Update for the return to school in September 2020

Over the next 5 weeks or so guidance in many areas from both the Welsh Government and CCBC will be issued. As a result of this it is not possible to present a reopening plan at the moment as there are still too many unknowns for a meaningful plan to be able to be put in place. It is also clear that the situation and the required responses are changing, at times daily, and we are not able to accurately state what the situation will be six weeks from now. We are currently expecting updates through August in areas such as shielding, transport, PE, ‘Test, Track and Trace’ as well as the longer term plans for Catering alongside further supporting guidance from Caerphilly and the Welsh Government.

The Welsh Government requirement is that all children will be back in full time education from September 14th 2020.

We are aiming to publish our reopening plan after we receive the last piece of key guidance and therefore expect the plan to be published towards the end of August.

The first two days of term (Tuesday 1st and Wednesday 2nd September) are designated ‘Planning and Preparation’ days and we have been directed by Caerphilly to use those days to finalise our response to the reopening in the light of the most recent guidance and any changes to the wider COVID-19 situation. We will also need to carry out new full site and staff risk assessments and action any subsequent adjustments on those days as this will mean that they are as relevant as possible to the situation at that time.

At the moment our plan is that –

  • Year 3 and Year 6 will start school on Thursday 3rd and Friday 4th of September. This gives us the opportunity to support the Year 3s with transition as all the normal activities were not possible due to the pandemic and also to focus on the Year 6 children who will be starting a very important year in their education after unprecedented disruption.
  • Year 3 children will enter the school site via the main gate on Celtic Way at the back of the school and will be guided to a designated area on the yard.
  • Year 6 children will enter the school site via the front gate on Church Street and go to the yard via the side gate next to the reception area where they will be guided to their designated areas.
  • Years 4 and 5 will start school on Monday September 7th meaning that all year groups will be attending school from that point.

There will be staff on hand to help.

The timings for school start and end times will be confirmed in the reopening plan but will hopefully be as close as possible to the timings of a normal school day.

The arrival and pick up plans will be detailed in the reopening plan as aspects such as the staggering of start and finish times and points of access and exit from the site will need to be confirmed.

A letter from Caerphilly detailing further aspects of the return to school will be shared once we receive it.

It must be emphasised that all of these plans are provisional and could change completely before the return to school.

Thank you for working with us and helping to make our return to school for the last three weeks so successful. It has been lovely seeing the children again; we have really appreciated the chance to catch up and are looking forward to our return in September.  It is still extremely frustrating to be unable to plan in more detail but that is the nature of the situation and we will keep you as up to date as we are able.

Our Wild Lives

Each week on the Our Wild Lives website we will publish a Discovery Card with a simple, thoughtful and free idea for getting out and about and engaging with nature.  There is no charge for taking part as we have been lucky enough to secure funding from the National Lottery. We just want everyone who uses the ideas to send in a photo or comment, so that together we can create a unique digital scrapbook which captures our re-found appreciation of the natural world as we all learn to live with the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

The project is for everyone – young and old, urban and rural – and we are really keen to spread the word and get as many people as possible involved.

The project will launch for the summer holidays from 17th July, but you can see a draft of the website here, to give you a feel https://www.ourwildlives.club/

Andy Wilkinson
Uwch Barcmon Addysg Amgylcheddol | Senior Environmental Education Ranger

Families Magazine

Dear Parent/Carer,

We’re pleased to be able to send you the latest Families magazine which is a summer holiday issue.
It is full of resources and ideas to help you keep your children entertained, busy and productive during the long break including fun learning ideas, sourcing books, learning to draw, safe socialising and screen free activities.

You can read the magazine here.
We hope you enjoy it.

Rebecca Lewis
Managing Editor
Families Cardiff & Vale

Reports and Classes

End of year reports will be sent out with the children when they attend school this week. For those children not attending they will be delivered before the end of the week. The Welsh Government has removed the standard requirements for reporting as a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. We have given a brief overview of the children’s school experience before the school closures as well as recognising engagement with home-learning during lockdown.  We had planned that our reports would  follow a new format this year in preparation for the new ‘Curriculum for Wales’; we have continued with that plan, therefore the reports will look considerably different to previous years. These reports reference the ‘areas of learning experience’ as detailed in the new curriculum and we have moved the focus to the child-centred commentary you will find in the first section of the report.

