IMPORTANT NEWS AND UPDATES

CRANFORD COMMUNITY COLLEGE WISHES ITS COMMUNITY A VERY HAPPY EASTER, HAPPY VAISAKHI AND RAMADAN MUBARAK

UPDATED: WEDNESDAY 14 APRIL 2021 AT 6.35 PM (SCROLL DOWN FOR 'CONTENTS LIST')

 

LATEST UPDATES

NO RELAXATION OF THE ACADEMY'S SAFETY MEASURES YET

The ATB reviewed the success of the academy's comprehensive virus prevention, detection and control measures, the re-opening of the academy and preparations for the award of KS4 and Post 16 awards in summer 2021.

LOW COVID RISK AT CRANFORD: The board NOTED some of the reasons why the risk inside the academy is now assessed as 'low', including the continued high levels of compliance with safety precautions and health measures, a strong safety culture within the academy, the much reduced prevalence of the virus in the community, the significant reductions in hospitalisations and deaths following the most recent lockdown alongside the national vaccinations programme, the increasing numbers of people who have been vaccinated in the UK (including over 84% of Cranford employees and most regular contractors), the very small numbers of visitors and supply staff coming on to the academy site, the universal checks and declarations, the comprehensive testing of staff, students and visitors etc.

VACCINATION UPDATES: The board NOTED that national data shows that for those who have had their first jab there is a 60% reduction in getting any symptoms (even mild ones) and an 80% reduction in hospitalisations. Hence, there has been a huge reduction in daily deaths (down from 1,300 per day at its peak) and a 99.75% take-up of the second 'booster jab' which is confidently expected to further strengthen the level of protection afforded and to extend the duration of protection. Vaccination is not sufficient on its own to ensure safety though and the other precautions will need to remain in place for the present to avoid further outbreaks.

The majority of vaccinations given locally have been Oxford AstraZeneca and most employees have had no reaction or a mild reaction to either vaccine, and for those who have had their second vaccination, the majority report little or no side effects. 

The ATB NOTED that Cranford Community College will be an additional site for Covid vaccination after Easter 2021, to be run by a local pharmacy.

MEDIUM RISK IN THE COMMUNITY: The board also NOTED the Covid threat level in the community is assessed as 'medium' but with potential to worsen again and hence needs to be monitored closely. There are on-going and/or increasing threats including new variants, the poorer uptake of the vaccine in some groups, the start of a series of national relaxations with a 4-5 week delay in seeing if they cause any negative impact, the continued porous nature of international borders and the ATB NOTED that the situation in different countries changes regularly and suddenly so there are on-going changes to the list of red list countries. The ATB also NOTED the worsening situation on mainland Europe and in other countries globally (e.g. In addition to the RED LIST COUNTRIES, there are high infections rate in India, Brazil (Red list), Philippines, Turkey, France, Iran, Argentina (Red list), Poland, Germany, Columbia (Red list), Ukraine, Peru (Red list), Italy, Russia, Netherlands, Spain, Bangladesh (Red list), Iraq, Chile (red list)) and more countries are introducing third wave lockdowns.

Rapid testing, however, is expected to be extended to everyone in April 2021 and this, if widely adopted, may also help control and prevent outbreaks, as part of the wider set of strategies.  

COVID POLICIES AND PROTOCOLS: The ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that it would be premature to relax any of the academy's Covid safety protocols at this juncture.

CONNECTIVITY UPDATE: The ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that the loan of equipment (computers, headphones, broadband routers, etc) to students and staff should be continued until at least mid-August 2021 and the ICT procurement specification updated and procurement procedures recommence with the nominated trustee. 

RAPID LF TESTING UPDATE: The ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that the safest and best approach is for rapid testing by students to continue in school at least twice weekly (first thing on Monday and first thing on Thursday normally) as this will ensure better participation and comprehensive recording and tracking of results. It also allows support to be put in place immediately should anyone test positive.

At present, because of the lower risk generally, the ATB NOTED that there should be very few positive results expected at all from the Lateral Flow tests but the high engagement would mean that an increase in positive result would provide the academy with early warning of increasing risk in the community and allow the academy to prevent in school transmission by a combination of isolation and enhanced rapid flow / PCR testing. Since re-opening, the only positive cases have been symptomatic. 

The board NOTED speculation about the accuracy of rapid testing but also NOTED that symptomatic people will have PCR tests in any case and that Lateral Flow testing is intended to pick up asymptomatic cases that would otherwise be missed altogether. The rapid LF test is not a 'sensitivity' test like PCR but a 'frequency' test where the accuracy is achieved through repeated testing rather than a single test.  Accuracy of single tests though will be higher at Cranford because of the thorough training of students and staff and the fact that continuing tests in school allows for them to be supervised/supported, but the regularity of LF testing affords the best protection from using them. 

The ATB NOTED that Cranford Community College would be an NHS additional site for community testing in the case of a local surge in infections. 

DAILY CONTACT TESTING: The academy had volunteered to be part of a national research study to gather data on the effectiveness of Daily Contact Testing (DCT) but did not want to change its safety protocols as these have proved highly effective and has decided to undertake its own completely voluntary pilot instead and maintain all existing protocols.

The ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that, in the summer 2021 term, the academy should offer identified (lower risk) close contacts the opportunity to undergo 7 days daily testing alongside 2 PCR home tests (Day 2 and Day 8) as a means of reducing loss of on-site learning further. 

PUNCTUALITY ENFORCEMENT: The ATB NOTED that engagement levels during lockdown were very high and that attendance, engagement and punctuality since reopening are also high, well above local and national averages and that the academy had not operated a staggered return. 

The ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that, in addition to other reasons, student punctuality is also important to the smooth operation of the start of day safety protocols and that the academy should continue to strictly enforce this and refusing entry to those students arriving late as set out on the website. The ATB envisages this to be a permanent change to the attendance and punctuality procedures and a benefit of universal connectivity. 

MASK WEARING: The ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that its indoor and outdoor obligatory mask wearing rules will continue in the summer 2021 term, regardless of any national relaxations which may occur from May 2021. The ATB envisages that when it decides that masks are no longer compulsory part of the uniform / dress code/ school-day site expectations, suitable masks will still be allowed as an optional feature of the staff and student dress code.

Apart from the on-going risk of Covid for the foreseeable future, including next winter when the risk of transmission will be higher again, the ATB NOTED the contribution of mask wearing to the significant reduction in other respiratory illnesses such as the common cold and influenza and the benefits of reducing the prevalence of these next winter to maximise catch-up of learning and to relieve pressure on the NHS as it also catches up on its backlog.

Social distancing, enhanced hand hygiene and new cleaning methods have also likely contributed and will continue to be encouraged.

FAMILY / HOUSEHOLD TRAVEL OVERSEAS: The ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED to continue with its firm approach to the taking of term time leave. Families that have any member of the household who has travelled and is returning from overseas must declare this to the academy before any children come into the academy site. The traveller(s), which must not include school aged children, must serve their travel quarantine in full. The academy reserves the right to check that household quarantine has been observed, including seeing proof of date of re-entry into the UK, proof day 2 and day 8 test results and proof of travel route to check on potential transit via a red list country.

School aged children are not authorised to travel abroad during term-time, even in the case of a family emergency which necessitates a parent travelling. Term time leave will NOT be authorised by the headteacher. This is in accordance with government and local authority rules. Children who are taken overseas will be promptly taken off roll in accordance with the rules and reported to the 'children missing education' team, and in some cases the parents will be reported to the police or social care.  

CURRICULUM AND EXAMINATIONS: The ATB NOTED that student, staff and parents surveys regarding remote learning since January 2021 are extremely positive and students engagement remained high throughout.

Students, Teachers and Teaching Assistants followed their normal day, timetables and the full curriculum via 'face to face', beamed lessons on MS Teams, which were as close to normal as possible including small group work, homework, marking, etc.

Virtually all students returned to school on 8 March 2021 but a small number, including those 'Clinically Extremely Vulnerable' students and staff, who were still shielding at that point, joined their normal lessons and the rest of the class remotely. Students who have tested positive or been identified as contacts have been able to participate fully via beamed learning. Beamed learning is also a providing opportunities for reducing disruption in other situations such as when students have medical needs and the ATB supports the development of beamed learning to enhance student progress beyond the needs of the pandemic. 

The ATB NOTED that:

For Year 11 and Year 13, there will be no new content taught from the point of re-opening and the focus will be on revision of what has already been learnt and assessment based on that coverage, assessing what students should know, rather than what they do not know.

Year 13 internal exams have been re-calendared for the 2 weeks following the Easter 2021 break. They cover the course to date. The lessons of the last 4 weeks since reopening have focussed on what students need to revise to do well in these exams, and the students can use Easter 2021 to revise further. The internal exams are in keeping with the principles set out by examination boards to ensure that students get the fairest chance to do well in these exams and achieve good grades this summer, for example students will be told what broad areas will be assessed in these exams so they focus their revision on those broad areas. This provide evidence of how much and how deeply different students have learned within the topics being examined. In some respects it is not dissimilar to the AS exams which assessed at the same standard of difficulty but on a percentage of the content. They will potentially provide one of the three substantial pieces of evidence that could be used as evidence to back-up the Teacher Assessed Grades/Centre Assessed Grades. Year 13 is a cohort that should do well based on prior attainment and tracking data shows that those who retook the year due to last year's disruption have been working hard and making excellent progress so should reinforce outcomes. Performance should be strong in academic, vocational and technical qualifications this summer. 

There are a few students who will be sitting terminal exams this summer, particularly where they are on courses which provide a 'licence to practice' such as Children's Play. 

Year 11: Year 11 sat their mock exams before Christmas 2020 but have completed more of the course since then and will have also mature so they will be given another opportunity to demonstrate their learning across the whole course up to the end of the third lockdown and hence provide them with an additional opportunity to show their achievements and potentially provide up to date evidence that could inform their teacher assessed grades / centre assessed grades. Year 11 students will only sit one paper per subject with a combination of topics across the course. Students will also know which broad topic areas will be assessed so that they revise the right parts of the course specification and demonstrate what they 'can do'.. 

Year 12 and Year 10: Internal exams for these year groups have also been rescheduled for summer 2. The Academy Trust NOTED that these year groups are likely to be the first to return to externally assessed, national terminal examinations in summer 2022, even though their course learning will still have suffered from very significant Covid related disruption regardless of whether there is a fourth wave, lockdown or school closure. These year groups will need to be prioritised and may need intervention support to be sufficiently well-prepared in time for their final exams in summer 2022. The summer 2 exams would also provide a substantial piece of evidence to support Teacher Assessed Grades / Centre Assessed Grades in the event that terminal exams are suspended again in summer 2022. The Head Teacher will consider, on a case by case basis, whether the circumstances are still deemed exceptional to justify any student restarting a post-16 course.  

Teacher Assessed Grades: The ATB NOTED the guidance (see the academy website) provided by the JCQ and exam boards regarding the awarding of Teacher Assessed Grades (TAGs). The term Centre Assessed Grades (CAGs) is used to denote the fact that TAGs have been subject to an in-school moderation process to quality assure. The TAGs are a holistic grade which represents the student's performance, based on a range of evidence, for each qualification for which they remain entered. Evidence may draw upon the data marksheets for the 2 or 3 year of the course studied, substantial classwork or homework (including work completed in lockdown/school closure), performances, portfolios of work, internal assessments and exams, etc. TAGs are not a prediction of what students would have achieved and have to be backed up by evidence which shows the standard at which they are working. The academy has decided, and for moderation purposes, that there should be at least 3 substantial pieces of evidence that are retained which justify the TAG awarded. TAGs will be submitted by teachers by 4 June 2021 and subject to internal moderation before being sent to examination boards for external moderation. Centres will also be subject to evidence sampling as part of the external moderation process. 

Action: The ATB will review and endorse the centre policy outlining the processes and procedures followed to provide Centre Assessed Grades in the summer term 2021. 

The ATB NOTED that students will have to work just as hard to ensure their success this summer and that whilst TAGs are perhaps a fairer and better way to assess performance than terminal exams, they generate a great deal of additional work for teachers and academy staff. 

The ATB NOTED that results will be released for Post 16 on 24 August 2021 and GCSE on 27 August 2021. 

PASTORAL AND SAFEGUARDING: The ATB NOTED that student behaviour has been excellent, especially in terms of their serious and mature approach to Covid safety and their commitment to academic life this academic year.

