Re-opening information for parents

Wednesday 5th August 2020

On Thursday 31 July, the First Minister, Ms Nicola Sturgeon, updated parliament on the reopening of schools in August.   She confirmed that schools across the country are expected to return from Tuesday 11th August.  Our students will return from Wednesday 12th August and specific information about the phased return is included below

Additional guidance to support the safe return to school was also published on the Scottish Government website.  School staff at Penicuik High School are reviewing this guidance to ensure our plans are compliant with this latest Health and Safety guidance

Key messages outlined by the First Minister, with an additional explanation from the school included in italics.

One of the key issues that will be highlighted in further guidance on re-opening that will come out prior to the 12 August is that the responsibility for the safety of others in our school community is the responsibility of all members – staff, students, and parents. We will be very clear in our expectations and will take clear and swift actions where any behaviours result in a risk to the health and safety of others.

The Scottish Government guidance can be accessed via the link below

https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-preparing-start-new-school-term-august-2020/

What is our Phased Re-opening Plan?

The following phased return of students has been discussed and agreed by SMT. The phased return allows us to ensure that we can induct and orientate students who have been absent from school for five months. Many of our young people will feel anxious and uncertain about what to expect and what the rules will mean for them as individuals. In particular, we are prioritising the new S1 students who missed out on being in school as part of their transition and those in the Senior Phase S4-6. We will as part of the re-phasing also need to assist young people with re-coursing. I also note that staff will need to direct working time to preparing materials for SQA appeals.

Information was sent out yesterday – 4 August with regard to SQA Results, the appeals process and re-coursing and this will also be available via the website.

The information given here includes the dates/days different year levels should attend next week as well as a reminder about the period timing for our new timetable structure. We are still considering the need for staggering starting times slightly for S1-3 and Senior phase students when we are fully open on the 17 August and will inform you next week of any change to the School period times below. It is likely it will only be a change to attending morning Registration for part of the school cohort.

School will open and close as per the normal timetable shown below during the phased return next week. School transport will run at the normal times. Further information about school transport will be included in our next communication.

Day / Date Year levels to attend on that date Other activities
Wednesday 12 August All new S1 students

All incoming S5/6 students only

Re-coursing appointments

Re-connect – vulnerable students

Thursday 13 August All new S1 students

All incoming S4 students only

Re-coursing appointments S5/6

Re-connect – vulnerable students

Friday 14 August All new S1 students

All incoming S2/3 students only

Re-connect – vulnerable students Re-coursing appointments S5/6
Monday 17 August All students  to attend- fully open Re-coursing appointments (including S4 and S2 issues)

 

 

Phased Return Details – Re-Connect Programme 2020

Only S1 students will be in each day. The re-coursing discussions will run across the three days Wednesday 12 August until Friday 14 August and into the next week. We will also be picking up vulnerable students for one-to-one support.

The S1 Re-connect programme will work on orientating students to their new school and fully explaining the health and safety rules and processes in place to protect them and others. There will also be a focus on health and well-being taking a nurture approach and building resilience to cope with the new normal in school.  If S1 parents/carers have any concerns about their child they should contact the school who will direct their query to the most appropriate staff member. S1 students will also start to experience normal subject classes as we move to full opening on 17 August.

Other year groups will be given full safety briefings before they start moving into subject classes. At S2 there will also be a focus on health and well-being.

Reminder -School Timetable from August 2020

32 teaching periods per week plus 10 minute registration period each day

7 Periods:  Monday – Thursday

4 periods: Friday

Period timings – 50 minutes

Monday – Thursday
Registration 8.30 – 8.40 am
Period 1 8.40 – 9.30 am
Period 2 9.30 – 10.20 am
Period 3 10.20 – 11.10 am
Interval 11.10 – 11.25 am
Period 4 11.25 – 12.15 pm
Period 5 12.15 – 1.05 pm
Lunch 1.05 – 1.50 pm
Period 6 1.50 – 2.40pm
Period 7 2.40 – 3.30 pm

Registration 10 minutes

Friday
Registration 8.30 – 8.40 am
Period 1 8.40 – 9.30 am
Period 2 9.30 – 10.20 am
Interval 10.20 – 10.35 am
Period 3 10.35 – 11.25 pm
Period 4 11.25 – 12.15 pm
School closes

 

Uniform

As indicated in earlier communications we have taken the decision to suspend official uniform until after the October break. This will allow you to cope more easily with the need to change clothes each day, and it gives parent/ carers time to purchase new uniform items. If students wish to wear uniform they may do so.

If any parent/ carer is experiencing financial hardship, I would encourage you to contact the school in confidence so we can support you. There is a Council Clothing grant and your child may also be eligible to have a free school meal. Other support may also be available through the schools hardship fund.

Lunch

Students must bring their own packed lunch to school each day including those eligible for free school meals until further notice. S1 students must stay in school. We are encouraging all students to stay in school during lunchtime. If students choose to leave school to buy lunch they will be expected to wear face masks in shops and MUST not congregate in large groups. The school will be checking on this and Police will also be monitoring the behaviour of young people. Local shopkeepers are also aware of this risk.

Health and Safety

Further information in relation to our local school Risk Assessment and health and safety protocols will be shared with parents / carers but key points to note are:

Please Note: Any arrangements noted here or in later communication may need to be reviewed and revised based on current national or local advice. Where any sudden changes are made we will communicate with you urgently via; Group call, the School website, Twitter and via the Parent Association Facebook page.

 

Craig Biddick

Head Teacher (Acting)

 

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