any further queries or concerns, please email me and I will respond.

Enjoy the rest of the summer break and we look forward to seeing you in September.

Yours sincerely,

Bryn D. Jones
Headteacher

July 17th 2020 Gorffennaf 17eg

Dear Parents and Carers,

I’m sitting at my desk on the last day of term, reflecting on what has been a tumultuous year. We all had to deal with the terribly sad and sudden loss of Jill before Christmas, before the onset of the COVID-19 crisis took increasing hold of our lives in every aspect. When the school year started in September, none of us had any idea what would be ahead of us, yet here we are having made it to the end of the summer term, still standing, still fighting the good fight and still ready for whatever comes next!

However, like everybody – staff and parents alike, I am delighted to be able to press pause, to switch off and step back from matters to do with school even if it is just for a little while, before planning resumes for opening in September. Everybody has played their part and I’m grateful to staff, parents, pupils and Governors for their ongoing efforts. We need to continue to pull together in the same vein going forward and I have no doubt that we will. There is a triumph in adversity and I told much the same to my staff this week; that they can hold their heads up high, knowing they have done great things in unprecedented circumstances. Many people from many different walks of life have stepped up superbly in this crisis and I hope this is one thing that will be remembered when all the dust settles. Those people include our Key Worker parents, whose childcare provision comes to an end today at the school. We are proud to have helped Key Workers in the Ruthin area to undertake their crucial work.

One would hope that home learning on the scale it has been taking place is coming to an end. The huge progress made in this area is one that surely can be built upon, but aligned more closely to the ongoing class activities, particularly if we do have to endure further restrictions at some point in the future. My thanks again go to you parents for the efforts made to support your child during this period. I know it hasn’t been easy, but I’m sure your endeavours have been very worthwhile and I have every confidence we will get everybody up to speed and back in the swing of things in no time, come the new term.

In terms of our staff, I wish Mrs. Lewis well as she begins her period of maternity leave in September, we wish a happy BIG birthday to caretaker Mr. Thomas over the holidays and I’d also like to thank Jayne Mayers who has superbly supported Class 2 and filled the gap left by the loss of Jill. We also look forward to welcoming Miss Sproston back from her period of maternity leave in September. Best wishes also go to cleaner Sophie Green, as her baby will be born over the summer!

Because of COVID-19, it’s been a long time since we’ve heard any news on the new yard, but I’ve sought an update from the Local Authority and have been provided with the following message:
“Work on the new yard is expected to start in the autumn of 2020. During the lockdown, work on the design of the yard and preparation of the tender documents has taken place. Progress has been impacted by the lockdown period but it is now intended for the tender for the work on the new yard to be published at the start of August 2020.
The site compound and access is planned to be created through Welsh Government land and the construction site will be securely segregated from the school. This will ensure the safety of site users and will enable the work to take place independently from the school.
A further update will be sent to confirm the appointment of contractor and start date of the work.”

There is also a Reading Challenge taking place this year and I have attached further details to your emails. I’ll also provide a link to a Sustrans active travel questionnaire, gathering information with the aim of increasing the number of pupils travelling actively to school. The survey will also help measure how Covid-19 has impacted on active travel uptake.

The partial reopening has been a big success and it’s been lovely to share some photos on Twitter of the pupils in class, on the field, on the yard and down at The Living Classroom. A special mention for Year 3 pupils who wrote to various Key Workers and had a lovely reply from the Glan Clwyd Intensive Care unit. I’m sure their letters lifted the spirits of all who read them.

We also got to say goodbye to our Year 6 pupils this Monday as they assembled, socially distanced, to come forward and receive their hoodies. Many of them have recorded goodbye videos and I’ll be sending a link to that video to Year 6 parents later today.

So there we have it! The end of year like no other, but with plans in place for hopefully calmer, gentler times in the near future. I’ll be in touch over the holidays as plans evolve, but in the meantime have a brilliant summer with your loved ones. Look after one another, stay safe and enjoy yourselves!

Yours sincerely,

Bryn D. Jones
Headteacher

July 10th 2020 Gorffennaf 20fed

Dear Parents and Carers,

It’s been another rewarding week, as pupils have returned equally positive and excited about spending time with their teachers. The arrangements have continued to work well, so a huge thank you once again to all!

We have but a week of the school year left and I’m sure with that fact comes genuine anticipation at the opportunity to draw a firm line at the end of an academic year like no other and be able to look forward we all hope to brighter, more straightforward times in the near future.