The stresses and other consequences of three lockdowns and the pandemic generally has led to an increase in the presentation of urgent mental health needs and the academy is providing significantly more counselling support to both its students and employees for example.

The planned review and broadening of the remit of the Three Bridges Twilight School will include a focus on how it can be redesigned to better and proactively meet a set of needs for identified small groups of students to improve their curriculum and pastoral experience and learning and developmental outcomes.

Remote learning and outreach can be part of the solution for students whose learning may have been most disrupted such as those with emotional barriers to schooling, medical needs, those who return to education following a period of EHE, etc. This will be a more costly provision but necessary as there is no capacity to provide such support within the LA but the pandemic has spawned greater need. 

The academy is also in renewed and energetic dialogue with Senior Officers at the LA regarding any continued non-attendance and ensuring prompt and robust intervention, including specific intervention with/by the LA for any student that is absent for more than 15 days.  

The academy is concerned about the LA (for admissions/leavers, for FSM, etc), DfE (for attendance) and others (e.g. HEP for year 6 transition data) seeking to establish a remote connection to the academy’s Management Information System (MIS). The academy does not currently routinely allow third party access to our MIS database, with its vast array of sensitive personal data. We have not yet looked at the options, security and data risks, etc in sufficient detail nor selected any product as suitable for safe and secure interaction with our network. An added risk is that different organisations appear to be procuring different solutions which then would multiply the vulnerability of our networks to cybercrime, etc. The ATB NOTED that the DfE recently warned about the proliferation of successful ransomware attacks on schools. The ATB NOTED that the academy will need to be satisfied about the risks of all these portals before allowing a direct connection to our MIS, bypassing firewalls, etc.

NEXT REVIEW: The ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that the next review of the Covid Safety and Security Measures would be scheduled for the Full ATB meeting to be held soon after the Government has reached Step 4 of its national roadmap. 

The Government is currently expected to make its announcement about Step 4 on 21 June 2021 and, assuming this happens on time, the Academy Trust review would take place on Thursday, 1 July 2021 with any relaxations being introduced incrementally and proportionately from Monday 5 July 2021.

The Academy Trust will sequence any changes to rules with the aim of avoiding the need to reverse changes in the academic year 2021/22. Much will depend on the extent to which Covid-19 remains prevalent globally in its current form or as a variant. The academy will publish its roadmap to greater normality in July 2021.

PERMANENT IMPROVEMENTS: The ATB NOTED that some of the changes introduced as a result of the pandemic have proved to be positive and will want to be retained even when things return to a normality. 

Long term benefits, for example, will likely include:

  • Retaining the additional dining hall (Cranford Suite) to be able to continue with dedicated year group sittings and less crowding
  • Continued development of greater outdoor areas and furniture around the site
  • Hybrid 'Indoor / Outdoor' Community Lettings
  • Urgent development of larger, flexible classrooms on the ground floor of Block B (Vocation/Technical)
  • Continuing with virtual Parents Meetings via the SchoolCloud App
  • Retaining the enhanced cleaning and disinfection regimes
  • Continuing with remote Staff Briefings (e.g. allowing part-time staff and those on long-term leave to participate)
  • A new ICT strategy and procurement to include an infrastructure which supports remote learning (Full migration to MS Teams, portable devices suitable for home/school learning for every student, laptops suitable for home / school working for teachers, dedicated specialist equipment areas etc.) 
  • Other supportive technology (electronic message boards, No touch visitor registration, 
  • The development of the Three Bridges 
  • An enhanced website for better communication
  • Staff remote access to the academy network 
  • 100% connectivity for Staff and Students 
  • Online training 
  • Secure outer site during the school day, remote meetings
  • Beamed learning for those unable to attend school in person for good reason
  • Upgraded Community and Sports facilities (Sports Hall, Upper Gym, Dance Studio, Concert Hall, Community Showers/Changing Rooms to create easy clean surfaces) 

The ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that the 2020/21 budget and the 2021/22 budget plan be remodelled accordingly. 

In the interim, the ATB UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that the academy will continue to operate a dynamic risk assessment approach and will aim to encourage greater and earlier normality of activity for staff and students, where the risks have been addressed or mitigated (transferred, treated, tolerated or terminated) sufficiently by stricter and more comprehensive prevention, detection and control measures. 

Travel Policy Review: The academy will review and publish its staff and student travel / annual leave policy after the Government announces the outcomes of its review. This will likely need to be endorsed by the ATB electronically. 

 

CONTENTS LIST

  1. RE-OPENING HEADLINES
  2. IMMINENT CALENDAR REMINDERS (KEY DATES LIST)
  3. TEACHER ASSESSED GRADES, ASSESSMENT AND EVIDENCE FOR STUDENTS WHO WOULD HAVE SAT PUBLIC EXAMS THIS SUMMER ( NEW SUMMARY)
  4. THE GOVERNMENT'S ROADMAP (4 STEPS) 
  5. VACCINATION including link to highlights of the Public Meeting ('Vaccination Matters) In Ealing's Black and Brown Communities')
  6. INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL (FURTHER UPDATE EXPECTED 12 APRIL 2021) 
  7. COVID EMERGENCY FUNDING (LINK TO LA SUPPORT)
  8. SHIELDING UPDATE 
  9. CURRENT RISKS 
  10. STATUS UPDATE (ACADEMY = LOW TO MEDIUM RISK)
  11. REMOTE LIVE LEARNING ARRANGEMENTS (UPDATED FOR RE-OPENING)
  12. KEY INFORMATION FOR EMPLOYEES / WORKERS (UPDATED)
  13. COVID-19 VARIANTS

ANNEX1: LETTERS FROM THE HEAD TEACHER (ARCHIVE)

ANNEX 2: HEALTH & TRAVEL DECLARATION

ANNEX 3: SUMMER 2021 - OFQUAL CONSULTATION, CRANFORD'S RESPONSE AND OFQUAL'S DECISIONS

 

1. RE-OPENING HEADLINES

All students are back in school.

EQUIPMENT LOANS EXTENDED: loaned equipment (e.g., computers, broadband access, webcams, headsets) are envisaged to remain on loan to families at least until mid-august 2021 to support additional learning at home and to allow for further remote, beamed learning in specific circumstances

CATERING AND HOLIDAY SUPPORT

  • A full hot and cold meal service has resumed on-site: menu here
  • Fsm vouchers will no longer be provided.

Hounslow council will continue to provide (wonde) fsm vouchers in school holidays for those with 'benefits based' fsm. Hounslow council has stated its intention to do so for the remainder of the academic year.

Any families in need can seek emergency financial support (see section 9 below)

Local councils will also be running government funded holiday activities and food programmes during school holidays this year.

ATTENDANCE EXPECTATION: full school attendance (100%) is expected and all non-attendance will be addressed strongly. 

Full attendance also means arriving in good time for the start of school.

Full attendance has always been important but punctuality to school has never been so vital to public health as now that the new variant of coronavirus is prevalent in our community. 

Beamed / remote learning will continue for any student required to isolate due to covid and will be extended to some other legitimate absences.

Shielding has been paused from 1 April 2021 and until further notice and clinically extremely vulnerable students have an individual risk assessment. 

The staff / student dress code and academy student uniform requirements are fully operational again, including masks.

Uniform items can be ordered online from the academy shop. Collection arrangements will be advised following purchase.

ENTRY ROUTES: the designated entrance and entry route for each year group bubble must be used.

These will be open from 8.30 a.m. (earlier arrivals are via the reception gate)

  • Years 7 / 8: north (reception) gate entrance
  • Year 9: memorial garden gate entrance
  • Year 10/11: south gate (deliveries) entrance
  • Years 12/13: south bridge gate entrance

​all students must be within the academy grounds before 9.20 a.m. (at the latest)

Early arrival each day is essential and students must allow sufficient time for:

  • Temperature checks on entry
  • On entry washing / sanitising of hands
  • Spot checks on entry
  • Any unexpected delays on the way to school

The normal timetable and full curriculum is continuing to operate fully (as it did throughout lockdown)

Year 11 and year 13 extra-curricular revision lessons have resumed.

Extra-curricular outdoor school sports have resumed.

Some indoor extra-curricular activities have resumed on-site (where there is no mixing of bubbles) and others continue remotely for the present. 

The government is not allowing school trips at least until the summer 2021 term at the earliest.

TWICE WEEKLY RAPID COVID TESTING AND REPORTING 

Students are self-testing twice weekly during tutor time. Positive tests must be reported by law. 

Training and support for students undertaking nasal swab testing has been completed.

Testing in school also ensures there is rapid support for anyone who tests positive. 

Cranford has organised the new rapid student testing requirements so that there was no need to stagger re-admission to minimise unnecessary further disruption to learning. 

Testing is managed efficiently by deploying the entire staff for simultaneous testing first thing in the day to avoid any disruption to learning and ensure anyone testing positive does not spread the virus to others.

100% PUNCTUALITY IS ESSENTIAL TO TESTING AND VIRUS CONTROL

All those who use the government supplied free testing kits must report all 'positive' results to NHS 'test and trace' and are strongly encouraged to report their 'negative' and 'invalid' results online too.  

The government has announced testing for whole families of primary school aged, secondary school aged and college aged pupils, and for those in their childcare bubbles and their support bubbles (not primary aged children though) we encourage all our families to participate.  

Details are found here.

These family / adult test kits are not supplied by the academy and must be ordered online and collected from designated centres.

Twice weekly testing will also be offered, through this scheme, to all adults working in the wider school context such as visiting professionals, school transport drivers, bus drivers and volunteers in after school clubs (when open), etc. 

rapid testing is also available at community testing sites - click here for details

Punctuality spotlight: punctuality is vitally important to our covid safety strategy and to a return to normal learning.

Attendance and punctuality enforcement is being strictly applied.

Punctuality expectations: the academy requires every student to attend punctually on every school day.

Punctuality and full uniform compliance are reasonable conditions of entry.

All students must meet the academy's expectation of on-time arrival or accept the consequences.

Late arrival: entry will normally be refused to latecomers arriving if they arrive after the threshold time without prior agreement

Arriving late with accepted good reason: remote / beamed learning will normally be available to students with acceptable reasons for not being able to attend school fully on a particular day. Engagement via beamed learning in these circumstances will be counted as ‘present’.

Arriving late without accepted good reason: remote / beamed learning will not normally be made available to students who arrive too late to be admitted unless the academy accepts there is good reason. They will be considered as unauthorised absence.

The current round of bus strikes affecting route '111' are not an excuse as theses are well publicised in advance.

Essential medical appointments: special arrangements for late admission / re-admission will be offered for any student who is absent for part of the day by prior agreement (for example, when attending a pre-booked hospital appointment that also could not have been rescheduled out of school time) if this is preferred to remote learning on that day. Otherwise, they may be offered access to beamed learning and counted as ‘present’.

Students who feel unwell in the morning: should stay at home for the whole day and until fully better.

If necessary, they should isolate until they must isolate at least until they have the result from a covid PCR test. 

Mask wearing: the proper wearing of masks (i.e. Covering both mouth and nose) remains an obligatory uniform requirement everywhere indoors

The proper wearing of masks remains an obligatory uniform requirement at all times when social distancing of at least 2m is not possible outdoors.

The proper wearing of masks is also strongly encouraged in other higher risk places and when travelling to and from school.

Mask / face covering is a legal obligation on public transport, in shops, etc.

This aspect of the uniform policy is reviewed termly by the academy trust board. The next review is scheduled for 1 April 2021.

Social groups / gatherings: within school, social groups of more than 6 must not gather together. Off-site national covid laws apply.

Public transport: the use of public transport is strongly discouraged, except when essential. In such cases, tfl advice should be followed. 

Car sharing: for the avoidance of doubt, car sharing is not legally permitted at present except with someone from your household or legitimate ‘bubble’.

Travel quarantine / removal from the school roll

Families that have any member of the household who has travelled and is returning from overseas must declare this to the academy before any children come into the academy site.

The traveller(s), which must not include school aged children, must serve their travel quarantine in full.

The academy reserves the right to check that household quarantine has been observed, including seeing proof of date of re-entry into the UK, proof day 2 and day 8 test results and proof of travel route to check on potential transit via a red list country (see below)

School aged children are not authorised to travel abroad during term-time, even in the case of a family emergency which necessitates a parent travelling.

Term time leave will not be authorised by the headteacher. This is in accordance with government and local authority rules.

Children who are taken overseas will be promptly taken off roll in accordance with the rules and reported to the 'children missing education' team, and in some cases the parents will be reported to the police or social care.  

