Dear Parents and Carers,

I have said before that we will try to maintain a normal service at SWA for as long as we can. Our challenge is to minimise the risk to staff, students and parents while continuing to do the things that are important. I will continue to seek advice from those I trust and do what I think is best.

With reluctance we have decided that the parents evenings we have scheduled over the coming weeks for Year 8, Year 7 and Year 11 would add an unnecessary opportunity for the potential passing on of coronavirus to both teachers and parents. We have cancelled those events and will instead ask teachers to use the time to email the parents that they were scheduled to see with a brief overview of each child’s progress. If you have a specific concern, please feel free to contact individual teachers directly. If by the time of the Year 11 parents evening we feel it would be safe to go ahead we will, though that looks unlikely.

We have had quite a lot of queries about what to do if one child has symptoms that would cause them to self-isolate but a sibling appears fit and well. The advice from the government is that if you have a new, dry, continuous cough and/or a fever of 37.8°C or higher, you should self-isolate. There is no advice from the government about what to do for the rest of the family, so we are left to make those decisions independently. As the testing has now stopped for all but the most serious cases, most of us will never know whether we have had Covid 19 or not. We just have to take whatever precautions we can to slow down and limit the spread.

If one of your children has the symptoms above, I think it would be sensible to keep all children in the family off school.

Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you would like to discuss this issue further.

Andy Hunter