When we reach the end of this summer term, the impact of coronavirus and Covid-19 will have been felt for 18 school weeks. It was upon returning to school after the February half-term, Monday 24th February, that the first suspected cases of coronavirus were reported in schools elsewhere in the country where pupils had returned from February school ski trips. For 7 of those 18 weeks we were only allowed to open our doors to the children of key workers and those children categorised as vulnerable, and we did this also over the Easter and summer half-term holidays. Then, for another 7 of those weeks, in June and July, we have been permitted to (but restricted to in my opinion!) open more widely to pupils in Years R, 1 and 6. Attendance averages across these year groups has climbed from 60% of eligible pupils in the first week to 84% of eligible pupils in this the sixth week of the wider re-opening phase.
During the past term and a half, I must bring to everyone’s attention the formidable and inspirational work done by the staff members at St Peter’s who work in a variety of logistical and practical roles to keep the school running smoothly. Worthy of mention and merit are the office team of Mrs Phillips, Mrs Burrows, Mrs Pope, Mrs Brown and Mrs Woolston. These ‘front line’ colleagues have been the face of the school for much of the communication that has come into the school, and arrange for the distribution of letters, messages and home learning documents. Mr Chapman and Mr Mack, our caretakers, have done sterling work to maintain and then enhance the site standards, as well as directing traffic for our new drop-off and pick-up arrangements. Mrs Gray leads the catering team of Mrs Crockford, Mrs Halliday and Mrs Carter-Hall. They provided high quality midday meals throughout the closure period, as well as breakfast during the full closure and breakfast and lunch over the Easter break. And finally, we have a team of midday supervisors who come in to supervise the dining hall and playground lunchtime play. This team has responded wonderfully to new roles such as sanitising each seating place and table between every diner at lunch, and then covering the school site when the rooms are empty at lunchtime to do a round of sterilising wipes over handles, taps and light switches. Thanks go to Mrs Stan, Mrs Kirby, Mrs McHugh, Mrs Merret, Mrs Underdown, Mrs Dicaprio and Miss Andrews for their contribution.
Believe me when I say that, as Headteacher at St Peter’s, the only person prouder than me of the team that they lead in 2020 is Jurgen Klopp and his victorious Liverpool side (sorry, I couldn’t resist!).
Mr R Cunningham