Restricted site access: unauthorised visitors must not come to the academy site.

The academy telephone number is 0208 897 2001. Callers can wait for reception to answer when the pre-recorded message ends, or dial #5555 during the message to connect to reception. 

New outer gates (vehicle and pedestrian) have been installed during lockdown to better secure the outer site. 

The outer site will be closed to ingress on or before 9.40 a.m. On weekdays and re-open briefly for egress only at the end of the school day.

Avoiding non-essential contacts / mixing: a 'no visitors' policy continues to be apply in all but exceptional and controlled circumstances.

Telephone, video calling, ms teams and email may be used as alternatives to ‘face to face’ meetings in person. 

Necessary site visits by professionals and contractors must be 'by prior appointment only', for the minimum time needed to achieve the objective and subject to passing rigorous entry checks, including temperature measurement, proper PPE including properly wearing a mask indoors at least, wearing a visitor bib, completing health & travel declaration, rapid testing on arrival, adhering to covid rules such as social distancing, etc. 

All pre-existing contractors have been advised of the academy's covid safety protocols and have agreed to adhere to them. 

New / additional covid safety measures

  • The health and travel declaration has been updated to reflect the risk from other variants and 'red list' country quarantine (for household members - school aged children must not travel)
  • Strict safety protocols / checks will be enforced for any household member returning from overseas, including via any 'red list' country (including short transit within an airport)
  • Visiting professionals and contractors must be tested daily prior to admission
  • Enforcement of punctual arrival to the academy every day has been tightened
  • The outer site will be secured throughout the school day. No exceptions
  • Lateral flow testing will occur on arrival on the scheduled days and support will be available to anyone testing positive
  • Academy staff test at least twice weekly and must report their results online
  • Students will be able to test twice weekly on-site* and report their results online
  • Some staff and students may be given the opportunity to test daily for a fixed period 
  • Families are encouraged to test twice weekly in the home and/or at community rapid testing facilities
  • The national vaccination programme is advancing rapidly and 85% of cranford staff (and many of its regular contractors) have some degree of covid immunity already; the vast majority through vaccination. 

Vaccination is proven to reduce the transmission of the virus to others as well as protect against serious illness and death.

  • All adults in our community are strongly advised to take the jab without delay as soon as it is first offered and make sure they book their second jab asap and within 12 weeks.
  • Note: if your jab was arranged by your GP, then they will contact you for the second jab and you cannot use the national booking service.

Senior staff phoned every family prior to reopening to talk through the arrangements for re-opening, testing, examinations, safety and expectations as well as answering any questions that parents/guardians/students may have had.

 

2. IMMINENT CALENDAR REMINDERS / KEY DATES

  • MONDAY 19 APRIL 2021: FIRST DAY OF SUMMER 2021 TERM
  • MONDAY 19 April 2021: YEAR 13 INTERNAL EXAMS COMMENCE
  • ​THURSDAY 29 APRIL 2021: YEAR 10 SUBJECT EVENING ON SCHOOL CLOUD (BY INVITATION ONLY)
  • TUESDAY 4 MAY 2021: YEAR 13 INTERNAL EXAMS COMMENCE

 

3. TEACHER ASSESSED GRADES, ASSESSMENT AND EVIDENCE FOR STUDENTS WHO WOULD HAVE SAT PUBLIC EXAMS THIS SUMMER

The 2021 summer GCSE, A Level, Vocational and Technical examinations have been cancelled and replaced with teacher assessed grades.

The decision on how teacher assessed grades will be awarded has been published by The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) who regulate qualifications, examinations and assessments in England. It states:

  • Teachers must assess their students’ performance, only on what content has been delivered to them by their teachers, to determine the grade each student should receive
  • Teachers can use evidence of a student’s performance from throughout the course to inform their judgement
  • Teachers should determine the grades as late in the academic year as is practicable, to enable teaching to continue for as long as possible
  • Schools and colleges should use a broad range of evidence across the taught content to determine the grades before submitting the grades to the exam boards. Ofqual and exam boards will provide more advice about the range of evidence that centres will be able to use to support their teachers’ judgements

It is important to acknowledge that students have had a challenging two years of learning with continuous disruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Each student’s experience has been different and it is important that every teacher considers every student, what they have been taught, what they have learnt and how they have performed over the two years.

Students will not be penalised for circumstances beyond their control such as school closures, illness in te household or family, poor internet connection, a lack of access to devices and the social and emotional impacts of living with the pandemic.

Instead they will be given opportunities both in class and at home, in controlled environments and in normal lessons, to demonstrate what they have learnt and what they are capable of achieving when covering content they have been taught and feel confident with.  

On returning to school on 8 March 2021 teachers will ensure that they use the time in class to consolidate the learning that has already taken place and focus on the content that has been taught to them to date. 

Teachers will not, therefore, be introducing new content at this point.

This will enable teachers to ensure the teacher assessed grade awarded to students is accurate and evidence based.

In line with Ofqual decisions, teachers will use a broad range of evidence to determine the teacher assessed grade for each student.

Department data. Throughout the course students are continually assessed using a range of assessment opportunities. For example classwork, homework, end of unit/topic assessments, presentations, coursework and project work, mock examinations, internal examinations. This data is entered onto the department spreadsheet and forms an overall picture of each student’s knowledge, skills, understanding and progress.

Termly data entry. From September 2019 teachers have awarded termly assessment grades based on the department data. These grades are moderated during an extended department data focus meeting to ensure they are accurate and reflect all the evidence. These grades are then reported home to parents/carers as part of reporting cycle.

Predicted grades. From September 2020 students have been awarded predicted grades based on evidence from classroom assessments, end of unit/topic assessments, presentations, coursework and project work, mock examinations, internal examinations. These predicted grades have been updated in November 2020, February 2021 and will be again in May 2021 to reflect the continued learning and progress made by students.

Data entry is also scrutinised, and sometimes moderated, by the senior leadership team to ensure it is accurate and in line with expectations based on the prior performance of individuals and cohorts.

In addition to the data held by departments teachers will collate a minimum of three pieces of substantial work completed by the student that demonstrates the student’s level of achievement.

At least one of these pieces of work must have been completed under controlled conditions.

This portfolio of work will be available for quality assurance of the grade awarded.

Evidence of classroom assessments, end of unit/topic assessments, presentations, coursework and project work.

Class teachers will collate evidence of past paper questions marked and moderated by class teachers, coursework and project work marked and moderated by class teachers and the department, other end of unit/topic assessments marked and moderated by class teachers and departments. Some of these assessments will have been completed under controlled conditions.

Evidence of marked and moderated exam scripts:

Year 11 completed formal exams under controlled condition in December 2020.

Year 13 completed diagnostics exams at the end of Year 12 July 2020 and at the beginning of Year 13 September 2020.

These exam papers have been marked and moderated in departments using exam board mark schemes.

In order to gather evidence of a recently marked and moderated exam script for each subject, internal exams have been scheduled for Year 13 and Year 11.

The purpose of the internal exams is to give all students the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge, skills and understanding for each of their subjects.

The purpose is to assess what the students know, and NOT what the students don’t know.

The grades awarded for these exams will form one part of the evidence along with all of the evidence already listed.

Year 13 internal exams start on 19th April 2021.

Students will sit two papers per subject.

Papers will be no longer than 2 hours.

Students will be issued with a timetable shortly.

Sitting these papers at this point will enable four weeks of teaching to prepare students and a further four weeks after they have been marked to support students with continuing to demonstrate their learning via other forms of assessment.

Departments will set the exam using past paper questions and materials provided by exam boards. The exams will be reduced in content, scale and time and provide only one part of the evidence which contributes to a student’s final teacher assessed grade.

Students entitled to access arrangements will have these provided.

Year 11 internal exams start on Tuesday 4th May 2021.

Students will sit one paper per subject.

Papers will be no longer than 1 hour and a half.

Sitting these papers at this point will enable the maximum amount of teaching time to prepare students for this opportunity to be assessed on what they have learned in controlled conditions.

Departments will set the exam using past paper questions and materials provided by exam boards. The exams will be reduced in content, scale and time and provide only one part of the evidence which contributes to a student’s final teacher assessed grade.

Students entitled to access arrangements will have these provided.

Year 12 students due to take GCSE English or Mathematics in summer 2021 will also sit one exam paper per subject at this point.

Students entitled to access arrangements will have these provided.

Vocational and Technical qualifications

Awarding organisations, e.g. Pearson for BTEC and OCR for Cambridge Nationals and Technicals, have adapted their qualifications and assessments to address the disruption to teaching, learning and assessment. These adaptions include a reduction in the number of units for the award.

There may be further adaptations that the awarding organisations will put in place based on a set of objectives set out by Ofqual.

The awarding organisations will communicate any further adaptations to school and colleges and we are ready to respond.

Year 10 and Year 12 Vocational and Technical students will sit an internal exam paper in the summer term as part of the Year 10 and 12 exams.

Quality assurance

Through the internal quality assurance process the academy will ensure that every student is awarded a teacher assessed grade for every subject they study that is accurate, evidence based and has been robustly scrutinised.

The academy’s internal quality assurance arrangements will include reference to exam board training, data analysis, portfolio of evidence scrutiny and consideration of the academy’s profile of results in previous years.

Ofqual require exam boards to put in place requirements for centres’ quality assurance. We await the guidance from the exam boards and are ready to respond.

The head of centre will submit a declaration by confirming that the requirements for internal quality assurance have been met. 

 

4. THE GOVERNMENT'S FOUR STEP 'ROADMAP'

MILESTONES

  • STEP 1A: MONDAY, 8 MARCH 2021
    • SCHOOLS OPEN (COVID PRECAUTIONS WILL STILL APPLY)
    • THE CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER FOR ENGLAND, PROFESSOR CHRIS WHITTY AND THE DEPUTY CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER, JONATHAN VAN TAM, ENDORSE THE FULL RE-OPENING OF SCHOOLS ON 8 MARCH 2021
    • SCHOOL ATTENDANCE WILL BE COMPULSORY FROM 8 MARCH 2021 AND PENALTY FINES REIMPOSED
    • NO CHANGES ARE NEEDED TO THE MASK WEARING POLICY AT CRANFORD, BUT OTHER SCHOOLS WHO HAVE WEAKER SAFETY MEASURES MUST INTRODUCE SIMILAR OBLIGATIONS SUCH AS CLASSROOM MASK WEARING
    • OUTDOOR AFTER SCHOOL SPORTS ALLOWED 
    • 2 PEOPLE CAN SIT TOGETHER OUTDOORS
    • CARE HOME RESIDENTS ALLOWED ONE REGULAR VISITOR (COVID PRECAUTIONS STILL APPLY)
    • FUNERALS OF UP TO 30 PEOPLE CONTINUE
    • WEDDINGS WITH UP TO 15 GUESTS CONTINUE
  • STEP 1B: MONDAY 29 MARCH 2021
    • OUTDOOR SPORTS FACILITIES RE-OPEN
    • CRANFORD'S COMMUNITY SPORTS FACILITIES PARTIALLY RE-OPEN, INCLUDING OUTDOOR FOOTBALL
    • TRAVEL OUTSIDE THE LOCAL AREA ALLOWED
    •  NON-ESSENTIAL INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL REMAINS ILLEGAL
    • SIX PEOPLE OR TWO HOUSEHOLDS ALLOWED TO MEET OUTDOORS
  • STEP 2: ON OR AFTER 12 APRIL 2021 (IF DATA ALLOWS)
    • NON-ESSENTIAL RETAIL AND SHOPS RE-OPEN (COVID PRECAUTIONS STILL APPLY)
    • PERSONAL CARE SERVICES RESUME E.G. HAIRDRESSERS, ETC (COVID PRECAUTIONS STILL APPLY)
    • OUTDOOR HOSPITALITY RE-OPENS E.G. PUBS, RESTAURANTS, ETC. (COVID PRECAUTIONS STILL APPLY)
    • INDOOR LEISURE RE-OPENS E.G. GYMS, SWIMMING POOLS, ETC. (COVID PRECAUTIONS STILL APPLY)
    • NOTE: SCHOOL ORGANISED SWIMMING WILL RESUME FROM NEXT ACADEMIC YEAR.
    • CRANFORD'S COMMUNITY SPORTS FACILITIES FULLY RE-OPEN
    • SELF-CONTAINED HOLIDAY ACCOMMODATION RE-OPENS
    • ANNOUNCEMENT ABOUT INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL ENVISAGED / ACADEMY TRAVEL GUIDANCE UPDATED FOLLOWING THIS ANNOUNCEMENT
  • STEP 3: ON OR AFTER 17 MAY 2021 (IF DATA ALLOWS)

