This week I emailed the LECA team and said that the next two weeks would probably be the hardest two weeks of the pandemic. We have navigated closure, home learning, students in school and testing and I am firmly of the opinion that we have done our very best under extremely difficult and unprecedented circumstances. This week is another huge challenge. Re-opening with mass testing; remote and face-to-face teaching; shielding staff teaching live lessons from home and being beamed into classrooms. This is unchartered territory. We are creating the map as we go and every day that passes will be a milestone on an incredible journey.
The destination of this journey is freedom. On March 4th, no-one tested positive for COVID-19 in East Cambridgeshire. The day before that, 6 people had. The vaccination and the lockdown is beating the virus, of that there is no doubt. What we also know, however, is that COVID-19 is highly transmissable and if we are to win this war we need to continue to be cautious and continue to be vigilant. Tomorrow there will still be year group bubbles, sanitiser at the entrances and, following new guidance, face-coverings will be required to be worn at all times while indoors. Few people enjoy wearing face-coverings of course but they have become part of our everyday life and we expect our students to show they care for each other and the adults at LECA by wearing them. If you are a parent reading this, I urge you to remind your child why we wear face-coverings and to ensure they have a clean one with them everyday.
Once three coronavirus tests have been completed in school, students will then be given tests to complete at home. Of course, guidance will be sent home to parents so they can help their children but it is a very simple process and the students should be well-versed by the time they have to do it themselves. As always we are here to support you as much as possible.
When the country opens up again we will be well into the summer term and planning ahead for next year. We may even be able to host a Open Evening for Year 5 and some transition days for Year 6. It's a long time since we welcomed parents into the building and we really can't wait to open our doors again, but we will have to wait for the Government 'green light' before that can happen. As soon as we have that green light, we will start to calendar our events as we did before and begin 'normal' operations and events. Near the top of my personal list will be Tea and Tours, my open invite for parents to join me for a cup of tea and tour around the building during the school day. I looked forward to these each week and it was always a pleasure to talk to parents about the school and to show them the students engaged and enjoying their learning. Again, this will be guided by the rules but we will begin them again as soon as possible.
Lastly for this week a massive thank you to my team who have worked so hard this term and are now embarking on a one last tough leg of this journey. Thank you also to our parents who have, once again, stepped up to support our students at home and keep them on track. Now it is back to us to get the students into productive routines and fully engaged in school life once again. We're ready and we hope they are too.