Children in Years 3 and 4 will be told their classes for next year when they attend school this week. Year 5 children were told their classes when they attended last Wednesday.

Parental Survey

The staff at Bedwas Junior and Rhydri Primary Schools would like to thank parents and carers for all of the hard work, commitment and effort that they made to keep their child/ children engaged in learning throughout the recent school closure. The resilience and motivation of many of our families has been outstanding, and we are very proud of what has been achieved.

Thank you to those who completed our parental survey. We are currently collating and analysing the results and working hard behind the scenes to ensure that they inform and improve our future practice. In the event of further school closures, we will be able to use this feedback to enhance the provision and support that we can provide so that it suits the needs and preferences of our families.

Mrs S Banks

School Update

Dear Parents / Carers

Following today’s announcement from Kirsty Williams about the return to school in September, we are now waiting for the Welsh Government guidance which will enable us to start our planning. This guidance is expected early next week. Once this is received we will be working closely with CCBC and other schools in order to prepare our return to school plans. These will be shared with you as soon as they are ready however, many things about our current situation could change before September requiring significant adjustments. If this is the case these adjustments will be communicated with you via the school blog.

Mr R Cook

Feedback request – Home learning

With plans for September 2020 and the foreseeable future uncertain at the moment, we are keen to hear your feedback on your experiences with home-learning during the recent school closure. We would be very grateful if you could take 2 minutes to complete this survey to help us ensure we continue to support you and the children to the best of our ability. The survey will remain live until midday Wednesday 8th July.





Message from Mr Cook

Dear Parents / Carers

It has been great having the children back in school and I would like to thank all the pupils, parents and staff for helping our first week back go so smoothly.

We will follow the same timetable and cohort allocations for the remaining two weeks up to the end of term (Friday 17th July).

As soon as we are given any guidance on what is going to happen in September we will work on our response and share this with you as soon as we can. At the moment we know nothing for certain.

Keep safe

Mr R Cook

PDG Access Grant – Message from CCBC

Applications for September 2020 will NOT be received by our Schools but will be received and administered by the Local Authority.  Due to the current circumstances a new on-line application process has been developed for 2020. It is anticipated that the on-line application will be available for families to access from Monday 27th July 2020. Support will also be provided by the Local Authority where families do not have on-line access to apply. Details and updates will be available on the Caerphilly website. To reassure families applications and payments will be on-going through the summer holiday period, into September and onwards.
PDG Access Update Note – Schools 02.07.2020

Year 6 leavers hoodies

Dear year 6 parents

Unfortunately, due to the current restraints, the PTA are unable to go ahead with this year’s prom for the year 6 leavers.  However, they would like to present all year 6s with a ‘Class of 2020’ hoodie and there will be no charge to parents.  These are grey cotton hoodies and will be printed by TSS Print and Embroidery of Bartlett Street, Caerphilly whose website is https://www.tssprintandembroidery.com/  – please contact TSS directly if you require sight of their privacy policy.

The hoodies will include the names of all year 6 children on the rear and there is also an option to have a Christian name, nickname or initials printed on the front left-hand corner.

If you would like your child to have a leaver’s hoodie, please kindly complete the form below to give consent to your child’s name being included on the rear.  Due to data protection regulations, if no consent is given, then your child’s name will not appear on the hoodies and they will not be presented with this leaving gift.

As no samples can be provided this year for the children to try for size, the chest sizes of the hoodies are included below.  Please indicate which size you require and return the form no later than Monday 29th June to Ms Storey’s email – StoreyK2@Hwbmail.net

Many thanks

PTA Committee

Order Form

Transition questions answered

Today, Bedwas High School have placed a video on the front page of their website: https://www.bedwashigh.org/

In the video, Mr Diehl and Mr Williams answer the questions year 6 have asked about moving up to year 7 in September. The video is called transition questions answered.

We hope this answers your questions about moving up to year 7 and any possible transition links beforehand.