    • SIX PEOPLE OR TWO HOUSEHOLDS ALLOWED TO MEET INDOORS (COVID PRECAUTIONS STILL APPLY)
    • INDOOR HOSPITALITY, CINEMAS, MUSEUMS, THEATRES, SPORTING EVENTS AND HOTELS RE-OPEN (COVID PRECAUTIONS SUCH AS SOCIAL DISTANCING STILL APPLY)
    • MOST OUTDOORS SOCIAL CONTACT RULES LIFTED (E.G. RULE OF 6 OUTDOORS REPLACED BY A RULE OF 30)
    • SEATED OUTDOOR SPORTING EVENTS WITH UP TO 10,000 SPECTATORS ALLOWED
    • CAR SHARING MAY BE ALLOWED (SUBJECT TO CONFIRMATION)
  • STEP 4: ON OR AFTER 21 JUNE 2021 (IF DATA ALLOWS)

    • ALL LEGAL LIMITS ON SOCIAL CONTACT REMOVED (COVID PRECAUTIONS STILL RECOMMENDED)
    • CRANFORD'S COMPULSORY UNIFORM / DRESS CODE POLICY (MASKS REQUIREMENTS) LIKELY TO BE RELAXED (SUBJECT TO CONFIRMATION)
    • MOST COVID PRECAUTIONS STILL RECOMMENDED OR IN PLACE AT LEAST UNTIL END OF THE ACADEMIC YEAR
    • IT IS HOPED THAT A MECHANISM WILL ALSO BE FOUND TO ALLOW THE FINAL CLOSED SECTORS OF THE ECONOMY TO RE-OPEN (THIS PRESUMABLY INCLUDES INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL)

FURTHER INFORMATION:  

  • IN THE 4 WEEKS BETWEEN REOPENING AND THE EASTER 2021 BREAK, THE SCHOOL HAS ALMOST NO CASES OF COVID AND ZERO IN SCHOOL TRANSMISSION THANKS TO THE STRONG SAFETY REGIMES IN PLACE. 
  • THE PM EXPLAINED THAT WHILST THERE IS A GOOD BASIS FOR OPTIMISM ABOUT THE FUTURE, THE SPEED OF EMERGENCE FROM LOCKDOWN WILL DEPEND ON SUSTAINABLE DECISIONS IN THE HOPE OF MAKING A FOURTH LOCKDOWN UNNECESSARY. HE INDICATED THAT THE APPROACH (ROADMAP OUT OF LOCKDOWN) WILL NEED TO BE 'CAUTIOUS BUT IRREVERSIBLE'. HE SAID THAT PEOPLE SHOULD BE 'OPTIMISTIC BUT PATIENT' AND THAT THIS IS NOT THE TIME TO RELAX. 

 

5. VACCINATION

  • More than 32.3 Million people have received the first dose and are due to have a second dose within 12 weeks
  • More than 8.2 Million people have already had their second dose

 

  • CLICK HERE TO UNDERSTAND WHY YOU MUST STILL TAKE PRECAUTIONS EVEN AFTER HAVING BOTH JABS

 

  • The first does of the vaccine should give you good protection from the effects of Covid-19 but you will need to have two doses to give longer lasting protection
  • Even when vaccinated, you could still become mildly infected. The vaccines prevent severe disease, not infection, so you could still carry the virus unknowingly and pass it on to others so you must continue to socially distance, wear masks and clean hands and surfaces, etc. 
  • A small percentage of those vaccinated get mild, and occasionally, moderate side effects like headache, feeling tired, feeling achy, etc. and these can be treated with painkillers like paracetomol. 
  • The Covid-19 vaccine does not contain any animal products, nor egg
  • You must still get vaccinated even if you are sure you have had the virus already
  • The vaccine does not have any effect on fertility and it is important that those who are pregnant or might get pregnant still get vaccinated
  • The World Health Organisation confirms that there is no evidence that the Oxford vaccine has any association with blood clots. Some European countries have made political decisions to halt the use of the Oxford vaccine but those countries are short of sufficient vaccine supplies and may need to control demand. 
  • The NHS will never charge for Covid-19 vaccines. They are entirely optional
  • The U.K. has completed Phase 1 of its vaccination programme and is well advanced in Phase 2
  • London is currently lagging behind other areas of the country in terms of vaccination roll-out, with some BAME communities being particularly disproportionate
  • The Secretary of State says that a research study on the University of Oxford Astra-Zenica vaccine shows that its efficacy is higher at 12 weeks than second jabs administered within six weeks of the first 
  • The Pfizer vaccine is recommended for a second dose at 3 weeks and there is no data to know the impact of not administering a second dose for 12 weeks 
  • Phase 2 started on 15 February 2021, is well advanced and should complete by the end of the April 2021. It will prioritise as follows:
    • 65-69 year olds
    • 16-64 year olds with underlying health conditions (People whose asthma is under control will not be prioritised for the Covid vaccine) 
    • 60-64 year olds
    • 55-59 year olds
    • 50-54 year olds
  • Phase 2 may advance at a slightly slower rate than phase 1 because it will coincide with people needing their second dose, but will be faster if vaccine supplies remain strong, which is the prediction. 
  • Cranford will work in partnership with the NHS and local pharmacies to offer vaccination on site soon. 
  • The Secretary of State for Health says that the NHS has good capacity to roll out even more vaccines as they become available so if there is additional vaccine available then the programme may be delivered faster and/or other priorities may be added
  • The Government expects that all adults in the UK will have been offered a vaccine by 31 July 2021. 
  • In addition to the Mass Testing Centres, Cranford Community College may be used in Phase 2 as a community vaccination centre, both for Public Health / NHS Hounslow and for community pharmacy vaccinations
  • The U.K. Population totals around 67 Million people, of which 14 Million are under 18 years old
  • The Government currently has not announced any plan to vaccinate children (under 18 year olds). The national vaccination plan is aimed at adults over the age of 18 with some exceptions for a minority of children with particular underlying health conditions.
  • The U.K. is now undertaking a research study on the effectiveness of vaccines on those under 18 years of age and this could lead to a future decision to offer the vaccine to children but there are no current plans to do so. 
  • The Secretary of State for Health states that there is high confidence that the vaccine reduces serious illness and death for those who have it, from approximately three weeks after receiving the jab
  • The Secretary of State for Health also says that a person who has been vaccinated may still be infected, although the vaccine means that they will not normally get ill or so ill. Hence, they may also still transmit it to others, but probably to a lesser degree
  • Vaccine trials and the roll out in other countries show that whilst the vaccines are highly effective for most people, no vaccine is 100% effective
  • Whilst we would all hope to see very good progress made by the start of the academic year 2021/2022, there is much further to go in the U.K. and internationally to bring the virus under control and vaccination needs to be widespread in every country, not just the U.K.
  • It is expected to take some time to vaccinate a sufficiently high proportion of the population for them to contribute to 'herd immunity' and greater normality, and precautions and control measures will continue to be necessary for the foreseeable future
  • On current projections:
    • More than 32 Million adults in the U.K. will have been offered the vaccine by the start of May 2021 (actual immunity coverage required deduction of the percentage who do not take up the offer and the percentage for who the vaccine does not work)
    • Up to 53 Million adults in the UK will have been offered the vaccine by the end of July 2021 (actual immunity coverage required deduction of the percentage who do not take up the offer and the percentage for who the vaccine does not work). Actual coverage might be more realistically 40 Million people (60 % of the population)
    • Around 14 Million people under the age of 18 will be unvaccinated (although those over 16 with clinical vulnerabilities will get vaccinated) and some will have had Covid-19 and have developed immunity
  • There remains a competition between the percentage of the U.K. and global populations that are vaccinated and the continuing mutation of the virus around the world. It is important, therefore, that all countries vaccinate their populations as quickly as possible
  • The U.K. is also trialling the effectiveness of mixing two similar acting vaccines from different manufacturers for dose 1 and dose 2, as if this is as effective, this would create flexibility which would then speed up the vaccination programme and reach more people earlier
  • It is not yet known how long protection may last after a double dose vaccination and it is possible that people will need to take annual boosters to maintain immunity
  • the Moderna vaccine has not yet been approved but will increase testing capacity when it is approved, expected soon

The categorical, moral imperative

  • Vaccinating the UK population will not, on its own, address the risks from new variants of the virus. Protecting oneself by vaccination is not sufficient whilst the virus continues to mutate elsewhere
  • Equitable and rapid global vaccination is morally and practically necessary to limit mutations and for a global economy to work effectively
  • The risks to the UK population of mutation must also be obviated by helping the rest of the world and all nations to vaccinate their populations as rapidly 
  • Richer nations like the UK need to operate with 'enlightened self-interest' which means not just prioritising UK citizens for vaccination and not hoarding vaccines or operating 'vaccine nationalism'. 
  • The UK and other wealthy nations that have signed up to it NOW need to actively participate in the COVAX scheme and the World Health Organisation's three pillars of the Access to Covid-19 Tools (ACT Accelerator)

 

6. INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL (Government announcement expected on 12 April 2021)

  • SCHOOL AGED CHILDREN MUST NOT TRAVEL ABROAD EVEN IN A FAMILY EMERGENCY
  • We all must remain alert to infection transmitted from abroad
  • There should be no international travel happening at all now unless it is absolutely necessary and very few things are absolutely necessary. Holidays are illegal under the current restrictions
  • LEAVE DURING TERM-TIME WILL BE UNAUTHORISED, STUDENTS MAY BE REMOVED FROM THE SCHOOL ROLL AND THE VACANT PLACE ALLOCATED TO A CHILD ON THE WAITING LIST WHO IS IN THE UK. THE CIRCUMSTANCES WILL BE REPORTED TO THE LOCAL AUTHORITY AND, WHERE APPROPRIATE THE POLICE AND SOCIAL CARE
  • The academy must be informed without delay if any of the household members or contacts of our staff, families or contractors have been overseas. In most cases, the child will still be able to attend school but with additional monitoring measures. 
  • Employees are CURRENTLY required to advise the Executive Head Teacher in writing of intended travel plans, prior to booking, using vouchers, rescheduling postponed travel arrangements or confirming bookings. 
  • Further details of the government's stance on international travel are expected to be announced on 12 April 2021 but staff, parents and students must also adhere to any relevant school policy, which will be updated and re-published following any changes to the national rules. Students must abide by the school rules or be subject to disciplinary measures. 
  • The academy will, hence review, its policy shortly (after 12 April 2021) and communicate any changes via this section of this page on the academy's website. 
  • Attention must still be given by employees and workers to the probability of quarantine in other countries and on return to the U.K. and the obligation to work. The academy cannot accept any financial or other losses arising from staff / worker travel decisions and arrangements. All such risks rest with the traveller
  • Obligatory 10 day quarantine of UK Citizens and those with legal residency in the UK is currently required from 33 'red list' countries.
    • The first traveller must pay for the quarantine (transfers, testing, full board accommodation, security and post-stay cleaning but the room will not be cleaned during the stay) at a cost of £1,750, and up to a further £1,750 (totalling £3,500) if they test positive and need to quarantine for a further 10 days. Other costs, such as laundry may be additional
    • Another adult staying in the same room will cost a further £650 and each a child between 5-12 years in the same room is £325
    • Hence, if two parents and one child share a room, it will cost £2,725 initially rising to £5,450 if any of them were to test positive on the second PCR test (Day 8 with result on Day 9 or Day 10)
    • This potential cost is important for anyone considering travelling anywhere for the foreseeable future. 
    • In Scotland, like in many other countries, this obligatory hotel quarantine applies to any Citizen or resident entering the country from anywhere in the world outside the UK and Ireland (not just the red list countries).
    • It is feasible and entirely foreseeable that the UK could extend the list of countries requiring obligatory hotel quarantine at any time, including whilst travellers are overseas
    • As it stands, therefore, an employee travelling overseas this summer, could find themselves and their family obliged to stay in a quarantine hotel at their own expense for 10-20 days, use up all their leave or lose their pay for this period and be liable for any additional costs the academy suffers as a result
    • The above scenario would be similar for students and their families

 

7. COVID EMERGENCY FUNDING FOR FOOD AND ESSENTIAL SUPPLIES

Hounslow Council also has Covid Emergency Funding to support individuals and families in need, this could include those in 'food poverty' but who are not eligible for benefits-based FSM and even to Hounslow residents who normally have 'no recourse to public funds'.

