Posted: Sat 20th Jun 2020

What one Flintshire secondary school will look like when pupils return in two weeks

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Saturday, Jun 20th, 2020

A Flintshire secondary school has revealed how it has adapted to meet social distancing guidelines ahead of reopening on June 29.

Schools across Wales are gearing up for the restart in less than a fortnight’s time which will allow pupils to ‘check in, catch up, and prepare for September’.

Schools won’t be returning to anything like they were prior to lockdown, reopening at the end of June will give pupils the opportunity to experience the ‘new normal’ ahead of next term.  

Social distance measures have been employed in classrooms where only 8 pupils will be permitted at any one time

Flintshire Council has said: “Each school is different and arrangements will be in place to suit each individual school setting.

We do know that there will be much smaller classes, providing secure dedicated time with teachers and classmates.

This time will include online and personalised classroom experience and getting children and teachers ready for a similar experience in September.”

Hawarden High School has made a number of key changes to its infrastructure for the safety of learners and staff.

Pupils will be required to socially distance, keeping two metres from one another and their teachers.

Hawarden High School – Corridor showing the new one-way system with social distancing markers on the floor

At Hawarden there will only be around a third of the school’s 1100 pupils in at any one time.

Learners will arrive and leave at staggered times to reduce contact with other students and teachers.

There will be a maximum of around 8 pupils in a classroom at any one time, they will stay in the room for a session which will last around three hours.

Hawarden High School has said pupils will have a maximum of three sessions in school over the four week period between reopening and summer closedown.

Photographs shared by headteacher Simon Budgen show the new social distancing measure and one way systems implemented in the school corridors and entrance.

The images also show new outdoor handwashing facilities and classroom layouts with a reduced number of desks. 

New outdoor handwashing facilities have been installed at the school

At Connah’s Quay High School pupils will be offered a three-hour block, between 9am and 12pm, once a week, to go into school.

Learners will be allocated to a small group of ten or twelve, according to their year group.

They will stay within these groups only, throughout their time in school.

In a letter to parents, the school has outlined how pupils will be allocated to a designated PODS with a small group of learners from their year group.

They will not be able to access any other area across the school.

The letter says: “Each POD “will have a designated entrance and exit, designated toilets and classrooms, and learners and staff across each POD will not be allowed to mix at all.

Every POD will be thoroughly cleaned throughout the day and a deep clean will take place each afternoon, once all learners have left the building.

Every POD will also have several sanitisation stations, including at entry and exit to the POD.

We will use a small number of classrooms, which have been carefully planned to ensure social distancing can take place.

Learners will be with one teacher throughout their time in classrooms and year groups will not be able to
mix at all.”

Flintshire Council has said schools across the county have worked “very creatively” during the lockdown period to maintain pupil engagement in learning through a “variety” of means.

It’s “clear that they will have to operate in a very different way for the foreseeable future, providing a combination of face to face and remote learning – a blended learning approach.

Planning is in the early stages “but we appreciate that parents and carers and, indeed, pupils and school staff, will have concerns and questions.

That’s why we want to keep you informed as decisions are made so that we hope that you will feel reassured and confident in the steps we are taking. 

The safety and wellbeing of our staff and learners is of paramount importance in all our planning.” A council said spokesperson said. 

Flintshire Council answers key questions and parent concerns on the reopening of schools later this month

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