Newsletter 3rd Nov 2020

Weekly Newsletter – 3 November 2020

Dear Parents and Carers

As always I have tried to keep the weekly newsletter as brief as possible.

I hope that you were able to enjoy some time together over the half term break and that the children are all keeping well and ready for an important half term in the run up to Christmas. Whilst there is much uncertainty about plans for Christmas and the national lockdown, please be assured that we will be trying to keep things as ‘normal’ as we can so that the children can continue to enjoy school, enjoy their learning and enjoy being with their friends!

Today’s updates include a reminder from Public Health England about safety measures and an important update on home learning and what parents can expect.

Home learning

I am pleased to report that all classes who have experienced ‘home learning’ after a positive case have done incredibly well. Teachers have been pleased with how the home learning has gone and we have received some terrific feedback from lots of parents. A huge thank you to all parents who have supported us with the home learning so far! Balancing working at home and family life with supervising access to live Zoom lessons and checking follow up work cannot have been easy so well done everyone!

We have learnt from our experiences so far and are adapting our approach to home learning slightly so that we are all ready and fully prepared. Please read the instructions below carefully:

In readiness for the closure of a ‘class bubble’ (two weeks self-isolation) from today:

  • A new ‘home learning pack’ will be sent out with every child today. This will include exercise books for English and maths, a pencil, a whiteboard and whiteboard pen (this may be sent later in some classes), worksheets, reading material and other information. (THESE MATERIALS MUST NOT BE USED IN ADVANCE OF THE HOME LEARNING! This would impact on what the teachers have planned and prepared.);
  • Each class webpage will be updated to include the key learning and resources for each day during the home learning period (This can be accessed online and will not usually need to be printed out.);
  • Teaching staff will maintain regular contact with all pupils and families not in school for any reason to check on the home learning and wellbeing;
  • Any individual pupil self-isolating and not able to attend school will be supported personally by their child’s classteacher and provided with the work that is being covered in school.
    School photos
    Please remember that school photographs are being taken on Thursday this week. Unfortunately, it is not going to be possible to accommodate family group photos this year as this will compromise the class bubbles. Apologies for any disappointment.
    After-school clubs
    Apologies for any inconvenience caused but due to updated guidance relating to the national lockdown, there will be no after-school clubs for the rest of this term. Hopefully, we can start these again in the new year. Link Club will continue as normal.
    As always, to support the British Legion Poppy Appeal and our country’s Remembrance celebrations, we are selling poppies and poppy materials (wrist bands (suggested donation £1), snap bands (£1.50), reflectors (50p) and zip pulls (50p). These will be available in school until 11 November. All monies donated will be sent to the Poppy Appeal.
    Message from Cheshire West Public Health:
    Thank you to all our staff, pupils and parents and carers who have been following the safety measures we’ve put in place to help reduce the transmission of COVID-19. At the end of September, the Director of Public Health for Cheshire West and Chester Council introduced some additional measures for schools to follow to help reduce COVID-19 transmission rates in our community. We know that the virus is easily transmitted from person to person so it’s important that everyone continues to play their part and follows these measures to help keep our community, friends, family and neighbours safe.
    The measures included:
  • All adults to wear a face covering when visiting or entering the school premises including outdoor playground areas. 
  • Parents/carers to arrive and leave promptly when dropping off/collecting their child – please do not congregate and maintain social distancing.
  • In schools where it has been agreed that a parent/carer can enter the school premises for drop-off and pick-up, only one adult should enter. 
  • All staff to wear face coverings when they come out of the building onto the playground during drop-off and pick-up times. 
  • Young people to avoid congregating outside school and mixing with other schools and should go directly home. 

As we’re now in COVID alert level high you can no longer socialise indoors with anyone who doesn’t live within your household. This means that outside of school, pupils from class or year group bubbles cannot mix indoors either. The Council has received reports of some young people congregating in some communities after school has finished. It’s important that we all play our part to turn this around. Please ensure that your child is aware of the measures set out and why it’s so important that they follow them.

To help us minimise the risk at Hillside, all staff are continuing to wear face coverings outside of classrooms when moving around communal areas where social distancing is difficult to maintain, such as in corridors.

Waiting for test results and self-isolating

Please remember that, if you or your child have been in contact with someone who has symptoms and is waiting for a test result, you should be self-isolating until a negative test is confirmed and your child should not be in school.

School meals

Please remember that there is a slight amendment to the lunch menu which starts this week. The updated menu is on the website. Don’t forget the ‘Bonfire Lunch’ on Thursday!

Kind regards

Craig Richardson



Contact the School

Helsby Hillside Primary School

Bates Lane
Helsby, Frodsham
Cheshire, WA6 9LN

Headteacher: Mr C Richardson
School Contacts: Mrs Julie Ellis
& Mrs S Tregilgas

Tel: 01928 722991