Details of the emergency grant scheme can be found HERE

 

8. SHIELDING UPDATE 

Shielding has been paused with effect from 1 April 2021.

Those who were identified as Clinically Exteremely Vulnerable are resuming working and schooling but will still have an individual Covid Risk Assessment. 

9. CURRENT RISKS

The risk assessment was reviewed following the PM's announcement and the risk status updated (see below)

The Main Risks factors re-evaluated include:

  • the existence of new variants which could be more virulent or vaccine resistant (and the time taken to adapt the existing vaccine if necessary). Entry check and testing can help mitigate this risk 
  • the fact that secondary aged children can catch the new U.K. variant as easily as any age group and develop symptoms. Entry check and testing can help mitigate this risk 
  • the rates of infections, hospitalisations and deaths which are dropping rapidly but still need to reduce further. Education and Covid security practices can help mitigate these risks
  • the easier transmission of the new variants of Coronavirus.  Education and Covid security practices can help mitigate this risk.
  • In-school mixing will occur as there is no practical means of achieving social distancing in classrooms for example but is mitigated by wearing masks, fresh air ventilation, good hygiene, some social distancing, etc. Good Covid security will help mitigate these risks 

Most sensible precautions can easily be achieved (mask wearing indoors and outside, hygiene, disinfection, good ventilation, etc) in our school.

We are now testing all regular staff and regular contractors at least twice weekly who have to attend site, with all ad hoc staff and contractors testing daily before admission. Students will be testing on return to school and twice weekly going forward, and families will be encouraged to do so as well. 

The academy has tough precautions in place which have proved highly effective in avoiding transmission last term, and this provides strong evidence that the academy was successful in remaining 'Covid Secure' at all times. These will be updated regularly and before re-opening to reflect contemporary data and threat levels. 

We know that the predominant new variant of coronavirus (COVID-19) is more transmissible however, PHE advice remains that the way to control this virus is with the system of controls, even with the current new variants. Nevertheless, the academy has enhanced its measures. 

Prevention

Always: 

1) Minimise contact with individuals who are required to self-isolate by ensuring they do not attend the school.

2) Ensure face coverings are used in recommended circumstances at least.

3) Ensure everyone is advised to clean their hands thoroughly and more often than usual.  

4) Ensure good respiratory hygiene for everyone by promoting the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach.

5) Maintain enhanced cleaning, including cleaning frequently touched surfaces often, using standard products such as detergents.

6) Consider how to minimise contact across the site and maintain social distancing wherever possible.

7) Keep occupied spaces well ventilated.

In specific circumstances:

8) Ensure individuals wear the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) where necessary.

9) Promote and engage in asymptomatic testing, where available.

Response to any infection

Always:

1) Promote and engage with the NHS Test and Trace process.

2) Manage and report confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) amongst the school community.

3) Contain any outbreak by following local health protection team advice

THERE IS SOME VERY ENCOURAGING NEWS:

There are many very positive signs of lowering covid-19 risk at present including:

  • The recent peak in infections has passed and without hospitals being overwhelmed
  • The data on infections, hospitalisations and deaths are all decreasing as a result of lockdown
  • There is now evidence that the vaccine is proving highly effective in practice 
  • The r-rate has fallen below 1 (between 0.6 and 0.8)
  • Hospitals have more / improved coronavirus treatment options (most recently combining tocilizumab with steroids to enhance their impact) and greater experience of how to successfully treat and rehabilitate covid-19 patients
  • The more precise targeting of all the most high-risk people to shield will alleviate the greatest pressure on the NHS, reduce deaths further and create capacity within the NHS to manage urgent non-covid related needs such as cancer treatments
  • There is much greater availability of both community and workplace lateral flow testing
  • All secondary aged pupils will be able to test twice weekly
  • There is good capacity for community PCR testing.
  • There is greater willingness for people to get themselves tested regularly (at least weekly) without waiting for symptoms
  • There are more walk-in test centres
  • Workplaces with 50 or more employees can now order free lateral flow tests for their employees to test regularly on-site or at home
  • All school staff in primary and secondary schools are already voluntarily being lateral flow tested twice weekly (3 or 4 days apart).
  • Secondary aged pupils will have a similar opportunity from 8 March 2021. 
  • Families are encouraged to test regularly in the community (at least weekly)
  • There is proactive 'surge testing' in a number of areas to monitor and control the spread of new variants
  • Limited additional border controls have been introduced for those arriving from 33 'red list' countries including full 10 days quarantine in designated hotels with obligatory follow-up testing prior to release (days 2 and 8) if negative or to extension of quarantine for a further 10 days (if positive)
  • There is optimism that UK holidays and perhaps limited international travel could resume by the summer 2021
  • The national vaccination programme is on-track with over 90% of the highest risk people having been offered the vaccine
  • The second phase of vaccinations has started on time. The vaccine will be offered to:
    • Everyone over 50 years of age
    • Everyone over the age of 16 who is clinically vulnerable / has certain underlying health conditions
    • Those qualifying for their second dose within 12 weeks of the first dose
  • Everyone in phase 2 should be offered their first dose before the end of April 2021.
  • The vaccine rollout schedule is based on expected deliveries of the vaccine
  • Hence, before the end of April 2021, 99% of those most at risk will have been vaccinated
  • If more vaccine supplies are acquired earlier, the vaccination rates could be sped up
  • Phase 3 will include the remainder the adult population and those from phase 2 still needing their second dose within 12 weeks of their first jab  
  • It is expected that all adults will have been offered both doses by 31 July 2021
  • It is crucially important for everyone to attend the appointment for their second jab. Some (circa 75%) protection is afforded to most people within 2-3 weeks of the first jab but the second booster jab is needed to give stronger and longer protection (circa 95%)
  • The pandemic is not over simply when the UK is vaccinated. There is a global need for vaccination to control the virus. Hence, it is highly likely that, for this year at least, a re-engineered booster vaccination to combat mutations of covid-19 will need to be administered alongside the normal winter flu-jab roll-out
  • In addition to personal protection against illness and/or death, having the vaccine offers some reduction in transmission and so protects others.  
  • The prioritisation of vaccine roll-out will always be decided by the joint committee on vaccination and immunisation (JCVI), not the government

 

NOT ALL THE NEWS IS GOOD YET:

  • The number of infections locally has dropped significantly but is still high in our area and needs to reduce further 
  • The pandemic has become very much more real for more of our community since Christmas 2020 and the new variant. The statistics are, in fact, real people. A number of our families have experienced terrible losses of loved ones; parents, grandparents and close family members. Every loss has been tragic. Our thoughts and prayers are with families affected by covid-19
  • The new UK variant is up to 70% more infectious and up to 30% more virulent than the virus in the autumn 2020
  • The new UK variant also affects all age groups including secondary aged pupils
  • Other variants may create a need for a re-engineered booster vaccine for autumn 2021
  • There are fake news stories and misinformation about the pandemic and vaccines which are putting some people off taking the vaccine and hence putting themselves and other at risk of dying
  • The faster that everyone is vaccinated, the less likely that a new vaccine-resistant mutation will develop (it is important therefore to encourage everyone to take-up their vaccine offer)
  • This is a global pandemic and so vaccinations need to be distributed quickly across the globe and not just a few richer countries
  • The lowest rates of vaccination take-up is among some BAME communities, putting these communities at greatest risk of covid-19 infection and death and, of covid-19 continuing to be spread to others In our community, people of Pakistani heritage are the largest group that show a much lower take-up of vaccinations. The black afro-Caribbean and Bangladeshi communities also show low take-up
  • No vaccine is 100% effective but data from a study of 1.2 million vaccinations in Israel shows the Pfizer vaccine mirrors the performance in the original research trials at over 94% effectiveness in all age groups in protecting against covid symptoms
  • Beamed learning will continue where isolation is required

10. STATUS UPDATE:  MIXED RISK

  • THE RISK IN SCHOOL ESTIMATED TO BE LOW 
  • THE RISK IN THE COMMUNITY IS CURRENTLY MEDIUM
  • The NHS has passed the peak of infections without becoming overwhelmed and numbers continue to drop although remain higher than desired
  • consequently, the U.K. alert level has been lowered from 5 to 4, but not yet 3
  • The virtual school will continue to operate for selected students after re-opening
  • Arrangements for the continuation of parallel, virtual teaching in the case of staff and/or students absence will be advanced
  • Those colleagues who are classified as 'Clinically Extremely Vulnerable' have had shielding extended the shielding to 31 March 2021. 
  • Consideration will have to be given to the status of those who have received their first dose, second dose vaccine and those who have recovered following a positive case of Covid
  • Consideration will have to be given to the status of those who live with vulnerable people who have been vaccinated or recovered from Covid-19 as they decrease the risk if there are high enough numbers
  • Consideration / advice will be given to those who will need to return to using public transport
  • Consideration will be given to any relaxation of lockdown rules / laws
  • Group meetings on site will remain restricted to remote meetings (telephone, conference call, email or video-call type meetings) only until further notice
  • One to one communication will continue to be encouraged to be via email, telephone or teams/zoom, and staff should not approach any colleague or other person, except in exceptional circumstances and should ensure any such interactions are Covid secure
  • The academy remains oversubscribed in all year groups
  • Completing essential premises projects will have a greater urgency for September 2021
  • Further partitioning of workspaces may be carried out over the coming weeks 

11. REMOTE 'LIVE' LEARNING ARRANGEMENTS (UPDATED FOR REOPENING)

  This information is intended to provide clarity and transparency to students and parents or carers about what to expect from remote education where;

  1. Where individual students are self-isolating at home and
  2. National or local restrictions require entire cohorts to remain at home, including the whole school.

All students will return to school on 8th March 2021 and at this point the current remote ‘live’ face to face teaching using Microsoft Teams for the whole school will cease and students will attend lessons in school.

Cranford Community College will continue to deliver a full curriculum and full-time provision for all students on school site. Form time starts at 9.30am and students are expected to arrive to school in good time, prepared for a full day of learning following their timetable. Year 11 and 13 will also attend intervention sessions before and after school to consolidate their knowledge, skills and understanding in each of their subjects.

Remote education provision at Cranford continues to evolve and improve as teachers explore new technologies and software and incorporate innovative practices into their lessons.

  1. Remote education for self-isolating pupils

There will be occasions where students have to self-isolate at home for a period of time.

Where individual pupils need to self-isolate but the majority of their peer group is in school, how remote education is provided will differ from the approach for whole groups. This is due to the challenges of teaching pupils both at home and in school at the same time.

If my child is not in school because they are self-isolating, how will they access their lessons?

Self-isolating students will continue to follow their full timetable and the same curriculum and attend lessons as they would if they were in school.

Self-isolating students will be invited to join form time at 9.30am daily and lessons being taught in school remotely using Microsoft Teams.

Students are expected to be available at the start of the lesson to accept the call to join the lesson.

Students should engage fully in the lesson answering questions when asked, working in pairs or groups if appropriate and asking questions if they are stuck. The student will complete the learning in ‘real time’ and will send the class teacher the completed work by either Teams chat or email for marking and feedback.

The class teacher will make the resources available for that lesson for students to access on Microsoft Teams.

Students must ensure they are organised every day with their device, their microphone and their camera turned on.

If a student is unable to join the lesson live they must contact the teacher to inform them and contact remotehelp@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk for technical support.

If a student requires resources such as exercise books, pens, pencils, art equipment these can be posted or delivered to the student’s home. Students should ask their class teacher for resources when needed and the class teacher will arrange for them to be sent home.

Will my child be taught broadly the same curriculum as they would if they were in school?

All students follow the same curriculum remotely during self-isolation as they would if they were in school. Students will be invited to join the lesson by their class teacher at the start of the lesson.

Some adaptations will be made for the practical subjects such as art, drama, music, PE. Teachers will take into consideration the resources students are likely to have access to at home and will make them as practical as possible.

It is very important that students continue to follow a broad and balanced curriculum including the more practical subjects.

Enrichment activities such as Mind, Body, Soul, Prefect Committee meetings, mentoring and more will continue to be a feature of the curriculum.

How long can I expect work set by the school to take my child each day?

It is very important that all students follow their school timetable when self-isolating and learning remotely.

