Reopening Nursery to some children from 1st June

Dear Parent/Carer,

I am writing to let you know that from the 1st of June 2020 we are planning to reopen Lilycroft and St Edmund’s Nursery Schools for some children. We will only be able to do this provided that government guidelines allow us, that we consider it safe and that the rate of Covid-19 infection continues to decrease. 

Obviously, the health and safety of your children and our staff is our main priority and we will be putting into place lots of carefully planned measures to ensure everyone is as safe as possible. For example:

•    Nobody with symptoms will be permitted to come to Nursery
•    Testing will be available for staff or children who develop symptoms and also for people in their households.
•    Children will learn and play in much smaller groups (3-4s 12, 0-3s 6) with 2 members of staff per group. These groups will not change and they will not mix at all within nursery. Social distancing is not possible for children under 5 so restricting the number of other people we come into contact with is an important way to reduce risk.
•    Numbers of children will be limited and priority will be given to vulnerable families, children of key workers, children of other parents who need to go back to work and older children who will be going to school in September – in that order.
•    Drop off and pick up times will be staggered and children will be welcomed by staff at the classroom doors from outside. Parents will not be permitted to enter the classrooms so settling children will need to be done outside at a safe distance from other people. Again, this will reduce contact between children, staff and families.
•    Meals will be served using disposable plates, bowls, cups and cutlery and children will remain in their rooms to eat, in their small groups.
•    Handwashing will happen often for everyone. Your child will be supported to wash their hands on arrival, before and after eating, before and after playing outside and before going home – lots of handwashing, so we will use sensitive soap and also provide hand lotion.
•    Children will be supported as much as possible to follow the guidance on good respiratory practice – catching any coughs or sneezes in a tissue and putting it straight in the bin, then washing hands (again!) We will also encourage children not to touch their faces.
•    Some resources such as sand will not be used and soft toys and furnishings will be removed from the classrooms so that we are able to keep things as clean as possible.
•    Cleaning will be much more rigorous, especially in high use areas. Everything will be cleaned thoroughly between sessions with antibacterial spray and again at the end of each day. Staff will use antibacterial wipes to clean toilets, tables, chairs and toys after use throughout the session.

We do of course appreciate that as a parent you may decide that you do not want your child to come back to Nursery. This is of course entirely your choice and we will respect your decision. 

We will not charge those of you who usually pay for childcare, should your choice be to keep your child at home.

We would like you to consider very carefully what you would like to do and be ready to let us know on Monday 18th May when we will call to ask you. Please pick up the phone (we won’t call too early don’t worry!) and staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have. Please be aware that depending on numbers, a place for your child from 1st June is not guaranteed. We will be prioritising places for families as above and it is of course very important that we only have safe numbers of children in Nursery.

We would also like you to consider whether it would be possible for your child to come to nursery for less hours than they usually do. So – if they usually come full time (30 hours), could you manage with just am or pm sessions? Would it be possible for your child to attend for just the core school day (8.45 to 3.15) rather than a long day? We are hoping to be open for some children from 7.45 to 5.45 but this will have to be a limited group due to staffing restrictions. Please be considerate and only request what you need.

There is a lot to consider and should you require more information, you can access the government guidance below:

Implementing protective measures in education and childcare settings

Opening schools and educational settings to more pupils from 1st June – guidance for parents and carers

 Also – if you have specific questions that you would like to ask us before Monday, please email the office for your child’s school and we will do our best to help:

Our situation and plans for reopening to more children are under constant review. We hope you understand that whilst we will do our best to work with you and deliver the provision that you need, we may, in the best interests of everyone, need to withdraw the offer at any time. 

Have a lovely weekend and we look forward to speaking to you all on Monday.

Best wishes
Sian and the Nursery Teams