Here at the school, we seem to have spent the whole period of COVID-19 planning, reacting and responding to a whole range of challenges, with more facing us no doubt! From setting up Key Worker childcare, to establishing home learning, to planning and communicating how we were going to safely reopen the school, to then planning the class structure for the new academic year – there’s been lots to consider, much to organise, much to digest.

Now, following the Education Minister’s announcement that schools are to reopen fully by September 14th, we must once again take stock, think ahead and plan the best way to do this safely and in an organised manner. We must also consider how to use the two weeks at the beginning of September to ensure a smooth transition for new pupils, new year groups, pupils moving to full time education and those moving from Foundation Phase to Key Stage 2. I will be in meetings with the Local Authority, along with other Headteachers, over the next few days as well as liaising closely with my Senior Leadership Team, staff and Governors to ensure we use the time well and build capacity in the school to secure a safe organised process.

You’ve had to put a lot of trust in us over recent weeks and months and I very much hope you feel that your trust has been repaid, while we successfully opened safely for restricted numbers of pupils for the end of term. Now we ask you to do the same again, as we prepare to reopen in full. Rest assured that once again, we’ll do our very best to make Rhos Street School as safe as possible amid a positive happy environment in order for us to continue our work educating and nurturing your children. I will of course communicate clearly how we will approach this task in order to address any anxieties you will understandably have. As ever, we will all work together to make this work and once plans are in place I will let you know.

As is normal at this time of year, I am in a position to share with you the class structure for 2020-21.
Nursery – Eleri / Kelly
Reception – Mrs. Bourne
Years 1 and 2 – Miss Bevan and Mrs. Liddy
Year 3 – Miss Davies
Year 4 – Miss Price
Year 5 – Mrs. Davies
Year 6 – Mr. Davis

From the beginning of the Autumn term, Mrs. Lewis will begin a period of maternity leave, so Miss Price, who has of course been working with Year 4 for two years in both a full time and part time capacity in tandem with Mrs. Lewis, will take on the class full time for this period. We wish Mrs. Lewis well! I am also particularly excited also to see the team teaching approach taken in Years 1 and 2 with Miss Bevan and Mrs. Liddy. It is a model I’m very much looking forward to seeing develop and grow, as we move towards the introduction of the new curriculum in 2022.

We’ve also had to plan beyond September, as this is the time of year when I normally send out letters asking for deposits for residential visits to Nant BH in Years 5 and 6 and Pentrellyncymer in Year 4. However, I don’t think any of us are in a position to be committing to residential visits for the foreseeable future, so have postponed these activities that were due to take place in the Autumn term. It is disappointing, as they are always a highlight of the year and as we monitor the ongoing situation, I hope to be able to reschedule activities in the new calendar year. The Year 3 visit to Glan Llyn in January is still pencilled in but at present, I do not foresee that going ahead either, I’m afraid.

Year 6 is a year group I particularly feel sympathy for, because their final few months at Rhos Street, usually packed with opportunities and activities has been very different. However, we have organized a little ceremony on Monday 2pm, outside while socially distanced to present them with the hoodies kindly organised by Jo Jones. T-shirts will also be presented to those pupils who did not order a hoodie. We look forward to seeing them all together for once last time before we break for the summer. Could only one parent accompany each child please.

This time of year is often packed with transition activities, but as you’ll be aware, we can’t welcome our new Nursery to show them round, can’t introduce Year 2 to Key Stage 2, Year 6 haven’t been able to visit Brynhyfryd and our classes haven’t been able to move up to their new teachers for a morning. However, we have done our best to plug the gap. New Nursery parents have been sent information packs and introductory videos, on Google Classroom Junior pupils have been given the opportunity to share which projects they’d like to study from September, Year 6 have been sent a Power Point by Ysgol Brynhyfryd and finally, all teachers have recorded a brief video by way of introduction to their new classes in September. Those videos are being posted to Google Classroom for the pupils to view to help break the ice of getting to know a new teacher in September. I will also email links to the videos to each respective classes parents early next week.

Teachers have also this week and last, endeavoured to contact all families whose children have not yet returned to school, lending support and to check if everybody is ok. Messages have been left with families who have not been able to take the call, so please get in touch if we can help in any way.

All end of year reports have been sent out by now via email. If the email address you have previously provided us with has changed, please let me know and I will send you the report.

It seems such a long time since late March, yet in other ways, time has flown. With a week to go, I want to once again thank you all for your support and resilience while we’ve all hung in there! It is as ever, very much appreciated.

Yours sincerely,

Bryn D. Jones
Headteacher