Learning will start at 9.30am with form time and registration and will end at 3.10pm. Students will attend 5 lessons per day and will have two breaks. Some sixth form lessons start at 8.40am and end at 4.00pm.

Homework will also be set and therefore students will be expected to continue their learning after 3.10pm as they would if they were attending school.

How will my child access any online remote education?

Students will need access to a device such as a PC or laptop, a microphone, camera and the internet in order learn remotely.

Students should download Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams onto their device.

Class teachers will call the students at the start of the lesson and students will accept the call and join the lessons. Students must be ready at the start of the timetabled lesson to join and then to participate in the lesson.

If my child does not have digital or online access at home, how will you support them to access remote education?

We recognise that some students may not have suitable online access at home. In order to support those students to access remote education the school has loaned out PCs and lap tops and provided dongles for those students and staff in need of an internet connection. In addition the school has loaned out cameras and headsets to enable students to fully engage in lessons and their learning.

If your child does not have access to a device or the internet contact Ms Jenkins tje-cc@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk or your child’s form tutor who can arrange the delivery of equipment to enable your child to learn remotely.

A dedicated remote help email has been set up for students to use if they have any difficultly accessing their learning, configuring their device or any issue with their equipment or passwords. Students should email remotehelp@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk

What are the school’s expectations for my child’s engagement and the support that we as parents and carers should provide at home?

We thank parents for making every effort, however inconvenient, to keep Cranford Community College students that are self-isolating at home and engaging with remote learning. We recognise the additional burden this can create and we are keen to support parents too, so they can better support their children. 

All students are expected to be fully engaged with their remote education. This means that every student should log on to Microsoft Teams at 9.30am for form time and registration and then stay engaged in learning for the whole day.

At the start of every lesson the teacher will invite your child to the lesson. Throughout the lesson the teacher will expect the students to take part in active learning communicating with the teacher throughout the lesson. At the end of the lesson the teacher will tell students when to leave the call so that they can go to their next live lesson.

Parents can support by ensuring their child does join their lessons at the start of every lesson and encourage them to stay engaged throughout the lesson and the whole day.

How will you check whether my child is engaging with their work and how will I be informed if there are concerns.

A register will be taken at the start of every lesson. If a student is late joining they will be marked late. The teacher will interact with your child during the lesson to ensure they understand the work and are engaged. Students may be asked to answer questions, join group discussions and submit work during or at the end of the lesson.

If a student does not attend lessons, is frequently late, does not complete the work set or becomes disengaged the class teacher, form tutor or Head of Year will contact home to reset expectations. Parental and carer support is very important for sustained remote learning to take place.

Where there are barriers to engagement parents or carers should contact the school to discuss these. If it is regarding a device the parent or carer should contact Ms Jenkins by email tje-cc@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk. If the barrier to engagement is something else then the parent or carer should contact the Head of Year for their child.

How will you assess my child’s work and progress?

Class teachers will include assessment opportunities within the lesson. These may be informal such as individual answers to a question presented to the class or a quiz or more formal such as end of topic or mid topic assessments. Teachers will mark the work, make a judgement on their progress and feedback to the students with a next steps comment.

Students will be given written or verbal feedback and next steps comments on their work regularly and at least once every 4 lessons.

How will you work with me to help my child who needs additional support from adults at home to access remote education.

We recognise that some pupils, for example some pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), may not be able to access remote education without support from adults at school and at home. We acknowledge the difficulties this may place on families, and we will work with parents and carers to support those pupils.

Teaching assistants continue to support those students with SEND needs. Teaching assistants attend lessons with the students and during the lesson they provide individual support. Outside of the lessons, teaching assistants communicate with the students and their parents by Teams meetings, Teams chat and phone calls.

If my child is self-isolating and is unwell do they have to attend lessons?

If your child is unwell contact the school to speak to the attendance officer. Inform her that your child is unwell and won’t be able to attend lessons that day. The attendance officer will inform the class teachers. 

Once your child is well enough they must attend every lesson on time and be fully engaged.

What will happen if my child’s teacher has to self-isolate?

If the class teacher has to self-isolate and is well, the teacher will be ‘beamed’ into the classroom and will teach their lessons from home. A teacher or teaching assistant will be in the classroom in school to support.

Remote education, safeguarding and behaviour

Cranford Community College and class teachers have the same high expectations of behaviour when students are attending school remotely as they have when students are attending school in person. The school behaviour policy applies at all times whether students are learning at home or at school.

Students have read and signed a Remote learning expectations and classroom rules for students which clearly sets out behaviour and safeguarding expectations.

Remote learning expectations and classroom rules for students

  1. I will attend all of my lessons on time.
  2. I will wear suitable clothing to my lessons and will tell others in my household to also be suitably dressed.
  3. My device will be in an appropriate area, for example downstairs at a table and where possible be against a neutral background. Not in a bedroom.
  4. I will not invite anyone else to the lesson.
  5. I will turn on my camera.
  6. I will stay muted unless I am verbally contributing to the lesson.
  7. I understand live face to face classes will be recorded so that if any issues were to arise, the video can be reviewed.
  8. My language will be respectful and appropriate and I will ensure anyone else in the house is also respectful. I will do this by telling my household that I am in a lesson.
  9. I will be respectful towards other participants in the lesson.
  10. If the chat function is used in the lesson I will be respectful and kind to others.
  11. If I have a question about the lesson I will email my class teacher.
  12. If I am worried about someone or something I see or hear in the lesson I will contact either:

The safeguarding lead Miss Jenkins tje-cc@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk or

The deputy safeguarding lead Miss Berndt rbe-cc@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk  by email.

 

Signed  _____________________________________  (student)

 

Date __________________

 

  1. National or local restrictions require entire cohorts, including the whole school, to remain at home.

What should my child expect from immediate remote education when the whole school or their whole year group is learning from home?

All students at Cranford Community College follow the same timetable when learning remotely as they would if they were learning in school. Students attend morning registration every day, year group assemblies, all timetabled lessons and where appropriate revision and catch up sessions.  A student is engaged in learning from 9.30am to 3.10pm with two breaks with some Sixth Form lessons start at 8.40am and end at 4.00pm.

All lessons will be live and face to face. Teachers will call students at the start of the lessons using Microsoft Teams and students should accept the call and join the lesson. Live face to face lesson allow students to interact with the teacher and other students, work in small groups and is as close as possible to learning in school. It provides a social aspect that supports your child’s wider development and their emotional well-being.

Will my child be taught broadly the same curriculum as they would if they were in school?

All students follow the same curriculum remotely as they would if they were in school. Lessons are taught ‘live’ face to face using Microsoft teams.

Teachers will use a range of teaching strategies and resources to ensure the lessons engaging, interactive, curriculum focussed and enable students to learn and progress.

Some adaptations will be made for the practical subjects such as art, drama, music, PE. Teachers will take into consideration the resources students are likely to have access to at home when planning and delivering these lessons and will be innovative and creative to make them as practical as possible.

It is very important that students continue to follow a broad and balanced curriculum including the more practical subjects.

Enrichment activities such as Mind, Body, Soul, Prefect Committee meetings, mentoring and more will continue to be a feature of the curriculum.

How long can I expect work set by the school to take my child each day?

It is very important that all students follow their school timetable when learning remotely.

Learning will start at 9.30am with form time and registration and will end at 3.10pm. Students will attend 5 lessons per day and will have two breaks. Some sixth form lessons start at 8.40am and end at 4.00pm.

Homework will also be set and therefore students will be expected to continue their learning after 3.10pm as they would if they were attending school.

How will my child access any online remote education?

All lessons are taught live and face to face using Microsoft Teams.

Students will need access to a device such as a PC or laptop and the internet in order learn remotely.

Students should download Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams onto their device.

Class teacher swill call the students at the start of the lesson and students will accept the call and join the lessons. Students must be ready at the start of the timetabled lesson to join and then to participate in the lesson.

If my child does not have digital or online access at home, how will you support them to access remote education?

We recognise that some students may not have suitable online access at home. In order to support those students to access remote education the school has temporarily loaned out PCs and lap tops and provided dongles for those students and staff in need of an internet connection. In addition the school has loaned out cameras and headsets to enable students to fully engage in lessons and their learning.

If your child does not have access to a device or the internet contact Ms Jenkins tje-cc@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk or your child’s form tutor who can arrange the delivery of equipment to enable your child to learn remotely.

A dedicated remote help email has been set up for students to use if they have any difficultly accessing their learning, configuring their device or any issue with their equipment or passwords. Students should email remotehelp@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk

How will my child be taught remotely?

Lessons will be taught by the class teacher live and face to face using Microsoft Teams.

Teachers will use a range of teaching materials and resources such as powerpoints, assignment sheets, online quizzes, collaborative work in small groups, 1-1 teaching where appropriate all delivered using Microsoft Teams.

Teachers may also refer students to other web sites such as BBC Bitesize, Seneca, GCSEPod, HegartyMaths many of which are already used by the students.

If a student requires resources such as exercise books, pens, pencils, art equipment these can be posted or delivered to the student’s home. Students should ask their class teacher for resources when needed and the class teacher will arrange for them to be sent home.

Many text books have been made available for students on Microsoft Teams and further resources are continually added.

What are the school’s expectations for my child’s engagement and the support that we as parents and carers should provide at home?

We thank parents for making every effort, however inconvenient, to keep Cranford Community College students at home and engaging with face-to-face remote learning. We recognise the additional burden this can create and we are keen to support parents too, so they can better support their children. 

All students are expected to be fully engaged with their remote education. This means that every student should log on to Microsoft Teams at 9.30am for form time and registration and then stay engaged in learning for the whole day.

At the start of every lesson the teacher will take a register. Throughout the lesson the teacher will expect the students to take part in active learning communicating with the teacher throughout the lesson. At the end of the lesson the teacher will tell students when to leave the call so that they can go to their next live lesson.

Parents can support by ensuring their child does join their lessons at the start of every lesson and encourage them to stay engaged throughout the lesson and the whole day.

How will you check whether my child is engaging with their work and how will I be informed if there are concerns.

A register will be taken at the start of every lesson. If a student is late joining they will be marked late. The teacher will plan learning activities that will measure student engagement throughout the lesson such as interactive quizzes, question and answer sessions, work on assignments that can be viewed by the teacher in real time, assessments to be handed in at the end of the lesson, collaborative group work and feedback during the lesson, use of white board, chat function for individual contributes and more. If a student does not attend lessons, is frequently late, does not complete the work set or becomes disengaged the class teacher, form tutor or Head of Year will contact home to reset expectations. Parental and carer support is very important for sustained remote learning to take place.

Where there are barriers to engagement parents or carers should contact the school to discuss these. If it is regarding a device the parent or carer should contact Ms Jenkins by email tje-cc@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk. If the barrier to engagement is something else then the parent or carer should contact the Head of Year for their child.

How will you assess my child’s work and progress?

Class teachers will include assessment opportunities within the lesson. These may be informal such as individual answers to a question presented to the class or a quiz or more formal such as end of topic or mid topic assessments. Teachers will mark the work, make a judgement on their progress and feedback to the students with a next steps comment.

Students will be given written or verbal feedback and next steps comments on their work regularly and at least once every 4 lessons.

How will you work with me to help my child who needs additional support from adults at home to access remote education.

We recognise that some pupils, for example some pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), may not be able to access remote education without support from adults at school and at home. We acknowledge the difficulties this may place on families, and we will work with parents and carers to support those pupils.

Teaching assistants continue to support those students with SEND needs. Teaching assistants attend lessons with the students and during the lesson they provide individual support. Outside of the lessons, teaching assistants communicate with the students and their parents by Teams meetings, Teams chat and phone calls.

 

12. KEY INFORMATION FOR EMPLOYEES / WORKERS

 

GENERAL

  • Policies and Procedures remain in force and operating during the pandemic and lockdown without change in most cases. Where small adaptations are required, these will be made known to employees. If in doubt, employees must ask SLT and not make assumptions of change
  • A key aim remains to achieve a reasonable balance between the needs of running a fully operational academy with efforts to minimise risk and reduce household mixing
  • Rules and expectations may become tougher when the ambient risk rises and be relaxed to a degree when it reduces but, in the main, the safety precautions are likely to remain in place throughout the pandemic and a few potentially longer term or permanently
  • The academy evaluates bespoke risk / individual circumstances and then either eradicates the risk altogether, for example through redeployment, or mitigates (reduces) it, for example through risk assessment guidance provided such as the 'household guidance' for those living with someone who is vulnerable or in a household with someone who is symptomatic/positive
  • Individuals and employees must always check the contemporary national lockdown guidance for themselves and not rely on what others have told them as a defence for breaking the rules
  • 'Guidance' is not the same as regulation, although it may, of course, also include regulation. However, it is widely understood, accepted and long-standing practice that official guidance (e.g. government guidance, academy policies, etc) must always be adhered to unless there is a substantive, exceptional and rational reason which is truly believed at the time to justify deviation from the guidance, for which there is no compliant alternative and which would likely stand up to subsequent scrutiny. In short, official / professional guidance usually must be followed regardless. There is generally no scope for applying filters such as ‘professional or personal judgement’ as a justification for ignoring such guidance. Official guidance is normally a collective summary of professional judgement

 

'NORMAL' WORKING

The academy will operate with quasi-normality throughout and will remain operational in most regards, even with most children working from home.  

All colleagues will continue to work as ‘normal’ and full-time on site (or temporarily working at home as directed for example during shielding or isolation) unless they are too sick to work, in which case they must follow the standard procedures for reporting their daily absence, etc. which have not changed AND the Covid reporting protocols additionally if appropriate.

Public sector employees in childcare and education are expected to continue to work throughout national lockdowns. Most employees are therefore ineligible for furloughing and will continue to work, on-site or possibly temporarily off-site. Please also read the section ‘Working from Home’ below.

Unless in receipt of a furlough letter, employees are not released from any obligation to work and are being redeployed as necessary. Furloughed staff will continue to receive full pay until further notice as the current scheme pays 80% of the salary costs and the ATB is choosing to top the remaining 20% up for the remainder of the national furlough scheme. Employees not furloughed will continued to be paid in full and receive their full conditions of service in return for their continued work and obligations.

Employees (Critical Workers) with young children must have in place appropriate childcare arrangements in the home, or where appropriate using the key working provision is schools and all EYFS settings. 

All academy procedures (including LOA requests, absence reporting, setting work, etc) must be followed as though the academy were operating completely normally.

Lettings, however, will remain closed in accordance with national lockdown rules but will re-open when safe and cost-effective to do so.

 

WORKING HOURS (NO CHANGE)

Regardless of whether a colleague is given the option to work from home or is on-site, they are required to work during their normal working hours unless they request and are granted a variation to their working hours or their working hours have been formally changed due to the shortened school opening hours. 

The academy day for colleagues, children and parents will remain the same as before and after lockdown. 

 

RECEPTION AND OPENING ARRANGEMENTS

The outer site pedestrian and vehicle gates are now fully operational and staff will need to use their ID card to enter (and sometimes to exit) the North Staff Car Park. The field gates will also have additional restrictions on opening introduced and will generally have to be opened by ID card. 

These outer site gates now provide an additional first line of security and safety for everyone on site and protect against unauthorised visitors putting reception staff and others at risk. It also makes on-site car crime less likely.

Enhanced security arrangements will also be added to reception entry in due course. Staff are reminded of the need to 'tap in' on entry and 'tap out' whenever leaving the site (even temporarily) using the card reader in reception. 

If you arrive at work before reception is open then you MUST take responsibility (set your alarm) to return to reception when it opens so you check your temperature, sign in, re-sanitise etc.

The academy closing times are unchanged for most staff and staff are strongly encouraged to leave site by 5 pm to allow for cleaning.  Please remember to sign out at reception. Reception closes at 5.30 p.m. and the site is normally locked by 6 p.m.

The academy will remain open later to 7.30 p.m. (locked by 8 p.m.) when there is a Remote Parents’ Evening but classrooms used may not be cleaned until the following day to preserve maximum social distancing. Site opening will be extended as Community Sports and Lettings re-open.

When the academy fully re-opens to staff, the staff car park gates will be open (with some supervision) from 7.30a.m.-8.15 a.m. but will require the use of ID entry at all other times. 

 

AVOIDING MIXING ON-SITE

All communication should be electronic (videoconference, teleconference, emails, phone call, WhatsApp group, etc) and not in person.

Collaborative PPA and all other group 'meetings' must be remote via Zoom/AnyDesk or MS Teams / AnyDesk. 

 

TWICE WEEKLY TESTING

LF test equipment for your twice weekly tests should be collected from reception. In return, positive results must be reported to test and trace and all results must be reported via the google form link circulated by Peter Stumpf. 

Used testing equipment (if testing on-site) should be put in the clear plastic bag provided before carrying to reception for disposal in either the yellow clinical waste bin (positive test kits only) or black, non-clinical waste bin (negative test kits only).

A private testing space for testing (for contractors, etc.) has been created adjacent to reception. Colleagues can test themselves in their own areas or at home but must ensure the result is logged properly by reception staff. 

Employees self-testing on-site are required to test as close to their arrival time as possible so that any positive tests are detected and acted upon with little risk of cross-infection. 

 

COVID RELATED REPORTING

All Covid related reports for employees must be emailed to KPR without delay and certainly within 4 hours of happening / commencement.

Employees and workers must email KPR, ideally within 4 hours of an event if:

  1. You have been in contact with someone who has tested positive with Covid or someone in your household has symptoms and hence you need to isolate
  2. You have symptoms and need to isolate / get a PCR test
  3. You have a PCR test appointment (Please provide a copy of the appointment)
  4. You have a PCR test result (please provide a copy of the result)
  5. You become very unwell or are hospitalised
  6. You know of a pupil or their close family who are seriously ill or who have died from Covid-19 related illness
  7. You lose a family member or someone you feel very close to emotionally
  8. You are struggling emotionally or in other ways and are in need of support
  9. You have travelled abroad and are required to quarantine 

Covid related reporting is a professional obligation and not a matter of choice.

If unsure about what needs to be reported, report it to KPR anyway kpr@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk

All employee absence / sickness must be reported to Lena Kapoor and CoverLine daily as normal (regardless of any emails sent to KPR)

COVID-19 Vaccinations Reporting

Please email Poonam Kaher PKA-CC@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk if you have had the Covid vaccination.

Please advise her of two things:

  1. the date(s) of vaccine(s) and
  2. which one (Pfizer or AstraZeneca).

or

  1. You have been offered the vaccine but have decided not to accept the offer at this point in time.

The academy strongly advises uptake of the vaccine when offered.

COVID-19 Shielding Letter Reporting

Please email KPR a copy if you have had the shielding advice letter for the first time or extending to 31 March 2021

Please advise whether a) you intend to work from home or b) intend to return to work on-site at the same time as others.

The academy strongly advises shielding and working from home if you have a letter but this is entirely your choice.

Individual Risk Assessment Requests (Re-opening of Schools)

Please email Peter Stumpf PST-CC@cranford.hounslow.sch.uk  if you would like an Individual Risk Assessment.

The academy reserves the right to require participation in an individual risk assessment.

International Travel ADVANCE Notification of Intentions

If not already done, employees/workers must email KPR with details of any intended international travel plans prior to booking, using vouchers, using points, accepting invitations, agreeing with family, rescheduling postponed travel arrangements or confirming bookings, etc. for Easter 2021, May 2021 half-term, summer 2021. 

KPR may not respond to your email about possible international travel until nearer the time, although he will respond indicatively in some cases, but it is important to advise me of potential international travel at the most embryonic stage of planning.  

Currently, the academy reminds all colleagues that any such arrangements continue to be strongly advised against at this juncture, are not currently allowed, would be entirely at the individual’s own risk, that the academy will not absorb any financial losses (direct or indirect) and there are also professional and employment obligations that would likely be enforced.

Travel Guidance has already been provided to staff and remains in force until further notice. Guidance will be updated and re-issued as necessary following the PM's announcement regarding Step 2 from 12 April 2021 (if data allows) but this is a reminder to colleagues that some things will be deemed as ‘foreseeable’ and quarantine (including the possibility of changes to hotel quarantine requirements) could foreseeably be imposed to more countries even when you are abroad. Hence, in making any international travel plans you would need to have at least 10 days leave remaining to take on return to the UK if necessary and the additional financial resources to unexpectedly pay for hotel quarantine on top of the expected travel costs should that requirement be introduced whilst you are overseas and/or compensate the academy for any losses / additional costs it incurs as a result of non-essential international travel.  

 

TRANSPORT

Public transport is allowed for school staff to get to work but where public transport is used, the academy has a standard risk assessment of common sense precautions which includes advice on how to minimise any risk (e.g. getting off a bus and waiting for the next or walking should a bus become more crowded). 

For the avoidance of doubt, car sharing is not legally permitted except with someone from your household or legitimate ‘bubble’ (and is unlikely to be so at least until 17 May 2021). 

Minicabs, which do not have dividing screens and good ventilation, are also advised against by the academy, unless absolutely necessary and then with precautions such as proper mask wearing by the driver and passenger, windows open (but not only the driver window), etc.

Black taxis may have a Covid safety advantage due to their screens but the same precautions are still necessary, particularly as it is not uncommon for the driver to have their window open, potentially increasing the risk to the passenger if no other windows are open. 

 

NOT ALL ‘POSITIVES’ ARE VISIBLE.  YOU OR OTHERS MAY BE ASYMPTOMATIC.

Colleagues should follow government advice and guidance and, in particular, embrace the concept of acting as though they, and everyone they encounter has the new, highly communicable variant of the virus (which can transmit more easily in shorter time and over greater distance in the right conditions).

 

SPACE AND DISTANCE IS THE MAIN LIFE SAVER

When more pupils and staff return to the site, social distancing is the greatest protection but will not be possible at all times and Covid security will be reliant on the consistent adherence to other mitigating measures (ventilation, mask wearing, hand hygiene, etc.).

Masks will be vital and different masks afford differing levels of protection. In the light of experience of the new UK variant, greater consideration may need to be given to the quality of masks bought and worn.

Please see Ami Kaur or Jenny Moir if your PPE kit is in need of replenishment.  

In addition to the £120 towards home working equipment, all employees have an annual allowance of £15 towards masks of their choice and can obtain free masks from the academy. Better quality and triple layer masks are advised in the light of more transmissible variants. 

 

BREAK TIMES

Colleagues must be careful not to congregate inadvertently in common areas, etc., for example before school, at Break 1, lunch break or at the end of the teaching day. Colleagues, like students, are also encouraged to take these scheduled breaks to undertake light exercise and get fresh air. 

 

WORKING FROM HOME

Those colleagues (shielding and isolating) who are being given the option to work from home must not undertake other activities, including childcare, when they are scheduled to be working.

All employees at home are ‘on call’ and may be called into work, even at very short notice/no notice, at any time within their normal working hours/time, unless they have reported themselves to be sick or in Covid isolation following the normal procedures.

Colleagues working at home must be contactable throughout their working hours by phone and email. Employees are responsible for ensuring that their personnel record, including their contact details, on Integris is always complete and up to date.

To remain contactable at home (a prerequisite of being allowed to work from home), the employee must ensure, for example, that their phone is charged, has the sound switched on, etc.

Working from home options will be rescinded, for individuals or all, without notice if they are not meeting the needs of the academy when being employed to do so. This may happen without notice.

 

STAFF CONNECTIVITY

The academy has purchased 100 concurrent use licences for ‘Any Desk’ which will allow staff to connect to the academy network from home as though they were working on their computers on site.

As these licences are shared, colleagues are asked to connect for a specific purpose and then remember to disconnect afterwards rather than leave the connection open. This is also for data security reasons. 

Colleagues are asked to work with the Colwyn Technologies Team ‘helpdesk’ to overcome the initial technical / installation issues, should they have them.

Continue to email helpdesk if you need support, indicating how best to contact you if you are working at home.

'AnyDesk' is designed for desktop to desktop connections primarily. If your home device is portable and you are having difficulty setting up AnyDesk, you may be asked to bring it onto site at an agreed appointment time but normally Colwyn staff will be able to log in remotely to help.

Remote access to the academy network will improve the safety of everyone, especially those who are required to work on-site and will aid better learning for our children so will remain a priority. However, it potentially puts data security at slightly higher risk so staff using AnyDesk must not leave open connections, particularly not leaving Sims and AnyDesk open and unattended together. Adam, Ali and Johnson are available on-site daily and there is external support from other Colwyn technicians and engineers. 

 

WORKING FROM HOME SUPPORT

Colleagues who work from home may borrow furniture, equipment, stationery necessary to safely and comfortably undertake their job from home. Furniture and equipment to be borrowed from the academy will need to be agreed with Ami Kaur / Jenny Moir and the asset register updated with the Finance Team accordingly. If this will be needed back in school from 8 March 2021 then it should be brought back on Friday 5 March 2021 AND Ami Kaur / Jenny Moir must be informed and the asset register updated with the Finance Team accordingly.

Colleagues may reclaim (with VAT receipts) against their £120 maximum allowance for furniture, equipment or materials where needed for safe and comfortable home working. Please note that this is in addition to the £15 annual allowance for masks (not other PPE). VAT receipts for either will need to be scanned to the Carrie Bendix's email.

If these adjustments are insufficient to support safe, comfortable and professionally suitable home working, the colleague must work from the academy instead.

 

13. COVID-19 VARIANTS

  • Mutations of any virus are inevitable and perfectly normal and expected. New variants have competitive advantages over the strains they are replacing. These advantages do not always mean that the new strain is more dangerous to humans 
  • Although there will have been many more variants in a range of countries around the world, 4 variants of geographical first detection in a particular country are being reported on in the media at the moment (Of these, China was the first detected form of the virus then the UK and more recently South Africa and Brazil). The last three have been in the news having been identified as spreading more quickly and replacing the weaker China variant of Coronavirus
  • The U.K., South Africa and Brazil variants are all thought to be much more contagious than the earlier China coronavirus due to changes to their spike protein - this is the part of the virus that attaches to human cells. They have a key mutation called E484K that may evade parts of the immune system called antibodies
  • More variants will emerge as it is entirely normal for viruses to mutate and for the best mutations to become dominant 
  • UK infections now mainly involve the newer, more prevalent and more transmissive variant of coronavirus (B.1.1.7), which is commonly known as the 'UK Variant' having first been detected in Kent
  • The U.K. Variant has spread to and/or mutated in more than 50 other countries and may be between 50-70% more transmissible than its China predecessor
  • More recently, there has been a further variant detected in the U.K., a mutation that was first seen in South Africa, (Coronavirus B.1.351)
  • At least 11 of the 145 cases identified to 7 February 2021 have no connection to travel to or from South Africa so that these have likely been passed via community transmission or possibly the mutation has now occurred in the U.K. even though the variant would still be commonly known as the 'South Africa Variant' because that is where strain B.1.351 was first detected)
  • The South Africa variant has been detected in at least 20 other countries, not just South Africa
  • Tougher restrictions on travel to/from South Africa, Brazil, Portugal and other countries with cases of this more recent mutation are also subject to enhanced restrictions to prevent transmission by people with the variant
  • The nearest outbreak of these so-called 'South Africa variant' is in Hanwell (London W7)
  • Nearby Ealing Council held a Public Meeting for residents and workers in W7 and W13, CLICK HERE TO WATCH
  • Each local council website of any B.1.351 (SA) infected / surge testing area is the best place to look for information and guidance
  • It is too soon to know how transmissible or virulent this strain might be, but it is highly likely that the current vaccines will still work effectively with it, even if the efficacy is less than for other strains 
  • By far, the most prevalent strain locally, however, remains the so-called U.K. variant
  • The Secretary of State for Health has stated that scientists have strong evidence and high confidence that the so called 'UK variant' is much more transmissible than the original Covid-19 (China) strain. This means that the current UK variant is proven to spread much more easily than the variant we experienced until November/December 2020
  • It is much easier to catch the new UK variant, by chance encounters on buses, in supermarkets, when going in and out of buildings, in offices, etc., than it was with the old variant 
  • When the new virus enters the home, it is now more likely to spread to others so the whole household typically becomes infected unless very rigorous precautions are taken (however, the social distancing required and other precautions are not always possible in many households so preventing anyone from catching the virus in the first place is the only true safeguard - keep a large social distance from others at all times and do not mix households)
  • Unlike the old virus, the new UK variant of the coronavirus-19 appears to infect people of all ages equally
  • Younger people (certainly secondary aged children) are now just as likely to acquire the virus, have symptoms and spread it
  • Younger people who are hospitalised also spend longer in hospital and hence put extra pressure on the NHS when they become unwell
  • The PM clarified that 'The new U.K. variant is associated with a higher degree of mortality'. Scientists are currently debating the degree to which it is more deadly
  • It appears, from initial data that it is causing more serious illness and more deaths out of hospital, but the death rate in hospital is unchanged
  • The improved treatments appear to be effective in preventing a rise in deaths in hospital
  • This may mean that where a person becomes more seriously ill, they should not hesitate in seeking urgent medical care and must not be reluctant to call 999 or go to hospital where needed

 

 

ANNEX 1: COVID LETTERS FROM THE EXECUTIVE HEAD TEACHER, MR PRUNTY

LETTER 1: 20 MARCH 2020

LETTER 2: 1 JUNE 2020

LETTER 3: 30 JUNE 2020

LETTER 4: 28 AUGUST 2020

LETTER 4A: 9 SEPTEMBER 2020 

LETTER 5: 21 DECEMBER 2020

LETTER 6: 8 FEBRUARY 2021 (To be added)

ANNEX 2: HEALTH & TRAVEL DECLARATION FORM (TO BE UPDATED)

ANNEX 3: OFQUAL CONSULTATION ON PUBLIC EXAM ARRANGEMENTS SUMMER 2021 

Staff, Parents, students and others can read below the academy's response to the 2 consultation documents above.

We believe that it is shocking and immoral for the examination boards to be raising their prices for this summer's exams. 

Ofqual's decisions following the consultation are now known and the academy's arrangements are set out here:

SUMMARY OVERVIEW

GCSE AND A LEVEL 

VOCATIONAL AND TECHNICAL

 

Dear colleague

Following on from my email yesterday, our teams have now digested the summer 2021 decisions for GCSE, AS and A-levels, and Vocational, Technical and other qualifications (VTQs)

It’s been confirmed that students will receive grades determined by schools and colleges; students will only be assessed on what they’ve been taught and no algorithm will be used.

Here’s some clarity on how grades will be awarded this summer. We want to make this as easy as we can for you and your colleagues, so I also want tell you how we’ll be helping you navigate this summer’s approach to assessment.

GCSEs, AS and A-levels

Assessment and evidence

  • Teachers need to assess their students’ performance - based only on what has been taught - to determine the grade each student should receive.
  • Teachers can use evidence of a student’s performance from throughout the course to inform their judgement.
  • Schools and colleges should use a broad range of evidence for each student, for each subject studied, to determine their individual grades before submitting them to us.
  • Teachers should determine the grades as late in the academic year as possible, and not confined to a defined window, to enable teaching to continue for as long as possible. The deadline for submitting grades will be 18 June 2021.
  • Heads of centres will have to confirm that students have been taught sufficient content to allow progression to the next stage of their education in the subjects to be studied. Without this declaration it won’t be possible to award a grade. They’ll also need to declare that the requirements for internal quality assurance have been met.
  • Students should continue to work on their non-exam assessment (NEA), including for Project qualifications. NEA will be marked by teachers and will contribute to the overall grade, whether or not it’s been completed. We won’t need to moderate it.
  • Private candidates will be able to work with a school or college to receive a grade this year alongside their own students. We’ll give you clear guidance on the evidence you can use to assess a private candidate.

Support materials from AQA

  • We’ll provide schools and colleges with a support package of materials including questions and their mark schemes, grouped by topic, data about how students typically performed in individual questions and example materials to illustrate different performance levels. We’ll also advise teachers about content coverage, topic selection, marking and making grading judgements. Materials will be based on past questions and will also include a proportion of previously unpublished questions for every subject. 
  • Teachers will be able to use the support materials as soon as we’ve published them and until the deadline for the submission of grades. Our aim is to publish these by the end of March.
  • Using our support materials isn’t compulsory; they’ll just form part of the range of evidence teachers could use to determine the grade.

Quality assurance

  • We’ll work really closely with the other exam boards to make sure that requirements for internal quality assurance and arrangements for external quality assurance are consistent.
  • Your school or college’s internal quality assurance arrangements will need to include consideration of your school or college’s profile of results in previous years as a guide to help you check that your judgements aren’t unduly harsh or lenient. 
  • It’s really important that you document the process you follow that ensures the judgements being made are fair, consistent, evidence based, and minimise the risk of bias and discrimination.  As well as good practice, this documentation will also be required as part of the external quality assurance we’ll need to undertake this year. 

Results days, post-results and appeals

  • The Government has decided that results days will be on 10 August 2021 for AS and A-level, and 12 August 2021 for GCSE results. 
  • Students will be able to appeal their grade.
    • A student who is unhappy with their grade should first ask their school or college to check whether there’s been an administrative or procedural error. 
    • If your school or college does find an error in the grade submitted to us, you can submit a revised grade and a rationale for us to consider. If we’re satisfied with the rationale, we’ll issue a revised grade.
    • If your school or college doesn’t believe an error had been made, a student can then ask you submit an appeal to us on their behalf. This will include the evidence on which the judgement had been made; we’ll then consider whether, in our view, the grade reflected a reasonable and appropriate exercise of academic judgement. If we feel it didn’t, we’ll determine the grade that the evidence would support. We’ll also make sure that your school or college followed its own process.

Vocational, Technical and other qualifications

We’ve been working hard with the DfE, Ofqual and all other exam boards to make sure the decisions for Vocational, Technical and other qualifications are as fair as possible, but one size doesn’t fit all for these qualifications. It’s also important to remember that context is different to last year and so the approach for this year needs to reflect that. 

As always our principles for our Vocational, Technical and other non-general qualifications are to align with GCSEs, AS and A-levels where possible and, for the majority of the decisions, they do. This includes our project qualifications – including the Extended Project Qualification. 

Here are a few things we want to point out so you’re clear on what it means:

Which subjects are included?

Some VTQs are out of scope of alternative arrangements this summer which means that there will still need to be assessments for these qualifications. In the case of Functional Skills Qualifications, it’s been confirmed that exams and assessments should continue in line with public health measures, but with alternative arrangements available for those who can’t access the assessments in exceptional circumstances. This is because the DfE and Ofqual feel it’s necessary for students to demonstrate their skills for these qualifications. We’re working closely with Ofqual to confirm our plans for these qualifications and we’ll be back in touch as soon as we know more.  

All other AQA non-general qualifications are in scope of alternative arrangements, which means grades will be determined by teachers, just like GCSEs, AS and A-levels.

Assessment and evidence

Teachers for VTQs and non-general qualifications will also be assessing student performance, using a range of evidence available to them to determine the grade each student should achieve. The evidence used may vary from GCSEs and A-levels, and it will also include banked evidence for VTQs.

Students should continue to work on their NEA and internal assessments, which will be marked by teachers. Just as with GCSEs, AS and A-levels, it will contribute to the overall grade, whether or not it’s been completed. We won’t need to moderate it, or for Tech-level units, complete EQA verification before teachers submit the grades. Quality assurance for VTQs will be the same as it will be for GCSEs, AS and A-levels.

Results days

Our Level 3 vocational qualifications (Applied General and Tech Levels) will have the same results days as AS and A-levels on 10 August 2021. For Level 2 learners, results day will be the same as for GCSEs on 12 August 2021.

Support materials for VTQs 

VTQs and non-general qualifications will also receive a support package of materials. These may vary in content from the package for GCSEs, AS and A-levels as in some cases, past papers and topic selection may not be applicable or relevant.

There are further technical and regulatory consultations Ofqual is running on General Qualifications and Vocational, Technical and Other Qualifications, which we’re responding to. We’ll be back in touch when the decisions are published to update you on what they mean for you. 

We’re here to support you this summer  

We want to make sure you’re confident in the grades you’re delivering this summer; that they’re a fair and consistent reflection of your students’ knowledge and performance.

Our teams of assessment experts are here to help and support you through the process, not only with the support and resources we’ve outlined above, but also to answer your questions and to give you the opportunity to share your thoughts and experience with other teachers. We’ll stay in touch to help you keep on track with what you need to do this summer.

I hope this information will answer some of your questions – but I appreciate that you may still have some. I promise we’re working hard with UK regulators and Government to get all the answers, so please bear with us.

Working together over the next few months we’ll make sure that your students receive the qualifications they need to progress to the next stage of their lives. In the meantime, you can keep up-to-date with our latest news and information on our  2021 exam changes webpage.

Kind regards

Mark Bedlow
Chief Operating Officer

Operational Guide

End.

The roadmap to COVID-19 recovery

LBH COVID Roadmap steps 1 + 2

 

 

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